Off-Topic Chit Chat

We all know life’s not all about sex.  We want to be well rounded, right?  So here will be some of my favorite subjects aside from sex!



Happy Halloween!    Meow!



Last year about this time I said that I could not wait to see “The Hobbit”.  Well, I thought I would tell you all how much i love,  love, LOVE that movie!  And to my happy surprise, it is a trilogy, also!  Woo hoo!  So while I was quite disappointed not to see Legolas yet (Orlando Bloom, mmmmm), I know he’ll be appearing in one of the other two.  Whenever they come out.  *sigh*



Check out my NEW BOOTS!!!  Soooooo Hotttttt!!!


My baby just did his last Sacrament Meeting Primary program last Sunday.  Boo hoo and YAY!  He’s growing up.   And I am, too, I guess…After this year, no more kids in Primary.    *sniffle*


Got my first tomatoes over the weekend!!!  Woo Hoo!  Soooooo delicious.  There’s nothing like fresh tomatoes straight from the garden.   And the little cherry tomatoes are nature’s candy.  Yummy, yummy!!

This year all I did were tomatoes in my garden.  Too much other stuff going on to have a nice garden like I usually do.  I did have raspberries and strawberries, but thankfully I don’t have to do much to get those!

Anyway, this is just a fraction of the tomatoes I picked, and there are a TON still green.  Can’t wait!!


9/16/12   Gave a  talk in Sacrament Meeting today!  I haven’t given a talk for about six years, but I think I did well.  Who knows if I really did or not, but I was happy with it!  I think the best part may be that I didn’t go over my allotted time and give the second speaker five minutes to give his entire 20 minute talk.  I ended right on time.  Whew!  Then my mom made me come over to her house later and give my talk for her and my dad.  haha!  They liked it, too.

I’d much rather sing!  Oh–I forgot to put this in here:  My daughter is 13 and has been taking piano lessons since she was six years old.  And a few weeks ago I had a solo in Sacrament Meeting and she accompanied me on the piano!!!  Incredible dream come true!!  She’s fantastic.  Such talent.   It is a beautiful thing to see and hear.  


I cannot explain to you why I would eat half a pan of gluten free magic cookie bars over the last three days.  Bad, bad zookie!!!  Okay, I can explain it.  Chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, almonds, peanuts, coconut, need I say more???  Magic cookie bars are some of my favorite things.  Yummmmmmm  🙂

But what’s this?  Muffin top????  Treadmill, here I come.  Groan.

If you want to join me on this particularly lovely calorie fest, let me know and I’ll post the recipe.    Then we can kill ourselves on the treadmill together.   🙂


How was your Labor Day?  I spent it at another mountain, this one north of me,  Mt. Saint Helens.  What a beautiful place!

Next stop–Olympic Peninsula and the rain forest.


My family and I went to Mt. Hood to take in the beauty of the mountain in the summertime.   We went to Timberline Lodge, Mount Hood, Hood River, Oregon

Heading up the mountain.  Timberline Lodge is at 6,000 feet elevation.

People are still skiing the Glacier!  In August!

Mt. Hood is beautiful all year ’round.


Can’t wait to SKI the mountain this winter!!!


This is my very handsome oldest son at the Oregon Coast (you’re gonna have to take my word for it haha!).  Our favorite beach where we go every summer.

More Oregon Coast.  Looking for whales.  We didn’t see any that day.

We did see a cute harbor seal, though  (blurry pic, blah).

Youngest son flying his kite at Boiler Bay…

We love the Oregon Coast!!


7/23/12    I went to Billings, Montana last weekend.  I’ve never been to Montana.  I’ve never been much of a traveler, although I think I’d like to be.  I really, really enjoyed my time in Billings.  It’s a great little city.  It’s smaller than the city I live in, but it has a lot more to offer.  Probably because my city is so close to another major metropolis and that’s the reason we don’t have much here.  Anyway, I found it beautiful and inviting.

At the Rimrocks of Billings, Montana:

Billings, Montana Temple


I love baby carrots.  I love baby carrots because they look like Cheetos.  And they are crunchy like Cheetos.  Too bad they don’t taste like Cheetos!!  *sigh*  Because if I had the luxury, I’d be eating Cheetos all day long, not baby carrots.  hahaha!


3/29/12  I used to hate to run.  What am I saying?  I still hate to run.  But I’ve been running/walking on my treadmill and that is definitely preferable to running outside.  I run/walk while I’m watching O’Reilly.  I know, crazy!   I just say to myself, I will run until Crowley and Combs are done duking it out.  haha!  And then I’ll run until Krauthammer stops talking.  And so on.  Anyway, I’m so excited because today I went the farthest distance in the shortest amount of time so far!   I bumped up my pace and also the length of time for running, and I did it!  Woo hoo!  (if you want to know my pathetic attempts, it’s four miles in 61 minutes, running at least 20 minutes of that.   Don’t laugh at me, okay!  I”m working on it!)


