Monday, July 30, 2007

August Announcements

This was supposed to be Steve’s blog, but he’s busy working on selling our car. So here are our August announcements:

You’re going down, Dejo!

Steve and I are engaging in a little friendly competition to see who can raise more money for the Climb to Conquer Cancer on August 18. Choose you sides wisely. Remember who provides you hours of entertaining blogging per week and who can’t be bothered to post…

Click here to donate to Team Rachel (Yay! Woo hoo! Way to go!)

Click here to donate to Team Steve (Boo! Hiss!)

Expect this to be the biggest battle since Kristin/LC.


From the couple that brought you, “Sorry, we just became vegetarians!” right before the delicious Easter ham comes another crazy way to make things difficult for you to be our hosts. For the entire month of August, we have decided to go vegan. Just for curiosity's sake. So that means no cheese, no eggs, no yogurt, no milk, no ice cream, very few baked goods, no butter, well you get the picture… I don’t think this one will be a permanent lifestyle change, but who knows?!

In the mean time we will be eating lots of tofu stir-fy, brown rice, veggies, fruits, black beans, and vegan protein bars. Oh, and soy cheese pizza. Aren’t you so excited to hang out with us?

P.S. This happens to coincide with Bryan and Colleen’s three months of no sweets, so if we’re all really cranky, you may need to throw us a donut.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Rachel’s Nostalgia Part 2

Last night we stayed up far later than we should have watching old music videos with Bryan and Colleen (and also making hotel reservations for our trip to Fort Collins). Watching these videos brought back so many memories. Here’s a few (hey, if Steve can get away with it all the time, I can do it once in a while):

When we were living in Oakland, Nebraska, MTV was not an option on cable. Interestingly enough, they did get MTV in Burwell, Nebraska… Maybe the sandhills were more progressive. In any case, every time the cable bill would come, my dad would send it in with the words “I WANT MY MTV!” written in perfect capital letters on the bottom of the statement. To my knowledge, they never responded.

Yesterday Steve described a conversation that he had with a co-worker that went something like this:

Co-worker: Are you mormon? (For the second time, because Steve gives off a vibe, he’s clean-cut, 23 and married).
Steve: No, some of my family is, but I’m not.
Co-worker: Well then are you Christian?
Steve: I don’t know.
Co-worker: [Looking confused]
Steve: Well, I’m not an atheist, I don’t know if I’d call myself an agnostic, it’s complicated.

I had a similar conversation when I went to the ER for my killer ear/sinus infection back in January:
Nurse: What’s your religion?
Me: Uhhh…
Nurse: [Looking at me like this question should not be that hard.] You can just leave it blank if you want.
Me: Ok. [Sorry I can’t answer complicated, existential questions when I’m in blinding pain.]

Now I know what you’re thinking. What does this have to do with a crappy Britney Spears video? Long story short, I was still going to youth group at Trinity after my dad left. I had a lot of friends there that I wasn’t quite ready to part with. But then, the day came when we watched some “Christian” documentary about the evils of popular music or something like that. I distinctly remember them showing this video and blurring out the tiny bit of her cleavage that shows when she does the lean-y chair thing. And all I could think was, “This is so stupid. This is what you care about. Not helping people in need. Not inspiring people to live in peace. Not finding a way to love our enemies. No. We care more about Britney’s ta-tas.” And looking back, that’s when me and church reluctantly parted ways. But what can I say? I grew up watching “The Making of the SI Swimsuit Edition” with my pastor.

And a non-video one:

When we were looking at restaurants in Fort Collins, it was a strange combination of the more familiar west coast chains and some of the stranger mid-western ones. For example, people in Arizona don’t think that Taco John’s sounds like good Mexican food. Then we came across Runza. I never ate ground beef, so I didn’t exactly grow up on Runza, but I definitely knew it existed.

