thankful thursday

things i am thankful for this week:

1. surviving the car wreck and massive head wound harry-- so SO thankful that all of my "peeps" survived it safe and sound--i am grateful that someone upstairs was watching out for us.

2. people feeling sorry for you when you suck up for sympathy, and they give you great stuff--so many cool things came my way last week

one of my blogging bff's who lives just down the street, jodi, dropped off some serious snack to me--how did she know i love those ghiradelli squares? btw: that bag may or may not be already open and emptied. allegedly. thank you my dear for making my day.  and for allowing abbey to pose for my blog as it's one of her absolute favorite things to do. (and just look at her--she's a natural.  i adore this little girl.)

and, now for the Pièce de résistance : my friend, dannielle, the gal who likes to give horrible children's birthday gifts just like me brought a treasure so rare and so pure that it's only right that it now belongs to abbey: 

i couldn't have been more pleased that dannielle bought this for me.  she knows that i will be the one to appreciate it the most and i DO.  also i'm a tiny bit terrified.

3. anne taintor. the woman is a genius. she makes me laugh. lots. lol.

4. holy batman movie, batman!! this movie was so kick a in such a major way--we went with besties colby & kristin and steve & kamari last saturday and i have two words: christian bale.

oh, MY. that man is something else, i tell you. is he as hot as russ? well, no, of course not silly!

 but he comes in a close second.

i must also say this: heath ledger lived up to EVERYTHING the critics said: he was twisted and warped and perfect in the role and if he doesn't win an oscar, i'll be shocked.

5. a fun lunch meeting up with OG stg bloggers ashlynn, erica, and carly:


lana taught me to always clean the house before leaving on vacation.

when i was a little girl, i always remember the absolute cleaning frenzy that happened right before we left for a family vacay. we all had to have our rooms cleaned and clothes hung up ( a really hard thing for mindi in her teenage years) and my mom would have the house vacuumed and scrubbed and shining like the chrysler building.

i also remember complaining and whining wondering why were we cleaning? and this is dumb!! lana would just smile and say in her sweet, cheerful voice, "won't it be nice to come home to a clean house? it will feel so good!" i didn't buy it for a second as there was really nothing in my life that was clean or orderly and i didn't think it would feel any different than not cleaning.  wtf.

then russ and i got married and moved into a teensy-tinsy studio-type apartment in the back office of a motel--we were the night managers (translation: nobody on the front desk after 11pm, and people would just ring a bell and poor russ would have to drag his butt to the window. brutal. but free rent.) and i worked for skywest airlines, so we had lots of opportunities to fly places on the weekends.

one weekend before flying out the house was a wreck.  dishes, clothes, clutter, dirty bathroom--the whole works. we said, "what the heck?", walked out the door and boarded a plane to salt lake and the z dance club and bigger and better things.

 we got home late sunday night, exhausted and cranky after getting bumped off of two different flights from slc to sgu and ending up flying into cedar and having someone come and pick us up, and i walked in and saw THE MESS.

it was 11:00 p.m. and i had to be to work at 5:00.  i didn't have any clean garments left and we forgot to get milk for cereal in the morning and i was exhausted and emotional and i burst into tears when i walked into the bedroom and remembered that we didn't have sheets on our bed and it was simply just too much.  i had a complete melt-down, cried myself to sleep and never left my house messy before a trip again.  EVER. 

now every time we leave the house to travel, which in our business is a little bit more than some, our house is sparkling and shiny and clean. and my kids complain and whine a little--good thing to know that some things never change. and there is still no better feeling in the world than when you come home to a clean crib. also cleaning is good for them and then i don't have to do it but let's not concentrate on that......

so i guess i AM turning into my mother a tiny little bit after all.....which is actually quite lovely because i'm the daughter who is the least like my mother (just ask kenny miller) and i will take any small victory i can.  

now if i can just master lana's sweet driving skills of one foot on the brake and one foot on the pedal........ (not kidding) 

russ and mindi drive stein ericksen's little black lexus convertible and nearly lose their minds

do you see this face? this is one happy man. yes, this is one happy man driving a sporty, expensive car that is not his. fo FREE. yup, instant love.

