Saturday, May 29, 2010


Here's what usually happens at our house when we make something delicious in a pan, like brownies or cake or chicken or casserole:  We make the delicious food.  We eat it.  The pan has cooked-on goodness all over that I know will be difficult and time-consuming to clean off.  Afraid of spending the time and effort, I don't clean it.  The pan sits on the counter for a while, goodness getting harder and harder.  A while later, perhaps a week or so (during which time I've wanted to make several hundred dishes that would use that dish, only to remember that it's dirty), I decide to tackle the beast.  After one look, I decide to let it soak for a while.  Occasionally, I forget about it soaking in the sink, and perhaps it soaks for a couple of days.  This doesn't usually happen, but definitely happens sometimes.  Later, I get brave and again decide to tackle the beast.  After a while of scrubbing and scraping and soap and baking soda and water and more soap and scrubbing... the pan is clean.  A couple of days later, I make something else delicious.  A vicious cycle.

Keep in mind, that's the process when the house doesn't have a dishwasher in it.  If it does, it's an entirely different cycle, more along the "put inside dishwasher, add soap, wash, rinse, and put away" cycle.

But!  This week, I remembered a common kitchen supply that I had forgotten, except for when I can't find the lid to my tupperware container.


That's right.  Tinfoil.  I made granola bars this week, carefully lining the pan with tinfoil as directed. (Actually, the recipe called for parchment paper, but seeing as I didn't have any, I used tinfoil instead.  And the granola bars turned out quite delicious, I might add.)  And yesterday, when I finished the granola bars and took out the tinfoil to throw it away, I saw a beautiful sight.


That's right.  A clean pan.  With a quick wipe of a paper towel, that pan was ready to be put away.  No sitting around; no developing crusts; no not being able to make other foods; no guilt when I remember the pan and don't feel like cleaning it; no soaking; no scraping, scrubbing, soap, or baking soda.  And a clean pan.  Tonight, when I made chicken in that very same pan, I carefully lined it with tinfoil, baked the chicken and let it get deliciously juicy and crusty all over that pan.  Then I took out the tinfoil and threw it away, quickly rinsed out the inside of the pan with a little soap (because there was a tiny bit of leakage of seasoning, and I wanted to make sure nothing else was in there), and then it was clean.  MAX CLEANUP TIME: One minute.  That's right, ladies and gents.  That means, for the rest of the time while living in this apartment, I will probably go through a decent amount of tinfoil.  It might mean a little extra cost, but that's a sacrifice I am more than willing to make for a cleaner kitchen and conscience.  Plus, when you get your tinfoil at Big Lots like we do, it only costs like, $1.  Which is not a huge sacrifice.  

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

entertainment book

Have you seen one of THESE before?

They are full of awesome coupons and deals on everything from restaurants to car rentals.  I want to buy one, I think.  Joel said we might go spend money just to use the coupons, but the way I see it is, we go out to eat and on dates anyway, so why not go to ones in this book and save some money?  I don't think it would take very long to make up for buying it.  They're usually kind of expensive but are on a special deal right now - 2 for $20 AND free shipping.  The thing is... I don't need two of them.  I'll probably buy one for $15, but if anyone (especially those of you in my area) would like to split the deal with me so we can both have one for $10 each, please let me know!  

alisonism #3: Got milk?


This weekend, Joel and I drank a whole gallon in only one day.  That was the fastest we've ever gone through a gallon - usually we drink about a gallon each per week.  But it was SO DELICIOUS!  And when I put in orders at work for milk, I always get thirsty and wish I could drink it.  Yum!

Monday, May 24, 2010


Dear Weather,

I'll be the first to admit that I love snow. I love to play in it, see it, eat it, walk in it (especially when I have an umbrella and boots, but even when I don't), ride my bike in it, etc.  However, I do think that it was an odd choice of weather to send us today, seeing as it's May 24.  


Saturday, May 22, 2010

alisonism #2: "Pause as necessary."

