Monday, April 30, 2007

Now I've seen everything

When I was in 6th or 7th grade, P2, TheDeanInc, and I flew to Utah to visit my father's family. At the airport I briefly left to use the restroom. When the toilet flushed on it's own, I was taken so off guard that I ran out to P2 and related the experience.

"Dad! I stood up and the toilet flushed! Is someone watching? That's just creepy."
"'s automatic. What did you think about the sinks?"
"What do you mean?"
"The sinks come on when you stick your hand near the sensor. You washed your hands right?"
"Um, I'll be right back."

Now that I'm older and actually practice proper sanitation habits, I thought I'd seen it all: automated toilets, sinks that dispense sparse amounts of water, sliding doors, and paper towels units that require no transfer of germs. But no. I was introduced to a new product at the airport this past week.

Behold the saniseat. I waved my hand in front of the sensor and a new plastic sleeve covered the toilet. A counter on the wall not only informed the janitor how many sleeves remained but also confirmed to me just how many other "seats" had sat on my throne.


Strange things to ponder when you're sitting. I thought I'd seen it all. Now I'm hoping I've seen it all. What's next? Actually, I don't want to know.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Goooooooo Cougars!

Today the Parental Units, Little Boy Blue, and I leave for Utah. TheDeanInc is getting his Bachelor in Sociology from Brigham Young University and we decided to celebrate with him. Events like this lead me down memory lane to my graduation back in 2002. I'm a BYU Alumna and saying that always brings a smile to my face.

My college adventure started in 1997. I actually went full-time for five years. Not that I had a hard major really but that I changed so many times I was constantly starting over. I first started out with Elementary Education. It was my dream growing up to be a 1st grade teacher with my bestest friend Elke. We were going to be at the same school, in the same hall, wear those tacky school house vests, walk the halls after school for exercise, and grow old together. However, the summer after my freshman year I worked at a day care and realized I might not have the patience required for that profession.

Sophomore year I did a 180 and switched my major to Speech Pathology. I struggled with this major. In the end, I realized the letter C is nice at the beginning of my name but not on a transcript. I switched again.

I jumped head-on into Social Work. The study of helping people. I like helping and I like people. Perfect combination. So I went to work. I wanted to focus on adoptions. Do you realize how much red tape surrounds adoptions? Actually, around just helping people? LOTS. It was such a frustrating major. Even though I had the knowledge and resources, I couldn't actually help the person due to this rule or that rule. So, my fourth year, or my "first senior year" as I called it, I switched again.

Recreation Management was my new direction. And I loved every minute of it. Aside from the standard research papers, book assignments, and professor interviews, my homework consisted of camping, hiking, biking, water rafting, and dutch oven cooking. Can't complain about that!

I graduated August 2002. I had worked all summer at a day camp called Canyon Crest. The camp deserves it's own post so more on that later. The whole fam-damily came out for the commencement. As my name was called, Shelly-Belly belted, "It's about time!" from the audience. Meanwhile I was running across the stage with my arms in the air yelling, "I did it!" When I got to the other side of the stage, the department head handed me my diploma. A simple handshake is typical but I was so ecstatic I gave one of the biggest bear hugs in me.

August 16, 2002 really was one of the happiest days of my life! Just look at that smile. Any fun graduation memories?

Monday, April 23, 2007

The generation gap

Last night Johnny-Cherie plopped down on my bed and informed me she needed my assistance. She'd been given a creative writing assignment and concluded I would be a valuble resource since I'm known to write the occasional poem or song. She related the requirements to me. Although there was no minimum length, the rhyming scheme had to follow one of the following patterns: ABAB, ABAC-ABAC, or ABA-ABA.

I asked, "What about ACDC?"

She looked at me and said, "That's not a rhyme."

"Um, Yeah. I know. That's the name of a band."


Bloggers, the generation gap just got a little wider.
The next letter is K. All the letters are made up of only straight lines.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Mensa Madness

Julia Gulia bought Little Boy Blue a children's trivia book for his birthday. The book is produced by Mensa - the High IQ Society that requires members to score in the top 2% of standard intelligence tests. Since it's a child's book, I thought I'd be able to answer a few questions, however, with each challenge I attempt, the more I realize I can't even be an adult version of a Mensa Child. *Sigh.

Last night I sat down with P2, Mama Mia, and Johnny-Cherie. Here is the question:

What letter comes next and why?

