Friday, May 31, 2013

I'm Special! The Liebster Award!

I was nominated for the Liebster Award by Tayler from Our Fairy Tale. You may remember her better as Tanney, the friend I posted about and her dastardly day with devilish students. She also did a guest post in which I give a great yellow cake recipe. She's definitely not new around here, and I happen to like her a lot. And she nominated me!


How cool is that? Almost as cool as that suave and awesome cat up there? I feel pretty honored. It means "dear" in German apparently. This basically translates into the fact that someone likes my blog. Huzzah! To accept the nomination, I have to take certain steps. I answer questions my nominator posed, I give 11 random facts about myself, and then I ask 11 questions of the bloggers that I nominate. I'm supposed to nominate 5-11 new people. The rule is that the people nominated have to have less than 200 followers- I'm well below that mark, so I'm surprised I even got this. But hey. I'll take it! So to the questions!

Questions from Tanney/Tayler/Whatever People Call Her:

1) What made you start blogging?
It was to keep in touch with our families after we were married. I suppose I could have written an email and then spammed it to everyone in the family, but we have a lot of extended family, and that would have been bothersome. Besides, once I developed Pictorials, it became a source of venting and great fun.

2) What is your blogging dream?
TO CONQUER THE WORLD! Or just to give people a good laugh when they need it, or a spiritual and emotional boost when it's something they need, or to share my love of food and Andrew with other people who love food. But they can't love Andrew. Well, they can, but they can't have him. He's mine.

3) What is your dream job, and do you have it/are you working toward it?
My dream job is a wife, mother, and homemaker. What more noble cause is there than to take a structure of walls and floors and ceilings, and to make that elaborate box into a home? A home is a place of love, refuge, comfort, peace, laughter, and goodwill. What more noble cause is there than to bring precious spirits down to Earth and to raise them in truth, light, and love? I love Andrew, and I love being his wife. We'll get to the children part when it's right.

4) What are you a junkie of?
Reading. And reading. Sometimes I read. And reading. Have I mentioned reading? Oh, and my brownies. I make good brownies. And 60's music. And Jane Austen. And Andrew.

5) Since I'm a teacher, what was your favorite subject in school? Why?
English and History because you can come to better understand the world and its people by understanding the stories and legacies they have recorded in their books and cultures.

6) What is your favorite book? Why?
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. I first fell in love with it when I was nine, and I never really changed my mind. Elizabeth is a snobbish judgmental person, and Darcy is an introverted snot head. I love that they change for each other, even admitting their character flaws in the process. True love makes you better. (And I can't help but mention Les Miserables by Hugo, Ben Hur by Wallace, and The Alliance by Lund. They're great books, too!)

7) Name a country you want to visit from every continent.
Canada, Brazil, Italy, Russia, Somewhere-With-Penguins, and Australia (SIDNEY! AHHHHH! Finding Nemo, anyone?)

8) What are all the languages you speak (real or fake, fluent or not)
English, Franglish, some French, and I'm learning Brazilian (more commonly known as Portuguese).

9) What is the most annoying thing people do?
I dislike it greatly when people butcher up adverbs. I did WELL at doing GOOD today.

10) What are three interesting things in your house?
a. This large and beruffled pillow by my side. It's pink, and looks like a flower attacked it. I like it.
b. A dog statue made out of a slinky-spring thing and some metal scraps and spray painted blue. Daddy got it for me for a high school graduation gift. His name is Fred, and it's the only pet I'll ever want.
c. Two quias. Those are cup/mug things from Brazil. They look pretty snazzy.

11) What is your favorite post that you've done in the past year?
That would depend on my mood. If I want a laugh, my Pictorials make me chuckle. Megan and Tashya- Sisters in Embarrassment may be my favorite in the past year. But if I want to feel clever, I read installments from The Story. Seriously. Go read Man Voice and the Water Heater and tell me that it's not hilarious and I'm not a writing genius. If we're talking about meaningful, then either Get Your Head Out of the Tomb or How to Be Happy With Your Miserable Life.

11 Random Facts:
  1. When I'm baking, I generally don't eat much of the finished product because I eat so much of the batter or dough along the way. 
  2. I like to paint my fingernails every week, and update my toes at least once every three weeks.
  3. I own three pink dresses. One is bright pink and has a huge bow on the front.
  4. I yell out "-LY" when someone forgets to do it themselves. Use your adverbs, people!
  5. I talk to myself when I'm writing to the point where I'll even have grand gesticulations going on. I don't write while in public.
  6. When I'm reading, I often make faces that reflect the feelings of the characters in the book. If they're confused, I look confused, if they quirk a brow, then so do I.
  7. I'm very proud of my eyes. I think that I have rather nice eyes, probably my best feature. In fact, I'm proud of my family's eyes. We all have great eyes.
  8. I love to sing. I love pretty songs. I love to listen to beautiful music. I burst out into song frequently.
  9. I don't like country or rap at all. I'll admit to a Taylor Swift song or two, but that's just about it.
  10. I love my daddy's voice. He sometimes wishes he could sing bass, but I wouldn't trade his voice for anything. Some of my fondest memories growing up involve the family singing around the piano together, and sometimes just listening to Daddy sing.
  11. Cigarette smoke makes me very ill. Very ill. And I'm very sensitive to it- I can smell it from across the parking lot when the wind is blowing the other way. Just ask Andrew.
Were those good random facts? I just wrote down some stuff. I tried not to repeat too much of what was already in the About Us tab up there. But now we're on to the last section!