When people are reading poetry out loud, I don't like it when they read like this:

"And there sat Sam.
looking cool and calm.
in the heart of the furnace roar.
And he wore a smile.
you could see a mile.
and he said.
"Please close that door.
It's fine in here.
but I greatly fear.
you'll let in the cold and storm.
Since I left Plumtree.
down in Tennessee.
it's the first time I've been warm."

Because poems should be read like this:

"And there sat Sam, looking cool and calm, in the heart of the furnace roar, and he wore a smile you could see a mile, and he said, "Please close that door.  It's fine in here, but I greatly fear you'll let in the cold and storm. Since I left Plumtree, down in Tennessee, it's the first time I've been warm."

And in celebration of good poems, I leave you with this one, the one I just quoted, that I know because of my grandpa and his brother. :)  (It's long but worth it, people.  If you haven't read it, you should.)

The Cremation of Sam McGee
by Robert Service

There are strange things done in the midnight sun
By the men who moil for gold;
The Arctic trails have their secret tales
That would make your blood run cold;
The Northern Lights have seen queer sights,
But the queerest they ever did see
Was that night on the marge of Lake Lebarge
I cremated Sam McGee.

Now Sam McGee was from Tennessee,
where the cotton blooms and blows.
Why he left his home in the South to roam
'round the Pole, God only knows.
He was always cold but the land of gold
seemed to hold him like a spell;
Though he'd often say in his homely way
that he'd sooner live in hell.

On a Christmas Day we were mushing our way
over the Dawson trail.
Talk of your cold! Through the parka's fold,
it stabbed like a driven nail.
If our eyes we'd close, then the lashes froze
till sometimes we couldn't see.
It wasn't much fun, but the only one
to whimper was Sam McGee.

And that very night, as we lay packed tight
in our robes beneath the snow,
And the dogs were fed, and the stars o'erhead
were dancing heel and toe,
He turned to me and "Cap," says he,
"I'll cash in this trip, I guess;
And if I do, I'm asking that you 
won't refuse my last request."

Well, he seemed so low that I couldn't say no; 
then he says with a sort of moan,
"It's the cursed cold, and it's got right hold
till I'm chilled clean through to thte bone.
Yet taint being dead - it's my awful dread
of the ice grave that pains;
So I want you to swear that, foul or fair,
you'll cremate my last remains.

A pal's last need is a thing to heed,
so I swore I would not fail;
And we started on at the streak of dawn
but Oh! he looked ghastly pale.
He crouched on the sleigh, and he raved all day
of his home in Tennessee;
And before nightfall a corpse was all
that was left of Sam McGee.

There wasn't a breath in that land of death,
and I hurried, horror-driven,
with a corpse half-hid that I couldn't get rid
because of a promise given.
It was lashed to the sleigh, and it seemed to say,
"You may tax your brawn and brains,
But you promised true, and it's up to you
to cremate these last remains."

Now a promise made is a debt unpaid,
and the trail has its own stern code.
In the days to come, though my lips were dumb,
in my heart, how I cursed that load!
In the long, long night, by the lone firelight,
while the huskies, round in a ring,
howled out their woes to the homeless snows - 
Oh, how I loathed the thing!

And every day that quiet clay
seemed to heavy and heavier grow;
And on I went, though the dogs were spent
and the grub was getting low.
The trail was bad, and I felt half mad,
but I swore I would not give in; 
And I'd often sing to the hateful thing,
and it hearkened with a grin.

Till I came to the marge of Lake Lebarge,
and a derelict there lay;
It was jammed in the ice, but I saw in a trice
it was called the Alice May.
And I looked at it, and I thought a bit,
and I looked at my frozen chum.
Then, "Here," said I, with a sudden cry, "is my crematorium!"

Some planks I tore from the cabin floor
and I lit the boiler fire;
Some coal I found that was lying around,
and I heaped the fuel higher;
The flames just soared, and the furnace roared
such a blaze you seldom see.
And I burrowed a hole in the glowing coal
and I stuffed in Sam McGee.

Then I made a hike, for I didn't like
to hear him sizzle so.
And the heavens scowled, and the huskies howled,
and the wind began to blow.
It was icy cold, but the hot sweat rolled
down my cheeks, and I don't know why;
And the greasy smoke in an inky cloak
went streaking down the sky.

