Friday, February 27, 2009

A Love Note to my Brother's Dog

Dear Preto,

I'd like to thank you for taking me for a walk last night. (I'm not one of those humans who thinks it's me taking you for a walk.) It was clearly evident who was leading who...what with you 5 feet ahead of me, straining against the leash for all you were worth. Anyone who is anyone would agree that you were the one in charge.

I would like to thank you for the workout you gave me. Even though I go to the gym at least 4 days a week, I'm more sore today than I've been in about 6 months. I'm not sure what you did differently but if you figure it out, you could market it and make big bucks! (No Preto, I'm not talking about the deer you like to bark at, I'm talking about money...the stuff that buys you that delicious food you eat.)

There's something I don't understand though. Well...a few things actually. Why didn't you stop when I was whining to you about my shin splints? I thought you would take pity on me when we were going up that super steep hill, but you kept at the insane pace you set and it seemed you didn't give me a second thought.

Maybe next time you take me for a walk, if I'm lucky enough for that, you'll remember that it was me who fed you and gave you water that wasn't frozen when my brother was out of town. Maybe you will remember that it was me who got dog poop ALL OVER my shoes when I was trying to clean out your pen. And maybe you will remember that it was me who threatened to turn my brother in for animal cruelty if he didn't clean your pen more often.

Here's another thing I don't understand: What is it about fire hydrants?

And another thing: Do you really have to mark your territory every 3 feet? Really? Is there no shame?

And another thing again: I don't think that nice lady who has the really cute front yard is going to appreciate that gift you left right by her sidewalk.

But Preto, there is one thing I'm really grateful for...maybe two. I'm grateful that even though you walk a lot faster than I do, YOU have more gray hair than I do...ha! And the second thing I'm grateful for is that you don't bark at the other dogs we pass. That obedience school must have been good for something after all.'s one more thing I'm grateful for: Thanks for keeping all the big, bad, scary men away from me after it gets dark...because who wants to carry their gun while they're out walking? Well...except for the dentist.

I hope we can walk again soon.

Love your friend Noelle

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Target Practice 101

Things I Learned About Shooting My Gun:

1. Shooting guns is mostly a man's sport. In the sea of men at the shooting range I saw one other woman. Of course she became my immediate hero. She shot that gun as if she were Annie Oakley.

2. NEVER NEVER NEVER place your gun on concrete! That's why the wood slab is there.

3. When someone else wants to walk on to the shooting range to hang their target you have to empty the bullets from your gun, leave it open, and say "clear".

4. Don't shoot too high.

5. Really, aim lower.

6. Hold your arms lower and that will help you aim lower.

7. Just shoot at the target over and over and over.

8. When you finally do hit the target, make sure the dentist is actually watching. Unless of course your dentist isn't the one teaching you how to shoot the that case, just make sure the teacher is watching. Because if he's not (or she, I don't want to discriminate), the fact that you blew the target clear across the shooting range just isn't quite as exciting.

9. Save your spent bullets. Because any REAL gunman - or woman - knows that reloading bullets is the way of the future. In fact, "if Obama has his say we will no longer be able to buy ammunition and reloading is the only way we'll be able to get ammunition." (The dentist is dedicating an entire room in his house to this reloading process.)

10. And finally, the most important lesson of all: WEAR BIG FAT EAR PLUGS! I didn't. Everyone else did, but I only had the normal 'help you sleep on an airplane' kind of earplugs. This might not be an issue for someone who DOESN'T suffer from vertigo. But I'm not that someone.

I guess the sound, combined with the sound, added to the other sounds, kicked my vertigo right into high gear and so for the last four days the world has been spinning...really. This morning I went to pass a truck. (Forget the fact that what I was doing was illegal, that's not part of the story.) I gunned it, because I have a really cool car that I can gun, (pun not intended) and the motion of my car all of a sudden going faster reminded me "hello, vertigo..."

Don't worry, I have medicine. And I take it. And I have hope that it's helping me.

Overall I would say I got a B+ in Target Practice 101. The dentist said, "You were doing great by the time we finished." I'll keep working on it, and maybe when I'm bored I'll go back up and collect more bullet shells for the dentist. He would like that.


