October 2011

And what an October it was! Travel was my new best friend this past month.

First stop: Seattle
Not only did I get to spend a fun day out in the city with a large bunch of the Campbell clan, I was also fortunate to attend my cousin Jenny's wedding. It was a perfect, family filled weekend.

Second stop: New York City
SO much to see-- I don't even know where to begin. Phantom of the Opera, Opera at the Met, eating, more eating, Central Park, a protest, Ann Curry obsessing over Noah, and everything else. Thank you Laura and Cort (and Cort's family) for letting me tag along.

Third stop: Long Beach/Disneyland
A little tour of the Queen Mary and a solid visit to Disneyland with the gang was much needed--and just as great as you would imagine. My friends are hilarious and a lot of fun to travel with.


The Jim...


Well I'm back at the gym. Mostly I prefer working out while doing something outside-- it's prettier and I tend to do my best thinking... but this is also a problem because I walk at slower paces, stop to look at flowers, and then I wind up sitting on the grass. To get a solid workout I've come to realize that I rely on the gym and the intimidation of working out among extremely fit people. I really do dread the gym though and it is because of the:

1. Humidity. Not nature's humidity, but human humidity. This means that people are sweating and breathing and releasing gases and it stresses me out.
2. Noises. All sorts of hideous noises that those making them should be embarrassed about. They're not. I could be making a huge storm of noises while working out but my problematic pride and sense of decency keeps it all in.
3. Sweaty machines. Maybe 10% of machine users wipe down after use.
4. Heavy lifters. Certain men who go straight to the weight room to lift a thousand pounds above their head... yes, strong. Here's the problem guys-- you end up looking a little off balance with huge, broad shoulders and arms, but tiny little legs. Do some cardio too. PS. You are the culprits behind the worst of the worst noises.
5. Women who work out in dangly earrings.

...number 6. Number 6 is my new friend Jim (hence the title)... Oh Jim. He's no spring chicken. I'd say he's at least, LEAST in his late 70s and he's in love with me. Usually men like this don't bother me so much because they are more of a grandfatherly type that want to compliment and offer advice. Not Jim. The fact that I actually look like a sweaty teenage boy at the gym seems to escape his attention completely. On several occasions he has mentioned that he wants a younger wife, he loves brown-haired girls, and he could give me all the security I need, financially speaking. This has forced me to create a really fancy lie about how I'm engaged to a younger man who has lots of money and we might be moving to Europe. Yeah I've taken it way too far. Oh and Jim can't ever remember my name. Most days he calls me Kimmy, but every now and then I'm Emmy, Emily, Angie, today I was Annie. Close Jim, real close.

On a totally different note-- I want to give Amanda a BIG birthday shout-out. XO!

Have a great Tuesday everybody.


Thoughts for Friday

Is it just me or does paste just not taste as good as it used to?...
*If you don't know where that quote comes from then you haven't lived.

I'm writing this from my office at Barnes and Noble cafe. This time it is the B&N off of Fort Union. Unfortunately I've come after the lunch hour when, apparently, Cookie Monster eats a million cookies at every table, leaving a sea of crumbs on every chair and in every crevice. Oh Cookie Monster.

I had a dream last night that I cut my hair to chin length. I love short hair on girls, and if you are reading this right now and have chin length hair I probably love it on you... However, I have not been blessed with easy going, do what you want kind of hair. I have inherited my father's horse textured, massive, velcro mane. Anytime I put a mustache on myself (yes, this has happened more than you'd think) I unmistakably resemble Harry Potter's Hagrid. I've always had a soft spot for him because of this. Back to the chin length nightmare... It was horrendous. I think I'll keep it long for a good long while.

What's the worst thing about going for a walk/run on a trail that loops around you ask? That answer is easy-- seeing the same people pass by and feeling obligated to say "Hi" and then both giggling a little bit to cover up what you're really thinking: If I have to pass you, say "hi" and giggle one more time I'm going to ____________ (insert most dramatic, upsetting thing you can think of).

Last thought of the day: The best movies were made in the 70s and 80s. Don't argue with me. Everything else is just trying a bit too hard. If you need proof of this why don't you go see Cowboys and Aliens or Captain America. Not both, you might explode.

