Monday, September 29, 2008

Avril Makes a Cake**

A dear friend, who will remain anonymous, came over on Sunday night and made me my first birthday cake of the season. A carrot cake. A to die for, sweet heavenly smelling, calorie loading, perfect confection of a vegetable surrounded in sugar and spice and everything nice cake.

Below you will find a picture of my dear anonymous friend.


** Line from Anne of Green Gables, The Sequel. Everything goes back to Anne of Green Gables people. If you haven't figured that out by now, I'm terribly sorry, and I can't help you...unless you set aside the next 6 hours of your time and watch the movies that changed every little redheaded girl and then some in America. My next adventure will be to go to Prince Edward Island and reenact at least half - if not all - the movie. The muddy field cow chasing part might be the most difficult. Or maybe it might be finding the perfect Gilbert... I'll let you know.

It's Time.

Click here for the Best Muppet Cake Ever.

It's time to play the music
It's time to light the lights
t's time to meet the Muppets on the Muppet Show tonight.

It's time to put on makeup
It's time to dress up right
It's time to raise the curtain on the Muppet Show tonight.

Why do we always come here
I guess we'll never know
It's like a kind of torture
To have to watch the show

And now let's get things started
Why don't you get things started
It's time to get things started

On the most sensational inspirational celebrational Muppetational

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Minnesota Tradition: Apples

The Kucera's favorite apple orchard. It's a heck of a lot more than just picking apples. Pony rides, petting zoo, bakery, beautiful trails, tractor ride. What a fun lovely day.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Oh the Irony!

From private school partying Gossip Girl bad boy...

To rugby playing goatee wearing LDS genre movie actor...


Opening weekend is now.

BONUS: it has my favorite Goonie Of. All. Times.

I love you Sean Astin!


Thursday, September 25, 2008

I Simply Remember My Favorite Things....

I have so many favorites lately!
  • Peanut butter cookie at Pastrami Jack's. Super thick and soft. Mmmmm.

  • Pedicure at Future Concepts with OPI color 'you're a pisa of work' (also my very own nickname from my dear ol Dad).

  • Jace running/falling/tripping down the stairs for seminary. Every. Morning. Like clock work.


  • Scripture mastery! Memorizing scriptures in seminary and in the dr's office waiting rooms, or in the car. Love it.
  • When my sister Emily calls me on the phone.
  • A 55 minute massage for $39.00 dollars in Eden Prairie.
  • My new CTR ring.
  • Apple orchard! Fall! Leaves! Weather!
  • Children. Especially Chloe & Jake & He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named yet.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

More Brothers Anyone?

I had the Elders over for dinner this week. Four of them. The spanish missionaries and the ones from my ward. They created a new game. It's called freak out the members during dinner. Ok not really but they came up with was this nickname game. Each of them has a "cold" nickname. For example: snowman, iceman, otter pop, thin mint.... and the insane list goes on. Whenever one of the Elders calls out a nickname, the Elder with the corresponding nickname has to stop whatever he's doing and freeze. Then, the other Elder can do whatever he wants to the frozen Elder. So last night, sitting around my table, I witnessed true "quiet dignity".** One elder put a chicken wing in the other elder's ear and the other elder got a salad bowl on the top of his head.

If I ever miss my mission (not likely), I just invite the Elders over. Or if I ever miss 13 year old entertainment (a little more likely), I invite the Elders over. Or if I ever want to show off my cooking skills... ok let's be serious.

Moving on.

Some of my fondest memories as a missionary was when we could go to dinner with the other missionaries and eat and laugh and tell stories. This one Brittish lady would invite us (up to 10 at a time) over every week to dinner. She always talked about Lady Diana and she very fiesty and entertaining. We would get a little out of control and let loose. It's not hard to do when so many missionaries get together in one room. So I guess it's just payback. However, I'm fairly certain we never played the frozen game. I don't remember having ever having any chicken wings in my ears. Maybe I can save that game for my senior mission where I sing and dance in Nauvoo.

** Quiet dignity, a common term used among mission presidents to stiffle the amount of rebel rousing. "Conduct yourself with quiet dignity and avoid loud speaking...." (Missionary Handbook, p.14).

Monday, September 22, 2008

Marla Le Pew

The only good thing about finding out about this skunk bomb is that it has diverted me from worrying about getting stuck in some Israeli prison and having my kneecaps shot out. But now, I'm not really sure what is worse: Marla sans kneecaps, or RSM (Really Smelly Marla).

Points to ponder.

Because I know my brother-in-law won't post this...

Missionary moments: Radiating joy
September 20, 2008

When Elder Garrett Barfoot and his companion were welcomed into the apartment of Julius Csoka in the spring of 2007, first impressions caused them to pause for a moment. Out of work and smoking six packages of cigarettes a day, this 40-year-old son of immigrants from Austria looked like he'd never had a happy day in his life. A list of unimaginable challenges seemed to pin him down to a life of misery. But he was willing to listen to their message, often noting he felt peace. Elder Barfoot and his companion met Julius rather unexpectedly one day while performing a weekly service project. Landscaping the grounds of the county historical society building, they noticed Julius glancing their way, as if he were curious, and approached him. During their first visit, it was readily apparent that Julius had much to overcome for baptism that included habits, addictions and physical challenges. "It was amazing to see how the power of the Atonement of Christ changed this man," said Elder Barfoot. "His constant desire to smoke was stripped from him until he lost the desire." Julius soon learned to pray, but was reluctant to read the Book of Mormon. He later confessed that he was embarrassed by poor eyesight. Occasionally, Julius contrasted his life with the happiness of the missionaries, and longed to be clean, to feel what they felt, Elder Barfoot said. During the next half year, Elder Barfoot noticed that Julius complained less and spoke kindly more often. His progress was aided by the support and friendship of the Jeff and Reva Olson family and their two children in the Prior Lake Ward. They fed him, helped teach him in their home, and offered rides to meetings. When he was finally free of smoking, he was baptized in early September 2007. Brother Csoka was a very different person from the man the missionaries first met. After being confirmed, he radiated his joy with an ear-to-ear grin. — Shaun D. Stahle,1721,500006921,00.html

I am amazed at the love and service that my sister and her husband have given to others. They always seem to be signing up for something - helping people move or giving rides to church or going to youth activities. Truly, it is a humbling thing to witness. I've seen them with Julius too. I see how he loves them. And I see that those small acts of kindness are worth every effort.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

My Bed.

