Thursday, October 31, 2013

happy halloween!


Even though I get to be in costumes a lot for jobs (theater/film), I love getting dressed up with the rest of the world on Halloween. 

Last year, I didn't get to enjoy my costume (I had a rocking costume idea too). I was living in NYC and Hurricane Sandy stole Halloween (rude). So a year ago today, I was trying to make my way down to Times Square to work after hunkering down for a couple of days with my homies (we were so fortunate to be on the Upper West Side that wasn't affected so drastically like other areas Sandy hit). 
 All we did is play Settlers of Catan & watch movies & the weather.
 Bundling up to check out the aftermath.
I'm a banana.

You wouldn't believe the madness. You see, the subways weren't running which is major! Millions of people travel via train. So if they weren't on the trains, they have to go above ground to get around. There were very limited buses and I was lucky to get on one and get a seat. Just a few stops past mine, the bus was full (like faces in armpits full) and it would just pass stops or not open its doors. People were livid!

 Traffic was insane, because everyone was trying to get around on the streets by taxi, car, bus or walking. I had never seen that many people out on the sidewalks. It normally took me 15-20 to get to Times Square on the train and in two hours I got from 135th St to like 86th street via bus. I decided to get off and walk the 40 blocks to Times Square and to work. It was an experience. But hey, I got to go home to my cozy apartment that night and so many others were with out electricity, heat, or even a roof over their head. 

So this year, it was nice to get to have Halloween back!  Mr. G and I finally found inspiration. I had seen pictures of a production at BYU that was going for a black and white film look. They dressed the actors to look like they were in said black and white film and did their makeup as such. I decided we should copy them. 

We had to try to not open our mouths because we didn't really want to put gray makeup in our mouths and the red is a dead giveaway. That's why our mouths are closed for 95% of the pictures. 

For today, I didn't really feel like painting myself gray again (the cleanup is rough) so I went for easy and grabbed a blue wig from our costume closet (that was meant for a Katy Perry costume I thought about doing a couple years ago) and called it good. 

Anyway, I hope you have a great Halloween and get lots of candy!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

orapup commercial

Mr. G and I got to film a fun commercial a couple weeks ago for Orapup (Chancho even got a free one. Perk of the job!) Check it out below!

Mr. G in action!

Saturday, October 26, 2013

music memory

Have you ever had a song that when you hear it, it immediately brings you back to a memory/place? Well, that happened to me this morning. 

I was getting ready for work, listening to my iTunes on shuffle, trying to cover up my dark circles, and Beyonce's Countdown started. Cue flashback! All of a sudden, I was back in NYC making my way to the train (subway) from my apartment. It put such vivid images in my head of: my building, the Thai restaurant on the corner, the dry cleaners, Jin's Superette, Starbucks, the homeless man that lived in the subway stop, the crazy long escalator at the 181st St. stop, the urine stains, the trash on the tracks, the orange and yellow subway seats, "it's showtiiime", steam coming out of manholes, the wind whipping around the buildings, etc. 

 So. Much. Wind!

 Jin's Superette
Giving my best Beyonce hairography

For probably a good solid month of my life (obsess much....), I played Countdown as the first song of my soundtrack to my commute. It helped buoy me up for the day ahead, tune out the crazies, and just put me in a great mood. It's just goes to show how cool music is and how Beyonce is queen. 

Speaking of Beyonce, check out this cool tribute to Bey!

Monday, October 21, 2013

my heart is full

After posting what was a very vulnerable story about high school, I was incredibly touched by all the kind words that were sent my way. My heart wanted to burst, but instead my eyes leaked (and they are right now). A lot. Thank you all so much! Truly. I've known some pretty great people in my 29 years.

 Although I went through a lot growing up, I'm grateful for my life and my experiences. They've made me who I am and I think/hope they have helped me have more compassion for others than I would have had otherwise. Our life is what we make of it, regardless of our circumstances. 

Again, thank you for reaching out to me and expressing your thoughts and encouragement. It made my day! 
(Creepy pic and I need to do my nails!)

ridiculously fantastic apple crisp

Yesterday, I had a surprisingly good food day (go, me!). I haven't been able to cook much since we got married, because I've been crazy busy. So, it was nice that Sunday rolled around and I had time to be a regular housewife. 

Originally, I was gonna make a good old fashioned roast with potatoes, but discovered, at the last minute, that we were out of potatoes and everyone knows you can't do a roast with out its starchy friends. Mr. G suggested we do french dip sandwiches instead. I will forever be grateful for that suggestion, because they were one of the best things I've eaten. 

(homemade hoagies from Our Best Bites cookbook)
Anyway, Mr. G had picked these wonderfully tart apples from one of his properties and wanted to make a dessert with them. Since I didn't want to dirty up the kitchen too badly (because I'd already cleaned it twice) we decided to do an apple crisp instead of apple pie. Another good decision. 

