Friday, December 31, 2010

The Year in Review - 2010

You thought I couldn't make it, right?  365 posts in one year.  365 days with no real income.  100 showers.  EW!  You know it.

But here I am.  One year ago today, I quit my job and spent the following month selling everything I owned to prepare for a monumental trip around the world.  It was really hard because I liked my stuff.  I had good stuff.  The kind of stuff it takes years to accumulate.  Like my wine rack.  It took me forever to find a perfect wine rack that fit perfectly in the corner of my dining room.  Most wine racks only hold like 6 bottles of wine.  Or they're ugly.  But patience paid off and I found one on Craigslist.  And my dining room table.  I got it at a World Market that was about to close.  I found a couple of vintage blue bucket chairs that framed my fireplace perfectly from Vintage Modern Living out of Minneapolis.  All of my artwork - collected from local artists and friends...well, those I kept.  You can pry them from my cold, dead fingers.  Or the cold, dead fingers of the five or six friends who are graciously storing them for me at the moment.  And the clothes.  The clothes!  Since I've been wearing the same four outfits for about a year, I think back to my cram-packed walk-in closet with definite longing...

But really, I'm not feeling too too extra nostaligic at the moment.  Because even though I gave it all up, I got so much more in return.  For your viewing pleasure, some of the highlights of my 2010:

I got to hold a koala in Australia!

...hiked on a glacier in New Zealand

...experienced amazing hospitality, the world over.  (Samoan man sharing coconut from his yard.)

...saw Angkor Thom in Cambodia
...learned to surf

...went horseback riding in Guatemala

...swung from a rope into crystal clear waters in Laos

...watched a boat go through the locks at the Panama canal

...faced some very real fears.

...saw these buildings in Kuala Lumpur I've been dreaming about for years

...fed an elephant

...rode a motorscooter around Thailand

...learned to SCUBA

...Zip Lined in Nicaragua

...quality-timed it with my mom and dad

...and got to spend all summer with my favorite little boy in the whole world

What was your favorite blog post from 2010?  Comment me, I'm totally curious!  Here's mine.  Drum roll please.  Here, for your re-viewing pleasure:

It's not over yet folks.  I'm not planning to go home anytime soon, so stay tuned for more zany adventures, fear-facing, and of course, more poop stories.  I haven't even begun to tell all of those.

Makin' Plans...Big Plans.

Anciently ruined atop a mountain.
We're going to do the 4-day hike up the Inca Trail!  I went to Machu Picchu back in 2004, but took a bus to get there.  I watched all the haggard, stinky, crazy, bearded hikers walking around and I felt strangely like I cheated big time.  Then and there I decided I would hike it, someday.  Today I'm booking the trek!  I rounded up a group of 6 for sures and 3 maybes, and on May 11th, 2011 we will forego showers and pillows and fresh-smelling breath and walk the 26 miles straight up the mountain to arrive at the scene above. 

Hot New Fashion Sensation!

Click here to see the commercial that made me die laughing today.

Pajama jeans look like designer denim jeans! 
They're so comfortable, you'll want to sleep in them!
The problem with ordinary jeans is they're uncomfortable and leave marks on your skin!

Hang in there until the 1:05 mark, and watch the weird twist shimmy all the models to do show off the contours of their pajama jeans and how they fit virtually every body type!

Only $39.95.  Free 60-day money back guarantee.

p.s. I hate when people pronounce it paJAWmas.

Little Piggies

This little piggy went to market.

This little piggy went home.

This little piggy looks like roast beef.  I did ask for a 10% discount on my pedicure, but they didn't bite.

Scorpions Beware

Scorpions, you can't live here.  Even if you're just a tiny baby.  *Finger drawing line across throat.*  (Because I don't know to pantomime a mop handle squashing and a tossing in the toilet.)

Nicole did it all.  Then she says to me, "have fun pooping on a scorpion."

In Just 423 Days, You Too Can Read Anna Karenina!

Click here, follow the instructions, and you're on your way toward a minor in Russian Literature!

They will email you 423 installments of Anna Karenina.  I'm doing it, and now you can too!

Here's some info from

Anna Karenina has been described as the perfect Russian novel. Trapped in a loveless marriage, Anna Karenina is defenceless against the power of her passions once they are unleashed by the adoration of Count Vronsky. Having defied the rules of 19th-century Russian society, Anna is forced to pay a heavy price. Human nature, with all its failings, is the fabric of which this great and passionate work is composed.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Imitate the Statue

I am SO good at this game.

