Ten things I did yesterday:
Nine people I spoke or texted with yesterday:
Eight blessings I counted yesterday:
Seven things I will be preparing this weekend:
Six people I am especially thankful for today:
Five words fitting for today:
Four things I'm craving right now.
Three things I really dreaded but did anyway yesterday:
Two quotes that I love lately:
One really great quote too. Life is good.
I haven't slept much this week. Lots going on. Lots on my mind. It's been a crazy one, but we're rolling with it, enjoying it, handling it, dealing with it, loving it.... all that and more! A few random thoughts in no particular order this day....
I hit publish on this early this afternoon and came in tonight to realize it was still a draft. What' s up with that?!
It's been a lovely morning. We've just returned from the funeral service of my sister-in-law's father. What a wonderful man he was. I never really knew him, other than the hellos and a few conversations at family gatherings through the years. Doug and I attended the viewing last night, since Doug was unable to get off work today, but the kids and I enjoyed hearing the stories of his life and the great example and father that he was at his funeral today. A good man. It never ceases to amaze me how we leave a funeral wishing we'd had more time with the deceased. This was the case. Grace even said, "He sounded like a wonderful man, Mom." He was, indeed.
This morning, bright and early, I was out and about on a little project. As I was driving home, I was thinking about service. I was thinking of all the services that have been done to and for our family through the years and about the times that I am able to do for others. As wonderful as it feels to receive, I believe with all my heart, it feels a gazillion times better to be on the giving end. We often pray that we can look for ways to serve those around us. I resolved, as I drove, to be more observant and to act on those promptings more often! I have a plaque in the gallery that says, "Do good and care not to whom." I love that reminder!
One of the hymns sang at the funeral was "Each Life that touches Ours for Good." I love this hymn. And ironically, the words of it were what had been on my mind all morning.
Here's a total random thought...I was talking with Doug on the phone about weekend plans on our way to the funeral. In the conversation, I thought about gas and noticed that I was just at the half tank. When we returned to the Expedition after the funeral, my gauge said below empty! I was mortified. WHO steals gas from cars at a funeral!? I coasted down the hill to the first gas station, put gas in the tank and decided that I should notify the police, in case others had the same experience. Just as I was dialing dispatch, I noticed the gauge, which now should have moved back up to the top and it still said below empty. So, apparently, something electrical died during the funeral. Grrrrr. Never a dull moment.
I have not been in the pool myself, yet, this season. Today is the day. It's hot and I don't feel like doing a thing but stay cool! It could be that I've been up since 4 and didn't go to sleep until 1:30. It could be the heat. I could be that I want to play with the girls. Whatever it is, today's the day. (Edited to add: GOT IN AND KICKING MYSELF FOR WAITING SO LONG! Only another week or so till it's too cold again! First of August, nights cool the water to the point that none of us want to be in it!)
It's ninety-seven degrees outside and I just took Quayd to work. He works in black jeans and black polo shirt. Quayd brings in carts a lot of the day from the hot asphalt. He commented, "It's gonna be a long hot day. I wish it would rain!" I'm sure he does. For his sake, I wish it would too! I reminded him to drink lots everytime he goes inside!
Often the answer to our prayer does not come while we're on our knees, but while we're on he feet serving the Lord and serving those around us.
Deiter F. Uchtdorf
Last night, I was staring at two zucchini and an avocado that needed to be used. I remembered that I had a chicken breast that also needed cooking. I searched on Pinterest and the net for some wonderful recipe and didn't find anything that really appealed to me, until I discovered something that had the beginnings of something that sounded pretty tasty. I played with it, added a few things and it turned out to be the best zucchini I've ever tasted...well...the best zucchini recipe that that did not involve chocolate and sugar and flour.
3 tbsp. olive oil
1 chicken breast, chopped
1 cup chopped purple onion
2 cloves minced garlic
1 small chopped jalapeno
2 zucchini, quartered lengthwise and then sliced about 1/8" thick (they were about 9" long)
salt to taste
pepper to taste
1 -2 tbsp. dried cilantro
1/4 - 1/2 tsp. curry (I know...that sounded strange, but it's awesome!)
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet on medium high and cook the chicken, onion and pepper until tender. Stir in the garlic and cook another minute or so. Add the zucchini and seasonings. Stir and cook until tender. (Cover it in between stirring, but stir often.) Remove from heat and drain any liquid. Put the mixture in a bowl to the side. Wipe out the skillet and place a tortilla in the skillet. Cover half of the tortilla with shredded pepperjack cheese and/or colbyjack. Cover the cheese with some of the zucchini mixture and then add more cheese to the top of that. Close the tortilla in half, cover and cook on medium heat for a few minutes until the cheese is melted and the tortilla is golden brown. Serve with salsa and avocado. Enjoy!
Oh my!!! So good! ZJ said, "Mom!!! This is the best zucchini I've ever tasted! It doesn't taste like zucchini!" I think that was a complement!
This morning, I met Carol for breakfast at 7:45. It was so good to catch up and visit. I am so blessed with great friends in my life. We laughed and gabbed and had some pretty tasty strawberry crepes!
We've done our family devotional already this morning too. I'm so glad that the kids are actually getting something out of reading the Book of Mormon. I love that they are actively involved. This is the first time that it wasn't just me reading to them. We hope to finish the Book of Mormon again before school starts! It's a stretch, and even if we don't complete it, we'll be almost there and are growing from reading it! I love the scriptures! I've offered before, and was excited to have positive response... Again... I offer... if anyone is interested, I'll happily send you a copy of the Book of Mormon. Just send me an email and let me know!
The rest of this day includes time with the kids, finalizing the list of things needed for food for the Corbridge Reunion, some housework and attending the viewing of my sister-in-law's father. Another busy summer day! We're hoping to find some time in the pool and I'm hoping for some time with a good book, as well.
Life is good. So was that Zucchini! Today's quote is much needed!
If you have a bad thought about yourself, tell it to go to Hell because that's exactly where it came from.
Quayd and I had a great weekend together, filling every moment with fun until he went to work each day. I loved that special time with Quayd alone, since it's usually Quayd that is off with Doug camping someplace! And I also loved the time that I had alone. During my alone time, I read a whole book, watched it's movie, cleaned, did laundry, took a short nap and thought. A lot.
The girls returned home with big smiles and lots of stories to share. Both were feeling better than when they left, although, I could tell immediately that Zeej had overdone it. (As if that wasn't what we had expected.) Doug said that he'd loved hearing both girls bare their testimony the night before and watching them interacting with the other girls. The girls loved having their dad there. We sat outside in the backyard for hours while they shared all their stories about hikes and activities and Doug told me all about the terrain and the trees and this amazing spring and his impressions of the girls in the ward and the great job by the leaders.
We celebrated their return by going to Firehouse for dinner while Quayd worked. It's so strange to not all be together for everything we do as a family, but such is life when we have teens. Only a few more months and Grace will be out the door all of the time too. So, for now, I'm enjoying every minute of it.
I missed visits with Liza most of the weekend. We only caught each other a few times because her mother-in-law was visiting and she was busy celebrating her birthday. I have to mention that her friend, Liz, is becoming quite proficient at shoe design. Her gift to Liza was a pair of "Liz Lewis Originals"...how awesome is that!? No friend of mine has ever made me a pair of shoes! The grey ones are Liza's. Aren't they lovely!? And I would be remiss not to say that Liz is far more than a wonderful designer of shoes...she is truly an answer to my prayers and a wonderful wonderful friend to Liza!
After church, I called Wendy to ask what she was doing for dinner. She didn't know yet. I said, "Neither do I. Shall we not know together and see what we can come up with?" And we had a feast! We made chicken kabobs with zucchini, onions, mushrooms, jalapenos. Wendy made brown rice and I made spinach salad. I made deviled eggs and the girls made some banana-nut brownies. Wendy made garlic bread. We couldn't have planned it and had a better meal. We visited and debated and discussed the issues of the world, which was quite interesting conversation for a couple of hours. I love our relationship with the B's because we can just be ourselves and "we work". It was a perfect Sunday!
Speaking of which, Grace spoke in church. Her throat is still sore and she struggled to speak loudly, but she gave a nice talk about how the "gospel truths" have impacted her life. Just before Sacrament Meeting, a sister in the ward came up to me, handed me a letter and gave me a hug. Her letter was letting me know her thoughts after spending time with my girls at camp all week. I cried and definitely had a mommy moment. I'm not bragging, but I do want to remember this sweet moment. In the letter, among other things, this sister said that she's watched them and seen their "Sunday side" but after three days and nights with them..."They love each other so much, they watch out and protect each other, they watch out for the "lonely" and the ones left out. These traits are so precious and I saw both ZJ and Grace show these wonderful gifts many times!" Could there be a better moment in a day when someone recognizes those things in your children? I think not!
I had another moment at the B's when I looked out the window and saw ZJ and Jayden talking by the swings. A few minutes later, they were on them. Then sitting on the patio swing together. These two are friends, like brother and sister. Yet, they are at that age where I see them as teens now. Just watching them talk, I saw my lovely daughter "datable" in only a few years and thought of Grace, who will be also in just months. Time is just moving by too swiftly!
This week will be a busy one. I have a large plate and it's full! Life is good.
Nobody is too busy. It's just a matter of priorities.
This morning, I woke up and texted and called Liza to wish her a happy birthday. We visited a bit and when she felt like it was time to wake Aylabelle, she let me do it on Skype. It was a fun visit with them both. Aylabelle now says "Buh-bye" and waves and gives me kisses on Skype. It kills me, but I'm grateful for the technology to have a relationship with her a thousand miles away.
Liza and I were on the phone last night at 11. Buddy is away for the week at a Youth Conference, so she's been alone all week until tonight. We've talked late at night each night. Last night, at about 11:15, we were gabbing away when my other line rang. I looked and it was Dad. Here's the conversation... Oh, how I love my dad!
Me: Hello. Dad?
Dad: Is this the most beautiful girl in the whole wide world?
Me: It's me, Dad. Are you okay? Is everything alright?
Dad: Yeh, Baby. Everything just fine. Why?
Me: Well, what are you doing calling me at 1:15?
Dad: Is it 1:15 there? Oh, Baby, I'm sorry. Were you sleeping?
Me: No, I am on the other line with Liza. It's 1:15, what are you doing up so late?
Dad: 1:15! That means it's 3:15 here.
Me: No, Dad. It's 1:15 there. It's 11:15 here.
Dad: 1:15! Well no wonder nobody wants to talk to me.
Me: You mean you called someone else?
Dad: Yeh, I called Cuzzin' Verlie and she said she'd talk to me tomorrow. I called Sister Sue and she said she'd talk to me tomorrow. No wonder!
Me: Dad, you're so silly! I'm glad you're doing so well.
Dad: Well, Baby! I gotta go! I gotta get my beauty sleep. What are you doing calling me in the middle of the night, interrupting my beauty rest?
Me: I'll let you get back to it.
Dad: I love you, Baby.
Me: I love you too, Dad.
I hung up and busted out laughing. I called Liza back. "Is he okay?! Is everything alright?" I told her the story and she laughed as hard as I did. My silly Dad! I do love that man!
Quayd and I went to the matinee and saw Spiderman again today. He loves Spidey! It was a fun date and he loved that I was interested in his trivial knowledge. I dropped him off just before his shift began at work. He gave me a peck goodbye and signed, "I love you." I drove away and said, out loud, "Oh, how I love that boy!" Before we went to the show, we stopped at the bank and he withdrew part of his paycheck. I love that he is so quick to just say, "This much for tithing, this much for my mission savings." Then he gave me a wad of money and asked me to hold onto it for him, so that he didn't have to carry it around. He even told me a good hiding place for it at home. He's being responsible! YAY, QUAYD!!
Denise texted while we were at the movie and invited me to dinner, so after dropping Quayd off, I came home, had a quick rest and then we went to Elements for dinner, outside on the patio. Lettuce Wraps! Our favorite thing at Elements! We sat outside on the patio alone and the server commented that no one wants to eat outside when it's that hot out. We laughed. That's our favorite place, outside by the river... our reason for going!! ZJ will be jealous! She loves Elements!
After dinner, I came home and watched a movie alone, watered the garden, read a bit, sat on the swing along after sunset, chatted with Carol and then, went back to pick Quayd up after work. While waiting for Quayd, Doug called! Happiness! He said that the girls are both doing great. He shared lots of details about water and hills and hikes and trees. Heloves nature so much. I love him so much! What a team! Quayd came home from work with donuts for us and we watched "Bird on a Wire" together before scriptures and bedtime. It was a busy, fun, relaxing, memorable day.
The family will all be home together tomorrow. Doug just called a few minutes ago to say goodnight. He said that the girls had been doing great and feeling good! It's been a good experience for them. It's been a good experience here at home, as well. Life is good.
