Monday, June 29, 2009

Sad, Sad Souls

There were two instances at work that really tugged at my heart.

1. In the morning, an elderly lady came up to the service window. I asked her how I could help her. The lady opened up a retainer-type container, took out two small dentures, and put them on my desk. (I'm thinking, "Where are some disinfectant wipes?") She asked if her key could be taken out of the key locker on the weekends. I explained that the keys are always locked up, and the only way a person can take a key out is by using a password and a thumb print. So, her keys are very safe. She proceeded to tell me that while she was gone at church, someone came into to her apartment and threw away her teeth pieces. The woman believed that someone was one our maintenance workers. I told her that the guys would not touch her teeth and would leave them alone. She kept on repeating her request. I kept on trying to assure her (without laughing) that no one would throw her teeth away. After a few minutes of the conversation going no where, the lady left. The poor woman that she thinks the maintenance worker would deliberately throw away her dentures.

2. In the afternoon, another lady came up to the service window asking for the property manager. The resident was complaining to the manager that she wasn't going to have enough money to pay for July's rent because she quit her job. The manager told her that it takes 45 days for the zero income-zero rent request to go through. The tenant was irate and stomped off. The manager told me that the resident thought her rent was too high, so she quit her job so that it would be lower. And the lady is single and pregnant with her 4th child. Really?! What has our government come to? I'm all about helping deserving people. But, I don't like helping someone that is manipulating the system and treating children in an unfair manner. What a troubled lady.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Weekly Washington Post (6/28)

Another day, another dollar. That was my motto this week. Working a random summer job is a struggle when you have already have a real (and chosen) job. Although, I don't think I could've asked for a better job to provide me with unplanned entertainment. With that said, here was my week. Books I read: Princess Academy (I like Goose Girl better) and Complications: A Surgeon's Notes on an Imperfect Science.

-Caleb Manscill was in town, so we met up for lunch. It's always nice to see a familiar face.
-There was a terrible crash on the red-line metro; one train slammed into another. Luckily, I don't ride the red-line, but I still felt the effects of the extra long commute home. Thank you for all the calls and texts wondering about my safety. It's nice to know people love you!
-As soon as I got home, which was later than usual, I changed into sandals and headed out to FHE. We took kayaks out on the Potomac River. It was a lot of fun. And we were out there for the most beautiful time of day: sunset.
The family! I wish I would've had time to change into shorts because kayaking in a skirt is difficult.
Francis Scott Key Bridge--connects Rosslyn, VA to Georgetown

Kennedy Center

-Rhece Maeser Johnson was born!! He weighed 8 lbs 10 oz and was 21 in. Everyone was excited for the new little boy except for Rhece's older brother Parker. Parker said he was going to throw up if he saw a baby boy. Parker was perfectly content with the boys already in his family: himself, his dad, and Pops (my dad). Parker really wanted his family to be like his dad's family (which is mine) and have only one boy and all girls. At the hospital, he didn't want anything to do with the baby Rhece. But now, he's proclaimed that he loves Rhece 35 million.

-I was evacuated from my work building. There was a fire on the 7th floor. Of course there'd be a fire at my work! About 10 fire trucks showed up; it was a riot and a party. We were outside for about 45 minutes. It turned out that a washer caught on fire because a resident stuffed it too full and that caused the socket to blow up. Moral of the story: if ever wondering if you should do 1 or 2 loads, do 2.

-Nothing too exciting. Oh, Asuka was voted off SYTYCD. I was very happy about that.
-Dustin introduced himself to me at the complex gym. He told me that he'd seen me here a few times and just wanted to say hello. Ok, hello...bye. Funny guy.

-I made the observation that no one works until 6 on Fridays. The ride home was wonderful because I was able to sit down. I was very tired, so I leaned my head against the window, listened to my music, and closed my eyes. At one stop, a guy by the name of Chris sat down next to me. Why? I don't know. His buddy had his own row AND there was an empty row in front of his buddy. A few minutes later, Chris tapped me on the shoulder and introduced himself. He said he thought maybe we could get to know each other better, and he wanted to give me his number. How does eyes closed, ears plugged, and head rested mean talk to me and become my friend?! His buddy was watching the whole interchange and laughing.

-I love the swimming pool!
-Kate and I went to the District. We walked around a bbq pork competition; the smells were mouth watering. The National Portrait Gallery was in the area, so we stopped in there for a bit. It was time to eat when we left, so we walked over to Chinatown. Why are Chinatowns so crazy and busy? DC's and NYC's are the same: crowed, loud, and out of control. We did find an absolute hole in the wall Chinese restaurant that was absolutely delicious; that restaurant was an experience.
Raymon and Jennifer, I need to see this down by the time I get back.
What the Chinatown Friendship arch really looks like...
What it looks like now...

