Tuesday, October 30, 2007

The momements I've been waiting for...

Moment 1:
I finally got my cell-phone! YAY! Turns out, the PO peeps are complete... well, they's not the sharpest tools in the shed. We discovered that my phone was actually there THE WHOLE TIME. Apparently they were looking for an Elizabeth Day at 1413B. The fact that the package said Elizabeth Day McCarthy at 1413B just completely didn't register that it could possibly be the same person. Luckily, I didn't leave after they told me it wasn't there... I pushed and pushed and made them accommodate me, and... 40 minutes later, voila! A phone! I'm very proud of myself because I'm usually a complete push-over/not wanting to cause problems, but thank goodness I broke out of my shell this time. I feel like every other instance of impatience when I felt like I was dealing with incompetence (for some reason, waiting in line at WalMart and the PO seem to top the list right now) when I just kept my cool, exploded all over those poor, pathetic, postal people yesterday.

My new phone flips. I'm not sure how I feel about it... I really loved my old Nokia. I must say, though, my new phone does have a camera, which means I hope to be posting more pictures now. (My digital camera ran out of battery and I seem to have left my charger in Utah, which means I won't be taking any shap-shots on that until Thanksgiving.)

I have officially turned off my old phone, probably never to turn it on again. Not only has it provided me with instant interruption by any and all who are graced with my number, but it posed as a watch and an alarm-clock as well. Plus, having a hubby on the opposite coast lends itself to frequent calls with much longevity.

Farewell, dear phone. I only wish I had given you a name...

Moment 2:
I finally felt an earthquake!! I use to shrivel on the days of my youth when I would arrive at school and my fellow pre-teen pupils would proclaim, "Did you feel the earthquake last night? My bed moved across the room!" And I would just stare at them like, "I missed it?! How could I miss such an exciting event! The one time something cool happens to me, I totally sleep through it!" Well this time, folks, I was wide awake.

It was pretty darn awesome.

I think I may always associate eating macaroni and cheese (cheap-o version, from the box) with being in an earthquake, since both happen to me on extremely rare occasions, yet they happened today at the same time.

Monday, October 29, 2007

After examination...

and no noticeable smells or discoloration...
I used my comb today!

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Mysterious Foodstuffs

Today, I acquired two mysterious items. These items were given to me... well, actually I took them. I have tried to be more experimental with my cooking, lately, and ever since my lovely fennel and leek casserole success, I have developed an gravitation towards unknown ingredients.

For all you who are familiar with Mormon culture, it will be no surprise for you to hear that today, upon entering the room for Relief Society, stood a table, upon which was a box, a sack full of plastic grocery bags and a sign that said please take a bag of ....

Well, that's the problem... You see, it was a box full of an exciting eatables that I have never before experienced, and I said to myself, "Why shouldn't I have some of these... ? I can just Google them when I get home and find me a tasty recipe. I really should be eating more fresh fruits and vegetables anyway".

However, I have now found myself at home with two shiny, orange, mysterious foods (note the picture) and without the memory of their names. Can anyone help me out?

Saturday, October 27, 2007

I have never flipped anyone off before, but...

Yesterday, I was pointing the moral equivalent of my middle-finger to the post office all day in my heart.
I reiterate what I have previously said. I don't mean to be redundant, but the experience I had this week is, I believe, much more convincing as to the evils of monopolies, particularly those run by the generally incompetent government.

Let me start at the beginning.

So, Jay gets a phone-call from my dad, the Saturday during my surprise visit , to let Jay know that my family has switched from Cingular to Verizon (yes, I'm still on my families' plan...) and so he may not be able to get a hold of me as my phone will no longer work. (Don't worry, they didn't bother trying to tell me about it at all). So all of a sudden, I have no cell phone. Luckily, I had only slight delays flying back to SJC, because if I had another 5 hour incident, having no phone would have been terribly inconvenient. So anyway, my mom double-checks my new Stanford address and sends it on its way on Monday, October 22, 2007.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007, evening, Lyman mailroom:
Yessss, a package slip! My cell phone must be here now! On the slip it says my package will be ready to pick up at the Stanford PO the next day. Having learned my lesson about the slowness of every USPS office (yes, I've sampled quite a few across the country) and having a rather large impatience problem, I decide to go first thing in the morning, to avoid waiting in line.

