This last Friday night tragedy struck. This is a house of one of our ward members and friends. From our front porch. The blessing of the fire is... no one was home... no one was hurt.
Their immediate needs have been met by the ward/neighborhood and Christmas has been replaced by the Stake. Insurance is helping with on going basic needs. There is an account set up at America First called "Cowley Family Charitable Fund" if you'd like to donate for future needs of this family.
Are you having a jolly week? I sure hope so. Considering tomorrow is the end of the world. But then again, maybe it won't end. So I hope your week is jolly so you can keep going after tomorrow with the jolliness. Or something.
I know it's been a tough week and it's kept me from blogging. I don't want to move into funny and stuff too soon, but I also don't want to be sad. Here is where I am... We live in perilous times. No laws or confiscations or medications or anything else will stop bad guys from doing bad things. Or from getting guns. Satan has got a hold on the hearts of the children of men and he will not let go or even loosen his grasp until Christ comes. I hope you are praying, as we are, that He will come soon.
On to the happy. Because happy is good. Happy is Joy.
Last week our cub scouts went to the Veteran's home in Ogden to pass out ornaments. It was so fun to watch our cute cubs and their sibling go into the residents' rooms and give them an ornament. Or 15. I took pictures as they passed them out then took a picture of the group. Sam wouldn't stand with the group so I snagged this one.
Sam wrote this special piece in school. I love the last line.
AAAAGGGHHHHHH!!! Isaac just texted me from school and said his science fair project is going on to the district!!!!! AAAAAAGHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!
We got our tree up last Saturday night. Sunday was the family party and since it was a Christmas party, I figured it would be nice to have a tree up. Plus, it's Christmas next week. Notice there are only like 2 decorations on it. Those are Ruthie and Sam's ornaments they just made in school and gave to me this week. The lights are part of the tree. Luckily. And there are really presents under it too, much to our kids' delight!
And here is the play room minus the toys and games and clock and other such things. Also minus the chairs and tables for people to eat dinner Sunday. The basement, for which I have NO pictures, mostly because I don't go down there since Sunday because it was a disaster and there were games destroyed and toys EVERYWHERE!, is awesome. Well, messy. But still awesome. And it was a big hit. It was so hot and crowded in my house that it was a relief that it wasn't more crowded and hot because most of the children and teenagers were downstairs.
So now I'm ready for Christmas and am so grateful to celebrate with our home full of safety, peace, love, completeness and JOY.
All 7th graders take a class called CTE. I only know the C stands for Careers. T might be for Technology?? E may be for something that starts with E. Just a guess on my part. Anyhoo, Isaac's first quarter in CTE was all about wood and big tools. He built a truss, a cart of some sort and other things that earned him an easy A. This quarter is filled with clothing care, child care, family stuff, cooking. And sewing. Isaac was so excited about the sewing machine. It's a machine and he does well with machines. So I put him to work to cinch in his new church pants. He got in there and sat down and asked if my machine was computerized. ?? Um, no. Mine is the cheapest of the cheap. Story of my life. I should show you my carpet. So he threaded the needle and practiced a straight stitch on some extra fabric. Then I put his pants in. He had asked me to mark a line where he should sew. Then he left. I ended up sewing his pants. But he did a fantastic job threading and getting the bobbin into place. Do you know how funny it is to have your 12 year old son talk freely about bobbins? Funny I tell ya.
Sam was taking a bath and had asked Ruthie if he could use some of her bubble bath. Sure, she said. Then he called us in for a picture. Gives a new meaning to the term bubble boy. Sam has recently made a list of all the Godzilla movies ever made. I do believe he knows every single one. There are 2 that are rated PG-13, so he has to wait a bit to see those. He has big plans for his 13th birthday.
Sunday was the annual Abbie's Christmas Cookie Party. We got to see our cousins who have been in North Dakota for a bit. They're back and we are so happy they are. Ruthie made beautiful cookies and even brought them home. The boys left theirs on the table. The other day Ruthie said, "We get our cuteness from mom and our tallness from dad. I wasn't born from mom's tummy, but I am still tall." So there you go. I just so happy the cuteness came from me. I'm glad it wasn't that they had gotten hairy toes from me. Cuteness and tallness and so many other things that all 3 of my kiddos inherited from us.
We still don't have our Christmas tree up. Still in storage. Daniel is home today so we can finish with the primer on the basement walls and ceilings. I won't have time to paint colors on the walls till after this weekend. The tree will go up Saturday and I'm putting a marbles circle in one bedroom and hopscotch runs in another. Then the main area will have a rug and tables with toys and games. The kids will be banished to the basement for the evening. Oh, did I tell you we are hosting Daniel's family Christmas party this Sunday? Did I tell you that it should be around 55 people? That's why the basement is being done quickly. Though it's not finished, it's good enough to have people down there. Pictures of the basement will be forthcoming. But, just a warning, white primer on walls is boring.