Mr. Thompson, in answer to your question, NO!!! I do not sleep with my gun under my pillow. I can see it now, me tossing and turning, because I do, every night, and all of a sudden POW! Oh whoops, I somehow forgot the gun was under my pillow. It's never going to happen: the whole sleep with the gun under my pillow scenario. However, the gun is close to my bed, very much UNLOADED. The bullets are not stored anywhere near the gun. It's. Just. Safer. That. Way.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Answer to Question #1

Sandra's question went something like this: "Did you know that Ryan W. that works for you is the brother of my Matt's girlfriend?"

My answer is this: "No, I had no idea! That Ryan W. is something else." Here's a little story about Ryan W.

We have a long-time customer named Gloria. She's a nice lady. She's a little eccentric and a lot picky about what plants she'll put in her yard, but she's nice and she NEVER yells at me. She called here the other day looking for my brother.

Me: "Sorry Gloria, he's not here. Can I help you?"

Her: "Oh dear, I just needed to ask him a question about some plants."

Me: "You can ask me."

Her: "Oh dear, I just really needed Ben."

Me: "Well, he won't be back today. But I'm pretty sure I can help you."

So she asks her questions and I answer them. THEN she says:

"You really do know as much as Ben!"

But I digress.

One day this summer Gloria wanted us to plant some trees for her. It turned into quite an ordeal. She was in nearly every day and she changed her mind several times before finally confirming her order. Ryan W. is our delivery driver/tree planter and he helped Gloria tag her trees, so he saw first hand some of her eccentricities.

When the big day arrived for Ryan W. to plant Gloria's trees, he came prepared with his phone. I know you're all thinking that a phone does not help in the tree planting process. BUT...what the phone does do is record video, and Ryan W. recorded Gloria as she told him where to put the trees. And he recorded Gloria when she told him he needed to move the trees 1.5" the other way. And he recorded Gloria when she told him her father's life history. And when Gloria asked Ryan W. what he was doing, he told her he was recording her for his journal. Because, who knew, but Ryan W. says he's big into journaling. What a crock. (If you can name the movie that line came from I'll send you a prize.)

AND THEN...Ryan W. posted the video on his Facebook page and showed it to all the other employees who have had the fortune of helping Gloria.

Gloria was so pleased with Ryan W.'s work (and the work of the two guys he took to help him) she gave them a tip. These delivery drivers/tree planters love tips. ESPECIALLY the tip Gloria gave them:

Gloria loves penguins. I guess she loves them so much she had a stash of them in her house, because she gave three of them away: one to each of the guys who planted her trees.

Ryan went back later and had Gloria sign his penguin. It says "To Ryan, From Gloria. A fine young man of promise."

Serves you right is what I told Ryan W.


Tomorrow I'll post "Target Practice 101" in response to Carrie's question

And Sandra, I'll email you about the crabs. No matter how I try I'm just not sure I can make that a post everyone would enjoy.

And Dave, no way, no how, am I telling you about my book. Not after your rude comment! And it will be Sandra who edits it.

AND would think that with over 80 page loads in one day, I could get more than three questions. Now's your chance people.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

If I Were a Lizard

I would curl up on a rock and sleep the entire afternoon away. And I could because the sun is shining. I love the sun.

Looks like my last post brought out some strong feelings in one blog reader. Fun times...

And now about future posts: I'm having writers block. I'm feeling unfunny, and uninspired. I have no idea what to write about.

So...ask me a question. Any question. And maybe I'll answer it. Okay, I'll probably answer it. Give me a topic and I'll do my best to write about it. I just borrowed a book from my uncle. It's called - rats, I can't remember what it's called. But he promises it will make me smarter. Because that's my goal in life - to become smarter. And once that happens just think of what I'll be able to write about!

Questions anyone?

Monday, February 23, 2009

Just Because...

I'm still cleaning.

I'm still organizing.

I'm still simplifying, if you will.

I found this:

I've had a lot of crushes in my life.

I've fallen in love a few times.

But Hector was love at first sight.

And it lasted for 3 whole days!

