Sunday, August 31, 2008


They're definitely not all better, but they're getting there! The doctor opened up the blisters on Tuesday, and then the skin that had been covering the blisters dried out and was (in my opinion... maybe not my mothers) doing more harm than good. So last night I used fingernail clippers to take all the extra skin off so it wouldn't irritate them anymore, exposing the "baby skin" underneath. Pictures below:

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Catching up my pictures

I was FINALLY able to get some pictures that I've been wanting to share off my phone! So here are some rather belated stories that I've been waiting until I had pictures, to tell.

This one is from when my brother crashed his motorcycle. Everyone was just generally stressed out because hello, all we wanted to do was go to dinner and we ended up in the hospital. My mom and I were in the room with him when they unstrapped him from that horrible back board, and we found a little treasure right in the middle of his chest!

A Dandelion!

Apparently it just so happened that when they were strapping him onto the board where he had crashed, a dandelion got strapped in too! We made sure to take pictures, and even left it there for a little while :). It definitely lightened the mood.

This one I took while driving home to Washinton from Utah. My car was stuffed to capacity and it was only a couple days after school had gotten out, but I was moving home to get ready and save money for my mission. I just happened to notice that I was hitting the 22,222 mile mark! I took it as a good omen :)

The picture below is of the horrible burn I got on Friday night. That's what you get for trying to save your sister's life! Mckenzie found one of those gel candles, lit it, and let it burn for probably at least 3 or 4 hours... enough time for tons of the gel to melt into this oily substance. We were all out of the room, and the fire alarm started going off, so the little girls ran into the room and soon they started frantically calling me. I told them to just blow it out, and they were panicky and yelling, "we can't! we can't!" So I went in and saw that not only was the wick lit, but the oily liquid had also lit on fire. The flame was too big to blow out, so I picked it up around the bottom where it wasn't too hot for my bare fingers and took it downstairs where I smothered it by covering the top of the container (still no burn). There was lots of smoke inside the container after I put it out, and I wanted to keep the smoke alarm from going off, so I stood up still covering it and took it out the backdoor to let the smoke out outside. I still don't remember exactly what happened, but once I was on the back deck I managed to touch the hot part of the candle holder, which made my hand jerk involuntarily, causing the hot oil to spill all over my left hand... at which point I made some sort of inhuman screeching sound and automatically tried to scrape the liquid (which was turning back into gel ON my hand) off. Once my mind caught up and realized what had happened I ran to the kitchen sink and put it immediately under the cold water. Apparently milk is better than cold water for burns, so we did that for awhile too (my sister and her friend were great little nurses, especially since I was one-handed). I kept it in cold liquids for more than two hours and still the pain was unbearable when it was not in some sort of cold something. Seriously... worst pain I've ever felt. Anyway, managed to go to sleep that night with my hand in front of the fan, woke up the next morning to a much improved and less painful burn (not even really blistered!), but after getting up and being outside in the warm day it started to blister, and get bigger, and bigger until I finally succumbed and went to the doctor (Saturday evening) where I took these pictures. They prescribed me some cream and wrapped it up, which honestly didn't help the pain at all, but at least it was protected. I was really hoping they'd drain the blisters because they were really hurting me. Anyway, after getting much larger than these pictures, the blisters are finally starting to deflate slightly and aren't hurting anymore :).

Believe it or not the two that are right next to each other on the upper part of my palm merged together and grew even larger than those two combined. It looks really gross. Trust me.
Finally, I was looking through a bunch of ads my mom had in her car when we were waiting for an hour to cross the border back into the US. I found out that the Tacoma Art Museum and the Museum of Glass allow free entry on the 3rd Thursday of every month during specific hours, so Emily and I went last Thursday. It was really interesting! I jotted down the names of some artists whose work I really liked at the art museum, and then we walked down the street a couple blocks to the Museum of Glass. To get to the entrance you have to walk across the bridge of glass, which goes over the freeway. It's decorated with tons of blown glass on the walls and some on the ceiling too! This picture is of the ceiling with the blown glass in it.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Our Trip to Canada