3/28/12  I got tired of the look of my blog.  I really like this new one!


3/20/12  I started reading Les Mis last night.  I’m slightly embarrassed that I haven’t read it yet.  I’m already getting hooked in.  I may not come up for air for a while.  🙂


3/17/12  Happy Saint Patrick’s Day.   I had a wonderful day today!  I went to see Wicked with a lovely friend.  It was AMAZING!!!!!  I loved it soooooo much.  We had a fabulous sushi lunch beforehand–shrimp tempura rolls, spider rolls and some kind of salmon deliciousness roll.  MMMMMMmmmmm!   I love sushi!  We had excellent box seats for Wicked at the Keller Auditorium in Portland.   The music is fabulous, the story is wonderful, the talent is superb.  If you get a chance to see it–DO!!!   I love musicals, plays, etc soooooo much.   My friends generously treated me to my ticket and I feel so fortunate to have been able to go.   I am so grateful to them for their generosity.   I cried my eyes out thanking them for such a wonderful gift.

Then Conan and I went out with my besties for a fun night.  Remember how I said I couldn’t play sports?  Well, we went bowling and I actually bowled a 100!!!!  Do NOT laugh at me.  I’ve never bowled so well in my life.   I actually got two or three strikes and a spare or two!  As Conan is fond of saying, “Even a blind squirrel finds an acorn.”     He’s probably right, because my first game I bowled a 53.  That’s more like my usual bowling abilities. Lots and lots of gutter balls.  They wouldn’t let me use the bumper guards, haha!   I had a super fun evening, laughing and having a great time with my besties.  I couldn’t ask for more!


I’m not sure I can convey to you how much I despise, detest, abhor and loathe (that’s a delicious word–loathe, said low and with the o strung out and dripping with venom and then lots of emphasis on the “the” at the end!)  wrinkles.  I just might sell my soul to the devil to get rid of them and never have them for the rest of my life.

Oh, yeah, this is supposed to be some of my favorite subjects, not the things I hate.  😦  hahaha!!!

Okay, so I really, really like RoC retinol correxion eye cream.  It works great!


Dangerous Games

This is the lingerie I just ordered from Shoe Dazzle.  It’s called Dangerous Games.  Ooooohh.  🙂  Love it and I sooooo hope it looks good on me.  No pics of me to follow haha!


It is the HEIGHT of rudeness for my face to have wrinkles and then the audacity to have a zit.  What the heck???  I’m sure I told my face that zits are for kids.  Sheesh!



Shoe Dazzle!

2/25/12   I just bought these from Shoe Dazzle!  OMG they are so cute and I can’t WAIT to get them and wear them!!!  I’m celebrating my healed pinky toe 🙂  (who cares if I’m 6’1″ in them!)


2/23/12  I broke my pinky toe on my right foot about a month ago when I stubbed it on something I was stepping over in my son’s room.  OUCH!  OMG, it swelled up and turned all purple and black and blue and hurt like crazy for two weeks.  And continued to hurt for another couple weeks.  Finally, FINALLY, it is all healed.  The worst part of breaking my toe was no treadmill for the past month.  Blah. (I still managed to lose a few pounds, so I’m not complaining about it too much!)  So the last few days I’ve been working out again and it feels GREAT to be back on the treadmill, killing myself and sweating my face off!  In addition, I bought a new workout system to help me hit my next goal–the Brazil Butt Lift workouts by Beachbody.    I’ll tell y0u a secret:  I am not much of a dancer.  I have rhythm, but no moves.  🙂  This workout has lots of hip rotating and salsa type dancing.   So while it’s a good workout, I’m not particularly good at it!  It’s a good thing nobody’s watching :).  Anyway, I’ll let you know if I get the butt of my dreams like it advertises.  The way my muscles from hip to knee feel today after doing a couple of the workouts a few times, I’d better!  Woo hoo!


2/8/12     I would like to say that sometimes I need a little something to put my life into perspective.   I’ve been dealing with some emotional issues, and that’s been making me sad and heartsick.  However, my little problems pale in comparison to other people’s.  I have a friend who just lost his job due to massive layoffs at his company.  My sister-in-law is battling cancer.  My dad just lost his sister.   It makes me embarrassed to cry over my little issues.  So no more.  My eyes are off myself  starting right now.   I’m praying for all my friends and loved ones who need help in their lives.  I love them all and want them to be happy.


