We've been acting as a door service for the last several minutes. It's been cold enough that the heater needs to be on, but Page keeps begging to go into the backyard. At first, we'd just turn off the heater and leave the door open for Page to come and go as she pleased, but today we got complained at, so we figured hey, as long as we're right next to the door, she can just come back and ask to be let in. Oh, but it was so hard! She went outside and we closed the door on her, and at first she came right back, like, "Hey! What happened?" but then she figured out what was going on and was cool with it. She found a spot on the back porch and just sat there, and we were so afraid that she felt abandoned or something! We even opened the door and called out to her just to make sure she was okay, and she mostly ignored us, so she probably was.
In the meantime, Mojo had been shut in the bedroom with the cat door (which Page seems determined not to figure out), so when he heard the other door open, he figured it was a good time to leave through the cat door and come in through the regular door so he could get some food. And so the door has just been opening and closing. Eventually Mojo decided he wanted to be outside and Page decided she wanted to be inside, so the door is closed and everybody is happy and not freezing anymore (except maybe Mojo, but he brought that on himself).
As for us, the work mix-up continues, so hopefully we're not going to be in too much trouble this weekend. The project is due at the beginning of next week, which is exactly when we're planning to be at Disneyland (and then checking out an apartment or two). We told the boss people that our schedule was unstable!
Today I'm thankful for the lovely Christmas tree ornaments that the Relief Society president crocheted for everyone, Page finally agreeing that it's too cold outside (now she's sitting on Athena's lap), finally getting a way to get more yellow gensos in Pictologica, having an idea that might work for the Christmas party program, and Page still loving us even after we closed the door on her.
Today was supposed to be jam-packed with busyness, but the work mix-up continues, and so we were less busy than we thought. We did work on UQ Holder!, and probably used the word "awesome" more times in this one chapter than any translation I can think of, except maybe previous chapters of UQ Holder!. Tota's just the type to say "awesome" a lot, and frankly, I like that about him. (We also like to have him use "totally" a lot, because it has his name in it, and he's totally the type to like words for reasons like that.)
Speaking of UQ Holder!, I wonder if we're the only ones who saw a connection between the Wrecking Ball and the last airbender.
In a total change of subject, our nephew came over last night and was super adorable, as usual. Mom and Steve got a Christmas dinosaur to put on the lawn, and it's super cute and animated!, and even though we don't understand the dinosaur obsession at all, it's heartwarming to see Logan go up to it and pet it. He also found a string of beads decorating the Christmas tree and for some reason decided it was a great new toy. So he pulled it off the tree and...I don't even know what he did with it, but apparently it was pretty fun.
Sarah told us about how they've been watching Psych at her place again, and Logan likes to sing along with the "I know you know" part of the theme song (only he sings "I know I know"). Now that they're watching it again, he's singing along with one more line of the song--the line that has the vocabulary you don't really want a two-year-old singing (unless you're the type of person who thinks little kids swearing is hilarious). Mom heard the story and said, "Logan, you are the best." Apparently she's that type.
Today I'm thankful for the delicious muddy buddies we got to eat last night, getting to spend time with the sister and nephews, not being as busy today as we thought we'd be, Page not feeling the need to spend a lot of time outside today (it's cold out there!), and characters that are the type to say "awesome."
A mix-up at work left us with a day of not so much work! So instead of being super productive, we were a little productive, and then we got caught up playing games on the iPad.
But now, I have more manga to talk about!( Part XLII: Portrait of M & NCollapse )
Today I'm thankful for knowing that evidence exists that an American Southern accent is an acceptable Kansai dialect equivalent, having time to play on the iPad today, Page coming inside so we could turn the heater on, having plans to make Muddy Buddies tonight, and getting to watch more Burn Notice last night.
We've had a really hard time getting back into a normal routine lately. ...Lately, she says, as if it hasn't been ongoing for weeks. The difference is, we had normal work to do, so we thought we'd be able to have a normal work schedule with it, too. But today our plans have been thwarted...but always by things that we could have avoided.
