Tuesday, December 18, 2012

interesting Christmas facts about me

For an activity during our team holiday luncheon at work, we were asked to answer some questions about ourselves. Of course, I was trying to be clever (maybe I succeeded; maybe not), but every one of these answers is true:

What is your favorite Christmas tradition?
The Jensen family Christmas party. You only miss it if you are really sick. People even fly “home” to Sanpete from NY and CA. It lasts about three hours. That’s it. People fly/drive in from everywhere for a three hour dinner of turkey and Grandma June’s Pink Fluffy Jello Stuff. (Yes – that’s the dish’s actual name.)

What was the best Christmas gift you ever gave?
Tickets to a Dallas Cowboys game. I hate the Dallas Cowboys. Mortal enemies of the Philadelphia Eagles. This gift proves that I really DO love my spouse.

Where were you born?
In the ONLY hospital for more than 20 miles in every direction. This doesn’t sound like much, but it’s a big deal when said hospital only had about ten rooms (including x-ray, reception, and “surgery.”)

How many brothers and sisters do you have?
Three brothers and one sister

What is your middle name?
Arlene. I’m named after my mom who was named after her dad who was named after his grandpa who was named after his uncle who was named after… oh you get the point. (My grandpa, by the way, was also best buds with my bosses grandpa! We didn't know this until after both grandparents were deceased, and we had been working together for about 12 years!

What is your favorite Christmas food?
See above. Grandma June’s Pink Fluffy Jello Stuff.

What High School did you attend?
North Sanpete. And, let’s be clear about this: As my boss already knows, it’s pronounced SANpete, definitely not sanPETE. Emphasis on the SAN, people…. Additionally, it’s not named for Saint Peter (like San Francisco or San Mateo). It’s for Chief Sanpitch, a Ute leader in central Utah who was brutally murdered by Dolf Bennett in 1866.
Oh – North Sanpete is home of the Hawks, by the way.

If you won a million dollars what one crazy thing would you buy for yourself?
A new pressure cooker. Or a goat - a milking one.

What is your favorite Christmas show?
Die Hard. Oh, just kidding!
Probably Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer because I really like the song “Put One Foot In Front Of The Other.”
Next in line would be The Year Without A Santa Clause because I really think that the Snow Miser is attractive.

If you could have a super power what would it be and why?
The ability to stop teenage suicide by letting kids know that they really ARE loved and it really DOES get better

What is your favorite Christmas Carole?
“Angels We Have Heard On High” but only when it’s performed by Peter Breinholt (listen to it here.
Otherwise, anything that the boys want to sing

What is your favorite vacation spot?
The area between Rolfson and Cleveland Reservoirs in the mountains of Sanpete County
Hawaii is a close second

What are you afraid of?
Not particularly fond of snakes
The “Balls” obstacle at Tough Mudder
A house fire with us inside
Death of a child
Not being a good enough mother
Dying before my kids realize/understand how much I love them
More out-of-pocket medical costs for the only un-insured person in our family
HOW IS THIS A HOLIDAY QUESTION? I’m totally depressed now!

What was the best Christmas gift you ever received?
My high school class ring. It wasn’t anything fancy, but for my single mother on a very low income, it represented true sacrifice not only by her but by the rest of the siblings who didn’t get much that year.

What is your favorite pastime / hobby?
Canning, preserving, jam making

Where is your favorite store to shop?
NONE – not even online – I despise shopping
UNLESS it is for fresh fruit with which I can make new kinds of jam – in that case, it is the farmer’s market

If you could spend Christmas with a historical figure, who would it be?
Rick Dees and His Cast of Idiots – writers and performers of the mega-hit “Disco Duck” back in 1976
Susan B. Anthony – I would ask her how she managed to stay positive and encouraged during the very long struggle for equal rights because I’m getting very tired of the status quo for LGBT citizens in Utah…

Who is your favorite cartoon character?
If you were to judge by the sheer number of movies that we own, you would guess Thomas the Tank Engine. However, that would be incorrect. Dr. Gru would probably be my current favorite. Or, the Snow Miser (see above – he’s so sexy).

What was the last book you read?
Honestly? Prancer by Stephen Cosgrove. It’s a riveting yet heartwarming tale about Jessica, the daughter of an impoverished farmer, who still believes in Santa Claus. When she comes across a real live reindeer with an injured leg, it makes perfect sense to her to assume that it is Prancer, whose likeness had fallen from a Christmas display in town. She hides him in her barn and feeds him cookies until she can return him to Santa.
If you’re talking about GROWN UP books, I’m currently finishing up a gripping story of suspense and possibility called The Lean Startup. And, by gripping, I mean that it's required reading for me and my team of coworkers.
Otherwise, the last full (grown up) book that I read (simply because I wanted to) was Identity by Milan Kundera. It was weird.

Which of the seven dwarfs are you most like and why?
Is there one named Bossy? No? How about Opinionated? No?

Tell us what you have done this year that would make Santa not come to your house?
The list is long and includes the following:
I simply throw my shoes in the bottom of my closet without organizing them.
Sometimes, I store my contacts without properly cleaning them.
I still haven’t sent my holiday cards or even done my holiday shopping.
I have never taken my kids to Kiddie Kandids (or other photo places like that).
I buy pie crusts instead of making them from scratch [gasp!].
I told the boys in all seriousness that they are not allowed to get married until they are 30 and not allowed to have kids until they are 35 – this way, if they get married “early,” they will still be adults. (My logic? If I tell them that they can get married when they are 18 or 19 and they get married “early,” that means 16 or 17!!! I set the standard high so that there is plenty of wiggle room and growing-up time.)

What award or achievement have you received that you are most proud of?
My boys (of course), but since that is the same thing that almost everyone else is going to say, here are some other awesomely cool things that I’m proud of:
I drank the recommended eight glasses of water every single day last week
I haven’t cursed yet today
1st place in the machine transcription category at the 1987 FBLA business meet
My Honolulu Marathon t-shirt (from my first-ever marathon in 2002 – I still haven’t worn it and probably never will – I’m thinking of framing it)
My Tough Mudder headband (because I didn’t die on the “Balls” obstacle)
My Sapper Joe finisher’s medal (because the 3700 feet of elevation gain is almost entirely in the first four miles, and it was freakin’ hard!)
My MBA (because doing homework at 11pm and 3am wasn’t fun and completing everything without missing any family time wasn’t easy)
My 16+ year relationship (because it’s hard to stay together when the world around you [politicians, religions, neighbors, family] tell you daily that you aren’t worth it and/or that you’re going to hell)

There you go. That's me - at least part of me.

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