Liza turned thirty last year, so we won't say how old she is this year! It's so amazing to me to think of the baby of my bigs is in her thirties! And I'd say that this has been a very big and important year for her. In the past twelve months...
Liza celebrated her pregnancy.
She had a beautiful baby girl...
She learned how to be a good mommy...
...a really good Mommy.
She made two very very happy grandparents!
While learning to be a new mommy, she served as a counselor in the Relief Society Presidency and wife to the Bishop's first counselor.
She became a stay-at-home mom and loved every minute of it!
She brings us more joy that words could express!
She's a beauty inside and out.
We couldn't love her more. Her birthday is one of the happiest days of my life! Happy Birthday, Liza! We love you!
Sometimes when I need a miracle,
I look into my daughter's eyes and realize that
I've already created one.
I got the girls off to camp, but not without some drama... Grace woke up and was "in a mood" or so I thought. That's not like her because, normally, she would be flying high with excitement. Instead, she was quiet, just not being herself at all. We went into town for her to get her achey filling filed down some before heading out of town for camp. When Brett was done with the 20 second job, she had tears in her eyes. He and I were talking and I looked at her and knew something was wrong. I said, "Grace? What is it?" She just started to cry. We said our goodbyes, walked out to the Expedition and I said, "I'm not starting this truck until you tell me what is the matter." She said, "I can't tell you. If I tell you, you won't let me go to camp." We talked for a few minutes and she finally confessed that her throat was hurting and she didn't feel good. I. Was. Sick. We've all been amazed that no one else has gotten sick since we've all been exposed to ZJ's pneumonia. I said, "Let's go and talk with Sister Stone and see what she thinks." (YW President)
We drove to Ang's and knocked at her door. She took one look at Grace, gave her a hug and said, "What's the matter?" We explained the situation and discussed the options. As a germaphobe mother, I'd not be amused if someone knowingly came to camp with pnuemonia and exposed my daughters to it. One of the options was to get Grace on antibiotics immediately and have her wear a mask for a few days. We decided that this would be acceptable and Dan, Brother Stone, gave Grace a blessing before they left. She was smiling behind her mask, although feeling a bit uncomfortable and embarrassed.
Two girls, both, very happy to be going to camp!
Each year before camp, the girls are required to do specific tasks, including first aid training and a five mile hike. Saturday morning, Grace went on the hike. ZJ stayed home and rested. Grace came home, very happy that it had been such a good time. She's definitely maturing!
Here's where I find Doug a lot of the time right now... picking raspberries. He picks them for his blender drink, to bring me a bowl or just to snack. I thought about it today...he'll be at girls camp and I will be the one out there picking and snitching! I feel another raspberry s'more and a few bowls of cereal with fresh raspberries coming up soon!
Here's one of the girls' lunches for their drive to camp... in the bottom of the cello bag was their sub sandwich, which was cut to fit and then topped with a ziplock bag of cool ranch doritos and then covered with lots of salt water taffy. Tucked in the side were candybars and the Sobe is just a given. They love Sobes like I love Diet Coke. I found these fun banana takeout boxes and thought they'd be fun for them to keep their treats in after lunch. The girls saw them and got all excited... "Mom! You're the best!" My thoughts on the matter...if you're gonna live, ya may as well make it fun, right?
Here's the girls waiting for the others to arrive. They were all excited to be there. Grace looks a little uncomfortable. Oh, I hope she's okay. Quayd said a sweet prayer for both of his sisters a few minutes ago before going to bed.
She took the mask off for this one but Zeej blinked. Darn!
One big group of happy campers... well... cabiners, this year. They are going to a cabin near Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Not so roughing it, this year. A good year for it, where my girls are concerned. I'm glad that it won't be that rough of a camp with both of them feeling the way they have.
Secret Sister gifts...nail polishes, lip glosses, giant candy bars, beach towels and a piece of jewelry for each. We didn't quite keep within the $5 budget, but, it was easier to just buy what we wanted. I've had too much on the brain to worry about that one this year.
So they are off. The leaders always go all out for the girls. It will be a wonderful experience for them! Doug's off to join them tomorrow after work. Quayd and I will do something fun together tomorrow evening since he works Friday and Saturday. Liza's birthday is Friday. I would love to be together to celebrate! Such is life. Speaking of which, life is so good!
walk gently, breathe peacefully and laugh hysterically.
It's the most laid back time of the year, supposedly, and I feel so overwhelmed with all that needs to be done! The girls are packed. I went to make their lunches for tomorrow's roadtrip and realized that the giant sandwich that I bought for them to take is not in the fridge. It wasn't in the bag when we got home. So, a trip to the store will be required in the morning. Just as I was thinking about that, Grace mentioned her tooth was hurting again. I'd mentioned it to Brett, our dentist while at the ortho appointments earlier today and he said if it keeps aching, to run in before she leaves for camp tomorrow. So, my plans of making blueberry waffles for a nummy breakfast send-off are now a quick trip to Lee's for a replacement sandwich, a trip into Brett's to have her filling filled down a bit and a probable and requested quick stop at Kneaders Bakery before picking the B's daughter up to drop them all off for their way to Wyoming. Crazy!
HOWEVER! Once they are gone, I'll have tomorrow and Thursday with Quayd and then Firday and Saturday to myself because.... change of plans! Doug is now going to camp, as well. He won't be going until Thursday after work. We've had a death in the ward and all of the drivers/chaperones/leadership has had to be changed so that the Bishopric can be here to attend the funeral. Therefore, and in behalf, Doug is needed at camp.
The girls were just asking yesterday why their Dad wasn't going this year. It's the first time in five years. But, now, he is! They are happy about it. I had to laugh though, when Grace commented, "I love having Dad there and he only embarasses me a little bit." I asked when and she said, "You know. When he eats the weeds." I said, "That's just Dad and it's what we all love about him! Everyone loves that about Dad!" Such is the life of living with "GranolaMan". As always, I'm so grateful to have a husband that's so willing to support his kids!
I think another reason I'm so stressed tonight at bedtime is that I've not had a Diet Coke since yesterday at noon. That's 36 hours and boy do I have a killer headache! I feel a Sonic run on our way to our early morning dentist stop! I thought there were two more 12 packs outside and they were gone! Doug usually keeps me stocked! I haven't had time to run back to the store today. BUT... I'm still alive! Barely! ;)
It's almost 11. I've got a huge morning ahead of me. At 10:40, things will be calm for a few days. My plans for the next few days, while Quayd works and everyone else is gone... laundry, movies, reading, studying my lesson, pizza, some Chinese food, maybe some Brazilian food with my favorite boy and taking a few days "off" from being a full-time Mom.
Tonight, while Quayd and Doug were on a hike up Logan Canyon, the girls and I sat in the backyard, swinging, going over the lists and making sure that everything is packed. We talked and laughed and had a great visit. Grace commented that she always misses being away from me. She said that the last day is the hardest day for her. I love that we had that little time together. I love that they love being home. I love that we are a family!
Life is good!
If you think my hands are full, you should see my heart!
Weekend ramblings... there's just not enough time in the day!
Doug ended up working on Thursday, which meant that we just hung close to home. ZJ still doesn't have a lot of energy yet. She's dying to swim and be out and about like Grace, but even getting ready for church was enough to send her into coughing spells, so I had her get back into her jammies and stay home. She is determined that she's going to camp, regardless of how she feels, but we don't want to see her go backwards, so we are being pretty tough about her resting!
Saturday morning, Zulu decided to go "walkabout" when someone left the gate open. I cried. I prayed. The kids were really surprised to see how attached I am to this dog already. Quayd found him and hour later and three blocks south at our friend, Trudy's home. He was fine and just happy as could be. Always. That's him. It made me wonder, does he miss his old family? Is he not happy enough here? Then, after a few minutes of that kind of negative thinking, I realized, "What's not to love at our home? We spoil the dogs like they are kids. He was just on a little sightseeing tour, checking out the neighborhood." He's not left my feet since we found him.
My Sunday School lessons are coming to an end soon. Only a few more to teach. Between weekends at the ranch and the fact that we are taking our time getting through them, not just calling it good at the end of the 40 minutes, it could be the end of summer before I'm done with the last three lessons. But, I ask myself, "what next?" Will I still be a Sunday School teacher? Will I be a sub? Will they have me teach another class? Will I get a new calling? One of the things about being a member of the LDS Church is that change happens... often.
We had so much fun with Boatwrights this past weekend! We have such a special bond with Dave and Katie! I've waited until I'd shared this news with Liza first, but.... drum roll... as everyone knows, my number one bucket list item is a trip to NYC. And as of Saturday, it's official! My ticket is purchased! I'll be spending my birthday with Katie in the Big Apple! Details to come! I'm more excited than words can express!
Girls Camp is almost here. We went shopping this morning and bought the last minute items, other than the girls' treats. They are packed and waiting for my inspection. They can hardly wait! We got their "secret sister" packages wrapped and labeled. We kept it simple. The girls made me grin... They both said, "Everyone knows that we are their secret sister as soon as they get their first gift. They just don't know which one of us is who's. As soon as they see how cute they are wrapped, they know it." It made me smile when ZJ added, "Mom always makes everything special." YAY!!! A mommy moment, indeed!
With the girls at Camp and Quayd working, I will have the house to myself in the daytime and Doug and I will be alone for two evenings this week. We won't know what to do with ourselves! I'm thinking we will end up doing what we usually do... swinging in the back yard and eating a little sushi at Black Pearl.
Dentist bright and early in the morning... ortho for Quayd and ZJ. A few last minute camp treats to purchase and we plan on spending the rest of the day at home chillin' in our 97 degree heat! Life is good. Busier than it should be, but good! I'm going to put an out of order sticker on my forehead and call it a day!
always find time for the things that make you happy to be alive!
French toast and fresh blueberry syrup... that's as far as we've gotten today. And it's noon. It's a hazy day outside and feels like we live in Indiana again with all of the humidity. We've been having a Twilight Marathon at our house. We're about to begin movie number four. The kids are loving it. I'm getting some other things done while watching, but it's fun to see them again. I'd decided that I was totally over them, but...hmmm... not so much.
ZJ continues to do better. She's still using the inhaler to breathe, but she passed on the cough syrup most of the day, which is a sign of huge improvement! And she's laughing again. I missed that!
Here's not something to laugh at. Not at all. Last night, I had the police scanner on and heard a call that went something like this: "We have a 14 year old girl calling in to say that there is a boy in the Hyrum Dam and he can't swim anymore." It caught our attention immediately. The police responded and emergency teams were instantly on their way. I was frantic, bawling, thinking, "Why doesn't someone at the dam help him!!!" We listened intently and two minutes later, the dispatch operator said, "He's gone under. They can't see him." I noted the clock at the 24 minute mark. The police were not even on scene yet. The boy didn't come up again. I watched the clock and sat with tears falling, imagining the helplessness of those around him. The boy was only 20 feet from the beach. The water was murky enough that the recovery divers had only six inches of visibility. Three hours later, they recovered the lifeless body of a fourteen year old boy, who'd been out enjoying a day with his cousins at the beach. I cried myself to sleep.
I am not an ambulance chaser. I hardly can stand to watch the news anymore. I always watch it after the fact so that I can fast forward through the rapes and murders to get to the weather. But, I do turn on the scanner ap if I hear a siren nearby or when someone calls and says, "Do you know what's happening?" Sometimes, it's almost comical to listen to it on the weekends... drunk people do silly things and there are lots of "stupid criminals"...like the night a man was trying to run from the police and ran into another dam here in the valley. 40 degrees outside. 40 degree water. He swam while the police brought in boats, ambulances and lots more support. The guy was finally getting tired after 45 minutes and they talked him into going to the shallow waters so that his feet could at least touch the bottom. Really? Then the guy didn't want to get in the boat that came out to rescue him. Silly people.
But, this. Last night. This got to me. I have to say that my hat is off to the police and emergency workers. And that dispatch woman. Oh my. How she maintained her cool while being the contact person for so many emergency people. These people have my respect. They deserve more pay. They are true heroes in my book. And that poor family. They have my prayers. And a lot of my thoughts this morning.
Life is good. So dang good. We just never know how much more we get to enjoy it. Make every moment count. Even the not so good ones! At least we've got them!
Let gratitude be the pillow upon which you kneel to say your nightly prayer.
