Monday, November 30, 2009

I've Officailly Made It to Good Mom Status

Nathan paid me the ultimate compliment just before he left when he said he didn't know which meal was better - Thanksgiving or the ones before and after. Ahh music to my ears after the effort and planning!!!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

"The Cat Came back the very next day......"

Our neighbors called and said our cat had insisted on coming into their house - odd, very odd as Sarabi is skittish and very shy. So Jeffrey went over and brought back the cat. One look in the light and I told him it wasn't ours. The neighbors said, no way could they keep it because of their dogs. Sooooo, after pictures and signs posted and waiting it seems we own another cat - well 3 month old kitten that apparently has been dropped off.

He really is a beguiling creature - maybe a little too much attention needed. The first few days he would sit on our laps, books, computers, and anywhere we were. We finally just put him out when it was warm.

but he always came back.

So now we're going to keep him. Michael named him Odysseus (Man of wiles).

Friday, October 30, 2009

Friends and Fear

Yesterday Rachel helped me get ready for a Pack Meeting at Diane Chambers house. While sweeping the walk their dogs came barreling out to greet her and 'help' her sweep and of course bring her a ball. As I was watching their antics I realized how much Rachel has changed in her confidence with large dogs.
I think Montana is some kind of mastiff - though a little dumb and loveable, and Chase is a friendly pit bull. To Rachel they were just dogs having fun. Just a year and a half ago that scenario wouldn't have happened. Diane was the one who encouraged us to get a dog and found a puppy for us to take care of when she found the black Lab Michael was looking for.
What a difference for my girl!
Aren't friends the best thing ever!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Hey I've noticed........

Last night at supper Jeffrey and the kids enjoyed the homemade pizza and Jeffrey said, "Hey I've noticed our meals have been really good lately." The reason for that is because I've been walking with Laura. I tend to do, or talk, or act a lot like the people I hang around with. It's been going on since Junior High. I pick up words, actions and thoughts of those around me and make it part of my life. Sometimes the effects fade over time and sometimes they stay with me. A few years ago I picked up 'hecka' from my teenagers but since they aren't here saying it anymore I haven't noticed myself saying it. But 'eh' from my mission seems to be a permanent fixture.
I like good food and the compliments that come with it. Hope it stays with me.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Michael assures me these taste good -

It has always been interesting to me how the interconnections and women you meet, get to know, learn to love, and play with have such a profound impact in our lives.
Little threads interwoven into a complex beautiful pattern in our character development.

So guess what?! I've learned to make some cookies without any gluten. I have a friend who can't have gluten (did you know oatmeal and wheat have gluten?) so when ever I make treats for all my visiting teaching ladies she couldn't have them. When I found she wasn't diabetic, I looked into recipes and went to the Harvest House for the ingredients - Presto! Now I can send her treats too!

I can't help but wonder how she takes the sacrament and how does she travel the mine field of church suppers and Relief Society luncheons. Tough always having to ask what is in something.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Ralph and Mary's House

Beverly and I visited Ralph and Mary (from the Navy Reunion) and Ralph let me in on a fun activity he does once in awhile - feed the wild birds.

So the trick is to throw peanuts out the window for a few minutes and all the birds around come flying in, then set them just on the window sill while I'm sitting a foot away with a camera.

And those bold blue Jays will come right up and get the peanuts! But they never picked the little one, just the big one

I finally figure out it was different Jays not the same one

Ralph says they bury them and come back for more

He said if I was patient and waited a bit they would even take them out of my hand!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Summer Place

Beverly, my mother-in-law called a few weeks ago and asked if I'd like to go to the beach with her - awww me and beaches were made for each other!

So instead of sticking around Concord in the 100 plus weather of the last few days, I traveled to Monterey and enjoyed the Beach with Beverly and got to meet some World War vets who were friends of my late father-in-law. They had been singled out in Boot Camp and asked to volunteer for the intelligence operations and the friendships and loyalty they developed as very young men is strong and vital today.

These are the women who stand by them - Phyllis (sp?) , Nancy, Beverly, and Mary -wives to Sam, Rodger, Duke, and Ralph.

We ate very well at great resturants, and took a bus tour of movie sites done in Monterey. He would show a clip on the Monitor overhead and we would see the place it was actually filmed. Very fun. We stopped in Pebble Beach - where some films have been done, and took in the beautiful course and Lodge.

