Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Once it's over, it's over.........

Once Christmas Day has come and gone, I'm just done with holidays and winter. January and February are not my favorite months to say the least. However, Paul and I are celebrating our 30th anniversary and my 50th (ouch!) birthday in those two months. So we decided to do it up right and go to one of our favorite spots in the world. We are headed to Kehei in Maui for two weeks in January. I will be laying in the sun, reading books, driving around in the convertible, and enjoying Paul's uninterrupted time! Aloha!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Count Your Blessings Instead of Sheep........

I have really been blessed in the past month and have truly experienced the 'tender mercies of the Lord'. I have spent much time in gratitude over those mercies. I wish I could share with you all of the wonders of this past month. It's been amazing. I'm so grateful that He is aware of me. I'm so grateful that He knows me and worries over me. I'm grateful to be surrounded by such good people, starting with my family. My ward family is so kind and generous with their gifts and talents and I so appreciate them. People are so willing to lend a hand and be there for you when you need them the most. I have many blessings and as I go to bed tonight I'll be counting......

Happy 1st Birthday Calvin Jay!

I can hardly believe an entire year has passed by since 'old blue eyes' came into this world. He came early and it was such a wonderful Christmas present to our entire family. He has the bluest eyes, is so quick to smile, and does love to give a hug to his Grandma! We love you Cal and wish we could be with you and Gray and your parents to celebrate!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

My 'Rents!

I just have to say that I may have the cutest and best parents around! My dad just turned 80 last May and mom turns 80 this May! I just wanted to give them a shout out and tell them how much I love and appreciate them. They have been temple workers for ever stinkin' ever until just recently. However, my dad maintains his calling as a sealer for the temple. He has performed the marriage of my 4 oldest children in the Mt. Timpanogas, Salt Lake City, Bountiful, and Mesa temples. He will complete my children with the final sealing of Allison to Nicolas on Dec. 27th in the Medford temple. How blessed I feel that not only do I have worthy children that can all be at the temple for Alli's wedding but that my parents are alive and well and also worthy to be there with them. To have 'grandpa' seal them to their spouses has really been a unique and beautiful thing. So thanks mom and dad, for being shining examples to my kids and to me! Can't wait to get you here next week for the festivities!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Christmas decor!

I saw this idea on HGTV. They had asked people to send in their best Christmas decorating ideas and this was one of their top 25 ideas. The picture doesn't do it justice. I bought a fake wreath and attached it to the bottom of my light fixture. Then I took fake garland and wound it from above the lights to the top. It took about 27 feet. Then I tied silver ribbon on it and hung some silver balls. It's just a stunning look! Enjoy!

I Love To See The Temple, I'm Going There Someday!

What a great day we had at the temple with Alli. She was so prepared and ready to take the commitment it requires. I was so proud of her. She was so supported by both sides of the family so thank you to all who could join us. It made for a special day. It was great to have all but one of our grandbabies there as well! (even tho it was just outside!) It gives an eternal perspective like no other!

Congratulations Alli. You are a wonderful daughter!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

I'm Sick........

I have avoided being sick for a little over a month. I have just been putting it off for various reasons and I guess I just don't have a good enough one anymore. However, I think I still have some good reasons but nobody seems to care. Here is a list of my symptoms...........
1. I'm achy.
2. My nose is completely stuffed up.
3. I sound like a man. I could actually hit 1 1/2 octaves below middle C today at church.
4. My throat feels like garbage.
5. I cannot sing and can barely speak.
6. I have a roaring headache. This has been with me for about two weeks now. Why? I'm not sure but I certainly wish it would go away. You know how I just love pills.
7. It hurts behind my eyes.
8. I'm so so tired.
9. I'm coughing up a lung.
10. Let's not go there.........

So I'm looking for some sympathy. I have a week like no other and being sick does not help this situation at all! Here is my week:
1. I have rehearsal all day tomorrow.
2. Rehearsals Tuesday
3. Rehearsals Wednesday, pick up Summer Wednesday in Medford, and have a show Wednesday night
4. Thursday brings yet more rehearsals both day and night. One of these I am supposed to be singing........right.......
5. Friday is set up for the ward Christmas party, show in the afternoon, party that night, rehearsals after the party.
6. Saturday......goodness, I don't think I have anything booked! Anyone want to book that day? I'm open........
7. Sunday.....ward Christmas program that I'm in charge of.

So, is there any sympathy out there? Oh yeah, there's the wedding too! Now that should be the icing on the cake to get me some sympathy!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Freak out!

So tonight I totally freaked out. I was summoned via phone call to come and see Alli's new apartment - no, wait - not Alli's new apartment - Alli and Nic's! Holy smokes! My daughter - my baby is getting married in about two weeks and that means she'll be living with a man! I've been so fine with it all and I'm still fine but it really hit me like a ton of bricks tonight. I will say their place is brand stinkin' new and really great. I brought her a roll of toilet paper as a house warming gift! I figure as they move in they may need to use the facilities. So all of my kids will be married in about two weeks. How does this happen? How do I get to be almost 50? I just really feel grateful for every day and every breath these days! So ms. Alli, welcome to the marriage club. This will be the best club you will EVER join! And thanks for the total freakout!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

I have so much to be thankful for and I thought that perhaps I would list a few things that seem to float to the top of my list:
1. My husband. He is such a good man. I feel privileged to be at his side.
2. My children. They have grown into these wonderful adults and I know how blessed I am to have such loving relationships with each one of them
3. My in-law children. It's like they are my kids! I love each one of them and they are perfect partners with my children.
4. My grandkids. I had no idea the kind of fierce love I would have for my grandkids. They have added such a wonderful layer in my life.
5. My parents and siblings and their families. I come from such a good home with terrific parents. I will always say that I grew up like a princess. My sister is just the best and you would all be privileged to know her. I am soooo grateful my brother is alive and well!
6. The gospel of Jesus Christ. I have such a firm testimony of the truthfulness of the Gospel. I feel so overwhelmed by the blessing it is in my life.
7. Music. Music defines so much of who I am. I am grateful for the appreciation I have of it and for the gifts I have to participate in it. Thanks mom and dad!
8. Where I live. Not the house (tho I love my house!) but the mountains, the abundance of trees, the constant blue skies, the seasons we enjoy, the small town living where we still wave to those people who pass us on our road and in any neighborhood. I love the wildlife that we see everyday here. Bald eagles, hawks, deer, etc. It's just a beautiful way of living.
9. The opportunity to serve. I love what I do in the church. I love that I get to see my institute kids every week and have meaningful gospel discussions. I love my sunday school kids. They are so full of energy and questions.
10. America. Yes, I am grateful to live in America because for all of it's flaws and hard times we are in, it's still the greatest country to live in. I am grateful for all those who have fought, who are fighting, and who will fight to maintain the American way of living.