Getting gifts scored a ZERO in my Five Love Languages quiz.  Just because I don’t need gifts to feel loved doesn’t mean I don’t like getting gifts at all, though!

And I really, really love jewelry.

Here’s what I got for my birthday from my besties and Conan!

All of this is Lia Sophia, my favorite jewelry and practically all I wear.  I LOVE Lia Sophia jewelry and get compliments every time I wear it.

I love, love, LOVE my new jewelry!!



Okay, all you Twilight haters, just give me my moment, okay?  I love Twilight!  (I love lots of things, I’m multi-dimensional.)

I saw Breaking Dawn over the weekend and it was AWESOME!!!!!!!   I went with my mom and my sister and we all enjoyed it.    This installment is the best one, yet.   We wish they would go back and do the first one over again and make it as good as this one.  Oh, well, that’s not going to happen.  😦

Some really fun parts were at the wedding when we got to see the Alaskan vampire ladies, Tanya, Kate and Irina!  They are so great!  Also Stephenie Meyers is one of the wedding guests!  Fun!   But don’t blink, look down, sneeze or anything, or you’ll miss her.  Edward tells Bella about his vampire past and we get to see Edward with blood red eyes going after a human.  CREEPY!  We see Phil!  He doesn’t talk, but we actually see his face twice (if you’re paying close attention, that is).  The wedding was beautiful.  My favorite part was when they are saying their vows and the camera circles around them while the song “Flightless Bird” by Iron and Wine plays, just the same as their first dance at their prom in Twilight.  Beautiful.    The honeymoon scenes were tastefully and well done.  My mom closed her eyes a few times, and I won’t be letting my almost 13-year-old daughter see it, but they were sooooo good!   I loved the birth scene.  They did a fantastic job at that.  I do wish the part where Jacob goes after Rosalie to get her out of  there had been a little better, but we can’t have everything we want, now, can we?  I was very curious to see how they handled the scene when Bella changes to a vampire.   I was perfectly satisfied.  And I loved how it ended.  All in all, nothing but good to say about it!!!

My sister and I can’t wait to see it again!



At church today I saw a baby blessed, a young man fresh from his mission speak, and my daughter and three other girls set apart in their class presidency.

What a privilege it is for that young father to be able to bless his child.  What a beautiful experience it was to watch those young girls set apart with their fathers participating in the circle.  Two of the girls were set apart by their own fathers.

I felt so thankful and proud of the young man fresh off his mission, willing to sacrifice two years of his life, and so much more, to spread the gospel.

Even more so, though, I believe, are the families of these men privileged and blessed.  As I looked at that young father blessing his little baby daughter, a little nervous, stumbling a bit over his words, I felt a surge of love for men, in particular our priesthood holders, and all they do for their families and their ward families.  Watching the slightly older dads, who’ve had a bit more experience with blessings, setting apart their daughters made me proud to know them.

These men try hard to be good husbands and fathers and worthy priesthood holders.  They serve in their wards and stakes in all kinds of callings, some big and some small, but all of them done to help and serve all of us.  They work hard to provide for their families, sometimes working two jobs, sometimes traveling and being away from their families for days at a time.  You guys are awesome!!!

I’ve learned a lot about guys over the last few years, about how they think and feel.  Learning these things about men has given me a deep appreciation of all of you guys.

To you men I’ve just described, I want you to know how fortunate your wives and children are to have you in their lives.  No one is perfect, but if you are trying hard to fulfill your roles as priesthood holders, providers, presiders and protectors, you are my heroes.

I often have a little prayer in my heart for you and your marriages, that you’ll be happy and your marriages will thrive.

Thanks guys!





Breaking Dawn comes out today!!!  Woo hoo!  I am super excited to see the movie.   I’m not going until NEXT WEEKEND.  I know, right???!!!  I’m going with my sister and my mom and that’s the first time we can all go together.  Oh, well, anticipation is good, right?  I am staying completely away from anything to do with the movie.  I don’t want to know what anyone else thinks of it, if it was good, bad or indifferent, until after I’ve seen it.   I know I’m going to love it no matter what, but I don’t want to have any preconceived ideas.

Team Edward!



Last weekend Conan and I went up to Kirkland, Washington to see Jim Brickman in concert.  This was my Valentine’s Day, anniversary, birthday and Christmas present all in one.  We had a wonderful weekend!  It takes about three hours to get there from where we live.  We enjoyed each other’s company, we talked, and I relaxed and read my book, The Amber Spyglass, last book in The Golden Compass trilogy.  What a great book and a great ending to a great trilogy.  Great!  haha!  Now I’m trying to talk my kids into reading the trilogy.