My nominees!:
1. Suzzie from Suzzie Vehrs
2. Michele, Matt, and Offspring from Matt and Michele's Mundo
4. Danica from Our Fletcher Family
5. Tayler from Our Fairy Tale

11 Questions for the My Nominees:
1. What is your favorite color?
2. What is your favorite time of the year?
3. Do you have a Disney princess with whom you identify? Why?
4. What is your favorite genre of reading material?
5. What is your favorite thing to make (be it food, craft, drink, music, or whatnot)?
6. What do you think is your best feature?
7. What luxury item do you most want?
8. Why do you enjoy blogging?
9. Who is your hero, past or present?
10. What is your favorite thing to wear and why?
11. If you could be in any book, which would it be?

And so that's my participation in the Liebster Award nominations. As far as people that I've nominated, I really must confess to something. I don't really stalk all that many people on blogs. To be honest, I look at mine a lot. I realize that's really snobby sounding, but I like my style, and I like remembering what I did. I'm generally pretty picky about writing style, but sometimes I let that take a break if I think that there is good character behind the flaws, or if I like the person that's writing. So there's my nomination stuff. You'll notice that I didn't nominate myself. I am, however, about to go and draw some pictures.

Have a glorious day!

PS. Tanney, I had to nominate you. Your kinda sorta maybe all sorts of my blogger buddy. And you're better at blogging than I am. I had to return the favor. I love you!

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Hello Again!

It has been quite some time since I last posted. I apologize to all. I especially apologize to my family members who depend upon this blog to know that I am indeed alive, and what is happening in the life of Those Weird Heims down there in Texas. I also especially apologize to the dear, lovely people who have expressed their admiration for our blog, only to be summarily ignored. I do promise, though, that you were never summarily dismissed completely from my mind. In fact, I am even now at this moment sending you a mental package of love and a small box of cookies!

To Bugheera's roommates: Welcome. I hope that all of you ladies are having a wonderful time together. Bugheera likes the pictures on this blog, so we can see if you like them too. In time, I may learn your names and write stories about you if Bug tells me about any that are particularly spectacular.

At this time, I would like to give an update on how things have been going. About a year ago, I wrote a similar post with a paragraph about important things here and there. It was when we were moving down here to Texas, and it involved plenty of chaos. It does not, however, include the Horrorific and Panic-Inducing Tale of the Plague of Crickets. Let me tell you, no bueno! No me gusta! Except, one of the pictures is rather funny. Other than that, there was nothing good in that situation.

And so, here is the Recent Update List.

Numero Uno:

As you know, my older sister Megan was married on May 3rd. What you might not have known is that I flew out to Tennessee to be with my family for two weeks before the wedding. And then I drove to Utah with them. Yup. I flew so I could drive. Makes sense, doesn't it? But it was great fun. It was a bunch of us Chelsons having a grand old time together. I got to sleep in a big bed with more than half of my sisters for several nights. Did you know that some of them are funny when they sleep? It's true. I won't embarrass them here, but they should probably know that I'm laughing at them.

Nombre Deux:

When Andrew and I flew home from the wedding (no, I didn't drive to Tennessee to fly back to Texas), we had an extra person with us. Teannka is my youngest sister. She has been with us this past month. We've been doing a bit of a Princess Academy. We work on reading and confidence and the suchlike.

We have gone to the library, the pool, the park, and have made all sorts of different recipes. We have also played a lot of Super Smash Bros. because that is an awesome game, and Teannka realizes that too. She has also learned about Portal and Netflix. And we sing songs.

Teannka and I had a tea party using my fine china set. I don't have a tea pot, but I do have tea cups and saucers. We used orange peach mango juice, which is one of my favorites. We had fancy little sandwiches, Greek yogurt, and awesomely tasty sundried tomato and basil crackers. We were going to make crumpets to be super official and English, but we looked at the recipe. Turns out that I'll need to expend some effort for that recipe. So, I'll be doing that later.