I hope that we all take a moment to pause and think about the things we are grateful for this weekend. Happy Thanksgiving!

Friday, November 21, 2008

The finished product!

So this gives an idea of what our tree looks like finished. It feels a bit pretentious to me! I'm much more of a homespun, needles on the floor, ornaments from 1985 kind of gal so this seems a bit out of the park. However, for Alli's reception it will be stunning. I wish you were all here to see it in person. The picture just doesn't do it justice. Click on it to see a bit more detail!

Alli and I stayed up late one night to get it all decorated. It was quite the ordeal. The ladder was cumbersome but we managed to move it around and around. I should have done an ornament count! We did use 50 yards of metallic netting and it wasn't enough!

Enjoy! Oh......and Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Enough Turkey Day!

Okay I tried to keep up the turkey day template thru Thanksgiving but I just couldn't do it! I don't know what it is about Christmas that I just love. It makes me feel happy. It makes me think of others. I don't know - I just LOVE Christmas. This is a picture of our undecorated tree in our living room. SWEET!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Merry Christmas.........

I know that I put a turkey day template up but FYI - Our 1st Christmas tree is up with more to follow............Yay for Christmas!

Friday, November 14, 2008

I've succombed!

I have been pestered long enough for 'the end' story of the poor pack rat who lived at 1050 apogee way. So if you don't want to be grossed out, please don't read on. (Now I know that you will all read on because you are all just curious and sick enough!)

Let's back up to many weeks ago. We had a propane leak in our house. We could smell it like no other. But it was weird because it wasn't by our appliances or fireplace. We called the gas man to come up at 11 at night to do a pressure check. Bill #1 - $$$$$$$$$ He found nothing.

A few days later it was so strong I thought we all may die and I didn't think we should even stay in the house. I called the gas man again. He came up yet again and did yet another pressure test. Bill #2 - $$$$$$$$ He found nothing. He did mention that perhaps we should check our septic tank. We've only been in our house for not even two years and it's only Paul and I! How in the world could we fill a septic field!

So we called the septic people. Bill #3 - $$$$$$$$ He found nothing. He did mention that perhaps we should bring up a plumber and see what he could find.

We called the plumber. Two of them came up. Bill #4 - $$$$$$$$$ They went all over the house smelling. They put their noses by the drains, by the toilets, by every place imaginable. They could find nothing...................

Then the heat kicked on. It hadn't really been on at all before this. They said, "Hmmmm, the smell seems to be stronger when the heat kicks on." And then Paul had a light bulb come on over his head. We had set rat poison in our crawl space. Yes indeed, the smell we were smelling was a dead rat! Oh so disgusting and so gross. I'm totally creeped out just by remembering it. This was on a Thursday. I had 8 missionaries coming to my house Friday night and a bridal shower on Saturday morning. Our house reeked!

We we had to figure out where it was. So the plumbers opened up one of our heat vents and pulled out gobs of nesting material. Oh my gosh I'm so embarrassed writing this 'outloud'! They opened up another vent - you guessed it - nesting material.

So we called a vent guy to come up with his vacumn and try to suck out the dead rat in my heating vents. Bill #5 $$$$$$$$$$ Didn't have equipment to work in the vents. So the dead rat will now forever be in my heating vent and because we have soft vents, it will embed into it and eventually make a hole and we will have to tear down walls to find it and replace the vents!

I hate pack rats. It's official. I never want to see or for sure smell another one. We did figure out how it got into the crawl space and that's forever fixed.

Here are the lessons we learned that just may come in handy to some of you:

1. Always close the door to the crawl space completely. I had not done this as I was packing out wedding tubs for a wedding I was doing.

2. Pay as many people as much as you have to to figure out what the nasty smell is in your house.

3. Use the product Odor Killer (only available on line and found by others stories on the internet about how they got rid of the smells of dead pack rats in their houses. Paul had typed in google something along the lines of the kind of venting tubes we have and something about smells. He found nothing. I typed in 'Dead pack rats in my heating vents' and it brought up a world of information! Guess this is more common than I thought. There are apparently a lot of rednecks like us who have to figure out things to do with dead animal smells.)

4. Never ever put out rat poison! Only use traps. This would have saved us a world of trouble. I may have suggested this to Paul but I would never give him a bad time about it as I was the one who left the little door open a crack..........On the other hand he should have been helping me get the buckets out and he would have made sure the door was closed!

5. Rats can get thru the smallest of spaces.

6. The smell does eventually go away and we learned the best thing to do was to put a dryer sheet in each vent and it helped immensely.

7. We still love living on the mountain and have chalked this up to a weird story in our family history!

So there is the story. Please don't tell anyone as we may never see another visitor again...........

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


Paul and I just returned from the glorious city of New York! It was fantastic to say the least. However, we did not take one single picture! Bad doobies! I thought of Shauna a number of times and we gave a shoutout to the building she'll be working in.

We never took a cab (except from the airport). We walked and walked and walked. And how we wish our familia would have been with us. We have done all of the touristy things so we just hung in NYC and enjoyed being a daily part of the hub bub! Here are some of the things I love (and tolerated) about NYC!