It could have lasted forever if:

We had spoken the same language,

We had lived in the same country,

We had had the same religion,


But those three days were ...sigh... just perfect.

(Because I'm pretty sure it was love at first sight for him too.)

But then we said goodbye and he drove away.

I shed a tear (maybe...I did for sure if it makes the story more romantic)

And I dedicated at least four pages to my true love in my journal.

Some day, when I write a best-selling novel, and I will because it's on my list of things to do before I die, I'm going to write about Hector. And it's going to be good.

Friday, February 20, 2009

More Random Stuff

1. I'm cleaning stuff. I'm organizing stuff. I'm simplifying, if you will.
In the process I found this - sent to me by Mr. Thompson and Me.
I laughed as much this time as I did when she sent it to me a million years ago.

2. The dentist has decided that tomorrow is the day he's going to teach me how to shoot my gun. Wish me luck. Wish the dentist more luck.

3. Speaking of the dentist. We had this conversation last night:

Me: "Remember when I told you I had a blog?"

Him: "Yeah."

Me: "Do you know what a blog is?"

Him: "Kind of."

Me: "A blog is..." and then I tell him.

Me: "So, I mentioned you gave me a gun."

Him: "Call it a weapon. It sounds better that way."

Me: "So, I mentioned you gave me a weapon. That led to other things, and the other things led to people (well, one person really) wanting you to leave a comment on my blog."

Him: "Hmm...maybe you could tell them that the dentist doesn't read."

Me: "Not a great option."

Him: "Maybe you could tell them that the dentist works on teeth, not computers."

Me: "I tried that."

Him: "Maybe you could tell them...I don't know, I'm sure you'll come up with something."

I'll work on it. One day we'll have a comment from the dentist...unless I shoot him tomorrow.

4. I saw two Mexican fellows dressed as the Statue of Liberty, standing on State Street, waving signs that advertised tax help. I just laugh.

5. Can someone smarter than me tell me how to create a link? I have the 'link' thing at the bottom of my blog I just have no idea how to use it.

6. And finally, a word of advice: When you take a hot pan of caramel brownies out of the oven make sure you don't put them on top of a burner that is turned on. IF you do happen to do that, run fast because the time of placement of pan to total explosion of pan is only about 6 seconds, and let me tell you...the mess of that explosion will haunt you for days.

Have a great weekend. I'll be back next week with some great stories. (Assuming I can think of some great stories.)

PS. This is just a little note to AnnaLee to say hello. (I knew all along you were real and not pretend like those other people suggested.)

PPS. Camaree, do you take visitors? You know, if a girl just happened to make her way your way one weekend, do you offer your couch as a place to rest a weary head? (Sneaky way to get you to comment huh?)

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Thought You Would Like To Know


I'm this happy!

I got some really great news last night.

News that really isn't mine to share, at least not this publicly...yet. was good and I'm happy!

(Photo courtesy of my adorable niece Katrina)

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Without A Trace

Do any of you watch that show? Agent Jack Mahone and I would be good friends. I wish Agent Mahone were real. If he were real he could help me. Turns out my blog has been hijacked. Sort of. It's complicated. I'll do my best to explain.

Did you know that Mr. Woolley has been MIA for a few weeks now? Our dear blogging friend Sandra is the first one who pointed it out to me. She sent me an email asking about Mr. Woolley. First he made his blog private, then he removed himself from my followers list (and now it's down to a measly 9 followers), THEN he removed all of his comments from my blogs.

I emailed Mr. Woolley to find out if he was alive. I heard no response. My sister dedicated an entire blog to Mr. Woolley. Nothing. I copied a part of Sandra's blog where she said something about Mr. Woolley being MIA, thinking this would tug at Mr. Woolley's heartstrings. Turns out he has no heartstrings. Mr. Thompson and Me sent Mr. Woolley a text inquiring as to his whereabouts. I don't think she heard a reply. And finally, in a drastic last attempt at reaching out to my friend, and yours, I sent Mr. Woolley this message, "Where the 'H' are you?" Yes, I said it just like that. He could read between the lines.