this is the 2008 lexus sc430 that the stein eriksen lodge loans out to certain guests. i'm not really sure why they offered it to us. all i know is that in all, ALL of our 17 years of hotel staying, we have never-ever-ever been offered something of this magnitude. and we couldn't have been more thrilled.  it was a watershed moment for russ and i and we immediately accepted, both completely giddy.

it was sleek and it was sexy and russ had the biggest grin on his face the whole time.  it was a convertible and we took the top down and cruised during this unbelievably beautiful, starry night in park city.  it was black, it was sexy, and it was fast:

russ must have said about 13 million times how much he loved the color of the interior--i mentioned that all we have to do is come up with roughly $70,000 and it could be ours.

we had a rest stop at the park city high school parking lot and tried to get a photo......

of a black car.

in the dark. 

and here i am demonstrating how incredibly bored and unimpressed i was with the whole situation. 

this was such a wonderfully fun and completely unexpected experience for russ and i.  we love to travel and we love it even more when we can make friends with nice properties like this one who does nice things for unimportant people like us.  i will never forget how it felt to drive fast up the mountain to our hotel with the wind in our hair on a beautiful july night. nobody appreciates these type of things more than me. except for him.  i love sharing these moments with him. 

"look at that ginormous tub!" or PARK CITY 2008 complete with video tour of our stein eriksen suite

every summer we take our girls up to park city for the week--we love getting out of the heat and up into the mountains. we also love the wonderful connections we've made with managers of these other properties because they take care of us.  in a really big way.

this year we got a chance to upgrade mid-trip to the stein eriksen lodge which was all THAT and a bag of proverbial chips--since our camera was on the fritz, to see some pretty sweet photos of the place, clickity HERE

now, this next part is what my mother would call the "vain and pretentious" part of blogging--i call it the "i want my kids to look back and remember how great they had it this trip" part. it's just a video snippet i took of our wicked fly 3,000 sq. feet presidential suite.

if  our vanity offends you?   skip this:

the girls love taking the free trolley up and down main street and stopping into the marriott time-share office there to look at their live owl. what i don't like is how they are trying to talk me into a presentation the whole time, even as i am yelling, "MY HUSBAND WORKS FOR MARRIOTT! DON'T WASTE YOUR BREATH!" good thing we can pay $10 so the girls can hold him and get a photo but so so worth it.

other things the girls loved: watching more episodes of "lost",  riding up to the top of the mountain on the main street chair lift, seeing 'space chimps', and swimming at the stein pool where our cabana boy named jason basically attended to their every little whim and fancy. the guy was 24 years old and he played those little girls like a violin--in fact, i'd say he's just about the best i've seen at a job like that. every time we'd turn around he'd be there with a fresh towel, or chilled water bottles, or pool toys for the kids, or fruit-kabobs on a platter. it was pretty uptown, and katie thought he was the cat's pajamas.  rbc was just a little bit annoyed because he knew it would just mean more $$$ out of his pocket come tip time. but we could not have asked for more--we loved every single second and the girls were all a flutter.

 park city is such a special place for us cloves.  i hope my girls will remember these trips fondly.

mia busted her head open and russ wrecked the mdx. on vacation. in park city.

we're having a loverly time on our park city trip--until monday morning, that is. i was just about to jump in the shower to get ready to go down to slc for my much anticipated blogger dinner when i heard the girls all screaming in the other room--you know the scream, the terrified, "something is really wrong"--the scream that stops your heart cold? yeah, we run out into the living room and mia has blood dripping from the back of her head, gushing everywhere. she had fallen backwards onto our stone fireplace and had the hugest head wound--we grabbed towels to put on it and russ and i rushed down to the park city insta-care . it just wouldn't stop bleeding, and we were soaking thru towels left and right and i was nervous that they were making us wait--FINALLY we got back there and they said that she would need 3 staples. not so bad.....but it did change russ and the girl's plan to go to lagoon that day--we decided we would try it the next day and he would just drop me off to amy for the dinner and they would go to a movie.

i spared you the staples shot--i didn't want anyone vomiting on my watch. my poor little mia--she looks like she's a casualty of war! but all was well again.....

until THIS happened at about 4pm:

seriously??!!! you can't make this stuff up sometimes, but we seem to like living it......i actually slept thru the whole thing--i was dozing in the front seat when all of a sudden i felt a huge jolt and airbags popping and smoke and my girls screaming THAT scream, again. (seriously, how many times can your heart stop in one day? holy shit.) i looked over at russ and he was okay and i looked back and everyone else was fine, but scaredscaredSCARED and crying. the smoke was bad, so once we got out of the car we could see that russ had rear-ended a large flat-bed trailer.


