Thursday, December 31, 2009

2009: The feel of it.

2009 was haaaard. Really hard.
I started the year at home in Scotland where my mum fed me goood.
We came back to a baltic Rexburg, Idaho and got ready to leave forever.
We decided to really make the most of our last few months in the 'burg and I think we succeeded.
Stuart took me away on a romantic weekend where I made some choices about the future of our family. I shared a bit about myself with you - probably more than you ever wanted to know.
I was depressed a lot and worked hard to get my spice back.
Stuart continued to make me laugh when I really needed it.
2009 is the year he crossed over and now loves deli meat.
I had a baby.
I overcame nerves and taught a lesson.
Photography became everything and I gave a great pep talk about it. Photography is so silly!
We celebrated 5 years together and built a tent.
We tried to have some final Rexburg adventures.
Lauren visited and we got up to mischief.
Stuart graduated from BYU-Idaho and I was so proud. Megan took family pics.
We went back to Marysville, WA.
Chiropractic school became official instead of Dental school.
We made our 2009 Summer List.
We blew a lot of bubbles.
I dyed my hair and my mum said "Where did my sensible daughter go?" haha.
I thought I had the gift of tongues/ears.
I got creative over the summer with graphic design and videos and chalk.
I got nostalgic and wrote some lovely words.
I helped a sister achieve a dream and so did you!
There was fireworks, bbq and books.
We met Wendy and Tyty AKA Blue Lily in Seattle - and Wendy visited me again a couple of nights ago.
We explored Gasworks Park, Astoria OR (best day ever), other Oregon spots and Leavenworth.
We bought our first mobile phones, got accepted to Chiropractic School, did one last summer Silly Girls Shoot.
I shared a dream and did some dreaming and shared some secrets of our happy marriage.
We prayed a lot and prayers were answered.
We found a house and moved to California and I love it.
I showed you our house.
I wrote a personal essay and it won an award and made people laugh.
I became a member of Team Decclo and my first design is being printed and stocked right now.
I made a friend and life became very wonderful.
I joined in NaBloPoMo.
I became addicted to Etsy and I also became a cartoon, TWICE and got creative with Christmas cards.
I learned that I have abnormal sleep habits.
I aged a year and celebrated like I was much younger.
I enrolled in school to get my degree in Graphic Design and learned that I am clever.
I kept dreaming - this time about owning a boutique in Scotland.
I entered the Nikon Film Festival and didn't make it to the final 50. Became discouraged.
The Gypsy Feet hosted it's first giveaway.
Andrew came for Christmas with Jenna and we visted Cliff and Joy.
We spent a hilarious night with some Kirby salesmen.
We had Christmas and a couple more adventures with Andrew and Jenna.
And now they're gone and here we are.

That was 2009.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Santa, Santa, Santa Cruuuz...

On Monday we went down to Santa Cruz since this is the last few days of having Andrew and Jenna with us. :( Let's not talk about that.

Santa Cruz is a place I'd like to spend more time at. I'm hoping that I can go down there a few times during this summer.




Then we went for a game of Lazer Tag at the:

Would you like to know my laser tag score? Course you would:
Final Score: 300
Shot: 5 people
Was shot: 30 times
Yeah, it was bad.




Andrew and Stuart and Jenna then played on the Dodgems:



This picture of Andrew causing a wreck cracks me up every time I see it. The cheeky look on his face and how he's the only thing in focus. Oh it's a cracker!





I love Santa Cruz even in the drizzly rain.

When we got home we had pizza for dinner then went to see Sherlock Holmes. It was a very great day.

Quit yer jelly bellying...

Today we went back to The Jelly Belly Factory with Andrew and Jenna. We also met Lindsay, Enos and Lucas there. The place was packed. We queued for an hour and a half. It was mental. The tour groups were really big compared to last time. I think the pictures speak for themselves...
T







Saturday, December 26, 2009

Freakin' Bop It!





Tonight we gave our brains and hearts some exercise by playing an impromptu game of Bop-It...

Friday, December 25, 2009

The Christmas Story

We started the morning off with Jenna lying to Andrew about the time seeing as she knew he wouldn't get up if he thought it was too early.




Happy Christmas from us :)



Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The name game, again:

Lauren, you can thank me for this by allowing me to name your child. I know. I'm the best.

(This is the site I used this time.)