Thursday, October 25, 2007, 9AM, Stanford PO: Yessss, only 3 people in front of me. (10 minutes later...) I hand the dude my slip. He looks at it, "Oh," he says. "We have not received the truckload of packages yet today. I'll go check, but it's probably not here". He leaves. (10 minutes go by...) "Yep, I was right, come back sometime after 1pm today. It should be here by then".

Thursday, October 25, 2007, 1:15PM, Stanford PO:
Of course, there is quite a line... 30 minutes pass and it's finally my turn. I begin to realize that convenient communication will finally be mine. I hand my slip to a lady this time. "I'm sorry, but we have not received any packages today. You better come back tomorrow, sometime after 1". I leave, very deflated and slightly annoyed. No worries, I will at least get my cell-phone for the weekend.

Friday, October 26, 2007, 1:00PM, Stanford PO:
Yesss, there is only one person in front of me for the package line! We wait, behind a closed door. I turn to the kid in front of me "Did you ring the bell already?", "No, but the guy saw me". Ok, this is a Stanford student, he must know what he's talking about. 3 minutes pass, a line is accruing behind us, the kid finally rings the bell. 2 more minutes pass, one of the regular PO people yell, "how many times have you rung the bell? Maybe try it again". (Note to self, always ring the bell multiple times because perhaps when the sign says "ring bell for service" it actually means that it can only be heard when you know the secret number of times you're supposed to ring it.) So he rings it again. A short dark-haired man emerges from the door next to the one we're waiting behind, bearing a sign that reads "Please pick-up packages in main line today". He tapes it on the service window and goes back into his hole. By this time, we have probably 10 or so people waiting in line. We all snake around and get in the back of an already 7-person line.

20 minutes later...
I finally have made my way up to the desk. I can almost feel the cold, hard phone in my hands and see my reflection in it's shiny new screen. I hand her the package slip. "One minute please" she tells me as she walks off to the left.
4 minutes pass... she emerges from the right. "I'm sorry," she begins, "I can't find it, so I'm having my supervisor look for it. Would you mind stepping aside while I help the next customer?" I politely step aside and stare off into space, wishing they would just let me back there...
8 minutes pass... the same short man emerges. "I'm sorry, we have not received our shipment of packages yet today. The truck has just pulled up and we're expecting 3 more. Would you mind giving me your phone number so we can call you when it gets here?" A nice gesture, I think, "Actually, no, you can't call me because the package contains my new cell-phone", realizing that they'd probably never call me ANYWAY, I add, "could I get yours, so that I can call you?" and then realize that I have no phone and won't be able to do that either... He gives me the number and tells me to try back later that day. Yeah right.

On a slightly related note, my mom emails me today:
Subject: Where are you?
You haven't responded to my phone calls. Are you still in MA? I thought you were there for just the weekend. Let me know you're ok.
luvu mm

Silly mother...

Fishy Comb

I dropped my comb in the toilet today... I'm not sure what happened, but I'm pretty sure it's my comb's fault- it must have wanted to go swimming. No matter, it got its wish. It is now soaking in very very hot soapy soapy water until I am satisfied of its sterility. Any suggestions are warmly welcomed.

Friday, October 26, 2007


Maybe this is just funny for me, because I know all these people...

One of these days I'll get on youtube and you'll all be the firsts to know about it :)

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Hiatus Explanation part II

Well, I've done it again. I knew the breaks would be if not consistent in spacing, consistent in existence. Such is life, but for good reason (once again). No, I didn't get married again , but I did plan a surprise trip to visit my new hubby for the weekend, which sort of took up my scant free time. (Getting ahead on homework and planning a conspiracy preventing him from becoming privy to my arrival was more work than I had anticipated). I had an excellent (if I do say so myself), very elaborate plan worked out so that things I needed would be picked up and passed along to someone else, who would then pick me up from the airport. Meanwhile, I had even arranged for someone to meet with him during the window of time I would need to arrive at his place and decorate his apartment with homemade signs, balloons, etc etc. It was perfect! Nothing could go wrong!