1. Driving in a cab from the airport. Scary - fast - like a roller coaster ride. Paul laughs and I close my eyes!
2. The Fantastiks! What a great show. A very small theater like the Linkville. We loved it so much. I would recommend this show to all. It reminded me of Dad (Jay) being in this show in Logan when we first moved back.
3. FAO Shwartz - well, we may have spent our children's inheritance. Thank goodness they mail! What an experience. I would have loved to have had Carter and Gray there running from one thing to the next!
4. Central Park. It was the perfect day to spend there. We walked for 6 hours that day. It was brisk. The colors were beautiful. The sky was blue. The leaves were trickling onto the ground. Absolutely stunning.
5. Radio City Music Hall Rockette Christmas Spectacular. That is the most incredible theater I have ever been in. And what a show! There was snowing, flying, fireworks, legs, a live nativity with camels and even a JDonk! We loved it so much that we went back for a second show! And if you catch Paul at the right time he will show you his favorite step they did. He actually did this IN THE THEATER AS WE WERE WALKING OUT!
6. Bagels.........why can't KTown figure out how they do this!
7. 4.00 cans of diet coke.
8. Macy's! Need we say more. 10 glorious stories of shopping and eating. We did both - a lot!
9. Really sore feet - we never got back in a cab.
10. Hairspray. This is a show never to be forgotten or as Tom Monson says: Always to be remembered - never to be forgotten! It was opening night for Harry Feinstein. He is taking over the role until the show closes on Jan. 4th. He was by far the ugliest 'woman' I have ever seen. And that voice! He certainly got a bit naughty and that part wasn't so good. A fantastic show on so many levels!
11. Diane Keaton. I had gone back to FAO for a bit more shopping while Paul had a meeting. He met me there and we had a little over an hour til show time so we just wanted to sit and chat. We went across the street to The Plaza and found a couple of comfy chairs about 6 feet in front of the elevators. We were chatting and the elevator doors opened and I thought to myself 'My that lady looks like Diane Keaton' and turned back to Paul and then I heard the voice. Sure enough, Diane Keaton was standing in front of us in the ugliest dress I may have ever seen. But she pulled it off. Tiny woman that Diane............. We did not see McCalley Culkin..............tehe...........
12. Cheap purses and scarves! Love them.........
13. Dale and Thomas' popcorn. This is by far the best popcorn I have ever eaten. Yum. Right at Time Square so you can always get some coming and going!
14. SEeing Angel Moroni hanging out in Manhattan! What a beautiful site!
15. Virgin Record store in Time Square. Could there be a more fantastic store for music? You could find anything and everything you could ever listen to. I think I got 6 cd's. Yes, mostly Christmas! However, Paul could not find the Tennessee Ernie Ford Christmas cd. He was very saddened by this. He love his rendition of Little Drummer Boy.
16. Madison Square Garden. We didn't go to the game on Sunday but I love seeing it. It's NBA baby!
17. Spending time alone with Paul - without work and church obligations. It was so fantastic and he is just so fun to be with. One word for you Paul - Oneders..........gig............
18. Paul getting a towncar ride back to the airport this morning.
19. Leaving NYC. After 5 days there I was ready for no smoking, no crowds, no surface street noise, no sirens, no people asking for money, no people stepping in front of me, traffic, etc. I have never been so happy to be back on my mountain with the moon shining over the lake and the sound of..............of..........oh wait, it's quiet! Ahhhh.............

Saturday, November 1, 2008

The End!

Well, the rat story has come full circle. I won't go into the gory details because you would be tooooooo grossed out by the true story. However, we know the packrat is dead. How we know this we will keep to's a mortifying story and just disgusting......and it may keep you from visiting. All is well on top of the mountain yet again!

On another note, I had to laugh to myself as I went to bed last night. It was Halloween of course. All of you were with your kids, grandkids and enjoying the festivities. Ours was the most different and most wonderful Halloween ever. We had all 8 missionaries up to the house for our traditional chilli and scones dinner. They had a district meeting after that and then we, the missionaries - Paul and I - Alli and Nic - had a testimony meeting. It was such a beautiful thing to watch 8 19-20 year olds sharing their feelings about the Savior and His impact on their lives. We all got a chance to share our feelings as well. And as I went to bed I thought to myself - 'Only in the true church would you find eight young men wearing white shirts and ties and talking about the Savior of the world on Halloween night." Smile..................

Monday, October 20, 2008

Don't forget the small stuff!

I was so excited to come home from church and bake up a pumpkin pie for Paul and Al and Nic. It looked absolutely beautiful...................but man did it taste bad! Everyone was very polite but it was just bad. Forward to about an hour after the ordeal of gagging down bad pie - I remembered I had forgotten to put 3/4 c. sugar into it! A small amount relatively speaking but a good lesson learned for life. Don't forget the small stuff! Those things add up with the other good things we do to make a most tasty dessert!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Critters...........the final chapter.........we hope.........

Well, we have not found our critter but I thought you may want to take a look. This picture makes them look almost cute and cuddly...........not when they are scratching at my walls at night! However, we haven't heard it for many nights and we are presuming the poison worked. The poison causes them to want to get out for air so we are hoping Paul finds it under the house when he goes there tomorrow. One can only hope! I promise to put up some pics of our fantastic weekend at the pumpkin patch in St. Paul, OR. Did I mention I love love love my grandkiddies?

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Critters...............part 3

There is evidence that the 'thing' has eaten some of the poison. However, Paul bought a true rat trap. Not a baby mouse trap. This thing is HUGE! It will definitely snap the head off of anything that gets near it..........maybe tonight.............(imagine a haunting ghost sound............) If we catch it I may just take a picture of it to gross all of my readers out. And I know you'll be watching for it now because we just can't seem to NOT look at the bizarre, gross, and generally creepy things of the world!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Critters.................part 2......

So Paul set 5 traps - mouse traps - under the crawl space where we suspected the rodents may be. He checked last night and all 5 traps had been tripped and the peanut butter licked clean off! So whatever 'it' is, is too big for the mouse traps.........eeeeeeewwwwwwwwww........So now we know where it is - we put out poison. Now we'll have delirious rats...............great............ However, on a good note, Paul is just thrilled with himself and his self esteem is on a high! You know, keeping his family safe from the big, bad things of the world! You just gotta love it.........