Cameron
Blake
Cillian
Archie
Jonah
Oliver
Brady

Flynn
Harrison
Gavin
Lachlan

Blair
Murray
Rory
Finlay

Fraser
Alfie

Owen
Elliot
Lewis
Reid
Calvin
Nolan
Devin
Fischer


:)

Dyson v Kirby

My favourite housewifey chore is hoovering AKA vacuuming. I have a sweet little pink Dyson which I love, a lot. Last night someone came to our door and asked if they could hoover our carpet for us. I was like, "Erm, ok."
The girl handed me a blue piece of paper and I gave it to Stuart who read it and groaned, "Ugh! Kirrrby! They're going to try sell you a new vacuum cleaner."

"Yeah, they can try."




I'm one of the most laid back people I know. I never really feel pressurised into anything. I rarely loose my patience. That's just me. I was voted "most laid back female" in my last year of high school, just saying. Stuart is panicky and nervous when it comes to talking to people almost always. He takes a really long time to feel comfortable. I won't even mention his nerves when it comes to making phone calls.

When the two lads came in with the hoovers I asked them if I could make it easier for them and not waste their time by letting them know there's no way I'd be buying anything from them. No, no, that's fine they said. They wanted to hoover. Who am I to stop someone from doing my favourite chore that I've neglected for a week?

The boy started by doing a little demonstration by using the Kirby and some round filters to show me how much gross is in my carpets. He did the room and there was about 30 little grubby disks by the end of it. To begin with I was pretty embarrassed but then I thought, "Um, no. Those disks are tiny and when I hoover with the Dyson it fills up half the canister every time even when I hoover every day." I told him that. It looks worse when there's lots of little dirty disks scattered about. I asked him if this was one of the worst he'd seen, he said it was. Hmmm.

He tried hard and explained that there was no pressure for me to buy from him - although he was trying to win a trip to Tahoe. I assured him that he would never be able to pressurise me into anything, ever. He asked why not and I told him that I don't care enough.

His boss called and told him to ask me questions whilst she was on the line. They asked if they could leave us a Kirby for $17 a week would we take it. I said, "No. Whilst I'm sitting here with no health insurance and with a perfectly fine hoover I'm not going to be spending money on a heavy, ugly vacuum." And, to have a boss butt in like that was bad manners. It didn't encourage a purchase.

He did some tests. The banter was brilliant. It was a pretty fun night. He told me that my Dyson is bad for the carpet because it takes dirt off the surface but pushes dirt deeper into the carpet. I told him that even though the Kirby sucks much harder than the Dyson I didn't see how that was good for the carpet either - really, that much suction going over a carpet is going to pull dirt out but it's also going to pull carpet out, right? He said, "no, not at all." His supervisor came in later and said that yes, older Kirby vacuums did damage carpet but this one didn't. The supervisor also said that Dyson was sued recently because they said they used hepa filters in their hoovers but didn't really. We googled that and found no evidence. Bless him.

They also shampoo'd the carpet and I was impressed. I can appreciate a good thing. I'm not against Kirby but I'm not for it. I don't think a carpet needs to be sterile. I just don't care enough and my face is never smashed into the carpet with my mouth open gasping in dirty air from the floor. Their tactics were interesting and I really enjoyed it. Their show and tell experiments are meant to make Kirby look better than anything else. If you fall for that - and can afford to pay $3000 for a vacuum - then that's fine. That's how people sell things.

Over all I think the pro's and con's weigh out against both Dyson and Kirby hence why I don't care either way.

Pros
Dyson:
Quieter
Lighter
Cheaper
No bags to pay for

Kirby:
Sucks harder
Little light on front
Comes with load of attachments
Short bristles kick up more dust I think.

Cons
Dyson:
Made out of plastic - less durable?
No light on front

Kirby:
Expensive
Attachments aren't easy to attach
Heavy
Not as easy to manoeuvre - size, shape and weight?
Noisy

Either way they're both good hoovers and I'm argumentative. I think it was good for Stuart to witness how well I can handle myself. For some reason I think he thinks I can't say "no" if someone's trying to sell me something - like him, haha. He turned very serious when the Kirby kids came into the house. His uptightness was very off putting and weird. A defence mechanism I think. He's dead set against Kirby though probably because the sellers intimidate him.

After the room being hoovered, shampoo'd and hoovered again with the Kirby I did a little vacuuming myself this morning with my "bad" Dyson. It picked up about a quarter of a canister of dirt and fuzz still. Half than usual - over night on a freshly washed and double hoovered carpet.

