Wednesday, April 16, 2014

TIME TO RETURN

Life is crazy, and I think it's time to get back into blogging.  (And not just because I NEED TO VENT, but I'm sitting here thinking maybe it's not necessary.  All I will say is I am worried about a lot of things.  I do appreciate General Conference and all the wonderful talks I heard.  I'm so incredibly grateful for prayer.)

When I began my photography project, I decided I really couldn't do both.  After two years of taking a photo a day, it's time to let it go.  As much as I enjoyed it and have learned a great deal, I really need to have more of a place to record my thoughts and do more journaling, so I am back.

I will have to fill in the blanks here--after all Christmas was amazing and I really need to write about it, not to mention some trips to see some little and some bigger ones ; )

Look it's already April and I haven't blogged since November.  Just a heads up.    I will get out and read blogs, too.  That is something I just haven't done, although most of the people I follow are on facebook, that's just not the same ; )

Let me end by saying THIS WINTER HAS BEEN SO LONG.  And, don't try to tell me it's over, IT ISN'T OVER YET--at least, not here.  We had snow on Saturday AGAIN.

Just to give you an idea, this picture was taken March 24th.


I do know that eventually it will end.  I was able to finally run outside a couple of days last week, but it has gotten too cold again.  And, frankly after the fall last fall, I'm a little leery of running when there is ice on the ground ; ) 

This weekend is our Stake Temple Trip and I am so looking forward to spending lots of time there. 

And by the way, Happy Birthday to one of my grandsons.  He is an incredible young man.  I cherish the wonderful memories of I have of him.  We were fortunate enough to spend lots and lots of time with him when he was growing up.  Unfortunately, we don't get to see him very often any more and I miss that.  Here he is with his son, my sweet little grandson Logan.



As well, Happy Birthday to Heidi's husband.  I can't tell you how grateful I am for him.  With her going through another medical challenge and being so far away, I appreciate knowing he is right there by her side taking care of her.  













Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Thanksgiving

Yes, I know we are coming up on Valentine's Day and I am talking about Thanksgiving, but there just hasn't been time to do these posts.

I was excited to have the opportunity to head to Utah for a couple of days before Kyle and I took a road trip to California together.   Actually, it was more like 1 day ; )  Kyle picked me up late Sunday night.  I spent a good part of Monday running errands.  I did meet up with Brent in the afternoon so we could have In-N-Out together.  I also tried to get a bunch of gift cards for the kids for Christmas.  It was a lot of fun.  That evening, I met up with the kids at Zupas for dinner.  And then after we headed to the movies to see The Hunger Games:  Catching Fire.  Absolutely loved it.  Allan and I had already seen it, but I loved seeing it again.  Brent and I headed out to do some grocery shopping and then we both went to the late showing of The Saratov Approach--wow, what a movie.

The next morning, Kyle and I packed up for our trip.  I just have to share our crazy "cooler".  I couldn't find one at my sister-in-laws, so this was the second best thing.  It did serve it's purpose and kept the little things we had cold.



We had a great time in California.  We got there Tuesday night.  Wednesday the kids were home from school and we basically just hung out.  That night we went to see Frozen.  We loved it.  Such a cute movie.

The meal on Thanksgiving was wonderful.  I loved the little turkey Hannah and Drew put together.   We were to write the things we are thankful for and put them in the turkey.



I have to say, Stephen does make a beautiful turkey.  It was a wonderful meal--and, as always, I ate way too much.  But, it was worth every calorie.































Here are the lovely ladies.


Stephen, Daphne, and Kyle went to the mall to do a little black Friday shopping.  I wasn't really interested.  


On Friday we went mini golfing.  We had such a fun time--I have decided I am the world's worst mini golfer.  (If I am ever on the Price is Right, that is the one game I hope I don't have to play ; )  It was a fun course that was all decorated Disney style for Christmas.




After golfing we went out for Sushi.  Kiah had been working but met us there.  (Note to self--in pictures, don't wear the reflective running jacket ; )


After that Daphne, Kiah, and I went shopping for the baby shower that was being held the next day for my Jason's girlfriend.    It was a really cute shower--her sister really did a great job decorating and all the little extras were so cute.


My granddaughter, Kiah, worked very hard to make the little "cigars"--very clever.

They had everyone make a little onesie for the baby.  This was my granddaughter Hannah's.


I think Georgia had a great time being with all the girls.


Someone made one of the cutest gifts.  I have seen diaper cakes, but never a diaper train.




I think baby Jack is all set.  Their family and friends were very generous.  I love this little SF Giants that Daphne made for them.





























While I was there, the weather was lovely.  Stephen and Drew played a little catch with the football--so fun to get these shots.




































While I was there they taught Kyle and I how to play Pit.  (I have to say my favorite part of playing Pit is hearing Georgia say, "The market is now open".



