Thursday, June 30, 2011

the price of greatness

Since I entered government 45 years ago, I’ve shifted my views and changed my mind on a good many things as circumstances, new information, or logic dictated.  But I have yet to see evidence that would dissuade me from this fundamental belief: that America does have a special position and set of responsibilities on this planet.  I share Winston Churchill’s belief that “the price of greatness is responsibility…[and] the people of the United States cannot escape world responsibility.” 

~As Delivered by Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates, Washington, DC, Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Wednesday, June 29, 2011


the cable is cancelled.

i know, i said i was doing this last month, but i never got around to doing it. but yesterday i called from work to cancel the cable. i sat on hold for 20 minutes and proofread a document while listening to muzack and cheesy promotional announcements.

i finally spoke with a customer service representative who verified twice that i did indeed want to cancel the cable and not renew it for my new place.

yes, i said. i do really want to cancel the cable today.

okay, he said. it's cancelled.

little did i know that he really meant it. that right then, right there the cable really was cancelled. when i got home that evening and sat down to chill for a minute and watch tv for one last time i was plum outta luck. no signal at all. and you know what? that's okay with me.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011


So, this moving thing has thrown me for a bit of an psycho-emotional loop. (Yes, I'm psycho and yes I'm emotional.) It's been a little scarier than usual to make this move and it's only four blocks--that's right only four blocks. You'd think this would be easier compared to moving from Utah to DC or putting my stuff in storage to head off to Afghanistan. I'm even way more organized for this move than I have been for any other moves. I'm just determined to make this as physically painless as possible and it's working.

But, and yes there is a but, I'm having a bit of trouble emotionally making this move. It turns out that this is a pretty big step for me towards the life I have always envisioned for myself and it's scary as heck! Funny and a bit scary just how much this move represents for me.

I've been resisting moving on from a couple of issues in my life and this move to a bigger, above-ground space has opened up a whole set of dragons to be dealt with in order to feel good about this change. It's all good and what's been boiling up to the surface really is stuff that needs to be dealt with, and initially it was proving much more difficult than I thought.

So, why is it that fear rears its ugly head when great things are happening or good decisions are being made? Why am I so afraid of good things happening? Well, that's a question I took to a good friend who has a gift for helping people see themselves as God sees them and also for helping them "let go and let God." In talking with her about my feelings, I've seen once again just how much God loves me and how aware of me and my problems He is. He really does know me, what I need and he gives it so freely.

I know this stuff. It's not anything new to me, but what is amazing to me is how easy it is for him to heal and give answers sometimes. I shouldn't be so surprised by this, but I always am, just a little. It's like I don't quite trust the system yet, even though time and time again it's been proven to work. I think that somehow maybe I'm not truly worthy of help or a quick answer, but as it turns out I'm just afraid. God sees my fear and works through it anyway. I'm working on that having no fear thing, and I'm guessing it will be a life long project.

In the meantime, I'm concentrating on moving forward with faith and putting those things over which I have no control in God's hands. After all he created this world, so I'm pretty certain he can create good stuff out of my personal chaos and help me tame my inner dragons.

I really love my cute, little apartment. It's been a cozy refuge from the storm for me, even with all the craziness of break-ins, mice and birds that have happened over the past few months. It's been good for me to be on my own and see what I'm capable of doing.

I'm excited for my new space, and I'm going to have soooo much space. I'm going to have lots of sunlight, a front and back garden to care for, and a front porch to sit on and read. And this is the life I've dreamed of having for a long time now, and I'm taking the first steps towards making it mine. Scary? Totally! Exciting? You bet'cha! It wouldn't be worth doing if I didn't have to stretch myself a bit and do some more growing.

So, here's to moving, changing, growing, believing, accepting and good things happening!

Friday, June 24, 2011

things that made me smile this week

-packing for the move next weekend.

-i'm still smiling over the garden at my new house.

-watching the drop dead diva season premiere again.

-sore muscles after a bike ride and a run.

-retaking the color code personality test and discovering that yellow is now my primary color. usually when i take this test, i'm a power hungry red with playful, creative yellow as my secondary color. change is good.

-getting a new perspective on a personal problem with which i've been wrestling.

-telling the guys at work about my recent dating experiences and having them laugh at how ridiculous some men are. afterwards, a few of them told me that listening to my experiences made them so grateful to be married. and i thought, "wow, i bet your wives are grateful to be married to you too."

-air conditioning.

-the smell of rain off in the distance. such a clean, earthy smell.