Then we headed up to Paradise and attended a luau where Kim, Beverly's daughter and her granddaughter Jessica surprized her with a dance especially for her wedding anniversary that day and a lei.

Then back to Concord to play with her other grandchildren and then go to church with us on Sunday.

My children really love their Grandmama and I couldn't ask for a better mother. She is really terrific and I hope to be just like her when I grow up.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


I'm admiring the changing colors in the morning looking out over the rooftops from our bathroom window and today I'm slugging around in triple digit heat. How is it possible to be fall and deep summer on the same day?

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Can you feel it?

Despite the 80 plus degree weather, there is just a hint in the air, a smell, a wisp of change.

A few days of cloud cover, thunder and lighting, a sprinkling of water

It's peeking around the corner
A season change!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Hero Material

Laura was telling me about her accident pron Labor Day pool party. One kid got jumped on and sprained his shoulder, one guy got a cement rash from slipping on the side of the pool. A neighbor had the paramedics come. One little girl floated off the step and her mom pulled her out immediately - but the most dramatic incident of the day was when a little boy stepped out into deep water and began flailing about. Kelly Kruse jumped in clothes, shoes, brand new cell phone, remote key pad and all and pulled the tyke out.

Kelly Kruse scoutmaster-2 of his Eagle Scouts

Laura said one woman asked, "Is he in trouble?" and another man was rising from his chair to fix the problem, but Kelly Kruse had an instinctive reaction and was in the pool before anybody else.

So what makes a hero?
A willingness to act
An instinctive reaction to danger

I'll bet he thinks he's an ordinary man who just happened to be there. Yup Hero Quality!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

BYU Oklahoma Nail Bitter

So I come home during the second quarter to angst and realized I was in the midst of blue-blood BYU fans. I like BYU I hope they win

but my blood pressure stays the same

and my heartbeat doesn't run faster

like some I know!

Ok, now life is A-OK, everybody here is HAPPY!!! That one little extra point is really good.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Friends getting married

Sherry and Colton Lacy - August 22, 2009

Some of the friends and bridesmaids

Weddings are a great place to gather friends together!

Sherry's reception had elaborate lights, flowers, lattice work and ribbons - it looked great!

More friends gathered at the reception

The food was superb under Laura Nausin's direction, the tri-tip was out of this world!

OK back to the wedding and friends of Andrew's:

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Laura's influence while on vacation -

Going on a unexpected but really great trip to Pajaro Dunes last Friday, we stopped for gas when I saw this organic stand and had to stop for the flowers and strawberries, and ended up with

something I'd never seen before

blue potatoes

actually they were very good and really did taste like regular potatoes

they just had tougher skins and were blue - or purple!

How is this Laura's influence? I'm trying lots of new things and of course the flowers alone made me think of her. I did buy the Dahlia's and they made me smile every time I saw them. She's really great sister material and I can't wait for our next girls night (day, morning, weekend) out!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Southwest is MY Airline!!!!!!!

OK, I have these blond moments at times, who knows why. When I went up to Portland, Oregon with my sisters we had a really great time at the coast and along the seashore. So on Saturday we all traveled to the airport really early and I watched them get on their plane and fly off to Utah, then I made my way over to my gate. So far so good. Found the gate I'd be leaving at in a few hours. I wandered around for a little bit check the monitor and made a few calls to family and friends. Checked the monitor walked around a bit more, bought a book and supper and went back to my gate. People getting off but nobody getting on, odd I thought. So I check and find the plane left 20 minutes ago. How did this happen? Then I notice the monitor is the arrivals - duh- great - so blond - etc. etc. Now what? I wish I was always cool instead of emotional, so I explain the situation to an attendant leaving and she said good thing I caught her as the airline closes early on Saturdays and no one would have been in the building in a half an hour. She said Mario would be my best bet as he solves problems. When she calls him back he asks me to wait while he get some minors off the plane and finds their escorts. He come back with a girl and tells her to wait by him while he finishes some paperwork, her mom comes signs her out and shows her license and then he turns to help me. He's really great about showing me all the options I have and I find out the Sundays in Portland are super busy, so he gets me an upgrade and tactfully tells me to be at the gate 10 minutes before boarding so I don't lose my seat tomorrow. His contacts with the hotel who takes distressed passengers is full, so he walks me to a desk which has all the hotels in the area connected to the airport and after calling a few I find a last minute cancellation. I tearfully call Jeffrey - he's fantastic - and get on a shuttle and drop into a nice bed for the night at Soldier Pony Best Western. (Very nice hotel in case you want to know!) But my hero Mario isn't done. A few days later a package comes in the mail because I'd left my picture of my sisters and I in Old Fashion Western on the desk and he knew who it was! I LOVE Southwest Airlines because they are affordable, don't make you pay extra for luggage, I can go just about anywhere I need to and I especially love Mario in the Portland Airport for service above and beyond at Southwest Airlines!

