Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Dirty Diet Coke

January 9, 2018. I've gotten in the habit of stopping by Sonic every morning on my way to work for the past week for a Dirty Diet Coke (which has limes and coconut flavoring - yummy). I do NOT want this to become a long-term habit since I'm trying to wean myself from Diet Coke. 

Monday, January 8, 2018

See You in 2019

January 8, 2018. It seems like all of my colleagues fell ill over the holidays. I wasn't feeling great either when it was time to return to work last week. One colleague has had an especially bad time of it and has provided daily notifications that she won't be in the office yet. One of the senior staff members, who is famous for his good-natured ribbing, sent this reply to her today. Made me laugh out loud. 

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Bad Air

January 7, 2018. If there's one thing that would prompt me to away from Salt Lake City and my friends/family, it's the horrifically hideous winter air. Not exaggerating. Salt Lake City is completely surrounded by mountains and during the winter all the pollution is trapped in the valley by the cold air. The air is perpetually foggy and gray. It has seemed particularly bad this year, which is saying something. 

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Astronaut John Young

January 6, 2018. News reports today announced yesterday's passing of astronaut John Young- the most famous and accomplished astronaut you've probably never heard of. He had a career at NASA that spanned four decades and during that time he flew two Gemini missions, two Apollo missions, and two space shuttle missions. In 2008, I became obsessed with watching space documentaries and that was how I first became aware of him. I thought Young was fascinating and I Googled his name to learn everything I could about him. That was how I discovered Novaspace, the art gallery that hosts the annual Spacefest I attend. Sadly, I never got to meet him. I attended my first Spacefest in 2009 and Young attended his last Spacefest in 2007. For someone I've never met, he certainly changed my life profoundly. After attending my first Spacefest, I became hooked and over the course of nearly ten years I've met and interacted with almost every Apollo astronaut and a host of space shuttle astronauts and aviators. I have attended conferences, banquets, hall of fame celebrations, etc. I have formed lifelong relationships with people from all over the world. Attending that first conference literally opened up the world for me. I realized I could travel all over the country to pursue my interests and have amazing adventures. 

Friday, January 5, 2018

TED Talk Fanatic

January 5, 2018. Do you ever listen to TED or TEDx talks on YouTube? I'm totally obsessed with them. They are short videos by subject matter experts in a myriad of fields and disciplines. If there's a topic you're interested in, you can find a talk related to it. It's become my adult version of a bedtime lullaby. I usually listen to one each night to help me relax and to fall asleep. 

Thursday, January 4, 2018

My Sister Discovered Poop Emojis

January 4, 2018. My sister, who, it is important to note, is 10 years older than I am, has finally discovered poop emojis. Below is a conversation we had on Facebook Messenger today. Shaking my head...

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Thomas S. Monson

January 3, 2018. News came out today that the president of the Mormon church, Thomas S. Monson, passed away yesterday. Here's the reminiscence I posted on Facebook regarding this:

With the recent death of 90-year-old Thomas Monson (president of the Mormon church for my non-Utah friends), I've seen several posts by friends and family sharing their reminiscences of the man. Since I lived around the corner from him growing up, I've known him my whole life. My favorite memory is when he attended and spoke at my mother's funeral in 2009. As the casket was being rolled into the chapel, President Monson was at the head of the procession and my dad and I were following immediately behind him. My dad broke away and walked up to President Monson and asked him earnestly if he would really see his wife again in the next life. Broke. My. Heart. President Monson assured my dad that indeed he would be reunited with his beloved Polly one day. I'll always be grateful for the kindness he showed to my grieving father.

The part of the story that I didn't mention in my Facebook post is how President Monson's wife, Frances, also attended the funeral. Frances arrived separately from her husband and upon seeing her, my sisters and I descended upon her - much too enthusiastically for this very shy woman. When my mother served as the ward Relief Society president during the 1960s, Frances Monson was one of her counselors. My mother ADORED Frances. My mother was a charming southern belle, but she didn't ADORE a lot of people outside of her family. I recall everyone was so impressed that President Monson attended and spoke at my mother's funeral, but for my sisters and I, Frances Monson was the real rock star attendee that day.