-remember this post about a friend's betrayal. this week my friend trusted me enough to ask for help.

have a fabulous weekend!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

surprise garden

this lovely little surprise garden was the only good thing to 
come out of the disastrous first date/meet-up earlier this week.
i never knew this was here before.

i love surprise gardens.

thoughtful thursday: masterpiece

pod from here

Our great and glorious masterpiece is to live appropriately.
~Michael de Montaigne

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

the light

He is the light and the life of the world; yea, a light that is endless, that can never be darkened; yea, and also a life which is endless, that there can be no more death. ~Mosiah 16:9

This is what is going through my head today. I'm so thankful for my testimony of Christ, my truest friend and brother.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

reasons i love dc: baseball

uncovering the field after a one hour rain delay

if you look closely you can see the top of the library of congress poking up.

a golden sunset

the moon hits a homerun!

oh yeah, the nationals won 8-4 against the orioles last friday.

Monday, June 20, 2011

conversations with my nephews

i love talking with my nephews on the phone. they just make me laugh!

nephew G: hi christine! are you sucking brains today?
me: nope. i'm good. why do you want me to suck your brains today? ('cause after all i am the evil brain sucking aunt who must be stopped by superman's laser eyes.)
nephew G: nope, that's not a good idea.

later while talking to his mom, i hear noise in the background. mom tells me that dad has him pinned down to clip his nails and G is fighting back, saying, "i want my nails to be long and sharp like wolfman's" (his name for wolverine). this kid just kills me!


nephew B: are you coming over today?
me: no, i'm not. i live too far away.
nephew B: why?
me: 'cause i live in washington, dc.
nephew B: oh..... do you have any dogs?
me: no.
nephew B: oh...... do you have a bear?
me: no (laughing).
nephew B: why not?
me: because bears are way too big to have as pets in the city.
nephew B: oh..... okay..... i love you.
me: i love you too. m-wah!
mom gets on the phone and tells me he is blowing me kisses.


nephew L: how are your fish?
me: well, one died a little while ago, but penny is doing okay.
nephew L: you have a fish named penny?!?!?!
me: yes, i do.
nephew L: which one is she?
me: she's the silvery pink one.
nephew L: oh........
me: so what are you giving your dad for father's day?
nephew L: cards. lots of cards.
me: oh, that's nice. anything else?
nephew L: well, i got a sucker at church, but i didn't know he liked suckers and it has my germs on it now.
me: well, it's probably better if you don't give it to him then.
nephew L: oh that's okay. B is licking it now.
me: (laughing and imagining dad's surprise at his empty sucker stick)

i love these boys. they are so sweet and full of life and love.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

happy father's day

happy father's day to all the wonderful fathers in my life.
thank you for your example.
i love you all.

conquering the jungle

my friend JP and i worked at the house this morning.
this is what we started with--a jungle.

four hours and eight bags of debris later this is what we have.

it looks like a garden. yay! thanks JP.

there's still more to do but it's off to a good start.
we're going to pull out the weed trees on the right. 

we still have the back to do as well...

Thursday, June 16, 2011

thoughtful thursday: leap

All growth is a leap in the dark, 
a spontaneous unpremeditated act
without benefit of experience.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

i don't know what i'm doing

Lately, I've been pushing myself to get out of the rut. It's hard and exhausting this pushing myself thing. Slowly I feel myself coming alive and looking ahead. I'm liking this.

The improv class I'm taking this summer is part of this. One of the golden rules is to say yes to whatever is offered up by another actor. Another is to offer up enthusiasm and support. And another is to focus on being good to work with, not funny. All great advice for improv and life, I think.

I noticed that I tended to be a little scared and my ideas reflected this when I put myself out there in our scenes. At one point I was loudly telling my partner to get me out of here (granted, it fit the scene in which we were trying to disguise ourselves as zombies). So when I did get out of that scene I was relieved and also a little surprised to realize that I really did want out of that scene, because I had no idea what I was doing. But I did it.

I don't always know what I'm doing or how it's going to work out, and it's a little scary. But I'm here trying to do it and learn something along the way. And maybe next time I'll know what I'm doing or at least have some better ideas.

Monday, June 13, 2011

advice from actors

art doesn't 
it just stops 
in interesting
places. ~anonymous 
(actually the actor couldn't remember who said this first)

lessons from the actors workshop in nyc:

1. say yes

2. get involved

3. create relationships 

4. create your own opportunities

5. play well with each other

6. there is no silver bullet

this was what i got out of the q&a session the actors held with the high school students i went with to nyc. as i listened, i thought about my life and realized that what they were saying about acting was universal. and then i started taking notes on the ideas popping into my head.

i liked that the actors didn't talk down to high school students with stars in their eyes during their first visit to nyc. it was pretty straight forward talk about working hard. putting in the time. there aren't any shortcuts. and sometimes it's just plain luck. being in the right place at the right time.

