Aug. 31: IDCEAYWTPFriday

ponchYay! It’s Friday! I feel like this week has been nonstop go-go-go (as opposed to nonstop go-go, which would actually be kinda groovy), and I’m finally getting time to breathe. Breathing’s good.

  • I’m sleeping again. This makes me and my family happier than you can imagine. In fact, I’ve been going to bed around 10pm all week, which is quite early for me, and sleeping eight or nine hours each night. It’s very nice. It’s amazing how much a good night’s rest helps us cope, y’know?
  • This morning I watched the pilot episode of The Mindy Project and thought it was adorably charming. I’m not a huge fan of Kelly, Mindy Kaling’s character on The Office—she’s completely insane in a not adorably charming way—but I like her as a real person in interviews, and eagerly got Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns) when it came out last year. I was disappointed in the book—seems there’s a lot more Kelly in Mindy than I thought. So… liking her new TV show was a surprise to me. Watch it.
  • My email server is farked up and I don’t know why. I haven’t had time to investigate it thoroughly this week, but if you need to reach me, go through Facebook or email me at one of my other email addresses, like jennifermanullang-at-gmail-dot-com.
  • I’m totally hooked on the logo quiz games on the iPhone. There are tons of them—lots online too. See how much you suck at identifying logos! Actually, it’s pathetic how many logos I do recognize—I can’t remember how math works, but I sure can identify the Chupa Chups logo. Gah.
  • A few weeks ago I was interviewed by the editor of the West Linn Tidings—or as she’s known here at Stuff Jen Says, Fancy Lori™—for a special “Living with Cancer” feature in Portland’s community newspapers. It came out this week. I don’t know yet if it’ll be online, so I took pictures to show ya. Here’s the cover—that’s me and Victor in the upper right:

photo 1

And here’s the article that Lori wrote so well.

photo 2

  • I can’t believe school starts next week—August went so quickly. Jack will be in fifth grade and Katie’s going into seventh. I love, love, LOVE that they are growing up—no wistful what-happened-to-my-babies? from this mom. Well, maybe when they start driving, but that’ll be from fear, not wistfulness.
  • Jack took this picture of Lucy in front of her favorite hanging-out spot and snack area. I edited it to show where she likes to chew on the window frame. She is the biggest termite I have ever seen. Also the cutest.

photo 4

Have a good holiday weekend. Happy September!


Aug. 29: Month in Review

Here’s my review of August 2012.

Special days I celebrated this month and how:

  • No big-deal birthdays or holidays. August measures low on the celebrations scale in our family.
  • Katie registered for seventh grade.
  • PTO started moving full steam ahead-like this month. That’s cool (for now).

Gifts I gave and/or received this month:

PTO welcomed teachers back to school with special survival kits. They were so much fun to put together! We presented them yesterday at the Welcome Back lunch we serve every summer.

No, they aren’t 2-liter bottles of booze. They contain disposable toothbrushes, microwave popcorn, Alka-Seltzer, lip balm, Motrin, personalized note cards, ear plugs, lint rollers, mints, marbles (in case they lose theirs), energy bars, cough drops, and more silly things. How we got all the stuff in there is m-a-g-i-c. For realsies.

I tried to pack a little extra hate in a couple of the teachers’ bottles, but Theresa wouldn’t let me. Pfffftt. Theresa’s such a peace-keeper. She’s like Gandhi, if Gandhi was a wine-swigging, potty-mouthed, very pretty girl.

While searching the web for teacher gift ideas, I found this:

Books I read this month:

  • The Angel’s Game, by Carlos Ruiz Zafón. I thoroughly enjoyed this book--could hardly put it down--though I’m not entirely sure what happened. He said it was supposed to be up to our own imagination, but I must not have one because I was ever so confused!
  • Memoirs of a Geisha, by Arthur Golden. This glimpse into Japanese culture was completely fascinating.
  • The Memory Keeper's Daughter, by Kim Edwards. I did not enjoy this book. It was so sad and hopeless, and I hated the deceit from which the story was made. While it had the happiest ending it could have, it was still just a big bummer.

