Friday, December 21, 2007

Addictions, Advice, and Appreciation

The No.2 Breakfast Meal from McDonalds. "I wish I could quit you."
Need some help putting together an outfit for your next Christmas party? Clickety here for Lori's wardrobing advice for dressing for the holidays.
Thank you to Hairyshoefairy, SoDak Angel, Cutie and Cutie's Mom, Flakey Sarah, Aubrey, Mom2princess, Tori, and E-dub for the Christmas cards and goodies you sent. You all are great and it made me smile. Thanks again! Smooch!!!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Confessions of a 24 year-old virgin

My older sisters were full of advice about sex. Some helpful, some practical, and some was just to test my gullibility. They had gone through it before and wanted to help make my transition from vestal virgin to sex kitten a smooth one, as well as get a few laughs in for themselves.

Their advice was three-fold: 1) Get on the pill three months before your wedding. 2) Spend your wedding night in your own home. And 3) whatever you do, don’t fall off the goat!

Click here to read more at Mile High Mamas!

Monday, December 17, 2007

You, Me and New York City

Thanks Fashionista for coming down to NYC from Boston to spend the day with me.
Fellow Bollywood Super Fan Elizabeth W and Me at my first screening of a Bollywood film in a movie theater. "Ommmmm Shanti....Ommmm!"

Carronin and Me at NBC Studios

B. and Me in Time Square

SoDak and Me with the angels in Rockefeller Center

Maria was here. The graffiti on the sign in the subway says, "My grandbaby father be locked up AGAIN!"

Carrot and Me overlooking Central Park
Elastic and Me in Grand Central Station

NCS and Me in Saks Fifth Avenue

Millie and me in Rockefeller Center in front of the famous Christmas tree

Aubrey and Me at the Metropolitan Museum of Art

__________ and Me with New York's Finest

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Small town girl, big city dreams.

I've had my passport stamped a few times, but I have never been to New York City. Secret Agent Man is currently on assignment across the river in New Jersey. He's flying me out to spend a long weekend with him in the Big Apple. I try not to get involved in his super secrety third world dictator-toppling missions, but the chance to stand under the Time Square webcam and wave hi to all my bloggy friends (More on that to come.) was too good to pass up. We also have tickets to see The Lion King the musical on Broadway. I'm glad the strike is over. I didn't anything standing in the way of me getting my hakuna matata on!

Do you have any advice for this small town gal's visit to the city that never sleeps?

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Nine years later, I'm glad I didn't make a run for it

Click here to read my latest column for the Charm page of The Daily Sentinel.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Christmas, Anniethology Style

I believe that whenever you are decorating it is good to have a theme. Something to focus your ideas, colors, and choices. This year I wanted to have a Florentine Christmas theme, as in Florence, Italy. Here are some pictures from whence I drew my inspiration.

Somehow I needed this theme to work with what I already had in my home. I decided to go with a non-trad color of roses to blend in the furniture. That coordinated the Florentine colors with the ones that already existed in the room.
The silk roses and ornaments came from Michaels. My favorite ornaments are the heart-shaped mirror ornaments. I wish I had more. The organza scarf on the banister was purchased at Real Deals Home Decor.

My Florentine Christmas theme even filtered into the type of bedroom furniture I chose. The furniture was purchased at Ashley Furniture. The ivory down comforter is from Herbergers and the embroidered sheets were on clearance at Kohls.

"Are you kidding me? It's ridiculous. Who lives here? The Pope?!"

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Posting means admitting I'm home.

We had an excellent vacation. I can't believe it has been a week since my last post. I haven't taken a week off blogging since...well...ever. My blogging buddies may have seen me lurking around their blogs for a couple of days. I would have commented, but then I would have to post, and well, you know how it goes. Although I have been home since Sunday night, I have yet to unpack our suitcases. I couldn't make it a priority, I had a Christmas tree to decorate! (Pictures and decorating tips to come!)

While in Las Vegas the children met their maternal grandfather's idol. They took to him pretty well. They loved it when he called them little hound dogs!
I had a nice visit with No Cool Story and her Daily Hero in the lobby of our hotel. She was so nice to sit there and listen to me talk about myself for an hour. I love her so much!

(NCS and Annie not pictured.) :(

Also during our vacation I died and went to heaven. In case you didn't know, heaven is called Victoria Gardens in Rancho Cucamonga, CA. I went to Anthropologie and bought this...

Then we went to kid heaven, a place called John's Amazing Pizza Emporium and Puke Fest. Even though we shamelessly gorged ourselves, luckily, there was no puke to be had. Not even after the spicy peanut butter pizza and a few turns on the bumper cars. The steel-lined Payne stomachs prevailed again!