P2 got the letter right but not the reason. Mama Mia was on the right track but never verbalized her it doesn't count. Johnny-Cherie, Little Boy Blue, and I were all confused. Can YOU figure out the answer?

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

If I had a garden...

...I'd plant my tulips next to yours.

I was the pickup queen in college. I actually kept a notebook of my favorites. A fun ploy of mine was to engage a guy in conversation then just break out a pickup line. I wasn't ever serious; just thought it was fun to jazz up the conversation. One catch: I could say the lines to any guy except my current crush.

To pay for college, I worked at the BYU Creamery. During the three years+ of employment, I worked my way from Ice-Cream-Scooper-Peon to Student-Manager. One of my favorite duties was manning the register. One week, I had a crush on a particular regular named Steve. He came in to buy his standard donut-and-milk special and was next in my line. Without thinking, I said, "I'm ready to check you out now." His eyebrow raised and he deliberately responded, "Oh are you now..."

For once the table was turned on me. I didn't know how to respond and I felt my face turn the shade of strawberry ice cream. I guess this gave him the encouragement he sought because he asked me out the next week. Each time he came through my line after that, I tried a different line just for kicks. I purposely found the cheesiest types around.

"Is your daddy a baker? Cus you got a nice set of buns."
"If I could rearrange the alphabet, I'd put U and I together."
"Do you believe in love at first sight or should I walk by again?"
"Are your legs tired? Cus you've been running through my mind all day!"

You get the point. Any favorites you want to share?

Monday, April 16, 2007

I'm gonna be rich someday

I recently went on a weekend camping trip. And when I say camping, I mean a cabin fully loaded with beds, sheets, a real wood burning stove, a kitchen with all the amenities, and a clean bathroom with towels and little soaps in the corner. Oh man, I love camping! Well, I got up on Saturday morning to the smell of bacon, sausage, biscuits, eggs, and orange juice. Did I mention I love camping with boys that know how to cook? I do. Anyway, I stumbled into the kitchen and greeted a few of my fellow campers. After a tired response from one of the guys, he came over and pinched me.

Um, excuse me...what was that for?
"Today is St. Patrick's day. I don't see you wearing anything green."

In my hasty packing job, I neglected to pack any green items to ward off pinchers. Not wanting to end the day with a bruised arm, I decided to make a quick stop at a little gift shop. In some obscure corner, I found this hemp bracelet with a green butterfly. It's not just any bracelet though. It was among several others each with a different color trinket weaved onto the hemp. After purchased, you tie it around your wrist or ankle and wait. Wait for it to fall apart. Or break off. The color represents the value you desire. For instance, yellow means luck. Theory has it that once the yellow bracelet falls apart, the wearer will suddenly accumulate mass amounts of luck. Red represents romance, blue was knowledge, and green is for wealth. I normally would have picked a different color but since it was March 17th, I needed the green charm. So I've been wearing it for nearly a month.

Hmmm...that's kinda gross now that I think about it. But one day, I'm gonna be rich and being dirty won't matter. With my money I'm going to hire someone to do all my shopping. They will buy me a nice camera and I'll take pictures all over the world. (Oh, because I'm going to travel too.) One day I'll be in some foreign country and I'll snap a photo of a stranger. I won't know it at the time but the stranger will be a world renowned chef. When I go to show him his picture, he will invite me over for roasted artichoke, tender lamb, and mango pudding. Of course I'll go because I like an adventure. And food. On our way, he'll tell me stories of meals he has prepared for kings, foreign dignitaries, and princesses. "Do you want to meet the prince?" he will ask. I will stammer a simple yes. As we approach the palace, I will smell the flowers from the gardens. The breeze will flow through the curtains draped over the open windows. Music and laughing from inside will dance in my ears. We'll climb the stairs to the massive entrance door and greet the fellow guests. The prince will recognize his friend and come over to welcome us. After a short curtsy, the prince and I will have been introduced. A new tune will begin and the prince will take my hand and escort me to the middle of a large dance floor where we will sway and promenade for awhile. As the song nears completion, the prince will twirl me once more and allow me to fall into an impressive dip. Applause will fill the room. The prince will return to his hosting duties while I relish my artichoke, duck, and mango pudding.

*Sigh. I wish this bracelet would hurry up and fall off already.

What would you do with your money?