Movies and TV shows worth mentioning:

  • So glad that Grimm is back on TV.
  • The Olympics were great fun.
  • My laptop fan makes a terribly loud noise that makes me want to throw it against the wall. Playing PIXAR movies at high volume drowns out the noise. I kinda love it a lot. 
  • I watched the first episode of the new Matthew Perry sit-com and it looks pretty funny. It’s Chandler-y sarcasm and wit--LOVE!

Special or unusual purchases I made:

  • It’s not every month I buy 18 lint rollers.
  • Jack got sport goggles for playing football. They’re funny. Don’t tell him I said that; to him, I said he looked totally awesome, like a real athlete.

This month’s disappointments:

  • Summer seemed awfully short.
  • Victor’s stoopid car is acting weird.
  • Jack had his first football injury--he hurt his foot. We thought it was broken at first because it was so swollen and tender, and Lucy stepping on it didn’t help. By the next day, though, he had no trouble putting weight on it. Whew.

My accomplishments:

PTO projects are coming along. Preparing for school to begin is a pretty big task, but I have enthusiastic helpers, thank buddha.

Anything else noteworthy:

  • I hate Express-Scripts so much. If they were a person I would make a voodoo doll and do despicable, fiery things to it. 
  • I got interviewed by a newspaper about surviving cancer. More on that later.
  • I have funny pictures to share:


That’s it, doods.

Aug. 22: Another post

I’m running on two hours’ sleep (ten for the week so far), with a meeting at 10am and another at 7pm. It’s either gonna be a long day or I’m going to the 7pm meeting with some really bad pillowhead (but alert!).

Here’s some misc stuff:

  • My dreams—few though they’ve been, given the number of hours I’ve slept this week—have recently been all about the Manullang Geisha House. I’m reading Memoirs of a Geisha and it has completely invaded my unconscious and I’m not OK with this. I mean, I have nothing against geisha, but for the last four mornings I’ve awakened angry at Victor for starting this little family biz. Why would he do that? We don’t have enough going on already???
  • Today is Mike Devitt’s birthday, according to Facebook. Happy birthday, Mike! Here’s a balloon.

birthday (4)

  • I’m kinda pissed because yesterday there was a shooting at the Clackamas Fred Meyer and my friend Stephanie was in there with her family at the time. She was neither the shooter nor the victim; in fact, her family got out unharmed, but STILL. Scariest thing EVER. People are assholes. Not Stephanie. I love Stephanie. And I’m glad she’s alive. Grocery shopping shouldn’t be this dangerous.
  • Grimm is back! I think it might annoy me this season. Cliffhangers at the end of every episode? I usually hate shows like that. Also, for you locals—what hospital was that in Monday’s episode? My guess was Good Sam; Vic’s was something else but he was wrong.
  • Have I told you lately how much I love football? I haven’t? Hm.
  • Chuckles:







Let’s all take naps today. Seriously. We’re gonna need ‘em. Especially Mike, who is super-old now.


Aug. 16: IDCEAYWTPFriday

ponchI know, two weeks in a row of shirtless Ponch. I cannot believe it also.

  • Jack’s football draft has finally finished and… well… he’s on a team. Today we got an email from the coaches, and besides a schedule that has entirely too many practices and games that involve football, it listed lots of reminders like these:

Parents parent, coaches coach, referees ref, kids get the fun job to play. Any time we cross someone else’s job description, problems will arise.

On game day: parents stay in bleachers, not on the track or sidelines.

At practice: parents, no shouting instructions or commands at their own child.

If you have a legitimate concern, talk to me at practice and ask for a time to meet the following day. No emails, VM or text. Talk in person (away from other parents).

Parents: Please try watching the entire spectrum of players, not just your own child. The best parents are those without kids, the best coaches have never coached, the best marriage advice seems to come from divorcees and single people.

