Thursday, July 30, 2009

Genetics and Giveaways


I have a couple confessions to make...some of them might make you mildly uncomfortable. Not my-clothes-are-too-tight-and-then-I ate-a-foot-long-super-sub uncomfortable...but a I-can't-believe-a-grown-mother-of-five-would-admit-this kind of uncomfortable. If you are queasy in any way, and like to imagine that you know everything about me without knowing my deepest, darkest secrets (AKA "Friend Denial"), you are hereby excused to skip this post. If you are intrigued...please read on.

Okay...the first confession is so deep and dark that not even my husband knows it...although he has serious suspicions...

I love comic books.



One of my greatest secret ambitions is to attend Comic Con...IN COSTUME. I can speak nerd with my fellow comic geeks and feel totally connected and fulfilled. I could peruse panels and buy vintage stuff and role play ALL WEEKEND LONG. I could admit (without fear of retribution) that I belong to several on-line forums regarding anime, comics, and movies/TV shows that relate to anime or comics. I could be hyper and laugh my very realistic evil girl laugh make new friends who GET me.

I could never admit this to Jason. He would be horrified, and want me to seek therapy. So I'll just tell the whole blog-o-sphere instead...purging my soul from the secret while remaining confidant that he'll never know (He doesn't read my blog. Sad, huh?).

The other confession is directly related to the first one...because I believe that my comic book obsession has given birth to the following belief:

I believe that I am not all human.

I think that an an early age, my parents volunteered me for some freak top secret government genetic splicing experiment where they melded human DNA with animal DNA in an effort to create a super species of person with special powers to unleash on a world hell bent on destroying Democracy and the Great American Way.

There's only one problem.
My parents obviously procrastinated on bringing their darling baby girl in...and by time I was "volunteered", most of the truly cool animal splices had already been handed out.

So I missed out on being CheetahGirl with super speed, and RhinoGal, who is equipped with super strength and bullet-proof armor was already taken. I couldn't even be AquaChick and telepathically communicate with marine animals.

Nope...I got the "leftover" DNA...

I was spliced with a Magpie. And my only super power is the inhuman desire that attracts me to sparkly things that I then capture and horde in my nest.

It's not only a completely unimpressive super-power, it's also a bit of a liability, as I am rendered pretty much powerless by the sight of anything remote glittery, sparkly, or otherwise classified as "bling". It means it takes real willpower not to Be-Dazzle every piece of clothing in my wardrobe. And if I ever AM out in my cape and tights, fighting for the freedom and safety of my fellow citizens...all a bad guy has to do to completely zap my power is flash a piece of costume jewelry at me...and there I a deer in the headlights...drooling stupidly over $20 worth of plastic gems while they steal the codes for the nuclear devices at NORAD.

I've all but been kicked out from the Super Human Alliance. They never call. They never e-mail. And I didn't even get an invitation to this years SuperHero Cocktail Party.


I've worked feverishly over the years to control my urges. I avoid malls for fear of being caught in a trance outside Zales. I use a blindfold to get me past the jewelry departments at Target and Wal-Mart. And I have never gotten into "beading". caution couldn't last forever. I have a friend who lives in Vegas...and she has started a business selling Lia Sophia jewelry. She kept writing me and telling me how great it was...and how it changed her life...look for yourself!! Could YOU resist such an impassioned speech?

Hi All,
I could tell you that I started my own lia sophia business because I wanted a challenge, or because I was motivated to become a fabulous businesswoman. But I'm not going to lie to you – I joined because I loved the jewelry! When the Advisor at the first show I attended saw how many pieces were on my wish list, she told me the secret to having it all was doing what she does. So yes, I became an Advisor to get great discounts on the hottest jewelry. But what I didn't realize at the time was that I would actually earn an income while shopping with the girls! I am building a business and doing it right along side my other daily activities. I am a living example that you CAN mix business with pleasure. Every step of the way, lia sophia rewards me for my success, with trips to fantastic places like Hawaii and the Caribbean, free jewelry, and much more. It's hard to believe what started out as a desire to wear great jewelry has turned into a business I truly love, but that's exactly what happened. I used to be afraid of public speaking, you couldn't pay me enough to get up in front of a crowd and speak; but now I've come out of my shell. I feel that I'm a better person for overcoming my fears of public speaking and surprisingly it was easy because I love the jewelry, the way lia sophia stands behind their product with their Lifetime Replacement Guarantee, and most of all I love what I do because I believe in it. YOU TO CAN HAVE IT ALL!!

Sunni Shoemaker
lia sophia Advisor
(702) 810-9816 or (702) 202-1048

I, of course, am a sucker, and one day, in a stupor of weakness, I looked at her site.


My eyes were GLUED to the screen. It took 3 of my children, a crowbar, the the promise of dark chocolate covered cherries for me to break away from the on-line catalog.

My will having been broken, I found myself drawn there again...and again...and again.

And the only way I could fix the problem was to SHARE the problem.

I am doing this by giving away a gorgeous necklace called "Meadow" (it's 16-19" long). It makes me think of late summer...the pretty green river shell, and then there is all those sparkly reminds me of my recent vacation to Zion National Park...with all the beautiful vermilion and orange striped canyons, the crystal rolling river cascading over the grey and green stones, smoothing them down to shiny black pebbles, the majestic green pines, and the expansive robin egg blue sky.

It would look GREAT with one of those long peasant skirts and a breezy top, wouldn't it?

Anyway...I'm giving this away in hopes that it will ease my Magpie burden a bit...