Sad news yesterday. After trying to get her in to see a doctor all day long (Ours took the day off, which was odd for the Monday after a long weekend.), ZJ and I ended up at Instacare. It's confirmed. She has pnuemonia. I spent a months worth of grocery money on medications to get her better. (Four surgeries in one year meant that we'd met our out of pocket max last year. But, we are back to "meet the deductible time now. Ugh. Not that the money matters, where her health is concerned.) She's flat down in bed for the next seven days, regardless, says the doctor, or she doesn't get to go to girls camp. She's so not amused. And there it is...our traditional "someone ends up at the hospital on the week of July 4th again". Poor Zeej. She's not amaused and neither am I. So sad. However... after double doses of two kinds of antibiotics and use of an inhaler, Zeej says that this afternoon, she can actually take a breath that feels like a breath... huge asked-for-and-depended-on blessing!
This morning, bright and early, I took Grace in to our dentist. She needed a filling It never ends! But, she sure has a beautiful smile and we want to keep it that way! Here's an amazing thing... Grace gets teased all the time because she tries really hard not to have muscles. No lifting because it will cause muscles! No exercising. It's a joke, but she is seriously not a fan of woman body building. We keep telling her that she's gonna need those muscles when she "starts birthin' babies!"
ANYWAY, this morning, Brett gets her in the chair and pulls out the needles to numb her mouth. She said, "I don't want to be numb." He explained that he would be drilling into her tooth and she needs to be numb. She hates the numbness for hours, not the shot, but the numbness. She insisted that she was tough. I'm thinking, "There's NO way!" Brett explained it again and she insisted. So, he gave her some happy gas and told her that when it starts to hurt, just raise her hand and let him know so that he can give her the shot. AND, he made her promise to never say a bad word about her dentist hurting her. (He's the best! We love him! Remember, he's the one that sent me a Diet Coke to enjoy after my colonoscopy. He's the best!)
SO. He started drilling. She never flinched. He even said, "Now, this is the deepest part. Just raise your hand if you need me to stop." Nada. She laid there like no big deal. I was hurting watching! I'd told him about Grace and her "no muscle fetish". When he finished, he told her that he was impressed, put his arm up on the countertop and teased, "Come on, let's arm wrestle!" She refused, grinning from ear to ear. He told her that next time she comes in, he's going to have the pathway blocked for something just for her to move to get into the office. Let it never be said that Grace is a wimp! She may not have muscles but she's one strong woman!
Here's a few other rambling thoughts...
Life is good! And beautiful! And amazing! And wonderful! Today's quote is "a thinker"...well worth the thought!
You are not separate from the whole.
You are one with the sun, the earth, the air.
You don't have a life.
You are life.
We had a most casual Fourth of July weekend! Quayd worked, so we opted to not go to the ranch after all. It turned out that it was for the best. ZJ is still fighting a serious case of walking pnuemonia. She's coughed to the point that her ribs are constantly throbbing. She's on antibiotics, so we are hoping to see some improvement fast!
Highlights of the weekend...
The fireworks at Danny and Alene's are always the best! We loved visiting with the family, the nummy food, chilling until the traffic dies down afterwards. It's just the best! Kelly and Zaylee joined us even.
On the morning of the 4th, Doug and I made a quick run to Sam's Club, then visited with his mom for a couple of hours and headed home to just relax for, literally, the rest of the entire weekend. We talked about going to a movie several times, but everytime we discussed it, everyone said, "Nah, let's just stay home." So. We did.
At home, we watched a movie or two, swam in the pool a bit, worked in the garden, picked another five gallons of cherries, gave a lot of them away, made s'mores around a backyard campfire, ate some fun meals and my favorite part, Doug and I sat and talked for hours and hours in the shade on the backyard swing. It was a perfect relaxing weekend...other than the moment that the hornet flew by my ear, stung me on the neck, laughed and flew away. I know I heard him laugh!
And then there was Quayd... who had an exciting weekend...Not only did he work, he went on his first date! It was a group date with two other couples. They went mini-golfing and to Sonic for an hour just sitting and chatting under the neon lights, playing "one in a million". Quayd's big dare was to go up take some guys hat off. Quayd was smart! He went up the guy, asked him if he could before doing it, took off the guys hat, put it on, gave the "I did it" look to his friends, said "Thanks!" and then proudly went back to his friends. He came in just after 11. Doug and I had looked at each other and said, "We never told him what time to come home." just before he walked in. It's amazing and wonderful to have a son who is so responsible and trustworthy! He had a great time. He said that he walked her to the door and said, "Thanks alot", gave her a hug and turned back to the guys. He said, "I had to give her a [little sister] hug or the guys would have teased."
No kissing till after his mission is his goal. He teases me, "It's getting harder though." We have a deal with the kids. If they graduate from highschool without kissing, they get a $500 bonus! We'll see who makes it. Quayd is not looking for a girlfriend. He wants lots of girl friends to hang out with but not one "girlfriend", so that he can leave for his mission in two years unattached. Let's hope he keeps that mindset. It will simplify his next four years of life so much! Then, we he comes home from his mission, DATE AWAY!!!! Doug always says, "Date long, engage short, marry forever." It's hard for me to imagine that this time is already here! He's excited about his job, having his own money and having all of the fun he's enjoying right now.
And then, there's Grace. She can't wait for some of Quayd's friends to want her to be a part of this ""group" dating scene.
Here's a few pix from the weekend...
Zaylee had a big weekend... Kelly had her permanency hearing and was granted final permanent full custody of Zaylee. I think (?) that in 90 days, her case with DCFS will be closed completely. She's done so well. Apparently, her "husband" is ready for a divorce. We can only hope and pray! He still gets supervised visits for 2 hours a week. We'll see what happens there. I can't let myself think about it. ANYWAY...Kelly has signed her up for a dance class and Zaylee danced at the Stadium before the fireworks. She was too shy (or too busy playing) to show us her dance when she arrived at Uncle Danny's. (We do not go to the Stadium for anything!) But, she had a blast playing with the kids and watching the fireworks! She does repeat her dance performance in two weeks and we'll see it there, in a much smaller venue.
Here's the family waiting for the fireworks to begin. Four of the six siblings in Doug's family were there with theirs. It makes for a fun crowd and good food! I just pointed and shot in the total darkness, with the flash. Here's what we got... followed by a lot of blind eyes! We laughed so hard at this picture because Quayd was coughing!
As the babes said when they were younger, "BOOM-FIRES!"
Here's Quayd, just before he left for his date. He's silly!
Before we built the s'more fire, I asked Grace to get her hair pulled back in a pony so that it was safe and away from the fire. Here's how she came outside. Only Grace would dress in all white for a campfire with a matching white grocery sack on her lovely curly locks!
ZJ was given the same isntructions. The pony wasn't a problem. She just felt the need to roll up her sweats. She's too funny! Weird thing about these pix is that it was dark, almost totally. Strange how the lens changes the light.
Quayd played with Zuey-Lewis until Zuley was worn out! We laughed and laughed. Go-Go just about ripped Zuey's head off when he thought he was going to hurt Quayd.
It really was laid back, casual and care-free all weekend...just the way we like them. Life is good!
Better to be the one who smiled than the one who didn't smile back.
Okay, this is rude. I know it is. BUT. I'm beside myself. And if they read it, I. Don't. Care. We have a home next to us that has been our nightmare since shortly after we bought this home. When we purchased this home, there was a young couple in the home next door that kept the lawn groomed, gardened, took such pride in the home. It was darling. Later, we discovered they were renting the home when he graduated and they told us they were moving. After that, we've had several renters and with each new renter, the home declined. It was unkept, there was a dog that threatened to bite your head off if you closed a cupboard in your own kitchen, a single mom who abused her son quite loudly, some partying neighbors. It's been rough.
Then, last year, a cute family moved in. We had hope! Seven kids...ages 2-14. They are cute kids. One of them, the oldest, has become our girls' close friend. Five boys. Five very loud boys. The kids are home schooled. So, they don't keep the same hours as most kids. When most kids are getting in bed for school nights, they are still outside playing. When most kids are getting up to go to school, they are already outside playing. And they are L.O.U.D. They have literal screaming contests. CONSTANTLY! Screaming at the top of your lungs screaming. Screaming so loud that there's been times I thought someone was dying and I should call 911 screaming. Have I mentioned that they scream?
In the past year, they've beaten on our windows with dirty wet sand filled socks at 6AM, rang the doorbell until it buzzes instead of rings, climbed the fence and gotten into our cherries, left bikes and toys in our driveway and yard, and they scream. A lot. A. LOT.
Now, I'm fine with toys in the yard. They're kids. I'm fine with them being loud all day long every day. BUT. I'm NOT fine with them screaming at the top of their lungs fifteen feet from our bedroom window at 10:57PM while my husband, who gets up for work at 1:55AM or 3:55AM, is trying to sleep. I've gone over and asked them if they could play on the other side of the home when it's late and Doug is sleeping. I've gotten out of bed and, in my pajamas, gone over and asked if they could please keep it down. Doug sleeps with earplugs. They still keep him awake. They scream!
Now, I realize that it's summer and kids play outside late. I get that. And I'd hate to have some cranky neighbor telling my kids to be quiet all the time. But, really. If my kids were making this kind of noise and screaming like this at 3 in the afternoon, I'd be telling them to "knock it off" or they'd be coming inside. But, at 10PM, there's a noise ordinance. If my kids were making that kind of noise at 10PM and especially at 11:15, there would be more of a repercussion that just coming inside! My kids would not be outside at 11:15 in the first place and they are teens!.
Last night, I was so frustrated! 11:15 and they are still screaming. I recorded it from inside my gallery on the iPad and you can hear it as though I am holding the mike up to them. It's that loud.
Why am I writing this on my blog? Because I'm beside myself. I don't know what to do. I don't want to call the police on my neighbors. I don't want to be the cranky neighbor. But, I don't think that I'm being unreasonable. And I realize, my southern upbringing leans to some seriously high expectations about manners. But, seriously? Common courtesy, in my opinion, says you don't let your kids sit and scream blood curdling screams all day and all night or ever! Screaming is for blood or fire! Common courtesy says that that when it's dark outside, some people sleep and it's time to settle down. Common courtesy says that when your neighbor comes over and asks you, several times, late at night, in their pajamas, and obviously climbing out of bed to talk with you and plead with you, you "encourage" your children to be quiet! OR Here's an idea! BRING THEM INSIDE! Common courtesy says that when you live in a neighborhood, you try to be respectful of your neighbors all day long every day.
I'm seriously seeking a solution. Here's a few I've thought of:
I told Doug at 3:50 this morning, "I want to turn the Bose Dock on as high as it can go and play "Super Massive Black Hole" out on the deck, aimed at their kids bedroom window!" Wake up every kid in their house and let them deal with it for a few hours instead of sleeping.
Call the police. (We go to church with these people. We live next to them. I don't want to be enemies.)
Start going outside and screaming at them every night... which would wake Doug even more.
What the heck should I do? Glaring at the kids has failed. Telling the kids has failed. Asking the parents politely has failed. Moving sounds divine, but really? Thoughts? ETA: We are not the only ones in the neighborhood to hear or resent the noise. It comes up in conversation often. It's out of control.
This is beyond frustrating. I try to be positive. I try to seek peace. But, REALLY? And notice how I didn't even get going about their sad pets. I'm ready to put up a "For Sale" sign. I'm tired. I'm cranky. Enough said.
Other than that, life is good. And the quote today, comes from Doug:
SILENCE IS GOLDEN!!!!
It's hard to blog when there's nothing to blog about. We are smack dab in the middle of our lazy summer days. The kids and I slept in, had a delicious brunch, spent the afternoon in the pool and talking about life. Dinner was super easy and tasty. A swim in the pool and it's bedtime now. It reminds me of the old Cheech and Chong recording from 1970... "The first day of summer, I woke up. Then, I went downtown to hang out at the drug store. The second day of summer, I woke up. Then, I went downtown to hang out at the drug store....the third...the fourth... the eight day of summer, I woke up. Then I got a job downtown, keeping kids from hanging out at the drugstore." Hey, I'm a product of that era... it was funny then.
Brunch... Crepes with Nutella, fresh strawberries, bananas, blueberries and powdered sugar. Oh my! SO tasty. Here's the recipe for crepes.
It's been an odd Tuesday. Denise and I did not go to lunch because she's having major jaw surgery. Instead, I sat waiting for a call from her family. ZJ is still sick, so we watched Akeelah and the Bees (wonderful story) together while Quayd and Grace spent the afternoon out in the pool. Tonight, we'll get the lawn mowed and pick cherries instead of the kids going to Young Women/Young Men. (None this week since it's the holiday.) An odd Tuesday, indeed.
I have absolutely nothing else to say, other than life is good. And it is. Somedays may feel out of sorts, but it's always good.
Wait. I will say that we've never seen a dog adapt to a family so quickly as Zuey has. Holy Cow. It's like he's been with us since he was born. We adore him!
Okay. Now. Life is good.