Days and days went by before I FINALLY heard a response from Mr. Woolley. And it was with that response that I found out about my blog being hijacked, sort of. It's still complicated.

Mr. Woolley refuses to rejoin the blogging world until I meet some of his demands. And by I, I really mean we...all of you who have ever read my blog.

MR. WOOLLEY'S DEMANDS: (and if they are met he will make his blog unprivate and bless us all with his witty wisdom and insight once again)

1. Tiff, you spelled Mr. Woolley's name wrong in your blog. Could you fix that?

2. Dentist, Mr. Woolley really wants you to make a comment. In fact, it's possible his blog will never be made unprivate until you comment. (This is where we have some trouble. The dentist might know I have a blog. But he's NEVER read my blog. He wouldn't even know how to find a blog. And to get him to comment??? Maybe, if I agreed to go shoot a buffalo first.) Agent Mahone, WHERE are you???

3. Readers, you don't make enough comments about Mr. Woolley's comments. Forget the fact that it's MY blog and your comments are about MY blog, Mr. Woolley wants your comments to be about his comments. It's like his self-worth and success as an author are determined by YOUR comments. Look at the power you have! Please, for the love of Wally and all else that means anything to you, would you all leave a little comment about how you think Mr. Woolley is funny?!! (Even if you don't think he's funny. At this point it's the number of comments we get, not the content.)

*I'm hopeful that if we get enough comments Mr. Woolley will forget all about the comment from the dentist.

I guess the good news in all of this is that Mr. Woolley is in fact alive and well. He's a royal pain in the neck, and if Agent Mahone were a real person we wouldn't need to meet any of these demands, BUT at least he's alive. (See how I'm always looking for the positive?)

Friday, February 13, 2009

A Math Equation





from now until July

anyone interested in my job?

Thursday, February 12, 2009

My Final Answer

(Yes Virginia, there really is a dentist)

Okay, here's the list of what I put in the Valentines Day package for the dentist:

- a batch of homemade sugar cookies
- one green plastic squirt gun
- a first aid kit
- cologne ( I couldn't smelled so good!)
- package of hershey kisses
- hand warmers (they're really for me but I told him he could keep them at his house)
- a gift certificate for a picnic and a hike in Zions Park
- a package of pansy seeds (he calls me a pansy because I'm always cold)
- a movie
- brownie mix (he thinks he deserves brownie points for something)

The End.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

"He Went to Jared"

All You Need To Know, You Can Learn From These Two Girls

Last night I was curled up watching American Idol with two of my favorite little people. They were really hoping Tatiana won. They couldn't see how obnoxious she was, or how she didn't really sing all that well, all they could see was the dress. "Her dress is so beautiful!"

During one of the commercial breaks we watched a Jared Jeweler commercial. Gabi sighed and said, "I love sparkly things." Erika agreed, "I love sparkly things too." We watched for another minute and then I said, "You know I think I like sparkly things too. How do you think I can get something sparkly?"

Gabi looked at me with that look, the one that says 'are you really that dumb?' and she said, "Noelle, you have to get married." I frowned and said, "But what if I don't ever get married? Does that mean I never get something sparkly?"

Erika piped up and said, "No, that's not what it means. If you want something sparkly just go to Jared and buy it yourself."

I'm thinking these two could have a career with Jared if they really wanted it.

Monday, February 9, 2009

The Princess and The Peasant


Yesterday Allie was playing with a Sleeping Beauty doll. When she walked past me she waved the doll in my face. In response I said, "Hello Sleeping Beauty."

Allie went to leave the room and right before she turned the corner she turned around, grinned, and said, "Hello peasant."

I love these kids...I just can't help it.

Friday, February 6, 2009


(For those who read the comments on my blog, this will make more sense)

I promised a post about what the love of Wally has to do with anything. doesn't, not really. It's just a saying I like to use. It's perfect for when you want to throw your hands up in the air.

Before I say anything about Wally, let me say this: My grandma had Alzheimer's for a number of years before she died. For those who have known someone with this disease, you'll understand when I say you can either choose to laugh or to cry. While I did both, I preferred to laugh...and I did... when she wanted me to lock the toilet so the chickens couldn't get in, or when she told my brother to sit down and act like a lady. If you're going to make the most of bad situations, you have to find the humor.