Friday, April 13, 2007

Gnarly Gnails

In case you are just tuning in - and if so, welcome to the site - I lost a bet. It was just three games of dominoes. What harm is there in that? So I anteed up and risked a little self dignity. If I won, my buddy had to bleach his beard. If I lost, I had to live my Sunday out with ridiculously long nails.

I was very shy about the whole ordeal while at church. Friends would come to shake and as soon as my hand extended, a quizzical expression replaced their smiles while they questioned my new "accessories". The reactions amused me:

"Oh! Um, when did you get those?"
This morning. I lost a bet.
*Sighing* "Oh that's good. You don't seem like one of those girls."

"Um wow. Those are new."
Yeah, I lost a bet.
*Laughing* "Okay, that's funny."

At home it was a different story though. I made some enchiladas for dinner. Let me rephrase that. I tried to make enchiladas for dinner. I had to have help opening the cheese. I couldn't roll the tortillas without splitting open the shell. I had a hard time shredding the chicken. I had to ask for help getting the dish in and out of the oven. (Did you know it's hard to put on an oven mitt when your fingers extend an extra inch?) And don't even talk to me about pushing the buttons on the stove. I had to use my knuckles.

Julia Gulia was sitting on the couch examining an easter decoration with one of our mutual friends. The bunny has long ears, a bushy tail, and long legs. ...but no arms. Our friend turned to JG and said, "What do Charlotte and this bunny have in common?" I don't know. What? "They are both helpless!"

Hey! You better watch out or I'll come poke your eye out!

I'm sure I'm not the only one to lose a bet. Any crazy wagers you care to admit? Or know of a bet someone else lost?

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

My Celebrity Look-alikes

A few months ago several of my blogger friends found their Celebrity DNA. The steps are simple:

1. Upload a picture of yourself to
2. Hit compare.
3. Wait while the computer compares your face with celebrities around the world.
4. Enjoy the results.

Here at Charlottalove, the steps are never quite that simple. I look different at various times during the day. The mornings are, shall I say, blurry. I purposely don't put on any type of corrective lenses until after showering. Things are just prettier this way. In fact, it turns out I'm actually pretty manly in the morning.

Did you like the scarf? It was cold that morning okay!

Now, if I actually spend an hour drying my hair, putting on makeup, straightening my hair, brushing my teeth, coordinating a cute top with pants, putting in earrings, the results are female at least.

Either Dakota Fanning looks quite mature for her age or I need to wear more makeup. Dakota Fanning?...seriously?

So, if you ever want to get together for dinner or something, please specify: Newman or Elizabeth. Also, don't ever complain if I'm late.

Monday, April 9, 2007

My GRE(at) friends

I took the GRE last Monday. For those of you lucky enough to not know, the GRE stands for Graduate Record Examinations. Much like particular scores on the SAT or ACT are required for college, the GRE is the entrance exam taken before applying to graduate school. Those who knew I was studying were a fantastic support. Thanks to all of you.

If this were the Grammys, or the GREmmys you might say, I couldn't sit down, or log off, without thanking two specific individuals.

JFK, my partner in crime for April Fools, was a great teacher for the verbal section. He bolstered me as I climbed the vocabulary mountain. JFK's effervescent erudition replaced my plebian parlance with a veritable cornucopia of ornate locution. Although I felt inundated with apprehension, JFK mollified my emotions. I also learned when I am vulnerable, I can be irascible.

And Divine-Devin was my math whiz. He reminded me to FOIL and to Please Excuse My Dear Aunt Sally. He reminded me how to tell the difference between equilateral, isosceles, or right triangles and how to find the side lengths or angles. He taught me how to compare x and y, define the slope in terms of M, dot my I's and cross my T's. It was great fun to KISS.

Whoa! Did I just read that right? Yes, you did. Of course I can't be serious about anything 100% of the time. "I'm studying" is such a hackneyed expression. I preferred to KISS instead. You know...Knowledge Integration of Study Strategies. What were you thinking? It was great at church to casually see Devin in the hall and ask, "When can you get together to KISS next?" Heads would turn but people were too prude to inquire our dating status. You can imagine, when only a few weeks later, I show up engaged to someone else. You might say I like to stir things up a bit. You might also say I like attention. In fact, the latter is probably truer than I want to admit. Isn't it the middle child that craves attention? If so, I was born three children too early.