For example, I didn't have to take that phone call. See, on Sunday, we were feeling way stressed out about the whole moving thing, because we can't get down south to look at apartments until next week, and in the meantime, we were looking at apartment reviews online, which is always a pretty dumb idea, actually, because very few people write an apartment review unless they're very upset about their apartment situation. To prove the theory, we even looked up reviews of our last apartment complex, and even though we really liked it there, there were a bunch of terrible reviews (including reviews that complained about the maintenance, which we always felt was wonderful). So we knew that online apartment reviews aren't a fair judge of apartment complexes. Nevertheless, now we were more stressed out, and that's where Sister VN found us when she gave us a ride home from church.
So she invited us over to her house to talk and have cookies and get priesthood blessings, and we accepted. While all that happened, it came up that we just needed to get into our own space ASAP. So Brother VN called someone who used to be in the ward, who also has an apartment he's looking to rent. He was already asleep because of time zone stuff, but he called back, and it turns out there are a couple of other parties looking to rent the space...including, it turns out, our sister's family. We had calmed down considerably since Sunday night, so when Brother VN called this morning to tell us about it, we were more amused than anything else. It would be a good place for them.
The other thing that interrupted our work schedule was an invitation to go to Target. We did a color matching kind of thing online and determined that we should be fairly safe buying things in jewel tones, so we wanted to go buy sweaters. And we did! Yay! And now we have more long-sleeved tops to wear. We also found a super adorable hoodie to get for Logan, and we were going to give it to him right away, but when we went to his home, he was asleep. But it's just as well, because now he can get it for Christmas. Hopefully he won't be over Curious George by then.
Today I'm thankful for having more sweaters, super adorable toddler hoodies, managing to get our work done despite interruptions, Page coming inside when we ask her to, and getting to watch more Burn Notice last night.
This has been another weekend of feeling very escapist. ...Well, escapism and having family over. Sarah brought her family over yesterday and we enjoyed each other's company. We were reminded once again what a very helpful boy Logan is. Sometime after they arrived, we remembered we needed to put some laundry in the dryer, so Athena went to do that. Logan saw her and said, "I wan(t to) he(lp)." So she put the clothes on the open door/lid of the dryer, and he helped by shoving the clothes into the dryer proper.
His mother also told us that she made sweet potato casserole for her in-laws' Thanksgiving feast, and Logan helped her put marshmallows on top. Awwww. (Apparently he did a pretty good job, too!)
Today we went to another Christmas party planning meeting. The menu is Mexican-inspired, so for the activity/entertainment, we thought we'd do a miniature version of Las Posadas
. Athena and I got put in charge of it, because we were the only ones who thought it sounded like a simple thing to do instead of some crazy ambitious project, but now we're faced with the problem of coming up with a way to make a presentation out of it. We can't go with the usual song they sing for Las Posadas for a few reasons, but mostly because it's in Spanish. We do have several people in the ward who know Spanish, but we're pretty sure the majority doesn't. So now we have to come up with our own way to tie the procession together and hopefully include some Christmas carols that the ward does know.
There was also some concern shown about the safety of using a pinata at the finale, but we've dealt with kids and pinatas before, so we're pretty confident we can handle it.
Today I'm thankful for people finally being on board with the Las Posadas idea, having a good time with Sarah & Co. yesterday, getting to try Papa John's mega cookie (so good!), having a book to help us research our Scots-Irish ancestry, and Ricky Gervais's celebrity lullaby to Elmo.
We hope everyone had a happy Thanksgiving! We did, too! We spent it at home, working, playing video games, and watching TV. We had three different invitations to join various groups for their feasts, but we declined, because we were kind of like, "Please, please, please let us be not social." It was nice, and we had a lot of fun working, too. In fact, we need to work some more, because we have no idea what our schedule is going to be like, what with the trying to move and everything. So when we're done with this, it will be back to work again.
We watched The Lorax last night, and it was interesting contrasting it with Frozen. The former had a much simpler story, so it was able to spend more time on the characters' interactions and emotions...not that Frozen doesn't spend time on that, just that...I don't know, it was weird.
Anyway, speaking of Frozen, I did want to write a proper post about it, although I'm not sure I want to do that right now. I'll just write some now, I guess.
See, the main problem I had with Frozen was completely of my own making. Well, almost completely. The point is, I went into it with a predisposition toward the movie. First, there was the trailer that had me exceedingly annoyed at Olaf (compounded by a phone call from Gaston, where he mentioned Olaf's part in the holiday World of Color show, saying he was "frickin' hilarious"; somehow, this had me even more annoyed).