Normally, I make my friend LaRene's apple crisp, but I misplaced the recipe (boo). So I went to my old pal, Pinterest and did a quick search and decided on a recipe. OMG!!!! The one I found is different kind of apple crisp that has more of a crust than a crumble and creates this delectable caramel sauce. Mr G had 3 servings, Chancho had 2, and I had 1 (trying to watch it with the treats). 
The recipe was found here and is below!


about 5 large apples, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced
3/4 c. sugar
1 tbsp. cinnamon

1 1/2 c. flour
1 1/2 c. sugar
1/4 + 1/8 tsp. (or 3/8) tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 eggs, lightly beaten (just do your best to do 1 1/2 eggs)

6 tbsp. melted butter

cinnamon for sprinkling

Preheat oven to 350. Grease a 13x9" pan.

Prepare your apples by peeling and coring them and then very thinly slicing them. Place them in your greased pan.
Stir the 3/4 c. sugar and 1 tbsp. cinnamon together, then sprinkle over the sliced apples. DO NOT MIX IN!!!! This is what creates the really awesome caramel sauce. 

In a medium bowl, combine flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder. Once combined, add the lightly beaten egg, stirring it in as best you can. It won't mix together thoroughly, and that's okay. I used my fingers to try to work the egg into the dry ingredients.

Sprinkle flour mixture topping over the cinnamon/sugared apples.
Pour melted butter over the topping.
Then sprinkle with extra cinnamon.


Bake for about 45 minutes or until filling is bubbling and topping is nicely browned.


Friday, October 18, 2013

confession: i didn't graduate high school

Until yesterday. Yep. Oh, hey Class of 2013! It should have been Class of 2002 and that's what I would tell people when they asked what year I graduated. Yes, I lied. It was just a lot easier to say, '02, and not have to delve into my whole life story to explain why I didn't graduate with the rest of my senior class. Truthfully, I wasn't extremely proud of the fact and was too prideful to admit it to many people. It's not like I wanted to be like, "Guess what?!?! I'm a big loser who didn't complete general education! Judge me!!!" And I guess since I had been accepted to BYU (who knows how......) I just let people assume I was a normal person who finishes high school before going to college. 


There were many reasons for my high school downfall. One of them being my crazy schooling before high school. I went to regular old public school from Kindergarten to 2nd grade. It was during 2nd grade that my parents joined a polygamist church. That church had a private school that was run by some of the women of the church that was an option for members. So for 3rd grade I was "lucky" and got to go to said private school. The school was a joke. Unorganized, lame, noneducational, and a waste of time/money. After one year of that, I was home-schooled for 4th and 5th grade. This was after my parents divorced (or during, I don't remember) and my mom had to work during the day. My older sister and I not only were supposed to do our school work, but we were also responsible for our baby brother. Needless to say, I didn't really do my school work, (although, I did the crap outta those cursive writing sheets. Loved them!). I remember begging to go back to public school to be with my friends and in 6th grade, it happened.  But, the damage was already done. I had gotten into some bad habits about not doing school work. 

Jr. high I did pretty well. I got A's for the most part and was OK about doing homework. Same goes for the first part of high school. It was probably the second part of my sophomore year that things headed downhill. I became more aware of all the traumatizing things I had been through throughout my life and didn't know how to handle them. The sexual abuse, the religion change, the death of a sibling, the jail time for my dad, the divorce, the multiple bastard step-dads (sorry bout it, but they were bastards.....), the emotional abandonment, etc. Woah! I think the combo of all of that, with the paragraph above, did me in. I didn't care about meaningless homework. I didn't care about going to classes that I didn't like. I didn't really care about anything (except for theater. It's where I could express my repressed feelings and probably why I was so drawn to it. I even think it's why I turned out half way normal, because I could release some of those feelings). 

Now, I can't blame it all on my circumstances. I definitely had choices and I chose poorly. And, I wasn't an idiot either (except with commas  and proofreading and I still am). When I put forth the effort I got A's. I was on the High Honor Roll the first part of high school (hey free Canyons Resort ski pass that I never used!) and I was even in AP classes (English, US History and Calculus) my senior year and did well.....when I tried or went to class. 

Fast forward to the present. 

It had always bugged me that I didn't finish high school. Even though I had a few years of college under my belt (still need to finish college, but one step at a time...). Who doesn't graduate high school?!?! 

Then one day, there was an ad on TV for Stevens-Henager College offering what they called a "Good Neighbor Initiative." Their initiative offered free classes to prep you for and pass the GED. They even paid for the test (it's 120 bucks!). It was a no-brainer. I got online and signed up. 

