Posted on Apr 28th, 2012 by Allison (Music / Entertainment, Reminiscing, Reviews/Recommendations)

My friend, Paul, wrote a blog post recently of how he wastes spends his time playing games on his iPad.

It got me thinking… Growing up, I loved our family game nights: Sorry, Pit, Uno and, of course, Nertz. We played Nertz pretty fast at our house, but Nertz at Michelle’s was a serious, frenzied, “take no prisoners” affair.

Then came Scrabble, Risk, Trivial Pursuit and Pictionary. And eventually computer games like the classic Kings Quest.

Loved them all…
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Posted on Dec 27th, 2011 by Allison (Reminiscing, Whatever)

When I was a tween and teenager, I collected frogs (long before frogs became “cool”). I had, and still have, some awesome frog jewelry, figurines, and some cool stuffed frogs received from boyfriends/husbands/friends over the years. But I’ve never considered myself “collector” of anything (besides clutter or excess pounds, perhaps).

The other day I undertook the monumental task of organizing my ribbon drawer(s) and realized that I actually am a collector…

…of ribbon.

It started in my early 20s. I didn’t have much money at the time, and treating myself to a fancy ribbon now and then seemed like an affordable indulgence.
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Posted on Dec 7th, 2011 by Allison (Music / Entertainment, Reminiscing, Reviews/Recommendations)

My first crush...  Jonny QuestI’ve had a few (sometimes inexplicable) celebrity crushes over the course of my life…. mostly in my youth.

Jonny Quest (yes, the cartoon) was the first. He was followed by a string of mostly musicians… teen heart throbs like Davy Jones, Donny Osmond and David Cassidy, etc.
My 3 crushes

Yes, it’s a bit embarrassing – but admit it… you loved them too, or someone just like them in your own music era. (FYI, I fell for musicians in real-life, too…)

Anyway, during the 80s I developed a celebrity crush on Richard Page, lead singer/songwriter from the band Mr. Mister.
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Posted on Nov 29th, 2009 by Allison (Family/Friends, Reminiscing)

Hey dad –

Don’t know if you have internet access wherever you are, or if you ever check my blog if you do have internet access. But on the chance you stop by for a visit I want to say hi, wish you a happy holiday and that I hope you’re safe, healthy and happy.

I put up my tree this week and keep wishing it were flocked a little bit. If you were here I’d ask you to help me figure out how to flock an artificial tree – you always did such a great job with Kristin and dad decorate the treeour live noble firs every year on Rodeo Lane.

Ah… memories of the cold garage and the smell of wet flocking just came rushing back.

If you see this, drop me a line, send me an email, give me a call sometime, or even just leave a comment here. Let me know how you’re doing and where you’re spending your days.

Your eldest

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Posted on Oct 2nd, 2009 by Allison (Reminiscing, Style & Fashion)

I was born a platinum blond with annoyingly stubborn waves (which my mom loved, but I have fought with my whole life). I have had a love-hate relationship with my hair for over 40 years, and have prepared this retrospective for your viewing pleasure.

The ringlet years.
Platinum Blonde

The awkward years.

Cat eye glasses hair-me-butterball hair-6thgrade

The (in)famous “waterfall

The waterfall … which my mother insisted was really beautiful, but for which I was mercilessly teased (particularly by Michelle).  You can see how happy I am about the response I got. Needless to say, I only wore it once

The rain gutter (and Gunne Sax) years.

The raingutter (and Gunne Sax) years

The henna years.

The my-hair-is-long-and-I-have-no-idea-what-to-do-with-it years.

Long hair

Quite abruptly my hair decided to be dark brown (all on its own).  And very 8o’s.

80s hair

The short years.
Short hair

The perm years (scary).

The back to blonde years.

The purple month (Paul, what were we thinking???!!!).


The auburn years

Auburn Years My hair - red and short

The “I-forgot-how-much-work-short-hair-is-so-I’m-growing-it-out” transition

Growing my hair out

The bob years (with the use of giant velcro rollers and roller brush).


The embracing my inner wave (with the help of smoothing and scrunching products) years.
Big hair Natural curls

The wonderful FLAT IRON years.  
I’ve finally tamed those waves with the help of Sedu and Chi!

I love my Sedu and chi hair straighteners

Now don’t you wish some of these styles would come back into fashion? LOL…..

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Posted on Jan 23rd, 2009 by Allison (Recipes, Reminiscing)

The discussion on Erica’s blog yesterday reminded me of an open face sandwich I loved as a teenager…. and am, sadly, craving at the moment.  I say sadly because I’m on a particrularly restrictive diet for the next few weeks and cannot run out to the store and buy the ingredients to make one.   Perhaps you can make one and eat it on my behalf.


Melted Cheese and Bologna

  • 1 slice toast
  • 1 slice Oscar Meyer beef bologna
  • 1 slice Kraft American Cheese
  • Miracle Whip (not mayo)

Lightly toast the bread. Cover with Miracle Whip. Add the bologna and top with cheese. Slide into a toaster oven or under a broiler and broil until the cheese melts and just starts to bubble. Let cool slightly before eating or the hot cheese will stick to the roof of your mouth.

I supposed you could solve the hot cheese issue by making two at a time, then putting them together so there is bread on both sides….

Yes, I know, it probably sounds disgusting – but really, it’s good and is a nostalgic “comfort food” for me. I think the last time I had one of these was about 6 years ago while on Kauai with my sister. Not particularly Hawaiian…

Here are a few other low brow (or just odd) foods from my youth that I could still eat and enjoy today (but rarely do). 