however, the man who we rear-ended couldn't have been nicer or more helpful. amy got there and rescued us right away, got the girls in her car and started a movie, and i kind of wandered around in a bit of shock trying to decide what to do. the policewoman who arrived at the scene came and asked if i was okay, and i laughed and told her we had already spent 3 hours that morning at the insta-care with massive head-wound harry and that we didn't think the day could get any worse, but apparently i was wrong. she talked with the driver of the flatbed, and asked if it was okay if she didn't give us a citation, considering our lucky streak, and he was all for it.

i still got to go to the dinner  for bloggers and we got to rent this sweet miniature for the next 3 days---here my girls are showing their love and devotion to the 'ride'--

my blogging stalker tiburon forced me to go to a john mayer concert eye roll

we made it to our awesome 9th row seats all in one piece and settled in for a little love from johhny

tiburon was a big old attention whore and must have asked me about 30 times prior to the concert starting if i was going to get video of her.  because she's such a die-hard john mayer fan eyeroll eyeroll:

it ended up being a pretty great concert despite the fact that he was john mayer.  and i was there with annoying people.

she also insisted that we all get matching t shirts and this is when i didn't have any boundaries so i went ahead and paid $30 for this t shirt and i never wore it again after this photo:

rock of love : i shouldn't. but i do......

if you know me, then you know that one of my guilty pleasures was watching/being totally mesmerized by "rock of love 2"--yes, it was trashy reality tv. i didn't even watch "rock of love 1" because i thought it looked bad even by my admittedly low standards--but megan beguiled me to watch, saying it was pure entertainment and i did.  and it was pretty freaking awesome.

i was watching some of vh1's 'top 100 80's' songs, and almost spit out my diet dr pepper when bret michaels gave a little "behind the music moment" on the song "every rose has its thorn"--he was on tour and called his stripper-slash-hussy of a girlfriend and when she answered the phone he heard another man coughing on the other end. bret confided in us that that particular moment cut him to the core, and his heart actually broke in half. it then inspired that gem, "every rose has its thorn"--{sniff}

super emotional.

pimp cups for da pimp juice

remember when amy used to make these super glittery cute cups?

katie is like her mom and loves anything with her initial.
 chandler's favorite color is blue so this was perfect.
abbey is ALL ABOUT PINK, so this little number made her giddy.

mia is proudly displaying my cup.  and it's simply spectacular.

 no detail was spared and they were festive and bright

i went to a blogger lunch in slc and felt like a gd celebrity

hey mindi..........

remember when you met up with your blogging bff's at cafe rio when you went on vacay to park city?

you were super super nervous about it because it seemed like a shit ton of pressure.  but amy was with you and acted as security blanket as well as bff and you thoroughly enjoyed your night.

i did love meeting kami of no biggie--she was a huge positive blogging influence on me and she was cute and smart and helped me learn how to use my fancy camera that russ bought me for mother's day:
here i am with arianne who i am still friends with, tiburon eye roll, kami's bat shit crazy sister becky and kami:

i have to admit that i felt like a psuedo celebrity that night, legit.  everybody up there had already met up for lunch with each other so i was the new girl for the evening and i ate it up like the attention whore i am:

the only bummer about this evening was that vanessa was absent--i can't remember where she was but i'm sad she's not in this photo.  she is the one friend that i still remain in touch with from blogging and i love the shit outta her.

this was during the "golden months" of blogging.  before it got complicated or hard.  or like a chore.  it was something that saved my life during a period where everybody knew about me and what i had done in stg. i wanted nothing more to be able to have a "do over".....and blogging gave me that chance.  i will forever be thankful for starting this because these memories are absolutely priceless and i'm only mad that i stopped doing it when i did.  wtf.

mindi makes mia count to 20 for her drink or "what's this, mims? is it diet?"

my dad just cracks me up sometimes. he has diabetes and has lived with it and managed it beautifully for about 15 years now. he is the one who bestowed my love of the diet dr pepper on me, and it is not uncommon for me to see him sometimes as early as 7:30 am with a maverick cup full of it in the cup holder.

