Saturday, December 15

it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas cookies

A few weeks ago we wanted to have a bit more Christmas in our lives, so we had a few kids over to make some cookies. Love these folks, and their cookie results.

Emily Foxy Fox rolling away

Logan & Burton taking their jobs seriously

Anie nursing a burnt hand (our oven strikes again!!). Let's hope she doesn't sue.

Sometimes the frosting explodes all over your hand.

Emily makes Elf-cooking-making look easy

Somehow Janaya and Doug dodged all the pics, but trust me--they were there.

poetry or die

Tonight we had a joint birthday par-tay for Sarah and me. We felt the best way to celebrate the big 26 was with a celebration Sarah titled "Poetry or Die." We came dressed up as Beatniks/Sprockets, and Doug was able to wear not only one of my sweaters, but also a pair of my pants... I don't want to talk about it. Then we all wrote a bunch of nouns on slips of paper, threw them in a bowl, and pulled them out to get topics for different types of poems. We scored some great ones, like a haiku about "lip kisses" and a sonnet about "electricians," "cavity," "applesauce," "Assistant to the Regional Manager," and something else.

We snapped when the poems were good, and beat on the drums (Sarah's tupperware) when we were feeling the groove. It was good times.

Here's my tanka poem (a Japanese poem with 5-7-5-7-7 syllables on each line) using the words "possum" and "Reno":
Give me a possum
Preferably in Reno
So I can handle
Turning age twenty-six and
My husband wearing my pants.

Monday, December 10

yeah, that's a word

It makes me laugh that I teach my spellchecker that words like "ZooBalloo" and "Cuttables" are real words. Oh working for a craft company…

PS- I think I've confused people with my "father of mine" post... I was laid off from my job a year and a half ago. My current job remains intact. Thanks for caring! :)

Sunday, December 9

We don't do Xmas

An ad I found in a British craft magazine. You just wouldn't see something like this in a comparable American magazine.

Happy Christmas!*

*Remember, no postal charges.

Thursday, December 6

father of mine

Friday December 7 marks the 29th birthday of my dad (note: he has been 29 for as long as I've known him).

At such a special time as this I think it's time to let the world know why Jim Dunlop rocks my world:

1. He's hilarious. I quote him all the time, and I think it took me going to college to realize how many times I say, "Do you know what my dad always says?..."

2. He's handsome, and he was quite the catch as a young man (his genes combined with my mom's genes have really done some great things for us).

3. He lovingly called me a brat for about 3 years straight whilst I was in high school. This makes me laugh because it was so accurate a title.

4. He's a handy man extraordinaire. The man has talents out the wazoo.

5. He used to cut our bangs when we were little.

6. He's always supported me in my pursuits--school, sports, boys, etc. If the boys were dumb, he was always happy to let us know they were dorks. Just ask Cyd.

7. He once told me that he thought I should wear red lipstick more often.

8. He often asks us as we come downstairs, "You're going to where that??"

9. He has an end of the driveway rule. Long story, but he says if we want to leave at 8:00 am, then we need to be at the end of the driveway at 8:00 am. "The difference between the garage and the end of the driveway is about 20 minutes."

10. He loves his family and adores his grandchildren. He's survived having 5 girls and no sons... give the man a medal!

11. Last Christmas he and my mom planned this gigantic Survival obstacle course for us in the yard. There was running, tears, shouting, cheering, and more. It was freaking awesome.

12. He encourages us to scratch his head. Oft.

13. He said Doug should marry me when Doug talked to him. Doug was relieved. So was I.

14. He was my greatest fan when I played volleyball. He knows the sport better than I do because of it.

15. He's got a work ethic that could kill a teenage girl but totally blesses an adult.

16. He's great for advice. Especially when you call him from the Movies 8 parking lot because it's the first place you thought to pull over and you're crying and you've just been laid off from your job.

17. He loves the gospel, even though he hates conducting in sacrament meeting.

18. He gives excellent dad hugs.

19. He used to give us indian burns and coco butts. Tip: Don't ask him what those are.

20. He tells me I'm his favorite ("just don't tell your sisters").

Wednesday, December 5

I ran over a towel because I'm cool and I do what I want

My sister Jessica sent this to me yesterday. ‘Tis funny. Create a sentence following the instructions, and please do share your results!