  • Potato chips dipped in Jell-o.
  • Creamed tuna/corn on toast (I know, can you believe it?)
  • Kraft marshmallow creme spread on soda crackers
  • French fries dipped in a Frosty (I still do this regularly)
  • Bread and gravy.   My Grandma made this. 
  • And I’m not sure I would now, but as a kid/teen I LOVED Velveeta.  Made the best, meltiest grilled cheese sandwiches.

Have you ever tried any of these?  What are some of your low-brow, nostolgic comfort foods?

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Posted on Dec 24th, 2008 by Allison (Reminiscing, Reviews/Recommendations)

SnowstormI’m here in the middle of one of the biggest snow storms in Seattle history…   I’ve only been out twice in the past week – grocery shopping.  Today it took me nearly 30 minutes to dig my car out from under the foot of snow.   And more is in the forecast tonight – so it looks like it will be a white Christmas.  Which brings me to the point of my post – holiday movies.

I remember as a kid looking forward to the annual “Charlie Brown Christmas“, “How The Grinch Stole Christmas” and “Rudolph” specials on TV.   But there are also some great holiday themed movies.

There are classics like “White Christmas” and newer fare such as “Elf” – but I think one of my favorite holiday movies is “Love Actually“.  I know it’s not, actually, a holiday movie – but it does take place during the holidays and I really enjoy it.  

Let’s make a list and check it twice.  What are some of your favorite holiday movies?   Are there any you watch every year no matter what?  Any holiday movie traditions?

NOTE:  One of the weirdest movie traditions I ever participated in was at the Pearce family Christmas party.  The first year was ok – someone video taped it.  But the next year, our “entertainment” was watching the previous year’s taped party!!   And the following year we watched it again!!!!   Man, those Pearces know how to party…..     

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Posted on Nov 11th, 2008 by Allison (Family/Friends, Reminiscing)

Happy Birthday, Ashley Rae!

Happy Birthday, Ashley Rae!

Ashley sucked her thumb26 years ago today, the light of my life was born.   From the very beginning, Ashley had a sunny personality, spreading joy wherever she went – and her quickly earned her nickname “Ashley Rae of Sunshine.”  

She sucked her thumb, which was far more convenient thank a binkie which can get lost in the middle of the night, and stopped on her own.  She slept 7 hours a night even as an infant.  Such an easy child.   She was also bald as a cue ball until almost 2 years old – when her beautiful blonde hair came in thick and full of body.  And no obnoxious waves like her mother has.

Serious girl(Don’t you think she looks like her daughter Kennedy did at this age?)

She did give me grief a few times as a child. Twice, she got hold of a pair of scissors and cut her bangs off right to her scalp. I’m afraid I didn’t react very well.

Another time, when she was around four, she had been playing in her room and I went in to check on her. She was no where to be found. If you’re a parent who has ever throught their child was missing, you’ll understand how panicked I felt. I was frantic – called to her and searched the whole house – no response.

Ashley wants a kissI ran outside and enlisted the help of some neighbors who helped search the streets.

About an hour later, when I was about to call the police, I went into her room again and decided to search the closet again. I had looked before, but hadn’t taken everything out of the closet. I moved a little pile of stuffed animals and found Ashley sound asleep under a little pile of clothes.  

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Posted on Oct 31st, 2008 by Allison (Reminiscing)

We interrupt our regularly scheduled programming (travel photos) to bring you a costume parade! As you peruse these costumes from halloweens yore, keep in mind my mother made all of them (except 2).

1969… Don’t the cat-eye glasses just make the genie outfit?

Halloween 1969


Halloween 1976I really don’t know what we are, but after these picture were taken, Michelle, Jeri (her sister) and I went driving around with flour in pantyhose, swinging them out of a car at people trying to cover them with flour powder. It didn’t work, but we laughed a lot nonetheless. Oh, and if you guessed my mom didn’t make this outfit, you’re right.

I think this was also around the time that Jeri had me make prank phone calls to some guy asking him to bring a 3 bean salad to a dance (or something). Maybe Michelle remembers it better….

Jumping ahead…. to the 80s…. aren’t Brandon & Ashley cute?

Daffy Duck and a genieBrandon is Daffy Duck – and I wish I could locate the picture of him from the side so you could see his tail poke out. It was really cute. And poor Ashley is stuck in my pathetic attempt to create a genie costume for her. She doesn’t seem to mind, but it’s an embarrassment after the professional costumes my mom whips up.

Princes and the leopard Genie & Leopard

And saving the best for last….

1982. I am a VERY pollinated flower, here with the bee that pollinated me. Ashley was born about 3 weeks later.

A pollinated flower Mr. Bee

I burst out laughing every time I look at this photo. Mostly because I remember Mark wore it to work at Zions bank…. and he rode the bus to get there, with briefcase in hand. For months afterward, customers referred to him as “Mr. Bee.”

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Posted on Aug 1st, 2008 by Allison (Music / Entertainment, Reminiscing)

I don’t know what the heck happened to trigger this, but for the past day and a half I haven’t been able to get this song out of my head.   Any suggestions???

However, in my head it not quite as performed in the clip – what I’m hearing is some mormon general authority’s middle-aged daughter perfoming this as a solo at general conference years ago (ET Benson, I think).  That she was a GA’s daughter is the only explanation I can think of for why she was given a solo spot. Oh, the warbly swooping up to each note was so very painful

Perhaps you heard it and shared my pain…

Perhaps you’ve heard me imitate/mock it over the years…

Perhaps you are laughing right now thinking I deserve this.   Well stop it – because when you heard me imitate her you laughed too.

Please offer new song suggestions for my brain – this is cruel and unusual punishment!


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