i want more of that teen age joie de vivre back in my life. these kids were so open and fearless. they hadn't been told no yet. they were so willing to put themselves out there. to make total fools of themselves. to laugh. to screw up. to try something new. and to succeed. 

i think i need more of this. so, tonight is the first night of the improv essentials acting class i'm taking this summer. woohoo!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

reasons i love dc: fireflies

fireflies are my all time favorite summer evening phenomenon.
i love watching them blink to life for the briefest of moments
and then go out, only to blink on again in a totally different place
a few moments later.

i drove up to my bishop's home this evening and followed a trail of fireflies.
he and his family live near the national arboretum, so as i drove by
there were tons of fireflies flicking on and off all across the road.

i also love watching them in my backyard.
i hope that some fireflies will follow me to my new house.

i wish i could figure out how to photograph them.

in the meantime i'll leave with these two beautiful firefly scenes.

Friday, June 10, 2011

sometimes i just don't have anything to say

sometimes i just don't have anything profound to say. so here is my list of things that made me smile this week:

~ a photo text from brother J of my newest nephew W sleeping on mom's torso. congrats!

~ my parents have been married for 38 years this week. their 12th grandchild was born on their anniversary; what a great gift. happy anniversary mom and dad!

~ great conversation with good friends on sunday night during a potluck to say goodby to a dear friend. however, i'm not smiling now as i think about her leaving.

~ seeing my new house again and starting to plan decor and furniture placement in my head.

~ sorting through stuff and compiling a get-rid-of pile. it's nice to downsize.

~ fleetwood mac's album rumours (it's old, but so good). adele's album 21 (seriously, this girl rips your heart out when she sings). ingrid michaelson's album everybody (i just love this album). seriously some good music here.

~ the sountrack to 500 days of summer during my run on monday. it was almost the perfect length, because it ended 3 blocks from my house as i finished up my run. and it was my last outdoor run this week because when you combine 97 degrees with 80% humidity you get a heat index of like 110, and that's the weather in dc this week. blegh.

~ hearing about my four year old nephew G's crushes and desire to be a super hero. he's in love with the young lady who cuts material for his mom at the fabric store and mooning over a little girl from church. he also likes meat, a lot. this kid seriously makes me laugh.

~ a bike ride.

~ sweet, cold, perfectly pink watermelon when it's super hot outside.

~ leaving work early, just because.

~ watering my flowers each evening as the sun goes down.

~ a deep conversation about being christ like, what that means in a relationship, the christian belief that wives are subservient to the husband in a marriage and how to reconcile that belief with being christ like. good stuff.

~ seeing one of my favorite coworkers get promoted. way to go YN3!

~ turning on my car's AC when the heat index is 110 degrees farenheit.

~ wearing a skirt or dress every day this week. ah, summer!

~ a wake up phone call is just so much better than my alarm clock, even if i am pretty grouchy when i first wake up.

~ quiet time spent with the divine.

~ listening to a friend M's miraculous story of how she met her husband-to-be (and i'm not using the word miraculously lightly in this case). her wedding shower was so much fun and full of such good women who love each other that it uplifted me as well. god really is in the workings and he will speak to us. a wonderfully gorgeous night.

~ finding lots to say when i sit down to compile my gratitude list for the week.

this week of posting every day is for ss.
she made  me smile this week too.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

living "i love you"

i read this lovely blog post and it made me cry.

"SAYING “I love you” isn’t as important as LIVING “I love you”.  I see “I love you” LIVED in front of me every day.  I want to live it too." ~Kathi Whittington

and then this made me cry each time i watched it. what a great example of "living i love you" right here:

alright, now go and live it.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

a sneak peek

hello new house in which i'm going to live!

 the entry way
 the galley kitchen
 the exposed brick wall
 the dining & living room
the sun room!

just a little sneak peek of where i'm moving to at the end of the month.
wait till you see my bedroom and closet.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

family reunion location?

for the next boyer family reunion, i choose this place.

it's a magical, fantasy landscape.

so weirdly beautiful.

the Gardens of Marqueyssac, Vezac, France.

but sisters, i'm thinking we leave the guys at home with the kids for this one.
2012 anyone???

photos from 

Monday, June 6, 2011

little things

so, there's this little blog i started following recently.
everyday there's something new to love about life.
it just makes me smile. i hope you smile too, when
you click here to read more. life's just fabulous!

all images from justlittlethings

Saturday, June 4, 2011

reasons i love dc

a very kind soul took the time to place this cardboard announcement
on the fence in the hopes that
this earring would find its long lost mate.

just one of the reasons i love living on capitol hill. 