Pick the month you were born:
January..... I kicked
February... I loved
March....... I karate chopped
April......... I licked
May.......... I jumped on
June......... I smelled
July.......... I did the Macarena with
August...... I had lunch with
September. I danced with
October..... I sang to
November. I yelled at
December.. I ran over

Pick the day (number) you were born on:
1............. A birdbath
2........ .... A monster
3............. A cardboard cutout of Luke Skywalker
4............. A tennis ball
5............. A snowman
6............. A gangster
7............. My rat
8............ My tutu
9............. My lampshade
10............ My toe
11........... My booger
12............ A banana
13............ A fireman
14............ A stuffed gorilla
15............ A goat
16............ A pickle
17............ Your mom
18............ A towel
19............ A Smurf
20............ A baseball hat
21........... A ninja
22............ Chuck Norris
23............ A noodle
24............ A squirrel
25............ A football player
26............ My cottage cheese
27........... My pineapple
28............ An iPod
29............ A surfer
30............ A llama
31............ A homeless guy

Pick the color of shirt you are wearing:
White..... Because they were after me again.
Black....... Because my underwear were tight.
Pink........ Because nobody was looking.
Red........ Because the voices told me to.
Blue......... Because I'm cool and I do what I want.
Green..... Because I think I need some serious help.
Purple.... Because the world thinks I'm wonderful.
Gray....... Because Big Bird said to and he's my leader.
Yellow.... Because I was bribed by the president.
Orange.... Because my family thinks I'm stupid anyway.
Brown.... Because the clown was crying.
Other..... .. Because the aliens left their chip in me.
None...... Because I'm a ninja.

Saturday, December 1

dunlop thanksgiving 2007

Things we learned this Thanksgiving:
1. The Native Americans wore paper bag vests to the first Thanksgiving

2. Luke never wears pants

3. Turkey bowls and foosball can really bring brothers-in-law together

4. Grandma is a patient gal (especially since I'm putting a picture on here showing her when her hair isn't done!!)

5. If you drop your keys into a storm drain after seeing the movie "Enchanted," a fly fishing pole is the tool of choice.

6. There's a North Pole amusement park in Colorado Springs. It's exactly what you think it is, and yes--it's hilarious. And freezing cold.

7. If you let us take a picture of you with a Polly Pocket hair thing in your hair while we're playing Rummy Tile, I'm going to put it on our blog.

8. Extreme Karaoke is a huge hit with the Dunlops. HUGE.

9. Nephews will always be better at video games than you, especially if it's Guitar Hero.

10. We love our family. Seriously.

Thanks to Jess and Dan for hosting all of us at their new casa in Denver!

Monday, November 26

my little super hero capes

It's a bird! It's a plane! No, it's my mom's latest creations!

My mom has been making these capes for years, but now she's selling them on Etsy. Each cape is handmade, embroidered, and adorable. The capes fit safely around the chest (instead of tying around the neck) and they're machine-washable. They're sturdy and they've withstood the test of time in our family. Trust me--they're worth every penny.

(We put them on the grandkids one morning to take pics last week and they seriously wore them until bed time. In fact, Rylee went to bed wearing hers!)

Check out my mom's Etsy shop to learn more!

Sunday, November 18

one year down...

We have officially been Team Shafer for exactly one year.

Here's to an eternity more! Happy Anniversary, babe!!

Saturday, November 17

elf magic

I have 1 million things to do today, yet I took the time to make this. Trust me, it was worth it.

Season's greetings.

Thursday, November 15

a football man: a short video

Doug's team had a rough run last night, but he had a killer game the night before. See the video for evidence.

Monday, November 12

a football man

There's no doubt about it--Doug is a football man. He's not crazy-obsessed like a lot of guys, but if I let us get football sheets I'm sure he'd sleep better at night. So when the time comes around for Doug to play BYU intramural football, it's like it's Christmas every time there's a game. He talks about all day and cherishes every little football second. The only thing about this type of Christmas, though, is that there are referees and opposing teams that can ruin the whole thing for everybody. Other than that, the joy is the same for Doug.

Doug's team is in the tournament now, and they're doing better than any other team Doug has ever been on (at least he's ending his intramural career on a high note). Please enjoy some pics and footage from his last game where his team basically rocked the casbah. It was a good game, even for someone like me who's mostly confused about what's going on most of the time.

(above) Doug looks literally crazy about football while Justin flashes a gang sign

(below) Some of The Football Men

(below) Here Doug is the tiny tiny white dot playing quarterback. He ran it and dove into the endzone, but the ref claimed a kid pulled his flag before Doug made it there. We keyed that ref's car after the game.

Saturday, November 10

biodiesel, baby!

My bro-in-law Dan owns Alta Fuels, a company in Alamosa, Colorado that produces biodiesel. It's a crazy-cool business--they take agricultural products and turn them into fuel. Done and done. It's a way smart business.

On a side note, sometimes when I drive home from work I listen to National Public Radio(NPR) because I can't help but like it (shut up, Doug!!), and during my commute they play a news program called "All Things Considered" that I quite enjoy.

Well, it's with great pride that I recently figured out that Danny and his company were covered on this program last year and--gasp!--he was even quoted on the air!! I'm sure my sister told me about this months ago, but as a new NPR convert I didn't truly appreciate it.

So check out this link if you want to listen to the interview and support (a) me, (b) Dan, or (c) renewable, biodegradable, and non-toxic forms of energy fuel.

Wednesday, November 7

a week of firsts

I experienced two firsts this week:

1. My first random drug test at work. Nothing like preparing a urine sample with a lady patiently waiting right outside your stall. "Please don't flush the toilet before I inspect it, please." There's no way she gets paid enough.

