Welcome Back Blue Sky

You Gotta Love It, Baby.

For Christmas, I gave Jeff Jazz tickets... And, tonight they were redeemed.

Brecke also surprised Matt, and my mom surprised my dad, who was out of town, so my brother Chanse gladly subbed.

Who knew Jazz games could be so fun? The Jazz played San Antonio, and the game literally came down to the last 2 minutes. I was jumping up and down, screaming D-Fense (at the appropriate times), and yelling at Bear to throw me a ball. (I didn't succeed.)

I even thought of a clever joke: "So, are the Jazz dancers still sponsored by NuSkin?" (Response: I'm not sure?) "Well, if they have a third eyeball, we'll know they are now sponsored by EnergySolutions." Ha! Admit it; that's funny.

Back to the game: I predicted Millsap to be the Sub of the Game, and sure enough he was. Although, Okur did have 31 points... Jazz win it 97 to 94... And, we definitely loved it, baby.

Go Jazz!


Where Do You Find Inspiration?

Lately, I've been really inspired by my husband's art-work. Actually, I'm always awe-inspired with his ability, but it seems that lately, there's been an extra burst of inspiration in his creations.

It got me thinking... where do you find inspiration?

When I used to work downtown, one afternoon I was waiting at a stop light. I looked out my window, and saw a yellow, smiley-faced balloon floating in the sky. I took a mental snapshot of that image because, for whatever reason, it inspired me.

That was the initial purpose of this blog. I wanted to share
music and/or
images that were inspiring.

With that said, I'll be posting more pictures, probably random pictures, that left me feeling inspired and happy:blissful.

The above image is Jeffrey finishing his largest piece to date. He previously created this same image on a much smaller scale, and thought he would create a much larger version of it.

Luckily, I find much inspiration in Jeff's studio. With his pieces covering our walls, I'm literally surrounded... So, whether it's Jeff's pieces, a balloon, or another image, I'll snapshot it, and share it... and, who knows? maybe a happy:blissful inspiration will follow.

I want...

Did anyone get West Elm's recent catalog...? Although pretty much the same as their previous catalog, it got be itching for some new decor. (Man, after my V-day decor post, I must need a change of atmosphere!)

I think this Runner is the perfect rug to greet guests in our entry-way:

Also, I've really wanted to get organized, and these containers would be just the motivation I need:

I also really enjoyed this bedspread:

West Elm's color schemes perfectly match the colors in our house... So, that must be why I want so many West Elm goodies!


Dancing Queen...

My sweet niece, Kymbal Jane, celebrated her 4th birthday today. To celebrate, she had a skating party at Orem's Classic Skating.

The kids these days (including my nieces and nephew) love to scoot rather than skate. (They have scooters to rent rather than roller skates.)

But, as for me, I gladly slipped on the old-school, leather, orange-wheeled, stinky skates; they sure roll smooth.

Although I couldn't shoot-the-duck (nice, Breckie), or fancy up any turns, I still felt like I got my skate right on!

Since Jeffrey couldn't make the party, I had to sit out on the Snowball skate... But, I was able to save my best moves for Abba's 'Dancing Queen.'

We had such a fun night skating it up.

Happy birthday, Janer!


xoxo Decorations

I absolutely love Valentine's Day. I always have. Even when I didn't have a significant other to share it with... I'd share it with dreamy fictional characters on the big screen and a box of Jr. Mints. :)

With so many great stores accessible online and close by, I've decided to invest in some Valentine decorations... Here are some cute finds so far:

(Found on www.crateandbarrel.com)

(Found on www.target.com)

(Found at www.chiasso.com)

Also, my creative sister created a centerpiece with a large wine glass, filled with conversation hearts, and tied a bow around it... It turned out very cute. (Right, Polly?)

If any of you have any other suggestions, please don't by shy- let me know!

Chew on This...

Many of you are aware of my fascination for gum... I even blogged, in-depth, about some of my favorites.

Orbit hasn't stopped there. At Target on Saturday, I picked up 2 new flavors: Raspberry Mint and Mint Mojito.

Raspberry Mint tastes a lot like the Koolerz brand. It's a good pick, if you're in need of something sweet.

Mint Mojito boosts an 'Exotic New Flavor' on the packaging, and it smells quite limey. The flavor is a collection of cilantro-like, mint, and lime tastes... It's not my favorite, but it's not bad. It tastes a lot like Orbit's Lemon-Lime.