Well, we couldn't figure out the problem with posting pictures to my blog. So we had to move into Flickr and work through that. I have finally figured out how to get everything done using Flickr. So I have pictures. For some reason I have been unable to just write-blog due to the lack of pictures.
Here we all are with my 99 year old grandma. We were so excited she got to come to Utah to see us all. She will be 100 next April and we hope to have a big party for her!
Isaac is taking Art at school. He loves to draw so we figured it would be a good fit. He is awesome at it. His last assignment was a city drawing. It was technical. Here he is holding it. He is next to he picture of my brother Aaron. Aaron drew like this. In Isaac's drawing, he added a little homage to his uncle. He put a crack in the sidewalk with a flower growing out of it. It's something my brother drew and titled "Beauty Amidst Bleakness". (I need to put a close up picture on sometime!) At parent teacher conferences yesterday, Isaac's art teacher was talking to another student before us and telling his dad that this assignment was a tough one and his B- was excellent. Then we get up there and Isaac had 200/200 on it. An A. His teacher was so impressed with his work.
Last week was our annual Cub Scout Pinewood Derby. Officially it is our family's last one. Not officially, I will be doing Pinewood Derbys as a leader for a while yet. Sam's car came in 6th overall. He had fun, though, which is most important. Sam earned his Webelos badge a couple months ago (I'm so far behind) and has a compass point to boot. He has been working on more badges to earn more compass points. yay Sam. (hi Laurie)
Isaac worked on his 7th grade Science Project recently. I can honestly say I took no part in the creation and putting together of this project. I will be earning no grade this year. Isaac chose to use the hop switch on his air soft gun to shoot at 10, 15, 20 and 25 feet. He had a great hypothesis and the results were very different than he expected. And that's as far as I go. Because I didn't do it, I didn't help, I didn't put the data in. All I did was buy the board and glue where he told me to glue. I will, however, much to his dislike, be judging the fair this year. Only I can't judge his. But it is awesome! And this is the basement before the insulation and drywall.
So here is a recent lesson I've learned. First, something I already know. I have a condition called Aquaphobia. It's a fear of water and it's very real. So I used that fear as a reason to never have my children learn to swim. Sick, I know. But you would think that I would have had them learn very early so that they wouldn't drown. I mean, I wasn't going to jump in and save them. But then I would always have Daniel with them in the water. So it really wasn't a problem. But then my dear Isaac was working on his 1st Class rank in Scouts. And one of the requirements is to pass the BSA swim test. Now Isaac can swim pretty well enough as a self taught swimmer. But the BSA swim test was more complex. So I did it. I signed them up for swim lessons.
Here is Ruthie (in purple). She is a great little swimmer and has no fear. Luckily. She began in level 2 and has advanced to level 3. Ruthie has recently been sick. She finally went back to school yesterday. Whew!
Sam is a little more timid in the water, but he is an awesome swimmer too. He was in level 2 with Ruthie and advanced to level 3. Here he is doing the back stroke.
Isaac loves this. He was in level 3 and I was told level 3 is the most difficult level to pass. So I just reasoned that the next set of classes we do they will all be in level 3 together. No such luck. Isaac passed and is going into level 4. As soon as he can do the 75 yards without tiring so much, we'll do the BSA swim test. Cool!
And then there's the basement. We had the dry wall guys come in all day Saturday to put it all up. They are coming each evening and doing tape and mud. It's a long process and my house stinks. By the family Christmas Party on the 16th, we hope to have primer on all the walls, the ceiling painted, light fixtures put up and maybe the walls you see here painted. But most likely the walls won't be painted. I borrowed a large piece of carpet from my brother and that will help the floor. Then we'll put some tables, chairs, games, toys and stuff down there. In 2 of the bedrooms I am going to use chalk to make hopscotch runs and marbles rings. Then the kids will have something fun to do and the carpet will go down over it all later.
So there you have it. There is probably so much more I need to catch up on, but I can't remember right now. And now that I can get pictures back up, I hope to be blogging more. After all, this will be a volume to add to my blog book collection!
I just tried to get pictures onto my blog so you can see what we've been up to. But I apparently don't have any more storage space. Or something. I don't know what it means. I just can't pull pictures up. So you get a wordy update for now.
I am feeling better. I have been in really bad shape because of my thyroid. I couldn't walk last week and was in bed most of each day. Saturday I felt best, but by Sunday I was in pain again. Today I'm taking it slow. But I've gotta get stuff done, so it's a busy slow.
We got to visit with my 99 year old grandma on Saturday night. She flew in with my aunt so she could go to her new great great grandson's baby blessing. So many generations! It was so nice to see her and visit with her for a bit.
Thanksgiving was nice. I was feeling crappy, but still ate and chatted and had a good time. My nephew James is home finally. We was due in October but decided to come in July. He is a healthy 9 pounds now and getting along just fine. He looks just like his sister Rebecca, who passed away after her short 3 month visit to earth 3 years ago.