I still hope Mike gets to go to Tahoe. He put up with a lot when he was here.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

2009


Two Thousand and Nine has been quite the year for us. It's been very exciting. I can't think of very many non-exciting things that happened to be honest.

I'm so happy with all the opportunities 2009 gave us. From starting the year in Scotland to graduating and moving into a little house to meeting some new best friends along the way and to finishing up the year with my big brother and his lovely girlfriend, Jenna here. 2010 has some big shoes to fill and I fully intend to make it a year to remember in the best ways possible. I'm so excited about it.

I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season and are able to reflect back on the year with fondness.

Friday, December 11, 2009

My Andy Pandy pudding and pie...


Right now I'm so excited! We're getting ready to head down to Bakersfield to pick up my big brother and his girly friend to bring them up here for Christmas. I can hardly wait to be smothered in a big brother hug by him!

Andrew and I walked to school every day together when we were in high school together and he always waited for me after school to walk home with me. One time in high school I told him I fancied one of his friends. During lunch he picked the boy up like a rag doll and shouted across the canteen, "Is this him Laura?!" I died and ran out of the lunch room. Thanks Andrew.


He was my protector. No-one ever bothered me because they knew he'd beat them up if they did. When you walk along the street at night with him people cross the road with fear. He's hard as nails but he's also very generous and kind. His heart is big. I love him.

I'm so excited to have him here. I've not been mooned in a while :)

I love you, Andy (and I love you too Scott, when are you visiting so I can tell everyone what a big teddy bear you are too?)

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Give said the little Laura...

Hey everyone! I just wanted to let you know that tomorrow The Gypsy Feet is hosting it's (our?) first GIVEAWAY! I'm very excited so check back and spread the word! So, if you want to win and you love girlie things DON'T FORGET! It's going to be quite a fast giveaway so this is your warning - if you want to know as soon as it's posted go and follow us!

Ready, set....

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Education

The final part of my enrolment paperwork was completed last night and to be honest I was a little nervous about it. Nervous for no reason. The part we were waiting on was my transcript evaluation to say that I did indeed graduate high school, which I obviously did.

Part of why I'd been putting off going to school here is that I didn't know what my GPA was seeing as we don't do that in the UK and to be honest, my GPA wouldn't be that good. I've never got higher than a C in any subject ever.

GPA is everything here. Stuart's always talking about his. He's really good at keeping it nice an high. I never felt like I could compete. I didn't want to see my GPA because it would prove how much more stupid I am than Stuart - who is not stupid at all.

The transcript evaluation arrived and on it gave me my GPA, which I wasn't expecting.

Who would like to guess Laid-back Laura's GPA? Go on, guess. Part of me doesn't want to tell you so you'll guess but then part of me is worried you might think I really am stupid... Uuuum...

My GPA is 3.5.

I know!

I guess that goes to show how much different - and may I say "better" British schooling is? I knew it was different and better but didn't realise that my Scottish "C" is actually an American "B". That's quite a big difference I think. When I say "C" I mean the majority of my grades are that, a few are a bit worse.

I also have 15 college credit hours. I don't know what that means but it's something.

I'm clever in America!!

We *heart* Christmas


Laura learned a new trick today! Wooooo!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

I love me some Dashboard.

They're playing an acoustic set in San Francisco today at Borders and I want to go. Hmph!

Belle Of The Boulevard

Dashboard Confessional | MySpace Music Videos



My quest for the best:

I was thinking a while ago - I knooow! - when we were considering moving back to the motherland of what I would do there. Right now moving back isn't on the cards but there's a part of me that really wants to fulfill the dream I have of opening a shop over there. It would be so cool! I'd stock it with all my favourite American things and if you think about that it's pretty genius seeing as America is cheaper than Scotland. My main reason for wanting to do that is so I could share it with people because life's tough enough as it is. By stocking my little shop full of American goodness I'd be able to sell it at a decent price too. It'd be very affordable.

One of the things I've been excited about this week is Scentsy. I love the idea of that. The warmers wouldn't work in the UK because we used different plugs but still, the idea is great and the prices aren't bad either. 

My shop would have lots of great things in it. In my mind I already know what building I'd have it in in my hometown. I can see it! I don't think people really have time for hobbies as much as they do here so I'd stock it full of things to help encourage a creative outlets. I'd have ladies night where we'd do little classes and eat baked goods from my mum's kitchen. It'd be great. Someday I really want to achieve this even if we don't move back. It's still possible.

So along with Etsy this giving season add Scentsy. I love how they both sound alike. It's meant to be!