Well, Bryan, Colleen, and Steve reacted with shrieks of horror when they saw this meat-filled concoction. “Like, seriously, it’s just that much ground beef with a little bit of bread." I always thought they were gross, but I figured it was just my aversion to ground beef in general. The mid-west is a strange animal. Luckily there are lots of vegetarian options in the FC (which is what I am calling Fort Collins from now on) as well.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

My strange brain which leads us to nostalgia part 4

It is not uncommon for me to get a song stuck in my head. It happens to everyone. What is weird though is that I often get the same song stuck in my head; a song that I haven't heard in probably over 10 years. I found myself whistling the song today. It must have had a tremendous impact on me.

I don't get the whole song stuck in my head, just the chorus.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Can’t we all just get along? - or - Damned Republicans

I was just sent a link to a YouTube clip about loving and remembering our soldiers. And I realized that my first all-consuming thought was incredibly defensive. “Just because I don’t love war, people just assume that I hate all U.S. soldiers? Because I don’t want them to be killed right and left in a bloody civil war in a country that seems to have no desire to become the kind of democracy that we deem best, that means I don’t like them? Are you kidding me?”

At first I was angry about the stereotype, but then I realized, by and large, I’d be most of these political stereotypes are true. I am a tree-hugging, touchy-feely, granola-type who is overly optimistic and doesn’t want poor little animals to get hurt and doesn’t think that if two guys get married it will somehow make what me and Steve have less special. And I do see the conservatives as being two stereotypical groups - rich people who feel that they deserve to be rich more so than anyone else and have no desire to help anyone else out, and the yokels who drive gas guzzlers and are too dumb to see how their love of guns and God is being exploited by the rich bastards to have their will done in the government. And for a lot of the conservatives I’ve met, that’s pretty accurate.

But there are a few areas where I feel that both sides could stand to move beyond their stereotypes:

1. The environment. Taking care of our earth should be a global priority. What is the downside of taking care of the planet again? I’ve heard people argue that global warming isn’t real or that the left is just over-reacting, but I have never heard anyone say that taking steps towards being eco-friendly would be in any way detrimental. So how ‘bout we all just say, “Better safe than sorry,” trade-in our Hummer, change our light bulbs, and turn off the shower when we shave our legs.

2. Our soldiers. Now, you won’t see me sticking an American flag bumper sticker on the back of our car in some shallow attempt to show my patriotism, but I will support better medical facilities, educational benefits, and compensation for our soldiers. Since we appreciate them so much, why don’t we show them by improving their quality of life? More liberal bias: I would also like to give them the ultimate gift of letting them return home to their families. To me the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan make about as much sense as kicking a beehive because you got stung by a bee. And what do we expect the end result to be? Everything becomes all puppies and rainbows? They all start listening to Kenny Chesney and chewing tobacco and driving Ford trucks? They all embrace Jesus Christ as their personal savior and send us all their oil for free? I just don’t get it.

3. Health care. I haven’t seen Sicko yet, and I know what most of you think of Michael Moore. But regardless of his methods, he does have a point. As a nation, the health of our citizens should be a priority. Instead, we are the only developed nation that doesn’t offer comprehensive health care. And when one hospital stay without insurance costs more than a house, I feel like something is out of balance.

4. God/religion/spirituality. When did God become a member of the republican party? Maybe he just made a mistake and checked the wrong box when he was renewing his driver’s license? In any case, you’re not going to convince me that you’re more spiritually enlightened than I am just because you’re pro-life but cheer when Iraqis die because "It's better them than us," like God is thinking, "Whew, I'm glad it wasn't just a white person that was killed." And you’re not going to be able to convince me that Jesus would have wanted us to allow concealed weapons without a permit either. The truth is that no one should get a corner on the higher power market because it’s a very personal (not partisan) issue. And if one day you’re smiling down from heaven, while I’m burning in hell, bully for you. You can be as smug as you want then. But in this realm, maybe you could refrain from placing liberal Christians, Buddhists, or people who just feel an undefinable spiritual connection in the same category as demons. And just for doing that, I won't automatically place conservative Christians in the same category as Ann Coulter (who actually is a demon).

