Feb 28, 2010

Jack's Coffee Sleeve

Jack doesn't actually drink coffee. Like me, he despises it entirely and prefers a nice tea. Still, he loves a trip to Starbucks and he has a special place in his heart for the environment. To combine his love of Starbucks and eco-friendly items, I made him his own re-usable coffee sleeve.

I just found a template online, cut out two in black felt and one in grey felt, and then cut out letters from the top layer so that the grey middle layer showed through to spell out his name (I tried to up the cool factor with a fancy A) and then hand-stitched around the edges.

I added velcro dots as the fastener. I think I am going to sew on velcro, but for now these were just the sticky sort.

Now he can save the environment, one coffee sleeve at a time- and we won't get our drinks mixed up!

It's All Brand New - Fall 1986

Dear Diary,

Hi! My mom got me gym shoes that are OK. I started Altimira today! I have:

1- Social Science, teacher: Mr. R, an okay teacher
2- Math 1, Teacher: Mr. R, My favorite, a radical teacher
3- Reading 1, teacher: Mr. H, so/so teacher
4- English 1, teacher - Mr H, you know about him!
5- Student Leadership, teacher- Mrs D or ? Both OK don't know em that great, though
6- Science, teacher- Mr. S- another ok teacher I don't know that great yet
7- gym, teachers- ?? Don't know them hardly yet!

I love Altimira!

Saw Mike today, want to kiss him but I'm embarrassed. I did last year.* I might tomorrow. I have science with Gina and gym with Gina and Mary. PE showers are yucky! They're round. I can't wait for tomorrow. The Altimira first 86-87 dance is soon. Should I go?

Well, gotta go, I 'll try and write tomorrow, though.


*For some reason I never wrote about it in my diary, but I did indeed kiss him. It was after school, I think it was the very last day of elementary school. We were at the bike racks, saying goodbye, and I remember it was hot and sunny and there were other kids around, retrieving their bicycles to head home. I didn't ride a bike to school, but I think he did and that's why I was there, seeing him off before I walked home, perhaps. It was about as quick and passionate as kissing your mom goodnight, but it was a kiss nonetheless and to me at the time it was epic romance. It was my very first kiss.

Sept 5, 1986,

Dear Diary,

Hi! I called my loveable, sweet, sexy, selfish pig boyfriend from Gina's house this evening and talked for a long time. Everyone was coming and going, and at one point I was the only one even at Gina's house besides her grandparents. He's super sweet! I love him so much! You wouldn't believe what happened! Jen calls me and says "Jenny, would you mind if when you break up with Mike I go with him?"

I'm all, "I'm not gonna break up with him!"

She says, "Jenny, you will sometime"

I said, "no!"

She said, "Okay, when he breaks up, then?"

I said, "Jennifer!"

She said, "Would you care?"

I said, "yes!"

She said, "Why?*"

I said "Because I love him!"

and on and on and on....

Gina, Brook, John, and Steve and Me were all at Gina's house.

Happy birthday, Dweezil Zappa! September 5!**

* I should have said "back off my man, b&tch!"

** I had a total crush on Dweezil Zappa. I just looked him up and I think I still do.


I can't wait until Monday. I'm going to kiss Mike whether he likes it or not! Every time I see John he either makes siren noises or says something like, "Call the pound!". Most aggravating. Mike missed the afternoon bus today. I saved him a seat and everything. I just finished my math S.O.S test today (friday) and Monday I start with Written Expression in Mr H's class.

You should hear what I sound like on a tape recorder. Totally different!

Gotta go soon, you'll see about one or two more entries then I need a new diary!

I heart The Monkees forever.*

I think I like the song coming on. Oh! Never mind! Just an advertisement. A tampon commercial! Now it's a Nissan ad- boring!

Gotta go now, count on 1 more entry.

Love n stuff,

*This seems really random, but The Monkees had a reunion tour in 1986 which was huge, and they were super popular for a while then. It was a strange time to be alive.

Dear Diary,

Hi! Guess who?

Just saw a movie called The Drug Knot. I was in my bed and thinking about it and I started to cry. Then I realized I wasn't crying because of the movie, I was crying for no reason. I don't know why! I'm worried about a bunch of little things?

Do you think I should buy Mike a Gotcha shirt for Christmas? I don't really need to worry about that now. It's only September 10 and Christmas is December 25. I'm scared Mike might want to break up. I'll right more tomorrow*.


*Pretty sure I meant write more. I must have really been distracted by the Gotcha Shirt conundrum and the possible breakup.

Dear Diary,

Just got home from my first Altimira dance. It was cool. There's this guy named Steve C. and I want to go with him and Gina called him and he said probably but he wants to know me first. So cool. Oh, I forgot- Mike and I broke up but we are hopefully still pals.

I think I'll write a bunch of stuff about myself on a sheet of paper and give it to Steve C so he can know me sooner.* I cannot believe I actually danced at the dance!** By by for now or as Tigger would say TTFN- ta ta for now!***


*how romantic
**I think this must have been the Christmas dance. These entries are squeezed into the last few pages of this diary, and are undated, but the next diary starts up on December 28th. Here I am with my mom (who chaperoned) at that dance. I love how I am sporting a bubble dress and pearls with my hair pulled back on just the one side. I think I had my first slow dance this same night. I remember very clearly that it was to "Crazy for You" by Madonna and that it was a super long song that went on forever.

Dear Diary,

I really do hate my dad. He's a mother f*cking tiddy sucking two ball b*tch*. Doesn't make sense, does it?