I have to include one little picture of my roommate.  I hated to say goodbye to this little girl:



We got up Sunday morning and headed for Utah.  The drive was fine--no issues, except when we would stop at the gas station.  Yes, they were VERY busy!

I spent most of Monday running more errands--thank goodness I had Kyle's car ; )  Heidi came by to pick up a couple of things in the afternoon.  She was going to keep Brent's Christmas gifts that were not coming to Winnipeg, so that he could have them when he got home.  It was easier saying goodbye to her because I knew I would see her a few weeks later.

Monday night I did some shopping for Kyle and then took everything to him.   He drove me to my hotel.  I had decided to stay close to the airport, so no one would have to drive me to the airport early Tuesday morning.  I guess I picked the WORST HOTEL IN ALL OF SALT LAKE CITY.  I don't think I have ever been so scared in my life.  First clue--when I went to hang up my jacket, no closet.  Second, when I decided to call the front desk--no phone.  I was very happy when the morning arrived and I could catch my shuttle to go to the airport!

It was a GREAT trip, but I have to admit I was ready to see my cute little husband!!!!




Friday, January 24, 2014

NOVEMBER WAS A BLUR

I realize that I haven't posted since my anniversary post, and believe me, a lot has happened since then.

Way back in September when I was in Texas, I called my sister, Gayle, who was in the hospital.  We talked for awhile and although she sounded breathless, she told me she was getting better.  I was quite happy.  I was in Austin and she was in the Dallas area.  As I look back, I wished I had purchased a ticket to fly there before going home.

In early, November I spoke with my sister, Linda, who told me Gayle wasn't getting better.  And then on November 12th, we talked on the phone and we were trying to determine what to do.  The next day she called and told me that she and two of my other sisters were flying into Dallas to go to the hospital to see her, as her husband didn't think she was going to leave the hospital.  They decided that whatever happened they were flying home on Monday.  (Gayle had told her husband that she did not want a funeral, but wanted to be cremated)  Allan was out of town and I started looking for flights.  I found one that was leaving in the late afternoon on Thursday and arrived quite late in the evening.  My sisters had been to the hospital and came back to the airport to pick me up.  After grabbing something to eat we headed for a hotel and got into bed around 1 in the morning.  (Note to self:  NEVER AGAIN PUT FOUR OF US IN ONE ROOM--CRAZY!!!!!!)

Got up and ready and headed for the hospital which was only about 15 minutes away.  (Oh, before that changed to TWO ROOMS!)  I was absolutely shocked when I saw my sister.  I would have bet anyone that the woman lying in that bed was not her.  She looked horrible.  She was all puffy.  She was on a ventilator and in a medically induced coma.  (So grateful I talked to her in September)

We talked with her nurse (who was absolutely amazing) and then to her doctor--both of whom did not paint a pretty picture.  Her kidneys were failing and they considered sending her to another hospital for dialysis, but they were concerned she could not handle the transport.  The nurse asked if we wanted her to attempt to wake her from the coma--she told us she had tried earlier that morning but Gayle did not respond.  Normally with the drug they were using, the patient immediately awakes.  The fact she didn't was not a good sign.  We told her we would rather wait until Gayle's husband got there.

We left and headed for lunch.  We talked a lot about the quality of Gayle's life, and I knew I didn't want to watch her continue to suffer.  It is times like this that I am so very grateful for my understanding of the Plan of Salvation.  I do not know how my sisters could watch her without that knowledge.

When we returned to the hospital, Gayle's husband and daughter and granddaughter and grandson (whom I had never met)  arrived.  It was so good to see them. and was nice to have a chance to visit.   (My niece had battled breast cancer during the previous year and it was great to see her doing well.)

We visited up in Gayle's room and then headed to dinner.  I decided to stay down in the lobby so others could have a chance to visit with her.  That gave me an opportunity to help with Gayle's grandson who was too young.  Before we left the hospital we decided to go up and say goodbye to her.  That's when I saw my nephew who had come to the hospital.

Sometime late that night we decided to head back to our hotel.  We got in the car and my brother in law tried to call one of my sisters and then we could see them all running back into the hospital.  Apparently they called to say she was in trouble.  She passed a short time later.

We went up to her room and one of my sisters was having a difficult time and didn't want to leave her.  I'm sure she couldn't understand why I was at peace.  I shared with her my feelings that lying on that bed was just her body--that her spirit was gone and she was no longer in pain.  Yes, I was sorry to lose her, but I was so grateful to know she was no longer miserable.  When I hugged my brother in law and he said, "What am I going to do now?", my heart just broke.  Denise is a strong young lady, but she loved her mama, and I know this is going to be very hard for her.

We spent the next day visiting with my niece and her family getting ready for the memorial for her.  Here is a picture of her taken  on her wedding day back in 1968.  She is with Helen (Les's wife).