Friday, October 10, 2008


When you live on the top of a mountain with nobody close by, you can expect critters. I would love to put up a night cam on the property and just see what is lurking close by! (I think anyways...) So here is the critter watch on my mountain.....

1. Deer coming and going thru the property. Sometimes it's only two and sometimes there are 20. They are beautiful and I wish they would just live at my house all of the time.

2. Resident animals - Moki, Chaska, Toots, Rio, Bear, and Moose. There is nothing quite like sitting up in bed every morning, looking out the windows and seeing my horses! There is nothing quite like letting Moki and Chaska out every morning - they are so genuinely happy to say good morning. Toots - we'll just leave her out of the beautiful morning...............

3. Hawks flying and hovering over the house - LOVE IT!

4. Yesterday Alli and I were driving up the mountain and there were two bald eagles just soaring overhead. We stopped and watched them for quite some time. It never ever gets old to see a bald eagle in the wild. For those of you who don't know, Klamath Falls is one of the biggest nesting grounds for bald eagles. We see them all of the time. Two soaring overhead was just picture perfect.

5. Cougars and Bobcats. I have not seen the cougar or the bobcats this year. That is probably a good thing. I did have a run in with a bobcat a few years ago. He walked across the road about 25 feet in front of me as I was returning from the mailbox. AMAZING!

6. Coyotes - we have a few that come thru our yard on occasion. They are a little frightening looking sometimes but mostly they are just jogging thru the back of the property minding their own business.

7. Jack rabbits. These are not your ordinary rabbits. They are the size of small horses - I swear it! They are so fun to watch chasing and hopping. And those ears...........

8. Squirrels - we have some resident squirrels that live in the rocks. They run out on occasion and take a peek at the world - steal some oats from the horses - and run back to their rocks. Too cute.

9. Magpies - not such a fan. They eat the dog food and it drives Moki crazy - crazy enough to bark at them but not crazy enough to chase them. This would take way too much energy.

10. Bluejays. There is nothing quite as beautiful as a wooded jay. So big and blue.

11. Mice. These are definitely on the bad list of critters. If you recall I had quite the time with some of them last year. I had a bin with a door on it full of horse oats. I went out one day to open it up and about 25 mice came pouring out. It was totally the grossest thing ever. However, there was one that had just overeaten and he was hanging on the door - swinging with the door. He was too fat to do much of anything. He just looked at me like 'Have some pitty.' I know that feeeling after Thanksgiving dinner so I just let him hang. We've had a few in the house but Paul is the expert trapper. You would think he was hunting big game!

12. Pack rats/wood rats - Now we had a cat that loved to bring his treasures to us each morning. (This cat has since been the bottom of the food chain for a coyote!) He would bring them to us in many different parts. There were inside parts laid out for us sometimes. And sometimes it was just the head. Lovely cat - he made us proud! However, we have one (we think) in our walls as of a few days ago. Paul went a-hunting for it under the house last night but can't quite figure out where it has gotten in. I know this sounds so horrible to all of you but it's just part of living on a mountain. He will be caught in a few days and this will bring great pleasure to Paul.

I love mountain living. I love that I have fresh air every morning. I love my critters - all of them. I love watching the storms come across the lake. And most importantly - I love the human critters that live with me!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Blog stalking........

Not too long ago, someone in my familia (Jayne) told me how inspired she was by one of Dyans (and kind of an acquaintance of Dani's) friends. Her name is Susan. I have never met her and only have seen a few pics of her on her blog. Well at any rate, she is 25 and has stage 4 liver cancer and it's not a good prognosis - medically speaking. However, we can never underestimate the miracles of God now can we............She is newly married and I can't even begin to imagine dealing with this the first year of marriage. Paul and I dealt with it 8 years ago for the first time and that was 22 years into marriage. It was hard. The second go round was 3 years ago - 27 years into marriage. It was hard.

She is a strong young lady and has lots of people praying for her. However, I would just love it if you would all remember Justin and Susan in your prayers tonight. I know that Heavenly Father does listen to our pleadings and it will give her strength. You can feel it when a concerted effort is made in your behalf. I never really understood that until this last round of cancer with Paul. It was a tangible feeling that others were praying over you and pleading to the Lord to lessen Paul's suffering. I don't know how to explain it other than we could literally feel it. I don't know the Lord's plan for Susan and Justin but I do know that there will be lessons learned in their lives that they can get no other way. Don't we all look back at hard times and feel a sense of gratitude that the Lord allows us to feel joy afterwards? That He allows us to really understand and learn from those times. Only a loving Father would do this for us.

Matthew 11:28 -30

Wednesday, October 1, 2008


I just LOVE this picture of my brother Dave! I've never quite seen him so at peace with life. Welcome back Dave!
This is Jayne and I attempting to take a self portrait! Take 1!

Take 2! Sisters....sisters....never were there such devoted sisters..........(add the tune....)

The Originals!

This is the original family that started it all in the Jensen, Sargent, and Stewart families! I think we've all aged quite nicely - like a good stinky cheese I hear! We had soooooo much fun at our 80th birthday celebration for mom and dad - yes mom, you aren't 80 yet! But you had better make it to 80 since we made such a big deal about it! I really love my parents and my siblings. I haven't been the best at keeping in touch with any of them over the years. I should have done a better job at that. However, it was so great to just pick back up with them all and know that we just all love one another. I know that may sound corny but I really mean it. They are just great people with great families - this includes you, mom and dad! I hope that my children never let an opportunity go by to stay in touch with their sibs. I hope that they never let too much time go by without a call or a visit. I hope that they let their sibs know that they love them and their kids!
I added the ski lift picture because they just make me laugh when I look at them. The first one is of mom, dad, and dave riding up. It was a beautiful day at Sundance. The sky was blue, the leaves were turning, the weather was spot on. The ride down which happened only moments later as the minute we reached the top a giant black cloud appeared and we were hurried down the mountain.
It poured the whole way down! As soon as we got to the bottom it quit raining and we enjoyed our drive up in the mountains to see the colors. It was an eventful drive as Dave drove off the road and got the back tire caught in a ditch - well it really wasn't his fault. We saw a flock, gaggle, herd - whatever you call them - of wild turkeys just off the road. Who ever sees one wild turkey nonetheless an entire flock, gaggle, herd of them! It was amazing and well worth the trip off of the road!

