Saturday, September 29


Do you know what's happening in this picture?

I'll tell you: winter. This is winter in action. Those clouds are going to disappear and reveal snow on the mountains. Right by our house. In September. I just don't know what to say about it...

But I do know we haven't posted in a while. I shall share some reasons why:
1. I spent most of last week in Vegas for a trade show for work. What happened in Vegas shall stay in Vegas, except for the weightgain caused by the gigantic meals we ate every day and night.
2. Doug went to an interview at Case Western in Cleveland. He felt way comfortable and he loved the school. He has two more interviews this month, and if anything schools won't let us know anything officially until December 1.
3. School is super busy and physics is ruining Doug's mortal life (or at least for the next few months of mortality). He is enjoying the tooth carving class I told you about (see the pic). He starts with a waxy material and carves it into a tooth. Yes, it is hilarious.
4. I've started tutoring a man twice a week named Luis through an adult literacy program at our library. He's from Peru and he has an engineering business here. He's extremely educated so his Spanish literacy is perfect, but we're working on his English literacy. He speaks pretty well but he needs to be able to write for his business and communicate with clients better. This week we're going to be working on writing engineering concepts clearly in English and preparing his lesson for his High Priest's Quorum. He's a stud.
5. We're tired.

And that about covers it for the excuse list.

In other news, our friends Sarah and Dave had their little guy (see their blog). 10 pounds 3 ounces! He's having a rough time, though, so he's been up at Primary Children's Hospital all this week. We got to meet him, and trust us--he is cute to the max. He's also the biggest newborn I've ever encountered. :)

We also had four family birthdays this week: Lexi, Tyler, Mason, and Whitney. Happy birthday to one and all.

Man, is that it? I feel like I have to catch you up on everything. Because you are all on the edges of your seats I'm sure. So there. Done and done.

Saturday, September 15

priceless: a trip to the ER

Intramural Football Team Fee: $30.00
Sign saying "Go Doug!" I used to embarrass him: $0.10
Strip of gauze: $0.20
Doug's phone call to his parents for counsel: $0.05
Trip to the ER: $300.00 (at least)
The chance to see your husband's eyebrow stitched up?: PRICELESS

It all started innocently enough. Doug had an intramural football game last night at 8 pm, the weather was perfect, I had friends to chat with, and his team was kicking butt. All was well.

But then there was about 20 seconds left in the game and Doug came running over to the ref. And he was bleeding above his eye. Crap. He was the QB (that's football lingo... hope you enjoy it) and a kid tried to block him and his elbow came down on Doug's face. Turns out kid's elbow + Doug's eyebrow = gaping cut. Both the refs said, "Yeah, that's going to need stitches." His teammates tried to convince us we could save a couple hundred dollars if we used super glue and a butterfly bandage. While I appreciated their expertise, it was a deep cut and this is my husband's face. Let's do it right.

So 3 hours, 6 stitches, and 1 really nice doctor later, Doug was feeling pretty good as we left the hospital. The doctor did a great job and luckily it's semi-hidden in his eyebrow. We also made a lot of friends in the ER, and apparently he was the third eye laceration that night (one guy we talked to scratched his eye when a tree branch got him because he was riding his 4-wheeler in the dark--yikes).

Us getting home some time after midnight. The nurse gooped ointment gooped onto the wound.

And a close up this morning without the goop.

Doug is actually pretty excited about the "glory wound." He had a great game and he was quite pleased. And then as we were falling asleep last night he suddenly said to me, "Hey, that should have been a penalty. We could have gotten an automatic first down."

Gotta love that kid.