Alas, the weather foiled me in Chicago... my 1 hour lay-over turned into 5, and my plans were in need of severe alterations. I gave in and gave away my secret behind tears in a rainy airport, once I realized that my 8:30pm arrival was becoming a post-midnight arrival. Since I was going for surprise and not heart-attack, I thought it was a good idea to alert him to the late-night guest he should be expecting. Though now, I'm a bit curious as to what would have happened if an unannounced being snuck into bed with him in the night...

Anyway, I told him that my plans had been foiled and that I would call him to pick me up from the airport once I had arrived. However, a stroke of genius hit somewhere over New York, and I instead called a friend to my rescue. I found myself tip-toeing through Jay's small apartment, wishing his AC was running to muffle all the creaks from his floor and my feet, while setting up my original plan. Turns out, he's a much heavier sleeper than I give him credit for (which I should have caught on to when I accidentally popped a balloon outside his apartment) and I am more competent as ninja than previously supposed. After carefully hanging punny signs, laying out desserts, and lighting some candles, he awoke to the sound of his girl through the mouth of his cell-phone. It was quite entertaining to be able to hear his sleepy voice in-person and through my phone just outside his cracked apartment door. I will treasure the cute "just out of bed and pleasantly surprised" look on his face when he discovered me behind his door. (just wish I had my camera ready...) If all toiling was just to see that, 'twas completely worth it. We had a lovely weekend of no-stress, no homework, and no responsibility and I have paid for the neglect ever since leaving his arms - but I'd do it again if it weren't for the grad-student pay-check on which I live.

Anyway, I'm officially caught up and thought I'd fill you (all 3 of you) in. I hope you derive pleasure from my efforts :)

Monday, October 15, 2007

Makes me wish I had kids...

...so I can remember to teach them all this great stuff! Two really great inspirational presentations about raising children "right". Immunizing against Immorality and Parents and Self-Worth . Though a lot of it is centered around LDS beliefs (especially the first one) I think anyone could take away a lot of helpful ideas. I especially like the idea of involving your children in family counsels where everyone decides together what is and isn't appropriate for your home (from the first). Not mentioned, but related, I think it's great when parents let their children choose an appropriate punishment for themselves when they break the rules.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Fame has graced my presence!

My earlier suspicions have been confirmed... Steve Young is in my new ward. Sweet eh? He taught gospel doctrine today about Paul's teachings on justification in Romans and it was so funny that he kept using football analogies. Turns out, there's a whole website about famous and rumored to be famous Mormons , that is, members of the Church of Jesus Christ, of Latter-Day Saints . Por exemplo, can you believe that Christina Aguilara's parents met at BYU? Probably not my first choice as an LDS representative... but kinda crazy. My favorite LDS actor/producer is undoubtedly Jon Heder, or as I refer to him Napoleon Dynamite. Go Mo's!

Friday, October 12, 2007

Time-travel is for Amateurs

For all you Harry Potter fans out there, I just wanted to inform you that I have become like Hermione. It's true. No, I cannot cast magical spells, no, I am not the top of my class, and no, I have never snogged with Rupert. (Though I do love that kid... in an adorable little brother kind of way). But I am taking two classes that meet at the same time. Once you find out that I am able to watch the missed class at my convenience online, you may not be so impressed. BUT I just discovered the other day, that I am capable of watching a 75 minute class in only 60 minutes, by changing it to play in high speed in WMP. Now I must decide what to do with all my saved 15 minuteses!

Kinked back?

You know how sometimes if you move suddenly in an odd way you can get a kink in your neck? WELL, I'm not really sure what happened, but somewhere in between the time I picked up my clean laundry from the drier and when I set it down in my room (after lugging it up 4 flights of stairs) I discovered that I seem to have kinked my entire upper back. Yes folks, I can no longer turn my chin past either shoulder and it not only hurts my neck, but every muscle in between my shoulder-blades. Sometimes I amaze myself with what I am capable of... Anyway, I slept on a cold pack and now I'm trying to get my mini hot pack to be situated such that it will cover a maximal amount of afflicted area. Any advice on how to over-come would be greatly appreciated.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Fun in San Fran