With my new job, I'm trying hard to steer away from too many snacks. Hopefully these new treats will keep my sweet-tooth preoccupied! (With my habit, I should probably buy stock in gum... Is that an option?)


I'd Like to Thank...

NPR has a "Write Your Own Oscar Speech" Contest. The catch? The speech needs to be written for your favorite actor or actress currently nominated in character.

Unfortunately, I haven't seen too many of the films that have been nominated...

But, it would be fun to pretend to be Meryl Streep's character in "The Devil Wears Prada." The speech would go something like this:

"I have no one to thank but myself... You all wish you could be me. Don't you?"

What character would you slip into?

More info

I Swear, I'm Not Obsessed...

I would just love to accidentally run into Ms. Keri Russell up in Park City. She's currently there promoting her new movie “The Waitress,"which I'm dying to see. (That's her in the film.)

Not only do I think she's adorable, a great actress, she also seems to be super sweet in real life. (Just like her "Felicity" character.) "Waitress" was directed by another actress Adrienne Shelly who was killed after the movie was made... At the premiere of the movie, (as I read) Keri R. got super choked up when talking about the movie and the director... I don't know... of course you would get choked up, but I think Ms. Russell is an upright gal.

Not only does she seem sweet, but in real-life, you know just like our everyday life, she's pregnant...! (I have no idea why I'm so thrilled.)

Jeff asked if I wish she were my best friend... duh! of course.


a girl can ALWAYS wish...

The buzz surrounding the Coachella festival is the Rage reunion... but, look! the Jesus and Mary Chain? That's a much better reunion in astronomical proportions...

If I were heading to the California dessert for this (fingers crossed), I'd be busy... So many fun artists to see:


the Jesus and Mary Chain, DJ Shadow (for Jeff), Rufus W., Nickel Creek, Gillian Welch, Tilly and the Wall.


the Decemberists (of course), LCD Soundsystem, Blonde Redhead (can she really sound so angelic live?), the New Pornograhers, Regina Spektor, Sparklehorse, CocoRosie.


Air, Damien Rice (I adore his back-up singer.), Lily Allen, Amos Lee... Tickets are on sale Saturday.

Anyone want to rent an RV in April with me?


The Search Is Over!

After a long 2 months, my job search has concluded.

Today, I happily accepted an eCommerce Marketing Manager position with Franklin Covey, and I am thrilled.

Over the past 2 months, I have been on a tedious search to find the best job for me. I have scoured job advertisements, (www.craigslist.org and Yahoo's Hot Jobs are my favorite) emailed cover letters/resumes, (I have over 20 different types Cover Letters/Resumes depending on the position.), taken grammar and personality tests (On average, a personality test can take at least 90 minutes.). And last, but certainly not least, sit with strangers to try and convince them that I would be the right employee for them. (I have 3 interview-ready outfits. One of which (J-Crew gray, wool turtle neck with dark gray, wool pants, black boots, and my good-luck charm: my great-grandma's locket necklace.) always brought me luck.

Over the course of the past 2 months, I've had job offers, which I declined. Something about the possible job didn't feel right in my gut. But, once I declined, I'd have to stumble past an array of questions that popped in my head: "Now, why did I not take the job?","What if I don't receive another job offer?" or, "I suppose the commute wouldn't be that bad."

There was also a hand-full of interviews, which I walked out of feeling confident and optimistic (which is a rarity for me) that the interviewees really liked me. Really. But, then I'd receive an email, letter, or phone call 2 weeks later indicating they found another candidate that better fit the position. And, the entire process would start all over again.

On the other hand, I was able to spend my days however I liked. I didn't have to be anywhere at a specific time, didn't have to answer to a manager... My days were wide open for lunch dates with my mom and sisters. I had plenty of time to practice the piano. And, I finally was able to organize the kitchen cupboards, as I liked. But, it took me awhile to adjust to my newfound freedoms. And, there's only so many cupboards left to clean...

So, I am very excited that this long-winded, seem-to-never-end journey is over. Finally.

I will confess; I've definitely been humbled. I realized it's okay to ask for help: fasting and praying are a necessity. And, I, again, realized how patient my sweet husband is. Whenever I'd see a job advertisement at Village Inn or McDonalds I'd jokingly say, "Maybe they'll hire me." But, Jeffrey never thought it was very funny... I suppose he knew there was something much better out there for me.