-I was sustained and set apart as a member of the ACTIVITIES committee. Yay, I love planning parties! The choir sang, and I did not laugh out loud during the performance. I'm really becoming a changed girl.
-I'm heading off to a dinner in a minute. I love food!

Make this week an awesome one!!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Weekly Washington Post (6/21)

I didn't have any daytime excursions this week because I worked. Yay for being a capitalist; my dad has taught me well. (Happy Father's Day!) Work is very funny. I wish y'all could come with me for just an hour; you'd experience so much. A resident referred to me as a "light skin" in a kind manner; I am the only one in the office and probably in the whole complex. But anyway, I did have a good week. Books I read: Shopaholic Takes Manhattan and Speak.

-FHE was held at Bishop and Sister Wellington's home. Their son is serving in the Tempe, Arizona mission, which is my home mission. He was even in Gilbert for a transfer, so they wanted to hear all about the area and such. Wonderful couple!

-Lindsey and I had an adventurous evening. We got tickets to see a dance concert at Wolf Trap, which is the National Park for the Performing Arts in Virginia somewhere. Well, we left later than we anticipated. We rode the Metro for a few stops and then decided to get off because a lady told us that it was going to take another 45 minutes. The show was starting in 15 minutes. When we got off, we decided we should go down to institute. What we thought was the correct stop was not. I called the church (thank you, Google text!). The guy was not quite sure how to get to the church and said that it would probably be a 20 minute walk. Great, institute was over in 10 minutes. So, we hopped back on the Metro for home. At least we knew how to get there. The whole evening only cost a $1.35 Metro ride because we never actually left the stations. This evening was an example of what happens when two people are new to the area.

-So You Think You Can Dance. Enough said.

-I told a maintenance worker that I felt like a big chocolate bar. His response, "Well, here you go!" He's tall and black. We laughed. I'm a blonde.

-If Dave Heywood is reading this, he'll like what I did. I went to my RS glampout, glamorous campout. It truly was glamorous because I didn't even stay over and sleep in the tent; I went home to my bed. (Although, I really do like camping.) Surprisingly, it was really fun. It reminded me of my summers attending girls camp.

-There was a combined ward activity in the morning. My ward (Colonial 1st) and DC 2nd met on the Mall and played games. It was pouring rain. Some die hard people played ultimate frisbee. I wasn't in the mood to get all muddy. Maybe another morning.
-After chatting, a group walked over to Eastern Market. It's an eclectic and artsy area. Very pretty things and really good sorbet.

-I was read in as a new member of the ward in church. I got a calling. Guess what it is??
-I went to the Temple Visitor's Center for a "Why I Believe" fireside. Senator Orrin Hatch and his wife were the keynote speakers. Prior to them, two recent converts were asked to share why they believe. After their brief remarks, the mission president asked anyone who had joined the church within the last year and hadn't done so already to stand up and "(1) introduce yourself, (2) say when you were baptized and (3) which ward you attend." About 15 people stood. Besides the 3 things, they all shared their very sweet and sincere testimonies. They were all so grateful for Elders so-and-so and Sisters so-and-so. You could see the pleased expressions on the missionaries' faces; I can only imagine Heavenly Father's. One lady's words brought tears to my eyes. She and her 10 year old daughter were baptized last month. She said she knows this is the true church and gospel because others have noticed a change for the better in her disposition. She knows the changes have come because of the loves she feels and by reading the Book of Mormon. She knows her feelings and changes are genuine. Very sweet. That was my favorite part of the fireside. The Hatches did a nice job. You know he's a senator because he's long-winded! All in all, it was a nice evening. Plus, I got to see the gorgeous Temple again!

Anyway, it's back to the trenches tomorrow. Have a splendid week!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Puts a smile on my face

One thing that I really like about DC is that it's easy for me to stay abreast on current events. That is thanks to the daily Express, a publication of The Washington Post, I read on my morning commute. My two favorite sections are "Eye Openers" and "Lookout Online". These sections share funny and outlandish stories and quotes. I wanted to share several that have brought a big smile and some laughs. Sorry if you find any of these offensive.