Thanks Jayne and Dave for making this time together so incredibly wonderful. I enjoyed you both and loved having Janet along to keep us in check. Happy 80th Mom and Dad!

Welcome to our world!

Welcome to our world Reece Noelle Andrus! Proud parents: Summer and Joshua Andrus! Reece weighed in at 7lbs. 10oz. on September 25th! She shares a birthday with her Uncle Sam who was born in 1985 and with her great-grandma on her daddy's side of the family! She is perfect! She has a load of blonde hair and now that she has her tummy full she is just a happy baby. I was so thrilled to be there during the events before and after! What a great home she has been born into. Her parents are just thrilled and all of those mommy/daddy instincts have kicked in! I think Summer still can't believe that she has a baby and how much she loves her! Joshua jsut can't believe there could be a prettier baby! Thanks Summer and Josh for a new grand daughter and for letting me be there to witness this perfect miracle!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Happy Birthday!

Happy Birthday to my boy Sam. He turned 23 today. And Happy Birthday to my new grand daughter born today at 1:55pm - 7 lbs. 10 oz 2o" long. No name yet but maybe by tomorrow. Baby girl Andrus belongs to my oldest daughter Summer and her husband Joshua. It is their first baby. I was SOOOO privileged to be invited to be a part of this day. I got to be at the hospital all day while Summer labored. She did fantastic and was a real trooper. I don't think I know anyone who wanted a baby more than Summer. Baby girl has a head of the blondest hair ever. I can't download pics from this computer but some will follow if I ever get home.

I have now been away from home for almost 4 weeks. Today has made me homesick. I'm ready to go home. I am so blessed that I have a husband who supports me going away for 4 weeks. Paul is the one who booked my week long trip to AZ - telling me that I needed to see my parents and sister. He's the one who booked me flying up to Utah to go to my nephews wedding and then a two day long party for my parents 80th birthdays. (I know mom, you aren't 80 until May!) I have had an amazing reunion with my parents and my brother and sister. I think that maybe I forgot how much I love my family! They are such good people and always so supportive of me and my quirkiness. Love them, please..........

I have also realized how much I have missed ms. Alli. She and I have become the best of friends this summer and I am really going to miss having her at home with me. However, I am soooo happy for her and Nic and will happily 'let' her go..............mostly anyways........

I have been brought to remembrance of what incredible kids I have. They are all such good parents to their children. They love their spouses. I love their spouses. I wish I could turn back the clock and be a better parent to them and go back even further and explore what some of my dreams were when I was younger. I just am amazed at the people they have grown up to be.

I also realize what a lucky lady I am to have found a person like Paul. I continue to ride his coattails thru life and can't figure out why he loves me so much - but he does. It's always such a surprise to me. He could snag anyone in the world and yet somehow he continues to want me. Thank you Paul for loving me, cherishing me, blessing my life, and allowing me to just be me - warts and all.........

Well, congratulations Summer and Joshua on the birth of baby girl. She is sooo beautiful and so wonderful already. It was so fun to watch you both just fuss over her and realize just how perfect she is. I loved being there to watch it all unfold.

And Sammy - Happy 23rd birthday! You aren't forgotten on this day - but you have been knocked down the ladder a notch. Somehow grandbabies just take over the top of the list spots!

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Summertime! And the livin' is easy!

So anyone who would ever read this would have already seen these pics. These were taken in Sunriver at our annual family fun at Sunriver. I think Paul and I have certainly aged but I wouldn't go back to what I looked like 20 years ago. I think that has something to do with the hairdo of that time - the 80's.........ah, we all remember them well!

I do think our grandbabies may be the cutest things alive! Paul has Ben and Sharons youngest, Cal and Dani and Jeffersons oldest, Carter. I have ms. Andi (Dani and Jeffersons) and Grayson (Ben and Sharons oldest) We sure do love them and wish they lived in our basement frankly!

So for all of you have 'suggested', 'browbeat', 'pushed', etc me into writing a new post - there you have it. If I ever find my camera - yes, I lost it yet again - I will post with some different pics! And if anyone has any ideas about the said lost camera, please let me know. I just know someone took it (with the dvd's we've lost, the cd's we've lost, etc........)

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Happy Birthday America!

Carter thinking he's big enough to drive the quad.......He was happy as a clam.

This is why I love Paul...........

This picture says it all....................

Sunday, June 22, 2008

A follow-up........

So I posted a note about Moki and his wonderful treasures about a week ago. I actually ran over the deer leg two days ago and snapped it in half. Totally disgusting............anyways, Moki loved having it a bit more manageable. He has been chewing, chomping, and crunching the begeebies out of the upper thigh bone. The hoof disappeared...............or so I thought......I came home from a drive tonight and sure enough, there was Moki on the front porch with the hoof and shin bone from our poor deer friend. When will the madness end..........You just gotta love Moki!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

A sinfully yummy dessert...........

Peanut Butter Pie

1 1/3 graham cracker crumbs
1/3 c. sugar
1 cube melted butter

Mix together and press into a 10" pie pan. Bake @350 for 10 minutes. Let cool

I don't have a 10" spring form pan so I used a regular pie tin and used almost all of the filling. Had some left over...........

12 oz cream cheese - softened
1 1/2 c. peanut butter
1 1/2 c. sugar
1 c. heavy whipping cream

Mix together all but cream. Whip cream til stiff peak forms. fold into peanut butter mix. Put into crust.
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 c. heavy whipping cream
2 oz. bittersweet chocolate (broken into pieces)
1/2 t. butter
1 t. vanilla

Mix sugar and cream in a sauce pan and bring it to a boil. Stir frequently. Reduce heat and simmer for apx. 6 min. With a gas stove it take about a minute less.

Remove from heat. Add chocolate, butter, and vanilla. Stir together and pour carefully over peanut butter mix. Refrigerate 4 hours.