We stopped off in Kent, Washington to meet Conan’s sister and new boyfriend for dinner, and then we went to an event with them that I never imagined I’d attend.  In fact, I’d never even heard of it before!  We went to a Lingerie Football League game and watched the Seattle Mist play the Las Vegas Sin.

We had so much fun!  Our seats were in the end zone, and you can imagine the view from there.  Well, all the guys were really enjoying it, I’m telling you!  Every time they’d line up and get ready to do whatever it is they do in football when they are getting ready to make a play the guys were in bliss!  There were cameras everywhere, zooming in on their derrieres.  I had my camera, too, of course!!

There were fans there with signs rooting for their favorite ladies,  many fans were wearing the team colors, and although we didn’t imbibe, the beer was flowing freely.  It was a great big party.   We cheered right along with everyone else.  Fun!  Those girls don’t mess around, either, they are seriously tough.

Saturday was the Jim Brickman concert.

The Kirkland Performance Center is a small theater with only 400 seats.


See the guy to the right with the bald head?  No, that’s not Conan, but that’s kind of where we were, only we were on row F.  The theater was so small and intimate it felt like I could reach out and touch Jim!  The sound from his piano filled the room and washed over me in waves.  He was incredible.  His music is peaceful, beautiful, soul stirring.   I am an emotional person.  I FEEL things very strongly.  I love music more than just about anything, and I feel it, too.  If I hear beautiful music, I will cry.  And I did cry more than once at the concert.  I kept saying, Oh, this is my favorite!  No, wait, this is my favorite! This one is really, really one of my favorites.  It’s called Night Rain.  I cried when he played it.  His music is incredible live.  And if his music wasn’t enough, he and his guest soloist were both very entertaining in between songs.  Even Conan had a great time and admitted that the concert was very good.

Later that night we went to The Lucky 7 Saloon for dinner and to watch the Huskies get the crap beat out of them by the evil Ducks.  Boo, hiss.  That put a damper on things for a bit, but Conan made it through and we went back to the hotel room where I did my best to make Conan forget the previous two and a half hours.  Did I say already that I forgot my own name?  Well, I did.  😉

On the drive home Sunday Mt. Rainier was looking beautiful.  I couldn’t get a good shot of it, because we were flying down the freeway and the trees kept getting in the way.  This is the best I could do.

I know, terrible.  But it looked like Mount Olympus floating in the clouds there.  Here’s a pic I stole from the internet to give you an idea of what it really looked like for us. I got it from Seattle Photos by Tim Knight.  He’s good! (That’s Mount Baker peeking out behind Mount Rainier.)

Later on down the freeway I discovered something I’ve never seen before, even after countless times driving up and down I-5.  I’m either asleep, reading my book, it’s dark, or we fly past it so fast I never noticed it.  This time, however, there was a random traffic jam and we came to a stop right next to the Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge.

It’s in or near Olympia, and I am so excited to have discovered it.  It looks very pretty!   Next time we will stop there and enjoy for a while.  (Can’t really believe I never knew about it before now!  What a bad native I am.)

We had a wonderful weekend and were relaxed and rejuvenated and ready for home, kids and work.

If Jim Brickman ever gets anywhere near me again, I’ll be going to see him again, that is for sure!!!


10/24/11   Twice a month I drive out to a hotel property in the Columbia River Gorge to do admin work.  Here is the beautiful view of the Columbia River I have from the property.  I took this picture today with my phone.  That’s how beautiful it is in the Gorge, that a simple phone could take such a great shot.  

Here’s another breathtaking view from the Washington side of the Gorge.  We rarely get such a treat as these incredible fall colors, due to it being to wet and rainy, usually.  You can’t see it very well in this shot, unless you know what to look for, but in the distance there’s a big huge rock  (848 feet tall) right on the river’s edge.  It’s called Beacon Rock.  It’s the core of a volcano that was spewed out about a bajillion years ago.


9/8/11  Conan and I were discussing the new Conan movie.  I said I thought the new Conan looked pretty nice.  My Conan said, no way, Arnold was the best.  So I looked up some pics of Arnold as Conan.  And my Conan was right.  Arnold made a VERY NICE Conan.  Who is the best one?


I just finished reading Water For Elephants.  I have to admit that I picked up the book because Robert Patinson was on the cover, I know, I know, I’m so shallow.  But anyway, there it is, and there he was, and I just had to have it.  The book itself is actually a fabulous read!   It’s a historical fiction novel set around the time of the Depression about a young man who is about to graduate as a vet from Cornell when he learns that his parents were killed in a car accident.  He then learns that there is no money; his father was a vet, also, and hadn’t been making people pay for quite some time and had mortgaged the house to keep Jack in school.  He is overwhelmed by all this and just takes off walking.  He is by some railroad tracks and on a whim jumps into a passing car.  It turns out he has jumped into a circus train.  And his adventures begin.  The story is told first person, by Jack, now in his 90’s at an adult care center.  I really enjoyed that part of the book.  It’s not often that the elderly are portrayed in a positive light, but this book really shows Jack as a strong man, who just happens to be older.