Tres (Foreign Language for Three):

My health has been somewhat improving. After deciding that I didn't want to take even MORE prescriptions that may or may not be helpful, Andrew and I found a chiropractor that we could go to. We found out that my neck is not how it should be. The spine is actually starting to bend the wrong way. So I'm going in about three times a week to try to fix things. I've already noticed some improvements, so that's good.

Number Four:

I'm an original blogger for a new website. If you'd like to see some of my posts there, then look at the following links. I wrote one about menus in How to Avoid Stress and Save Happiness in the Kitchen. I think that menus are very important. I was going to write about it on here, but I wrote about it over there. I might redo it for this blog as well. We'll see. I put up two of the recipes that have already been on here (for my recipes, check the Edibles tab up there). And I also wrote one on something that really helps me out: A Spot o' Tea and a Splash o' Smile. So yes. Although I don't even read all of the other articles put up there by some of the other girls (because I'm not really interested in some of those topics- honestly, I don't really need to be as skinny as a model, I'm happy with being fit), it's still fine to share goodness and send my fun words out into the world.  I hope some of them can help someone smile and brighten someone's day (or in the case of this last article, warm someone's evening). (Andrew totally ended that sentence for me, and I'm going to leave it like that.)

And really, I suppose that's the Update List for today. I don't really have all that many wonderful things to tell you in list form. I have some great tales that will be told in Pictorial form in the coming days. So look ahead! Now that I'm back, I intend to stay here. Well, not all the time. Just long enough to post, and then I'll go back to the real world.

PS. Suzzie, did you know that I love your comments? True story.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Two Days Late Still Counts For Something

I don't know if any of you folks realized this, but Mother's Day happened to be this Sunday. Two days ago. I didn't say anything at the time, but I thought that I'd let you in on the fact that I do have a mother. A very good one. I might even venture to say the best one in the entire world. And so, even though I have lots of things to say about the trip I just took, the wedding, and some really interesting Pictorials to share, I'm going to write a few words about my mother.

What this picture lacks in artistic skillz it makes up for in veracity of relationship portrayal. I love Mama. By the way, see that lovely sweater she's wearing? I bought her that. Happy Mother's Day, Mama! Mother is the one who taught me how to find the best deals when out shopping. She's the one who taught me how to plan a menu. She's the one who taught me how to love, serve, and listen. She's the one who taught me to play piano. She's the one who is always there to listen. She's the one who can always say "Everything is going to be okay!" and actually mean it.

She's the one who taught me to feel beautiful and look beautiful. She's the one who taught me to love being a woman. She's the one who taught me to be appreciative of the finer things in life. Like good stores. Like the best store.

Ya, Mama and I have shared many happy moments together within the walls of Kohl's stores across the country. Lots of good times there. You have got to love Kohl's Cards- you get all sorts of coupons! It was a mark of my womanhood when I was approved for my Kohl's Card. Andrew knows that whenever Mama and I get together, a trip to Kohl's must be on the agenda.

I'm also very glad for the things that my mother is not. Although she is still very beautiful and could pass as my sister, she is nothing at all like Mother Gothel from Rapunzel. She doesn't try to scare me into hiding, or into any kind of submission.

This is my favorite moment of Mother Gothel in Tangled. While my mother is hilarious, she is not devious.
And you know what? In addition to a magnificently wonderful mother, I also have two glorious grandmothers. Mama's mama is pretty darn awesome. She can decorate cakes, and in fact did the wedding cakes for both mine and Megan's weddings. She can also supply you with good things like slippery elm, which is good for what ails ye! When I think of Grandma Taylor, I think of the comforting smell of warm bread dough rising, delicious peach cream toppings for french toast, and the funnest game ever, Don't Eat Pete! Here is Grandma Taylor and Mama at Megan's wedding:

Grandma Chelson is Daddy's mama. She is very good at worrying about things. It's part of her adorable grandmotherliness. And she really is adorable. Grandma is amazing when it comes to genealogy. She has actually published a book about our family history. Isn't that amazing? She also does Baptism Books. When a grandchild (and she has a lot) turns eight and is baptized, she makes a scrapbook for them about their families and who they are. I've had mine for years, and I still love looking at mine! Here is Grandma Chelson looking adorable with Megan and Ray at the wedding:

I have so many wonderful blessings in my life because of these three women- and no, that doesn't include Mother Gothel. They have taught me about the true gospel of Jesus Christ, they have taught me about being a woman and a wife, they have taught me about the joy of serving and lifting others. I love Mama, and I love Grandma Taylor, and I love Grandma Chelson. They are wonderful women. Happy Mother's Day Two Days Later!

Friday, May 10, 2013

The Speech the Maid of Honor Didn't Get to Give

Hello, dear family and friends! How are you doing? Was your month as wonderfully chaotic and full and wonderful as my own? I'm guessing that, seeing as most of you are related to me, you will be answering "YES, Tash, it most definitely WAS!" And do you know what I say to that? FANTASTIC!

