From Nudist to Navajo

Last Thursday my mother accepted a job offer from Johns Hopkins University to be a pediatric research nurse on a Apache/Navajo Indian reservation in Navajo, New Mexico. Plan A was: drive out tonight and arrive in New Mexico sometime Wednesday. In true Janice, (that's my mother's name and she hates it) fashion, she didn't leave as planned. Plan B: she will begin the journey west tomorrow. We'll see if this actually happens.
She also received a job offer to teach LPNs at a small community college in St Petersburg, FL today. I patiently reminded her that she hates Florida and would prefer to work with Navajo babies instead of young women who can actually talk back to her in a language she can understand.
The JH position is perfect, almost too good to be true. They are furnishing her with a house ten minutes from the reservation. She will be living in a town; population 900. Needless to say, there is not much to do out there but that's perfect for my Mom because all she does is read anyway.
My Mom has always loved Native American cultures. When we were kids she would buy us books about Native Americans or sit with us on the couch and flip through National Geographics, always admiring the different regalia worn by tribal dancers or the pinwheel hairstyles of young Hopi women. I inherited her love of and fascination for their cultures. This is one reason I minored in Native American Studies at BYU and took every opportunity to visit the Navajo/Hopi reservation in Arizona.
Besides, anything beats living in a nudist colony, right? Seven weeks ago I traveled to "Paradise" to visit my Mom and I couldn't even handle five days. Old geezers with schlongs hanging to their knees is not my idea of "paradise." My mom, although beautiful, would never participate and thus, never truly fit in. I'm not sure a 50 year old sassy blonde will fit in among Navajo and Apache women but anything beats naked old perverts.
Moving to New Mexico would mean, Amber, could visit for Thanksgiving and feast on Navajo tacos and fry bread instead of the traditional turkey and dressing menu we repeat at Christmas. Not that I'm crazy about babies, but I would love to see all the Navajo and Apache babies. There is something about their dark hair and eyes that melts my heart.
In crazy Mom talk, she said she was thinking about adopting one, which I will care for during visits. I asked her who would care for the unfortunate child when I wasn't "visiting." It was obvious by her silence she had not thought this far ahead. If the "babe" resembles the man in the above photo I'll "baby" sit anytime.
So, congratulations to my mother, one of the best RNs ever, embarking on an adventure that will take her from nudist to Navajo (New Mexico, that is).

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Following Rae's Lead

Your Career Personality: Idealistic, Service-Oriented, and Future-Oriented

Your Ideal Careers:

Alternative health practitioner


Environmental lawyer


Magazine editor

Museum curator



Photo journalist


The Quick and Dirty Career Test

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How did I miss this?

This weekend BG and I discovered Arrested Development with the help of our dear friend Gwen! All I can say is--How in the world didn't I know about this show sooner?

I'm not great at keeping up on television trends in normal hours. Now if there was a change in the format of Talking Sex with Sue Johnson--look out my friends! I'd be running a campaign. So, really I'm not surprised that I missed it. I just feel denied the opportunity of seeing this amazing feat of comedy when the other 7 fans were watching it.

If you haven't seen the show and you enjoy dark, smart humor you MUST see it. We watched *mumbled* episodes the other night and it still wasn't enough!

End rave here.

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BG/IB Music Selections

In our quest to bring you the hottest and funnest music allow me to introduce OK GO.

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A Perfect Evening

Although Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth was released months ago, Jerry and I were not able to see it until last night. It was well worth the wait. It was so much fun discussing the film's contents afterwards because Jerry is so passionate about the environment.
In the film, Al Gore basically gives a slide show presentation. He has been giving this presentation for over twenty years. My uncle saw this presentation in the '80's while working at EPA's regional office in San Francisco. It inspired him to make changes then that have impacted his actions since.
Jerry crossed paths with Al Gore again a decade later. Jerry was living in Arlington with my Aunt Nancy and was invited to the VP's home for a reception. Someone snapped a photo of Jerry with VP Gore during the party, which he proudly displays in his living room today. I used to look at the photo daily when I lived with him. Seeing it inspired me to do something more; to create positive change in my own profession.
I decided to post the movie trailer below for those interested in seeing the film. It is a MUST SEE for everyone. Exiting the theatre I couldn't imagine how any intelligent individual could deny the existence of global warming when the scientific evidence is so obvious.
After An Inconvenient Truth, Jerry and I went to Zaytinya's for a late dinner. Zaytinya's is a tapais restaurant, directly across from MLK library, that serves mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisine. Like An Inconvenient Truth, its a MUST. The decor, the energy, the food, was fantastic.
While a student at BYU, the closest relatives I had were over two-thousand miles away. Its so nice having a family member minutes away. I can discuss things with him that I can't with anyone else because he knows and understands in ways no one else can. I respect his opinion and regard his advice as much, and sometimes, more, than my own father.
At the end of the evening, Jerry asked, "So, Amber. Are you ready to save the world?" I can't help but wonder if that's a question he asks himself everyday. He doesn't know but he has definitely saved mine a few times. Thanks Jerry for a perfect evening.