Has anyone else read this?  Did you like it?


9/6/11   I cannot seem to pick a style for my blog and keep it.  I liked the last one, but there was no place for my “About” and “Fun Stuff” tabs.  Not that  those are a big deal, but still…

I kind of like this new one, though.


8/17/11  I just had to change the look of my blog again, because I just found another blog called Mormon Missionary Position, Sex and the Latter Day Saint.  And it had the exact same look as mine.  Too weird.  So I changed mine!


7/28/11  Want a fabulous salad/side dish to take to your summer potluck?  Try this Quinoa Pilaf.  It’s a huge hit with my family and friends.

Super healthy, delicious, and nobody else is going to duplicate your dish.  Yummmm!


7/27/11  Is it wrong to call someone in a forum a douchebag, basement dwelling troll?  It is?  Darn.  I will refrain.


7/27/11  Did I tell you I like to rearrange my furniture?  I love doing that.  And changing the look of my blog is fun, too!  Enjoy the new look.  Until I change it again, of course!


7/24/11  We had a fabulous Sacrament Meeting today, the speakers were wonderful!  But the best part was the musical number.   We had a male/female duet, and the man played the guitar and sang.  They did a fantastic rendition of  “Come, Come, Ye Saints”. Tears came to my eyes!  Anyway, that was the first time I’ve seen a guitar played in Sacrament Meeting, and I LOVED it!!  I was thrilled to have a guitar in Sacrament Meeting.  Am I a heretic?


7/21/11  Check this out:

At our last Relief Society meeting one of the sisters demonstrated how to do a 72 hour kit in a milk jug.  I thought it was pretty cool!!  I think I’ll do these as Christmas gifts this year for people’s cars.  Do you think that’s lame?


7/16/11  I am feeling nostalgic today.    Went to see Harry Potter 7 last night.  It was very well done.  I’m feeling a little sad, though, that it’s all over!  I started reading these books, and reading these books to my kids, more than ten years ago.  Because of the way my kids are spaced, I read them aloud twice.  Once to the oldest, and then again, later, to the younger two.  Then my kids have and are reading them themselves.  I’ve also read them just for myself, more than once!  We can all read them again, of course, and watch the movies again, but there’s no more to look forward to!  Boo hoo.

Then, today is the last day of Cub Scout Day Camp for my youngest, and this will be his last Day Camp, as next year he’ll be an 11-year-old Scout.  I didn’t think this would bother me, but, yeah, it’s kinda bothering me!!  Where’d my baby go???


6/24/11   Conan and I are very, very different in our likes and dislikes.  One of the most glaring differences is in sports.  I could not care less about something.  Sports are near and dear to Conan’s barbaric heart.  Yesterday was the NBA Draft.   I could not understand why the audience was booing that Stern guy ( I almost said Howard Stern, but I’m pretty sure that’s not right)  in New York and cheering that other guy in Jew Jersey every time they got up to announce another draft pick.  Conan says that’s just what they do in New York.   Anyway, I asked him if he was happy with the draft picks this year and he looked at me like I was from, well, not Mars, but maybe Venus?? ha ha!  I’ve never asked him about it before, and I guess my showing that spark of interest in one of his things was quite shocking to him!!!  Turns out he was “meh” about the draft this year.   He did point out that the young man from BYU that everyone is so worked up about got drafted.  Woo hoo and go Mormons!  There.  Did I show enough enthusiasm?  🙂


Have you seen the Conan the Barbarian movie previews?  The movie looks  good!  I have to say, this Conan is pretty easy on the eyes.  My own Conan looked much more like Arnold Schwarzenegger did in his hey day!  Lots and lots of muscles.  Mmmmmm.  That’s why that’s his nickname.   I have awakened a monster, though, because now MY Conan wants to put a Conan tattoo on his arm.  The crazy lunatic 🙂


6/6/11  If you are a Twilight hater, just ignore this little blurb.

My Twilight obsession has been dormant for quite awhile now, but it just came raging to life!  The first Breaking Dawn movie trailer came out and I just watched it for the first time.   Can you hear me screaming like a teenager girl?  Well, I am, ha ha!  My daughter thinks I’ve finally gone off the deep end.

Watch it with me here  over and over.


