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Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Back from the Fast Life

I'm baaack...

:Yawn: What did I miss?

Fifteen days! Not so bad, eh? I'm kinda excited to start reading some of y'all's blogs. I've seen a few of you in real life and have asked "So, what's up in your life?" and got the standard "not much." If I get to your blog and find out that you won the lottery, or escaped an IRS audit, or discovered a vaccine for bad hair days, I'm gonna lean towards skepticism the next time you utter "not much."

So what did I do with my time away?
In the coming weeks, I'll post some of the things I did or thought during my little fast. You will know it's from that era by my little disclaimer at the top of those posts. Something that looks like this: From the Fast Life (See how it's italicized AND red AND linked? That's how you'll know it's something pretending to be important.)

SO, From the Fast Life (Day One, July 14th, immediately after posting about my beginning fast.)

In the first minute, I organized the office closet.



Then, I watched the baby play with the trash.

Then, I stared at other things.

Then, I went to bed. At a reasonable hour.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Rest for Julie

Julie Johnson Stout passed away today, Sunday, July 19, at 1PM.
She leaves behind her husband (Brandon) and four children (Hiram, Avalon, Benjamin and James) ages 10 to 1.

Julie was pregnant with her fourth child, James, when she began exhibiting a list of weird symptoms, including memory loss and fatigue. When these were brought up to her doctor, they were explained away as "pregnancy-related," except for her gradual vision loss. In her last trimester, she was diagnosed with a brain tumor.

Julie delivered a healthy boy in August of 2007. A few days later, she had several seizures that left her without memory of having given birth or of having a tumor.

I last saw her at Thanksgiving Point this past May. In the first few seconds that I spotted her, I wasn't really sure it was her due to her changed appearance, and I asked, "Julie?" Her friend responded affirmatively. Dave mentioned that while I was talking to her friend, Julie pointed at me and said my name a few times, proving that she remembered.

As I look at her photos from just a couple years back and compare them to recent ones, I am struck by the changes in her physical appearance in such a short amount of time. Amazing what mortality imposes on us. For most of us, the changes are subtle, taking place over bundles of years. Julie's changes were accelerated and remind me that we are indeed here temporarily. We truly do not know the length of our individual missions and cannot assume that we have decades available to serve them well. Life on Earth feels like it will never end and yet it does, leading to the next phase.

Julie rests now from her physical body as we continue on for now. Prayers of comfort to those who miss her terribly and ache to hug her again.

UPDATE: Brandon posted about the day Julie died here.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Crazy Fast

I'm going to do something really crazy.
(Yes, another thing.)
I've been on a kick of crazy things in the last 2 weeks.
  • I put all our vehicles up for sale at the same time.
  • When a potential buyer drove from Provo to look at them, I changed my mind about selling them.
  • I contemplated several Jaguars for purchase.
  • I ordered 5 pounds of cheese wax and bought 10 pounds of cheese.
  • I decided to store a few hundred gallons of water in our basement.
  • I made many trips to the local thrift store to donate a plethora of belongings. (Would you say I have a plethora of pi├▒atas?)
  • I began waking up at 5:30am. On purpose.
So, a bunch of crazy things. OK, not so much cliff-jumping, mountain-climbing, fear-factor kind of crazy. More along the annoying, inconvenient, domestic line of nutty.

What does this say about me? Probably something.

Here is what I am doing next:
I am going on a Blog and Facebook Fast.


For convenience's sake, I went 24 hours into the future and compiled the most frequently asked questions regarding my fast.

FAQ's (from the future)
Why are you doing this?
'Cause it's crazy!

How long will you do this?
I don't know.

Will you be back?
But, of course! (end haute mustard-possessing accent)

What does this mean?
1. I will not blog.
2. I will not read a blog. (Exception: Googling for info to a project that happens to land on a blog)

3. I will not log into Facebook.

Are you crazy?
Please refer to this, this, and this. And this.
Or yes.

How will I get a hold of you?
I will still use my phone and check email.
I will still answer the door. (Maybe.)

I will learn how to read smoke signals.

