Saturday, February 28, 2009

Little Babies and Kids

I consider myself really good with kids. I can usually become best friends with them in a matter of minutes. With kids in my ward or kids I only see rarely, it takes a little longer to connect, but usually I still end up winning them over. It's a gift I guess. My tough little nephew Andrew, my beautiful niece MacKenzie, and my cousin Reeve's smiley daughter Sammy all seem to enjoy my company, as you can see.
But lately, I have not been able to connect with too many little kids or babies, with the exception of my cute curly-haired nephew Dominic (sorry I don't have a picture of him). I think I'm losing my touch. My young niece Idil, especially, does not seem impressed with me. She gave me the stink eye several times, which I caught perfectly with this picture. With each picture I tried to take came high-pitched pleas from me to smile with my usual playfulness with kids, but obviously to no fruition. The picture makes me laugh more than anything else. I hope my other new adorable niece Brynlee will like me.
I'm surprised how babies' personalities show up so early. I don't have kids of my own yet (and no I am not expecting at the moment), but I can already tell that if I have a baby like Idil, a baby that I just can't connect with, raising kids will be difficult. I keep wondering what my kids will be like someday, and I hope that I will be ready and able to meet all their individual needs.

At our family reunion.
At the Phoenix Zoolights.
At our family reunion.
On Christmas day.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

The Drunk

When Tracy started his first day at WSU, his geology classmates found out that we are LDS. I was surprised when Tracy told me that several of his new friends shared their concern for our ability to make friends in the geology department since we don't drink and since the geology department here is notorious for their drinking. Since the bars in Washington forbid smoking inside, we figured that we could still go out with them and have a good time--even if we don't drink.
Well, we went to a bar with them last night, and I felt pretty good about myself and our standards. Although a lot of people in our group drank a few beers, they maintained control of themselves, respected our decision not to drink, and acted like civilized human beings.
But looking around at the other groups, I genuinely questioned why anyone would ever want to even flirt with the possibility of overdrinking. Several men yelled at the top of their lungs for no reason at TVs or the bartenders or whoever was there.
We saw a really unattractive old man (probably in his sixties) wrap his arms around five different girls (probably in their twenties) at different times and dirty dance with a few of them. Talk about disgusting! I wanted to hurl.
I wondered how many beers he had had when I asked myself the real question: how many beers had those girls had that would make them feel that dancing with this gross old man was a good idea.
Anyway, people will continue to drink despite how stupid they act, and I will continue to shake my head, point and laugh, and wonder why someone would willingly do such a thing to themselves. I'll drink to that! Cheers!!

Monday, February 16, 2009

The English language

I don’t know about you, but if I didn’t natively speak English I would loathe learning to speak it. I have worked at university writing centers for over a year now, and I have discovered just how jumbled and confusing English really is. I willingly and readily acknowledge that American Standard English is often inconsistent, difficult, and illogical. With this strong respect that I bear for all those who dare to take on the mammoth task of learning English, I still find little speech and writing mistakes funny. Who hasn’t laughed during A Christmas Story when the waiters attempt to sing “Deck the Halls” and “Jingle Bells”? (Or should I say “Deck the Horrs” and “Jingre Berrs”?) On, posters, signs, buildings, and labels attempt to use American Standard English. While these signs might make sense to those who speak the same variety of English, to the rest of us, some don’t make one bit of sense. I have been amused on for hours.
Enjoy a few crowned jewels from this website.

Your Happy Is Our Business, so take your sad somewhere else!!
Their products don't look that bad. Is cutting yourself really necessary?
Romance definitely requires juicy.
Those have to be hard to swallow.
I like how Dried Japanese is a product of Mexico. I bet these taste like soy sauce.
There are tons more that are ridiculously funny.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

25 Facts about Lacey (and Tracy)

These kinds of things have been going around in e-mails and other stuff, but this one is from my profile on facebook, so I thought I’d post a modified version on my blog for those who don’t have facebook accounts. These are 25 random facts about me and Tracy.

1. When I was little, I wished that my name was Elizabeth (sorry Mom and Dad). I love this name and plan on using it for one of my daughters.
I think Tracy is okay with his name now although he was teased when he was a kid. He and I have decided not to push the gender name line with our kids like his parents did.
Yes, our names rhyme. How cute.

2. I seem destined to be a nomad. Both my dad and Tracy's dad were in the air force when we were little. Although my parents have settled down in Mesa and Tracy's have settled in Kennewick, Tracy and I have carried on this nomadic tradition. We just moved to Washington from Utah in December and will be moving to Texas in the summer.

3. When I was young, my sister and I used to pretend to be ice skaters. She would claim Nancy Kerrigan and tell me that I would have to be Tonya Harding. Let’s just say that after the whole attack thing, I didn’t want to play ice skaters with her anymore.

4. From my freshman year in high school, I wanted to major in English literature. It's my first academic love. In college I discovered that I wanted to edit. Now that I’m done with college, I really miss discussions about literature, but I can't wait to edit for real.
Tracy loves geology. He gets pretty animated when he talks about rocks. I am amazed at how much he knows. He fits right in with all his classmates.

5. Don't ask me what my favorite book is, because I honestly can't decide. I like a lot of them and would no sooner be able to choose a favorite song or movie.
Tracy really likes Clive Cussler books.