I do not now how long in the snow
I wrestled with grisly fear,
but the stars came out and they danced about 
ere again I ventured near.
I was sick with dead, but I bravely said,
"I'll just take a peep inside.
I guess he's cooked, and it's time I looked."
Then the door I opened wide.

And there sat Sam, looking cool and calm,
in the heart of the furnace roar;
And he wore a smile you could see a mile,
and he said, "Please close that door.
It's fine in here, but I greatly fear
you'll let in the cold and storm - 
Since I left Plumtree, down in Tennessee,
it's the first time I've been warm."

There are strange things done in the midnight sun
by the men who moil for gold.
The Arctic trails have their secret tales
that would make your blood run cold.
The Northern Lights have seen queer sights,
but the queerest they ever did see
was that night on the marge of Lake Lebarge
I cremated Sam McGee.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010—Be Heard. Be Happy.

So, I heard about a new website today. It's called, and it's another word-of-mouth kind of website, where you get to try new products and stuff. It seems pretty neat, but we'll see. I've only been a member for, ohh.... 5 minutes, so it's still on a trial period. There's the website, though, if you want to see what it's about! (P.S. I get points for people who click the link, but don't feel pressured - just click if you actually want to. :)—Be Heard. Be Happy.

Monday, May 17, 2010

alisonism #1: "And if you get peanut butter, get smooth!"

I don't like it when people call it "chunky" or "extra chunky" peanut butter.  Western Family does that. They should call it "crunchy" or "extra crunchy."

Sunday, May 16, 2010


I guess this post is kind of for my grandma.  It was at least inspired by her.  She introduced me to indexing.  She does it a lot, and is even serving a mission for the LDS Church right now, helping indexers.  I am indexing right now (or was a minute ago, until I got stuck on a word for a long time).  For those of you who don't know, indexing is something that you do through where you look at a scan of an old document on your computer, like an old census record or something (they're always different - sometimes birth records, marriage records, etc) and type in the information that you see written.  Why do I do this?  Because it helps people's records be saved and the people be remembered.  It gives people who do family history work real-life documents proving their ancestors' existence.  It helps people do their family history.  I think it does something like validate that people were real, and it's somehow connected to doing temple work, which is also very important.  (For those of you who aren't familiar with that phrase, in our church, we believe that people who died without a knowledge of the gospel of Jesus Christ deserve a chance to accept the gospel and be baptized, etc., and so we are baptized vicariously for them in our temples. That's a big reason why so many members of the church do family history work - to find names of people that still need that chance.  Let me know if that didn't make sense:)

Anyway, now that we've established that.
I really enjoy indexing.  Right now I'm working on a census record and I'm supposed to type in the name of the person, their gender, marital status, age, country of origin, and country of parents' origin.  It's interesting how connected you can feel to someone when you're only reading their name.  When I'm indexing, I think about the people I'm recording - how the 71-year-old woman head-of-household might feel, being a widow; how long she might've been a widow; how sad it must be to only have 4 of your 11 children alive; how happy it must be to have all 4 of your 4 children alive; how the Irish woman and the German man met and married - maybe a language barrier wasn't an issue?; whether the 48-year-old man and the 38-year-old woman married for love or family arrangement; why the husband immigrated a year before the wife, and how things were for her after he emigrated and before she did; how it was that almost every child was born in a different state, but the oldest and youngest were born in the same state; etc.

Sometimes I think about other things, too - In one household, there was a 19-year-old daughter and a 40-year-old boarder.  I wonder if the girl ever felt uncomfortable or "hit on" by the boarder.  In another house, there was a widower who lived with his young boys, and two female boarders.  I wonder if the girls lived there to help the man take care of his children.  In another house, I wonder why there's a set of three cousins living together, all of whom are over 40 years old and single.  And in another, I wonder how it is that almost all of the children are over 30 and single - are they living at home to help their parents, or what is their story?  Sometimes when the handwriting gets bad on the document, I wonder if the recorder just got sick of writing "Pennsylvania" over and over, or maybe if it's the end of the day and (s)he's tired.  And on the particular one I'm doing, I wonder how the word "Pennsylvania" is written in a totally different handwriting than every other word on the document; it looks almost like it was stamped.