And speaking of The Lord of the Rings (oh, you didn’t know I was speaking of The Lord of the Rings?  I’m always speaking of it!!) Orlando Bloom is going to be in the Hobbit movie as Legolas!!!  Yay, yay, yay!!!  Oh, he’s soooo pleasant to look at!  Is there any way I can now wait until 2012 to see this movie???  What if the Mayans are right?  There are several books and movies I am dying to see and read coming out in 2012.  If the world ends before they come out I’m going to be super ticked off.

Orlando Bloom


Okay, this is long, but I love to read so much and really like this list.  I have only read 38 books from this list,  but I plan on reading most all of them (except for maybe the ENTIRE series of Dune)!   I have read the ones in bold (I bolded the Bible, but I must admit I have never read the ENTIRE Bible cover to cover.  But I’m sure that in all my years of Primary,  Sunday School, Gospel Doctrine and Seminary I’ve read just about all of it).  And I noted my favorites with a 🙂

If you’ve read any of these, what are you favorites?

Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen

2 The Lord of the Rings – JRR Tolkien  🙂  🙂  🙂

3 Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte

Harry Potter series – JK Rowling   🙂

To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee   🙂

6 The Bible

7 Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte

Nineteen Eighty Four – George Orwell

9 His Dark Materials – Philip Pullman

10 Great Expectations – Charles Dickens

11 Little Women – Louisa M Alcott 🙂

12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles – Thomas Hardy

13 Catch 22 – Joseph Heller

14 Complete Works of Shakespeare

15 Rebecca – Daphne Du Maurier

16 The Hobbit – JRR Tolkien 🙂

17 Birdsong – Sebastian Faulk

18 Catcher in the Rye – JD Salinger

19 The Time Traveler’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger

20 Middlemarch – George Eliot

21 Gone With The Wind – Margaret Mitchell

22 The Great Gatsby – F Scott Fitzgerald

24 War and Peace – Leo Tolstoy 🙂

25 The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams 🙂

27 Crime and Punishment – Fyodor Dostoyevsky

28 Grapes of Wrath – John Steinbeck

29 Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll

30 The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame

31 Anna Karenina – Leo Tolstoy

32 David Copperfield – Charles Dickens

33 Chronicles of Narnia – CS Lewis

34 Emma -Jane Austen

35 Persuasion – Jane Austen

36 The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe – CS Lewis

37 The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini

38 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – Louis De Bernieres

39 Memoirs of a Geisha – Arthur Golden

40 Winnie the Pooh – A.A. Milne

41 Animal Farm – George Orwell

42 The Da Vinci Code – Dan Brown

43 One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel Garcia Marquez

44 A Prayer for Owen Meaney – John Irving

45 The Woman in White – Wilkie Collins

46 Anne of Green Gables – LM Montgomery

47 Far From The Madding Crowd – Thomas Hardy

48 The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood

49 Lord of the Flies – William Golding 🙂

50 Atonement – Ian McEwan

51 Life of Pi – Yann Martel

52 Dune – Frank Herbert – the whole series!

53 Cold Comfort Farm – Stella Gibbons

54 Sense and Sensibility – Jane Austen

55 A Suitable Boy – Vikram Seth

56 The Shadow of the Wind – Carlos Ruiz Zafon

57 A Tale Of Two Cities – Charles Dickens

58 Brave New World – Aldous Huxley

59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time – Mark Haddon

60 Love In The Time Of Cholera – Gabriel Garcia Marquez

61 Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck

62 Lolita – Vladimir Nabokov

63 The Secret History – Donna Tartt

64 The Lovely Bones – Alice Sebold 🙂

65 Count of Monte Cristo – Alexandre Dumas

66 On The Road – Jack Kerouac

67 Jude the Obscure – Thomas Hardy

68 Bridget Jones’s Diary – Helen Fielding

69 Midnight’s Children – Salman Rushdie

70 Moby Dick – Herman Melville

71 Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens

72 Dracula – Bram Stoke

73 The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett

74 Notes From ASmallIsland- Bill Bryson

75 Ulysses – James Joyce

76 The Inferno – Dante

77 Swallows and Amazons – Arthur Ransome

78 Germinal – Emile Zola

79 Vanity Fair – William Makepeace Thackeray

80 Possession – AS Byatt

81 A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens

82 Cloud Atlas – David Mitchell

83 The Color Purple – Alice Walker

84 The Remains of the Day – Kazuo Ishiguro

85 Madame Bovary – Gustave Flaubert

86 A Fine Balance – Rohinton Mistry

87 Charlotte’s Web – E.B. White

88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven – Mitch Albom

89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

90 The Faraway Tree Collection – Enid Blyton

91 Heart of Darkness – Joseph Conrad

92 The Little Prince – Antoine De Saint-Exupery

93 The Wasp Factory – Iain Banks

94 Watership Down – Richard Adams 🙂

95 A Confederacy of Dunces – John Kennedy Toole 🙂 (This  book is CrAZy!)

96 A Town Like Alice – Nevil Shute

97 The Three Musketeers – Alexandre Dumas

98 Hamlet – William Shakespeare

99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl

100 Les Miserables – Victor Hugo


And Scotty wins!  Woo hoo!!!  If you’ve never heard him you need to!  Check out his performance with Tim McGraw.