An Inconvenient Truth - Trailer

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There was a sign tonight in the third row which read, "T-Shirt: $40, Tickets: $130, Dr. E. Live! PRICELESS!!!!" and that's exactly how I feel.

I don't know to describe properly the effect that this woman has on me. It's amazing. Tonight BG and I sat in the 14th row of constitution hall, near the center of the venue. It's an awesome venue to begin but these seats were phenom! At 8 Melissa came out and she finally left the stage at 11. She sang everything I wanted to hear--well, let's face it. She could start a concert and sing straight through the albums and I'd still not have enough of her! But tonight was fantastic! I heard Chrome Plate Heart for the first time live. And Bring Me Some Water. And all the hits were there.

And she's so beautiful. When she sings she's intense and alluring in a way that I've never seen before or since. Standing on the stage she's at ease and the audience gets to see reflections of her deepest being. She's sexy. She's iconic. Mostly, she's totally herself. Without apology or dilution. And that inspires me.

The encore nearly did me in. She sang Like The Way I Do and All The Way To Heaven. I nearly cried.

It's not just a concert. It's more like therapy. The energy of the crowd is positive. Melissa shares great messages. The music wraps around your soul in a comforting embrace. It's, as a whole, the most fantastic way to spend an evening. I was telling BG that, to me, Melissa feels like an old friend. She's been there in so many private moments of despair and exaltation that I can't regard her as anything less. And thus, I am a fan in the true sense of the "fanatic."

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Mormonism v. Melissasism

I just realized that I'm spending more time getting ready for the concert tonight than I do getting ready for Church.

And, ironically, I've shaved my legs for tonight because I didn't on Saturday.

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There are very few bands that inspire me to the fervor of tattoo but Breaking Benjamin does. I love their logo, music, members and...well...everything. The new song is brilliant.

And the new album is only $10 at Target until the end of the week. Buy, people, buy!

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"You Owe Me"

Has anyone ever said this to you? How does it make you feel? Honestly this is one phrase that makes me "mad as hell."
Upon moving from 2035 F to 2147 F our Program inherited a new mailman. At the previous address our mail person was a woman. Whenever she would come into the office we would for a few minutes before she gathered our mail. During Christmas I even bought a sweet potato pie from her. No big deal, right?
My behavior towards our current mail carrier is not any different. I decided, even though he is a man, I would still be friendly. Knowing men can often confuse kindness with interest, I tried to limit conversation to safe topics, i.e., food, sports, etc. Despite all my precautions, I have won the affection of our mail carrier, whose name I don't even remember.
Every time he comes into the office he confides that "my stop" is his favorite and he "always saves the best for last." Whatever that means. At first I believed the flirtation was harmless but this week he has tried to ask me out twice. Not good.
Then yesterday evening this comes out of his mouth, "I can't believe you're leaving. You have just ruined my day. We should go to lunch sometime. YOU OWE ME."
I am sure, if asked, he would probably not remember having uttered such a blasphemous oath. Despite any protestation he could offer, the truth remains. A man told me I owed him and sadly he is not the first to say this. What makes men or anyone, for that matter, say such a thing? I owe my parents everything and they have never said that. OK. My mom may have alluded that I owe her something for the hours of hard labor she endured to bring me into this world but my dad has never even implied such a thing. Yet, a man, whose name I don't even remember, tells me I owe him?!
No matter what people do for me I shouldn't owe them anything. People are kind and giving because they choose to be. I don't do things for the sake of getting something in return. I give because I want to. My actions are motivated by love or respect, sometimes both. There is no alterior motive driving my actions. So, why, if someone does something kind for me, should I owe them something? I have never understood that mentality. Perhaps someone could explain it to me.