Steve Copper still doesn't know if he will go with me. Gina, Paul, and William were all at Gina's house and we called him. He says he still doesn't know me good enough. I'll get him to go with me if I die trying.**

When I checked in at 2 pm my dad got mad at me for no reason, and he wouldn't let me leave again. About that time Paul and William pull in my driveway.*** That really makes my dad mad! I think I'll call them.


*I think this was a popular expression and I was looking for an excuse to work it in.
**Spoiler alert - Steve C and I never do "go together" and I miraculously live through it.
***This makes it sound like they drove up. They "pulled in" on their bicycles. You will note that when I talk about hanging out with boys it is always at school or Gina's. Boys were NOT allowed at my house, and I was NOT allowed to "go with" boys or kiss boys and this was all done on the down-low.

Dear Diary,

Hi, How are you? I'm pitiful. My dad came home early today from hunting because his friend accidentally shot himself in the foot. I asked my dad if I could go downtown with Ginny, and he said yes. So Ginny asked me to hold on while she asked her mom (we were on the phone). Anyways, my dad comes into my room and tells me to get off the phone and I try to explain she isn't there to say I have to go, and he comes into my room, grabs my phone, unplugs it, and throws it across the room and makes a dent in the wall. I start to yell and he was yelling and these neighbor people come over to the door saying they heard a woman yelling, and they're calling the police, etc. My dad tried to explain to them, so they leave, my dad comes in and tells me that I've had it, that these people are probably still going to call the police, etc. I wish he'd never come home from camping I want to stay in my room all day I hate him! I am going to leave my phone where it is so my mom can see everything.

That is how this diary ends. I will start in on a new one tomorrow.

Here's to first kisses, first dances, and innocence.

Feb 27, 2010

I Dream in Scottish Brogue

I'm really into the book I'm reading.

The book is part of the Outlander series, in which a woman visiting some stone circles accidentally goes through a time portal and ends up in the Scottish Highlands in the 1700s.

I started off interested, then became somewhat involved, and now it is bordering on obsession.

I am over 400 pages in after just a few days. That's a lot for me, when you consider I am squeezing it in between all the other crap I have to do.

Last night I was so moved that I could barely see the pages as tears streamed down my face. I finally had to tear myself away for a minute to go find some tissues when snot was about to run into my mouth.

In the meantime, the accents and manners of the ancient highlands are working their way into my brain. I have started to think of my children as "the bairns" and I awoke this morning in the midst of a dream in which I was listing eBay auctions that way- "Here ye have a wee top for a young bairn, Ye canna tell it to have ever been worn..."

So you can imagine what I've been doing all day today, while the rain beats on the window, in between quick updates on the news with Chile and Hawaii and switching loads of laundry.

I think I have even convinced my husband to give it a try one of these days. I love the combination of a fabulous story set amidst historical truth. I have always been fascinated with historical research and ancestry, so Richard suggested that maybe I should work on my own book and tell the fictionalized story of my own ancestors (the puritan settler and founder Robert Seeley is my many-greats grandfather). Maybe someday I will, but today I will sit with my nose in a book and my head in bonnie Scotland.

Feb 26, 2010

Ups and Downs- Summer 1986

This is me circa 1986, pegged pants and all.

Let's finish up elementary school, shall we?

Dear Diary,

Hi! Sorry I haven't written in so long. I've broken up with John twice. Sometimes I think about him. Stuff like does he know I've had my period?* Also, I wonder if I will ever marry him when I grow up? I even planned our wedding. Mostly, I worry does he love me or is he just using me?**

Your pal,

*how totally bizarre. I feel awkward.
**Using me? For what? Half my morning Safeway donut? We never even kissed, for God's sake!

Friday, the 6th of June, 1986*

Dear Diary,

I broke up with John. I wish he would stick his head down the toilet and flush it. Unfortunately, his swelled head wouldn't fit. Anyways, now I am going with Mike B. He's really super sweet and nice, and he doesn't ignore me. Gina, who is my best friend, is going with Mike's best friend Jacob.**

Your pal,

I love Mike B.

*Just had to point out that I would be getting married exactly 12 years from this entry.

**Mike was a good egg. So was Jacob. That's them in the pic- Mike is the one hiding his face.

They're my facebook friends now...


Dear Diary,

Jacob broke up with Gina. I am so majorly pissed. I hate summer. It's B-O-R-I-N-G! My dad is an as*hole. Next year I start Altimira!* Then I get to see Mike.

I love El De Barge.**

I don't get to have friends spend the night and I can't spend the night at anyone's house until my birthday- six months!


*Altimira is the name of the junior high in Sonoma

**the shame of this is eating me alive. I could barely type the words, but you know I had to look this gem up for you. This was my favorite, and after reviewing it I'm thinking, who wouldn't love El De Barge?

***Love-n-stuff? I think I may have preferred gotta jam.

Dear Diary,

My dad is so aggravating sometimes. Most of the time I hate him.

We're moving to arroyo way.


Dear Diary,

We moved. Mike broke up with me. I start Altimira in a while (about a month). My sisters went school shopping yesterday. I had Melanie over, so I didn't get to go. I probably won't get to go for like ten billion years.

I want some black cropped jeans with zippers down by the ankles*, and a big pink sweater, and some high top tennies. I want Converse All Stars but they don't sell them at Payless so I don't get them.**

At Altimira we have to wear these really sucky clothes for gym. green shorts and green t-shirts.


Fish are the number one animal sold today.***


*This embarrasses me, although really now I see kids wearing jeans like this again, but maybe without the zippers. I think they call them "skinny jeans".