Despite newly sparked fires in the hills Malibu, as one reporter put it, "Where kids gather and build small campfires," (What? You can say b!?ch on TV but you can't say kegger?) our last day in la-la land looked like this...

So, now my California dreaming has come to an end and it's back to life as normal. Admitting your vacation is over can be a real kegger.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Bring on Thanksgiving!

It's taken us awhile, but we have finally done it. The last of the Halloween candy has finally been eaten. Bring on the turkey for the stuffing!

I'm going to be away from my computer for a few days. Our holidays travels will take us to California, via Las Vegas, where we will be meeting with the Queen of Teh Internets, No Cool Story. Can you believe it? Not even being aware of the other's travel plans we made reservations at hotels less than a mile away from each other! Try not to hate me because you are jealous.

I will not leave you completely Annie-less. Check out my Thanksgiving column on Thursday in *Charm* at, the website of The Daily Sentinel.

Have a great holiday!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

The Hairy Legs Report

Our assignment at Mile High Mamas this week was to write about why we started blog and share one of our favorite posts. If you have been with me since the beginning, you may remember The Hairy Legs Report. If not, it's new to you! Clickety here to be shocked and amazed!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Anonymous Comment Day

I'm not above taking an idea and calling it my own, i.e. Good Mail. Just imagine that you are in the bathroom stall of your junior high. You have a black, permanent Sharpie and twenty minutes before the hall monitor comes looking for you.

Anniethology Upgrade/Downgrade

Upgrade: I'm wearing acrylic nails again for the first time since I was a single gal on the scene.
Downgrade: I can't open my own soda cans and more tyoza typos.

Upgrade: I have my milk delivered to my door in glass bottles.
Downgrade: Sometimes my order gets mixed up with Amy Payne's order and she drinks skim instead of whole. Amy, try the chocolate milk sometime. You can thank me later.

Upgrade: My new treadmill is now in working order.
Downgrade: Now I have to use it.

Upgrade: I've purchased a new bedroom set.
Downgrade: The delivery guys will only bring in the new set, they won't carry out the old set.

Upgrade: Secret Agent Man is home for a whole month.
Downgrade: He wants to be fed. Can you believe that? A hard-working man expects his stay-at-home mom/wife that he provides all these upgrades for to cook and clean for him? How dare he?!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Bring in the Professional: Dress Coat Edition

My sister, Lori, is a wardrobe consultant living in Boston. As a favor to me, she contributes quarterly, fashion-focused posts to my blog. Here is a special edition on the often over-looked wardrobe staple; the dress coat.

I have a coat confession. My coat closet is filled to capacity with all types of coats: ski jackets, leather jackets, trench coats (short and long), vests and denim jackets. I live in New England so it is appropriate that I have several different types of coats. The one item that stands out as an eyesore in my closet is my dress coat. Circa 1996, black, double-breasted, ankle-length with shoulder pads that make me look like I play for the Patriots. Purchased during my baby era and now two sizes too big, sound familiar? Sadly it’s not even that warm. The winter wind roars right up the hem and out the collar. If you can relate to any of this, it’s time to buy a new dress coat.

Whether you need to replace your old one or add this essential staple to your wardrobe, here are some quick tips to help you next time you are shopping for a new dress coat:

Knee length coats look great on women of all heights. If you are on the petite side, do not wear a coat hem past your knees.

Belted coats are classic and sophisticated and ideal for a range of body types. The belt accentuates or creates a waist.

Double-breasted dress coats are warm and look great with a menswear pant or white blouse. Note: this is not the best style for curvy/busty types.

Princess cut is popular and has a very feminine feel. It fits close to the body and flairs out at the bottom. This style is great for pear shapes or women with bigger busts.

Color is up to you, but if you plan to wear it often and a long time stick to a classic neutral like black, charcoal, navy, winter white, camel, or even red.

Fabric is key for warmth and durability. Wool is a classic favorite, but if you are sensitive to wool look for cashmere blends, camel hair, and polyester blends. Denim and Gortex are not appropriate fabrics for a dress coat.

Your coat is the first impression you will make. Make it your best possible impression by updating your look with a figure flattering dress coat. When wearing your Sunday best, don’t be confused for a linebacker. Leave your jean jacket or puffer coat behind. Reach for a knee length wool blend coat to top off your dressy ensemble.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Are you a Mile High Mama?