5. Education. I believe that every citizen should have the right to a quality education. It could be public, private, religious, secular, academic, or experiential. But, what I don’t agree with is rendering the public institutions ineffective by taking away all of their instruction time and replacing it with standardized tests. Quickly, who remembers the difference between a cumulus and a nimbus cloud (no Wikipedia)? Who remembers how algebraic matrices worked? No one? Now, who remembers doing school plays, having story time in the library, and making baking soda and vinegar volcanoes? Which inspired you to want to learn, getting a below average grade on a standardized test or having a teacher who was exciting and different and hands-on, and helped you find the best way for you to learn? Isn’t education really about inspiring people to want to learn and allowing them access to the information? Because no matter how much we try to beat it into these kids, they still have to want to do it for themselves. Just like rehab.

Ok, I think that’s all the thinking I can do for a Friday. Sorry if I implied that any of you were yokels.

Friday, July 13, 2007

I lied...

...I can't keep quiet for this long (stop laughing Mom and Dad). I have too much to say. And Steve may actually be doing some work today.

On California

I had a really good time, besides some saltwater/boardshort chafing and The Little Inn by the Overpass accusing us of stealing towels.

Wednesday - Went to beach, ate at an awesome place called Selma's. They had deep dish pizza, but I got pasta, which has got to be a first for me. Then watched fireworks over the ocean. We decided it must be a "red" beach because they kept talking about celebrating our freedom from terrorism, as opposed to say, freedom of speech or religion. Still fun.

- We decided this could be the last pre-kid time we go to Disneyland. Not that we're having kids soon, but that may be the next time it happens. We woke up at 5 to get to the park early and thanks to Nate's amazing FastPass strategizing, we got to go on everything, most things twice. We took a mid-afternoon nap in the car and managed to stay until 11 until our aching legs gave out.

Friday - Slept in, then headed south. Had lunch at Del Mar pizza and got to see a live version of Laguna Beach. It went something like this:

Boy: Your swimsuit is too small.
Girl: Shut up. You make me feel bad. (Proceeds to jiggle swimsuit top for 15 minutes, then walks to other boy.
Girl: Aaron's my only friend.

Other snobby girls walk in and they all give eachother snotty fake "hi"s. Makes me glad I'm not a real girl

We then proceeded to Seaport Village and walked around, then went to the Padre's game at Petco Park. Our seats were VERY high up, which was not Nate's favorite. But it was a really cool park and we had an awesome view of the city at sunset.

Saturday - We went to do my Hollywood toursit-y stuff. But after sitting in painful traffic and having to navigate giant crowds, I have to say that it wasn't really all it was cracked up to be. Another obvious newsflash from me, LA IS DIRTY! Then we headed home.

On us

I think we really confuse people because we got married young, I wasn't pregnant, and we're not weirdly religious. On top of that we got married in Vegas, but not in a chapel. We're freaks, I know.

On dashed hopes and dreams

We were on a walk behind our apartments the other night and saw a really awesome house for sale. It was very nice, but not like anything you'd see on Cribs. It was listed at just $699,000. Which one of us was supposed to be making the big bucks again?

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Lots to say...

...but I'm refusing to blog until Steve blogs. And not just another YouTube clip. I want something profound. I'm tired of carrying our entire blogging relationship.

Monday, July 2, 2007


In less than 48 hours, Steve, Nate, and I will descend on California to do all kinds of fun California things - like eat, look at the ocean, possibly go on some kind of boat with an oar or paddle, maybe look at animals of some variety, and umm... Ok, I guess we really have no idea what were doing there. Besides, of course, having a wicked good time.

The truth is, the destination really isn't that important to me. I'm just looking forward to spending some time with my best friend in the world and that other guy I'm married to (just kidding, Stevie). I'm sure we'll have an awesome time because we always do.

I think I want to do some tacky tourist attractions this time, like Grauman's Chinese theater, the Hollywood sign, get a map to the stars, etc. It's lame I know, but it might make for funny stories later about the crazy people we would meet. And I want to ride Pirates of the Caribbean. FYI, if the plastic Captain Jack Sparrow goes missing after we visit, if wasn't me. Really.

Side note: Epic Movie was the worst movie ever. I don't know why I'd have to tell you that because you already know. We thought it would be good for the occasion. Long story.

Another side note: Why doesn't Steve blog anymore? I KNOW he's not working THAT hard.

Ok, that's all I've got for now!