I think you could do this in a 8X8 pan as well and cut into squares. An entire piece of pie is a lot because it's so rich..........however, I did manage to eat my entire piece!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Moki and his treasures............

So I went riding a few days ago and Moki (and the cat weirdly enough) came along with me. Moki ducked under a tree and and grabbed this giant stick and then I didn't see him for awhile until I was on my way home. I could see him on the road way in front of me and I thought to myself that it was a very weird shaped stick. I brought Rio home and got her eating some hay and decided to go see Moki's stick. Imagine my horror when I found an entire deer leg - hoof and hair and all - on my front porch! I couldn't touch it - it was very a....fresh shall we say. So I got Alli. She put on Paul's shoe and tried to kick it off the porch but Moki immediately put it in his mouth and started swinging it around and slimed Alli's leg and foot. So when Paul got home he threw it way out in the bushes on the property. Fast forward to Sunday - Alli was gone - Paul was gone - and I went out last night to feed the horses and imagine my surprise when what was on the front porch yet again? You guessed it - the deer leg had reappeared. Thank you Moki for being a mighty hunter and sharing your finds with us. You make us proud!

Sunday, June 8, 2008

We're back............

We got back from LA - actually Marina del Ray - last night. We sure had a great time. What did we do? Absolutely nothing but relax. We drove around in the mustang convertible we rented, went to the beach and just watched the ocean, hmmmmm......that's about it..........We did go and see Wicked at the Pantages theater. I am with my dad - it may be my all time favorite musical. It's just spectacular - great story - incredible characters - and the singing.........D.I.VINE! I also talked Paul's ear off about the future wedding plans of our last daughter!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I will be in wedding mode for the next 6 months. Please feel free to advise, give opinions, share ideas.........I'm on the hunt.............And on a really great note - Happy Birthday Gray!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

A closeup view...........

The material is this really soft, fine cotton - almost batiste feeling with a little pattern in it. It is just yummy.....................

The smile says it all!

Does this say happy or what?

I have a love/hate relationship with sewing........

This I have a love relationship with this! I just finished up this blessing gown for 'Juicer' new little grand daughter to be............Sorry Dani - didn't think of it when you had Andi - I owe you one! I think it turned out pretty great. The armholes were terribly difficult as they are so tiny!!!!!!!! Can't wait to see my grand daughter in it!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

It never gets old................

It just never gets old looking off my deck. All the bushes are in full bloom with little white flowers - my new crab apple tree is bright pink............all in all it's just lovely up here.

On another note, Alli's facebook status has changed to 'in a relationship'. Kind of freaked me out for a minute but only for a minute. Nic is a really nice guy and I guess Alli is old enough to date, right? Maybe we should hold a family council and take a vote on that...........I thought she was 14! tehe al...............

Saturday, May 17, 2008

I hate these things......

I do hate these things - I love reading what others write about themselves but honestly, I'm just not that interesting. However, I did tell Alli I would do it. Don't get any crazy thoughts - I will not ever be doing another one!

A- Attached or Single? Attached for good - 29 years - yeah baby!

B- Best Friend: See #1

C-Cake or Pie: Neither really but I would always pick pie - no fruity stuff tho -

D-Day: Everyday is Saturday for me (except Sunday of course!)

E- Essential Item: the sun

F- Favorite Color: Brown - is there any color that's more gloious - I think not.

G-Gummy Bears or Worms: ick on both counts

H-Home town: Klamath Falls, Oregon

I- Indulgences: My life

J- January or July?: July - sun.......

K-Kids: yep - 5 originals - 4 add-ons

M- Marriage Date: Jan. 17th 1979

N- Number of Siblings: 1 bro 1 sis

O- Oranges or Apples: There is absolutely nothing better than a Mutzu apple. Grown for baking purposes makes them so tart!

P- Phobias or Fears: Being put in a vat of mayonaise..........

Q- Quote: "The most important work you will ever do will never be done."

R- Reason To Smile: my familia

S- Season: Summer for pool time and horse riding - Fall because of the colors and smells but then there's the Christmas season and would like that all year long! I guess I only really despise Spring and that's because there is no such thing.

T- Tag Three: I would never subject someone to these things!

U- Unknown Fact About Me: I'm really pretty quiet in a crowd.

V- Vegetarian or Oppressor of Animal: MEAT!

W- Worst Habit: nail biting tho I'm 3 weeks off of it!

X-Rays or Ultrasounds: Ultrasound

Y-Your favorite food: Watermelon ranks among the best -

Z: Zodiac Sign: Aquarius

You are welcome Alli!

Friday, May 16, 2008

I am so proud of myself!

I just changed my template without Alli's help. Now I know this may not be a big deal for some of you but for me it was a 'Christmas Miracle'! Now I'm going out to the pool..........................

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

A sad day..........

So on Mothers Day I was driving home from Salem after a glorious week and a glorious day when I got a call from my parents. They informed me that my cousin Shauna, who is my age, lost her son to a motorcycle accident on Saturday night. He was 20. I thought to myself what a different Mother's Day I had in comparison to my first cousin. I was celebrating Ben's new life post graduation from law school and Shauna was having to bear the grief of planning her son's funeral. I will never understand in this life why God takes some and leaves others. I do know that He has a plan for all of us. I also know that I am grateful for His healing hand in our lives...........

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Mothers Day.......

It's not a secret in our family - and many others I know - that Mother's Day is a difficult day for me. Don't ask why. I just don't really care for it. I have complained about it for years. My poor kids probably think I don't like being a mom. I don't like the talks in church about mothers. I don't like the flowers they give me. I don't like this sense that everyone is walking on eggshells on Mother's Day - and they are! Because I have made them wonder how they should behave on Mother's Day to make me happy! Rotten mom, aren't I?