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Myth, Memory & the Making of the American Landscape

The fifth sentance of page 123 in Shackel's Myth, Memory and the Making of the American Landscape reads, "Landscape freezing not only affects the decision making of the professionals involved in the management of the site, but also influences how they interepret the history of the site to the public.
The subsequent three lines state, "After the Battle of Antietam, the single bloodiest day of the Civil War, more than twenty-three thousand soldiers were dead, wounded, or missing. The battle began at dawn on September 17, 1862, and by the next day Confederate General Robert E. Lee withdrew his army back over the Potomac. Many historians see the Battle of Antietam as a major turning point in the war."
I am not tagging anyone. Sorry for breaking the blog chain but I don't know anyone outside our circle that blogs. Love you all.

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A Night out with Mama Harbour

Tonight Mom and I, on the spur of the moment, decided to go to the ballet. It was (suprisingly to me) pretty good. The first arrangment was to Samba music--which I love. The last arrangement featured death (in a scarlet and amazing dress) dancing to bluegrass. The arrangment in the middle had nonsensical music that made it hard for me to enjoy.

On the whole, a fantastic evening with my Mom. And further evidence that I am becoming her.

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Thought it might be better to post the video so you can get a better idea of why I love this song sooo much. The DC played it last night as their first encore song. It made the night totally worth it.

Dixie Chicks - Traveling Soldier

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Travelin' Soldier

Tonight I am going to see the Dixie Chicks in concert at the Verizon Center with some friends from Museum Studies. I don't listen to the Dixie "Hicks" very often because their songs resurrect a few bittersweet memories I would prefer to leave buried. Lisa, my last roommate at BYU, and I used to go swimming every night at the University pool. During our travels we always listened to the Dixie Chicks. One of the songs we kept on repeat was Travelin' Soldier. For those who are unfamiliar with this song I have included the lyrics below. I am not sure why I love this song so much but I cry every time I hear it. Tonight I will get to hear it live. This is one of the reasons I am dropping $63 to see a band perform who I haven't even purchased a cd for.
The other reason I agreed to go, is Sara. Sara Devine, is a lady in the Museum Studies Program I met in a Longstreth class. An immediate bond developed when we discovered we both moved to DC from Atlanta and she is from Charleston, SC.
During my archaeology field school Sara's husband, Adam, asked me if I would go with his wife to the Dixie Chicks concert. Being a Republican, Adam refuses to support the Dixie Chicks in any way. Seeing how badly Sara wanted to go, I said sure. Who knows? Perhaps I will have a husband one day who will refuse to go places with me forcing me to rely on single, female friends as backup. Men. I just don't understand them.
I'm a little sad because this will be a solo mission for BG. Steph and I have become so close it seems weird making any memories without her. Thanks goodness for Melissa. Anyway, I plan on taking lots of pics to share. Wish me luck tonight.

Travelin' Soldier

Two days past eighteen
He was waiting for the bus in his army green
Sat down in a booth in a cafe there
Gave his order to a girl with a bow in her hair
He's a little shy so she gives him a smile
And he said would you mind sittin' down for a while
And talking to me,I'm feeling a little low
She said I'm off in an hour and I know where we can go

So they went down and they sat on the pier
He said I bet you got a boyfriend but I don't care
I got no one to send a letter to
Would you mind if I sent one back here to you

I cried..Never gonna hold the hand of another guy
Too young for him they told her
Waitin' for the love of a travelin' soldier
Our love will never end
Waitin' for the soldier to come back again
Never more to be alone when the letter said
A soldier's coming home

So the letters came from an army camp
In California then Vietnam
And he told her of his heart
It might be love and all of the things he was so scared of
He said when it's getting kinda rough over hereI think of that day sittin' down at the pier
And I close my eyes and see your pretty smile
Don't worry but I won't be able to write for awhile


One Friday night at a football gameThe Lord's Prayer said and the Anthem sang
A man said folks would you bow your heads
For a list of local Vietnam dead
Crying all alone under the stands
Was a piccolo player in the marching band
And one name read and nobody really cared
But a pretty little girl with a bow in her hair



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What is your salad dressing of choice?
Currently Stephanie's Vidalia Onion dressing which is really weird because I HATE onions

What is your favorite fast food restaurant?
I never thought I would say this but, for now, its Potbelly's.

What is your favorite sit down restaurant?
Loriel Plaza in Dupont.

