Monday, January 31, 2011

Miss Them Already

I had such a great time being with these guys. It's hard when you live so far away and your grandchildren don't know you very well, but I think little G-Man and I became pretty good buds. Yesterday we had a fun time playing with his Mr. Potato Heads.
Appropriately enough, mine is the one with what looks like a cruise hat ; )

Leaving this morning was a little easier, because I know Allan and I will be going back in a month for the baby's blessing. By the way, I LOVE this picture of little Lauren looking at her mama before we left for Church. It's almost like she is REALLY listening to her mama.

BTW, for those of you in the Ogden area, Macy will be performing this Friday at Time Out for Women. She has a CD which is available for pre-order at Deseret Book.

I love my family. Soon we'll go out to Cali for this little girl's blessing. (Hard to believe, but she is 6 months old ALREADY.

And, just in case you need a laugh--Let me share...

Whenever I get on the plane and they go through the "how to put on your seatbelt" I laugh and think, "Seriously, if you don't know how to buckle a seatbelt, you shouldn't be allowed to leave your house." Well, that was until Saturday. We were out and I was in between the two carseats in the backseat of the car. When we stopped at Costco and I went to get out--I couldn't unbuckle the seatbelt. Neal tried to help me and he couldn't figure out. It took Macy to look and say, "You're trying to unbuckle it from the wrong side" Nothing like feeling like an idiot.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Texas Update

I've been having a great time in Texas. I have been having breakfast picnics

(now don't laugh, don't you have M&M pajamas ; )

I've had some great meals at some interesting places--like Chuy's where they have a cool ceiling;

Rudy's--which has the most delicious barbeque. The brisket was superb.

So glad Macy and Lauren were able to join us for lunch.

The Mighty Cone where I had this yummy creation--chicken and avocado which were deep fried with a cornflake/nut/chili crust and was served in a tortilla cone and had a delicious spicy sauce and sat in a bed of coleslaw. It was also served with an order of chili fries (no the fries were not covered with chili but were salted with sea salt and chili powder It was all so incredibly tasty.

After that "light" meal, we walked a couple of trailers away to Hey Cupcake where little G-Man enjoyed his cupcake (no one was going to capture a picture of me with my face in my carrot cake cupcake with oodles of cream cheese frosting

And then I went to the Big Top candy store where I found the solution to my trying to eat 5 or 7 servings of vegetables on my challenges I'm doing. If I have this kind of "fruit salad" how many servings would it equal???? BTW, I may be stopped at the border when I try bring my stash of candy across.

It will be great fun to take Allan to some of these places when we come back when Lauren is blessed in March.

But by far the BEST part of the trip--hanging out with these little ones.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Some Things I've Learned In Texas

  • Things aren't always as you think they will be. Ever since I arrived here there has been a lot of sickness here. I haven't been able to take as many pictures of my cute little grandkids as I'd like (glazed faces do not make for very good pics) In spite of being sick, this little guy was still as cute as can be.
  • I sure miss my hubby when I travel. When I go someplace that we've been before it's not a big thing, but when I'm seeing new things, I'd really rather have him with me.
  • I do not like driving in an area that I'm not familiar with, but thank goodness for gps that guides me. I haven't even heard "RE-CALCULATING" very often. (BTW, they do attach much better to their little mounting bracket than they do to the rear-view mirror.
  • Google is even more helpful than I thought--it sure helped me figure out how to get blue marker off a little boy who decided he wanted to be a faster runner so he tried to color a costume on himself--starting with his hands. I really blew it not taking a picture but not sure his parents would appreciate may having it for the world to see ; ) I did capture this picture of him and his dad at the hospital in his baby sister Lauren's room. She has an eye-infection and had to be admitted to the children's hospital. G-Man did not like wearing the mask.
  • Doing challenges when you travel stink. I've lost more points than I had hoped, but I know some things are more important than points--like enjoying birthday cake.
  • Glad baby Lauren will be home later today.

Thursday, January 20, 2011


I've been thinking a lot about my one-word resolution for the year--RECOGNIZE. For Christmas I got this great book called, "Divine Signatures" by Gerald Lund. He writes a lot about blessings and how sometimes "it is as though the Lord "signs" the blessings personally so that we will know with certainty that it comes from Him." The book has made me do a lot of reflecting on past experiences. As well, my husband had shared something he learned recently about the importance of our passing along to our families wonderful experiences that we have had--doing so really uplifts and strengthens us.

With all of that in mind, I wanted to record a couple that have really helped me recognize His hand in my life.