Let me share a few thoughts I've had this week. I love being a mom. I find there hasn't been anything that compares to the thrills of motherhood. I love that I was blessed to stay home with them. Thanks to their Dad! I love that they seem to still kind of like me and want to hang around me! I love that they ask for advice. I love them. It's just that pure and simple. And as they tell me they love me and thank me for being a great mom, I just look at them like 'Who are you talking about?' It's me who should be thanking them. I look at the kind of people they have become and I can't believe they still want to claim me as theirs! I feel sooooo priveleged to witness their lives. I feel so blessed to be a part of their lives. I feel so incredibly humbled that they love me back. Me...........all of me.......the warts....and the good stuff too! So while I haven't said it very eloquently, I hope that they know the love I have for each one of them. I do stand in awe at each one of them. Every day is Mother's Day for me! I love you Summer, Ben, Dani, Sam, and Alli..............and I promise next year to not complain about Mother's Day! (Which will be quite easy because I have already invited my mom to go away somewhere on the worst day of the year with me!)

Amazing Week!

I have had the most amazing week and weekend! First, I got to watch over and love on all my grandbabies this week. Paul, Alli, and I were in Portland and watched Carter and Andi for 4 days while their parents were at a wedding in sunny AZ. It was so fun to really be around them for every moment of every day. They are amazing little people to say the least. By the time their parents were home, Andi was crawling and Carter was shaving...............well, that last one wasn't true but the first one was! We played, went to the zoo, met up with Grayson and Calvin and their parents Ben and Sharon for a night on the town...........we just had a great time. I feel very blessed to have the grandchildren I do and can't wait for the next two to get here!

Today was an amazing day as a mother. I got to watch Benjamin graduate with honors from Willamette Law School! I love the pomp and circumstance. I love the regalness of it all. I loved that they had a bagpipe and drum corp accompanying the graduates in and out of ceremony. I love the robes they wear. I love the tams and tassles. It was truly awesome. I loved that Sharons parents made the effort to fly up for this special occasion. I love that my grandbabies were there and well behaved. Congratulations Ben on this truly incredible day and accomplishment! It was a wonderful day for me as your mom................

Is it Christmas yet?

Why? you may ask do I wonder if it's Christmas yet............

I was driving back home from Salem tonight......going across the Willamette Pass.........a fresh dusting of snow.........Christmas music playing (Bebo Norman is awesome!).......and I found myself wishing it was October so Christmas would just be around the corner..........Merry Christmas everyone!

Monday, May 5, 2008

Two handsome men................

Monday Monday......................

Thanks to ms. Alli for helping me figure out the backgrounds for our site!
The Sunriver trip is on and the fabulous house is booked. If you want to take a lookie-lou, check out Sunriver Resort house vacation rentals. Follow this:, accomodations, vacation rentals, type in Oregon for the street name,click on Oregon Loop #15. It is the nicest and largest house we've ever stayed at. Sorry Ben and Jefferson. 5 br 5 ba 3300 sq. ft. Pool table. Hot tub. Living room and family room. We are going to be very comfortable. Everyone get's their own room except Alli of course. Poor Alli! But she's good with it all. Her turn will be coming! We are arriving on Tuesday, July 15th and check out Sunday, July 20th! Hope you can all make it. Anyone is welcome to come here the weekend before as well! Loves to all!

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Back from a visit.....

So I returned this afternoon from a few days up in Salem. Stayed with Ben and Sharon. It was such fun. Their boys are just adorable. Cal wins the 'easiest to get to smile' contest. He just chortles and looks around.....YUMMY! Gray does love his grandma. Dani and her kids came down last night. She and Sharon and the kids were already at the park when I arrived from Portland (I played for some choirs at State Choir). They were all the way on the other side. When Sharon and Dani saw me they pointed and told the boys that Grandma was here. When they saw me they both just started out in a dead run! This is the life of incredible joy. I love those boys so much. And ms. Andi - well, she's a flirt and she seems to think I'm pretty great too! She has changed so much. I took my camera and when I went to get it out it was my IPOD. Boy am I dumb sometimes.........

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

It's snowing..........

That's it..........that's all I wanted to's all I could write without throwing in a naughty, it's snowing.........'nuff said......arghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

Monday, April 28, 2008

The strangest people..........

So I have a story to tell you all........I only do because you all know Jason Appah. He's a member of our bishopric now. So a number of weeks ago, he left Sunday School for a few minutes and on his way back in there was a member of our ward and someone else sitting on the couch talking. Now this guys name is Bro. so and so. He's older - probably 60-ish. (This is the man who was in a missionary class with me and said the church is just like having sex................) Jason said, "Hey, I'm going into class. Would you like to come in?" Bro. so and so looked at him and said rather loudly, "You need to learn to respect your Elders BOY! You need to not be telling me what to do BOY" and it went on for quite a few mintues. Jason handled it well and just invited them in again and left. The next week in church, Bro. so and so came up to him and said "How are you feeling this past week? Are you feeling okay? Any pains?" Jason thought it was odd but said "Nope, I feel great, why?" Bro. so and so answered, "I made a voodoo doll of you and have been sticking pins in it all week!" and went on in that vein for a few minutes. Every week he asks him if the pain is getting worse! Now remember, Jason is black! Can you even imagine someone actually saying these things? Unbelievable..................Good thing our testimonies aren't based on the people of the church......

Sunday, April 27, 2008

The View.............never gets old..............

Any takers? It just never gets old to look off of my deck.....ahhh.......

Grandpa just couldn't help himself!

Grandpa (aka Paul) was walking thru the store on Saturday and he saw this! He said, "Can't you just see our grandbabies playing in this? They would love it. I think we just need it!" And the next thing you know, they are loading the box into the back of the 'scalade'. We (meaning Paul, and perhaps Ben....) will have to put this together soon. We have just the place for it so we can watch the kids playing from the kitchen window. Grandpa even started making rock steps from the pool deck up to the side of the house where it will be. That Grandpa loves his grandkids!

The Animal Farm

These two are inseparable! Moki and Toots!

This is my new girl Rio (the horse formerly known as Rosie). She is a 20 year old retired thoroughbred racing horse. I have the papers that shows the races she won AND made money on. She raced as a three year old and then was used mostly as a brood mare. She is such an incredible horse and I am loving riding her on the mountain!

another view!

Soup and swap......