On average, what size tip do you leave at a restaurant?
I usually leave whatever Stephanie suggests

What food could you eat every day for two weeks and not get sick of?

Name three foods you detest above all others.
I hate a-foods. Artichokes, anchovies, avacados, and asparagus. Apples are good though.

What is your favorite dish to order in a Chinese restaurant?
Cashew Chicken. I love anything with nuts!!

What are your pizza toppings of choice? Broccoli, mushrooms and green pepper

What do you like to put on your toast?
my Grandma Kidd's homemade applebutter. Total comfort food

What is your favorite type of gum? Original Trident (blue pack)

Number of contacts in your cell phone?
Don't have time to count right now but its not 163 You have to be pretty special to make it in my cell phone :)

Number of contacts in your e-mail address book?
I have no idea I know its over 200 for the Program but my personal maybe 20 max

What is your wallpaper on your computer? George on the sailboat in Boston is the screensaver on my laptop.

What is your screensaver on your computer? "Patience is the key to success" My daddy tells me that all the time

Are there naked pictures saved on your computer? Naked photos? Maybe. Maybe not. :)

How many land line phones do you have in your house? Zero

How many televisions are in your house? Zero

What kitchen appliance do you use the most? Ice maker

What is the format of the radio station you listen to the most? 107.3 FM

What do you consider to be your best physical attribute? My hair or eyes

Are you right handed or left handed? Right but I can sign with both hands

Do you like your smile? Teeth... no. Smile... sure.

Have you ever had anything removed from your body? Wisdom Teeth

Would you like to? Yep.

Do you prefer to read when you go to the bathroom?

Which of your five senses do you think is keenest?
That's a tough one.

When was the last time you had a cavity?
Long time ago.

What is the heaviest item you lift regularly?

Have you ever been knocked unconscious? No but I used to try to make myself pass out. Never worked

If it were possible, would you want to know the day you were going to die?
Never. Goonies never say die.

If you could change your first name, what would you change it to?
I really like my name. I would never want to change it. Its has a cool meaning.

How do you express your artistic side?
Depends on my mood

What color do you think you look best in?

How long do you think you could last in a medium security prison? I never want to find out.

Have you ever swallowed a non-food item by mistake?
motor oil

If we weren't bound by society's conventions, do you have a relative you would make a pass at?
This is gross but everyone knows how much I love Jerry anyway. I would make a pass at my Uncle.

How often do you go to church?
Every single Sunday

Have you ever saved someone's life? I don't think so

Has someone ever saved yours? Many times

Would you walk naked for a half mile down a public street for $100,000? Nope

Would you kiss a member of the same sex for $100? On the cheek? Sure

Would you allow one of your little fingers to be cut off for $200,000?
My grandma always wanted me to be a hand model. I wouldn't want to spoil her dream.

Would you never blog again for $50,000? Perhaps

Would you pose naked in a magazine for $250,000?
Totally naked? I think I would do topless but as small as I am no one would pay me to do that.

Would you drink an entire bottle of hot sauce for $1000? What is it with the money questions?

Would you shave your head and get your entire body waxed for $5,000? No. I really like my hair

Would you give up watching television for a year for $25,000? I don't even own a tv

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Nearly our first blogiversary.

Today I was messing around with the template trying for the new look. If you're in Firefox it's not going to look right but it's a change. In IE it has pretty flowers. :) Anyway! Then I noticed that our archives date back to August of 2005! And it turns out that our first post was August 11, 2005. So, get ready for a celebration! We're about to turn 1 and there's nothing we love more than a virtual party.

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The Do-Wop Girls

KissesKisses Hosted on Zooomr

Here's why they love her. Notice that guy over her left shoulder? About 20 mins after this photo was taken he was sharing his life story and proposing.

Rae and her LoverRae and her Lover Hosted on Zooomr

So, we moved the blanket to break the thrall that Rae finds herself in when printed paper is around. And when we move up we end up sitting next to Skip. He's from NJ, down to see Steve McQueen on the BigScreen, has just lost his job....see how it goes?

Amber begins talking to anyone with an XY make up and Rae and I become the Do-Wop girls. We sit in the back offering funny (often sexual) do-wop obeservations and laughing with each other to add soundtrack to moment.

For instance, during the movie Steve hears from his love interest:

"What will happen to us now?"

And I stage whisper, "Sex. Sex. Sex."

Skip laughs and looks adoringly at Amber.

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