Wednesday, February 25, 2009

A Fair Bit of Success

Last fall it was brought to my attention that the county fair was accepting entries. Debbie and I entered several things. I entered jam, an apron I made for Athelia, some produce from my garden, some pictures I took on my camping trip, and some baked goods. Not that there was a lot of competition, but I was pretty proud of myself. I brought home a dozen ribbons, most of them gold. It's just something fun that I thought I'd share with all of you!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Old Timey Country

I recently found this clip on YouTube. I have memories of my dad singing the first song in the clip, and memories of my mom singing the second one!

I hope you enjoy watching it as much as I did!

Friday, February 13, 2009

I Like Pretty Food

I want to share a few pictures of things that I ate that make me happy. One is a salad that I made with lots of things from my summer garden, one is an example of the pizzas that I was making on my free grill (hooray for freecycle) over the summer with all of my surplus tomatoes and basil, and one is a fat lot of cinnamon rolls I made for a special occasion. I really love food!

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Karen to the Rescue!

I can't believe I haven't blogged about this yet! I mean, I was pretty much a hero. Really saved the day and all. If I did post this just let me know. Even if I have already told this story, it's worth telling again. Since I am a hero and all.

So there I was, walking down the hill from the Benson Building on one mighty fine summer afternoon heading to my car. Walking past a drain gate I hear some peeping. I pull the grate off, hop on down, and lean down into the large hole. Definitely peeping. I call BYU police to ask what I should do and they say that they are the ones that take care of it and will be there shortly. I hunker down to wait for them to show them where the duckies are. At some point I see a friend coming down the hill and I flag him down and ask if he by any chance keeps a flashlight in his truck. Being the boy scout trained guy that he is, he pulls a mag-lite out from under the front seat. I go back, lean down into the hole, and see two little ducks wading in the water.

It was too far down to reach them even if they hadn't run away when I would get close. There was a constant trickle of water so it was too slippery to climb down. I found an old door and blocked off most of where the trickle came in and where the ducks must have slipped down. The drain pipe was pretty broad and was blocked up at the far end. It went back a good few dozen yards and then there was a cement wall.

The mommy and daddy ducks heard their lost babies and would come close to the drain and quack at them. The babies heard and would peep back. It was cute, but made me want to save them all the more. As some other people were walking to their cars they would stop and wait with me. Some stayed and were really trying to help, while others were just interested in the show. A girl called her mother who lived a few blocks away and she brought two pool nets that we used to try and fish the ducklings out of the hole with. A physics student went back to the Eyring and brought back a whole bag of bagel crumbs that were left over from something. Before that we had tried to lure them with a few cake crumbs that some other girl had left over from her lunch.

We fished one out and set it free next to its family and after mom and dad had checked the little guy out, they and the 9 or 10 other babies waddled back down to the duck pond. Much to our surprise, we still heard two little duckies peeping from the tunnel. After much further efforts, mostly on my part and that of the aforementioned mother and daughter of the pool-net fame, we did manage to get the other two out all at once. Since the rest of the flock had already gone back to the duck pond, we carried the little peepers down there in the pool nets. We let them go and they ran back to their family!

Like I said. I'm pretty much a hero. The police never did show up. After several hours, we called them to ask about whether or not they were actually coming. Apparently there was some people-related incidents that necessitated the presence of the BYU cops. After we got the ducks out I saw a momma deer and her two fawns come out and start to eat the bushes. It was cute too! And that's my story. You know, the one where I'm a hero... Yeah... cool... hmmm...

Big gulps eh... welp... see you later...

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

25 Random Things About Me

This thing has been going around Facebook and I finally decided to give in to the many requests I was sent to post random things about myself. I worked on it on and off for a bit and decided to post it on my blog as well. Well... here goes:

1) I have broken a leg, but it wasn't mine.

2) At one point I had pierced ears, but I decided the hassle of the whole process was too much to bear just so I could have shiny/sparkly things in my earlobes so I let them close up.

3) I can read really fast as long as it is recreational reading and not a textbook. I haven't really timed it, but I think I average 2-3 pages per minute depending on font size and intended audience of the book. For example, I recently knocked out a 250 page Tamora Pierce novel in 2 hours.

4) Speaking of which, I love love love to read and do it a lot. My first love is SciFi/Fantasy, but I've been branching out a bit recently. I've really cut back in an effort to write my dissertation in time and I feel like I'm going through withdrawls.

5) I can't stand it when the 4 fingernails on either hand (but not necessarily the thumb) are different lengths. And my nails are super brittle and break all the time. When one breaks, the other three get trimmed back too.

6) I make funny faces when I'm really concentrating on something. Like when I'm playing percussion. My high school drumline buddies used to tease me about it all the time.

7) I really like dark chocolate. Sometimes milk. But rarely fruity or minty chocolate. Give it to me straight up!

8) I originally declared Biochemistry as my major because it sounded cool, not because I knew anything about it.

9) I have a terrible long-term memory for detail. I can and do read the same books year to year and still really enjoy them. The same with movies.

10) I prefer my water at room temperature. I like soda and other drinks cold.

11) I don't have very good depth perception. This is one of the reasons I avoid sports where I have to catch things as much as possible. It also meant that I rear-ended several cars when I first got my driver's license. It's improved somewhat since I got lasik, but i'm pretty sure it's still not as good as most people's.

12) I get really punchy late at night. The filter between my brain and my mouth can ceases to exist. Some of you have witnessed this and may or may not have been scarred by the experience.

13) I recently compiled a 620 page book on the lives of my dad's dad's parents. It's pretty cool.

14) A few weeks from now I will be Karen Merrell PhD!

15) I have a 3 month attention span for my various hobbies. Everything gets done eventually, but if it takes more time than 3 months it may have to wait years to get finished.

16) I also go through breakfast phases where I eat the same thing every single morning for a month or so after which I don't eat it for a long, long time. I just finished my porridge kick and have moved on to english muffins.

17) If I'm sitting still listening to someone for more than 30 minutes or so I tend to fall asleep. This happens regardless of how interested I may or may not be in what the person has to say. This also has nothing to do with how much sleep I got the night before. This also happens when I go to symphonies, but not plays, or movies. Almost always happens at church.

18) I briefly considered going to cooking school after graduate school. I decided that probably wouldn't be a good idea and found a professionally trained chef to volunteer with instead.

19) I play the only non-brass instrument in a brass band. I love percussion! Hitting things with sticks really starts my Saturdays off right!

20) My communication style can best be described as blunt. I tend to call things as I see them. It's hard for me to fathom, but this makes many people uncomfortable.

21) My first pet was a dog named poochie.

22) It's really hard to offend or embarrass me. I think my mom used up a lifetime of embarrassment while I was growing up. This is how I can wear things like penguin and superhero costumes in public with impunity.

23) I was in 4-H from the time I was 8 years old until I graduated high school. I made it to state in target shooting (.22s) a few times, and won both grand champion and reserve-grand champion market show lamb at the 1997 El Paso County Livestock Fair.

24) I don't like things to be dirty, but I do like a little bit of clutter out and about. I'm uncomfortable in houses where things are antiseptically clean and nothing is out. Makes me feel like I can't relax.

25) I like having my legs even with my body. So if I'm sitting in a chair, I usually have my legs tucked under my body or propped up on something. When I'm at home I often sit cross-legged at the kitchen table, and I sit on the floor rather than on the couch when watching TV. Weird, but that's just how I roll.