  • You know what that stuff makes me think? They tell us these things because parents have given them reason to and therefore, parents are unbelievable assholes! I can’t believe people need to be reminded to be decent human beings. I’m running for Football Parent Non-Asshole of the Season. It sounds like there might not be a lot of competition.
  • Last night Dina and I went to The Bloggess’ reading/signing at Powell’s in Beaverton. Powell’s waaaay underestimated her popularity—they didn’t have ticketed signing and they ran out of books. It was insanity. And so was her presentation, but in the best way. I adore that woman and her very twisted sense of humor. If you have not yet read the silliness that is her book, put it next on your reading list.
  • Why did the Olympics have to end? Pffft.
  • The other day I straightened my hair. It took approximately four hours, and that’s why I was late to everything that day. The most frustrating part was not even how long it took, but that five minutes later my hair started telephone cord-ing up again.


  • Here’s my advice: if you have chemo and your hair starts coming back all curly, don’t believe people who tell you how lucky you are. You are going to fight with that hair until the end of your days.
  • There’s something wrong with Vic’s car and that sucks.
  • There’s something wrong with my new laptop and that also sucks, though Vic might suggest his problem is worse. Whatevs. My laptop is making a loud noise that’s super-annoying, but I suppose it won’t break down on I-205 on the way to work.
  • Here’s a picture for Sonya, my fab sister-in-law. I can’t wait ‘til she looks like Kim Jong Il!!  Smile  (And no, I don’t feel bad, because the Caucasian aging process is way uglier and starts happening way sooner, IMO. Like, in my case, at 32.)


  • Did you see the season premiere of Grimm this week? It was edge-of-your-seat kind o’ stuff. I hate two-parters, but I’m glad there’s some new TV to watch, so I’ll let this one slide.
  • This weekend Vic’s extended fam is going to Great Wolf Lodge. I love it there, but since I’m not a swim-in-public person, I have opted to stay home. BY MYSELF. It’s possible that I still win.


Aug. 13: Keeping up with the Sherilees

willshakespeareSherilee occasionally posts poetry on her blog, and it’s so meaningful and well-chosen, and in comparison, it makes my blog smell like cantaloupe that was left out overnight: Dumpster-y. But this morning I thought, HEY! I can post poetry too! I wrote poems once upon a time, and they were gooooood.

Here’s a favorite—Kim F’n-W and I wrote it in 1988-ish for Mike Devitt’s roommate in France, whom we’d never met but he once told Mike to tell us “hi,” so, y’know, we had to behave like good Americans and respond in the most cordial way we knew how. You would NEVER KNOW that this was hastily composed on the back of a US Bank receipt while we sat in a parking lot in Walla Walla. Never.

To that guy in Mike’s room 

We know a lot about you
We know we know you well
We know you know that we know
We know you know cuz we can tell.

(Kim, our invitations to be France’s co-poet laureates should arrive any day. They’re just running 24 years late…)


Aug. 10: IDCEAYWTPFriday

ponchMy favorite thing about I Don’t Care Enough About You to Write in Transitioning Paragraphs Friday is shirtless Ponch. Yay, shirtless Ponch!  Don’t deny it—you’re happy to see him too.

  • This might have been my favorite thing that’s ever come out of Jack’s mouth, right up there with “Mom, you’re so much cooler than Dad” and anything that isn’t vomit.  Yesterday we were watching the Olympics and I mentioned how funny diving is because every dive looks so great until they show them in slow motion and then everyone’s all WOW, THAT TOTALLY SUCKED!! Jack said, “What I don’t like about watching football on TV is that after every play they have to show it in slow motion and talk about it forever. It takes a really long time.” Since he’s pretty much all-football-all-the-time these days, and I am what you call a Hater of Football, this surprised and thrilled me. He’s starting to get it! He’s finally understanding one of the most annoying things about a sport that makes no sense! Also, I hope he doesn’t get it completely until this season is over because football is very time-consuming for Jen and we’re already committed.
  • Have you seen these free handwriting fonts? I love ‘em!
  • Last week I shared some of the DIY cleanser recipes I’ve been using. Here’s a site that lists a whole bunch of them. I can’t vouch for any of them, but if you’re looking for varieties on the theme, you’ll have a lot from which to choose.
  • Tonight’s Mary Carillo report on the Olympics was about royal titles and family coats of arms (coat of armses? coats of arm?). Here’s the Saltmarsh coat of arms images I found in Google image search:

    saltmarshcoatofarms1  saltmarshcoatofarms2

    The Latin phrase on the “Saltmarshe” one means “power to the stars.” I don’t know what all the other symbols represent but I think I’m supposed to be more impressed than I am.
  • Did they seriously just interrupt the Olympics with the “breaking news” that Mitt Romney’s going to announce his running mate tomorrow? Why is it breaking news that he’s GOING to announce? How ‘bout we break into stuff with actual news? Pffft.
  • Y’know those fabulous Dole Whips at some Disney parks? Here’s a recipe to make them at home. Yuuuum.
  • Have you seen the latest Simon’s Cat videos? So cute.

In closing, here’s a photo just for Sunshine.

jonbaker  Winking smile

That is all. Have a good one, peeps.


Aug. 6: Silly, mean, deep, mean, inappropriate. And mean.

This morning I thought I’d do one of those “currently” posts, but YAWNERS. It got boring, fast. Instead, I’m going to share stuff I’ve been collecting—some’s funny, some’s profound, but none of it’s YAWNERS, I promise. Here ya go.




bachelorette party cake
Bachelorette party cake = BRILLIANT




















I totally did not think of Tina when I saw this… nope…






















Something happened on Facebook this weekend that angered me greatly. A friend shared a well-written article about the protests surrounding that chicken restaurant (you know the one) that has donated to anti-gay campaigns for years, and it prompted a “friend” of that friend to leave an incredibly offensive and ignorant comment about why she thinks gay marriage should not be legal. What bothered me besides the Bible verses she used to support her statement was that she prefaced the whole thing with, “I know and love a number of homosexuals, but…”

I wanted to reply with many, many words that would offend her right back. I know a lot of words like that; I totally coulda. Because no, you don’t love a number of homosexuals if you think legalizing their marriage will destroy the family basis of society and have “a much more far-reaching agenda than appears on the surface, including legalizing pedophilia and bestiality.” You don’t love them at all. You hate them. You think they’re icky and sinful and wrong. And that makes me think YOU are icky and sinful and wrong. Argh.

I didn’t have to respond because other people did, and they did it in a way that was so much better and more fair than I would have. They quoted the Bible AND EVERYTHING. It was the best. Because this is the truth:


And it reminded me of something I heard Aziz Ansari say on the subject (he’s the actor who plays the very annoying Tom on Parks & Recreation):

“My whole take on the gay rights issue, particularly gay marriage, is, let’s be honest, if you’re against gay marriage, you just don’t like gay people and you want to stick it to ‘em. And I’m not saying that I wouldn’t do the same thing if I was presented with similar opportunities. If there was a law up for debate where it was like – ‘hey man, do you think guys that wear tight t-shirts and get bottle service at nightclubs should be allowed to own property?’ – I’d be like, ‘No!  @$#@ those guys! Yeah, uh, it violates the sanctity of owning property and it says in the Bible that they’re douchebags.’ Whatever I need to say so you don’t think this is coming from purely a place of hate.” —Aziz  Ansari


Don’t think that I don’t realize how much of my post today has to do with not liking people. While it was not a conscious decision to lump all these things together, well, there they all are. Heh heh heh.

So’s not to leave a “Jen be so meeeeean!” taste in your mouth, here’s a picture of Lucy and Millie being friends that don’t chase or hiss or bite or claw. Sometimes they are very sweet critters.


I hope your day also has very little chasing, hissing, biting, or clawing.



Related Posts with Thumbnails