"Business Cards"

My friend Matt designed some information cards for me before my big trip so that I could share email/facebook/blog information with people I met.  When I was staying in Sydney Australia, the grandson of the couple hilariously taped TONS of my cards to his door.  I didn't even notice it until it was pointed out to me, but OH how we laughed.

Here's the little turd who did it.

The Fischers

And here is the big turd who put him up to it.

When Child Labor is OK

If it's 120 degrees with 100% humidity and that child's job is to sell ice cold beer, then I can get on board with child labor.  In fact, I'm in full support.

"One dolla one dolla one dalla lady lady lady lady lady one dolla"

"Kady Peed Her Pants"

From the annuls of the depths of my memory, this one comes flooding back every time I see a playground slide.  You know, the metal ones that you can't touch with your tongue in the winter?  My friends and I decided to fill the bottom of the slide with sand, and then slide down to the bottom and POOSH! sand goes flying.  When it was my turn, and I got to the bottom and the POOSH! happened, I decided I would sit at the bottom and make all my friends cover me in sand and then I would get up out of the sand.  How fun!  Except I didn't realize that I had to go pee, and while I was being buried I totally peed.  Kids are so gross! 

Anyway, when I stood up, my "friend" Rachel Kakageezik from two doors down started chant-singing, "Kady peed her pa-ants, Kady peed her pa-ants."

Post Number 355

One morning in Minneapolis I totally crashed on a couch in a house that my buddy Nancy was housesitting (yes, you, Natty and Dave).  In the morning there were four kids and 3 schools and so I offered to drive her oldest to school.  She hadn't eaten and so I brought her to the gas station.  I thought it was hilarious that I was trying to find something nutritious for her to eat before school, at the gas station.  Of course she chose a nasty premade sandwich and we bought gum and then it was off to school.  I felt kinda like a mom for the moment, and also kind of like a good friend.  It was a nice morning, and as I approached her high school, (not at all unaware that she is a new, small-town kid in a new, big-city school), I realized this kind of opportunity doesn't come very often.  I stopped the car in the drop off point, looked at her, and slowly rolled her window down.  No words were exchanged.  She shook her head 'no'.  I shook my head 'yes'.  She shook 'no', and I shook 'yes' for several minutes.  "I have to."  I said, and she cried just a little.  NO.  PLEASE.  Her eyes said.  YES, AND I'M SORRY, said mine back.


Wednesday, December 29, 2010

I Heart Trees

(You may remember this poem as the one my shop teacher made me memorize and recite for too many tardy arrivals to his class. But I never forgot it.)

I think that I shall never see a poem lovely as a tree.
A tree whose hungry mouth is prest Against the sweet earth's flowing breast
A tree that looks at God all day, And lifts her leafy arms to pray;
A tree that may in summer wear A nest of robins in her hair;
Upon whose bosom snow has lain; Who intimately lives with rain.
Poems are made by fools like me, But only God can make a tree. -Joyce Kilmer

And Hal, my dad.  My dad makes trees.  In fact he's kind of obssessed with them.  I call him Johnny Appleseed, because he's constantly planting trees.  Sometimes he just cuts off a branch of one tree and sticks it in the ground, and voila!  A new tree!  A tree that you better not accidentally scrape with the lawn mower because then you pretty much killed the tree and he'll never forgive you.  I often wonder if he would be as mad if somebody scraped ME with a lawnmower.  Probably not.  He'd probably suggest it was somehow my fault because, stupid, I got in the way. 

Remember this old Hal-ism? "I don't mind killing animals, but I hate killing a tree...unless it's already dead and I cut it up to burn it."

Maybe this is where I get my love for trees.  I love them.  I love taking pictures of them, and seeing their silhouette against the sky.  This year I have seen so many amazing trees.  Here are my favorites:



New Zealand, South Island

New Zealand, North Island








But my favorite? My absolute favorite tree in the whole world? This little momma, located in International Falls, MN, on the way up to my job at Island View Lodge. I got to drive by this tree almost every day this summer. I kept meaning to take a photo, but never got around to it. You can't really see it in this shot, but there is a huge crook in the neck of this tree.  I can't get enough of it.  Finally, when I went to dinner with my parents at Island View, I made my dad pull over the car so I could take this shot in the rain. Me and dad and my tree.

So True

"Never before have so many people with so little to say said so much to so few."

Blog Padding with Butt Scrunching in Bangkok

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