No. Wait! I was going to share the pix of ZJ's cactus. She brought home a cactus over a month ago from the cabin and stuck it in a planter, filled with potting soil and topped with sand. Last week, she said that it was growing something. This week... a beautitul yellow blossom which the next day was a lovely apricot and it has a new blossom beginning on the side. She is so thrilled! It is lovely. It's my happy thought for the day.
With freedom, books, flowers and the moon,
who could not be happy?
Liza and Buddy are gone. Sadness. I always feel those empty arms for a few days after they leave. We had a wonderful visit though. I can't get enough of that baby. I can't get enough time with my girl. That's all I can say about that without getting teary-eyed. We did have a lovely Friday before they left. Buddy and Liza, Doug and I went to lunch at Cafe Sabor, dining on the patio, which is one of my favorite places on earth to eat. I tried something new for a change and will definitely order it again... a shrimp burrito. Oh my! Aylabelle entertained us with limes. She loves them! And cherries! She couldn't get enough of our fresh cherries!
A few other fun pix from Liza and Buddy's visit...
Here's my beautiful girl picking cherries. They were ripening just in time for them to take home a gallon bag full and eat them all week long! Isn't Liza gorgeous. That girl! There are no words!
One of my favorite things about Liza coming home is that she plays piano! This fall, if things go the way we are planning, we'll be sending the piano to Arizona. I'll miss knowing that she'll come home to play but love that she'll have it at her home to play and to begin teaching Aylabelle!
Aylabelle was crawling around the corner into the kitchen her first day here when Doug walked in not knowing. She was spooked and it made her jump back so quickly. She's been a little stand-offish to Doug ever since. It was only the last two days that she warmed up to him again. I was glad for that because I know he was dying to hold her. She's a mama's girl anyway, so if Liza is around, she wants her mommy. Thankfully, Doug and Aylabelle had some good time together on Saturday before they left! He loves this little girl! He took her outside in a diaper so she could "get some Vitamin D". Only Doug. He's so funny.
Saying goodbye on Saturday morning was hard. So hard. I never say goodbye to them that I don't imagine how it was for my mom putting me on a plane to come to Utah, me at age 18, knowing that more than likely, I'd never come home again. And that was the case. At least, I know, Liza will always come home, if only for a few days at a time. I can't even let my mind go on about the fact that Aylabelle and her future siblings will not have a grammie around the corner. I survived it. They will too. But, that doesn't mean I have to like it. I'll just focus on the time that we do have together and be thankful for Skype, which we did five seconds after they pulled into their driveway last night. A happy thought! And there's always the thought of more siblings! (NOT an announcement, just wishful future thinking! wink-wink!) I love that baby!
On Thursday, our neighbor, Kay, the wife of our chief of police, called. She told us that a week before, an abandoned puppy had been brought into the shelter. To no avail, the pup had not been claimed and was going to have to be put down. She said that on Thursday morning, her husband mentioned that the cute little pooch was on it's last day. She asked him to bring the dog home to her and said she'd find a place for him herself. She said that all day long, she kept having the impression, "Call the Corbridges." So, at dinnertime, she did. She shared the story and said that that there was no pressure, but.... would we like to meet him?" Five minutes later, he was on our doorstep, still wrapped in a towel from his bath. ZJ took one look. Okay, I took one look. It was love at first sight. He's adorable. The police scanner code for the Smithfield Police Dept is "Zulu". So, ZJ and I decided to name him Zulu, short for Zuey Lewis. We call him Zuey. We're strange about dog names, as is obvious. But, Zuey has stolen our hearts!
Aylabelle loved Zuey and he loved her right back!
When the kids got home from Youth Conference, they walked in and saw Zuey. Oh my word! They went crazy with excitement! Grace cried. They were thrilled and have not stopped smiling and oohing and aahing over him yet!
Grace is on the phone to Liza as I'm typing. I was about to write about their youth conference experience. Liza just asked her about it, so I'm typing her words as she speaks....
"We went to the Pioneer Park above SLC. That's the place where Brigham Young said, "This is the place" when he saw the Salt Lake Valley for the first time. Then, we went up to the cemetery where the prophets are buried. That was pretty spiritual. We went up to our dorms and I got to be with everyone I know.
After that we went to the Manti Pagent. (This is a beautiful live "play" that takes place on the grounds of the Manti LDS Temple hill. It's amazing and spectacular!) It was just great. I loved it. It was my favorite part. I loved the story and the Spirit in it. It was a really great experience.
That night, M kept me up til at least 3 0r 4 cuz she kept talking, but I eventually went to sleep. I was really tired the next day! The second day, we went to the church to eat breakfast. We had omelettes and fruit. And then, we went to the Manti Temple and we were going to weed the outside so it could be pretty. That was our service project. Then, we went back to our dorms and spent an hour there to get ready and change.
Then, we went to the other church and we got to hear someone like Jon Bytheway, except his name was Hank Smith. He was talking about fighting for our family. He was really cool. I really liked him. He was hilarious. I think he has a website or something. He was really awesome.
The sad thing is that I left my blanket on the bus and never got it back. Then, we went back the other church. We went to at least two churches and the temple which was really fun. We had line dancing. It was really fun. I wasn't good at it, although I tried. After that, we went back to the dorms and watched all sorts of cool episodes on Nickelodeon on the bigscreen. Then we went to bed. It was really late. Everyone else went to bed and M and I slept in the room where the TV was. I thought M was going to turn it off. I fell asleep before her. And in the morning, we woke up, it was still on and we woke up to this really weird cartoon. We slept with it on all night.
Then after that, on Saturday, we went to the church and had devotional testimony meeting. Everyone was bearing their testimony about their hero. I didn't bear my testimony because I didn't really know who my hero was. Then I thought about it a lot and I decided that my hero was my sisters. I really liked that part. Then, we spent an extra 45 minutes in their bearing our testimonies cause we were supposed to leave, but, at 12:30 we came home on the buses and I got to go on Quayd's bus. That was really cool! It was a great experience."
Quayd had a whole other version. His version included that the Pageant was super-spiritual and Hank Smith was AWESOME! But, it also included a story about being romantic and tossing pebbles at a girls dorm window until her roommate came out and said, "Back off!" Then, he had to apologize to the girl and all ended well. He also told lots of stories about "the guys" and his friends and the girls. He loved the line dancing. He loved the spiritual side of things. The one story that he did go into great detail was about the rain and wind. Apparently, the night of the Pageant, it had rained before and when they got there. The grass was wet. (You sit on the lawn to see the temple. This photo below was taken by friend, Duane Williams, from another ward.) Anyway, apparently, the skies opened in a circle right above and around the temple. The rain and wind stopped and the weather co-operated all around where they were but on the perimeters, the weather continued to storm. He thought that was pretty cool.
I'm just so grateful that they got to attend this wonderful conference. They both came in the door with big smiles and Grace was in tears as she told us about it. What a gift for them both! And all of our youth!
And in other news...
Quayd is learning that having a job isn't always easy or convenient. His friends called last night to invite him to Lagoon Amusement Park today. He was so excited to be invited and then had to say no because he was scheduled to work. I told him that he'd gotten the three days off last week and he needed to be there, not trade shifts, today. He said, "Having a job is hard!" I said, "Well, if you didn't have the job and they called to invite you to Lagoon, you wouldn't have the money to go anyway. So, look at it this way, when it comes time for proms and dances, you can schedule in advance and have the money to do the fun stuff that goes with it." He's learning fast. Welcome to grown-up life!
ZJ has been so sick since last Thursday. She's not seen the doctor but she's coughed until her ribs hurt, suffered through the fever and chills and now seems to be over the bad part. She hasn't eaten much all weekend and just lies around with Zuey Lewis. Crazy. We don't even know anyone who's sick. Where did she get it!? She didn't like having to stay away from Aylabelle at all!
Carol's husband, Robert, begins his cancer treatments today.
Denise is having major jaw surgery tomorrow.
The fireworks and one of our favorite nights of the year, at Doug's brother's home, is this week. It's a busy scheduled week with lots going on. Life is good.
It's a good day to have a good day!
Life just keeps moving at such a fast pace. I see Aylabelle, who has so many similar characteristics of Liza as a baby...both physically and in her little activities. Liza was a "hummer". When she would nurse, she would "mmmm-mmm-mmm" all the time. As a toddler, she would "mmm" while she ate. Even when she was in elementary school, I'd catch her "humming" when she ate something and the more she liked it, the more she hmmmmed. Aylabelle does the same thing. I love it. The cherries off our trees make her "roar", not hum. She loves them!
I think ZJ grows up right before my eyes. I sat watching her at lunch with her sisters and saw this beautiful young lady, who's become a teenager, entirely, too fast! Her wit is so appealing. She makes me laugh. All the time. The girl has got chutzpah. She made me laugh so hard yesterday. We have four cherry trees that are ripening right now. We also have some neighbor children who have picked one tree, literally, bare, up as high as they can reach. The tree is bare to a certain line and then covered with cherries above that line. ZJ came in yesterday with this sign she'd made. I had to remind her that the children doing the picking are young and can't read, but her personality shows in her words. She's a hoot! I especially love the heart at the end. And no. she did not hang the sign.
Yesterday after Doug got home from work, we all played games around the table and had a ball. I sat looking at my family, with my sweet granddaughter crawling (dancing to Michael Jackson under the table) and all of us gathered together around it, laughing, having a great time. I don't think that anyone realized how emotional I was, but it moved me to tears to see us just have such fun together... and all so grown up. WOW. I felt so completely blessed! It was one of those "Can we please stop the clock and freeze this moment forever?" moments.
We played Telestrations, our new favorite game, and we laughed so hard at some of the comments and drawings. Really, it's a must have game for every family.
Aylabelle is just a delight to watch. She keeps us totally entertained every waking moment!Download Trim.8026E1CD-DD0F-4A17-9080-2D1258961265
Then, everyone started to scatter. Liza and Buddy went off to dinner with another friend couple. The girls were busy doing their own thing. Quayd went off to a friend's house for a birthday party. I thought to myself, "He's really becoming a young man!" He's so social and friendly to everyone. Here, Liza and Buddy are here and he's still off to hang with his friends, working, doing his own thing but still "making" time for them. Liza and I visited with him after the party and he told me all about the Lego movie that they'd watched together. He's got a great group of amazing boys that he calls friends...all are clean and wholesome, inside and out. They are making good choices. Quayd makes me happy! When he left this morning, he told me to make sure that Liza knew that he was sorry he hadn't been around to spend as much time as normal with them. I thought, You're almost seventeen. This is your normal now. Goll, I love that kid!
Liza, Buddy and I sat up playing cards until after 1 last night. It was good to talk and felt so so good to be playing cards! Grace was sad that she couldn't join in but she needed some sleep, which barely came, she informed me this morning. She was too excited!
Grace was up curling her hair at 5. Doug was in the kitchen making his blender drink at the same time. Quayd was up at 6. They got ready and I made breakfast and packed their sack lunches for the trip. They were so excited! (I kept thinking about Quayd's experience of almost not being able to go. Tender mercy, indeed!) They loaded the things up into the truck, we had family prayer and we raced over to the Stake Center where we were greeted by a ton of very happy and excited youth!
The Stake seemed to be so organized. They had ribbons for each ward to tie to their belongings so that things were all dispensed at the University where they'll be staying with ease. The kids were given their youth conference t-shirts to put on. Lots of giggles and teasing. The leaders were busy keeping on top of things. I just know that this will be a wonderful experience and am praying that one of the leaders brought a good camera to share some pix with us later!
We said our goodbyes and I pulled away before the tears started to fall. Happy tears for them. Sad tears for me because they really are growing up too quickly!
I came home and had a good visit on the phone with Doug's brother about the cabin. Progress is being made, but there are still so so many decisions in the air.
Everyone's still asleep and I'm enjoying the silence of the moment. I'm certain that if I lie down for a nap, it will insure that everyone else wakes up immediately for breakfast. I got about 3 hours of sleep. ZJ and I are going to the movies this afternoon. It will be a good naptime for me. Tonight, steaks on the grill and just some quiet time with ZJ, Liza and Buddy. Doug has the rest of the weekend off. It will be a wonderful weekend at home.
I thought about it this morning, as I drove home. Liza and Buddy will be leaving just hours before Quayd and Grace return... another tender mercy for me! Something to be very excited about after being very sad to see them go. Time flies just too quickly... the days, the weeks, the years. The minutes. Really.
I have been quite emotional for the past few weeks. The tears are near the surface all the time... part of it is that I feel such happiness and joy in my own immediate world. Part is that there is so much happening in the lives of those I love so dearly. One thing I do know is that I am so so grateful for Heavenly Father's Plan of Happiness, that helps me to remember to focus on "the big picture". Were it not for that, life would be so much more difficult. I'm also grateful for the many tender mercies shown to me each day in my life that remind me that each and every one of us does matter. I'm also grateful to be so busy moving forward that I don't have a lot of time to sit and worry about the things I can not control. Prayer is much better than worrying.