I just have to say I want Scotty to win American Idol!  We find out tonight!  When I saw him audition I said, this boy has to win!  And here he is as a finalist.   I love Lauren, but it has to be Scotty!!!


I love to cook.  I made this fabulously creamy mango-ey delicious tart for a dinner party and it was to DIE for.  Yumm!


I just finished reading the latest book in the Mortal Instrument Series, City of Fallen Angels.  It was pretty good!  It’s a teenager book, filled with over-dramatic, sappy teenage love, just right for a 15 to 16-year-old girl to sigh over, but I still liked the story.  Lots of supernatural stuff, vampires, demons, warlocks, etc.  The first three in  this series weren’t quite so sappy, and I liked them better, but this one was still fun to read.

I’m now on to a “Reacher Novel” by Lee Child, Nothing to Lose.   I’ve read one other Reacher novel, The Persuader.  It was good enough to keep reading it.  I don’t always go for this type of novel–it’s pretty much a “guy” novel.  Lots of guns and fighting and crime and  intrigue and stuff.   Don’t get me wrong, I love a good fight, but I like it to be between a big ugly Orc or fiery demon  and the rogue dark elf, Drizzt Do’Urden’Urden, slashing away at them with his scimitars and sicking [sp?] his huge black panther from another dimension on them  !!    Plus  I usually like a little emotion in my stories, but I’ll read anything that will capture my attention enough for me to want to know what happens next, and The Persuader did.   I have three more of these Reacher novels to read.

What are you reading right now?


I recently went to a Time Out For Women weekend.

It was sooooo fun!  I really wanted to see my favorite LDS artist, Hilary Weeks,  perform, but she wasn’t there.  Mercy River was, though, and they are GREAT!  I’ll be picking up a CD next time I’m at a Deseret Book  Store.  I would have purchased one at the event, but by the time I got to it, they were sold out.

If you’ve never been to a Time Out For Women, and you are lucky enough to live near an event, you should really try to go.   Lots of laughter and tears, singing, clapping, relating, relaxing.  The presenters are incredible.  I was lucky enough that John Bytheway was one of the Friday night presenters.  I absolutely LOVE him!

What a great couple of days I had with my sister and sister-in-law!


48 thoughts on “Off-Topic Chit Chat

  1. Love the Reacher novels. You really have to start at the beginning of the series to have a good understanding of Jack Reacher, the protagonist.

  2. I would suggest reading “The Enemy” first, it is the prequel and give you a better understanding of the beginnings of Jack Reacher. Great series!

      • Thanks for the birthday wishes and the nice compliment!

        My nails are not always that long–I had them done for a special occasion. I wish they could be, but I’m a transcriptionist and I wouldn’t be able to type fast enough if they were that long! I’ve already trimmed them down 😦

  3. Hi Zookie,
    I know your a Dr. Laura fan. Some of the best things she says (in my mind) are the 1 liners that explain the reason behind what she’s saying/lecturing/badgering the callers. In fact sometimes when I listen I take notes to discuss later with my wife. There was one on the Jan 5 episode when she said that women learn about life? romance? or intimacy (I forget which one exactly) from other women. Men learn about it from women and not from other men. I’ve been thinking about this for a while and don’t quite understand the ramifications of it. Women she said will discuss things with their girlfriends things that guys will not discuss with their friends.

    Any opinion?


  4. Aww come on, what do you mean no pics to follow? Haha

    Love your site and I have been reading for some time, thanks for creating it!

  5. I loved your comment about the brethren in sacrament meeting,and I’m really feeling you on what you’re learning about men.I’m on this great journey too and it’s enriching my life enormously.In fact, I think it’s saving me from my own self obsessing.

    But can you help me here. Lingerie football playing? I’m a little confused as to how I feel about that.My first problem is injury-there’s a reason why players wear all that stuff,and my second is the objectification of their bodies-seeing too much of that stuff leads me to feel pretty sad about my sorry butt. I’m also wondering about being a consumer of that stuff when I require certain standards of modesty for myself in public, it does feel weird to see women portrayed like that next to an image of the Saviour (not that I feel He doesn’t like sex or anything but I heard he likes us to be modest). How does this work for you?