Thursday, September 13

what I learned from "The Day After Tomorrow"

I'll be the first to admit I'm no movie expert. I enjoy movies, I own several, and my husband can quote any/every movie he's ever seen, but I still don't think I'm qualified to be, say, a movie critic. But if there's ever been a time when I felt I could do it, it was the other night whilst we watched one of the worst movies of my mortal existence:

"The Day After Tomorrow"

Perhaps many of you have endured the same movie and you could have warned us about it, but alas it came out when Doug and I were on our missions so we were uninformed. I think it's really truly safe to say it's a terrible movie. The special effects were pretty cool, but I'm pretty sure a fifth grader wrote the script. And this was no Doogie Howser genius fifth grader--this was a cheesy, inconsistent one. But I have to admit I learned a thing or two while watching the movie, so please allow me to share with you a list I will call

"What I learned from 'The Day After Tomorrow'"

1. Bilbo Baggins has actually been in other movies.
2. The NYC public library is the best place to go in the case of emergencies. Be prepared to burn books.
3. You can sneak political messages into movies really easily, just like in "Happy Feet."
4. I hate it when they do it, though.
5. If the earth ever starts to freeze over, you better watch out for wolves. The ones from the Central Park Zoo are the WORST.
6. The main girl from Phantom of the Opera will NOT break out into song during the movie, even though you tell Doug she will again and again.
7. Random Russian ships that float into the city will not have any dead frozen bodies on it, but it will have penicillin. And wolves.
8. All Scottish people do is drink Scotch and watch soccer. And track storms while doing other said activities.
9. You will be able to find a lot of spare winter clothing in the NYC public library. In fact, there will be enough for hundreds of people to gear up.
9. Dennis Quaid is always right. He saw the storm coming, and we didn't listen.
10. News reporters in LA will stand right in front of a tornado again and again for a good story.
11. If you get caught "fooling around" and we haven't known you for long in the movie, you're going to be killed by a tornado.
12. Mexico will NOT open it's borders for us when the United States freezes until we say we're sorry and forgive all immigrant debt.
13. All Vice Presidents are idiots.
14. You can sustain a group of people on a few bags of Doritos for DAYS. You can also sustain a dog on M&Ms.
15. The homeless man was also right.
16. The ice in Antarctica will break RIGHT through Dennis Quaid's camp even though it's the only thing in the area for hundreds of miles.
17. If you tell a girl you joined a club to be closer to her, she will immediately start making out with you.
18. Storms and waves of water move really slowly when a main character is running, but really fast when just normal dumb people are running.
19. People fly in helicopters around tornados in California and stay alive long enough to see the Hollywood sign disappear. Then they die.
20. You can predict every scene of a bad movie, except for the girl getting her leg amputated and breaking into song. There you will be wrong.

Saturday, September 8

teeth tools

Doug's taking a teeth carving class this semester, leading to his first purchase of dental-looking tools.

Go Doug go!

(Apparently they make teeth. Or something.)

Tuesday, September 4

crazy eights

alicia tagged me. probably because she knows i'm a sucker for such shenanigans.

so, in no particular order...

8 Things I'm Passionate About
1. Adult literacy
2. Washing my face at night
3. The Gospel
4. Water conservation
5. Jeans with pockets on the butt
6. Listening to people (and I wish I was better at it)
7. Making sure Doug knows I love him
8. Writing

8 Things I want to do before I die
1. Have kids. Be a mom. The whole she-bang.
2. Meet the prophet
3. Swim in clear blue ocean water
4. Visit Italy
5. Do humanitarian work with Doug somewhere
6. Learn to sew. And not hate it.
7. Write a column
8. Get Doug to like the East Coast :)

8 Things I say often
1. "If you think___, then you're wrong."
2. "If you think___, then you're right."
3. "I heart that."
4. "Huh."
5. "Let's get real."
6. "I bet"
7. "___rocks my world."
8. "Love your face", "Miss your face", and so on

8 Books I've recently read
1. "What's eating Gilbert Grape?" by Peter Hedges
2. "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows" by JK Rowling
3. "Small and Simple Things" by Marjorie Pay Hinckley
4. "Twilight" by Stephanie Meyer
5. "For One More Day" by Mitch Albom
6. "The Old Man and the Sea" by Ernest Hemingway
7. "Eats, Shoots & Leaves" by Lynne Truss
8. "Deep Thoughts" and "Deeper Thoughts" by Jack Handey