P.S. This is Jimmy McMillan, a real politician. The beard is real too. America!



I've never been a "car person..." (car person= a person who border line has romantic feelings for cars and knows what "horse power" means). No, I'm not a car person... I just love a good drive. Seriously. A drive up and down the Wasatch Mtn range listening to music or just sitting in silence is my idea of an awesomely good time. If someone is with me, even better.

A few things I've observed about drivers and driving:

I believe that everyone's true self comes out on the road. I laughed about this thought out loud the other day while driving. I mean think about it-- we are confined to one, two, three lanes at most, and limited to the speed we can go. Lights tell us to stop, orange cones direct us, and yield signs force us to be kind. Yet with all the rules on the road we still have the freedom to flip someone off at a 4-way stop, ride another car's bumper, and honk at a bicyclist drifting into traffic (disclaimer: I do none of these... correction-- I try not to do any of these). Because we are safely within the confines of our own car it somehow makes outrageous behavior acceptable and then quickly forgotten. Are we closet angry people?

Speed says a lot about drivers and definitely goes hand in hand with the type of car driven. I'll be the first to admit that the very second a van of any kind pulls in front of me I am immediately outraged and swerve into the next lane. If any of you are psychologist or analytical in anyway please analyze that and also what it means if I feel the need to be the first to punch my gas and take off at a green light, leading the pack of cars behind me...Every Single Time. Posible control issues, yeah probably. And vans... issues with inevitably needing one someday? Also yes, probably.

Music and driving, what a good combination that can turn so wrong so fast. Example: The other day I pulled up to a light and the fella in the next lane is listening to grunge music so loud that I can feel it pulsing through my steering wheel and subsequently into my head. I won't tolerate grunge and believe only the worst kind of people enjoy it (many of whom are faking it)... but without warning I'm sucked into this guy's world. He looks over at me banging his head and assuming that I'm seeing life through his eyes. Green light-- eat my dust.

Lately I've considered the idea of flying lessons just to take this whole experience to the sky. Most likely that won't happen for a while-- if it even does... I still believe that planes are held up by magic.

My last thoughts on driving: always buckle up, and remember that car stickers are like body tattoos-- most if not all are regrettable.


A Conversation

This is the conversation I had with Anna this morning while getting ready:

Me: What if I gave you a pet spider for your birthday? That would be fun.

Anna: I'd flush it down the toilet.

Me: But what if I spent $200 on it?

Anna: That doesn't matter. A spider would be the ultimate worst present that anyone could ever give me... and I was once given a plaid shirt from Hollister.


Worth Watching

TV these days is more of a nuisance than anything. However, these I will watch:

Thank goodness for PBS, I guess.


Happy 4th!

I'm pretty sure I am repeating this post from the last 4th of July, but I just can't get enough of Langston Hughes-- my favorite American.

The Negro Speaks of Rivers

I've known rivers:
I've known rivers ancient as the world and older than the flow of blood in human veins.

My soul has grown deep like the rivers.

I bathed in the Euphrates when dawns were young.
I built my hut near the Congo and it lulled me to sleep.
I looked upon the Nile and raised the pyramids above it.
I heard the singing of the Mississippi when Abe Lincoln went down to New Orleans,
and I've seen its muddy bosom turn all golden in the sunset.

I've known rivers:
Ancient, dusky rivers.

My soul has grown deep like the rivers.


Scott Campbell, what a guy!

Happy Father's Day-- to the greatest dad in the world. Truly. The picture above is of my dad playing in the stream in our backyard. Okay, maybe not "playing"... more like rearranging rocks to prevent a flood. But that's just the kind of dad he is-- always rearranging things to make life easier and better for his family. You really are the best and I love you!


Life on the Farm

In an attempt to learn as much as I can about farm life (until I have one of my own), I have joined a group of volunteers at Ching Farm Rescue & Sanctuary. It's possible that some of my funniest and finest stories may come from this experience.