Life is good.
HAPPY birthday, Kelly!
Lunch with my girls at Buffalo Wild Wings... a first ever. Great time. Good food. We sat outside in a pleasant summer breeze, where it's not as noisy. It's been one of my favorite days ever! Went shopping before and after. Before to buy Kelly a large laundry basket of goodies to make her clean, beautiful and nummy smelling! After to buy each of the babes and Aylabelle some fun summer clothes. Old Navy loves us. We love Old Navy!
I looked at this photo and was totally overwhelmed. I have been so blessed with these five lovely beauties. There are no words for how I love them each...and each in their own special ways. We had the most delightful time together. It will be a memory that I will cherish always! And hopefully, it won't be the last time we can all get together and make such a wonderful memory!
We were celebrating Kelly's 34th birthday. I look at this picture and can't get over the fact that Zeej and Grace look so grown up and that Kelly is actually 34 and that Liza is such a wonderful Mommy.
LIFE IS GOOD!!!
A mother's greatest masterpiece is her children.
Yesterday, Liza, Buddy, Aylabelle and I met Denise at Firehouse for lunch. Liza and Buddy had a few errands to run and since Aylabelle had fallen asleep in the car after lunch, I gladly sat outside with her. When she woke up, we played peekaboo and a few other fun little games. I decided that we needed to take our first selfie together. It made me laugh! I can not get enough of this baby. I adore her. She's stolen my heart completely!
Really, she's an angel...just like her mommy.
There are no words. I love this happy little family!
And a few other ramblings...
A beautiful day beings with a beautiful mindset. When you wake up, take a second to think about what a privilege it is to simply be alive. The moment we start acting like life is a blessing, I assure you, it will start to feel like one.
It's been a wonderful weekend visiting with Liza, Buddy and Aylabelle!
Friday morning, Doug and I did some running of errands and grabbed a quick moment alone at Black Pearl for lunch before all of the action began. Liza texted cryptic clues all the way through the valley so that we'd be guessing where they actually where. The last clue, "laundry" made me guess some apartments on the highway and know that they were only blocks away. We were waiting outside by the road and Buddy drove right past the house with Liza waving hello. A quick U-turn and we were all hugging and fussing over the baby! HAPPINESS!!
We had a simple dinner and Buddy was off to his best friend's home for the evening. Liza and Aylabelle stayed with us, which was a gift for me! Buddy stayed at Derek's until 1AM. Liza and I just talked and talked until everyone had gone to bed. Aylabelle slept between us on the daybed in the gallery while we gabbed. Oh, how I love these girls!
The purpose for this trip is for Liza and Buddy to attend the LDS Temple Sealing of Derek and his wife, and also for them to attend the wedding reception of his cousin. So, on Saturday, they attended one sealing, two dinners and a reception. It was a busy day. We kept Aylabelle at home for the wedding in the morning and she went with them for the remainder of the day to the rest of the festivities. I was touched when Liza texted a five generation photo of Aylabelle, Buddy, his dad, grandma and great-grandma. Awesome!
Aylabelle has taken quite the liking to Quayd. Everytime Quayd enters the room, she's tickled. When he went to work on Saturday, she got the sweetest little poutyface and just burst into tears. He's loving that! She's a delightful baby. She's full of energy, for sure, but she is just so dang sweet. And those eyes! WOW!
This toy has been in our family since Quayd was a baby. It's the one baby toy I've kept. Aylabelle loves it!
We spent lots of time outside and she loved playing "tag" on the trampoline.
It's funny to me... our family has always found comfort in just "chillin" on the trampoline in the shade. No matter how old. Even Denise and I have just layed out on it in the shade to talk. So, it was natural for us to gravitate to the back yard. Grace took a little teasing and had lots of giggling pix, but this was my favorite, when she was just listening and thinking. Grace loves being "a grown-up".
My favorite guy!
When Aylabelle saw the pool, she was all excited to get in. However, the water is still barely 65 degrees. It will be a week before it's warm enough to enjoy, if we have a week of hot days!
She ate the whole thing!
Aylabelle loves when Liza plays "Belly Button" and gives her "raspberries". When Quayd came in from the pool, Aylabelle saw her opportunity. She got the giggles and actually thought she'd give Quayd a raspberry. We all just laughed out loud. (By the way, Quayd's trunks are not sure. It's just how he was laying on the floor. That looks strange.)
Baby bathtime is one of my favorite things! Apparently, Aylabelle agrees!
Okay, one more, just because.
On Saturday, after Aylabelle left with her mom and dad, we spent most of the afternoon and early evening in the back yard. The netting is up on the cherries, the kids swam, the garden was attended to and Doug and I enjoyed a lot of time on the swing in the shade... a lot... like hours. It was the perfect way to spend the first afternoon/evening of summer!
Quayd's up on the roof. We purchased six 12 ' square nets and sewed them together like a quilt. Doug came up with a great idea. We tied a large tarp to the netting and drug the tarp across the top of the trees. The netting didn't get stuck in the trees until it was completely over the top. Doug's so smart! Then, it was just adjust and tie to the fence so that it stays in place. Perfect! And two days later, the birds are leaving the cherries alone. Honestly, one day last week, I saw four robins walking down the sidewalk in a row with cherries in their mouth. It was time! Like Doug said, "We'd be happy to share if they'd eat the whole thing, but they take a bite out of one and move to the next one for the next bite." Sorry birds.
Love these guys!
Speaking of summer, we called my mother at dinnertime, after Quayd got home from work and sang Happy Birthday to her. Mom is 74. She was just thrilled to have had Liza and Buddy spend the night before with her and to be able to meet Aylabelle for the first time.
Liza and Buddy are spending the first few days of their visit at his family's home. Buddy's mom is actually in Arizona with his sister and her family right now. So, they are keeping his dad company. They'll stay with us the second half of their trip.
I was so surprised when Liza walked into Relief Society yesterday morning. I didn't even notice who it was that walked in and sat across the aisle and a row in front of me for a few seconds. When I did, I gasped and started to cry! (I'm a dork, I know.) Liza slid over a seat and I joined her, giving her a big hug and the tears would not stop falling! I was so happy to have her there. When I asked, "Where's Aylabelle?", she said, "She's sleeping in the car." I knew that meant that Buddy was sitting with her and then Liza teased, "I"ll check on her after this." Har-har. She slept clear through my Sunday School class and had to be woken up for Sacrament Meeting. She was a live wire through the meeting, and I gladly offered to take her out to diaper her and then go for a little sit under the pine trees. I was wishing I had my camera so bad! When I came back inside just in time for the closing prayer, Buddy asked, "Did you go home to change her diaper?" ;) I said we'd been enjoying the breeze under the pine trees. Liza teased, "What are you teaching my daughter!?" Yep, Grammies get away with things like that.
The Sacrament Meeting was extra special to us because Miki's big brother, Kayson, spoke. He leaves tomorrow for his LDS Mission to El Salvador. We adore Kayson. I can't get enough of him. He's had just a special place in my heart for years. Kayson gave a great talk and is so prepared. We just love him! I can't say it enough. Following church, we spend the next several hours at the B's, enjoying a fun dinner and visit with friends and Stott's family. We didn't want to leave! It was a wonderful Sabbath. Liza and Buddy stayed for quite a while before having to leave and have dinner at his grandma's. I teased that they are eating a lot of "double meals" over the weekend. Aylabelle loved playing with Quayd on the lawn and eating ice while we all just sat and admired her. This baby is so loved! Miki would just lie on the grass watching her. My camera battery died and I didn't have the camera bag, so I got exactly two photos. Sadness! Here's Kayson...Elder Barwick, that is.
And here's Miki, who's growing up much too quickly. She's adorable and so dang smart. Isn't she pretty!
Today, lunch with Denise and Liza and Buddy and Aylabelle. Then, they'll go back to his family for a cookout. This is working out well because we are getting to see them a bit, even on their days away. It allows me to give the babes their attention too.
Speaking of which, oh my heck, ZJ! Last night, we were in the kitchen after the day at the B's. I was making sandwiches for a snack and ZJ got this very serious face. "I'm going to show no emotion for the next hour." I looked at her like "Not!" and she burst out in laughter with that huge tinsel grin, which she proudly wears. Literally, it had not been two seconds of sober, then laughter and Grace's immediate response, "Total fail, Zee, Total fail." We all lost it! Zeej made several attempts at the sober hour but never made it past twenty seconds.
Tomorrow, we will prepare for the Paparazzi party, which is in the evening. The kids are preparing for Youth Conference. It's the biggest our stake has done in a decade and Quayd didn't put in for the time off work, so he's scheduled to work the entire weekend, every day of the conference. I was sick! I'd reminded him over and over but he didn't get that he had to do it that far in advance. So, he's going to be trying to trade shifts with kids in other stakes to be able to get off the weekend. This is huge! He needs to be there. We are just praying that he can find someone to cover for him. Grace can hardly wait. If things go right, Zeej will be here alone with Liza and I until they head back to Arizona. (You have to be 14 for YC.) We'll make it a fun weekend. Kelly's birthday is Wednesday and we're trying to put something together for that. She's not even met Aylabelle yet.
We're all so happy to be together. The weather is beautiful. Summer is awesome. Life is good!
Life is about using the whole box of crayons.
Liza just texted from Provo! That's only two hours away. a few quick ramblings....
Life is good. And so is FAST internet that stays connected all the time!
The grass is greener where you water it.
With all that's going on in our world right now, my friend mentioned this beautiful song yesterday. I listened to it and bawled. Perfection. I had to share.
I am not at liberty to share any more details than this, but I do feel that the family would appreciate any and all prayers...A close family member is in ICU with critical complications following the delivery of a beautiful baby. They are a very private family. But, please, if you could, just keep them in your prayers.
The furnace ran all night and when I picked Quayd up after work at midnight last night, the heat was on in the Expedition. It be c-o-l-d!
Last night, I took the girls to the movies. We were going to see "Heaven is For Real" and realized that we had misread the time and were an hour late. SO. We ended up seeing Spiderman 2. I sent Doug a text before it began, "Ended up at Spidey. Shoot me!" He wrote back a big LOL. I actually ended up loving the movie. I texted Quayd a few lines from the movie so that when he had his break, he'd know we had seen it. (He's seen it twice already.) He wrote back, "YOU DIDN'T!!? Did you love it!?" I wrote back, "Almost as much as I love you!" Score for "cool moms"...just sayin'.
Today... grocery shopping for Liza and Buddy's visit! Fresh sheets on ZJ's bed for them! Treats in Grace's fridge for them! A little somethin-somethin for Aylabelle! They'll be here tomorrow! Life is good!
When it rains, look for rainbows. When it's dark, look for stars.
Still cold! Crazy that it feels like November. INSANE. It was so odd to hear the furnace kicking on and off all night long. Liza's leaving Arizona tomorrow and I'm just praying for some warmth before she arrives. She no likee cold and we want her to want to come home ... if she comes in late June and has to deal with winter, that doesn't help her want to come in January!
We've been busy doing little errands and such, getting ready for them to arrive! Can. Not. WAIT!!! So excited! I'm counting hours and in less than 48, they'll be here! They are stopping at my mother's on the way to spend the night, so that Mom can meet Aylabelle. She's not seen anything but pictures yet and I think my mother is almost as excited as I am. I'm glad that Mom is half way... a perfect stopping point for us all when we drive down to Arizona. Mom suggested the other day that I pack the kids up and bring them down to visit. I said, "We can't because we are too involved with the cabin right now." BUT. I thought, "Mom, if I'm coming that far, I'm going to spend the night and head right on to see my girls!" Shhhh. Don't say I thought that!
Natalie and I had lunch this morning. Her son had broken his ankle last night at football practice. Never a dull moment for anyone. We were talking about how life brings it's problems and none of us get by without facing some or a lot of them. How important it is for us all to deal with them with the understanding that that's what we are here for. Although, sometimes, it's not easy to understand, I believe that how we face our challenges is the most important part of the challenge. I really do believe that.
Speaking of challenges, the family member who had their own major challenge is improving and witnessing miracles already. We are feeling such gratitude for their improvement and felt a very strong bond as family, in our prayers. Quayd's prayer yesterday touched my heart and brought tears to my eyes. Although he's almost seventeen, and he's all big and tough, I do believe that he has the faith of a child. I love that about him! His first words this morning when he came up for breakfast, "How's ____?"
Total opposite direction of thoughts... CenturyLink guarantees that they'll be here on Friday morning at 9:45. Still debating on Comcast. We'll see.
The cherries on our trees are ripening. We were stunned when we came home from five days at the cabin and found them turning. Every time I look out the window, I see a big fat robin or three rolling big fat cherries along the sidewalk. Not amused. Tonight's project... to cover the cherry trees with their netting before the robins get them all!