The day before Thanksgiving I was watching the news and they were showing the Salt Lake airport and talking to people about flying on the busiest travel day of the year. Outta nowhere Andrea, who turns out to be the only one left in our China travel group, was saying she is going to China to adopt her daughter!! YAY! She's in China now.
Our electrical stuff in the basement is done until we have walls. Tonight Daniel's brother and his boys are coming to help Daniel and our boys put up insulation. A message has been sent to our neighborhood drywall expert and we hope to have walls up soon. I hope to have paint on the walls by December 14. Then the electrician comes back to put all the fixtures in so we have light. Then during Christmas break and beyond we'll get doors and molding and carpet and other such things to make our basement bright. Then we start moving boys down. Woohoo.
That's it for now. I really need some pictures put on. I'll get Daniel to work with it tonight to see what the problem is. Until then, I'm gonna get on with my slow moving busy day.
Are you tired, rundown, listless? Do you pop out at parties? Are you unpoopular?
And if you don't know where that Lucy Vitameatavegamin quote comes from..
Are ya livin' in a cave??
On a more serious note, I have been feeling all of those things. Okay, most of them. I don't pop out at parties. At least not that I know of. And unpoopular? C'mon. Not me!
I have been dragging for months. Months I tell ya. I just figured it was because school began and I was beginning each day super duper earlier than I like to and then all the PTA stuff and running and running and running until I would just collapse at the end of the day. And then if I had time in the middle of the day, I'd collapse and be gone. Gone!
So I went to my usual 3 month appointment with my Diabetes doctor, well, okay, she's really a nurse practitioner, but she takes good care of me and my Diabetes. And we're doing fine thanks. She always feels my throat and around my thyroid. I have to swallow when she does. Every 6 months I have blood drawn and they do yearly checks of various and sundry things. Like my heart, kidneys, thyroid, cholesterol, etc. I really don't know what else. But I always look good. Um, my blood work always looks good. No complaints from the phlebotomists.
But this last time I got the call back from the doctors office and the gal said that my thyroid levels were low and to come back in 4 weeks to have it checked again. "Is that why I'm so tired?" I asked. "Uh, yeah" she answered back. So I put it on my calendar. 4 weeks isn't until next week. But I have been getting worse and worse as each day passes. So yesterday I called and talked to her assistant and told her I am lambasted. My legs and back ache and my joints hurt and I think I'm sporting a slightly enlarged thyroid. Can you say goiter? She said to come in today and get blood work done and there is a chance they'd have results back by the end of the day. This is their last day in the office this week. So I went in this morning and got lots of vials of blood drawn and just heard back from the assistant.
I have hypothyroidism. I could'a told you that. So I start synthroid tomorrow morning and go back at the first of the year to check it again.
No more listlessness here. No more popping out at parties, or anywhere else! I hope to be back on my feet and getting things done soon. Like clean the house. And make dinner. My kids are starving. Yay for modern medicine!
Last night I went to the bathroom, took care of business, changed into jammies, began to climb into bed, sneezed and peed my pants. I was caught off guard by the sneeze you see. And I had just gone to the bathroom. You would think I had an empty bladder. And normally I would cross my legs anyway when I sneeze so I don't, you know, pee my pants. But I didn't have a chance. So I ran to the bathroom with Daniel unsure if I was laughing or crying. I was laughing hysterically. So we discussed the sureness of needing adult diapers in our future and for a while Daniel burst out laughing every time he looked at me. I changed my clothes and went back to the bathroom to make sure it wouldn't happen again. So if you were thinking your day was off and you were looking for something uplifting to make you feel good... There ya go!
Come on over to my house. When you come to my front steps you'll see this...
No, not the rotting jack o lantern at the bottom. Isaac will get rid of it after school today.
When the boys were spray painting their Halloween costumes on the grass, Sam got the can and sprayed "Hi" on the sidewalk. I started to get after him then thought better of it. It's a permanent welcome mat.
So come on over to my house if you need a great "Hi".
a good book to read to your kids? Heck! Need a good book to read period?? Here it is..
The Land of Stories
The Wishing Spell
By Chris Colfer
You know, the guy from Glee.
This is the book I'm reading right now to my kids. Yes!! I read to my kids every night when they go to bed. It's a tradition we've maintained over many years. I don't know what we'll do when the boys move to the basement. This is a wonderful story about twins Alex and Conner, who are in 6th grade and just lost their father a year before. One of their favorite things about their dad was the stories he told. They get the story book from their grandma and the book.... I'll stop there. You need to read it. It is fun, exciting and keeps you interested!! The only problem is that that chapters are very long. So I usually split a chapter over two or even three nights, depending on the length. But totally worth the wait each night.