All YOU have to do is go on her site at and look at all the amazing and beautiful jewelry she has. Pick your favorite piece, and leave a comment about it on this blog in the Comments section.


Contest runs from July 30 to August 14.

One entry per person.

Leave your comment with the name of the piece that you most admire in the Comments section of the blog, along with your e-mail address so I can contact you if you win.

Additional entries will be made if you:

1) Remind me that you are a follower or add yourself as a follower

2) Blog about this giveaway on your own blog (you have to e-mail the link so I can check up on you!)

3) Think of an AWESOME Super Hero name for my type of power, and leave it in the comments section.

That's 3 additional entries to improve your chances!!

All additional entries must be in the form of a SEPARATE COMMENT (also with your e-mail...I'm too lazy to scroll around and look for it).

Oh!! And I have more good news!! I called Sunni to let her know about this giveaway, and she shared that if you actually BUY something between now and midnight August 2, you can take part in a special sale that allows you to buy ONE item at full price, and get TWO MORE items at half price. Or, if you're like me, you can buy TWO ITEMS at full price and get FOUR ITEMS at half price. If you do that, she'll take an additional $10.00 off your order!!

So, if you do the 3 item deal, you pick out 3 pieces you LOVE, you pay full price for the LEAST EXPENSIVE ITEM, and then get the two other MORE EXPENSIVE items half off!!! It's like going to Nordstroms, buying a pair of socks for full-price, and getting two pairs of designer jeans 1/2 off!!! You do the same thing if you buy 6 full price for the two LEAST EXPENSIVE items, and get your four MORE EXPENSIVE items 1/2 off, PLUS an additional $10.00 off your whole order!! Isn't that cool?!?!?! Isn't she swell?!?!?
If you take advantage of this sale through her web-site, you have to enter my name, Shannan Johnson, where it prompts you to get the sale prices!! If you have problems, you can call Sunni at 702-810-9816.

Magpie-gene spliced mutants UNITE!! We have sparklies to horde!!

Good luck...and remember...the special sale is only good until Midnight, August 2 (that's just a few days, people!!)

Friday, July 17, 2009

Confessions of a Jungle Survival Guide


I have a confession to make...

Blogging just isn't any fun anymore.

Why? you ask?

Because I don't have a camera...that's why.

I mean, I took pictures of the AWESOME Fourth of July picnic we went to on my daughters camera (which I hate)...and then I had to send it to her in California before I could download them. So then I used a couple disposable cameras with the thought that I would scan them after they were developed. But our printer isn't working (more on that in a second), and then I left BOTH CAMERAS on a bench in Disneyland last week (one full and then other half full)...and of course they were gone when I went back for them. And Lost and Found had a BUCKET of cameras identical to mine, all lost that day...and I was too stupid to have labeled the cameras with my I had no idea which was mine, and they wouldn't let me take the whole bucket.

(Yes - I really did ask if I could, offering to pinky-swear that I would develop all 50 cameras and return any that weren't mine. The guy looked at me like I was nuts, decided I must've been joking, and started laughing. He stopped abruptly at the desperate "I've-just-spent-15-hours-walking-around-a-theme-park-with-four-small-children-who-alternate-between-starving-exhausted-and-souvenir-deprived-monsters-on-the-hottest-day-to date-in-Southern-California-on-the-first-day-of-my-period-and-I-want-my-damn-photographic-proof" look in my eye).

Needless to say - I left empty-handed.

So now I'm in Utah...I have no pictures of going to Disneyland, OR the San Diego Zoo, OR the beach (WHICH, by the way, was a TOTAL TRIP to my kids...who had no clue that the ocean can be cold, or have waves. Some of my best pictures are of Brigham turning blue as we crammed him into a wetsuit, and of the delighted look on my kids faces as they took boogie boards out to sea...not to float on, but to actually RIDE), OR the wedding, OR my nieces and nephews, brothers and sisters-in-law, cousins, aunts, and uncles.

Its all lost. Just pictures in my head.

I'm so depressed, that I haven't bought another throw-away camera either. So although we've already been hiking up to GORGEOUS Cedar Breaks...I have no pictures of THAT either.

"But, Shannan!" I hear you protest. "Your camera drowned MONTHS ago!! And you've been writing about your search for the perfect camera, and how excited you are. Why on earth haven't you replaced it yet?"

Well...yes, loyal readers (all two of you)...I HAVE been writing about that! But this is a good time to share a lesson on Life with you...

Life Happens While You're Making Other Plans.

And so it is that my husband decided that purchasing a new computer was more important than a new camera. And that he doesn't even want the OLD computer thrown out...oh no!!! He wants TWO computers. And a whole new Internet service thingy that is so complicated that someone has to come to our house and professionally SET IT the meantime...we have NO WORKING COMPUTER IN MY HOME, and no printer, or scanner, or ANYTHING. We just have a bunch of technical crap littering our already crowded home and making it impossible to sit anywhere and chill out. And my husband is spending money like he won the lottery and I'm left wondering: "Where is the guy that used to chastise me for buying name brand mac 'n' cheese instead of generic? Where is the guy who lived by the frugal saying: 'Use it up, Wear it out, Make it work, or Do without?' Is this midlife crisis? Am I coming home to a buxom blonde in a negligee making Lobster Thermadore in my kitchen? Will there be a Porsche in the driveway? Should I stay in Utah?"

Yes...I'm a little melodramatic this evening. I miss my camera. I miss my old husband. I miss blogging.

What say you? Will you still read me without photos? Will there be anything cool to spend 5 minutes of your day perusing? Will my husband return to normal?

Sulking in South Utah...

Shannan the Jungle Survival Guide