**I was a spoiled brat. Still am. I am thinking we just moved and they had three kids to buy for and I was pouting because I couldn't get converse. This may explain why I have about three pair now, though.

***I am like the Rain Man of the diary. I have no idea why I have included the top pets sold in the country, but I did have a thing about facts and standards- my mom likes to tell how I spent an entire vacation quoting facts out of a book about the FDA standards for how much rat droppings and insect parts are allowed in your food.

Dear Diary,

I really can't stand my dad. He hates me, and I hate him back. He says "Hey, Jen!" I say "whaatt?"* He sends me to my room.


*I have totally sent Jack to his room or cut his computer time for saying whaatt. It's all about the tone, and I am betting I had a nasty one.


Dear Diary,

Hi! Just thought I'd write I got my new school clothes! Big Blue sweater, blue cropped jeans with zippers, high top tennis shoes. I got one more pair of tennis shoes. I got four pair of socks, also.

Dear Diary,

Hi! How are you? Fine here. Had a major fun weekend. My dad went deer hunting Friday morning. That day I went to the San Francisco Zoo, The Cliff House Restaurant, and lots of gift shops with Gina and her grandparents. Me and Gina got matching shirts. The next day, Gina came over and spent the night. When we woke up the next day, around noon, we went to Gina's house and called her new boyfriend, Robby. He turned out to be a super sweet and gorgeous guy. He came over and we went to the park. Steve came, then after a while he left. Me and Gina and Robby went to The Creamery* then we went to Gina's house and called Mike and I am going with him again! Then my mom drove by and I asked her if I could go to Brook's house. She said yes. Robby left, Gina changed, I changed, and we rode our bikes over to Brook's. Robby and John went somewhere. We went out looking for them and found them at Robby's house. We went to Brook's house. John and Robby left. They came back after a while so John could get his stuff. Then me and Gina had to go. I might spend the night at Brook's house tomorrow.


* The Creamery was an ice cream shop in Sonoma- my mom worked there when she was in high school.


Dear Diary,

Hi! How's life? I'm spending the night at Brook's.


Gina's House

Dear Diary?

Hello! How is your life today? Mine is just peachy keen, jelly bean! I want to see Mike. Gina told him I long for him. Can't wait for Altimira to start. Gina's going to let me see his picture. Yes!


I love Mike B.
I love Mike B.
I love Mike B.
I love Mike B.
I love Mike B.

1 ever + 3 ever = 4 ever*

* That doesn't even make sense.


Dear Diary,

Why does my dad ruin everything? I'll explain later.


Dear Diary,

As far as I'm concerned I'm not a part of this f*cking family! I hate my parents. I always will. There f*cking idiots!* They have sh*t for brains! Forget this! My dad thinks he's gonna pick out my gym shoes! What an a*s wipe! My mom acts like a pig sometimes. Parents are nerds. Today's not my day.


*I love how I use the wrong "there" when calling them idiots. Should have been they're. It looks like the idiot didn't fall far from the tree.

Also, this entry was followed by a bunch of violent marks where I apparently stabbed the diary repeatedly with my pen.

Next stop, junior high.


Currently I am feeling quite inspired by steampunk. Loosely defined, steampunk refers to a sort of combination of vintage science fiction mixed with Victorian design. It's a broad topic, inspired by literature and including literature, but also including fashion, home decor, music, and art - pretty much all things creative. I just love it, I find it oh-so breathtaking and inspiring so I thought I'd share...

This post on Tor.Com defines Steampunk nicely, with lots of images.

There is a steampunk fashion pool on flickr to browse through.

I especially love steampunk home decor, and I could browse The Steampunk Home for hours. Love, love, love it.

Look, there's even going to be a Steampunk World's Fair this year. Oh, would that I could!

I did hear a rumor that Knott's Berry Farm is going to have a "Victorian Steampunk Vampire" theme this year, and if so I am sooooo there.

Feb 25, 2010

Gritty in Pink- Spring 1986

April 6, 86

Dear Diary,

God! I can't stand my dad! he thinks he's just so great. School starts tomorrow. Easter vacation is finally over! Can't wait to see Steve!!!

See ya,

April 6, 86

My parents just had a fight. My dad said he might get a divorce. Sometimes I wish he would. I 'm so scared. I know it's my fault.


Dear diary.

I might have to go to Justin. Yuck! It's a christian high school.



Dear Diary,

How's life? Fine here! I'm going with John F (again). Nothing much is happening. Pretty in Pink is playing on the radio. Brook is spending the night tonight. She's coming over at 6:30 or so. It's 5:00 now. My sisters and my dad are going fishing tomorrow with a guy my dad knows named Pat T.

See ya!


Dear Diary,

Tonight is open house. I hope John is there. He's sweet sometimes. He sat next to me on the bust today. He said he wouldn't kiss me because it was too soon. Does this mean in his life or our relationship? Megan and Steve probably have. Gina has. Everyone I know has. It's embarrassing.*


John was at open house. I love John.

(I) love, (John)

This will eventually also be the reason I lose my virginity.

John broke up. I'm back to my normal self. Worshipping the ground Steve walks on!


Dear Diary,

John didn't break up. Brook lied to me I guess. I'm glad. Never mind that (about Steve).

I gotta go, just wanted to tell you the good news.


Speaking of Pretty in Pink, I remember seeing that movie and thinking I sooooo would have picked Duckie. I think it was right about this time I started to pay more attention to those quiet, different, alternative boys....

This scene was what did it for me, I still can't watch this without swooning. It is surreal now to watch Two and A Half Men and see my heart-throb in a whole different light!