This morning Marsha, the eyebrow lady, was here. To do eyebrows. Awesome. She is from Australia and this is her first opportunity to vote since she's been in the states. She said over and over, "Have you voted? When are you voting?" to everyone who came. She was so excited for the opportunity to vote and wanted to make sure we were all planning to do it.
is the long awaited day. Ruthie turns 9! Saturday we had a small party with a few friends. The theme was Hawaiian. I did the hula. We had lots of fun!
Today we have a white cake with chocolate icing and.. wait for it.. raspberry filling. Cake Boss. Rememba?
We also have had goat club tonight so we offered to bring treats for the special day. I did little mini sized cakes with powdered sugar on top. Goat club has since been canceled due to sick people. So they will be the PTA meeting treat tomorrow. Come and enjoy some!
Happy birthday beautiful girl. We love you and are so so so happy you belong to us.
when I said I killed the last fly? Um. Never mind. I wish a cold snap would come and just stay. It's November for pete's sake. And I'm not even gonna capitalize that pete. I still don't know who he is or why we are concerned for his sake.
So if November is here, must mean October is gone. And I need to catch up. On Halloween. How was yours? Ours was fun. We had 2 jack o lantern pizzas from Papa Murph's.
We do homemade costumes. Have you seen the prices of costumes? We have done store bought in the past, but homemade and ingenuity are far more fun. Ruthie was a Gypsy. She didn't have her crystal ball for the picture, but she carried it around with her. She had loads of fun and loads of candy.
Sam was not committing to anything costume-wise. He was just gonna go as a person. When he got home from school Wednesday he said he wanted to be a pumpkin head. So we cut open the biggest pumpkin we had and cleaned it out and put it on his noggin. He almost fell over 'cause it was so heavy. So rather than be spine squashed and not able to stand, he copied his brother's idea. He found a box and used the rest of the spray paint and we cut out the eyes and he became a creeper. It's a Mine Craft thing. You can tell who plays Mine Craft as kids yell out "It's a creeper!" with much enthusiasm.
Isaac is the original creeper of the night. He has been planning the outfit for weeks. Weeks I tell ya. He stole the box while we were loading up the storage unit. Now we have to go get another one. The green spray paint is what had me in Walmart earlier in the week when I met the sweet swearing old lady. Isaac met up with some friends and apparently got some good houses. Apparently full size candy bars means you're rich. Guess where he'll hang out next year? He got home late and had a haul.
So now November is officially here and that means.... It's Ruthie's month. This gal will be 9 on Monday and so tonight we went to Jade Buffet for dinner. Tomorrow she will have some friends over for a little party and Monday, the big day, we will take treats to Goat Club. Isn't that where you want to spend your birthday? If there's cake? Why not?
Ruthie ate some octopus and my boys are creeps. I mean creepers. I'm gonna go kill some more flies. For the last time.
I love this time of year. I hate time changes. I love the colors on the mountains. I hate when it gets almost summer warm after I've gotten snow boots out. I love crisp mornings. I hate runny noses. I love the smell of spiced pumpkin. I hate the smell of spiced vanilla. I love extra chocolate choices in the seasonal section of the grocery store. I hate blood and gore and the living dead.
I really do love this time of year. But as we have been coming up to Halloween we have been having some discussions here at our house. A couple of weeks ago we went to Lagoon. It was our last hurrah with our passes. It was also Frightmares. Last year we went in the evening and I hated it! I hated the characters coming up and chasing and scaring. So this year we went earlier in the day. We rode rides and had fun and then headed to that side of the park. The characters weren't as scary and it was light outside. We got into one of the lines for a haunted house. Daniel said it was an old movie theme. Love it. We were thinking Alfred Hitchcock. We stood in line for a while. As we got closer to the building we could see the posters on the walls. They were R-rated gore and living dead movies. So we looked at the pamphlet again and read slower this time. There was no old in the description. They were gory, bloody, night of the living dead movies. We got out of line and told the kids that the movies they would depict were R-rated and so we would be leaving. We were all relieved.
Years ago I was taking an Institute class while in college. Yep, I went to college! I hope it doesn't surprise you. Anyway, my Institute teacher was wonderful. As we got closer to Halloween, he spoke of an experience he had had several years earlier. His wife had just had a baby boy. He passed away due to some difficulties. As his wife recovered from pregnancy, delivery and loss, he went to the local mall in Provo to get white clothing for his son. As he walked toward the mall there were movie posters up. And they were graphic. The one that caught his attention was of a grave with a bloody arm coming up out of the ground. It stung him. He had just lost his baby boy and he and his family were looking forward with joy and hope to the Morning of the First Resurrection. And that poster, as well as the others around it, was mocking that great gift.
I walked away from my class that day with a renewed appreciation for the Resurrection. Many years later, when my brother Aaron passed away, the Resurrection became our reality. We have taught our children over these last 10 years that the Morning of the First Resurrection is going to be the best day ever. Jesus will come and we will see Aaron, Opah, Grandma Shelba, Lyndsay and Rebecca again. It will be a glorious day and we want to be there.