These are the kinds of things I think about when I index.  It's fun, kind of addicting, and very interesting to do.  Fun because you feel good about what you're doing - you feel helpful - and sometimes it's like a game trying to figure out what's written.  Addicting just because. I don't know why.  Maybe for the same reasons it's fun.  And it's interesting to think about who you're recording and what their story is, and also to feel like you're almost getting to know people while recording the names from a certain town or something.  Anyway, it's pretty fun.  You should try it sometime.

Friday, May 14, 2010

what's love got to do, got to do with it?

What's love but a second-hand emotion?

That song always reminds me of Elizabeth Kulogowski, who everyone calls Kuli but who I have always called Elizabeth, for some reason... but it reminds me of her because one time, in tenth grade, at the end of chemistry one day, she came up to me and said, "What's love got to do with it?" and this girl who was kind of quiet said, "It's a second-hand emotion."  It was awesome.

Speaking of Elizabeth, that totally reminds me of the time that my ride left me at seminary instead of taking me to school.  but I'm out of time, so I'll have to write about that another day.

but what does love have to do with it?!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

making the bed

Okay, first of all, let's get this straight - I like to have my bed made.

And with that said, let me share with you the most logical argument I've ever heard for not making the bed:

"My wife always asks me why I don't make the bed. For the same reason I don't tie my shoes after I take them off!"

In my opinion, that totally beats out the "because I'm just going to be getting back in!" logic that I've found to be the most common among non-bedmakers. Thanks, Jim Gaffigan. Although I still prefer to have my bed made, not making it seems way more logical now than it did before.

"If I were here by myself, I'd just lay here and eat bacon...."

I read an article today that called bacon America's "food crush," which I thought was a really awesome name for it, but also pretty accurate.  I definitely know love bacon.  And just think of everything with bacon in it, besides our hands and mouths - hamburgers, cheeseburgers, KFC's new "burger," at least half the food made on Food Network, chicken sandwiches, salads, green beans, BLT's, baked potatoes, sometimes it's wrapped around things like pork chops, etc.  If you have doubts about America's new crush, just look at Bacon Salt or Bacon Today......
........or in my freezer.

Oh, and here's that article in case you're interested.  Have a bacon-licious day!  And please, enjoy this video.  

Wednesday, May 5, 2010


This post is specifically for one of my most amazing friends, Erika.  We have approximately 1,000,000x more inside jokes than I have with just about anyone else.  Every time I see her, I usually end up peeing my pants and/or crying because I'm laughing so much.  She asked the other day if I still had the Monster Truck Rally shirt she gave me for my 14th birthday.  I definitely still have it.  (Sidenote: She also gave me two of my top 5 favorite pairs of socks that birthday.)  Since she reminded me of it, I decided to wear it yesterday.  And then I met George Foreman!  And we took this picture together.  I like to call it "Self Portrait."  This is totally for you, Erika.

Also, Jamisa Bedellagraham, geometry teacher racing Horatio, said teacher looking like a duck and also wearing duck-like shoes, Jack Handey, fruit that screams when you eat it, crows calling Kaw's name, writing haikus in Mrs. Crofford's class, Peeping Tom, George, Magritte, typing things with fingers one letter off, being in Mrs. Howland's class and doing the peanut butter and jelly dance to that song on those Oklahoma movies, having the same dream the same night where we were pregnant with twins and didn't know who the dad was, being Laodicea, What kind of garden grows the most vegetables? A flash garden!, fubar (the facebook Christmas present you gave me that one time - you should check out our wall-to-wall from that time. It's awesome), my favorite pencil that I've had since 6th grade (that I still have!) except missing a little part that I lost in the library in 8th grade, being Lasheha Brown from our geometry book, you being Igor Ilagorishvili (sp?), me being Jewison because I look like a Jew, owning a Jewraser and Stefan being a Jewasaur, me being Albert, me being She Eddingto.  Etc.