what kills me is that i used to drink the real, hardcore, leaded stuff. that is, until i switched 10 years ago. but what he likes to do every single time he sees me with drink in hand (which is the majority of the time) is to reach for it and ask me, "what's this, mims? is it diet?" which the answer is, "yes, dad, it is diet." and has been since 1998. you know, when i switched? oh, dad.  you are so dang adorable.

so this was his new fascination the other night when we were up in pine valley. we had brought up some kool aid jammers that were only 10 calories each ( i can't remember if they were sugar free or special diet or whatever) and he kept asking if they were really only 10 calories. REALLY??

 he approved.

pretty soon word was out that drinks were being consumed. straws were being inserted.

m & m got in on the action and, oh! were they ever happy!

how glad am i that we have this little video clip that shows how i like to make my children jump thru hoops to get a straw in their drink:

FOWL: mindi has a problem and it's name is bird decor excess.

it would be an understatement to say that we have lots of birds in our home decor currently.

it could be that they are the new "blue geese" for the this season, (remember those? my mom had some canisters with them on that contrasted nicely with our rust colored wall paper....), or the "mauve and teal green" for 2008, (ahhhhhhhhh, if you could only see my house in 1994. you would have been super envious.) but we are dinking the bird koolaid.  hardcore.

i think it also has something to do with the fact that all of the little birds i collect i can buy fairly cheap--usually at tai pan trading or interior elements or target.

someone asked me the other day how many birds i had in my house--i said not that many, and russ about had an aneurysm--he's got all sorts of irritated and decided he was going to count.

well holy shit:

then there are the ones that are birds, but might fall more into the hen/rooster category:

bock. bock.

these roosters are the ones i am actually the most sentimental about--  rbc bought them for me when we moved into our house 5 years ago when he really shouldn't have as they were over our non-existing decorating budget. but he did and it was immediate love for life....he  refers to them constantly as our ROCK HARD COCKS.  it never gets old.....

i heart jake ryan or mindi makes a big old list of her favorite 80's flicks

80's movies are a passion of mine--

i wanted to make a list of my favorites and spent entirely too many hours compiling this.  like a ridiculous amount and i spent way too long on this list.  but sometimes it's important to get things right.  so i'm sure the world will appreciate that i've put this out into the universe. 

i actually made a list of 15 essential 80's flicks--the following were honorable mentions and OMG i put a lot of time and effort and research into this.  wtf but i'm hoping i will be glad one day?

dirty dancing-patrick swayze takes baby out of the corner all the while wearing tight levis and better hair than i ever had or hoped to have

outsiders--loved loved LOVED tommy howell and since he was mormon, too, we were going to be married in the st. george temple as soon as i turned 16

can't buy me love--hope for the ronald millers everywhere that the dork CAN get the girl with the convertible cabriolet and the spiral perm (hello amy!)

girls just wanna have fun--love sara jessica parker and shannon doherty before she turned to the dark side--who is ever gonna forget "slow slow quick quick slow"?

less than zero--kinda naughty and mature theme, but robert downey jr, andrew mccarthy and jami gertz all living rich-kid, decadent lives in california? like a drug in itself.
movie message-- drugs:BAD 
platoon--charlie sheen's finest moment and the first serious, scary movie that spoke to me.  i bought a ticket to a pg movie and snuck into this with my friend tammy.  

lost boys--what's not to love about vampires and the two coreys? paving the way for future edwards and bellas but more importantly it had some killer pre-emo songs on the soundtrack.

she's having a baby--great soundtrack and kevin bacon's in laws with the mining helmets with the lights? priceless. this movie introduced russ and i to the song "this woman's work" by kate bush.  it was a touching movie scene and a tender song to both of us in our relationship.

working girl--harrison ford and melanie griffith and love that the good girl gets the highrise office in the end. i must have watched this movie 10 different times and i loved melanie griffith in it.

top gun--tom cruise +kelly mcgillis+blue light+berlin=box office gold

so with no further ado let's get right down to brass tacks:

15. when harry met sally--meg ryan was adorable in this and i wanted her wardrobe, with all those cute, high-waisted, belted jeans-- BAD. never really liked billy crystal all that much until i saw this movie, then thought he ruled