My first day on duty was spent training with the pigs. I don't know that I can adequately express how delightful and interesting pigs are. I think I was in a constant state of shock and laughter while trying to feed, water, clean and play with the pigs. Most of them have teen angst (seriously) and refuse to come out of their pens, only to eat. My favorite pig, Curtis, lives in a pen all by himself because he doesn't socialize well due to previous and abusive owners. Curtis sleeps in longer than anyone other animal on the farm, and to get him out to eat one has to slowly open his pen and let the sunlight stream in gently. "Wake up Curtis... time to get up..." He lifts his head and opens one eye... obviously annoyed that you woke him. "Don't you want breakfast??" He opens his other eye and his eyebrows raise... "Yes, you want breakfast." He takes about 15 minutes to realize that he has legs and can walk. Finally, he makes his way into the sunlight and grunts with more annoyance. Oh Curtis, you make me want a farm even more.

So yes, I'm one of those people who loves animals almost more than people. Farming seems so rewarding in so many ways. I also think it provides one of the best forms of physical exercise-- the way we were meant to exercise. Really. I can't wait to have my own little farm someday. Everyone and their dog is invited ;)


I saved a bee today.

As I swirl my toe around in the water at the edge of the pool in my back yard, I try to focus on the ever growing ripples and the reflection of colors as the water moves. Beep boop bop. No, too much to think about. Darn. I used to be good at relaxing.

For the past four months my mind has been running on adrenaline, skipping from thought to thought. I have student teaching to thank for this.

Instead of concentrating on the water, my mind thinks about what my students might be working on this very minute. Wondering if Trent is acting calm today...did Jose turn in his last assignment...is Hattie back from being sick for way too long... did the supply order of glue ever ship... beep boop bop.

Now that my semester has ended I suddenly feel oddly guilty for not having to think constantly and acting quickly. If I wanted to, I could sleep in a little... eh, feels weird. I could stare at my ceiling and listen to music for hours if I felt like it... but why would I? Forcing myself to unwind and relax a little has been way more difficult than it should be.

So here I am... jumping from thought to thought, and there he is out of the corner of my eye. A bee. He's struggling in the water, moving with the kicking waves I've now created with both feet. Immediately I slide deeper into the pool with my hand outstretched to scoop him up, but soon realize this could backfire with a sting. Instead I reach back and grab my flip flop to elevate him from the water and place him on the pavement next to me. No movement. I panic a little. With my finger I give him a little nudge away from the puddle he's created and he quickly springs to life, flicking water off his wings and away he goes. Just like that, he's gone. I feel a little hurt, somewhat expecting that he would fly up eye level with me and nod his antennae in gratitude of my efforts.

I felt so involved and then immediately cut off from his life. A metaphor to student teaching perhaps.

Beeb boop bop. So here I am, trying to relax. Attempting to get my own ducks in a row after months of attempting to keep 150 pre-teen ducks in a row. This isn't easy. Thankfully I'll be here in a couple of weeks with the family, and I can't help but think relaxing will come naturally when all I have to worry about is the swim suit I'll wear that day.

Boy oh boy.

A fun little side story: Last weekend while I was in Sedona, my friend and I decided to get our aura photos taken and read by an energy psychic. I realize how hippie-like and crazy this may sound, but those of you who know me wouldn't expect anything less. This is my aura photo:

*You'll have to ignore the hovering shadow of me leaning over and taking a picture of the aura.

Notice the massive amount of yellow.. apparently this means that my mind has been overstimulated with analytical thinking and organization. The energy lady asked me if I had been doing any kind of workshop or internship (hello-- student teaching). She also mentioned that the red and pink surrounding the yellow is my suppressed artistic creativity which she said will come back in focus soon. Interesting. The green at the bottom indicates that I'm anticipating a big change in the near future, such as career change or moving. Both in my case. And last of all, the brown at the center represents my reliance on nature and the earth to stay centered and happy. She suggested I keep a small farm in order to maintain my happiness. I was kind of blown away by how accurate everything was, and I didn't say a word throughout the entire thing. I didn't even give her my name. Not that I suggest you get one taken and live or die by this kind of thing, but it is interesting what our energy says about ourselves.

The end.


Sedona and Jerome

I took a little trip north to Sedona and the ghost town of Jerome, AZ this past weekend with a dear friend. Below are some photos of our adventure. Naturally, I cried standing atop one of the rocks in Sedona... I mean look at it! I highly suggest going for a weekend if you're a fan of fun and beauty.