Second, there was Anna. I had a predisposition toward her, which was made even more unfair by the fact that I deliberately tried not to read all the information that caused the predisposition. One of our Disney news sources quoted Kristen Bell (the actress who voiced her) as saying something about how she always dreamed of being a Disney princess, but she hated how they were all so perfect. We didn't want to read the whole quote for fear of spoilers, which was probably a bad idea because now we don't have the whole context of what Ms. Bell said, but I did see something about making gagging noises, which I took to be a reference again to the "too perfect" princesses. So I was annoyed at her.
She also claimed that Anna was the first adorkable Disney princess, and we totally disagree--Rapunzel is totally adorkable. Athena said that as she watched Frozen, she was reminded of something, and the best she could come up with is that Anna is actually a lot like Mulan. Interesting parallel: when Mulan came out in theaters, the actor who voiced Shang went on the Rosie O'Donnell and bragged that Shang was the first Disney character with nipples. But the very first (in a full-length feature--I couldn't say about shorts) was Chernabog (Fantasia), but since he was probably referring to Pocahontas and Aladdin characters, you could say he meant "since Disney movies got good again," which is still wrong, because King Triton had nipples in The Little Mermaid, as did Quasimodo (The Hunchback of Notre Dame), whose movie came out after Pocahontas but before Mulan.
Aaanyway. Mulan and Rapunzel are totally adorkable, too. Unless I'm mistaken on the meaning of adorkable, which is entirely possible.
The point is, as a holier-than-thou Disney know-it-all, I was annoyed at the holier-than-thou I perceived in Anna's voice actress (whether it was actually there or not).
And I think I was mostly able to get over all that stuff, which means that the movie definitely had some quality. But I'll talk more in detail about that later, because I still have work to do.
Today I'm thankful for getting to spend some time with Page, getting to see The Lorax, having a lovely Thanksgiving, Page coming inside so we can close the door, and getting to listen to music while we work.
Oh man, this week. Mom and Steve left for their annual Thanksgiving reunion last night, which is why we didn't update--we spent the day trying to avoid being underfoot while they made all their last-minute preparations. Then today we went and made plans to see Frozen, so we ended up being out most of the day and haven't had any time to enjoy being in (temporarily) our own space.
As for Frozen...oh my goodness, I have so many things to say. Overall, the thought is, "I...think I liked it." We didn't love it, but we didn't hate it. But I still needed to come home and rant for a while, because I didn't know who wrote the music until we read the credits. The songs were written by the same team that did the Book of Mormon musical, and while we understand that the Gospel is all about forgiveness and we shouldn't judge someone's current work on something they did in the past, we're still uncomfortable with the idea that Disney, a company we grew up loving in large part because their movies reinforced all the things we learned in Sunday school, is repeatedly hiring people (they did the songs for Winnie the Pooh 2011) who made a name for themselves by mocking our deeply cherished beliefs.
So I've had some pent-up energy that (surprise surprise) is not really being alleviated by fighting Heartless in Kingdom Hearts [chi].
As for my feelings on the music, the songs were...I don't know. I didn't love them. Some of them were cute, and there were parts of some of them that were really great ("we finish each others..." "Sandwiches!"), but they seemed to be kind of lacking in heart or something. Maybe it was a pacing thing, because the movie seemed to be "song song song song song STORY!" Even before we knew who did the music, it got to a point where we would groan whenever someone's voice took on a musical tone, and it's not even because we didn't like the songs. It was because I felt like we weren't really getting anywhere with the characters...which is strange, because that's what the songs are supposed to do. And, thinking about it, the songs did reveal some emotion, but often they were emotions that didn't even necessarily manifest themselves in the character at all after that (perfect example: "Let It Go" performed by Elsa).
Then Kristoff showed up, and finally we felt like the movie got started.
And the rest of my thoughts are spoilery and/or long, and I really just want to curl up and watch TV or play video games or something, so I'll save them for later.
After the movie, we had lunch at Denny's, where the Hobbit-inspired honey cake French toast was really really good. When we went up to the register to pay for our food, I really needed to use the restroom, and it was looking like the cashier was busy, so Celeste's husband told me to just go because there was definitely time, and by the time I got back, he'd paid for everything. He tricked me into letting him pay for lunch!