2. My first time voting. I'm 25 years old, and I really have no good excuse. But I voted, baby, and I got the "I Voted!" sticker to prove it. I wore it all last night and I'm seriously considering wearing it to work today.

Monday, November 5

human tetris

Oh thank you, Japan, THANK YOU!!

Go to, select the video tab, and look for the Human Tetris video. You won't regret it!!

Saturday, November 3

halloween recap

October 30
21:00 hours
Meet at Heather and Chad's for a pumpkin carving extravaganza. We picked a difficult Jack-from-Nightmare-Before-Christmas pattern that took forever.

22:00 hours
While carving, we enjoy Chad's homemade rootbeer and his amazing Halo costume (both took my breath away for very good reasons).

23:00 hours
We finally finish our pumpkin (see first pic) and bring 'er home. We decide it's late so we might as well use that opportune time to hang our spooky spiderweb stuff we bought last year but never put up.

October 31
8:00 hours
Jackie heads to work where Halloween is bigger than any other holiday. I dressed up as Jackie Chan and greeted my co-workers' kids that come around trick-or-treating. I got about 3% of my normal workload done.
16:00 hours
Doug surprises me at work dressed like a cowboy. He steals candy from my desk.
20:00 hours
We head over to the Allers for an off-the-hook Halloween par-tay. We teamed up with the Allers and the Spurlocks to eat, played Guitar Hero, and pose for pictures.

Please enjoy:
Dwight K. Schrute & Jackie Chan
Cowboys from Brokeback Mountain (yes, seriously) and Cow
Cholo Thug & Paris Hilton

Friday, November 2


Madeline tagged me, and it's hard to turn a girl down.

She tagged me to post 6 facts or details about myself here. Then I might tag some more folks. Or something.

So I've chosen to share 6 things about my day:

1. I started by day by eating Marshmallow Maties (my husband has had quite the influence on me--I would have NEVER eaten sugar cereals before!!) and then I ate a donut at work. And then lots of candy.
2. I can usually tell by about 7:45 am or so if I am going to have an "ugly day" or not. Doug denies that said days exist ("Babe, you always look great!"... sweet, but inaccurate). So when my hair was being stupid and I committed to an outfit that didn't really work, it sealed the day as an "ugly day."
3. A magazine from an industry outside of ours said they'd do some editorial for one of our new products, and I realized maybe I can do my job even if no one ever trains me. Crazy!
4. I ate Top Ramen for dinner. On purpose! (It just sounded good... don't be a hater)
5. I watched Doug play a soccer game, and I wished I had smarter feet that were capable of such feats. (Pun not intended at first, but then left because it's a pretty good one.)
6. I called the Wal-Mart photo place, and when they put me on hold they were playing Christmas music. What the what!

So there you have it! My day summarized in six easy points.

Monday, October 29

happy halloween

Edible? Yes
Terrifying? Of course!

Thursday, October 25

A tale of two Jacks

My nephew Jack (my namesake) and I have a lot in common.

The other day my sister Stacey could hear Jack calling her name, but she couldn't find him.

Stacey searched all over and finally found him like this:

Trapped under a laundry basket.

Apparently he had tried to pull his baby blanket out of a laundry basket that was stacked above him. When he pulled on the blanket the basket came right on top of him, trapping him.

Yet he didn't cry, because it was all for the love of the blanky:

And when he was freed,

the blanket was there to comfort him.

I too feel trapped under a laundry basket some days. I go to work, feel burnt out by 9:15 am, and send out a cry for help, often in the form of eating Jolly Ranchers from the snack table. Eventually I turn to my coworkers for help, but all they can offer is sympathy because they feel exactly the same. Yet I go on. And do you know why? Not for the love of a blanky, per se, but for something slightly different: the love of the clean desk*.

I know that if I work and work, I can eventually clean off my desk of all the "to do" stuff. And once that's all gone, I get to do an internal high five before it gets piled up again with a whole new load of crap I need to do. And that internal high five really gets me through the day.

*Other equally important answers would have been:
…for something bulkier: the love of a Doug Shafer
…for something I can't explain: the love of editing and writing
…for something I can't take with me when I die: the love of money (note: this is also the root of all evil)

But Jack and I really do have quite the connection. Gotta love that darling little boy.

(If you think I stole these pics from Stacey's blog today, you're right.)

Monday, October 22

pumpkin time

Don't be scared, but we carved some pretty freaky pumpkins last night with our friends Emily and Logan:

Doug, Em, and Logan used patterns, so their pumpkins turned out amazing (Doug=pirate ship, Emily=Skeleton Face, Logan=Spider). Mine on the other hand was free-style carved out of an adorable acorn squash my other friend Emily gave me. She gave it to us to cook, but a last minute decision led me to hack it up instead. (Sorry Emily! I'll probably end up replacing it because it smelled so good when the candle started cooking it. Curses...)

And for all you PA people out there, you might recognize this Emily as the former Emily Hansen of D-town. They moved into our ward earlier this year and I've been loving it ever since. You'll also notice Emily's become a lot more violent than she used to be: