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..................