I love my comforter. Instead of the down filling, I opted for the less sneezy material of some sort of synthetic fluff. At first, this was very fun and I loved curling up in my bed with all my pillows and blankets. But then, it started to really annoy me that the stuffing would gather in parts of the duvet. So I would shake the blanket to try to even it out. One day I got so sick of doing this, that I got a bright idea. I would cut a corner of the duvet and suck out the stuffing with my vacuum cleaner.

Outcome: I have a broken vacuum and pieces of stuffing all over my room. I keep finding bits and pieces around my house no matter how much I pick up. And it reminds me of a certain part in Breaking Dawn that deals with ripped pillows. However, there has never been, nor ever will be, a vampire sleeping in my bed with me.

The Joy of Malt-O-Meal




pure joy, plainandsimple.

Friday, September 19, 2008

I Think My Dentist May Have a Crush on Me...

Clickety Click here to see the thank you card I received in the mail last week.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Out of the Mouth of Babes

Cut to Jacob waking up. Wandering around the house.

Jacob: Samuel? Samuel! SAM-U-EL!!!

Reva: Jacob, what are you doing?

Jacob: I'm calling for my brother.

Reva (still pregant, baby is not out yet): Okay...

Marla: Is that a sign? Maybe you better scrap Elliott and go with Samuel.

P.S. I'm pretty sure if they did name him Samuel it would not (NOT) be because of this guy:

P.P.S. I'm just saying.

Knock Knock

Who's there?

Marla's salad.

Marla's salad who?

Marla's salad has live things in it.

Eden, Victoria and I went to celebrate Eden's birthday last Friday night. We went to a place called Spill The Wine (mildly hysterical considering the fact that none of us drink). I'm not sure what possessed me to order the seafood salad but it happened, I didn't eat half of it, and I'm still alive today to tell about it.

Good thing we didn't miss out on dessert. Can you say chocolate banana bread pudding and icecream five times fast? Ok...turns out it's not hard to say, but it was hard to finish the whole thing!

Happy Birthday Eden! I'm glad you are here.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

I don't care what party you belong to, this is hilarious.

Clickety click here for a laugh or two or three or four or... you get the picture.

Long live SNL!

And for one more - completely unrelated to anything politicky and completely random - clickity click here for my all time favorite skit by Amy Poehler. She's a genius, really she is.

Monday, September 15, 2008

One of the Good Guys

Clickity Click here for more info on just a random, good looking actor trying to make the world a better place. PS Sometimes the commandments are so easy! PPS, Verse 17.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

September 11, 2001; Remember

"On a day when buildings fell, heroes rose," Bush said.
"... One of the worst days in America's history saw
some of the bravest acts in America's history."

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

The Fringe Factor.

And ok, let's admit that this show is over the top and ridiculous, but who says LOST isn't ridiculous and over the top? I love them both anyway!

Welcome back to the screen my dear friend Joshua. It's been too long. I know you are probably missing your sidekicks Joey and Dawson, but in time you will find a place in your heart for some new friends. And I'm quite sure there's another love triangle lurking in some corner. PS Call me! I can teach you angry eyes!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Latter-day Morning Live!

Sister Kucera: Who knows what Pharisees, Scribes and Saducees are?

Students: {blink blink... blink}

Sister Kucera: Ok, let's start with Pharisees. Who are they?

Unnamed Favorite Random Student: I think they are related to the ferrets. You know, the animals...

Sister Kucera: {biting her lip} Ok... looks like we have a lot to learn this year.

Hmmm... maybe they have more in common than we first realized.


Monday, September 8, 2008

Sisters, Sisters

There were never such devoted sisters

Never had to have a chaperone "No, sir" I'm there to keep my eye on her
Caring, sharing every little thing that we are wearing
When a certain gentleman arrived from Rome
She wore the dress and I stayed home

All kinds of weather we stick together
The same in the rain or sun two diff'rent faces
But in tight places we think and we act as one
Those who've seen us
Know that not a thing could come between us

Many men have tried to split us up
but no one can
Lord help the misters
Who comes between me and my sisters
And Lord help the sister
Who comes between me and my man.

--by Irving Berlin (White Christmas)

Saturday, September 6, 2008

If I had a Schwinn...

It would look like this:
And I would look something like this:
And my bell would be super awesome like this:

...if I only had a Schwinn.

A Conversation with my Boss

Marla: ...and I booked you at this hotel and you are on this flight... blah blah blah

J: Thanks.

Marla: and blah blah blah... by the way, I'll be teaching a class on the New Testament to a bunch of teenagers at 6 a.m. every day. I just wanted to let you know.

J: I just read a study where they said teenagers are on a whole different schedule than adults. They need more sleep and become alive at much later in the morning than the rest of us.

Marla: ... (wonder where he's going with this one...)

J: Good luck with that.

Marla: Thanks.