6. I have found that I am attracted to murder TV shows. My favorite shows are Law & Order (because of Jack McCoy—yeah!), CSI:NY, Monk, and Psych (these last two are comedies, but they still solve murder mysteries). Some are outside this norm, such as Gilmore Girls and Mythbusters, but most of them fit within the murder mystery category.
Tracy likes the same shows I like (except Gilmore Girls), and he loves to watch sports—constantly.

7. My favorite candy is Reese's, but I also like Snickers and Twix. Tracy's favorite candy changes every couple of months.

8. I am a cry baby. Tracy is surprised if I don’t cry while we watch a sad ending to a movie or if I get a really sweet, heartfelt gift. I cry a lot—good and bad.
I’ve never seen Tracy cry, but I saw tears in his eyes when I received my endowment and when we were married. So sweet!

9. My favorite color is green. No ifs, ands, or buts. Blue is my second favorite and yellow my third, but green is by far the best color ever.
Tracy's favorite color is yellow. He particularly likes wearing bright yellow t-shirts playing sports, so everyone can see him.

10. Since childhood and even into adulthood, I have been caught singing my heart out by several people who were not my parents, siblings, or other relatives. I would be quiet in humiliation for awhile and try to act like it never happened. It didn’t work, because most of the time the same people would catch me a few more times after that.
Tracy still uses a phrase that he used when he was three years old. "I broke," which means that he's tired or hurt. Tracy talks like a little kid sometimes—it’s cute.

11. Several times when I was little, I came home from school crying and believing that I was going to go to hell. Once, I drank a Mountain Dew and later realized it had caffeine in it. Once, I swore at school. Once, I fell into the creek that was behind our house on Sunday, and I came in dripping wet and crying to my mom, "I'm sorry I went swimming on Sunday!" I have kept some of that dramatic remorse with me.

12. I hate numbers unless they’re in Sudoku. I can’t stand math, finances, or taxes. My dad had to walk me through each step of taxes. When we go to the bank, Tracy has to explain the terms to me, and I just nod my head. Although I hate dealing with these things, I do because I have to. But I’m not happy about it.

13. If our plan matters, we want a big family—big meaning four to six kids with at least two boys (to break the Wulf one-boy curse).

14. I hate playing basketball, mostly because people think I should play because I'm tall. I love volleyball more than any other sport. It's awesome. I like ultimate Frisbee, soccer (although I’m crappy at it), and tennis (although I crappy at it), archery, and some other sports.
Tracy is pretty much good at everything he does—football, basketball, Frisbee, soccer, etc. However, his knee has been hurt several times, and he has debilitating shin splints.

15. I have been to Disneyland twice. Once in high school with my friend Jessi and on my honeymoon. Tracy has been there twice or three times. I kinda like that we've only been there a few times. It makes it more special.

16. I love to go shopping with people but rarely buy anything, unless I really like it, it is inexpensive (which is pretty rare), or it is for someone else. I hate spending money. For me shopping is more about the interaction with my shopping companion than the stuff, again unless I find something I really like and it’s inexpensive.

17. Tracy hates chance games. We played Yahtzee the other night, and he almost swore at the dice. He likes strategy games, when he has control over his progress. He pouts if he loses to me, which he usually does. He's funny with games.

18. During my bridal shower in Mesa, my mom quizzed me about Tracy, and I got only one or two questions wrong. (By the way, one was “Which side of the bed does Tracy want to sleep on?”) I answered the others word-for-word exactly the way Tracy answered them. Do I know my husband or what?

19. I’ve decided that having all the time in the world and no money in the world is the worst combination in the world.

20. Two of my favorite games when I was little were with my dad and my older brother. I would run up to my dad with my arms up and say, “King Louis! King Louis!” because of the ape from Jungle Book. He would tickle me; I would run away, run back, and do it again. I would also run up to my brother and throw bean bags at him, which he then would throw back much harder and faster. He aimed to kill. This torture that I thought was entertainment lasted for hours.

21. I would like to write books, but I think I rarely have a publishable idea, and I don’t think that I could write that many pages of text. Perhaps that’s why I enjoy editing so much—I don’t have to come up with ideas on my own, and I can comment and add to the idea with collaboration with author. But I’ll keep working on the writing thing.

22. I like to daydream and get lost in my own thoughts a lot. The fiction of the imagination, novels, and films are really fun and a good escape for me. Very cathartic.

23. I like to organize and clean a small part of my house at a time. I like throwing away stuff I don’t need anymore. This is also very cathartic.

24. Our favorite dessert, hands down, is ice cream. We love ice cream. Chocolate and cookies are good too, for sure, but ice cream is the ultimate dessert, the perfect ending to both a good day and a bad day.

25. I love my husband, family, and friends more than anything in the world! I have a lot to be grateful for.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Lego explanation

Sorry about the little to no explanation about the Lego house thing. When Tracy and I had been in our new apartment in Pullman, we decided to put legos together. It took us two hours, but finally we made our dream house, if we enlarged by a factor of about 2,000, of course.

Lego house

I had a Jack Sparrow Lego guy, so we decided to make him the owner of the house.
Check out my beautiful garden.
Come on in!!

Monday, February 2, 2009

Graduate school

Tracy has recently completed his first graduate assignment. It took him about six or seven hours to finish, but he got 90 percent on the assignment. Although he didn't get the highest grade in the class, he's happy with his work, and I think he did really well for someone who hasn't been in school for two years. Hooray for Tracy!!
Tracy is also working on submitting lab research and field work grants. Let's hope he gets those grants, because he thinks that his field work alone will cost over $3,500. Lab research will cost about $9,000 if I remember correctly (this large number is hard to forget or misremember). Ouch!