If you contributed to the list of 100 Reasons to Love Blogging that I compiled a few weeks ago, your name will appear today on the Mile High Mamas blog, sponsored by the Denver Post. Readers also have an opportunity to click the link to the original post and visit your blog. Don't be surprised if you get a few new readers from the great state of Colorado! Woot!

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Parent Experiment #65

Clickety here to read my latest, never-been-seen-before post at Mile High Mamas! Maybe my hours of watching the Dog Whisperer and the Super Nanny have paid off. I've finally realized that before I can change my kids, I have to change myself.
Also, today is the day my column comes out in the Daily Sentinel. Pick up a copy or clickety here to read it online, but wait until after the lunch hour. That is when they update.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

If I'm being honest...

...when I get a forwarded e-mail, I usually delete it without even reading it first. But, every once in a while I get something really good. My good amazing friend Tama, forwarded me poem by Maya Angelou. I love poetry. Thanks Tama!

enough money within her control to move out
and rent a place of her own, even if she never wants to or needs to...

something perfect to wear if the employer, or date of her dreams wants
to see her in an hour...

a youth she's content to leave behind....

a past juicy enough that she's looking forward to
retelling it in her old age....

a set of screwdrivers, a cordless drill, and a black lace bra...

one friend who always makes her laugh... and one who lets her cry...

a good piece of furniture not previously owned by anyone else in her

eight matching plates, wine glasses with stems, and a recipe for a
meal, that will make her guests feel honored...

a feeling of control over her destiny.

how to fall in love without losing herself.


how to quit a job, break up with a lover, and confront a friend without
ruining the friendship...

when to try harder... and WHEN TO WALK AWAY...

that she can't change the length of her calves,
the width of her hips, or the nature of her parents..

that her childhood may not have been perfect...but its over...

what she would and wouldn't do for love or more...

how to live alone... even if she doesn't like it...

whom she can trust, whom she can't,
and why she shouldn't take it personally...

where to go...
be it to her best friend's kitchen table...
or a charming inn in the woods...
when her soul needs soothing...

what she can and can't accomplish in a day...
a month...and a year...

Update: My un-official, unpaid, yet appreciated fact checker Mr. Badati2ud just sent me this. I'm not the only one that got snowed. I lifted the text from a website ending in .edu. Original Maya or not, I like it all the same.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Rest in Peace, Penny #2

She was a good hamster while she lasted. I believe the cause of death was a fall from the cage wall or an upper deck. She had shone no sign of illness. The first hamster looked sick for a few hours and buried itself in it's little house. I found Penny #2 out in the open, near the frontdoor of the cage. It didn't even occur to me to lie to the kids, again. I told them right away. Mini Me cried (The Mourner). Boy #1 volunteered to call and tell S.A.M (The Informer). Boy #2 volunteered to pick up the body and put it in a box (The Undertaker). Then they asked for another pet that wasn't so fragile. ::Sigh:: I loved Penny #2. I'll miss her.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Boo Project 2007

Click here, if you dare, to see me and 42 other participants in Boo Project 2007!

Friday, November 2, 2007

Great week for Good Mail!

Thank you Elasticwaistbandlandy, Jen, and E. Dub for the Good Mail I received this week! Ya'll spoil me.

I don't even dare try to photograph everything Elastikins sent me. I don't want to make ya'll jealous. Although, she did introduce me to the grown-up version of Junior Mints, Mrs. Fields Chocolate Mint Sticks! Yummy and sophisticated.

E.W. made good on our Thursday Swap Day. She sent me the video we swapped and some extras. My, oh my, she is an over-achiever. I know Carronin is going to steal that Motels Greatest Hits cd from me.

Jenmomof 4 is super talented and crafty. She sent me some personalized notecards. You have to check out her design blog. (Link above.) Was that Amy Butler paper you wrapped my cards in, Jen? Wow!
My Good Mail tree runneth over!

Shhhh! Don't tell my kids where I hid their candy. They'll never think to look under my desk! MUUWAHAHAHAAAAAA!

Thursday, November 1, 2007

And just like that... October is over.

Despite my love for all things October, I am a little relieved to see it go. It was a busy, fun-filled month. We couldn't have asked for better weather last night. No jackets required over the Halloween costumes. Somehow Mini Me ended up with more candy than "her boys". I think people must of have seen that cute little Indian fairy and gave her two fistfulls of candy, instead of one.

So, now it's November. I have two big events coming up.