If you follow my Instagram, you might remember this pic I posted kinda mocking all of the first day of school pics that were happening. In reality, it was my first day of school pic, I just didn't want to say (sorry bout it). It was the first day I was going back to "high school" to finish.  
The college has you take a pre-test to see where you are and what needs some work in order for you to pass. I nailed that thing to the wall, so the instructor just had me take the post-test. Again, NAILED IT! So, they registered me for the big scary GED test without working on any sections. 

NAILED IT!!!! I even got a perfect score on the English section (I did get an A in Freshmen English at BYU so.....) and scored nearly perfect scores on Science and Social Studies. Math, I was right in the average range. It had been a long time y'all....(who still remembers how to find the y-intercept....)

Anyway, it's been a big relief for me to FINALLY have finished high school!!! That huge, nagging, negative monster is outta my brain. Some may ask why I took it if I've already completed some college. Well, I wanted to do it for some self satisfaction and to set an example to my future kids (no, I'm not making any announcement). How can I tell my future little Greggies and Rachies that they need to graduate high school if I didn't do it myself?

It may have taken 11 years, but I did it. And for that, I am proud of myself. 

PS. Major shout out to Mr. G for the encouragement and for putting up with my high school dropout self. He didn't know I was doing it until after I had signed up. 

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

roommate from the underworld

Most people have that one roommate in their lifetime that is an absolute pain to live with. Mine happens to remind me of Ursula, but more vile and just as evil. It was many moons ago living in BYU housing. I loved my place. It was a cute blue duplex on the corner of 7th and 7th right by BYU campus. The rooms were rather spacious and had a bathroom in the room. Bonus! But, they were shared rooms. Which wasn't so bad until you are sharing that spacious spot with a sea witch. 

How was she a the worst witch? Examples below. 

1.) She was the authority on everything and anything. 

She thought she knew more about working at the Hale Theater than I did. Even though she'd only been to a couple shows and I had performed there and worked in the office. Yet, she knew more than I did.......ummm. 

2.) Not willing to budge. 

One of my other roommates had just lost her dad and her mom was coming down from Idaho to visit her kids at BYU to help cure some grief and loneliness. It happened to be her mom's birthday while she was in town and they needed a place to have cake and ice cream to celebrate. This roommate asked Ursula if it would be alright if they celebrated at our large house for about a half hour. Ursula threw a fit, because she invited her brother over to watch a movie at the same time. Mom's birthday whose husband just died vs. watching a movie with your bro who lives 10 minutes away. I called her to ask her to do roommate #2 a solid and delay the moving watching for just a bit. She hung up on me.

3.) Dictator 

I was in a rehearsal for 110 in the Shade listening to the glorious voice of Audra McDonald when it was interrupted by a text message from Ursula to all the roommates saying, "DON'T BUY ANYTHING THAT NEEDS TO GO IN THE FREEZER!!!! MY FOOD WAS MOVED AND I COULDN'T FIND ANYTHING AND ENDED UP BUYING ANOTHER BAG OF CHICKEN WHEN I ALREADY HAD ONE." I responded with, "I'm sorry your stuff was moved, but you can't dictate what people buy." Her response, "DON'T TOUCH ANYTHING OF MINE EVER!!!!" Lord my load is heavy....

4.) The nastiest

When I would come home at night and open our bedroom door, I was met with a wall of stench. The foot of her bed was right next to the door and I was always greeted with the sour smell of her feet. 

Every night she had a crap-a-thon in our bathroom. The reek would leak under the door and straight into my nostrils as I was going to bed. Then she would try to cover up the smell with a berry scented spray. I named the combo, TOXIC TURD BERRY. It haunts me to this day.

One night, I was lying in bed and she came home and started changing into her pjs. I opened my eyes to see something that is forever etched in my brain. Before she put on her shirt, she pulled something outta her belly rolls, looked at it, then ATE IT!!! 

I cleaned period blood off of our toilet multiple times.

Also, I stepped in her urine once. 

Now that I've relived those horrors, I leave it at that. Although, I could go on about the mini fridge she bought, the bags of candy, and multiple freak outs. I'm prolly not the best roommate of all time either. My hair ends up in all locations, I forget to do dishes on occasion, I leave piles of stuff, etc. We all have room for improvement. Wanna share your roommate stories? 

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

anything can happen on halloween

Mr. G and I love dressing up for Halloween. This year, we are struggling for inspiration for our costumes. Hopefully we'll pull it together and knock it outta the park. Until then, maybe Tim Curry can help put us in the creative mood and help perk up your day. Enjoy!
PS. Has anyone seen my tambourine....? 

Monday, October 7, 2013

stupid good quick cinnamon rolls

I think I gave my husband diabetes when I made these. He ate 4 in about 10 minutes. I've tried a few different recipes and I think this one takes the cake, er, roll....