14. cocktail--total beefcake fest, shameless cheesy 80's flick, but i am here to tell you that tom cruise never looked this good on screen again, EVER.  plus that romance down in jamaica is the main reason russ and i went there on our honeymoon.  i fantasized about dancing sexy with russ in a nightclub like tom and elizabeth but it's hard to do when you are 21 year old mormons and scared of being shanked.  or being offered cocaine in downtown montego bay.  DAMMIT RUSS WHY DIDN'T WE AT LEAST SEE WHAT HE HAD TO OFFER

13. summer school--mark harmon and all of his high school misfits was a classic and i liked kirstie alley before she got all fat and jenny craigish.  also i thought mark harmon never looked better than in this movie.

12. footloose--i remember seeing this up at the old movies on the hill and coming out with such a huge crush on kevin bacon-- was there any teenager in america who didn't have that movie soundtrack? plus who doesn't wanna see kevin bacon doing gymnastics in an abandoned warehouse? shirtless?
11. dangerous liaisons--okay, L-O-V-E-D this one--any movie that can make john malkovich seem like the sexiest man alive deserves mad props and russ and i had a particular fondness for this one.  i remember renting it with him from main street video.

10. weird science--i seriously dig anthony michael hall and he killed it in this flick--bill paxton was brilliant as chet--way ahead of his time. and who doesn't wanna hear kelly lebrock say a line like, "its a party--you know, sex, drugs, rock and roll....chips, dips, chains, whips....."

9. flamingo kid--we watched this over and over the summer of 1984 when my friend chris was house-sitting for an old couple in her ward. great time-period film and i want janet jones's body when i die and go to heaven--seriously

8. better off dead-- "four weeks. 28 papers. TWO DOLLARS." i wanna keep john cusack in a box under my bed.

7. some kind of wonderful--listened to this soundtrack all summer long at the leishman's pool. loved that the friend that was the girl that got the guy--of course, that's never gonna happen in real life, but one can dream....

6. ferris bueller's day off--matthew broderick is a ROCK STAR in this film and it was john hughes at his best-- loved the name sloane and wanted to wear walking shorts and boots and look as contempo casual cool as she did. principal edward rooney was my absolute fav (when ferris is posing as sloane's dad and kisses her passionately) "so THAT's how it is in their family......"

5. say anything--okay, what girl does not remember the scene where lloyd dobler is holding up the boom box and peter gabriel's "in your eyes" is blasting's like porn for teenage girls. "i don't want to sell anything, buy anything, or process anything as a career. i don't want to sell anything bought or processed, or buy anything sold or processed, or process anything sold, bought, or processed, or repair anything sold, bought, or processed. you know, as a career, i don't want to do that." "kickboxing: the sport of the future."

4. valley girl--oh, be still my heart. "man, he's just like tripendicular, ya know?!" my friends rachel and sara and i must have watched this about 50 times--which is alot when you rent it from rent-a-video at $1.99 a pop--its like romeo and juliet with "like, gag me with a spoon" thrown in, plus it has nicolas cage before he got all weird and freaky and this movie itroduced me to modern english's i melt with you.  sigh.

3. sixteen candles-- "dong......dong? where is my automobile?" there is not enough room on this already way-too long entry to do this film justice. jake ryan is totally dreamy and molly ringwald was the girl we all wanted to be--plus that scene at the end with the birthday cake and them sitting on the table and the thompson twins "if you were here" playing in the background? again, i give you porn for teenage girls.

2. pretty in pink--kick ass soundtrack, molly ringwald, andrew mcarthy, and a dude named duckie. "blaine? BLAINE? that's not a name, its a major appliance!" james spader was all that as the bad dude--he had playing total d-bags down to a fine artform, didn't he? which made me dig him even more. plus john cryer singing and dancing to "try a little tenderness" was an iconic scene.

1. was it even a question? breakfast club--this movie was monumental for me in many ways--first "r" rated film i ever saw (sorry lana) and this movie for me is the one that i could still watch repeatedly and never get sick of the dialogue. "does barry manilow know you raid his wardrobe?" out of all the characters i loved bender best--could judd nelson be any cooler? and that part where they crank up the stereo and dance is timeless--many a time have i had to pull out my "molly ringwald dance" to show my sweet moves. there has never, ever been a better movie made about teen angst. period. the end.