Life is good. Busy, fun, crazy, sometimes challenging, but good.
a beautiful heart can bring things into your life
that all the money in the world couldn't obtain.
It's COLD! The furnace is running. It snowed in the mountains last night. INSANE! We're all dressed in winter clothes. So much for the flip flops and sound of the splashing pool this afternoon. A lovely mid-June day in Cache Valley!
Last night, we had the siblings over for dinner and a family meeting to continue the plans for the cabin. We had a great visit and lots of laughs. I am so loving this time together with family. The kids thought we were pretty funny laughing upstairs. Again, I think that the best thing from this whole flood situation has been the time spent together as family.
This morning, we were awakened by an early phonecall bearing bad news for a family member, who'd been life-flighted last night to a larger hospital. As of now, we are feeling a bit more confident about things. It was tearful and frightening. Lots of prayers were said. It's not my place to share any more details, but, it was quite the scare. Life is just so dang fragile! We never know what the next moment will bring!
Did I mention our furnace is running? Liza will not be amused when she arrives and it's winter again. I've been assuring her for weeks that we'd have nice warm weather when she came. Dang!
Kelly is doing very well with Zaylee. She's doing so well. Just sayin'.
AND last, this dang internet situation has me CRANKY! We've been without internet for almost a full month now. First, an hour of tech support. You need a new modem. We did. Then, 90 minutes of tech support with the new one. Nothing. Tech support schedules a visit. They don't show. I call and ask where they are. They say that someone accidentally closed the ticket. It shows that the work was completed and that we have 100% activity on our DSL. Not so much. Not even 1%. They want to reschedule it again. She says, "We can come out on the 23rd." I said, "WHAT?!!?!?" I explain that we are almost a full month without internet now. That I'm paying extra to AT&T for more data so that I can use the iPad. That we've waited two weeks for their help as it is. She puts me on hold to "double check something."
In the meantime, while I'm on hold, I call Comcast. They tell me that they can have faster internet, better service for less money in three days. ..all while I'm on hold to Centurylink! The CL woman comes back and I tell her that I've just discovered this Comcast news. She transfers me to their "retention team"... in other words, they want to keep us after seventeen years of having their landline, long distance, DSL, and Direct TV. They tell me - no - they promise me that they will call me this morning with a new time to come and fix things. At noon today, nada. I call them and they promise that it will be working by noon on Friday, but that they will try to squeeze me in before then. "I'm holding my breath", says me never. The oddest part is that they've told me I have service everytime they test. They have told me that once it is all resolved, they'll credit my account for the entire time I had no internet service and they will discount our bill $17 for the next year. We'll see how this goes. If I don't have internet by Friday at noon, could someone tell me how is Comcast internet?
That's pretty much it this cold wintry June day! Life is good... even with poor customer service.
Good things come to those who wait but better things come to those who work for it.
We're home! We left last Wednesday for the ranch with Alan and Jill and have had a blast. It was another perfect weekend. We worked, we played, we laughed, we ate. Oh, did we eat. Awesome! We made a lot of progress on the cabin after putting in another near 100 manhours. It was a great weekend of working together and playing and did I mention we ate? We ate so much that we decided on day three, we'd only make brunch and dinner. And we were still full.
Wednesday, as soon as Doug and Quayd got off work, we caravanned up to the ranch. We arrived, unloaded and settled down for the night with treats and a late night showing of Man From Snowy River. Then, we sat up at talked until 2AM. We do talk. A lot.
On Thursday, after a very delicious french toast breakfast, we worked hard. The guys finished emptying the cabin of "things", removed the last two bathroom vanities and began ripping out sheetrock. This lasted most of the day. We had a relaxing evening after all of us showered and cleaned up for the night. Return of the Man from Snowy River followed by the girls' choice, "You Again". Quayd and Alec tolerated it. The guys had worked so hard all day long that they passed out, straight to sleep, when their heads hit the pillows. The girls read while Jill and I visited until 1:55AM.
On Friday morning, bright and early, the man who delivers the huge dumpsters, Dumpster #3, arrived. We visited with him for a while, learned a thing or two, and then following a big breakfast, we all "suited up" and got busy again for our biggest day of work. The guys removed a lot of damaged sheetrock. It was amazing how quickly and how drastically things changed. The wet smell began to improve a teeny tiny bit, but the men still needed to wear their respirators. It's BAD! I can not say clearly enough how hard these guys worked.
I was proud of Quayd working right along side the men. This has been a nasty, dirty, smelly job. But, he's not even complained, thankfully, because his work has been valued. Quayd removed most of the entire vinyl floor covering himself!
Alan amazes me with his skill and knowledge. Jill works almost as hard as he does and thier sons just blow me away. Alan and Jill have done a great job of teaching their children, who are all now adults, the value of work!
On Saturday, there were a few last things that needed to be done. The dumpster was full and the men were all achy and sore from all the lifting and hauling that they had done for the previous two days. With the dumpster already overflowing, work was not as demanding on Saturday, but still, there were things to be done. We did take a drive into town in the afternoon for some more ice and Coke and a few more impulse purchased because, heaven forbid, we run out of munchies. HARDLY! Saturday evening, after cleaning up and a tasty dinner, we settled down another movie and more gab.
Sunday, I made a delicious strata and sausage for Fathers Day Brunch. We all played Apples to Apples for a while, took naps, visited some more then cleaned up and headed home in the late afternoon. We were home by 6, got everything put away and were ready for bed by 8.
It was a lonnnnnng weekend. BUT. Progress was made! We are hopeful that it will only require one more trip of demolition, before we are able to approach the beginnings of putting things back together. Decisions need to be made. A family meeting will be held and we will begin to proceed with the next phase... remediation. Then, the rebuild. Again, I'm absolutely loving that this whole nasty, smelly, dirty, quite gross experience has been such a fun, uplifting, positive, learning, bonding experience for us all. It's been mentioned several times, that it' s so much fun working together and that this has been a bonding experience. So, I'm reminded, once again, that there is good that can come from every horrible situation.
A few ramblings about the weekend...
ZJ had gotten her braces on Wednesday morning at 8AM. Much of her weekend was painful, as her cheeks were just raw from the adjustment. She didn't complain much, but she did take several ibuprofen. The highlight of each day for her was when the latenight train (it comes by once a day on weekdays, usually between 10pm and 1am) would come behind the cabin. She'd race out the door and onto the back deck and motion for the train driver to honk. Every night but Friday, she got a happy honk! The other favorite for all the kids for decades is to leave pennies on the track and go up the find the flattened copper shapes the next morning.
While waiting for my turn to shower, I enjoyed a little rest, lying on the hill in front of the cabin. I had my camera and kept watching this very chatty blackbird as she carried whatever this was in her mouth from tree to tree for 20 minutes. We never did see her nest.
Have I mentioned how much I love watching the guys work together?
Here's where we left off this weekend.
This is my new favorite view from the cabin. I've always looked in other directions but this view of the winding river, which is really high at this time of the year, was a spectacular view at every time of day or night. Each time, as the sun is in different places, the greens are brighter or darker or just more beautiful. This really is heaven on earth for our family.
This week, I'll be counting down the hours as Liza, Buddy and Aylabelle will be arriving on Friday! We are more excited than words can say! I can not wait to hug my girls!!! The pool is up and needing attention with us being away for five days. The kids are excited about swimming and playing with Aylabelle! The garden is growing and looking good! We are in full swing summer, with the bonus of spending extra time at the ranch. Life is good...and even it's curve balls can become something wonderful.
A negative mind will never give you a positive life.
Keeping it short again today. I do have internet at the moment, thanks to Pam, for her teaching me how to do a Personal Hotspot. I'll use it minimally, but hey. It's working. Happy day!
First, for my own benefit, I want to post these pix from the past few days.
When Quayd received his first paycheck, for only one day of work and an hour of training, he was one happy camper.
Doug showed him how the hours are kept, his actual pay per hour and explaining taxes. Quayd's response, "I don't like taxes." Join the club, Lovebug. Join the club.
And yes, the entire family was gathered in the bathroom for the event. How we ended up in there, I don't know, but oh well. We were all decent. (ha!)
The girls and I had so much fun shopping for furniture and replacement items for the cabin. It was actually long and tiring but very fun. I can't believe with all of the photos I took of furniture, I only got one of the girls. My brain was in "work" mode, I suppose. It was an eleven hour day.
The pool is up. It has a small 3/16" tear at the bottom seam. Doug, ever the perfectionist about things, is insisting that we not completely fill it until the kit to repair it arrives. The kids aren't bothered at all by the fact that there is only three feet of water in it or that the water is fah-reeezzzzing cold... they are loving it... as long as they stay away from that side. Again, no pix of them in it. I was too busy trying to catch up on a few things we didn't get done during the day while they were outside swimming away last night. Aaahhhh, Summer!
A note about Robert. He will begin Chemo and Radiation. Again, there are no words... except please keep them in your prayers.
Yesterday, I spent the day with Carol's sister, Mary Ann and Mary, Carol's mother, two very lovely women. We took a three hour drive up to visit Carol and Robert at their home. Robert is recouperating well. He was quiet and obviously not quite up to a party, but, joined the party, albeit a tame one. A trooper, indeed!
It was just awesome to see Carol in her new "world". Doug and I had planned on going up for an overnighter on the weekend that Carol and Robert were married. But, his health issues changed those plans completely. I was thrilled to be able to see everything and every place so that now when we are talking and Carol says, "I'm sitting on the front porch", I know where she is and what she's looking at and can visualize her exactly.
Their home is lovely. Robert is a farmer/rancher. We were able to take a long drive out to his cabin, with Carol driving the pick-up truck. That alone made me smile. I teased her about driving a truck, which she did great. The farm and ranch are beautiful. It's in a different area of Idaho than Doug grew up in. When we arrived at the ranch, I said, "I thought the Corbridge Ranch was heaven on earth. Now I know that there are two heavens on earth!" It's beautiful! Breathtaking.
My emotions were close to the surface. On one hand, I see Carol just in newlywed bliss being with Robert. On the other hand, this is a nightmare. They are still awaiting answers from the doctor. The not knowing would be killer for me. I am so happy for them to be together. Carol is amazing and upbeat.
Really, I sit here, shaking my head, with tears in my eyes and try to stay focused on "the big picture". BUT. It's hard. This challenge has rocked our whole world. Again, the not knowing is the hardest... not knowing why, not knowing what the heck lies in the future. It's just plain hard.
Doug and I love these two people so much. I didn't share much about the first time we met Robert. We went out for dinner a couple of months ago. Doug and I arrived before them and got our table out on the patio at Cafe Sabor. When Robert and Carol walked around the corner, Doug and I looked at each other and both said, "I know him!" We said that immediately and Robert felt it too. We talked and talked and never did come up with a tangible connection, but the connection was absolutely there. We've been friends forever. We were instantly teasing and laughing and acting like we'd all been in this life together from the beginning. So. Robert is not like "Carol's new husband". He's a part of her, a part of "us". This is an old friendship, even though it is fresh.
The drive with Mary Ann and Mary was awesome. Six hours is a long time in the car together. Mary Ann has been one of my life's heroes since the first time I ever met her. We had a wonderful visit. I met Carol's mom before I even met Carol, so she's an old friend. It was a great visit. A great day.
I came home and share the entire day with Doug before he crawled into bed. We were both exhausted.... Doug's worked four 12 hour shifts this week. That makes for long days. Doug and the girls had grilled steaks for dinner. Quayd had gone to the temple at 8AM with some friends. It had been a long day for us all, so we all went to bed before 9 last night. I noticed as I was turning off the lights that it was still not even dark yet. But, sleep felt good!
Now it's 4 in the morning and I'm wide awake! Today, back to life at home... laundry, ZJ has a party, I have a cabin appointment and meeting, my vacuum needs a new belt... reality. Errands, kids and... drumroll... pool prep! Life is good! Sometimes hard to understand, but good.
Our first official day of summer was pretty casual. We all slept in a bit then did some dejunking, had lunch, and the kids did some more dejunking while I dealt with some cabin business.
It's so amazing to me that this cabin situation is so time-consuming. The week after the discovery of the flood, a friend, who experienced a huge loss in a large fire, told me, "Prepare to eat, sleep, breathe, dream and live this flood for the next six months of your life. It will consume you." I doubted his words, thinking, "Nah, it won't be that big of a deal. The insurance will handle it." Well, we have learned that while we think we have great insurance, that's not always the case. The job of the insurance company is to make money and unfortunately, the adjusters are not quite like the guys you see on TV standing by your side every second of every day. My part in this is minimal to that of one of my brothers-in-law, as he's the living-breathing-sleeping representative for the whole family. It's an overwhelming situation with so much that needs to be managed, but I am glad to have a few talents/skills that can help and am really enjoying the time spent with family in doing so. So, as I see it, the family time and working together has been one benefit coming from this nightmare.