    And for me it would be ‘Wuthering Heights’ all the way.

    Thanks for this,it’s been really interesting!

    • I thought I’d feel kind of the way you do when I went to the lingerie league game. But those girls were serious about playing football and it wasn’t the least bit sexual. Well, except for the guys checking out their rear ends, of course. But girls don’t need to be wearing skimpy uniforms for THAT to happen. 🙂 And I was worried about them injuring themselves, too. Thankfully none of them got hurt that night. Anyway, it was a fun, different, interesting thing to do. I didn’t think any more about it and I didn’t go out and buy season tickets. 🙂

      • Thanks for that Zookie,I’m always interested in seeing things from another pint of view. Makes life one long learning curve.

          • Hah! Must be a monitor calibration thing. Our comforter and pillows are maroon, but in bright lights they look pretty close to the red I see on your site. I wouldn’t sign off on pink a pink bed. Actually, my wife would hate that, too.

          • Oh, haha! I was just thinking what a great guy you were for allowing a pink bed. But on second thought, that’s not very manly, is it ;-).

            On my screen everything is rose and pink. No red or maroon. Whose monitor is messed up? 🙂

            p.s. I’m supposed to be working right now. Blah to that. sigh

    • Strangely enough, I (a guy) have read Fifty Shades. I’m a voracious reader, and many of the women at work were whispering and giggling about it so much that I had to check it out. My conclusion?–

      Ladies, you have been duped! I think the reason a lot of women read this is that it was supposedly written by a woman. I think that the woman who calls herself E.L. James might have been involved in the writing, BUT the bulk of the book WAS WRITTEN BY A MAN…

      I say this because the major fantasies explored in the book are all MALE fantasies.
      For example:
      – A nubile young virgin who wants to learn about sex and will do almost anything she is asked to do — MALE fantasy.
      – Being in total sexual control of a beautiful young woman — MALE fantasy.
      – A beautiful young woman who is so horny that she can barely control herself — MALE fantasy.
      – A beautiful young woman who has irresistible earth-shaking multiple orgasms very quickly — MALE fantasy.
      – A young woman who, although recently a virgin, is quickly banging like a porn star (I refer you to Christian’s question to Ana as to whether she has any gag reflex at all) — MALE fantasy.

      Sorry ladies, you’ve been had. E.L. James (a nom de plume) may have been involved in writing the book, probably to add feminine touches like Ana’s self-doubts about appearance, etc, and just to provide a feminine perspective, but I believe the bulk of the book was written by a man. And I’ll bet that most of you would not have read it if you had known that…

  6. I haven’t read the book, but it’s pretty clear from the little I know that it plays more to female fantasy. I mean, if you’re really going to delve into a man’s fantasy you don’t keep it to one woman, right?

    Powerful, successful, stunning alpha male who’s secretly broken and turns all his attention to a could-be-anyone good girl? Female fantasy. Skilled lover, dominant in life and in bed, opening up to only her and ultimately making himself vulnerable to her? BIG time female fantasy. There’s a reason this book has the audience it does.

    • Does not matter to me who wrote it – male or female – but from your descriptions this looks like something that I need to investigate further… lol

    • Agreed Rob. But I still say the book was written by a male/female team, because it has both typical male and typical female fantasies, rather than one or the other exclusively. The plot revolves around the female fantasies that you enumerate, but the sex scenes are all big time male fantasies. Just saying’…

  7. How about a gay woman as author? Someone who knows what a woman wants from both sides as it were, and is not afraid to explore those aspects.

  8. Yes – she is gorgeous – and apparently sings, gardens, and makes magic bars!
    Oh – and lets not forget – she even likes sex! Truly – a wonder woman 🙂

    Do share that recipie – my mouth is watering already!!!

  9. Absolutely!!! I am thinking of doing a series marathon before going to see it! However, since I will be in Hawaii (YAY – I am so excited), I will wait a couple of weeks (and hopefully miss the crowds) before seeing it. As much as I can’t wait to see the final movie – I have waited way longer to see Hawaii and do not intend to spend any time there NOT seeing the islands.

    UMM – excuse me – where is the cookie reciepe?

  10. Hi Zookie, just one of your loyal fans hoping you are OK and that you will continue to write your blog. Your material has been very useful in discussions with my wife. She regards you as being a great and trusted source of the issues women face and how to do so gracefully. Best wishes to you!

    • Kelly, sorry I missed this earlier. Thank you so much for your kind words and compliments. 🙂 I will be continuing with my blog, and hope to have more posts in the near future. I enjoy and appreciate your comments here. Thanks!

      • Hey.Z,

        What has happend with the “recient comments”? I can’t see what the last few comments to your blog are anymore.

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