And, I must give a special shout-out to my friend Brad; he's the one that networked my resume at Franklin Covey... without him, I don't know if I would've gotten an interview. Thanks so much Brad!

Yay for jobs! Yay for sweet husbands! Yay for supporting parents and siblings! Yay for friends! And, Yay! my search is over. Finally.


Top Design

I can safely say the reality show, "Project Runway" is one of my favortie shows... Since it's currently on hiatus, I need something to fill that void...
Luckily, the creative folks over at Bravo are introducing yet another reality show about design- interior design that is.

This new show features 12 aspiring interior designers who compete to create a Top Design in each episode. So, like "Project Runway" I'm sure there will be some interesting challenges, diverse designers, and extremely entertaining episodes.

I've got my hopes up for this one... But, I have a feeling it'll be good... real good.

Show debuts Wednesday, January 31st. Hosted by Todd Oldham.


My Life as a 19 Year Old...

At dance last night, Camie and I were talking about how we still felt so youthful, young at heart, 19... 19? That was almost 8 years ago!

So, I thought back to my 19-20 year old self and realized that I can still do what I did then-- now. I went on many road-trips with fun friends- (The Moab trip featured on the left is still one of my favorites.) And, I was discovering hot indie acts at live shows.

This hobby went on for some time… I even went to shows by my lonesome self at Kilby Court (where I met Ben Gibbard, I might add), and Salt Air. (Adam Duritz was singing directly to me; I just know it.)

After seeing Bonnie “Prince” Billy a few months ago, I realized how much I enjoy live music. I also realized, how youthful I felt being there... Plus, there’s still many good bands to discover and experience again, so if you want to feel like a 19 year old again, hop in a car full of friends, drive to Moab, OR see these shows:

**The Shins at In the Venue February 16th.

**Joshua Radin for any of you hopeless romantics at The Urban Lounge February 8th.

**Ben Kweller and, have any of you heard his new song? Mighty catchy... See him at In the Venue February 13th. (Oh ya, we saw him up at Red Fest; I really liked it.)

**Badly Drawn Boy Okay- in years past, this was one of my favorite shows... at the Urban Lounge March 19th.

**Aqueduct at the Urban Lounge April 25th.

And, there you go... I just don't want to have that awful haircut I did at 19... But, I would like to be my 19 year old self, just one more time.



I received an email from Pepperlime, which convinced me to visit their site: Lots of shoes for under $100.00! This intrigued me because a) Nowadays, I really only buy shoes at Target, Old Navy, or Payless. b) I LOVE shoes.
So, take a glance, and long for summer (most of them are sandals). Hopefully something will inspire your feet.


Music to My Ears...

I've linked to Pandora in my happy! links, but for those of you who haven't taken advantage of this fine service, it's a radio station that you can personalize. For example, do you love Regina Spektor? If so, enter her name into the radio station, and they'll play her songs and other bands that are reminiscent of Regina's.

The founder, some guy named Tim, will be in Salt Lake City Thursday evening at 7:30 at the Salt Lake Library. He'll be discussing his vision of Pandora, and welcomes any feedback on how to better the service... So, if you'd like to go and offer sweet suggestions, you should.

Also, there's supposed to be free paraphernalia, including: t-shirts, stickers, buttons, and other junk.

Anyhow, wish I could go!