But when we see these depictions of gore and blood and living dead, zombie like creatures, we become desensitized to what our bodies are. Temples of God. Death is not scary or ugly or gory. When Jesus went to Lazurus to raise him from the dead, Lazurus did not rise from his tomb bloody and gross and scary. He shined bright with the Light of Christ. That is how death should be thought of. Bright. Lovely. Reuniting with so many loved ones.
While discussing Halloween and haunted houses and gore for Family Home Evening last week, we decided as a family that we would not go where the Holy Ghost would not. Haunted houses are a red light for the Holy Ghost. Gory costumes are a red light for the Holy Ghost. We still love Halloween. We love the excitement of dressing up and having fun with friends and getting candy. But you will not see us gory or gross.
And you will, I hope, see us the Morning of the First Resurrection. Bright. Beautiful. Full of life.
Saturday morning beamed bright... Ok, it was dark. Middle of the night dark really. Isaac, Daniel and I began our day before 6 am. We headed down to the Bountiful temple with name cards in hand to do baptisms for the dead. Isaac was baptized for 8 male ancestors and I was baptized for 11 female ancestors. I had been doing some family history work and we have begun our part to get these family members closer to their eternal goal. Isaac's one comment was "I didn't know I was going to get wet", which makes me wonder, what did he think when he was baptized at age 8?? And when we talk about baptism we talk about immersion, going all the way in. Wouldn't you expect to get wet? Anyhoo, we went to breakfast after where Isaac made us laugh and we all had a good time. He even brought home some of his breakfast to share with Sam and Ruthie.
Today I was in Walmart to grab some spray paint because Isaac is actually going to dress up for Halloween this year. As I left the paint department an older lady called out, I think just for anyone to answer considering there were people all around and she wasn't looking at anyone in particular, that she needed help finding those little plastic containers that you put food in because she made too much stew. So I strode over and said I could take her to them. I pointed out the direction and she said she was glad she asked because she'd already been down that way. So we got there and we looked at the plethora of choices. Small, medium, large, extra large, 3 containers, 9 containers. Then the sailor talk ansued. She was just so sweet and most likely in her 80's and hunched over and talking about the excess of stew at her house and so when the swearing began I just went with it. She was just so sweet. Not shocking or in your face or crude. Just a very sweet and tender "sh*t, they're so big". And on it went. After choosing a set of 4 medium sized food containers with pretty red lids, she said she would like to find a really "cute" roaster pan. Just a small one, mind you. She also needed hydrogen peroxide. Her hair was pink. I told her it was a beautiful white, to which she responded by pointing out that it was a wig. She wore the wig because her hair is pink. Hydrogen peroxide it is then. But first we went to the pans and roasters and such. She so didn't want the big black with gray specks roaster pan. So we looked some more. She found these pans and skillets that were red, green, purple and such and began with all the swearing about how d*mned cute they were. Then she saw the tiny cast iron skillet which you could get and swat your man over the head with if he got outta line. It was just the right size. So we decided everything was too big or too expensive and headed to the hydrogen peroxide. At one point she asked if we were lost. I said no, it's just a big store. I grabbed the smallest bottle when we got to the first aid stuff and told her it was .52 cents. She took it and thanked me and said she was gonna get some kitty stuff now. We said our goodbyes and I went to pay for my spray paint.
So my question is, did you expect to get wet when you were baptized??
Since the end of August I have been killing what I thought was the last fly. But then many more would appear. Out of nowhere, I tell ya! But now it's nearing the end of October. The weather has turned chill. And this is
THE LAST FLY.
Note: please don't notice that my faucet thingy there needs some good vinegar to get rid of the stains. And don't notice that the counter place there behind the sink where the last fly has fallen to its doom is in need of a good scrubbing. Now that the last fly has fallen, it will be cleaned. Not that I was waiting for the last fly to fall to clean it. But because the last fly has landed there.. It needs a good scrubbing. And how many of you said "The Laaaaast Melon" when you read the title of this post? Wouldn't it be fun if you could hear me just tell you the post?! I mean, then I could really tell you some of this stuff with just the right inflection. And stuff. The last melon is from Ice Age. In case you were wondering.
So much for more posting! But we've been busy. More PTA stuff with the end of the fundraiser and then bookfair. And then we came up on the weekend. Friday our neice Audrey was sealed to her sweety Kevin in the Brigham city temple. It was a beautiful day. Luncheon afterward and then the reception that evening. Isaac began his Robotics 4-H club that evening, as well. Ruthie and I got to take some of the roses home from the reception. Gorgeous.
Saturday morning we traveled to my sister's where cousin Zac was baptized. It was so fun to hang out with Abby and Poppy and cousins. After the brunch we changed into play clothes and headed to In and Out for lunch. We were hungry again. Then we went to Lagoon and played for a couple of hours. That evening Daniel and I went to the wedding reception for a woman in our ward. A beautiful day again. Then we went out to dinner, because we hadn't already eaten enough that day, while the kids stayed home and watched a movie. This is a rose from the rose bush Daniel gave me for Mother's day last year. Today when we got home from church the rose had bloomed.
The basement is completely framed. The electrical and plumbing is next on the list. The boys have already staked their claims on rooms and where their stuff will go. This picture is a lead in (or down) to the basement pictures I will post as I keep a record of the finishing!
Hope your weekend was fun and awesome. Fall is here. The weather is cooling and rain is falling. Turn up the heat and cuddle with the ones you love best!
Have you ever feasted on spiritual things and been so spiritually filled that you realize you've been starving for a long time? I went to Time Out For Women on Friday and Saturday with some fantastic women and I feasted and was filled and my spiritual starvation came to an end. Friday night's speakers and music were meant especially for me. I could have come home that night feeling that my cup was full and the ticket price paid. Then we stayed up late and talked and laughed and ate and talked and laughed. After a few moments of sleep, we were all up at 6 am to shower and have breakfast and get back to Saturday's events. More feasting and filling and moments of joy. The last 2 speakers were, again, meant for me. The Spirit whispered the counsel I needed to hear. TOFW is an event we all want to go back to for more feasting and bonding. And laughing and eating.
We got home late that afternoon and I changed and started laundry and then went to the adult session of Stake Conference. Wow. More feasting. Spiritually uplifting messages were abundant. Then Sunday morning was the general session of Stake Conference. Wow again. This time they announced Miracle Choirs. First the youth were called up to sing, then the women, then the men. What an amazing thing to watch as almost every youth, sister and brother went up to participate. By Sunday afternoon I was wiped out. And now that Monday is here I am ready to take on PTA, kids, laundry, dishes, meals, service, cub scouts, and everything else.
Wherever you live, look up Time Out and see when it will be near you. Go. Enjoy. Feast. Live.
Blogging should begin to happen more frequently. At least that's the plan.
Holy cannoli. How long has it been since I've blogged? Never mind. Don't answer that. I've been busy. And I had a virus. Well, not me. My laptop. Although it's not entirely out of the question that I have mono. Just kidding. I don't. So here's what I'll do so I have a record of most of the stuff that's been going on here at our sweet abode.. I'll bullet point. Isn't that cool? Bullet points. It will be awesome. And it has officially taken me 2 days to get all this down. So you better read it!
* The Virus
I have been watching Cake Boss on Netflix recently. As a natural result I have begun speaking with a Long Island accent. But wait, you say. They aren't in Long Island. They aren't even in New York. They are in New Jersey. But my grandma grew up in/on Long Island. Is it in or on? I have no idea. But I just tell my kiddos that their mama from Long Island is here and then just get all loud and Long Islandy. It's fun. Anyhoo, I got on the website for their cake shop. I was curious about the cost of the cakes he makes. There is no cost list. I was bummed. But there was an error message that kept coming up. So I kept deleting it because it's just plain annoying. And there was no error. I must have hit the right deal on one of the messages because nasty viral shut downs ensued. I called Daniel to say there is something wrong with it. When he got home he stated the obvious. To him. Not me. I still kept spreading said viral nastiness every time I tried getting rid of the error messages. It took some doing to get it fixed. He realized, after some time, that nothing was actually wiped out. It was all hidden. So he backed up all my precious files onto the backup hard drive and then began to rebuild the ugliness. My laptop didn't want to cooperate so much. So it took a while. Then it was all fixed and all my files and stuff got put back on. I didn't get back on to blog because I just didn't want to. Until now.
* The Basement
We purchased our home 13 1/2 years ago. The basement has since filled with junk memory filled boxes. Our boys have shared a room most of their young lives. It's now time to spread out. Daniel and I have worked tirelessly to clean the basement out and have taken load after load to the dump, DI and the storage unit. Today there are framers in the basement. The basement's future never looked so bright. They will finish up tomorrow today and then we will work on plumbing and electric. Then we'll hire out the dry wall. Then carpet, paint, finishing touches, furniture, all culminating in moving day. Isaac and Sam will have their own rooms and we will have a storage room and a large play, game, family room to boot, doubling our home's square footage. It's only taken 13 1/2 years to get it done. yay us!
* The PTA
As you may already know, I am on the PTA board at the elementary school this year. I began the year waiting for the time that I would spend hours on end at the school doing, well, PTA stuff. Well folks, it happened. This is fundraiser week and next week is Book Fair. I begin my day at the school at 8:30 and leave when money counting and candy bar box passing out is done. Then I go help with the deposit if it can be done right then. Next week will be more of the same. Although it's kicking my butt, I am enjoying being in the school and doing my job. It's also fun to see the happenings in the office and chatting with neat ladies.
Did you watch conference?? As I listened to President Monson on Saturday morning I cried. I was in the car with Ruthie and I grabbed her arms (I was parked) and said, "YOU CAN GO ON A MISSION WHEN YOU'RE 19!!!!" She didn't quite know how to react as I yelled and squeezed and cried. But as it sunk in she counted the years till she can serve a mission. 10. That's all. She'll be 9 in a few weeks. My boys will each turn 18 while they're still in school, so they will most likely be closer to 19 anyway. But boy, what a monumental announcement. I can't wait to see how the sister missionary numbers will rise in the coming months. I think back to when I chose to serve a mission. I was 21 1/2 when I left. I know I never would have gone if the age was 19 then. I'm sure I would have completely missed that opportunity. I am grateful I did and am so grateful that so many more young women will have the opportunity to serve!!
* The SEOP
In junior high there is a special meeting that takes place with parent, student, and counselor. It's a time to go through the student's goals and make sure they are achieving all they want to. Granted, they are 12 and in 7th grade, but it's never a bad time to see how they are coming in their goals for the future. Isaac and I met with one of the teachers who quickly caught on to Isaac's love of building and engineering. He suggested he take a Tech class in 8th grade with the teacher sitting close to us. That teacher went through some of the things they do in class. Isaac was excited. Then he suggested a class he can take in 9th grade, which I can't remember. But I'm sure we'll figure it out. Isaac has less than 6 years left in school. Then he'll go on a mission, since he can go right after high school. Then he will get to work on what might just be an engineering degree. Or maybe he'll bag groceries awesomely at a grocery store. Who knows. But it's so wonderful to have the opportunities in junior and high school to help him get started on a career.
* The Field Trips
Sammy and Ruthie both had field trips last week. On Tuesday I went with Ruthie's class to the Ogden Nature Center. It was hot I tell ya! One class mate came to sit by me while we ate lunch and said, "It's so cool that I can come on a field trip and have lunch with my scout leader". To which I replied, "I am Ruthie's mom, you know. That's why I'm here." Oh. I think he was a bit deflated. At least he got to eat with his scout leader. Sam and I went to the zoo on Friday. It's wasn't so hot. In fact I wore my sweatshirt most of the day. Each of the kids was supposed to fill out some papers on animals. When we got to the polar bear we had to wait until we could see him. He finally came bounding out and dove into the water. Sam was standing right next to the glass as he swam right passed him, then put his feet on the glass to push off and swim. He did that several times, much to the crowd's amazement. We cheered and laughed as the polar bear entertained us. Then he got out of the water and walked away for a bit. After a few minutes he was back. Diving, swimming, pushing off, showing off for the crowds. He's a people pleaser.
* The Random Commercial Part
Have you seen that commercial that has the kid telling his mom, "Mommy, Mommy! I went potty!". The mom is excited and goes into the bathroom and looks in the toilet, which has not been peed into and says, "Where?". The boy then points to the tub. It's a Clorox commercial and cracks me up every time!! It is so funny that the kid pees in the tub. Because mine have done the very same thing. Funny I tell ya!
* The Joy Part
I had a chance to talk to my good friend Laurie one day after school. I had spent much of the day at the school. I proceeded to go through all the craziness in my life right now. PTA, weddings, cub scouts, field trips, sick hubby, basement, kids, nail polish all over my tub. It just goes on and on. The next day after school, she came over and gave me a gift bag with some Joy in it. A book, foot cream, nail polish, nail polish remover, hand sanitizer. All with a special purpose in helping me de-stress. I loved the nail polish remover for cleaning out my tub. I'll get to it some time. I'm sure. I realized how much I had complained, but also realized how well my friend listened and understood the stress and craziness going on. Thank you Laurie.
* The I'm Not Pregnant Part
In case you're wondering.. I'm not. But this is a bit of an emotional time for me. If we had kept our paperwork in China we would be the parents of 4 children. We would have traveled last month for another baby from China. I would be in the Hell On Wheels part of attachment. I would not be leaving the house at all. I would be a basket case. But I would be happy. But here we are with our 3 awesome kiddos and all the craziness in our lives. And I'm a basket case. Crying and emotional and crazy and using my Long Island accent to break the monotony. We don't second guess, we are right where we should be. But for a few moments I've been what if-ing. And I'm done now and moving on. And we are happy.
* The Time Out Part
Tomorrow I am going to Time Out For Women in Logan. During all the stress and emotion and stuff, I told Daniel that I was going to back out. The Book Fair, Laps For Lyndsay, Stake Conference, money, kids. He said to go and enjoy it and not worry about anything. So I am going with several women from my ward. I am looking forward to just being. And just being there. A short time out for mom.
And with that I end this post. Enjoy this once in a lifetime day of 10-11-12.
In case you were wondering. My laptop got a virus. A nasty one too. Daniel has cleared out the hard drive and now he's just trying to get the lap top itself to work. We've been so busy with the basement that he hasn't had a chance to sit and work on it in a while. When it's up and running I'll catch you up on everything! Everything, I tell ya! That's the deal. In case you were wondering.