On Sunday I had the chance to have breakfast with my great-grandson and his parents.  I was so grateful that they made the drive over to our hotel to pick me up so we could have some time together.  It was a much needed lift.


My sisters and I drove out to the community where the memorial was going to be held.  I was so impressed with how they threw it together in such a short time and it was a lovely day.   My sister loved crafts and she did so many wonderful things.  It was fun to see pictures of her handiwork.  I loved the little bassinet cover she had made for her granddaughter.   My grand niece had worked hard on putting pictures together to display at her memorial.



This is one of my favorite pictures of Jaclyn (my grand niece and Gayle's husband).


I was so grateful to have a chance at the the memorial to meet Darrell's brother and sisters and other family members.  I knew he was going to be well taken care of.



It was hard to leave and say goodbye, but I am grateful for facebook and telephones so we can stay in touch.



It was a hard few days, but as always, I am grateful for family and especially grateful for the Plan of Salvation.

It still seems impossible to me that she is gone.  She would have celebrated her 64th birthday just a few days later.  I sure miss her.



Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Anniversary



Allan and I celebrated our 31st Anniversary last week.  Talk about anti-climatic.  We gave each other cards, and had leftovers for dinner.  It was fun hearing from some of the kids.  I don't think they knew what to say when we told them how we were celebrating.  Allan gave me an option of one of two gifts--a cruise around South America or a week in Hawaii.  I think he was a little surprised when I said, "You know we have some things going on next year, let's wait."  I'm sure he was thinking, "Who are you, and what have you done with my wife?"

We decided on Friday to head to Regina and go to the temple--no better way to celebrate your anniversary.  It was FABULOUS.  We did have Dairy Queen mudslides Friday night after the temple!!!!

I love going to the temple.  Whenever I leave I am strengthened and uplifted and know I CAN DO THIS.  Life can get tough, but when I leave the temple I KNOW EXACTLY WHAT I WANT AND THAT IT'S ALL WORTH IT.

I am so incredibly grateful for my husband.  He is amazing and there is no one I'd rather share this journey with.

Sidenote #1:  A little update on my 100 days until Christmas challenge--I ended up trashing it when I got involved in a different challenge.  But that challenge, which ends this weekend, has been GREAT.
And, it didn't involve any restrictions on treats, so I was happy.

Sidenote #2:  The wrist is pretty much back to normal, however, I do have a bit of a dip in my wrist, which apparently will always be that way. No problem.

Sidenote #3:  A couple of weeks ago I went to see the geese at Fort Whyte and captured a great shot which ended up on the Top Twenty for the week on my 365 project.  I was pretty excited!!!


Sidenote #4:  So excited about Christmas.  IT'S GOING TO BE GREAT!!!!!!!!!!!
                               


Saturday, September 14, 2013

Christmas IS Coming


















YES, you read the title right!!!  We are 101 days until Christmas.  Now why is that significant??? Because I have decided to do a 100 Day Challenge and I want to end right before Christmas, so I need to start today.   Here on the blog, I have written about 30 day challenges, and I have even done a couple.   I think I'm ready for a 100 Day Challenge--maybe I'm just a glutton for punishment or I miss those on-line challenges I've done before.  When I first did the 30 day challenge, I only did two or three.  This will  force me to JUST KEEP GOING!!!   If you have read my blog for any length of time, you know I am a list maker.  So I have my list of goals.

I am not going to put my goals here because some are very personal.  I will just say that they include physical fitness, spiritual, and personal.  I will tell you that one of them does involve one treat a day (scary because during that 100 days there will be Halloween, and i am one who has to buy Halloween candy a couple of times if I buy it too early ; )  There will also be Canadian Thanksgiving and American Thanksgiving--yes, we celebrate both, and, of course, all that Christmas baking!!!

I was going to add a goal to practice 15 minutes a day, but I really can't do it with my left wrist ; (  So that will be one for another time!!!  So wish me luck.

Now, speaking of Christmas, I have already started my Christmas shopping.  Yippee!!!


SIDENOTE #1:  It is starting to feel like fall and I love everything about Fall.  The temps, the colors, the smells, making and eating soups, etc.   I can't wait for the trees to start turning.  (I still miss our big beautiful pine tree.)

SIDENOTE #2  I went for my first physical therapy appointment on Wednesday and I asked her why the outside of my wrist is still so painful.  She explained about the bones lining up, etc., and then said, "He did tell you that you broke your wrist in two places, didn't he?"  Now before you think that it was wrong of him not to tell me, let me say, my hearing isn't the greatest.  He very well, could have told me and I just didn't hear him.  I only heard about the inside part of my wrist where the bad break was.  She also explained that it broke at the joint and the reason they waited to permanently cast it was to be sure it didn't move.