A couple weeks ago my sister Mckenzie, my mom, and I drove our grandma up to Canada to visit her husband. I know that sounds pretty strange... here's the deal. My grandma married Sid, my step-grandpa, last August. He was born in England, moved to Canada and has been there ever since... needless to say he is a Canadian citizen. Before they got married the customs officers told him there would be no problem with his visits as long as he spent at least 6 months in Canada every year, so that's how they functioned. As they said, there weren't any problems. However, unbeknownst to us, the rules change when you marry an American citizen. He was planning on applying for a green card, but hadn't done so yet, when they took a little trip up to Canada. They got into Canada fine, but when they tried to come back, they US customs officers pulled the car over, took him into an office, interogated for 5 or 6 hours, and then refused to let him across the border until he gets his green card. The whole situation has been pretty rough for them both as they have only been able to see each other on and off since last October, but with luck he'll have his green card soon. ANYWAY... we drove my grandma up to stay with him for awhile at the beginning of August, and it was a great trip! We didn't take many pictures, but I'll tell you about it nonetheless.

The first night, following the joyous reunion, we went out to eat at Ricky's, and then went back to the mini-mobile and hung out, rested up, etc. etc.

The next morning we were originally going to go mini-golfing, but it was so hot we decided to go swim at the lake instead. Sid's dog Oreo played fetch with rock after rock... sometimes she'd come up with the same rock, sometimes a different one, and everytime she would bring up a rock she'd take it to the exact same place on the shore. Sid said she likes to build a wall... which is what it looked like after she had placed about 20 rocks in a line.

Then we drove down into Chilliwack where we looked at what we thought was going to be their new apartment (turns out it's in a horrible part of town... too bad because it was really nice inside), and then we drove out to Harrison Hot Springs, which is this gorgeous town on the edge of a huge lake with sandy beaches, cute shops and cafe's, and gelato! We ate dinner, had gelato, then relaxed at the edge of the water. There are hot springs there... but they are of course on the side of the mountain, a couple hours up, so we decided to pass and just enjoy the closer, more convenient leisures.

The next day was a little cooler, so we decided to go mini-golfing at the cutest mini-golf course I have ever seen. It was designed exceptionally... there is even a legend that describes how the golf-course came about! Sid was the winner, followed by my mom (who was thoroughly upset because she got TWO holes in one), then me, then Kenzie. My grandma was our score-keeper, and she even putted for Sid a couple times! After mini-golf we went to the Cultus Lake Waterpark, which is supposedly the biggest waterpark in Canada... although that shocks me because it isn't, like, overly huge. Kenzie and I were the only ones that ended up going because at that point the adults were tired, so they gave us some money, told us to have fun, left us a car, and drove home to sit around and have juice and relax. We went in and went on all the slides multiple times, had an ice cream cone, and went on all the slides again. We even went on the half-pipe thing, on which I managed to get whiplash, and our waterpark trip ended rather swiftly after that :)

We got there on Wednesday night, stayed Thursday and Friday, and left Saturday morning. Even though we did tons, there was still lots of time for relaxing, and I was able to squeeze in the second Harry Potter book in my down time.

I actually really enjoyed it there, despite various things that I've heard. There was tons of European culture... everywhere we went there were people speaking French, or with british accents, or speaking other languages. The people were pretty nice, and it's beautiful! It's looks like we'll be going up to visit again over labor day weekend, so I hope we have just as much fun!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

dressing up is overrated

"I hated the dress. And the shoes. There was little I could do in a dress, and as for shoes, they imprisoned freedom-loving feet accustomed to the feel of the warm earth."

~Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry

Anyone else identify with this statement?

Thursday, August 21, 2008

parenting models

Fictional parents whom I want to model my own parenting after:

Stargirl: Stargirl's parents

Bridge to Terabithia: Leslie's parents

Both of these sets of parents seem to have mastered the balance between involved yet not smothering. My main goal is to avoid smothering their creativity, yet being supportive.