Our RS had a soup and swap. In our RS we only have about 8 - 10 people that show up. It was a really fun night. Delicious soup! People just brought stuff they were sending off to the Goodwill. This was in the pile going to the dump! Can you believe that? So I snatched it up after I made sure nobody else wanted it. I brought it home to show Paul my treasure. He said, "Andi will just love playing with that!" I reminded him that Gray and Carter would love it too. He actually rolled his eyes!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

It's almost May!!!!!

I just got back from a week in Utah. Such fun to spend time with Summer and Joshua, Sam and Nikki, and Alli! Thanks to all of you for a wonderful week. And the best news (which anyone who would ever read this already knows) is that we are adding a girl grandbaby to our clan! Summer and Josh are having a girl. I got to go to the ultrasound and it was just amazing. I've done this with 3 of my other grandbabies and it never gets old. Thanks for letting me be a part of that Summer and Joshua! And now we are in the hold mode until we know what Sam and Nikki are having. I just love being a mom and a grandma............

Alli is home for the summer as well. Could my life get any better?

Monday, April 14, 2008

Excessive yawning.................

So I can't stop yawning................really's been just horrible. I'm not tired and it goes on all day long. I'm wondering if it's a side effect of the new meds I'm on...........all i know is that my jaw is sore........yawn.......

Horsing around..............

So since my camera has been found I will try to get some pictures up on our site!

Saturday, we went on our first ride of the year. It was incredible! Both horses were so wonderful and responsive. Just no problems at all. It is going to be a great summer of riding.

I took another lesson today. My trainer put me on Flash with a halter and lunge line put out about 8 feet. I was bareback and only had a tuft of mane to hold onto. She was teaching me balance and helping me to find my seat on a horse. She trotted her in both directions and I had to balance by holding onto the mane with one hand and had to put my other arm up in the air - forward, backwards, up, and to the side. It was really hard at first but I got pretty good at being seated deep into the horse. It was really fun. I do love riding bareback...............

Sunday, April 6, 2008

The great white whale............

So Moki got a shave on saturday. He looks like a great white whale! He is the funniest, weirdest looking animal on the planet! His body is white and fat (sounds vaguely familiar to some of us!) and his head is tiny and gold (also sounds vaguely familiar to some of us!) The good news - he lost 10 lbs somehow! All that sleeping on the front porch just excersised that 10 lbs off. He's down to a svelte 129! Congratulations Moki!

On another note, I thought conference was absolutely fantastic. It was really wonderful to watch the mantle lay upon Pres. Monsons shoulders. I had just taught the 'mantle' story of Elijah and Elisha from the Old Testament so it had extra meaning to me I think. We are truly blessed to be living in the time of a true prophet................

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Sleeping............or the lack thereof..........

So I went to the doctor this morning - my yearly - and told him I just can't sleep. Never have been able to. So he decided to put me on an anti-anxiety instead of a sleeping pill. No, I'm not depressed or even anxious. He just feels that they work a bit better than a sleeping pill. His experience in his practice is that sleeping pills like Ambien, Lunesta, tend to quit working on women after a short amount of time being on them. So as I have had this very experience with sleeping pills, I decided to go the route of the anti-anxiety pills and try them for two weeks. This is my first night on them. It's 2:24am and I'm on the computer.............

Tuesday, April 1, 2008


So this morning I had to get my tooth fixed - a crown. I really hate the dentists - even for a cleaning. So I took my Ipod and cranked up the Bach Goldberg Variations and tried to relax. As I was sitting there with a numb mouth (and ear and part of my eye!) I thought how far dentistry had come and how grateful I felt for all those people who were the guinea pigs early on that allow me relative comfort at the dentist. I think the worst part of this morning was the shot! When I was a kid, I would never allow them to give me any shots. I had every filling done without being numb. Stoopid! So all in all, I only sweated a little bit on my upper lip - this seems to be where I show nervousness, and I felt mostly relaxed and now my tooth feels great! Yea for good dentists!

Monday, March 31, 2008

shots and worming..........

I think we have truly forayed into the horse world. We gave shots and de-wormed the horses Saturday! They all did well except Bear...........he was naughty as always! We finally had to put a twitch on him to get him to take the meds! Sigh........

On a good note, I put a bit on Rosie today - she just hung her head for me and took it! - and I walked her all over the property - just led her around to get comfortable with me at her side. It was a really pleasant afternoon!

Well, I did lose my camera. It never even made it from Judes car to the's just vanished..........a pentax.........bad doobie suzanne.........

I think spring may arrive this week..........mid 50's all week........of course it was 14 degrees outside this morning when I fed the horses but who's keeping track of that.................brrrrrrrrrr................

Monday, March 24, 2008

Palm Springs or bust!

Well, I am finally home. I feel like I've been gone for weeks on end.........oh wait, I have!

Palm Springs was wonderful. We had quite the schedule worked out - walked a mile to the store for breakfast.........sat and talked at an outside table while we ate........walked a mile back..........sat at the pool for 6 in the convertible and drove around for awhile...........ate dinner and caught a was a pretty great week. I was ready to come home however. I missed that husband of mine......imagine that! :)

We picked up the new horse.........Rosarita..........from O'Brien Oregon. She is a great old mare and I'm anxious to start getting on her. I did find out about a new mixture you make up to help any skin ailments - she has a few 'rain rot' spots on her back - you mix half and half Listerine and baby oil! I wonder what it would work on for human skin...........I'll keep you posted!

I'm also looking at changing her name. She's been called Rosie but I thought something southwestern/western would fit better. Any suggestions would be welcome!

I'll get to putting up some pictures someday............I can't find my camera or my cord..........big surprise eh?

Sunday, March 9, 2008


So it's 7:14 and it's still light outside. Can I just say 'Hallelujah' for daylight savings? I know that every year when it changes I am so happy. I need the light and it makes me realize that I can manage it until the snow goes away (we still have a foot) and that summer is coming........even if it's slowly! I would just like my driveway to be clear! That's not too much to ask I don't think.........

Had a wonderful week with all of the grandkids and their moms. Thanks for coming. It's just so great to have the house full of noise and messes! They are just the best grandkids ever and I love them to death!

Happy Daylight Savings Day!

Friday, January 11, 2008

Christmas and new baby!

Click to play Christmas+
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