She also told me it might not look the same after I'm done.  I told her, no problem, I am not a wrist model ; )  However, when I take off the tensor bandage and realize the things I can't do, it is somewhat discouraging.  Then again, IT'S JUST MY WRIST.  I have friends who are dealing with so much more!!!!

SIDENOTE #3:  Heidi and Brent ran a 5K this morning, and they were amazing.  Heidi finished in 22:30 and Brent finished in 24:50.  I can't believe it!!!  I ran 5 miles today and won't tell you how long it took me!!!

SIDENOTE #4:  My missionary grandson is doing fabulous in the MTC.  He is loving it.  I love reading his e-mails and seeing the pictures.  Here is one with his District and their teacher.




Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Trip to Texas

The end of August, Allan, Kyle, and I travelled to Grand Forks so we could get on a plane--Kyle's final destination would be Utah, and ours would be Texas.  We had a nice dinner together at Olive Garden and then went to the movies.  We went to see Jobs.  No, it wasn't the best movie in the world, but I enjoyed it and learned a lot.  I didn't know much about Steve Jobs, and I have to admit the movie didn't exactly portray him as a stand-up guy, but I sure appreciate his creativity.  Of course, I am a big Apple fan.

Up bright and early to head for the airport and our flight to Denver--we kissed Kyle goodbye and headed or our flights--yes, flights!!!  We saw several soldiers and I went a couple of groups and thanked them for their sacrifice.  (I so appreciate them for what they do)

When we landed in Austin, we had a little greeting part that included Neal, Chris and G-Man.  A quick ride to their house and then we waited!!!!  Yes, I was happy to see everyone, BUT I couldn't wait to see my newest little great grandson Baby L.  I had seen pictures, but as Tammy and Marvin sing, "Ain't Nothin Like the Real Thing, Baby".

And oh, what a cuite he is, and such a good baby.  Look at that face!!!



We had a great time while we were there.  We headed to one of our favorite places to eat--Rudy's Barbeque, and it was AS GOOD AS EVER.  As always, I ate way, way too much.



From Rudy's we went to see the Bat's.  I knew Allan would love it.  It is such an amazing experience.



And since we were still hungry--yeah, sure--we went to an ice cream place.  It was delicious.

The next day was a lovely day at Church.  Gotta love how handsome this little guy and his family were.



Macy fixed a fantastic meal of brisket--YUMMY and a delicious salad.   And then for desert she served frozen berries covered with a hot chocolate sauce--it was PERFECT.

We had an opportunity to ichat with some of the family.

Then after the kids went to bed it was time for a little SCUM.  The evening was full of laughs.
Before we headed out in the morning, I had a chance to hold Baby L and G-Man was taking video of us.  His dad captured this picture, and I am so glad we have it.



We then headed out for a wonderful hike.  First stop was at a park that had some beautiful peacocks.

Love the color of this dragonfly.



We then went over to Mt. Bonnell.  The view was amazing.  The houses were ABSOLUTELY gorgeous.  This was one of my favorites?


Here is the gang:


We then went to an incredible hamburger place--wow, yummy.  Boy did I splurge--I had a hamburger, fries and a milkshake!!!!

Chris, Heather, and Baby L left for home.  So sad to see them go--I just don't know when we'll see them again.

We went back to the house and everyone rested and then went for a swim. I think this little guy had a blast.   


And so did this little one:




Monday, August 26, 2013

How Can 30 Days Go by so Quickly


We picked Kyle up in GF a month ago tomorrow.  That month has gone by much too quickly.  I miss him already.  Yesterday when I was making cookies for Allan's meeting with the missionaries, he helped when I realized it was pretty painful on my wrist to take the dough off the spoon.



He and I have had a lot of fun watching episodes he's missed of Modern Family.  On Sunday evenings we have played games.  We even convinced Allan to play Scattergories with us and even played Allan's personalized version of Monopoly.



It's been great to have him here, as I have it difficult to do so many little things around the house.  He's washed windows, pulled weeds, scrubbed cupboards, cleaned light fixtures, etc.  

The thing I will miss most about this guy is just talking to him.  He has a great head on his shoulders and helps me see things differently.  I've been struggling with a lot of things lately, and he has been very helpful.

Sidenote #1:  Today is Brent's 28th birthday--and days like this, I wish I could just pop on a plane to go see him.  Because goodness knows HAVING ME THERE WOULD MAKE HIS BIRTHDAY SO MUCH BETTER ; )  He is a great young man and I am grateful he is my son!!!!  (Had to use this picture--one of my favorites ; )





Sidenote #2:  Tomorrow is Allan's 70th.  He figures we celebrated at the reunion so has MADE ME PROMISE there will be no celebrating tomorrow.  But, he has asked that I make his favorite dessert--German Chocolate Pudding Cake for a meeting he has tomorrow night.  Of course, I will oblige!!!