If you haven't read Stargirl, or Bridge to Terabithia, I recommend them!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Pictures from Our Ocean Trip

Here are some pictures of all the crazy stuff we did while down at Ocean Shores!

Flying the Kite

GORGEOUS sunset!

no comment.

proper, symmetrical jump

crazy lunatic (yes, it is as bad as it looks)

jumping picture turned levitation

fancy dinner


blowing bubbles

attempting to skim board

boogie boarding

trying to not look awkward while mom takes a fake candid.
didn't turn out that bad!
We had tons of fun, and miss it! It was great to not have any obligations, and play in the sun!

Vegetarianism and other such stories

This post is a series of "vignettes" outlining some of the hilarious happenings that have occured recently in the Hollenbaugh household.

*note: each story is in a different font to keep the stories from running together.
In my family, it's common for the younger siblings to go through this "i'm going to be a vegetarian" phase, at some point in their childhood. While none has succeeded, it continues to be a point of interest and among our young. Lately it's been my sister Mckenzie, who happens to be the most carnivorous of all of us (except for maybe my one and only brother). She's 10, so it's about time she realized what a vegetarian was and decided to try it out. My sister Katie (who also went through this phase) bet her she wouldn't survive for more than two days (funny... that's what we said to her when she tried it). In the midst of Kenzie's attempt at vegetarianism, she was with my grandma who happened to be having chicken strips for lunch. While she was eating, she noticed that Kenz was eyeing her meat, and was about as close to drooling as she could possibly be, without actually doing so (ever seen Madagascar? remember when the lion starts picturing his zebra friend as a t-bone steak?). I think she was trying to be subtle, but she was definitely eyeing that chicken. My grandmother, being the kind, thoughtful person that she is, suggested she go in a different room so Kenz wouldn't be so tempted by what she couldn't (or supposedly didn't want to) have. Kenzie refused, said she was fine, and they continued watching their television show. A few more minutes passed, and Kenzie asked if maybe she could just... hold it. Maybe she thought that the scent of the chicken would satisfy her desire for this forbidden goodness? My grandma warned her that she'd most likely eat it if she held it, but Kenz disagreed. So grandma handed over the chicken, and proceeded to the kitchen to tell Kenz what else she could have (assuming she was craving protein) without actually breaking her vegetarian streak. "We have eggs, and cheese, and..." Before she could finish, Kenzie's voice came back, "Too late. It's all over now!" Grandma looked over and saw Kenzie with only half a piece of chicken left in her hand and her mouth full. Grandma smiled, and with nothing left to lose, Kenz immediately went to the kitchen and sliced herself a big handful of ham.
The other day I was on the telephone with my sister Emily, who has Down Syndrome. She is now 17, and so we love to tease her about who she's going to date, and who she likes, etc. This particular time I had asked her if she liked anyone, just to see if things had changed since the last time I had heard anything. "Well..., um..., I..." she said. It was almost as if I could hear the shifty-ness of her eyes in her voice. She seemed to be stalling. Finally, she said in a very relieved tone, "Okay... I'm in the pantry."

Apparently she didn't want to divulge any information about her love life in a place where anyone could hear her, and the kitchen (being one of the most frequented places in the house) isn't exactly secret friendly. So she shuffled over into the pantry to tell me about this boy that she met on her bus, and who goes to her school, and who she apparently has a secret crush on.

Emily tends to be more easily prone towards illness. Her immune system isn't generally as strong as the average person's immune system, so she usually gets sick more often. At this particular time, she was suffering from some sort of respiratory bug which happened to be causing a stuffy nose, achy sinuses, and a bad mood. Kenzie is your typical ADHD child. Hopefully your getting a picture of what the two of them in the backseat together would look like in this particular situation (think cartoons... the big dog who doesn't talk much and the little dog who just won't shut up or get out of the big dog's face). Mckenzie's going on, and on, and on with all kinds of jokes and stories, etc. etc. etc. Then she decides to include Em. "Ok Emily, I have a joke. Are you ready? Knock knock!"