The first one is an experience I had with tithing many years ago. I was struggling with understanding how tithing has nothing to do with money and EVERYTHING to do with faith. I was working for the County and was paid monthly. I paid my tithing the beginning of the month and had a few days to go until pay day. I had money for gas but not for milk, and with a 4 year old, I knew he needed milk. I didn't know what I was going to do. I was cleaning the bathroom and crying, "I am trying to do what I'm supposed to do, I have paid my tithing but don't have money for milk. Just a minute of so later a woman from the Ward called to ask if I would babysit. When I went over she explained that she was going through the directory looking for Young Women to call and saw my name and thought, "I bet Sister J could use the money." I knew that her call was my answer to my prayer. I earned enough money to buy milk and a few other things.

The next experience came many years later. My daughter, Heidi, was struggling, and I was really worried about her. It was a Tuesday and she was attending a BYU Devotional. In my prayers that morning I had expressed to my Heavenly Father how worried I was about her and how much I just wanted to know she was okay. I was silently praying again as I was watching the the Devotional on my computer when all of the sudden there she was on the screen as they panned the audience at either the opening or the closing. She was smiling and I just felt, "She is fine".

Those are just a couple of examples in my life that helped me to really RECOGNIZE His hand in my life. I'm so grateful for these examples that helped me to always remember He is mindful of me.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Look Who's 60

YES, ME!!!


I so appreciated the birthday messages that were posted on FB. Sure felt the love.

A few weeks ago when we were in Utah, we were visiting with a couple of friends and one of them said, "Look at me, I'm going to be 64. HOW DID THAT HAPPEN?" I understood exactly what he was saying. Throughout the years, I have had in my mind what 60 would be like AND THIS ISN'T IT. I guess I'm just grateful, it isn't like what I thought it was going to be.

Do I have the energy I had when I was 30 or 40? DEFINITELY NOT. I just can't go, go, go like I could before. But I sure am grateful I can still GO.

It's been a great 60 years. So many memories--some good, some not so good. I feel like I've written a lot about my growing up years, so I won't bore you, but I have to write a few memories. I'LL DO MY BEST NOT TO BORE YOU TOO MUCH.

I loved school. I was so incredibly happy when I was old enough to go to school. My sisters and i played school all the time. Before word searches, we used to take the newspaper and cut out articles and one of our assignments when we played school was to "circle all the vowel's in the article" ; )

Sports: My dad had 6 daughters and no sons. I guess I was the son he never had. He was a sports enthusiast. Boxing was a big thing when I was little--just ask your dads/granddads. I'm sure many of them watched Friday night boxing ; ) He loved the San Francisco Giants--which is why the Giants winning the World Series was such a highlight for me this past year.

Summertime:We didn't take many family vacations, but I do remember running through the sprinklers, sleeping in the backyard and sitting in the weeping willow trees. Goodness, life was much simpler back then.

Mealtime: I don't remember my parents eating at the table with us. The 6 of us girls ate together in the kitchen and my parents ate at TV trays in the living room. We had a covered cake plate that came in very handy. When there was a particular vegetable that we didn't like one of us would hide everyone's vegetables under the lid, until my mom came to check to see if we'd eaten our dinner ; ) Then whoever had dishes that night would throw the veggies away.

Eating Out: We didn't go out for dinner very often, but I do remember the first time. We went to an Italian restaurant, and when they brought us our ice cream for dessert we had the biggest laugh--it was the tiniest dish of ice cream we'd ever seen.

But, after my dad died, I remember walking with my mom to a store that would serve a hot dog and drink for a dime. It was such a treat.

Changes: After my parents died and my sisters and I went to live with Helen and Les, life changed. I still loved school. We all ate at the same table--no hiding our vegetables anymore ; ) I can't (and never will) compare the two households. Each were different. My sisters and I knew we were so blessed to have been able to stay together.

Obviously, there have been lots of other changes. I became a mom when I was 19 years old. (And be grateful I wasn't wearing that skirt when I was holding Kyle because I had him when I was 40 and the legs just didn't look as good ; ) I have to say after being here in Texas and watching Macy--I know why women don't have babies at 60 ; ) Have to say I had the same feeling when I watched Daph after Georgia was born. These girls are AMAZING.

I was going to start by telling you how much I love being a mom and grandma,but let me start by telling you how much I LOVE BEING A WIFE. I love this guywe really need to take a picture of the two of us. Maybe when we come out for baby Lauren's blessing we'll ask Macy to take a picture of us. He is my rock. I depend on him so much. We have so much fun together. I love being able to visit my children, but I love it so much more when he's with me. It's just not the same when he's not here.

Now I can say it: I love being a mom and a grandma. Do I worry? Sure--I only want what is best for my children and my grandchildren. It is so fun to watch them grow and become great people. I love them all. Just to assure you I know as well as anyone ME, MY HUSBAND, AND NONE OF OUR CHILDREN ARE PERFECT.

Now let me post a few more pictures.

Obviously, if you read my blog you know Allan and I have been able to do a little travelling here and there ; ) As I sat on the plane coming here on Monday I was visiting with a woman and talking about places we have visited and things I have seen. I told the woman one of the places I'd highly recommend is Sydney, Australia.