A dear friend from home came to stay with me this past weekend. I always love to have visitors because, despite my living less than an hours drive from San Francisco, I rarely take advantage of the wonders it has to offer unless I have visitors who want to be tourists. Though most of our weekend was spent "conferencing" I decided to skip my CFD class on Monday and spend the day with her seeing the sights of San Fran. It was so much fun! We got "lost" a few times, but that is quite meaningless because we weren't really trying to get anywhere... we just wanted to see the city; so even when we were not anywhere touristy, we still felt like we were getting a more realistic taste of city-life. We did manage to happen upon a scenic route that took us to the top of a hill with a fantastic view of the whole city, and this was just the beginning... we saw the Golden Gate Bridge several times (according to our guidebook, it is the most photographed bridge in the world. I'm not sure how they can get statistics for something like that, but I kind of believe it. Together, we probably took over 20 pictures of that bridge, from almost every angle imaginable), wandered through the Golden Gate Park, touched the ocean (which I've actually never done in No-Cal before), drove down Lumbard Street, posed on a trolley (my first time on one),
had dim sum in Chinatown, hot chocolate at Ghiradelli Square... we even drove through very small Japantown. Yes folks, we did it all. We even timed it perfectly so that we got to experience real-live California traffic on our way home. Luckily, with the two of us, we got to dominate the carpool lane :) All that, and we made it back with plenty of time to get in a couple hours of homework.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Fun with Numbers!

I JUST now realized that my ring ceremony took place on September 8, 2007. Oh wait, I already knew that... BUT that means it was on 9/8/07!! Cool eh?

Monday, October 8, 2007

General (ly amazing) Conference

Well, they did it again. Conference was sooo great! I can't wait until the Ensign comes out so I can read through them again. I feel like ever sentence was so packed with goodness, that I missed out on a lot the first time through.
Go President Beck with her notion of women power! She's so awesome! And it was such a testament of the "world-wideness" of the gospel to have so many 70 speakers with accents! It was so awesome!! Although I must admit that it was hard to pay attention to Elder Christoffel Golden Jr. because the whole time I was debating with myself... "where's he from? It's either South Africa or New Zealand. I think South Africa. Wait maybe it IS New Zealand!" Turns out, he's from South Africa (once again Wikipedia saves the day). The Hinck was cuter than ever and I'm so excited about Eyring's new position. I just love listening to him speak, and I suspect we'll get to hear him more often now. :) Ohhhh, and my heart goes out to Elder Wirthlin!! Such a sweetheart! It was so hard to watch him up there shaking so much, but it was also amazing to see him struggle through, out of breath, so that he could say what he came to say- like it was so important, it needed to be said. I was a bit surprised by Elder Holland's zinger about the notion of the trinity being incomprehensible, though very true and very funny. It makes me realize how lucky we are to have these seemly-obvious-but-apparently-not-so-obvious things pointed out to us so that life makes sense! I just love the gospel!
Anyway, now I'll spiritual-high-ified and had to say my two cents. I'm pretty sure you can watch, listen to and/or read any of these online .

Oh yeah, and my little sister is engaged!

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

4 weeks of marital bliss!

Just realized I've been officially married for 4 weeks! Best 4 weeks ever!! :) I love you Jay!

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Random Rants

YAY! I finally finished my Numerical Optimization project and turned it in last night. Don't worry that it was actually due last March... most of the class has not turned it in either, and actually, there are people who took the class the previous year and they still haven't even turned theirs in! Which begins my rant... Who does our professor think he is to assign a project that he knows is too much for his students to finish within the quarter. The homework was hard enough to get turned in on time, and completed, so where, I wonder, does he think we're going to find extra time to work on a huge project? Anyway, good riddance. I am free again!

This next item is a more minor rant, more of a pet-peeve. Really, it just gives away my intensely anal nature, but nonetheless, I feel the need to project it into cyber-space and get it off my chest. What is it with professors who don't erase the board completely before they begin writing? Can't they see the remnants of the equations from 10 minutes ago? Can they not hear their poor cries: "I make no sense now that 2/3 or 7/8 or 99999/100000 of me is missing! Please put me out of my misery!"? Not to mention, stray marks can make l's turn into T's and functions can magically earn derivatives. I will never understand...

On a lighter note, we have a very interesting clock in my CFD class. Every class it portrays a different amount of mis-guidedness. Our first day it was 16 minutes behind schedule, the next class nearly on-time, only to be foiled by yesterday's 13 minutes ahead. Why the rush, I have no conjectures. Now, if only our professor would follow its counsel and let us out early :)