100 Random Things About.... ME!

Yes, I'm giving this a shot. Although a popular topic in the blogosphere, I learned a lot about myself, and recommend you try it too.
1. I love to see my husband dance. 2. My twin sister is 30 minutes older than me.
3. I want my 15 minutes of fame. 4. I regret that I wasn't in the high school Jazz Band.
5. I can eat a King Size box of Jr. Mints in 1 sitting.
6. I still crave my Mom's cooking. 7. I'm a sucker for a good, clean Romance novel.
8. I bought the movie "13 Going on 30" the day it came out on DVD.
9. I always glance at the clock when it's 9:11. 10. I love shows like "The Amazing Race" and Real World/ Road Rule challenges, because I could do the challenges and win!
11. I wasn't a good cheerleader in high school. 12. I love to kiss my husband.
13. I'm always scared of getting in trouble. 14. I lived in London when I was 20.
15. I've always, always wanted to be in a band- still do. 16. I am not a good cook.
17. My husband's an amazing painter and cook. 18. TV shows like "Gilmore Girls" and "Grey's Anatomy" (even "Oprah") can get me to cry. 19. I love to make people laugh.
20. I love to hear my little sister sing. 21. I wish I were a Runner.
22. I like to push myself. 23. I've written poetry since the fourth grade.
24. I love instrumental music. 25. I hate kitties.
26. I always forget how to spell tomorrow. 27. I'm very competitive. (Especially with Jeffrey.) 28. I, still, miss "Felicity." 29. I love to be with my entire family on Sunday.
30. I love to take naps with Jeff. 31. I don't think I'll ever eat meat again.
32. I collect magnets. 33. I secretly drink Dr. Pepper.
34. Jeff and I own 4 iPods. 35. I like my wrists.
36. I miss my Junior High best friends. 37. I wish my hair grew faster.
38. I think Camie is hilarious. 39. I wish I still took piano lessons from my
old piano teacher. 40. I love the smell of my parent's coat closet.
41. I want to have a baby soon, so they'll know my grandparents.
42. I sleep with a blanket my mom made me. 43. I love hearing Jeffrey sing Belle & Sebastian songs. 44. I'm taller than most of my close friends.
45. I wish I had my sister, Kyra's, profile. 46. I have the cutest, sweetest,
smartest nieces and nephews. 47. I absolutely cannot cook.
48. I love wearing glasses. 49. I love writing reminders on Post-its.
50. I love bookstores. 51. I love cute Thank U cards.
52. I wish I designed jewelry. 53. My dream job? Producing/Creating soundtracks.
54. I love that my parents still want to take care of me. 55. Together, Jeff and I
have bought over 360 iTunes songs. 56. I'm currently reading a 1100 paged book.
57. I'm so happy I went to Hillcrest High School. 58. I'm my Ward's primary pianist and choir pianist. 59. My cousin Annelise is living in S. Korea, and I wish I were too.
60. In my life, I've struggled to be me. 61. I think I'm dyslexic.
62. I wish I knew my neighbors. 63. I get cold-sores.
64. My sisters are my bestest friends. 65. I love to clean.
66. Favorite vacation spot so far? Lake Havasupai and Switzerland.
67. I miss my brothers teasing me. 68. My husband spoils me.
69. I hate the number 69. 70. I like to people-watch, especially at airports.
71. My dad has a beautiful singing voice. 72. I want to run a marathon someday.
73. I've torn my ACL. 74. I like to go to Costco.
75. I love to buy music: sheet music, CDs, iTune songs. 76. My wedding ring was my grandma's ring. 77. I love a warm, bubbly bath.
78. I wish I could sew, knit, and quilt like my mom. 79. I hate being cold.
80. I wear patterned socks, a lot. 81. I wish I traveled more.
82. I do not miss my old job as much as I thought I would.
83. I love my car. 84. I have secrets.
85. I don't like my feet. 86. I love to escape into a good book.
87. I like MTV's show "The Hills." (Premieres tonight.) 88. I hate Victoria's Secret.
89. I had Mono in 9th grade- I was very sick. 90. I wish I were a good Tennis Player.
91. I love accessories, especially rings. 92. I'm always wearing slippers.
93. I love Roller Coasters. 94. I found myself in London.
95. I enjoy a weekend trip to St. George. 96. I'm adventurous.
97. I with I were a better baker. 98. I love, love my piano. 99. I love watching Jeffrey sleep.
100. I’m so glad I’ve reached 100.


My "Last Kiss..."

Oh boy, I knew it! I knew The Last Kiss would be a terrible, depressing movie. And yet? I watched.

Sure, there's always the soundtrack to look forward to- but, even then- disappointing! (C'mon- a Coldplay song for the musical montage during a down-pour for the scene of regret?)

I don't know what I was thinking... Jeff went off to have game night, so I'd stay home with a movie he would never watch. I am a sucker for a good chick flick... But, this one, t.e.r.r.i.b.l.e!

The storyline was pointless-- Men feeling like they have made the wrong choices, and then trying to live with the consequences. Or, for Zach Braff's character- being terrified that he will never again experience another surprise for the rest of his life... Never experience another first kiss... Oh brother! Get over it! And the women in this movie- they were portrayed as high-maintenanced, emotional baggage that men have to try and get accustomed to. Puke. That's right- puke.