Feb 24, 2010

You With the Sad Eyes - March-ish 1986

March 3, 86

There are at least 3 pages saying I hate my dad. I dont. I just get mad and over excited. I went to gramma and granpa's show last night. I know I always write how I'm going to change. Well, I haven't done anything about it. Right? Well, I swear to god I love Steve for all eternity, But! He's not really head over heels in love with me. He calls me zit! Well, Everyone needs a reason to change. Steve's my reason. When I'm as changed as I think is good enough* I'll ask Steve to go with me. If he says no? I'll get someone else to go with me. If no-one else will, I'll gain weight and blob myself** I have to save money. Hard! (I usually spend all my lunch money at Safeway)*** I'll save allowance! (That's for clothes). I'm going to do gymnastics (that's for guess what?)

Gotta go,
your friend,

*I came across this entry just in time- I wrote my English paper on confidence this week and used this entry as my example
**looks like I eventually went with this option
***I totally bought donuts and cookies at Safeway on my way to school. Sorry, mom! I seem to not make the connection between the Safeway trips and the need for some gymnastics. I'm still just cycling through this same pattern...

Dear Diary,

I so much don't like my dad. He's an a*shole. I love a few boys. I would go with Steve, if I could go with anyone I wanted. Boys I would go with are Steve, Adam, Chris, Chris, Bobby, Brian, Natt, Matt, Justin, and some other ones. I would never go with William, Peter, Jeremy, and others. Brian is a zero in my book. Steve is a 10, his bod's* o.k. He's a perfect 10, and always will be. I just saw the series "Anne of Green Gables". Good show.** I'm entering my "clutzy dumbass stage. I ruined the wallpaper with food coloring, dropped an egg, used the wrong kind of sugar.***I'm not bad in sports.****

your pal,
The future Mrs B.

*Bod? Really? What bad 80s movie did I get that from?
**My opinion of this is unwavering. Ann of Green Gables is indeed excellent.
***Wow, twelve and already baking. Jack is almost 13 and would probably do much more damage if left to his own devices in the kitchen. Also? I did my mom a favor with the food coloring.
****Who am I trying to fool? I guess myself. I never played any sports, but if I had I would likely have been very bad at them.


Dear Diary,

Hi! I was just looking back and I realized I never told you about John F. Well, I broke up. See, I wanted to go with Ed. So I broke up. He says I used him. TOTAL LIE. I'm going with Chris. He's cute. Gotta go.


*I have no idea why, but it says "conosolodate" right across the top of the page, so I thought I would include it because I like the randomness of it.

My general impression of the tone of these posts is that I am a total slut- but I do happen to remember that I did not have my first kiss quite yet, so "going with" these boys involved giggling and maybe holding hands if you were brazen (which I generally was not) so let's keep that in mind in my defense.

Dear Diary,
Chris broke up. We didn't even go together 24 hours. Someone said it was a joke.* I think it was a pretty dumb ass joke, don't you? I love Steve. He's gorgeous. I mean really gorgeous. I'd be devoted to any boy that I went with.** I know it's true. I try to be like Gina- she's rad!*** I might go with William if he asked me.**** He asked Brook and Jen. I think he's not asking me because he thinks I like him. I like his brother. Well not much to say.

Your freind,

*poor me. Kids are so mean.
**poor, poor me. I am so sad for myself.
***She's still pretty rad.
****Isn't he the one who called me a hippie? Wasn't he on the list of "boys I'd never go with"? It appears I am lowering my standards. Poor, poor, poor me.

That's enough of that for today. Most of the time I think this stuff is pretty funny, but then I see the pain in between the lines and I want to go eat cookies and I start to see where all the "eating my pain" came from. I know I must have had happy times, but you have to figure that what I am putting in my diary is what is most affecting me- and it pretty much seems to be a constant stream of spending my days desperate for attention from any boy who will give me the time of day and then coming home disheartened from that only to receive a bunch of negative attention from my dad, interspersed with vows of how I feel I need to be "better" and bouts of baking.

The more things change, the more they stay the same.

In the meantime, this was playing on the radio:

Books I'm Reading

Beginning January 2010....

Outlander by Diana Gabaldon DONE! loved it!

Committed: A Skeptic Makes Peace With Marriage by Elizabeth Gilbert DONE! Good, although I didn't really relate. Eat, Pray, Love was definitely her masterpiece.

Dragonfly in Amber (Outlander Book 2) by Diana Gabaldon (947 pages) DONE! Must read the next one....

Voyager (Outlander Book 3) by Diana Gabaldon (1070 pages) DONE! This series is so well-done!

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Jane Austen and Seth Grahame-Smith DONE! I hated this book.

Drums of Autumn (Outlander Book 4) by Diana Gabaldon (1070 pages) DONE! My favorite setting so far, my second favorite of the series, but I am going to take a break before reading the next....

America's Cheapest Family by the Economides DONE! This is full of tips, and really inspires you to budget and plan.

WICKED - DONE! I was really disappointed in this book. I was expecting to love it but instead I found myself disinterested, just counting the pages until I was finally done.

The Templar Legacy by Steve Berry
- DONE! This was great. If you liked the DaVinci Code you would probably like this one, although devout Christians might find it offensive.

Girls in Trucks by Katie Crouch - DONE! Nice, easy read. Good, not great.

The Big Skinny: How I Changed My Fattitude by Carol Lay - DONE! Comic book, some good laughs and good tips on counting calories and eating healthy foods.