And that brings me to Wally. Sigh...poor Wally. Wally (a nickname) was an elder in my mission. He told us in a zone meeting that he had a mental illness. We weren't sure if we believed him, because he was the type of person who would joke about such a thing. After he stopped taking his medication we found out he was telling the truth.

Without his medication Wally went kind of crazy. His companion did the best he could to keep Wally under control until our mission president got back (he was visiting the elders in Bermuda, because Bermuda was a part of our mission. Don't get me started on why sisters couldn't serve in Bermuda...). Well one day Wally's companion called my companion and me (my comp. was "Mr. Thompson and Me") and begged for help. He was at his wits end with Wally and needed some help.

We had an impromptu zone meeting and took Wally bowling and then to lunch. I remember Wally had on several layers of clothes and a winter hat (although it wasn't that cold). When we asked Wally what he wanted for lunch he took his hat off and pulled a smashed loaf of bread out of his hat. "I brought lunch. You never know when you're going to need it."

Wally ended up in the mental ward of a hospital in Queens and had to stay there until his dad came to get him. We visited Wally in the hospital and it was incredibly sad. My companion and I came up with "For the love of Wally" in memory of our friend, and as a way to lighten the heaviness of the situation.

And with that, I'm taking a poll. A simple yes or no will do. Do you want to know the final result of what goes into the dentist's Valentine's Day package? (Why I think you care about this stuff is beyond me...just humor me.)

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Here Goes Nothing

I'm afraid...I'm very afraid. Oh wait...I don't need to be afraid...ever again...because look what the dentist got me for Valentine's Day. It comes with lessons on how to use it.

As tomorrow is the anniversary of the Constitution I think it's a good time to let you know that the dentist takes his right to bear arms very seriously. Apparently he wants me to take it seriously as well.

I'm thinking an appropriate gift for him might be a first aid kit for when I miss the target and accidently shoot his foot.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

For the Love of Wally!

So...let's talk. I think you should know one of my weaknesses. (And I'm not talking about chocolate chip cookies...although I could eat 100 of them if there were 100 in front of me.) The weakness that is going to cause me problems sooner rather than later...and thus this my total inability to give a creative gift. If all that mattered were the card I'd have it made, but that's not how it works with certain VALENTINE'S DAY. I'm in such big trouble.

A few days ago the questions in my mind were "Should I get the dentist a Valentine's Day gift? Will he get me one? Is this even a holiday that the dentist knows exists?" (Maybe you're wondering who the dentist is. Well...he's a dentist. Not the dentist who fills my cavities, but a dentist that does fill cavities for other people. And he's the guy that I've been kind of seeing for a while now.) But...back to the topic at hand.

Turns out he does know the holiday exists, and he did get me a gift. (I'm still debating on telling you what that gift was. I'm afraid of the comments I might get. I'll think about it and let you know what I've decided by the end of this post.)

It's taking me a while to get to the point of this post. WHAT SHOULD I GET THE DENTIST? I have no idea!!! My only thought was cologne (I know, original) but the other night we were perusing the cologne counter and he said, "I don't need any of this. I have plenty." And the problem is that he doesn't need ANYTHING because hey, he's a dentist. If he wants it he just buys it.

I'm begging for suggestions here. PLEASE help me out. What are you getting your dentist for Valentine's Day? (Okay, maybe you won't be getting your dentist anything...but you get my point.)

And this will require that you lurkers who read but never comment come out of your shell and help a poor girl out. Just this once...or maybe twice. You'll see that once you comment you might actually like it.

Thank you in advance for the fabulous ideas I'm sure you'll have!

Now...about the gift the dentist gave me. I'll tell you tomorrow...if you can all promise to behave and NOT turn my poor blog into a controversial mess. There...makes you want to come back tomorrow doesn't it?

PS. Are you wondering what the Love of Wally (see the title) has to do with anything? I'll tell you about that too...the day after tomorrow.

PPS. See the 6 followers I have? Don't you want to be a follower too?