And the acting: wow, the leading lady kept slipping in and out of an English/British accent. And, I just don't see Zach Braff as a dramatic actor. He'll always be Newbie to me. (His 'Scrubs' character.)

I should've stuck with my gut on this one: Don't watch it. You will have wasted 99 minutes that could've spent in a much happier place. Not to mention, it is rated R, and I am once again reminded why I should not watch these types of movies.

So, again, don't let this movie be your Last Kiss, it'll simply leave a bad taste in your mouth. Seriously.

A Dreamy Dessert.

Yum. At my Recipe Club last night, I ate a dreamy, delicious, two-helping worthy dessert. My sister's friend, Ashley, made this Eclair Cake dessert:

It's a great dessert for any pudding-chocolate lover (and who isn't?), but it does need to refrigerate for 24 hours... Trust me, after 3 servings (Yeah, I had the left-over treat today, so I'm definitely not meeting my New Year's Resoultion.) this dessert will be a yummy hit!


Love the Story, Love the Cover, Love It!

Outside of Junior High, have any of you re-read To Kill a Mockingbird? Well, if this newly designed cover doesn't convince you to, maybe this entry can.

I rediscovered one of my favorite novels last summer when Jeff and I re-read this book. We even rented the 1962 movie starring Gregory Peck; we couldn't get enough of the story. (As usual, the movie did not live up to the novel.)

My favorite character of all time? Scout Finch... so endearing, lovable, and inspiring. I had to re-read the ending twice; the first time my tears got in the way.

I love Harper Lee's writing style... there are many scenes that leave you breathless, smiling, and, as mentioned above, aching.

I know. I know. This is a classic, so many of you already know what an amazing book it is. But after my cousin Annelise mentioned that she hadn't yet read it, I remembered my adore for this book.

And, with the newly designed cover, which I love, it's all the more reason to learn more about Scout, Jem, Dill, Atticus, and, of course, Boo...

So, here's a fabulous book recommendation for YOU to read this year...

(If only Jeff loved the name Scout as much as I do, there would be a Scout Pappas in the family... someday.)


Guilty Pleasure #10: 'Beauty and the Geek'

Okay... this one's difficult to admit: I watch 'Beauty and the Geek.' And, yes, I find it very entertaining.
I probably have too much time on my hands, because I've been able to catch up on the first and second seasons of the show thanks to MTV and VH1. For me, even the title of the show is something that I was totally turned-off by! (I'm the girl who refuses to shop, or walk into, a Victoria's Secret due to their sleeze-infilled commercials.)

Really? This show's trying to categorize a group of women as beauties and men as geeks? So, are they trying to exploit people who love Star Trek and have a Master's degree in Linguistics, and then pair them up with Playboy models and Beer spokesmodels and really see how they interact-- entertaining? Absolutely.

They call it a 'social experiment.' Experiment or not, it's hilarious to see how the men (or, geeks if you prefer) go about the tasks- social tasks of course: competing to see who can collect the most phone numbers, picking out an outfit for their partner, or studying pop culture. Then, the girls (or beauties) are challenged to geography tests, learning how to build a rocket, or reading a book to later be quized on.

So, they're teamed up in pairs and compete against each other. Slowly, the couples are kicked off the show until there's only 1 couple left.

I find myself laughing outloud on how the men react to the women and how the women react to their challenges... Honestly though, the entertaining part is seeing how they interact with each other, because they slowly learn to appreciate one another.

Hesitant? I don't blame you... But, I suggest you check out 1 episode, and then decide if you can handle what they call 'Beauty and the Geek.' (In this show, I, not surprisingly, relate more with the so called geeks than those beauties.)


an xBox blissful moment

Jeffrey's Christmas came a bit late this year. I know Jeff secretly wanted Santa to bring him a new Xbox 360; however, Santa was out of a job this year!

But, with a nice Christmas Bonus from his work, and a gift from his parents for Christmas, Jeffrey was able to get his own Xbox. And... I will never see my husband again- jk. I love that he has something he enjoys so much. (Not to mention the group of boys he plays with. They love to give each other high-fives, and yell outloud during the soccer game they play... it's actually quite a funny sight to see. Just the other night, they played for almost 5 hours!)

So, all my ladies out there: should I invest in a little Dance, Dance Revolution?