For those of you who don't know, I shall enlighten you. BEHOLD!

Do you remember Megan of Shower Ninja and Musical fiasco fame? Well, that's her, freshly married to her best friend Ray! Huzzah for Meggum and Raymond! The loveliest couple of them all! They were married May 3, 2013 in the Oquirrh Mountain Utah temple. Megan is absolutely radiant! Raymond is so handsome! Wanna see a better personality shot? Of course you do!

Perfect. Ray is smug, and Megan exultant. Congratulations to the both of you!

Raymond, I want to say something to you. I didn't get to give a speech at the wedding, so I'll say what I wanted to say here:

You should know that Megan's name means "priceless treasure, or pearl." She really is a pearl of great price! She is beautiful, isn't she? She has lovely golden curls, fantastic blue eyes that constantly sparkle with merriment, rosy cheeks that blossom like the flowers she loves so much. But Megan's beauty is so many other things, too. It's the way that her laughter simmers just under the surface, ready to burst out of her mouth like bubbles and chimes. It's the way that she can't walk without giving off an air of joie de vie. It's the way that she revels in the glory and beauty with God's creations. It's the way that her love and devotion are clear and visible to anyone who looks. Isn't she so beautiful?

Megan's love is constant, but her expressions of love burst forth in rays and pops of loving sunshine and fireworks. Having to constantly express that affection makes the storage puddle more depleted, and it's harder for her to store up for her pops of natural, un-forced affectionate actions. You won't be starved for love or attention, however, because it doesn't take that long between the bursts for Megan's loving, joyful, and passionate heart to fill up again.

You now have my sister for your wife. You are a very lucky man. Megan brings with her the love of her family, the loyalty of the people whose lives she has touched with laughter, and the pride of those who have seen her grow and develop. Megan is priceless. Megan is a treasure. When I think of you, the words "steadfast," and "devotion" come to mind. Together, you and Megan's life together will be filled with music, laughter, strength, companionship, growth, and wonder. I love you both. To the happy couple!

*End Speech!*

"A kiss is a lovely trick designed by nature to stop speech when words become superfluous." 
-Ingrid Bergman

"Gravitation is not responsible for people falling in love." 
-Albert Einstein

"At the touch of love everyone becomes a poet." -Plato

Megan, my only older sibling, is a wonderful human, and my best friend. She and I aren't extremely similar in some things. She's the blonde to my brunette, the Marianne to my Elinor, the Ariel to my... strange combination of Flounder, Sebastian, and a more musically talented Scuttle. But we're also so very alike. Ask us about Anne of Green Gables sometime. Or music. Megan is generally more outspoken about her passions than I am, but we share many interests.

I feel like I should receive some sort of credit for their marriage. Years ago, when I was going to school at BYU-I still, I lived in the same house as Megan. We were roomies three out of the four semesters we were there together. It was near Christmas time, and I saw that there was going to be a singalong for Handel's wonderful Messiah. I LOVE singing, and what soprano doesn't get a kick out of those beautiful melismas? Seriously. I had spoken to this guy named Ray a few times during the semester, and knew that he had one fantastic voice. I decided to ask if he'd like to come along with me.

And BOY, am I glad that he did! Not only did we have a fabulous time trying to get to the singalong (try walking on ice in vicious heels without murdering the kindly gentleman by either spearing him with said deadly heels or bashing his head against the hard sidewalk- it's hard), we also had a great time singing (and Ray shouted AMEN in the ONE silent moment of the entire evening, and I spent the rest of the night trying not to laugh too obnoxiously- and you know how much funnier everything is when you're trying not to laugh!). But the evening came to an end, and Ray walked me home. Where he met my sister. He joined us in singing some Christmas carols. Megan's voice seems to have done the trick in getting Ray to notice her.

Next thing I know, the two are officially dating. A half a year later, I'd transferred to BYU in Provo, and the two are madly in love. And then, next thing I knew, Megan was putting in her papers to serve as a missionary. Ray was very supportive of her doing what she felt the Lord wanted her to do. So Megan left to serve the Lord in Santiago, Chile. Right before she left, she commanded me to not marry until her return so she can be at my wedding. Next thing I knew, I was engaged and getting married. Whoops. Sorry, Meggum!

But then Megan came home, and had no idea what to do with the English language or the opposite gender. Raymond was patient, the good man that he is, and by the time that Megan was getting better at recognizing the difference between Spanish and English, the two were getting it together! Next thing I knew, I was planning a wedding.

So, after a good few years, lots of waiting, being in different schools, different states, and even on different continents, Megan and Ray have found their way to the altar at least. They have been married for one week today! I love you, Megan and Ray!

NOTE: I didn't post anything in the past while because of my many adventures in preparing for the wedding. Those posts will be upcoming. This one was just about Megan and her beloved.