Back to yesterday... Quayd is usually so easy going, but for some reason, he was not in his normal upbeat mood. We all got into the truck to take him to work and then the girls and I were running errands in Logan. ZJ noticing the time and hoping for a stop at Sonic, asked, "Is it Happy Hour?" Quayd had just growled at one of the girls. I said, "It was until Quayd got in the truck!" We all laughed. ZJ thought this was hysterical. Quayd, not so much. I dropped him off and he was grinning from ear to ear because I kept teasing him all the way to work. Later in the evening, we went to the store for a few items and went through his line. He heard my voice and looked up, just grinned and winked at me. I'm glad that he's so forgiving because in this family, there's lots of teasing.
We drove past Sonic when we saw 20 cars in line for Happy Hour. I told the girls that I had a better surprise anyway. We went to Denise's and met her daughter Ashlee, who is a hairdresser. I'd arrange for Ashlee to wax all of our eyebrows. The girls were thrilled, but a little scared. Grace wanted to go first and did great. I went next and screamed, quite dramatically, just to tease ZJ. Then, ZJ had her turn and she was surprised at how little it hurt compared to my scream. They were thrilled! As Ashlee was putting the hot wax on my eyebrows, I asked her to make sure to do it so that I look thirty and thin. She looked at me seriously and said, "You'll have to pay me a lot more than $5 for that!" Yeh, everyone got a good laugh from that zinger! She did a great job on us, then we videotaped Denise getting hers done. Denise has threatened my life if I put the video on my blog, but oh, it would almost be worth it! We were all in tears watching her!
Here's a few pix from the experience...Grace didn't even flinch...
We're off to see Brett, our dentist. ZJ is getting braces! She gets her spacers in today. She's so nervous and so excited. She's growing up much too quickly! Just a few days ago, it hit me that ZJ was Aylabelle's age when she came to us. I can't imagine our lives without her. She is my right arm! Gosh, I love that girl!
The kids are asking for the pool! It's been exceptionally warm, but not hot yet. It doesn't sound good, now that the garden is planted. Next! Life is good!
Our yesterday did get better. The kids and I went to town and did a ton of errands and running. We rewarded ourselves at Black Pearl. The kids were adventurous and each tried a new menu item. I can't believe I didn't take a picture. We were too busy playing to worry about documenting. (I've decided that contrary to popular scrapbooking etiquette, sometimes, really, we don't need pictures to remember every moment.) We did have a great time thought, talking about manners and dating, and jobs and working, and summer!!!
We did make some progress on the birth certificate situation, even without them. We got Quayd's new pants, set up a new savings account in a credit union and then spent the afternoon memorizing pin numbers, account numbers, social security numbers, and so forth.
The highlight of my day, however, was made by my son! The girls opted to sit in the parking lot while Quayd and I went into the bank, which is inside the store he'll be working at. As Quayd was turning in some paperwork to the store, a lady picked up her grocery sack and a Sobe fell out across the floor. Quayd did a literal 15 foot Spiderman dive across the floor to catch that Sobe and hand it to the lady. She was so appreciative of his kindness. I said, "Good job, Bug!" and didn't mention it again until we were at lunch when told the girls and bragged about his Spiderman-like instincts. He loved it. I wanted him to recognize just how important and meaningful it is to others, and to us as his parents, that he always go the extra mile! Go Quayd!
I was a little teary as I dropped him off "for work" later in the afternoon, all dressed in his "uniform" and all by himself. I took a picture of him walking in, went and bought a few things while he was getting his instructions and noticed him coming down from the office as I was walking out. I snuck back in the front door and snapped a candid photo of him officially "on the clock". That was a moment worth remembering!
The girls went to the high school pool with a friend last night, leaving Doug and I alone for dinner two nights in a row. Last night's dinner was Knoor spinach dip and rosemary triscuits on the bed while we watched a pilot episode of a show we'd heard about on Amazon Prime. Oh my. Crackers on the bed. TV. Dinner. Do we have teenagers or what? We have had more time alone in the past few weeks than we have in years.
I picked Quayd up at 10:30. He was tired, I could tell. Being up at 6 made for a long day. When he came home, we sat up until midnight talking about the book of Enos in the Book of Mormon. Quayd told me all about his job and shared that he was so hungry while he was at work. In the words in the Book of Mormon, Enos said "his soul hungered". Quayd and I talked about how he'd been eyeing the donuts in the bakery while he was at work and planned on having them for his "dinner" during his very late break. We compared how he'd craved, thought about, wished for, been anxious for those donuts. That's how Enos "hungered" for righteousness. It was perfect timing for this conversation. I love those teaching moments and this was definitely one of them.
And summer began an hour ago. I'm expecting that the kids will be asking "When can we put up the pool?" and "Can we open the trailer?!" before the day is over. I'm thinking my answer will be, "Let's get the garden planted and our end of school year dejunking done first." Isn't leverage a lovely parenting tool!?
Here's our first and last day of school pix from this year. Who knows what the format will look like when I hit publish. They are supposed to be side by side, but it doesn't look like that's what's going to happen.
ZJ has come out of her shell more than ever... not that it was a very big shell to begin with. She's spent more hours doing her hair this year than my big girls did in all their years. She's changed the most, physically, in my opinion. She can't wait for braces this summer. I heart this girl!
Grace didn't change as much physically this year. She's tall and thin and beautiful. Someone said that they saw Kelly last week and thought that it was Grace until they saw how she was dressed. They knew it wasn't Grace because Grace dresses so modestly. But, we laughed at that. She looks a lot like my pix at the same age too. She can. NOT. wait for school to begin and to be an official high school sophomore!
Quayd ~ Wow! He's really grown up. I hadn't seen it until looking at these two pix. WOW. The photo of Quayd is from day before yesterday, not the last day of school. Good luck having him home for five minutes to take a photo. He's off "hanging out" with friends all day. His friends are awesome boys, so I'm happy he can be making memories!
Carol and I have been texting through Robert's surgery. The doctor said he did well in the surgery and we'll know more in a few days. I'm waiting, anxiously awaiting any and all news, sitting right by my cellphone all day. Lots of prayers being said today.
Denise called and invited me to lunch. We had a nice lunch on the patio, outside, of Buffalo Wild Wings. I am not a fan of the restaurant because it's so dang noisy and we don't like yelling to have a conversation. But, it was lovely outside. The manager was so sweet. I told him, as he seated us, "Wow! You have such beautiful blue eyes!" He said that I'd made his day and brought us out cheesecake bites. Fried Cheesecake with dipping chocolate and caramel. Oh my.
Doug's out mowing the lawn. The kids are hanging with friends. I'm driving a friend to the airport later today. Life is good. And summer is, oh, so grand!!! Bring it on!
Summer is when laziness finds respectability.
Oh my goodness, thank you for the kind thoughts and prayers for Robert. Your emails and comments touched my heart! I will keep everyone posted!
Doug has worked overtime this week, going into work early, getting up at 1:55, just an hour or two after I got to bed. Weeks like this are hard on us! Last night, the kids all had a youth activity at the temple, so Doug and I actually sat down for dinner alone, so that he could get to bed at 6PM. We always eat dinner together as a family... It was so strange! Quiet, for one. We both liked everything on our plates. We had a conversation that was not diverted to any other topic. Just strange. Did I mention quiet? I can't imagine that every night. I loved it and know that it will eventually be our "norm", but I'll keep enjoying our loud, interrupted, silly conversations for now!
Grace didn't go to school yesterday because her class went to Lagoon Amusement Park. She'd not wanted to go at all and when she mentioned it two weeks ago, I encouraged her to go. When she finally went in to sign up, it was too late. So, she opted to stay home with me for the day instead of watching movies all day in classes that had very few kids in them. We all burst out into laughter at dinner the night before, however, when she blessed the food and said, "And please bless Mom and I to have a very wonderful and brilliant girly day together tomorrow." We said "amen" and I asked, "Was that a hint or what?" We had a fun day... lunch at Firehouse, some card playing that turned into reorganizing the cards and games, some talk and sleeping in late. A fun girly day, I suppose.
Quayd has exciting news... he begins his new job at Lee's as a bagger today. His orientation was Tuesday. He's excited and anxious to be able to get to work! We are talking about money management a lot these days. He's already figured out how much he'll make if he works this many hours for this many weeks until his mission. Go, Quayd! He's been very quiet about his new job, but since he'll be seen there today, it's okay for me to talk about it! What happened to my little boy?! And he's humble too, as you can tell by this photo!
Today is the official last full day of school. We are more than ready for summer to begin! I'm ready for sleeping in til 8 and not having seven alarms between 3:55 and 6:57! I'm ready for playing with the kids and chilling! I'm ready for evenings in the back yard and relaxing with Doug on the swing. I'm not quite ready for the pool. Another few weeks. But, I'm ready, mostly, for school to be over! HAPPINESS!
This morning, however, has been a NIGHTMARE! It's trivial, I realize, compared to some other issues in life, but really.... I went to bed at 1. Doug got up and went to work at 2 AM. At 3:15, GoGo started freaking out, which made me certain that someone was in the house. After a minute of lying there frozen stiff with fear, I realized that he was barking at the chirping smoke alarm that apparently decided to go off every minute and I'd slept through a few chirps. I got up to make sure there were no intruders when I realized this, so I had to get a chair and climb up on the table (which isn't easy on the knees or foot when I'm wide awake, let alone half asleep) and change the battery so that we didn't wake the neighborhood with the chirping or the barking. I was wide awake after that! At6, someone flooded the downstairs bathroom by leaving the sink with the water on and getting distracted. This resulted in a flat iron and a curling wand being left in 2 " of water, plugged in. We'll see if they work when they dry out.
Quayd couldn't find his student ID card and needs it TODAY or else. In searching for that, I decided to just go get his drivers license instead, which I've been waiting until school was out to do. In reading the papers for it, we realized that he needs a birth certificate. I opened the document book for that, which is and has always been and will forever be where important things like that go, only to discover that all three birth certificates are missing. Not in the book. Not in their personal file. NOWHERE, which, mostlikely means that when we went for Social Security cards, the last time they were used, they somehow were misplaced. I'm sick. I'm so proud of this book and my organization of these documents. This is just STRANGE.
The document book is gaurded with our lives, so this is just really NOT something that happens here. Grace wasn't ready for school. Then after being behind, she realized she needed something that we'd have to go to town for. So, she missed the bus and as a result, so did Zeej. And then when I decided that I'd just take them later, Quayd, who was at school early, called with a whole other issue. So, he had to race home. So now, all three are home and missing year book signing. They all seem to be fine with it, but really? WHAT KIND OF A MORNING IS THIS!? Thankfully, it's the end of school. It's no biggie that they are not there watching movies, roaming halls to sign yearbooks and killing time on the last full day.
But, what does matter...I do NOT lose things. Not important things! This is just wrong! I'm very concerned about those birth certificates. It's only 9:17. Grace just said, "If there was ever a day to start over, this would be it, huh, Mom!?" Uh, a big yeppers on that!
SO. We are off to get Quayd's new student ID valid for the past year on the last HOUR of this school year. This is just so insane! But, whatever it takes. Even on flooded bathroom, missed bus last days of school mornings, expensive mornings, broken hair appliance mornings, tearful mornings and lost important valuable document mornings... life is good. Ya might as well laugh, right!?
One last thing... Maya Angelou. I have always adored this marvelous woman. I was in Chicago to attend the LDS Temple and be in the audience of the Oprah Show in the early 90s. While waiting, for a table in Oprah's restaurant, I noticed Ms. Angelou seated at a table alone. She had barely been seated herself. Being the shy person that I am not, I slipped away from my friends and walked over to her to say hello. Surprisingly, she invited me to have a seat. I thanked her for the beautiful poem that she'd written and recited at the Bill Clinton Presidential Inauguration. She asked my name, about me and who I was, my life. I briefly said that I was a wife and mother. I didn't want to be the one talking. I wanted to say, "Could I just sit here while you just share your wealth of wisdom with me for the next few hours?" She was incredibly kind and gentle and endearing. I didn't want to impose, although she offered a genuine welcoming invitation to stay and visit. As I left, she said, "I'm delighted to meet you, Sophia. It was a pleasure." (Just remembering my name was a gift!!) Our table was ready and my friends were all looking at me, still wondering, "Maya who?" At that time, I was the only one who realized what a special few moments I'd just experienced. I will cherish those precious few moments with such a sweet angel for all of my lifetime.