How will I learn how to wax cheese?
Refer to above answer. Also, when I come back, I will publish such an educational post.

When will this start?
Tuesday. July 14, 2009. Specifically... now.

How will I know when you're back?
Put my blog onto Google Reader, and you'll be notified when I post.

Why are you telling us about it instead of just "sneaking off"?
This way is funner!

Are there any more frequently asked questions?

Monday, July 13, 2009

What was I thinking?

Yesterday, I decided I no longer wanted the sofa and loveseat that sat in our living room.

This morning, I listed them on

This afternoon, a buyer came and picked them up.

I didn't think of anything past moving the furniture out. (The good news is that this should make getting the carpets cleaned a little easier.)

If you clear it, they will come...

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Step right up, ladies and gentlemen!

Have I got deals for you!

First up...

Aren't these beautiful??
Usually about $2 EACH, they are currently on sale for 88c each at Sunflower Markets!

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This next deal will appeal to the dairy lovers...

Even if you don't usually use coupons, you'll want to print out some of these bad boys!
How would you like to cut the price off ANY brand cheese, ANY brand yogurt, and ANY brand milk?
Go to the and flip through the 10 pages as the order the coupons show up tends to change, and print out those three beayootifull dairy discounts. They expire this month so get them quick. (And don't take them to Macey's.)

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Are you working on your food storage? Remember, the water!

Whether you want 55-gallon barrels, 30- gallon barrels, 15-gallon barrels, or a combination of these, contact the person at the KSL listings here.
Instead of paying $40+ for a 55-gallon barrel, you can get it for $15!

These have only been used once to contain liquid foods (molasses, vinegar, soda pop concentrate, etc.). These are excellently-priced; I bought 4 big ones and 1 each of the other two sizes.

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In the apparel department,
Does the man in your life have a long torso? Is he tired of his T-shirts shrinking to belly shirts? Here are extra long men's tees in 5 dude colors. Ultra soft, extra long, and pre-shrunk.

Shade Clothing released these men's shirts at $19.95 each, but they are being CLEARANCED for $5-$8 each. Every man who has tried on these shirts LOVES the feel and the length. My own hubby bought 6 at clearance. (For best selection, shop in person.) On the first day, David wore one at home, he said "If I continue to enjoy this shirt all day as much as I am now, I'm going back and getting some more!"

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And last, but not least, if you love Cookie Lee jewelry, but dislike the prices, contact Lisa Perkins at or 801-205-9450.

For the month of July, she is doing "buy one, GET ONE FREE, plus FREE SHIPPING"!

You can view the catalog at

Friday, July 10, 2009

Food, Inc.

You probably already know about the depletion of our country's crops. Did you ever wonder why it creates a significant impact in our country's current state of health? Did you ever wonder if there was anything we could do about it?

Thanks Amber for calling my attention to this interesting film; I am so excited to see it!

It plays one day in Utah:
July 17th, Salt Lake City
Broadway Centre Cinemas
111 E 300 S
Salt Lake City, UT 84111


We all vote with our grocery budget (even at the Valmart voting poll).
What do you vote for?

Film Details

In "Food, Inc.", filmmaker Robert Kenner lifts the veil on our nation's food industry, exposing the highly mechanized underbelly that's been hidden from the American consumer with the consent of our government's regulatory agencies, USDA and FDA. Our nation's food supply is now controlled by a handful of corporations that often put profit ahead of consumer health, the livelihood of the American farmer, the safety of workers and our own environment. We have bigger-breasted chickens, the perfect pork chop, insecticide-resistant soybean seeds, even tomatoes that won't go bad, but we also have new strains of e coli--the harmful bacteria that causes illness for an estimated 73,000 Americans annually.
We are riddled with widespread obesity, particularly among children, and an epidemic level of diabetes among adults.

Featuring interviews with such experts as Eric Schlosser (Fast Food Nation), Michael Pollan (The Omnivore's Dilemma) along with forward thinking social entrepreneurs like Stonyfield Farm's Gary Hirshberg and Polyface Farms' Joel Salatin, Food, Inc. reveals surprising -- and often shocking truths -- about what we eat, how it's produced, who we have become as a nation and where we are going from here.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Heidi's Walmart Shirt

Heidi, do you mean like this?