I have just swatted a total of several dozen flies in my house. And the amazing thing is.. There are dozens more. My family came for dinner and hanging out last night and the flies joined in. How many flies have you swatted recently?
And then there's this. A couple of weeks ago I took Sam down to Primary Children's Hospital where we saw a pediatric Gastroenterologist . While there, the doc went over the blood work that was done on SammySamSam when he was having the explosive bloody noses. He mentioned his blood sugar was 64. It occurred to me that maybe his blood sugar could be a cause of some of the crazy times we have with Sam that cause him to act as if he were having a hypoglycemic episode. Hmmm.
Last Tuesday night was one of those times. Sam was crazy boy. He wouldn't eat, he wouldn't stop crying, he wouldn't stop fighting and arguing. So I suggested we test his blood. He freaked out. I don't know why. I mean it's just a poke and a little blood. Honestly. Just let me poke your arm and get a little blood. After some time and a couple of bribes, he accepted the $5 and candy bar bribe and held out his arm for the poke. We tested. His blood sugar was 26. Now I would be on the floor needing an injection of glucose at that point. Sam said he felt fine. So he ate the candy bar and a ham and cheese sandwich and I called the doctor in the morning.
The appointment was for Friday afternoon. We tested his blood before breakfast, after school, at dinner and at bedtime. His blood sugar dropped around dinner time each time. At the doctor appointment we talked about other signs of type 1 Diabetes. She then called an Endocrinologist to see what they would recommend. The recommendation was to draw lots o' blood and see if he was predispositioned for Diabetes. They can look for anti bodies that would eventually attack the insulin when it's secreted which would then cause type 1 Diabetes.
They took 5 vials of blood from this boy. I remembered when I was 12 and going to the hospital every month to have blood drawn. Vials of it. My mom would always joke that they kept all of my blood in the basement and fed vampires with it. Seriously, they took a lot of blood. So I joked with Sam that they will feed the vampires in the basement with his blood. He wasn't amused.
This morning I got the call with the results. Everything came back normal. No predisposition to type 1 Diabetes. We just need to test when he starts acting like it's low. In other words, when Sam is crazy, test his blood.
I am relieved that there isn't anything to worry about with Diabetes in the future. I am grateful that we can get in to see our pediatrician quickly and easily. I am grateful to be the only type 1 Diabetic in my family.
just doesn't make any sense. I mean if you have cake, you're gonna eat it. Am I right? It's not going to just sit there having you gaze lovingly at it. Eat it, for Pete's sake. And who the heck is Pete? I think maybe a thorough analyzation of the things we say is in order. Any takers? Anyone want cake?
Well, whether you want it or not, this is a cake post. I hope you want it. And I hope you try it. Yum. Yesterday after school I got the elementary school's newsletter. It was long. Packed with all kinds of information! I was impressed. One page (page 6 if your kids are in the same school) has a recipe. A recipe for cake. Yum. It called for ingredients I already have on hand, too, much to my delight. Because I believe a finely done food storage room should have many cake mixes. Many. And brownie mixes. It's the right thing to do.
This is what you need. 1 box of Angel Food cake and 1 box of another cake mix. Put the 2 cake mixes into a gallon zip bag. Mix it all up good. I chose Devil's Food cake. Doesn't that create a wonderful conundrum of sorts? Angel Food. Devil food. Ohh the perplexity of it all. And just don't look at the Creamy wrapper behind the zip bag. One of my kids left it there ;)
Grab a hot chocolate mug from your shelf. Rinse it out 'cause I know it hasn't been used in a while. Although the mornings are so cool now that my house almost feels like Fall is coming. I love that!! But still not hot chocolate weather. So dust it, rinse it, wash it. Whatever. Then take 3 tablespoons of the cake mix and 2 tablespoons of water. Mix them together really good. I used a fork so I wouldn't end up with powdery chunks in my end result. Blech! Stick that bad boy in the microwave for 1 minute. 60 seconds if you're feeling saucy. Let it sit for 1 minute after it's finished. 60 seconds if yo... Never mind.
I plopped this one out on a plate. I then proceeded to pour a lot little chocolate sauce over it.
Eat it up, yum!
When I offered it to the kids I got these reactions...
Ruthie: "MOM, this is wonderful. It's so moist and delicious. I think this would make a great Family Home Evening treat!"
Sam: "I don't eat cake without frosting!"
Isaac: "Will you please buy me some more air soft pellets for my gun when you go shopping? Are you going shopping tomorrow? Please? I don't want any cake."
At least he said please.
3-2-1 Cake -In-A-Mug
Angel food cake mix
Favorite flavor cake mix
In a zip bag, mix the 2 cake mixes together. Use a microwave safe mug, mix 3 Tbs of cake mix and 2 Tbs water. Stir well
Microwave on high for 1 minute
Let sit 1 minute
And go ahead and add cake mixes to your food storage!