Oh. I digress. Back to the GRE. I've taken the first, and possibly the hardest, step towards graduate school. JFK and Devin, I'm just glad you were there to make it easier and to help me not trip. Thanks!

JFK, I didn't get a 1600 but you helped me tremendously. Thanks! ~Charika

Divine Devin~ The kissing sure paid off. Thanks! ~Charika

Friday, April 6, 2007

A Poem

To one of my readers,
Yes, you with the rhyme,
I had lots of questions
From others this time.

On the phone I was asked,
"Do you know him? A friend?
And at home "Who's the poet?"
The questions won't end.

To those of you wondering,
The blogger's a guy
That too lives in Georgia.
In fact, pretty close by.

We've never met
But we've spoken before.
He dropped an e-message
Saying "Your blog's not a bore."

So MLH thanks again
For your poems of thought
They are enjoyed, I assure you,
By all quite a lot.

Now to everyone else,
I've got some fun news.
Some charlotta-humor
That I can't refuse.

Last night I played Dom'noes
And wagered a bet.
Thinking I'd win,
There was nothing to fret.

The best out of three.
Score: Me-1, 1-He.
The final round's loser,
Alas, it was me.

This Sunday's the day
When to church I must come,
With super long nails
On each finger and thumb.

One thing I know
Is the contacts go first.
Cus poking my eye
Is "scenario worst!"

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Nice while it lasted

Well, it's back to being single again. JFK and I just didn't have what it takes to last. *Sigh.

So what does it take to make it last? I'll tell you. Actually, I'll let a younger version of me tell you. Looking through my journal I found a letter to myself. You may think that's silly but the silliest part is it's not my first letter to myself nor the last. It's the best way I have found to make and keep goals. If I write myself a letter to open on a particular date, I not only want to achieve those goals but I get to read a funny note in the end. I have chosen leap year as my goal mark. So...stay tuned next February for those goals! In the meantime, this is a letter I wrote to myself "to be opened on my 25th birthday or when I marry - whichever comes first". So, on my 25th birthday I read:

April 13, 2000

Hey cutie, I love how I addressed myself,
How are you? Fine, thanks. So how much have we improved in this short span? I really hope you are still working on your procrastination problem. Right now I am in the library where I'm supposed to be working on my old testament. I guess some things never change. Nope. I'm writing this blog and should be in bed. I guess I should do this like a new year resolution and just go through different areas. ...ROMANCE: Well, I'm not married yet, but I am well on my way to getting there...Oh really. Do go on. In having 2 flings recently, I learned a lot. I need to be honest with myself and him regarding my feelings. I can't hold out and expect him to do all the work. He should be my best friend, someone I can trust with anything; someone, who even if they laugh at something stupid I do, (or vice versa) that it is out of love and not to offend; a person who can tolerate my imperfections yet at the same time help me to improve. Shoot, if I'm going to be with this person for for-eva, he better be good looking. Either that, or EVERY kiss will be with my eyes shut! You tell it sister! I want someone who respects me and treats me so. A little prank here and there is fine but no demeaning junk. Me? Pranks? I need someone who will walk beside me as we start a family, experience job changes, teenagers, church responsibilities, family deaths, financial problems, whoa girl...stop predicting this stuff, etc.

If I could have any physical trait, (and sorry honey if you don't live up to my 21 year-old futuristic views) and honey, I hope you don't mind that I called you honey even though I don't know who you are, I really like:
Tall - as in 6 ft and higher.
Musical - Love the guitar or piano. VOICE!
Outgoing - Not a social dork! love the description
Outdoorsy - I can't camp by myself.
Clean - I refuse to be a maid.
Funny - Not looking! Come on now.
Sporty - gotta get those muscles somewhere. Wow, and apparently I had no shame in admitting shallowness when it comes to physical traits.
And ready for an adventure.
Above all, religious.

Hon, I'm back to calling myself hon now, keep up the great work. Yes ma'am. Love Charlotte.

So there you have it. You heard it from me. Kinda. Several years ago. But now. uhhh never-mind...

Sunday, April 1, 2007

It's Official Today!

Today I am officially engaged!
The official picture of me and JFK.

The official ring. Isn't it just...something!

JFK, in the garden of life, you are my pansy; the oil spot in my driveway; the mushed banana in my bread.

The wedding is planned exactly one year from today. I've picked out a reception hall with leopard print wall paper and lace chairs...the classiest around. Don't forget the date 4.01.08 - can I put you down as a yes?