Or like this?

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Goodbye, Love

Oh, Macey's! How I longed for you to save me from the tendrils of the Evil Valmart! I yearned for your small-town charm, your fresh produce and your checkout paper bags. I came to you in the night and wandered your aisles lost and, yet, found.

But as I reached for your merchandise (snort), I found your prices lacking. What happened? What changed? And at your register, you did not take my internet coupons for milk and cheese. You rejected them (and thus, me) with no explanation, forcing me to leave behind my cheese, my milk, and yes, my heart.

So long, dear Macey's. I sink into the abyss of the Evil Valmart. I will come back for your assortment of emergency preparedness supplies, but I will not stay. You may own my heart, but my wallet belongs to Valmart.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Water Challenge- Day 8 - THE END!

"I believe in getting into hot water - it helps keep you clean."
G.K. Chesterton

Man, that took FOREVER!
I don't think I'll do a blog challenge in the same manner next time. That was looooooong.

It's over! How'd you do?
  1. I learned that I indeed eat less junk when I am hydrated. Otherwise, I just keep craving and craving and craving until I realize "wait- I'm thirsty."
  2. I also realized that I definitely need more than 8 cups. I kept waking up at night wanting to drink more water.
  3. I also found that when I was experiencing allergies or feeling a little sick, drinking lots of water totally made me feel better!

What did you learn about yourself?

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Water Challenge- Day 7


I raise my first cup of water this day to you!


Drink up fellow citizens! 8 cups of water a day!

Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom
by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

[Posted songs: "You're a Grand Old Flag"]

Friday, July 3, 2009

Water Challenge- Day 6

Did you hear about the cat who drank 5 bowls of water?
He set a new lap record.

It's Day 6, do you feel like you have improved from Day 1?

Yesterday, I got at least 8 cups in, but felt like I still needed more. No worries, I'm working on reaching the minimum goal of 8.

Did you know?
  • Water plays an important part in the digestion of food. Saliva begins the process, and water continues the job with the breakdown of nutrients. These nutrients require water to carry them to cells.
  • The water in our bodies supports the conduction of electrical charges that maintain the rhythm of the heart.
  • The discs in the spine are a hydraulic support system to support the weight of the upper body, and lack of hydration adds up to increased likelihood of serious back problems.


Treat your body to the water it needs to LOOK and FEEL good.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Water Challenge- Day 5

(Sorry this post is late today. The scheduled post feature has not been working apparently.)


Guess who is paying out dollar bills today?





I got my 8 cups in yesterday! W00T W00T! The last two cups were rather late in the evening since I forgot to actually drink the water bottle I brought to Sarah's house last night. Carried a full bottle there. Carried a full bottle back.

When you drink the water, remember the spring.
Chinese Proverb

So how'd you do? Is it getting easier? Is it still a challenge?
What do you think you can do to improve your results?

Oh, and ...

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Water Challenge- Day 4

Day 4, everyone!

Swimming is a confusing sport.
Because sometimes you do it for fun, and other times you do it to not die.
Demetri Martin

I'm actually surprised I stunk it up yesterday. 6 cups.

Ok, I'm going to kick it up a notch.

I hereby announce that I will pay $1 to each person who commented on Days 1, 2, and/or 3 for each of the remaining days that I do not drink 8 cups of water. Of course, I will be honest.

So here are some tips that worked for me in the past when I was AWESOME at hydration:
  • Drink 2 cups of water as soon as you wake.
  • Drink 2 cups after working out (if you work out in the morning) or an hour after breakfast. This should have you halfway through your water before noon.
  • Don't carry a water bottle around to "sip the whole day long." When you remember to drink water, get 6 to 8 good chug-a-lugs in! (That measures to about a cup of water for me.)
  • At 3 or 4pm when you start craving "a little snack" before your husband gets home, chug a cup or two in. Wait 10 minutes then decide if you want to still snack.

Go at it with the enthusiasm it deserves!