The Fiery Cross by Diana Gabaldon - the fifth Outlander book DONE! I am so in love with these characters.

The Low Carb Bible - DONE! Easy reading for a day, now to try the recipes.....

Getting Stoned With Savages by J. Maarten Troost. - DONE! another quick read, and very enjoyable.

Gorgeous Lies by Martha McPhee 11/8/2010/

I will continue to update as I start and finish books!

Feb 23, 2010

Early 1986 - the insecurity is the thing that won't get lost

I feel like I should preface this batch of diary entries by saying that I seem to play it pretty fast and loose with the word "hate" and that I don't believe I really hated my dad anymore than I really loved any of the boys I proclaim devotion to. It's clearly what I felt, since I wrote it repeatedly in my diary- and since I don't have any memory of any of the events I can't explain any further one way or the other. I can say that my father and I had (and continue to have) a very rocky relationship, that he was quite strict, and that in his defense he probably understood me as a 12 year old girl about as much as I understood myself, which was not at all.

Jan 2, 86 It's not fair, I hate my dad. I wish I could tell him. If I told him, he'd kill me. If I told my mom, she'd kill me, tell my dad, and he'd kill me. If I ever told my sisters They'd tell someone (handwriting unclear) would get around to my dad.

Gotta go,

*I seem to also play it fast and loose with the spelling of my name. It was always Jennifer, or Jenny, and then I tried a bunch of different spellings, then it was Jen or Jenn...but to my family and old friends it's still just Jenny or Jenn.

Dear Diary,
Today was not my day. William (new boy) called me a hippy* (he shouldn't talk) and Jen B said I was the class nerd. I think I'll redesign myself. These are the things I have to do:

Cut My Hair
how to= get ma to make an appointment
Lose Weight
how to= exercise and diet
Clear My Face

how to= wash, etc morning and night

Get A Whole Lot of In Style Things
how to= save money
Don't Show Legs.*

I could have nose surgery for my pudgy nose. On second thought, no surgery.

By, Jynni

*What kind of prophet was this William boy? I am a huge hippie. He was totally right, I just didn't know it yet.

**I didn't want to show my legs because I am a dark haired girl and I was pretty much the only girl my age (12) not allowed to shave them, and I got teased for it.

Wow. It's so odd to me, because I wasn't even fat. It's like the fat is a self-fulfilling prophecy. If I was still in elementary school and I was preoccupied with all this already, it's no wonder I turned out as neurotic as I did!
I hate my dad. I got grounded M-F and he wont let me go anywhere on Sat or Sun. He's a liar. I told my ma that.

Your pal,

I hate my dad. I hate my dad. I hate my dad. Love, Jenni

Feb 28, 86

Dear Diary,

I totally hate my dad. He's an a%shole. He gets mad at me, tells me it's about bedtime and I should get my pj's on. When I leave, he starts (really loudly) telling my sisters how I am such a brat. I hope he rots in hell. Anyways, then he sends me to bed. He came in in the middle of a show called "He's the Mayor"* and changed the channel.


*I had to look it up, but that was totally a real show that lasted one season. I suppose I didn't miss much.

I had a bunch more transcribed and blogger glitched, and it is time to feed my kids so I will have to re-enter those tomorrow. In the meantime, here is one of my favorite songs from 1986 (lyrics of which are the title of this post).


Yesterday afternoon I noticed a little tenderness in my ear. By last night, I was pretty sure I had some sort of earache and today I am positive. I happen to have some antibiotics on hand so I started taking those because I am pretty sure it is a sinus/ear infection type thing. I am hoping to be able to take it easy this afternoon, but as usual I have a million things to do (work, school, etc) and no time for much-needed rest quite yet!

Feb 22, 2010

St. Jenny's Fire - The end of 1985

I'm back with more journal transcripts. I decided to stop trying to use initials instead of names for all the boys. What, they're going to stumble across my blog and discover I liked them when we were eleven? I am sure they knew...I wasn't subtle then, why start now? I will, however, leave last names out just so potential employers don't google them and find my love declarations from 1985.

Sunday Nov. 4 85

Yesterday Lace came over and we walked around town. I hate my dad's guts. He's a f%cking sh*tball. Melanie is going to move. Hopefully closer. I am jealous of Rachel. She is going with MY Steve. I think I will write to Melanie.

Your friend,

Melsmel and I just talked an hour on the telephone. She said I'm one of her best friends. I'm glad. She's one of my best friends. I would go with Justin, Jacob, Aaron, Bobby, Adam, Steve, Chris. Megan is in student council. I heart boys.

Gotta go,


Guess what! I'm going with John F. He's cute and he's nice.

signing off,


Sorry I didn't write that much about John yet. Melsmel was here yesterday, and she's the only reason he said yes, because I never would have called him myself. I love John. I never really loved Steve, or Danny, or Matt.* I hope we never break up! Don't you? Melsmel enjoys playing on the sit-n-spin.

Gotta go,
I heart John F

*I have absolutely no idea who Danny or Matt even were. None.

Thurs 14, 85

Tomorrow will make seven days I've gone with John F. I called and talked to him. I love him. I got a cool new jacket. It's white and it feels like jean material. He (John) might come to my bus stop tomorrow. He was supposed to today, but he woke up late!