Emily is of course, not in a super mood, and isn't really feeling like knock-knock jokes at this particular moment, even though she normally loves them. So she takes it literally and says in the grumpiest voice she can muster, "Nobody's home."

This isn't enough to get Kenzie to back down, and she tries again, "No no Emily, you really have to do this one. Knock knock!"

Em must have felt bad, because this time she answered with an annoyed but willing, "come in". I don't remember the rest of the story, but I assume she finally complied and answered with the appropriate answer, but how much funnier are knock-knock jokes when you take them literally!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

spending my monies

After an internal battle of deciding whether or not to sign up with netflix, I finally decided to do it. I keep seeing those "first month free" ads for netflix, and thinking about how many movies I keep wanting to see but never seeing because I don't want to rent them and they're never on TV. The economical aspect of it finally got to me and I took the leap. I signed up for a plan where you get one movie at a time, and an unlimited number of movies a month, and put about 15 movies in my que (cue?). It only costs me 8.99/month, I got my first movie today, and am happy to say that I am very pleased with my decision. The movies arrive within a day of when you ordered them, and the more I thought about it, I realized that renting just one movie would cost 4.99 in itself (for 5 days... but who needs a rented movie for that long anyway?). So after getting just two movies in a month it would have paid for itself.

Also, I just finished watching the first season of Gilmore Girls that I bought when school was almost out and I needed some sanity, and I've got to say that I'm completely addicted. I don't know why, but there's something about the wittiness of it all that I love. I ordered the second season on today for only about 18.50 (which is an awesome price considering in stores it costs about $45... even at Wal-mart) which adds up to about 21.50 with shipping I think. I felt like it was a good purchase.

Yet I keep thinking... why do I keep spending money when I don't have a job right now and I'm trying to save up for a mission? Oh yeah... I worked so dang hard during the school year that I keep getting paid through August. :)

And if any of y'all need money and have an old laptop that is doesn't work or is outdated, check out I was looking for a way to get some kind of profit off this old old huge laptop that I have (or at least recycle it), when I came across this site. You answer a few simple questions, give them your address, and they quote you an amount that they'll pay you for it, then send you a box to ship your laptop back to them in with a pre-paid shipping label. After they get your laptop they check it to make sure it's in the condition you said it would be in (when you answered the questions) then they send you back a check! I looked for reviews or comments about the company and from what I found, it's not a hoax. I haven't gotten my check yet, but I just sent it back, and when I do, I'll post to let you know it's safe and that you should do it. And should I not get a check, well, I didn't want that laptop anymore anyway :)

Monday, August 4, 2008


I keep meaning to write something really witty, but I'm listening to this mellow music and I just feel like I'm floating around on clouds all day when I do that so it isn't quite working out how I'd hoped.

yet i feel the need to blog. so you will just have to suffer. hehehe. haHAHAHA. ha.

The ocean trip (minus the motorcycle accident) was great. We hung out at the beach, went swimming in the pool, slept in 'til eleven, and read all day at will. We also spent a significant amount of our time perusing the many little shops around town, and taste-testing the treats at various homemade ice cream and candy shops. We hit the surf shop (they always have awesome urban wear), as well as some cute little antique/artsy/culture shops. We decided that A.) we love shopping when you can actually buy things, and B.) the ice cream was good, but it wasn't anything that Baskin Robbins or Coldstone couldn't beat. I bought two antique rings ($3 and $7) from this African shop, as well as three books from a shop called Joan of Arte. Luckily everything was pretty cheap. I'm leaning towards the green, organic side of things lately, and so I got some books that would help me... expand my knowledge in that area. because i am soooo very intellectual. They are... The Virtuous Consumer, Imagining Ourselves, and Nature and the Human Soul.

I have pictures from the motorcycle catastrophe that I will be sharing soon, but I'm having trouble getting them from my phone to the computer. I swear I'm not technologically illiterate... they're just getting lost somewhere between my phone and my email inbox. sheesh. Until then, I will not be able to share the hilarity.

the end.