Again, thanks for the continued prayers for Robert and Carol. His surgery is tomorrow. I'm off to buy my son some black pants for his first day on the job. ;)
You are the sum total of everything you've ever seen, heard, eaten, smelled, been told, forgot - it's all there. Everything influences each of us, and because of that I try to make sure that my experiences are positive. ~ Maya Angelou
I've been anxious to share some wonderful news for months. First, please know that I write this with Carol’s permission.
The first and most shocking news I'd ever heard in my life was the day that Carol called me, over thirteen years ago, to tell me that her husband, Jon, had a grade 4 brain tumor. After one courageous, long hard fight, Jon passed away, almost three years later, leaving Carol behind with four children under the age of twelve. Truly, Carol handled his passing with more dignity and grace than anyone I’ve ever met in my life.
So, a few months ago… Carol and I were gabbing away over Diet Cokes, when she said, out of nowhere, “We need to talk.” The first time she ever said those words to me, I was horrified that it was going to be something serious, when in actuality, it was “I’m going to introduce you to the tunes of Garth Brooks and we are going to now love country music.” We still tease about this!
This news, however, was, pretty shocking! Carol proceeded to tell me that her nephew had introduced her to his friend/just released LDS Bishop, who's wife had passed away last year. Carol has never dated once since Jon’s passing, nor planned or wanted to. Ever. Shortly after Jon died, her bishop called her to serve as Relief Society President. (I was not amused because it seemed like such an ominous task for a young single mother, but Carol swears that it was the greatest gift she could have ever received because it gave her the opportunity to serve others, taking her mind off her own grief. As Quayd would say, “She’s awesome like that.”) NEVER, EVER, NEVER once have I heard Carol complain about being a widow. NEVER. She’s amazing! Only a few days after Carol was released from serving three years as RSP, she began teaching Kindergarten, which she’s loved and excelled at for the past six years.
SO. Carol continued, “His name is Robert…” I was thrilled! I cried! I wanted to get up and do a Happy Dance right there! Over the past few months, we’ve loved watching Carol and Robert grow closer and closer until finally, she shared that she and Robert were getting married! HAPPINESS!!!! Doug and I have literally cried every time we think or speak of this awesome news! Robert is amazing and wonderful and “awesome like that” too! They are perfect together!
SO. Two weeks ago, only days after Carol began sharing her wonderful news with everyone, Robert received a call from his doctor… He’d had some tests run the day before… They found a mass on his brain. Now. THIS was the biggest, most unimaginable, shock in my lifetime.
After all these years, and Carol never having a single desire to be married again. Now, when she’s met this most amazing, awesome, wonderful and perfect-for-her-in-every-way man. Now, just weeks before their marriage. They find a mass??!?!!? Never in my lifetime have I been so conflicted with emotions of such joy for their happiness and such whatever it is we are all feeling, because we won’t allow ourselves at this point to think or feel anything but positive!
Great news…Carol and Robert quietly slipped away and were married this past weekend! We are so thrilled for them both. One minute, Doug and I are sobbing tears of joy and happiness and the next, we are on our knees praying for them both!
I share all of these details because Robert will be having surgery this Friday to remove the "mass". We are all praying and pleading that this is something that is manageable, that it’s benign, that it’s treatable and can be something to add to their fairy tale love story that ends with “And they lived happily ever after.” Doug always says, “Expect Miracles!” I’m asking… Please, join in our faithful request and remember Robert and Carol in your prayers. Add their names to your prayer rolls. Any and all good thoughts and prayers are appreciated! Thank you so much, in advance.
Life is good…even when we don’t have a clue what the heck is happening or why!
Where there is hope, there is faith.
Where there is faith, miracles happen.
My hand is feeling much better. Apparently, I dislocated my wrist. At least that's what I was told. One would think that I knew how I did something like that. It's doing better now, but it was a rough few days, swelling up and finally bruising. Go figure?! My body! Who knows!
We had a delightful weekend at the ranch with Alan and Jill and their sons. We ate, watched movies, took rides on the Rhino, swatted lots of mosquitoes outside (worse than any of us every remember) and talked a lot. We never pulled out one single game, which is unusual for us when we are together. But, we talked a lot. A lot. Good times relaxing and some good hard work, as well! A few weekend highlights in pictures...
Sunset the first night after a drive up in a great rainstorm that included a lot of lightning. Beautiful!
Grace caught a cold from our next door neighbors and spent the first 24 hours sleeping or reading in bed. Thankfully, by Saturday, she was up and baking cookies for us all! But. It did land her the top bunk, which is a prize to the kids... their own personal space!
This little ground squirrel, who, apparently, lives in the woodpile kept us entertained all weekend! ZJ kept the ground squirrels fed. They like popcorn.
I, who do not like being unplugged, volunteered to be the designated phone caller whenever we needed to touch base with anyone over the weekend. This requires taking a little drive up to the summit of the road to the cabin, until we can see China Hat off (a mountain) in the distance. That's the closest place to receiving cell service.
After I took this beautiful sunset photo, I had the shocker of my weekend! I drove to the top and pulled off into a farmers access to what will in a few months be "amber waves of grain". I parked here to make my phone calls, send emails, whatever needs to be done. If I see anyone coming up the road from either direction, which is usually about one vehicle an hour, I make sure that they see I am on my phone and not "stranded" at the top of the mountain alone. A truck was coming up the hill as I was taking pix of the beautiful scenery. I looked up and got a bare bottom "full moon" hanging out the back window of the pick-up! Immediately, the 70's song, And they call him "the Streak" came into my head! I haven't been that surprised in a lonnnnng time! No pictures of that one. Hmmm!
This photo depicts one of those "ah-ha" mommy moments! Quayd, Alec and Adam had been out on the Rhino, doing their own thing. We went for a drive in the Expedition and came upon them. They were being safe, respecting the land, just enjoying the view too. But, look at my manchild. He's all grown up!
Here's my favorite guy!
Here's a spectacular view of the ranch. I love how the river winds and bends all through it. The cabin and the loft are the buildings on the far right.
Years ago, we all read a book called Charlie's Monument. I don't remember the story except that everytime someone reached the top of a mountain, they added a rock. Doug's mom started her own monument. So, of course, we had to add a rock or two this trip. Alan's creativity is always fun... the wind blows non-stop at the top, so we wonder how long it will stand like this.
Alan, always the joker, counted before I took several pictures, "One. Two. SLAP!" Seriously, we've never experienced such a mosquito attack!
I did get a few good ones too!
Doug, my granolaman, can tell you every edible wild plant, anywhere we go. He mentioned that he'd noticed wild anise the day before while hiking. We drove straight to it and he and Alan started "nibbling" on it. Alan and Doug, both, know their wild plants. I, rarely, will try any of these natural beauties, always saying that someone needs to be the designated driver to the hospital. They were all going on so much about this anise that I decided to try it too. I bit into the leaf a few times just to get the taste on my tongue. It was heavenly! So, I bit part of the leaf off and started chewing it. Apparently, I am allergic to it because my throat started closing, I started coughing, it was bad. Since I discovered that I have a few allergies a few years ago when I had hives non-stop for eight months (mostly fresh mango and fresh pineapple), I carry Benadryl. I was glad to have it! I coughed and wheezed for the next hour until it settled down a bit and the remainder of the weekend, it lingered. I'll pass on any new nature treats from now on. But, I admit...it was so good! Ironically, ZJ had not felt well the night before and we wondered if it was from one of the "weeds" or a cactus that she'd sampled, as well. Everyone else tried them with no reactions though. (Notice, Doug has pulled his hoodie over his hat to keep the "skeeters" off his neck. They were BAD!)
Another adventure... Doug drove us to the fishing pond, which I've not been to in years. It's one of the most serene places at the ranch. Alan and Doug have many memories from their youth at this fishing pond. And surprisingly, this was the least mosquito ridden place outside all weekend long.
But, Doug still managed to have them follow him. He must be pretty sweet because they love him!
I'm always so grateful that Doug and Quayd have such a special father/son relationship. I tell Quayd that I'm also always so grateful that he is willing to let me take his picture! Actually, he's kind of a ham! I love it!
We didn't just play the whole weekend. There was more work to be done inside the cabin. It's much warmer now than last time when it snowed and sleeted on us the whole day. They guys were baking in those suits. Quayd decided to take his shirt off under his. They worked hard and made some more progress emptying the cabin, filling another dumpster with carpet, cabinets and beds/mattresses. These men were raised by a very conservative mother, so tossing everything has been difficult for them. "It's a perfectly good ____." (except for the mold that's totally covering it.) It's hard to toss everything, perfectly good or not. But, then again, flood damage has made the decision easier. Toss it. Period.
Can you say "mushrooms"? I am beginning to wonder which is worse... a flood or a fire.
After working all morning, the guys showered, Jill and I prepared a lunch of leftover chicken divan, lasagna, fajitas and all of the other good foods we had enjoyed all weekend. We ate and loaded up to go. Once everything was loaded, we still sat there in the shade (swatting mosquitoes) and not wanting to leave. The kids kept saying, "Mom! We don't have to go. We have enough food to last another week!" We never want to leave once we are there. But, Doug had to be at work at 3aM today, so needed to see that he was home, unloaded and in bed by 6PM. (waaaah.)
On the way home, we all stopped by the cemetery to visit Doug's dad's grave. Doug and Alan have very similar feelings about the grave. "Dad's not there." Their dad lives on in them and their children every day. They don't feel a strong need to visit the cemetery. For me, I love going to the cemetery. I love cemeteries even when I don't know who's buried there. They are fascinating. But. It reminded me of how grateful I am to know that there is more beyond this life and of Heavenly Father's loving Plan of Salvation. I do love the gospel of Jesus Christ! What a blessing in our lives!
It was a wonderful weekend. The time with Alan and Jill is priceless. We just love every second with them. The kids are always in heaven at the ranch. It's literally our heaven on earth. I say it all the time.
Back to work... last week of school. More cabin stuff to deal with from this end. Bills to be paid. Laundry to be washed. Lots of it. Work to be done. A lawnmower to be repaired. Yagottaluvit. But, family... oh that's the best part! Life is good!
Our days are happier when we give people a bit of our heart
rather than a piece of our mind.
Yesterday, I mentioned my hand hurting like a sprained wrist. By nighttime, I could barely move my fingers without it throbbing up past my elbow. By morning, it's all swollen and puffy and weird looking. No bruises, no bitemarks, nothing but swollen and throbbing with each heart beat. Who knows!? I'll be going to the doctor if it doesn't stop, but I'm trying the ice and elevate method for a couple of days first. However, one handed blogging is no fun. So... Have a wonderful Memorial Day Weekend! We're planning on it, for sure! Life is good.
Happiest thought of the day! We've got lilacs! It's that time of the year and is there anything that smells so divine!? I spell Spring L-I-L-A-C-S!
It's been such an odd week. First, Typepad had issues. That was just plain strange to not be able to blog! And then, just minutes ago, I got a bunch of comments. I'd not seen any for days...also a TypePad issue apparently. Then, I was crazy busy. Then, we've had a few challenges that have been quite consuming. So, my time to sit down at the computer has been very limited. Then, I did something to my right hand and it's been difficult to type at all. And now, here it is, Thursday.
So, briefly, a week update...
Doug enjoyed his few days in Salt Lake City at the Melaleuca Convention. He stayed with Wayne and Vicki, which made me jealous, because he enjoyed his evening visits with them as much or more than the convention, which he loves! I'm glad that he got a little time to do his own thing, though. Doug rarely does anything for himself! Quayd spent the weekend with Jason's family. They had a great time together, watching Katie run in a half marathon and seeing Spiderman 2 again. The girls and I spent the weekend together, doing pedicures, watching movies, going to CostaVida and "chillin". It was a busy weekend, indeed.
This week, I've spent a lot of time doing some research on the cabin situation. I'll spare the details, but I'm learning so much about water and mold damage, about insurance, about people! Very interesting. It's the end of the school year, so we've spent a lot of time doing "end of school" stuff, taking lots more of our time. One more week! Oh, how I love summer!
Speaking of summer... our lawnmower is having issues. Doug had finished mowing the front yard the first time this season. He pushed it to the backyard, made one loop and it died. I paid to have the lawn mowed, last night, because we had guests on their way and I couldn't stand it after only ten days! There was only time for the front yard, before our company was arriving, so the front looks great! But, here's my backyard, which has yet to be mowed this season. It's never been this long. I'm embarrassed! Doug says his priority tonight is to get the mower running or find a new one or we'll have our young friend return to complete the back tonight. In the meantime, I hope that Go-Go doesn't get lost in it today!
I have other rambling thoughts but my hand is throbbing. BRING ON SUMMER!!! Our holiday weekend officially begins at 3:30 today! I'm dying to turn that calendar page to June already. HAPPINESS!!!
Life is good!
Treat people as if they were what they ought to be
and you help them become what they are capable of becoming.