Gotta go,
Jen loves John

Dear Diary,

Hi, how's life? Sometimes I feel like crying. I met Brooke and John at the Christmas fair at the Vet's building. It as awesome. But, as the song gos "It Hurts to be in Love" only, it's easier when you're going with the person (like me!). I want to hang around John, but I'm scared to! Today made seven days I've gone with John. Casey sent me a picture of herself. I have to write back. So, I'm saying goodbye!

your pal,

11-25-85 Dear Diary, Today John came to my bus stop and freaked the hell out of me. I was playing in the gutter and he came up behind me and went ahh! I screamed and jumped up on the curb. Gone with him 17 days. Think I'll paint my nails. That's just so interesting, huh! Gotta jam, Jen

Um- why was I playing in the gutter? Am I allowed to wear nail polish now? and who told me it was cool to say "gotta jam"?

11-26-85 My mother just grounded me for a f*cky week. I have to clean my f*cky closet. My f*cky room has to be clean. my f*cky boyfriend is dressing as an Indian tomorrow. It's a f*cky world! That's my love for today. Gotta go, Jen

Memory alert! As I was typing up this one it triggered a random memory- I am pretty sure that he did dress as an Indian, and met me at my bus stop, and came up behind me and hugged me- forgetting that he had full Native American face paint on, and thus smearing my beloved white jean jacket with war paint. I remember trying to decide how I was going to explain that to my parents (because I was not allowed to have a boyfriend, let alone meet them at bus stops and accept hugs from them!). The scandal!

Dear Diary, I had my period. I hate Jaimee. My sister. She gets me busted all the time. Gotta go, Jenni

If there was any doubt about hormones being a key factor here, it's gone now.


Dear Diary, Had you almost a year (a year tomorrow). Opened most of my presents already. I got a hair dryer, lots of markers, paper, gloves, two sweater vests (one purple, one pink), one pair socks, 3 pair underwear, a yellow shirt and tie*, ten dollar Chuck E Cheese gift certificate, one dollar, a little stuffed animal, and I still haven't checked my stocking (tomorrow). Love, Jenny PS- I love Steve AGAIN

* Yes, a shirt and tie. It was 1985, people, and I was so very Ally Sheedy from St. Elmo's Fire. I wish I could find a picture. It looked especially awesome under my white jean jacket.

This brings us to the end of 1985. Let's never go there again.

A Tale of Four Movies

I managed to watch four- yes, four!- movies this past weekend. I thought I would share in case you are looking for a good movie to watch, but you should be forewarned- I am quite behind the times. Around here, a trip to the movie theater is about a once-a-year event. We simply don't do it. For the four of us to go is astronomically expensive, and even for just Richard and I to go costs as much as buying a dvd, or better yet, getting takeout and watching a movie at home. That being said, we also hardly ever get pay-per-views. Richard works for our local cable company, so we get all the "premium" channels on demand for free, so we tend to stick with those or our trusty Netflix account. This means we save a lot of money, but it also means most people have already seen movies before we get around to it...but maybe you missed these or skipped them, so here's what I saw.

Friday night while Richard hung out with the guys I snuggled up in my bed with some dark chocolate and watched The Unborn.

This was the worst of the movies I saw (in fact, each movie was better than the last) and it was totally predictable and unmemorable. Girl is haunted/possessed, everyone thinks girl is going crazy, girl finally seeks out help and banishes her demons- or did she? There are dozens of better scary movies out there.

Saturday night was date night, and I talked Richard into watching A Perfect Getaway, which I had gotten from Netflix.

This movie was pretty good, although a little predictable. Several couples are hiking, and there are murderers on the run somewhere in their midst... We spotted the twist pretty early on, but Timothy Olyphant gave a great performance and the scenery was breathtaking.

Sunday is almost always movie day for the kids and I, and we went with Nim's Island this week.

This movie was not at all what I thought it was. For some reason, I thought it was a fantasy film, but it was actually about a girl stranded on an island (Abigail Breslin) and the agoraphobic adventure author (Jodie Foster) trying to help her. It was cute, and once again lovely scenery.
Definitely a good movie for the whole family.

But then the movie was over, and the kids wanted to go on their computers, and I needed to get some work done....so off they went, and I sifted through the free movies and started one while I worked. About ten minutes in, I was so enthralled that I paused the movie, finished my work, and then restarted the movie from the beginning so I could give it my full attention. The movie was Love in the Time of Cholera.

This movie was epic. It was absolutely beautiful. Breathtaking. It romanced me. I do not just love this movie, I am in love with it. I think it may be my new very favorite movie. It's a fabulous love story. I laughed, I cried, I totally loved it.

There you have it, one weekend, four very different movies.

Feb 21, 2010

For Worse or for Better - October 1985

Oct 9, 85

I'm finally going with someone. Amazing! His name is SB. Jen and a whole bunch of people are gonna see Weird Science and Summer Rental. S is. Doubt I can go.

In love,


Oct 12, 85

Dear Diary,

I didn't get to go to the movies (of course). S's last name is B. His name is- SB. He's an extra special, not so fine guy. I heart him (I guess). It's only Saturday, and I'm dying. I can't wait till Monday. I heart S.

IN love,

Oops! Forgot to tell you! My uncle Donny and David (maybe S's dad)were good friends. I heart S!

That is the price of living in a small town and being the third generation to go through it's school system. You mention a boy's name to your mom and turns out his dad was your uncle's school chum.


Sun. Oct 13, 85

S#$t! Now I can't wear nail polish. Mom let's me but I just asked dad and he said "as long as you don't wear it to school, or out of the house." I felt like saying f%ck you. but I didn't. (thank god). I have decided to swear and say what I want in this diary. Ginger's (my dogs) 2nd year with us is almost here! I am going to be a freak for Halloween.

Gotta go,


P.S. BR is a buttf&ck.

