Sunday, March 13, 2011

Life in a Brighthouse: Moving out of the Dark Ages

In the past we had always taken pride in our lack of technology. We rarely watched our 400lb TV, and when television went digital, we just stopped watching all together. Unfortunately, when we were moving, Jeff "accidentally" dropped our beast of a TV and we finally felt justified in replacing it. We also got cable.

All my life, I've never had cable. I can't believe that I have lived my life up until now without the food network! I don't remember what I used to do on Sunday nights before they became completely devoted to Iron Chef America, Chopped, and Worst Cooks in America. I can't imagine an evening without Jeff standing behind me in the kitchen commentating while I cook dinner.

Cable has changed my life! I can't believe how much time I used to waste exercising and socializing. All that time, I could have been watching Star Trek reruns or catching up on Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman. (On a sidenote, isn't Sully awesome? I love him!)

I feel so enlightened. Before cable, I never knew how a curling stone is made, that a dead pig can be substituted for a human body in most experiments, that a Toyota Hilux truck is indestructible, that Vulcans die from emotional breakdowns, or that Haricot Vert is just a fancy French term for green beans.

Thank you, Brighthouse Networks! I don't know how I ever lived without you!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

2/2 Dads Agree! I'm Racktaculous!

It's been a while since I last blogged, so I'm easing back in with a shorter post. During my hiatus, I acquired three new followers! Welcome! Hope you enjoy...

It all started when we were loading the car for a fishing trip. My dad finished attaching the bunji cords to the roof of my Explorer and proudly proclaimed, "Becky, you may have an old car, but you sure have a nice rack."

Fast forward a few weeks. I'm playing pool with my father-in-law and he's kicking my butt, as usual. I finally get ahead of him only to scratch on the eight ball. I start collecting balls from the pocket, and Gary exclaims, "Becky, you may not be much of a pool player, but you sure do have a nice rack!"

They only wish their racks were as nice as mine!

Maybe I should invite my grandpa over for a lamb dinner. If I make it yummy enough, I could be 3 for 3!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Real Estate Euphemisms Finally Decoded

The real estate business has its own language. I was not aware of this when Jeff and I set out on our quest to find the perfect home. In an attempt to spare my readers (all 7 of them) some grief and confusion should they decide to buy a house, here are a few of the real estate euphemisms I have decoded thus far:

1. sparkling pool = nasty green hole in the ground
2. cute/quaint/cozy = hobbit sized
3. has tons of potential = needs everything replaced but the foundation
4. short sale = long drawn out process
5. foreclosure = smells like death
6. mature landscaping = bring along your industrial weed whacker
7. recently remodeled = someone has fixed something since 1985
8. full of character = green linoleum, shag carpet and 1970s paisley wallpaper
9. up and coming neighborhood = ghetto
10. bank owned = dead landscaping, broken windows
11. new paint and carpet = previously occupied by a smoker with fifteen cats
12. custom/unique = bizarre (ie: a toilet in the kitchen or floor plan designed by Dr. Seuss)
13. 1/2 bath = a closet with a toilet in it
14. easy access = backs up to a freeway
15. galley kitchen = a hallway lined in cabinets
16. single owner home = grandma died here
17. low maintenance landscaping = concrete
18. close to = you can see it from your bedroom window
19. charming = so adorable, you wont even notice the crack in the foundation
20. well maintained = nothing has been updated

I'm sure there are more that I have yet to learn. Feel free to add to my list!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Jeff and Becky, the Early Years

At the request of a some friends and family, here are few entertaining stories from the earlier years of our marriage.
1. Not Your Mama's Pancakes
We had just returned form our honeymoon. Jeff was trying to adjust to living in a new apartment far away from the familiarity and comfort of his childhood home in Shafter. In an effort to be "a good wife", I decided to make my new husband pancakes in the morning before he left for work. Jeff had always bragged about his mom's cooking, so I called her and got her recipe for pancakes. They would be perfect, just like mom's!

After waking up super early and following Martha's pancake recipe to the T, I announced to Jeff that his pancakes were ready. I sat in anticipation as he took the first bite, awaiting the praise and validation I so desperately needed as a new and inexperienced wife. But instead of making yummy noises, Jeff was reaching for his napkin and spitting out his food.
"Something is very wrong with these!"
I was hurt and indignant.

"That's impossible. Just because they don't taste EXACTLY like your mother's pancakes, you wont eat them? Why don't you just go back home to you mommy then!"
Jeff was mortified. He hadn't anticipated that I would be so insecure about my cooking. I couldn't help it. His mother was practically Betty Crocker. How could I compete with that? I sat there and made him eat every bite of those pancakes. He was going to learn to like my cooking!
It wasn't until much later that I noticed the label on the PAM cooking spray I had used to make breakfast.