Today I'm thankful for getting to see Frozen, those super delicious maple candies we got at the fancy candy store by the movie theater, Olaf being much less annoying than the trailers led us to believe (but now that we've looked up the cast, we have a hard time with him for other reasons; we're (sort of) trying to get over it), Celeste and her husband buying us lunch, and it being time to enjoy having the house to ourselves.
Today is turning out to be one busy Sunday, which wouldn't be a problem at all except that we stayed up too late last night, and we have no one to blame but ourselves. That's okay; we're soldiering through it.
It started with eight o'clock choir practice, because the choir was performing today. I only mention it, because I feel the need to tell everyone about the page-turn mishap that occurred during the performance. I turned the page, and the whole thing of music fell off the piano! Fortunately, that wasn't an entirely uncommon thing when I was practicing, so it didn't take too much to get it back in place. The choir just sang a capella for a couple of bars while I got my act together, and nobody noticed.
Then, after church, we had choir practice for our next performance, which will be sometime around Christmas. We don't know if we'll be in town anymore, but when we talked about our plans with the bishop, he said he expected us to perform our callings diligently right up until we leave, so that's what we're a-going to do. We've got a really cool arrangement of "What Child Is This?" (obtained at this site
), and now I may or may not have to figure out what I'm going to do about turning pages (there are seven of them, but we might only use six--the choir director says we're going to skip part B, but I think Athena and I might campaign to change that), and I really really want to practice it because it's super awesome and totally fun to play, but our piano is in storage. Oh well.
In a little over an hour, we're going back to the church to meet with the ward's Christmas party committee, and after that, we may or may not be going to a special fireside meeting about family history work. We failed to RSVP (they needed RSVPs because they're providing dinner), but the Family History Director seems to take it for granted that we'll be at everything. What he does not always take for granted is the fact that we'll need a ride. So we'll just see.
And finally, I wanted to tell about the incident Friday night when we failed to get pulled over by the police. We were driving home from the temple, and Steve wanted to stop by In-N-Out and get a milkshake. On the way there, we passed by a sobriety checkpoint, and since none of us had ever experienced going through one of those, we thought it would be neat to see what it was like. So Steve made a U-turn, and we got in line for the sobriety check. But when we got to the officer directing people to the check area, he just waved us through. We all figured that, coming home from the temple, none of us really looked like major drunken partiers. Either that, or Steve gave off a "designated driver" kind of vibe. We were all a little disappointed, but it was probably for the best.
Today I'm thankful for the choir performance turning out well, having a cool new song to practice, getting to try Puzzle & Dragons last night (though perhaps we shouldn't have), getting to see the new things at the temple, and the choir director bringing cookies to our practice today.
I figure we should probably update LiveJournal, since we haven't in two days. It's not that we didn't want to, just that yesterday came with the usual scheduling difficulties...which pretty much means we were working most of the day and we sometimes like to hide in the bedroom while Mom and Steve eat dinner. And then it was time for movie night.
We've been feeling extremely escapist lately, because we have decided to make Difficult Decisions. I hesitate to talk about them, because I worry that the decisions might fail and then everyone will be like, "I always knew they were a couple of flakes," but on the other hand, maybe talking about it will help solidify our resolve. We think it's time we move close to Disneyland. But it's super hard because we only have a very vague idea of how to find an apartment in the first place, and doing it remotely is more than a little bit scarier. Fortunately, a wise friend of ours (Alice) pointed out that it's not like it has to be permanent, so if we move down there and decide it wasn't a good idea after all, we can do something else.
In the meantime, facing big changes like this makes us want to curl up and play video games all day. Plus the weather's been kinda rainy, which is perfect for staying inside and playing video games. (Not that we wouldn't be staying inside anyway. That's one of the reasons we think it would be good for us to live close to Disneyland--we'd have more motivation to go outside.)
That being the case, it's time to curl up and play video games. ...After a snack.
Today I'm thankful for the lovely rainy weather, having plans to go to the temple tonight, peanuts, having Chex Mix to eat last night, and Page and Mojo playing an adorable game of tag.