"I was gathering clothes for my mother to wear for her funeral. So, I go into her room and I am looking for undergarments and, behold, look what I found...Why does this 61-year-old woman have thongs?" encountered an eye-oopener when picking out her mother's final resting outfit

"Iran, try as I might, I can't take you seriously when you continue to allow a man in a Banana Republic windbreaker to run your country." --@williegeisti of MSNBC's "Morning Joe" tweets about the fashion sensibilities of Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

"There were buzzards flying overhead, and I wanted to see what they did." --Dean Richard Mark, 53, saying why he was naked behind a high school in Zephyr Cove, NV; he was arrested June 8th

"Sometimes when it comes to certain people going braless, it's obvious. But who's staring to see if that person doesn't have underwear on?" --Brooksville, FL, Mayor Joes Bernardini who dissented in a decision by the town's council to require city employees to wear underwear at work; spandex was also banned

"Horn honking which is done to annoy or harass others is not speech." --a judge said in a ruling against a woman who repeatedly honked her car horn to bug a neighbor in the early morning

"If those who made the atomic bomb and used it are ready to abandon it...of course, we will welcome and facilitate this process in all ways." --Vladimir Putin

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Just another morning

This was just a typical Monday morning in the office.

1. Phone ringing every other minute.
2. Closing out 50+ work orders before 10 (I get in at 9).
3. The 2 (and only) elevators are broken down.
4. Technician trying to fix the elevators but can't because the roof door is locked.
5. Calling all the maintenance guys 5 times to see if one of them has the key to the roof.
6. Supervisor giving the elevator guy permission to cut the lock.
7. Firemen and ambulance guys having to take the stairs with their stretcher and all because the elevators are out.
8. Residents calling and saying, "When are de elevadors goin' to be fix? I have an appointment I need to get to."
9. Phones stop ringing around 10:30 because the phone company has not received payment. And they're not turned on until around 2:00.
10. Police coming in to the office everyday to make sure someone is repairing the security cameras.
11. Security camera technicians working in the office and around the premise trying to figure out the cameras.
12. The boss is out of the office.

The best part of it all: I don't have to deal with any of it.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

They were more than sisters. They were friends.

That was on the cover of a copy of Little Women. Two of my sisters, Heather and Rebekah, had birthdays this last week. There are a billion reasons of why I love them. I chose some pictures that explain why I consider them my sisters and friends. Also, let me quickly describe them. Beka is always ready for a model shot. Heather is not. (She likes flashing her 6-pack abs instead.) Beka loves singing and dancing on stage. Heather does not. Beka likes hugging and outwardly expressing her love. Heather does not. Heather has an amazing jumpshot. Beka does not. Heather can run a 1/2 marathon without breaking a sweat. Beka cannot. Heather can have a song memorized after listening to it once. Beka cannot. Much love!!

Heather's in the middle with the kids

Weekly Washington Post (6/14)

The skill I improved this week was asking people, whether for directions or taking a picture. I got a work assignment this week. It's doing front office work for a government subsidized apartment complex. Very interesting group of tenants. The ladies in the office are funny and friendly. The best part of the job is that I get to read if the phone is not ringing or there is no one at the window to help. I've already finished two books since starting on Wednesday: Confessions of a Shopaholic and The Hiding Place. Another great thing that happened was I got to see my cousin, Daniel, and his wife, Katie, and their little darling, Madeleine. They were up in DC for a wedding and were able to squeeze me in for a couple hours on Saturday afternoon.

Monday--Smithsonian day
-Air and Space
-National Archives
-Natural History
-American History

Air and Space is my favorite Smithsonian. If I were alive in the 50s, I would've been a flight attendant. I would've fit all the requirements; height: 5'2"-5'6", weight: under 135 lbs, and education: 2 yrs of college or an RN.

National Archives
The Declaration of Independence--the poor document is so worn, but I guess that's a good thing.
The Constitution
Sculpture Garden--unique art
Natural History
The problem with having a random person take your photo is that they tend to cut things out.

GO Triceratops!!

-Ford's Theatre
-Petersen House (where Lincoln died)
-Post Office
-Federal Triangle area

The box that the Lincolns were sitting in.
Again, a little part cut out.
Post Office
If you haven't read Benjamin Franklin's autobiography, read it this summer!! It's a quick and inspiring book.
Views of DC from the bell tower

-learned how to speak like a Black person
-went to Temple Night at the DC Temple--absolutely stunning!!

Friday night
-ate really good Thai food
-saw this clever movie

-afternoon with Daniel, Katie, and Madeleine
-went to the American History museum
-ate at Good Stuff Eatery (delicious burgers)
-went to the George Strait concert (love him!!)

Sweet and darling Madeleine
My mom absolutely hated our Chrysler Dodge minivan, more lovingly called "The Woody." We only had it for a couple years while I was in elementary school. But, I think her feelings toward it will change since it's now on display in the Smithsonian. FPK554.

The King of Country (aka George Strait, for Rebekah)

It rained during George's part. The little white flashes are not fireflies but raindrops.

-went to church
-rode the whole way home with the window down
-took a nice nap
-went to ward choir (I did not laugh)
-going to a popsicle party