2. Jeff's Spanish Name

As you probably know, many names are spelled and pronounced differently in Spanish than they are in English. Matthew is "Mateo" in Spanish. George is "Jorge" (Horhay). When I asked Jeff if his name had a different pronunciation in Spanish, he replied without hesitation "Jefe" (Heffay). For months after that, I thought it was cute to call Jeff by his "Spanish name", and he seemed to love it. He would even insist on it sometimes.

Me: "Jeff, will you take out the trash?"

Jeff: "Only if you call me by my Spanish name"

Me: "Jefe, please empty the trash."

One day I found out what Jefe REALLY meant. I made Jeff eat more garlic pancakes as punishment.

Jefe: chief; boss

Monday, July 19, 2010

TBN "Truely Bizarre Network"

Back to blogging after a brief hiatus. Not long ago, Jeff and I randomly paid a visit to the TBN (Trinity Broadcasting Network) Studios in Costa Mesa, CA. At first we just drove by and couldn't help but notice the elaborate, stately building nestled between the South Coast Plaza and the 405 freeway. "Hey, its open to the public, babe. Let's go!" insisted my incredibly hot husband. Who could say no to such a beautiful man? And besides, I was a little curious myself. What kind of things did they sell in the "Gold, Frankincense, and Myrrh Gift Shop"? We had to find out.

We were greeted just inside the gate by Jesus, who also starred as King Lionidas in the movie "300".

"Tonight! We dine in Hell!"

We walked around the gardens.

Anyone else feel like all the nativity characters should be holding wads of cash and winking?

Then we went into the building, which put the white marble columns and sparkling fountains in the garden to shame.

Please note Willy Wonka's great glass elevator

Apparently if you make it past Warrior Jesus at the gate, you then have to face the giant marble angel assassin in the foyer. Yikes! How many orphans had to starve so they could install that little beauty? Honestly, I don't know if I was more frightened by the menacing statues or the Sandi Patty album they were playing when we walked in.

Jesus' living room?

Jesus' gold plated piano?

Finally, a Jesus who doesn't want to kill me!

Unfortunately, Paul and Jan Crouch were nowhere to be seen. We were genuinely dissappointed. I was hoping for some fashion/makeup advice.

Jim Henson's inspiration for Miss Piggy?

Oh well. Maybe next time.

Poor Jesus. I'm pretty sure this wasn't what he had in mind when he came to Earth and died. It was highly entertaining though. If you're ever in Orange County, you should stop and check it out. I leave you now with one of my favorite youtube parodies. Enjoy!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Summer Update

Summer is leering. I'm well into my capris and tees and can't shake the looming inevitability of shorts/swim suit season. Jeff lives for pool parties and fun in the sun, and why shouldn't he? He's six feet, two inches of lean, sun-tannable man candy. I, however, long for a chilly winter night, my frighteningly pale love handles concealed comfortably beneath the thick elastic waist band of my favorite green sweatpants. Summer isn't all bad I suppose. I do look forward to long days, BBQs, and vacations. We have quite a bit planned for the next couple months. This is (dun dun dun) The Summer Update!

I was fortunate enough to score a summer position with the high school district. Jeff, however, was not, so he is spending his days cleaning and doing laundry while I go off to work. I'm still at Ridgeview in the special ed department. For the next five weeks, I'm working with a blind student in his algebra 1 class. It's challenging, but I couldn't have asked for a better kid to work with.

Next weekend, we're headed up north to Santa Clara for our niece, Josie's, 7th birthday party.

Its a princess party (isn't she an angel?), and my mother-in-law just put the finishing touches on my super-awesome custom-made fairy costume. Pictures soon to follow.

In early July, our nephew, Jason, will be visiting which means we'll be spending lots of extra time at the river with Lucy (our black lab).

Towards end of July, we're taking off for a week to Atlanta, Georgia for DCI (Drum Corp International) regionals (+500 nerd points). We'll also be visiting some of Jeff's southern family members. This is my first trip ever to the south. I'm super excited, and seriously hoping the humidity is not as bad as everyone says it is.

You have now been officially updated. Have a great summer, don't forget to use sunscreen, and ladies, if you see my gorgeous husband lounging shirtless by the pool sipping a Mountain Dew, avert your eyes. That sexy beast is MINE!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Mourning Cloak Ranch: A Phlog

My mom and I decided to visit Mourning Cloak Ranch in Tehachapi. Once a meticulously maintained botanical paradise, it has since changed hands multiple times, and with the decline of the economy, fallen into disrepair. Still, the evidence of the garden's former glory is still there, albeit somewhat hidden, in the overgrown walking paths beneath the towering oak trees.
I was horribly allergic to everything there, including our magnificent tour guide, Max, the Great Pyrenees. He seemed like more if a lion than a dog.

Here are the pictures from our trip. Enjoy!