Friday, June 3, 2011

the one with the machete...

i have great friends.
one in particular who came to my rescue after i was robbed.
he loaned me his spare machete!

after all, i needed a way to defend myself if the intruder(s) came back.

a machete is the perfect accessory.
just what every girl needs when she's living on her own in the big city
and worried about zombie attacks.

a machete is handy for those times 
when a girl needs to sneak through the bushes
and carry out ninja attacks.
a machete is so inconspicuous.

but seriously, ld is a great friend 
and the machete provided great laughs
and at 3am when i heard voices outside in the alley
i felt better knowing i had the machete under the bed.

thank you ld.
i'm so gonna miss you.

photos by jp

Thursday, June 2, 2011

einstein's dreams

the empty stage after the performance of einstein's dreams.
In the world in which time is a circle, every handshake, every kiss, every birth, every word, will be repeated precisely. So too every moment that two friends stop becoming friends, every time that a family is broken because of money, every vicious remark in an argument between spouses, every opportunity denied because of a superior's jealousy, every promise not kept. (excerpt from Einstein's Dreams)

Tonight I went to a performance of Einstein's Dreams a play based on the book of the same name. It was surprisingly brilliant in its simplicity and the flow of the story line was easy to follow. I enjoyed seeing a play that was very different from what I expected and left me wanting more. 

One of my favorite things about the cast was that there were varying levels of ability on display and physical capability as well. After the show I briefly met some of the cast members and one of whom was sitting in a wheel chair. I had watched her movements on-stage and was struck by how gracefully she moved, even though at times I could tell it was hard for her. Another cast member was a young man with a beautifully melancholy face and difficulty using his hands. His face was so expressive and at times so joyful it just made me smile. Their physical hardships didn't detract from the performance at all. Instead it added a level of human-ness which reminded me that everyone can find a way to do what they love from finding theories on time to acting in a show to well whatever it is. I think this was the best part--watching people do what they so obviously loved.

I also loved the storyline. It was fun to imagine what Einstein's dreams might have been like. The words were beautiful and I felt as though I were hearing poetry as I listened to Einstein's thoughts on time and how he came up with his theory of relativity. I think I now must read the book. There is an excerpt  here.

Ticket information here at Spooky Action Theater. The theater is very small, so you'll definitely want to plan ahead. I'm probably going back to see it, 'cause after all Einstein pretty much rocks!

By the way "spooky action" is a really cool scientific fact. Basically, spooky action is when two particles become so synchronized or entangled that when one changes the other also changes instantaneously no matter how far apart they are. Einstein originally made fun of the theory and wrote a paper on it, which later became the basis for a whole new branch of quantum science. You can read about it in layman's terms here--"the closest thing we have to magic".

thoughtful thursday: looking back on earth

When you're finally up at the moon looking back on earth, all those differences and nationalistic traits are pretty well going to blend, and you're going to get a concept that maybe this really is one world and why the hell can't we learn to live together like decent people.
— Frank Borman, Apollo 8, Newsweek, 23 December 1968

more quotes here from astronauts
 on seeing the earth from space

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

3 breakfasts for on-the-go

menu 1:
breakfast cereal
kashi golean crunch in a ziploc.
pour *lactose free milk (i'm experimenting) and
add blueberries or raspberries or 1/2 banana
into a leak proof container. pack a spoon and napkin.
head to work and eat at my desk.

menu 2:
a breakfast sandwich
1 slice **turkey bacon cut up right into the frying pan
(add some salsa if you want),
1 egg scrambled, and
1 trader joe's mini pita warmed up.
shovel the scrambled egg with fixin's into the pita
and wrap it in a paper towel to eat in the car.
***odwalla super food juice watered down
      with some oj in a leak proof container.

menu 3:
the smoothie
*lactose free milk
a small scoop bran or flax seeds
coconut water
ice cubes
blend and pour into a leak proof container.
rush out the door.

these are all breakfasts i eat on the go. i'm not a morning person. i like to stay in bed as long as i can, so i rarely make time to sit down and eat breakfast before i leave the house. i've taken all of these out the door with me to eat at work or in the car. they are mess free and only one requires an utensil.

*lactose free milk is good; way better than almond or soy milk. i'm not lactose intolerant, but i wanted to try milk alternatives to see how my i react to them. so far, much better on the rumblies in my tumbly.

**as a family of one, i'm often loathe to purchase an entire package of turkey bacon. however, i finally figured out to make it work. i cut the bacon slices in half, lay out a large piece of plastic wrap and accordion fold two halves of bacon into the plastic wrap at a time, stick the stack in a freezer bag and freeze. i can easily separate one slice at a time and cut it up with kitchen shears into a frying pan for breakfast.

***the odwalla super food smoothie is good, but it needs a little sweetness and the oj does the trick. lots of necessary, yummy green stuff in this.