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Pacific Grove with Laura and company!

It was so fun to run down the coast with Laura, Dominic and Rachel to visit the bay and ocean, the Aquarium, antique shops, and stay at a house of her neighbors that is being fixed up. Of course we had to stop at fine dining on our way down.

Fascinating to see animals we would never be able to glimpse if it wasn't for these exhibits.

Laura's neighbors have this place that was made in 1896 and they are fixing it up to live in. It has corner cupboards and interesting niches.

The beach was only a little way down the street.

Dominic waiting outside of a antique shop.

All in all a fun trip to visit one of my favorite places to see old and new sights.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

What a grand week!

Looking forward to July of this year!

More braids every day

Love those dirty duties

Noel disinfecting the tables

Home sweet home

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Only 1/2 hour to Go!!!

Rachel is taking Piano lesson from Lindsay Bradburn and for the last 3 days she's been planning. She has taken out every clarinet book and tried to play all the songs from the notes she knows. Then in spectacular fashion, she was asked to babysit the Bradburn children! Oh my, we've gone online to find games, she's been to the dollar store to get just the right thing, and now with 1/2 an hour to go she can hardly be in one place. It's awesome to watch a kid who has no younger siblings get so excited about watching someone else's.

Monday, June 29, 2009

I'm "really Looking forward to Girls Camp

As I paint, sand, and glue "beads" for the lanyards, the thought of girls camp is delicious! I can't wait to go and see how everybody is again and connect out in a great setting. Rucker Lake here we come!

Pool Ladies

We have a rule that what's in the Pool stays in the Pool, so no pictures. It is loads of fun to go to Laura's house in the morning and do a pool workout. Sometimes there is lots of people and sometimes there is just a few but it's sure a nice way to start the day. You can do so much more in the pool than on dry land. The range of muscles are so much easier to do and I feel so much lighter. There is absolutely no way I could kick my foot up to shoulder level except in the pool. Then of course is talking with fascinating women and the new ideas that are generated. Good times!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

You can make.....

Last Sunday- Father's Day- I made a special meal for the family - because I went shopping with Laura, and she always makes a great meal sound doable, and lets me know what's really on sale. It was great and not all that hard. For dessert I decided to use Regg's strawberries in a pre-made chocolate pie shell and top it with whip cream. When I pulled out the carton of cream to whip it up, my kid said, "You can make whip cream?" I just started laughing as I realized how far down the ready-made path I've gone until I started walking with Laura - who always uses real vanilla, garlic cloves, and makes her chicken nuggets from scratch. When I served the pie, the laughter started again when Jeffrey said there wasn't enough sugar in the whipped cream. I've got to renew a few cooking skills. I had to assure my family over and over that I wasn't laughing at them but at my limited culinary skills.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Jim was out today

Back in August, or was it September? Anyway when Laura and I first started walking we established a route- after a few weeks a bad storm came up one night. When we were walking our route we found an older Gentleman pacing outside his house that had a huge oak tree laying in giant pieces across his lawn. He told us how it had come down cracking his roof, narrowly missing the room they were in because of some wires that had been strung a few years back. The oak was huge, the hole in the center was large enough to fall through, a man could not put his arms around the whole trunk - maybe two men.
So every few days we'd meet Jim again and he'd tell us the story. After a few weeks he calmed and seemed to know who we were and we'd watch as they cut and cut and finally took away that whole tree and then he waited and watched for the men to fix his roof, gutters and the parts that were broken. We'd talk to him and got to know him over the months watching his house get fixed, his lamp put up and his lawn and a few flowers start to grow again. Fascinating man who grew up and lived his life around here. We didn't connect for a few months this winter and finally in May we saw him once and now he's out again.

This is an new oak seedling that came up and Jim planted it right where the old oak stood. He watches and waters it.

Jim and Laura chatting - June 12, 2009

Friday, May 29, 2009

Pack Meeting on Mt. Diablo

Marched up Mt. Diablo

Received Awards

Andres "bridged" over to the Boy Scouts"

Teemaree and Andres Capener

And then we strode back down again!