Fun Things

These are my two favorite things that happened to me this week:

This gal's new blog

and this little golden nugget:

p.s. yes, the sassy kid dancing up a storm is indeed Carlton from Fresh Prince of Bel Air.


Crazy Irish

A great scene from one of Ireland's finest films: Waking Ned Devine

Happy St. Patrick's Day!


I have a new love...

My iphone. How sad is it that I love something so nonhuman. I've held off as long as possible with technology, but my old phone just wasn't doing it for me anymore... and it was this terrible maroon/red colored phone that I could barely handle putting near my face. Don't get me started with the color maroon.

Now I carry so much power at my fingertips... so much so that it kind of scares me. I'm fascinated enough with the fact that I can have a phone and ipod in one, let alone the millions of apps available. Amazing.

Sorry to all of those who I ignore during my first week with my iphone... we have a lot of getting to know each other to do. Kidding-- I really don't want to be that kind of person-- eh, but I make no promises.


Happy Birthday Laura!

I've never known anyone so caring and loving as you. Thank you for being the best big sister I could ever ask for, and for always looking out for me. I love you.

p.s. sweet bangs.



Student teaching has been an up and down emotional roller coaster for me. I have learned that teachers hardly sleep, bring work home with them, and are greatly underpaid. However, there are so many rewarding aspects of teaching, and especially for art teachers. Perhaps my favorite part of teaching is just getting to know the kids and having conversations with them about life. Granted, you ask a junior high student about life and 9 times out of 10 you're going to hear about either Justin Bieber or Playstation. But still, great little conversations.

Last week one of my special ed. students came up and pulled me aside to tell me all about Mary Poppins. I learned what year it was made, that his grandparents went on a date to the movie, the release date of the special edition DVD... oh and it went on. I loved it though, he was so into Mary Poppins. So much so, that he drew this and gave it to me at the end of class:

It doesn't take much for me to get choked up over children's art work, and this one did it for me. So, so sweet.

P.S. I've started a new blog entitled the paleo project. It's a work in progress, but check it out and give me shout-outs of support throughout my paleo journey ;)



If you know me well, you know I have a dream of learning the banjo. When this happens, this song will be the first I play:


The Youth

I love to poke fun at my students who are obsessed with Justin Bieber. I love to tell them that he's a toddler, or a hologram. I'm totally weirded out by the whole "Bieber fever" thing, but then I'm reminded of my youth...

Behold, a journal entry of mine from junior high-- heads up for the exclamation points after every sentence:

June 17, 2000
5 handsome, charming, and talented young men from all over America, each with a passion for singing and a dream of stardom come to Salt Lake City's Rice-Eccles stadium to give Utah the best night of their life!

Yes! NSYNC finally came! It is Saturday, June 17, 2000! I will go through the whole day w/ you! I woke up this morning excited as heck! I was going to go to the NSYNC concert at 7:30 w/ Katherine Wheatley, Heather Crowley, and Ashley McKell!

It was such a long time until I went to the concert so I wanted to kill some time, but I didn't want to get ready yet because I didn't want to ruin my clothes for the concert! So I played on the computer, played w/ Greeley, practiced the piano, sat by my window for an hour, cleaned my room, listened to NSYNC on my CD player! By this time it was about 3:45! So I decided to slowly get ready! I took a bath, shaved my legs, put lotion all over me, washed my hair, put my hair up, ironed my shirt, and by this time it was almost 5:00! Katherine was going to be here to pick me up at 5:30 so I hurried and go all my stuff together!

(I'll skip some details and get to a great, great part)

We waited for what seemed like hours and then Pink was supposed to be the opening act but she was sick, so instead they had a guy named Presley sing and then another guy named Ron. It made me made because they didn't even have Sisqo sing and he was supposed to!!

(Skipping ahead)...

They interacted with us so much and they made us feel special! They have my respect and I love them and I love my friends! BYE BYE BYE!

A real choice time in life, as you can see.


To all the fictitious men I ever loved.

In order from my first love to my latest, Happy Valentine's Day...