8 Songs I Could Listen to Over and Over
1. "The Scientist" by Cold Play
2. "Sweet Baby James" by James Taylor
3. "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For" by U2
4. "This Is the Christ" sung by my mission president (he's an opera singer. it rocks.)
5. "The Lighthouse's Tale" by Nickelcreek
6. "Hallelujah" by Jeff Buckley
7. "I Will Follow You Into the Dark" by Death Cab for Cutie
8. "Landslide" as sung by the Dixie Chicks. Shut up.

8 Things that Attract Me to My Best Friends
1. First thing always: sense of humor
2. Non-jerklike tendencies
3. Trustworthy
4. Witty
5. Not overly materialistic
6. Has characteristics I'd like to have
7. A willingness to loan me money
8. Interested in and supportive of pranks

8 Things I've learned in the last year
1. Doug is an even better fit for me than I ever dreamed.
2. Miracles happen every day.
3. I just don't like yogurt.
4. Happiness is a decision.
5. God is very very kind.
6. Things work out. They always do.
7. "Chariots of Fire" isn't about football. For some reason I always thought it was.
8. I need my family. Big time.

8 People that I think should do "8"
1. Stacey
2. Jessica
3. Jenn
4. Cydney
5. Kadi
6. Whitney
7. Doughty
8. Lindy
8a. Suz
8b. Anna
8c... Oh man, let's get real: I think everybody should do it!

Sunday, September 2

for sale

If anyone is in the market to buy a home in West Greenwich, Rhode Island, we've got a gem for you. The family room is perfect for Sunday naps, and the bedrooms all have great views. The kitchen is chock full of counterspace, it's ideal for opening your mission call, and the water gets hot in .5 seconds (note: this is not always good). The backyard works well for a Survivor/Amazing Race type of game (see Christmas 2006), you can catch frogs in the ditch across the street, and the yard includes wild turkeys and a traditional colonial rock wall. The home is extremely close to the beach (and RI beaches rock. seriously.) and just minutes from RI's only truck station. You just can't go wrong.

So my parents are moving. As a Dunlop, this really isn’t coming as a surprise. If there’s one thing Dunlops do, it’s move. And after 7 years in Rhode Island, it’s been no secret mom and dad are ready to get out of there. I think what did come as a surprise, however, is where they’re moving to:

Alabama. Birmingham, Alabama.

Yes, folks, they’re going to Alabama with banjos on their knees.

We lived in Alabama from ’85 to ’89, if my memory serves me right. It was there I attended my Baptist preschool, broke my nose in the backyard, and spent the night in the basement with my family during a tornado warning. Good memories.

My mom, however, associates Alabama with the first place she ever lived that she really truly disliked. Her own personal hell, if you will. She had lived in Utah for most of her life, and the culture shock when we moved to Alabama was a doozy.

But this time around, they’ve committed to having great attitudes and they seem to be looking forward to the change. I’m excited for them—my dad has a new job that seems to be making him happier already. I love that.

I’m going to miss RI a ton, though.

So just let me know if you're interested in the home. It's awesome. Trust me.


In honor of Labor Day, here are some workisms I've experienced lately:

- My department had a training one day on InDesign, and since
we're all at different levels one of my coworkers doing the training
brought Play-Doh for each of us. I made a horse.

- I was writing an email to someone that knows me as Jackie Dunlop, so I signed (and sent—dangit!) it "Jackie Shafer (formally Dunlop)". Apparently I only use Dunlop at the most formal times. Communications specialist/writer/editor... as if!

- I was reading through a contract we signed with a company, and part
of it was discussing what we are allowed to do once they grant us
rights to use their company logo or name or something. According to
the contract, we can use it now with any known media
and any sort of media known or created in the future "throughout the
universe, in perpetuity." And I add, from "henceforth and forever, and
ever, and ever." Nothing like involving the whole universe in a contract!