I look at this and just wonder why, if my mom already said I could wear the nail polish, I then asked my dad? Also, boy did I have a foul mouth when I was eleven.

SB broke up. It is unfortunate. But he is still my freind. F*ck it all anyway! I went with him weds. thurs. fri. sat. sun. mon. tues. weds. thurs. and until 8:40 fri. morn. almost 9 days!

F#ck that damn brat! I am never, ever, speaking to her again.

Forget what I just said. I heart my family, but Jaimee's a spoiled little fart, Jaysa's too sweet. Dad's just too damn stubborn, and mom, well, she's cool but she's too stuck on working. I'm way to confused. I want to be soo many things when I grow up. I don't know what I want.

My christmas list* is=
cabbage patch
fun stix
jump rope

JD is fine. But, he's going with Andy!

Gotta go,

* apparently I knew exactly what I wanted. Oh, and I did speak to my sister again after all.

Dear diary,

My life is o.k. but at the moment I'm stuck in the middle of in between.

Good Things-

I'm not a lez*
I'm in love

Bad Things=

I've got Acne
I'm ugly
I'm not going with SB

Melanie might go with BR. I would die to go with SB.

Your pal,

*my 1985 self meant no disrespect to the lesbian community and my 2010 self apologizes for her ignorance.


BR said no to Melsmel. Melsmel is going to ask BR for me. How much you wanna bet he says no? Might go trick or treatin' with a few people. I'm a campaign manager for Jen. Can't wait til Halloween.

Man, I would not want to be eleven again, not for a million dollars. These were all the entries for October of 1985. I remember none of this, and I am starting to see why I blacked it out. Totally painfully embarrassing. It's funny because I graduated high school with a lot of these same people I mention, and some of them I still know or am in contact with on facebook, and as silly as some of this stuff is, it is the stuff that binds us together and gives us a history, and while I wouldn't relive it for the world, I also wouldn't trade it. This one (from 1985, of course) is dedicated to those lifelong friends and acquaintances.

Gnow- what?

I recently blog-surfed my way into the site of an e-course called Gnowfglins. I was fascinated by the concept, and I debated and debated but finally decided to take the plunge! Gnowfglins stands for God's natural, organic, whole foods, grown locally, in season. It's a five-month adventure into traditional cooking- a "simple plan to cook healthy food", and I can't wait to get started! Registration is open until tomorrow at midnight PST, if you're interested. Here are some links to check it out:

eCourse FAQs
Tips for Establishing and Maintaining Routines
Sneak Peak Video: Make Easy Whole-Grain Soaked Muffins!
GNOWFGLINS Fundamentals eCourse

Check it out, and I'll be back later today with more 1985 journal entries.

Feb 20, 2010

Kids in the Kitchen

Today the kids and I cooked together. First, we baked these cookies.

We used the recipe right off the bag of Ghiradelli milk chocolate chips, except that we substituted coconut oil for half the butter, and then we threw in a big handful of shredded coconut so that we ended up with chocolate chip coconut cookies! They are super tasty, and a little bit healthier than the standard.

Next, we pulled out some Trader Joe's wheat pizza dough and started rolling.

Kids love this part!

Next, we topped our pizzas. Tucker is pretty heavy-handed with the cheese!

I was pretty heavy handed with the mushrooms!

Here's my pizza. I skipped the red sauce and just topped mine with a little olive oil, garlic, cheese, some crumbled sausage, and the mushrooms I spoke of.

Dinner is served! We have pizza about once a week- usually frozen or perhaps a take and bake from Costco, but this is definitely going to be our new go-to family pizza night plan!

My next step is to start making my own dough!

Summer 1985 - Angst Arrives

It is here, in the diary entries below, that I think puberty starts to rear it's ugly head. I am about eleven and a half and it is the summer between fifth and sixth grade.

June 22, 1985

I am sick of it. Fashion! Style- I'll just get to close to them and they'll run off. It makes me sick. I am going to change my life! I'm going to be popular in sixth grade. I doubt I will, but I'll sure try.


P.S. School got out the 14 of June.

Hmmm....speaking of fashion, here's a shirt I sported about that time. This explains a lot.

? August, 85

I seriously try to write but it's not that easy. I want to call Mel, can't find phone book this is not my day. Ma & Pa went to Reno & got me Cyndi the 2nd, Cootie, and Clara. School starts Sept 3rd (?). I got some cool clothes and things. I hurt inside sometimes I cry, without a reason. It feels like my Insides are Just lying there In a dark pit this may sound stupid but I think Jenni isn't me. I know I was meant to be someone else. J is a brat, who is only acquainted to the 'in' crowd because of an old friend. I'm gonna change her!

By, by,
Not Jenni

I am pretty sure that Cyndi the 2nd, Cootie, and Clara were stuffed animals that my dad won at Circus-Circus. He's pretty fantastic at those pop-the-balloon-with-the-dart games. It blows my mind that this diary entry was almost 25 years ago, and I was already trying to change myself, already declaring the self-hatred that seems to be the theme of my life. I think that when I say I'm only in the in crowd because of an old friend I am talking about Gina (my best friend, even still) but I am not really sure. I am not even sure who the in crowd was, but I sure seemed to know it back then.

Those are the only entries from Summer 1985. The next entry jumps ahead to October, when things appear to be temporarily looking up- I will start with that tomorrow! Here's one of my favorite hits from 1985, which I thought was appropriate to this particular flavor of angst.