Of course, having my birthday fall on a Monday meant I got to receive an e-mail from my little Elder. This picture made me laugh, but I have to tell you I can't wait to see the pictures of the cowboy boots he bought ; )

I loved being able to talk to these guys on my birthday.

And, of course, it was wonderful to have these guys there the morning of my birthday. It was fun--our flights departed like 3 minutes apart--well, actually, mine was an hour late, but who knew--I SLEPT THE WHOLE TIME WE WERE OUT ON THE TARMAC. (See, sometimes being old isn't such a bad thing ; )

This guy knew that one of my favorite movies is The Last of the Mohicans so he got me an edited version for my birthday--such a sweetie.

And, of course, when I got to TX, I was greeted at the airport by Neal and G-Man. (It was so cute because G-Man was holding a little birthday sign. Macy's folks were at the airport because they were heading home, so I even got to give them a hug when I arrived ; ) While I've been here in Texas since my birthday, I have to tell you there is some sickness in the house so it's been so busy and I have not even gotten out my camera. I KNOW THAT IS SHOCKING. (Well, I did take a pic yesterday, but not of the kids.)

When I got to their house, I found a sweet note from these guys. Sure wish I'd been able to see them.

And because I haven't been able to post any pictures of my little grandson G-Man, I'm going to steal this one Amanda's husband took of him. Isn't he a cutie???

I've turned the comments off because my birthday has passed ; )

SIDENOTE: I will get out and read posts--it's just been a tad crazy. I don't know how you young moms get everything done.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

The Final Wedding Reception

It has been a crazy week of getting everything ready for the reception.

On Wednesday, I dropped some things off at the Church so the work could begin.

On Thursday night, a few of my friends met at the Church and we got to work. Of course, that day i had to snow like crazy--I really didn't want to get out in the snow, but I DID.

Friday afternoon Allan arrived home and ran a couple of errands and then picked me up and away we went to run more. And then Heidi and Daniel arrived very late that night. There connection in Minneapolis was too tight and unfortunately their bags didn't arrive.

Allan and i were up bright and early on Saturday and headed out to see if we could pick up some of the last minute stuff. I had cheesecakes to make and

The cultural hall looked beautiful--Allan and I laughed that if we were doing the decorating on our own, their would have been just a tablecloth with a flower in a vase, but these were so beautiful.

I thought the favors were really cute. No, I didn't have them in a box--this is just how I transported them to the Church.

When I first talked to our friends, the B's, they had these INCREDIBLE ideas to use columns and do a photo display--WOW was I ever amazed. I was so grateful that Macy had done such an amazing job with the photos. Of course, it didn't hurt one big that Heidi and Daniel are just so cute ; )

I know Heidi and Daniel were VERY IMPRESSED

Lots of time and lots of work (a whole lot more for the B's.) So grateful for friends that were there to help And when it was time to clean up--OH MY GOODNESS. IT WAS INCREDIBLE. I wouldn't have thought the decorations could have come down that quickly.

The food was delicious. Sister D. did empanadas, spring rolls with sweet and sour sauce and stir fry vegetables with ride noodles--YUM, YUM, YUM.

It was fun having everyone have a chance to see the little video presentation with a slideshow of each of them and then the video of the Daddy-Daughter Dance ; )

the evening was lovely. So fun to see these three together again. They have shared many fun times together.

Thursday, January 13, 2011


Every year the closer it gets to my birthday the more nostalgic I become. (And, maybe this post has something to do with the fact that while making snowflakes last night, i was watching American Graffiti. It always reminds me of high school and cruising the strip. It would be scary to think how many gallons of gas we burned on Friday and Saturday nights driving up and down East 14th Street ; ) And then when I read that David Nelson had passed away, my mind went back to years and years of old TV shows. We don't have Nickelodeon, so I can't watch the old shows, and I don't even know if some of these are even available. Some of my favorites (by the way, all these images from Google images)

Ozzie and Harriet--Had a teenage crush on Ricky, but then again lots of girls did ; )

Father Knows Best--and i loved Robert Young in Marcus Welby, and it was so fun to see Betty years later in Pretty Woman.

Leave It to Beaver--didn't everyone know someone who was like Eddie Haskell????

As well, we always watched Bonanza.
(And so did Allan's family. I bought a DVD set for his sisters for Christmas--was tempted to have them pop it in before I left, so I could see Little Joe ; ) BTW, when i was a young teenager I babysat for Pernell Roberts one time.

One other show that I loved and remember watching with my mother was called "The Loretta Young Show". I remember she would walk down a staircase when she came on screen. She ALWAYS reminded me of my mother.

It seems like only yesterday I was watching these shows. Do you feel like I do--LIFE IS MOVING FAR TOO QUICKLY.