I was decompressing on my couch Sunday evening after a very successful Primary program. It couldn't have gone any better. The children did a wonderful job. Then, the phone rang. It was the Stake President. I thought, "Oh crap! What mother called and threatened to leave the church because her kid didn't get a part this year?" Thankfully, that was not the case. He was just calling to ask me to give a 10 minute talk at Stake Conference. Speaking in front of 500+ people stresses me out less than preparing a program for 91 children, because my success or failure depends solely on me and not 91 children and their well-meaning mothers. Wish me luck.

We will also be spending Thanksgiving in L.A. with Secret Agent Man's family. We are all excited. It will be the first long distance trip for the Pacifica and more importantly, I DON'T HAVE TO COOK! WOOT!

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

My Halloweeny Post

I dare you to click here to read my Halloween post at

Mile High Mamas.


P.S. Cheetah girl got robbed!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Returning Netflix with J. Lo and Mark Anthony

Again, I warn you! You will not get this 5 minutes of your life back! I promise this is the last one.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Anniethology Lifestyle Tip #88

Don't forget your sister's birthday. I like send Amazon gift cards to my out-of-town people. It's a great way to send your love from the comfort of your office chair and they are always appreciated.

Carronin turns 45 on Monday! Be sure to go by and wish the Self proclaimed expert on the right and wrong way to do things from No-Bake Boil Lasagna noodles to Yetti defense training, a very happy birthday!

Friday, October 26, 2007

Channeling June Cleaver for the modern mom

Read today's post at Mile High Mamas. Click here.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Check out my new $800.00 coat rack!

We bought this "treadmill" at Sp*rts Auth*rity last Saturday. Secret Agent Man went above and beyond what I expected him to do by buying the one with a TV and fan! The salesdude was very knowledgeable and did an exhaustive job explaining the return policy and extended warranty (hhhmmm.) We got it home, hauled it upstairs, set it up. The TV is awesome, there is even a cable hook up. The fan works great. It even takes my pulse. But, the dang thing won't move. The tread mill part doesn't work! But, I'm having a great time watching TV standing up and taking my pulse with cool air blowing on me.

After an hour on the phone with a customer service rep who has never actually seen one of these in real life, they are going to send us a new mother board...via USPS...that we can replace ourselves... by just connecting twenty simple 7 to 10 days when it arrives.

I can't even begin to tell you how frustrating it is to spend that kind of money on something that doesn't work!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

4 1/2 minutes in the car with me and Mary J.

Warning: You will not get that four and half minutes back!

Monday is the best night of television.

I have to admit to crying when Marie fainted on DWS last night. I watched this clip over and over on my DVR. You can hear her panting in the background before she took a dive. I called mymomma and Carronin in a panic. "Oh no! Not Marie!" I'm glad she's okay. Of course she fainted. She is working so hard, dropping weight like crazy, and they have her vacuumed sealed in that costume. I LOVE YOU MARIE! I'M THERE FOR YOU! BUT,I hope I grow up to look like Jane Seymour.

Mel B. should dance to her own songs more often! Spice Girl reunion? I'm sure someone out there is excited about it.

Did anyone else watch Samantha Sometimes? I've never been a big Christina Applegate fan, but this show was pretty funny.

Was anyone else suckered into watching the Bachelor to watch "the biggest emotional breakdown in Bachelor history?" It wasn't that dramatic. She didn't faint or nothin'. Sure her mascara ran and she was totally dillusional about the guys feelings for her, but I was expecting her to be carried off in a straight jacket. No such luck. You know these Bachelors have certain rules about what they can and can't say to the girls. Despite that, he tried to let her know that he thought of her as just a friend, but she wasn't hearing it. She heard what she wanted to hear. She needs to get a copy of that book, He's Just Not That Into You. Men are not that difficult to decipher if you just listen.

I still have two more shows to watch. I have Chuck and Heroes recorded. Hooray for Monday and DVR!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

A Sunday Devotional from the Payne Twins

Rarely seen on this here blog, the Payne Twins re-enact one of their favorite stories from the scriptures.

Having repented of their murderous ways The Anti-Nephi-Lehies bury their weapons of war and refuse to take up arms to defend themselves against their enemies. (Read the story here.) As a result of their sacrifice, more than a thousand souls were converted to Christ.

After battling for days, I had enough of the plastic swords and the crying and fighting that came with them. Instead of just taking the swords away, S.A.M. and I decided to make it a "teaching moment." Initially, they weren't too excited about burying their swords, but they soon got into spirit of it.
Update: The boys super secrety plans (They think I don't know. Of course I know! Moms know everything!) to dig up the swords on Halloween have been thwarted by the family dog. She dug them up this morning and had her way with them. Buwahahahhhaaaaaaaa!