Feb 19, 2010

It's Natural

I have a slight obsession with all things natural. I recently tried to return my hair to a more natural state by letting it dread lock. My husband's words were quite supportive but his eyes said something else, so for a Valentine surprise for him I took those baby dreads out. Sniff! I loved them, but I love the feeling of my husband running his hand through my hair more. He denied that he hated them for a while, but finally when I offered to start back on the dreads he admitted he'd rather I shaved my head! I figure it's even because he keeps his hair buzzed or really short because that's how I like it on him. As long as we can make each other happy, what else is there?

I dyed my hair once I got it smooth again...So my hair color? Not natural- but I am working on getting my diet back to natural. I'm not counting or weighing in these days (because that's not natural!). I have just ceased buying processed crap and it's slowly leaving the house for what I hope is for good, save a special occasion like a birthday. On a trip to Costco recently I purchased nothing but meat and fruit and vegetables, and that's what we're striving to eat, with the occasional whole grain thrown in. I'm drinking water and tea with natural sweetener (either Purevia or agave nectar) and I'm experimenting with coconut oil lately as a new healthy oil. You can read about some of the health benefits of coconut oil here.

Lately, I have also been reading up on natural beauty products. I was very inspired by this post on Passionate Homemaking and tonight I whipped up a batch of homemade deodorant.

I also combined some Castor oil and olive oil into a little squeeze bottle I picked up at Target so that I can try the Oil Cleansing Method (OCM) which is something I've read about on blog after blog. Simple Mom had the best post I've seen on it here.

I tried it for the first time just about an hour ago and I am already impressed. My skin feels great already! I'll try to remember to report back after a few weeks and let you know how it's going with both the OCM and the homemade deodorant.

Something else I tried for the first time tonight...

Holy 85% cacao, batman! That is some strong chocolate! It made me crave red wine.

That's the haps with me these days. Mostly, I've been working, doing my schoolwork, and reading in my spare time. I've been cutting out television when I can and plowing through the second book in the Outlander series, which I am about to get back to...




Spring 1985 - The John Taylor Chronicles

Feb 19, 1985

Dear Diary,

Hi, Hows life? Sorry I havent written for soo long, but you know how it is. guess what! I got some freedom! also Stephanie Anne* gots new clothes. I just started a DURAN DURAN scrapbook. It all started when I saw John Taylor (Duran band member) he is fine.

well, by,

*Stephanie Anne was my knock-off Cabbage Patch kid. I wonder what I meant about freedom?

march 27, 85

Sorry, I can't keep up with everything. Duran Duran broke up. But its o.k because my favorite one and Andy Taylor are forming a group. I am so glad. I am also very mad! Why can't they keep Duran Duran? It may be only the most popular group but who cares? Not Me.*

I have went crazy over penpals. I have about 4.**

By by,


P.S. John Taylor is still fine (I guess)

vainly in love with BR***

*I am getting the feeling I cared very much about the Duran Duran breakup. The new group I am referring to was Power Station (remember them?). Here is an interview from 1985 in which John Taylor (be still my 11 year old heart!) discusses it.

**I have no recollection whatsoever of penpals, so this must have been a brief hobby.

***In the actual diary, of course, the name is written out- but I am just going to go with initials to protect the identities of my crush victims.

Tues. 9, 1985 April

Sorry I know I havent written. I am going to write (try to) every day. Just want to tell you (only).

your freind (and BR's total slave)


Tues 10 April 17*

Decided to rate people in class.**

BR is soooooo fine. I'd rather have John Taylor.


*That's what it said for the date. I have no explanation.

** following this announcement is a detailed chart in which I list every student in my class and give them letter grades for the categories of both looks and personality. I am noticing that given the grades some of my closer friends received, I clearly graded on a curve.

Despite my intentions to write every day, these were all the entries for Spring of 1985. After this it jumps ahead to June 22nd, at which point I have finished up the fifth grade and am making summertime resolutions about the sixth grade. You can just see my crazy starting to creep in- tune in tomorrow.

Feb 18, 2010

Look, Mama!

Tucker shows off the fruit loop necklace he made at the library today with Richard (while I read in the car- oh, the silence!).

January of 1985

Jan 13 "85"
my house

What a boring day, not much to talk about. My room is a mess, my hair is a mess.

My favorite singer is Cyndi Lauper. She sings lots of songs like She Bop, Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, Witness, and lots of others.

I am just finishing a mini tootsie roll.

I am reading a book called The Language of the Goldfish. It's pretty good!




Jan. 16, 1985
my house

Sorry I havn't written for a while but I havn't had time. Do you think I should be a teacher, a waitress, an authoress, or try and be an actress when I grow up? I can't make up my mind.

If I were a teacher, I would be around kids which I like it would probably be first grade I taught. This choice would make me happy.

Waitress- if I were a waitress I would be like my mother which is really cool, and would meet lots of people- that choice would make me happy!

Author- if i were an author i could make pretty good money but it would all depend on how I named my books if i called my book "20 ways to lose weight" it would be just like any other weight loss book if i called it "twenty ways to lose your flab and be yourself" everyone would consider it more than it it were the other title this would only be if I couldn't make it as any of the other jobs already listed!

actress- an actress is just like an author. so heres my decision


by by,


Jan 25th
my room

Sometimes I think my dad Hates Me. He spanked just for not cleaning my sister's mess. How mean. We were watching Parent Trap at the best part. Sometimes I love him and Sometimes I hate him.

Your freind (?)

Those are all the first month's entries of the oldest diary I have, typed just as written- spelling errors and all. They are from January 1985, so I had just turned 11 years old. I am completely amused with how I said that if I couldn't make it as a waitress I would be an author- isn't that supposed to be the other way around?