Anyway, for a cinnamon roll, they are fast to make. Just over an hour. Not bad, right? I found the recipe here and she has an divine looking variation on the recipe for caramel apple cinnamon rolls. I'm dying to try them! Get ready, Mr. G!

For convenience, the recipe is below. 



1 C milk (whole would be awesome)
1/4 C butter
3 1/2 C all-purpose flour, divided 
1/4 C sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 envelope instant yeast, or 2 1/4 tsp
1 egg


1/2 C sugar
1/2 C brown sugar
3 Tbsp cinnamon
1/2 C butter complete softened (not melted)

Cream Cheese Icing:

1/2 butter, softened
1/4 cream cheese
1 1/2 C powdered sugar
1-2 Tbsp milk (if needed)


Combine milk and butter in a microwave-safe bowl. Heat on high for 1 minute, then remove and stir. Continue heating in 20 second intervals, pausing after each to stir, until the butter is melted and the milk is warm to the touch but not hot. If needed, let the milk mixture sit for a few minutes until it is warm but not hot.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment, add 3 cups flour, yeast, sugar and salt. Stir by hand to combine. Add the egg and milk mixture, and beat on medium-low speed until combined. Add the remaining flour, 1/4 cup at a time, beating after each addition until incorporated. When the dough begins to form a ball and pulls away from the sides of the bowl, you have added enough flour (I used all 3 1/2 cups). Continue beating for 5 minutes on medium-low speed (speed 2 on the KitchenAid). Remove the dough hook and cover the dough with a damp towel and let rest for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, make your filling by mixing together sugars and cinnamon in a bowl until combined.

When the dough is ready, turn it out onto a floured work surface. Then use a floured rolling pin to roll the dough out into a large rectangle, about 14 x 9 inches in size. (If you want all edges to be even, you can use a pizza slicer to cut the dough into a perfect rectangle, but that's a little OCD for my taste). Use a knife or pastry spatula (or fingers) to spread the softened 1/2 cup of butter out evenly over the entire surface of the dough. Then sprinkle evenly with the cinnamon and sugar mixture (use all of the mixture! It's what makes these so tasty!)
(My stupid blurry iPhone....)
Beginning at the 14-inch edge, tightly roll up the dough. And then give the final seam a little pinch so that it seals. Use a piece of dental floss* to "cut" off the two ends of the roll (just a centimeter or so) so that they are even. Then cut the remaining dough into 11 or 12 equal pieces. (11 rolls seem to fit in a pie plate, while 12 rolls fit in a rectangular pan. I had a few more than 12).
(*To cut dough with dental floss, simply break off a piece of floss about 12 inches long. Then very carefully slide the middle of the floss under the dough to the place where you want to "cut". Then pull the ends of the floss up and cross over the top of the dough. Then give a quick tug to literally cut all the way through the dough. This is the best method for not squishing your dough while cutting it -- although the standard knife method still works too.)

Place each of the cut cinnamon rolls into a greased pie plate or 9 x 13-inch baking dish. Then cover again with a damp towel, and leave the dish in a warm place to rise for 25 minutes. 

While the dough is rising, make the icing (instructions below).
When the rolls have risen, uncover the dish. Then place on the center rack of the oven and bake at 350 degrees F for 15-20 minutes, or until the rolls are golden and cooked through. Remove and let cool on a wire rack for at least 5 minutes. Drizzle with your desired icing and serve.

Icing Directions:
Either in the bowl of an electric stand mixer, or a mixing bowl, beat softened butter and cream cheese together until combined. Then beat in powdered sugar until combined. If the icing is too thick, add a tablespoon or two of milk to thin.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

tutorial: how to make an ugly face

In an internet world full of super awesome tutorials about how to have super awesome hair, nails, make-up, clothes, homes, babies, dogs, parties, lives, etc. I noticed there was a gap in the market for How-to-make-a-super-awesome-hideous-face. Allow me to fill said gap with my own tutorial. 

1.) Start with a neutral face.

2.) Pull your chin as far into your neck as possible. 

3.) Flare your nostrils.

4.) Make your eyes as big as you can. 

5.) Open your mouth as wide as you can. 

6.) Push your jaw to the side. 

7.) For optimal hideousness, take picture from below. 

For some fun variation, try these: 

1.) Make your mouth as tight as possible. 

2.) Bring upper lip into gums.  

4.) Close one eye. Or attempt too....

There you have it! Now you can distort your face and be unrecognizable too. 

You may think I'm mocking all tutorials (which I kind of am), but I think some are pretty cool and helpful. My cousin, Melissa, has some great ones on her website, pink pistachio. Check them out if you want an actual tutorial and not my gibberish.