Last year at Christmas we spoke to our son who is serving a mission in Madagscar (yes it's a real country and not just a movie). It was a little awkward because it was the first time we had been able to speak to him since he left the middle of April. I got all excited to get a call from him on Mother's Day, but he was still in the MTC and they can't call from there.....I was soooo sad! So 8 1/2 months later we got to talk to him. He was still struggling with some of the language but loved the areas he had served in.
So, then on Dec 26th I got to speak with Chase again. I was in heaven! He is doing great! I miss him so much. We laughed, made plans for when he comes home on April 3rd!!!! We encouraged him to finish with a bang!
Now I think that I am the trunky one. I have been happy and sad, up and down....like a cheesy
Frank Sinatra song. Nothing against Ol' Blue Eyes! But I have run the gamut of emotions after talking to him. One of the great things about him coming home....no more $200 phone bills for a one hour phone call! YIPPEE!!!
But I tell you what people, I wouldn't have him anywhere else! He has matured and learned a lot about himself. I have learned a lot about him too. I have learned that he is a very patient person even when times are tough. I have learned that he doesn't care what has happened in the past, he just looks to the future and has hope in spite of the challenges he has faced. He is an inspiration to me. That's my boy!
I firmly believe there is a correlation to allergies and stupid people. Well at least in my case there is. I am allergic to stupid people. True story. I haven't actually been tested with one of those "scratch" tests they do on your back, but I get the same symptoms when I am around stupid people.
You know those symptoms, your ears get hot and turn red. Your skin gets red and itchy, you sometimes feel like you are going to vomit. Those kind of feelings. That's how I know I am allergic to stupid people. I have a sister who has the same symptoms when she is around stupid people too.
This same sister was going in for surgery and was asked by a nurse what allergies she had. Sheri started to rhyme off her allergies and ended with her last allergy: stupid people. The nurse, not having a sense of humor, asked what happened when she was around them. My sister's response was, "It's happening right now."
Stupidity comes in all forms, like yesterday when I got a phone call from some organization wanting me to contribute to them for the poor for Christmas. Ummmm.....yesterday was the 26th. Christmas is over! Either this was a scam or they are getting quite the jump start for next year! I explained that I give donations through my church for those in need. He was NOT happy with that explanation and questioned IF the money was really getting to the people who were in need. My rash came up in full force with him, and so did some choice words! He hung up quickly.
Another example was when (now my son will kill me for this) my son had to go to speech therapy for a lisp. He was in second grade and still had a thrust so he did not pronounce his "s" words properly. They came out more like "th". I met with the speech pathologist who had the personality of a wet dishrag. I was trying to lighten the moment when she asked if we were aware of my son's speech problem. So I'm thinking to myself, DUH! I'm not deaf! I can hear that he can't pronounce the letter "s". But what I said with a smile on my face is, "We've tried teasing him and taunting him but it just hasn't worked, he still lisps". (SILENCE) Not a crack of a smile from her. Nothing but a blank stare. I was never called in for another conference again.
I am recovering from the effects of a stupid person now. I take things to heart, and this person is not only a stupid person but a mean person and has attacked my integrity. Sometimes the effects of being exposed to a stupid person are so extreme that I get laid up for a while. That is what has happened this time. It affects not only me but my family.
I am working on it, I have a great husband who loves me in spite of me. I have 2 great sons! They are awesome boys and very supportive. But I want more for them. I want them to have more of me available. I don't want the effects to be so negative in the future....especially from the meanness. There is no reason to be down right mean.
Most blogs I read are so upbeat and happy. We put our best face forward and it does help for the most part when we have a bad day to read uplifting things. But sometimes, it would be nice just to see that other people struggle too. I have struggled. Sometimes I have struggled a lot. Stupid people don't make it any easier. But, they are people too. And sometimes, I am that stupid person. Sorry Drew. Sorry Chase. Sorry Broc. Sorry if I have caused any of you out there to break out in a rash because of something stupid I have done.
I am a HUGE fan of WICKED the musical. I have read the book, but I just LOOOOVE the music. I have never seen it. But I will be seeing it in April up in Salt Lake City! At least I hope I will be seeing it in April up in Salt Lake City. The problem is, I haven't received my tickets yet. I've paid for them, that is my credit card has been charged for four tickets to the matinee for an obscene amount. I better get my tickets!!! Did I mention that my husband worked the phone and the internet ALL DAY to get me these tickets? When I say ALL DAY...I mean ALL DAY! Five hours of his life was dedicated to get me 4 tickets that are not together to see Wicked! I am soooo excited!!! Now, I know, that my sister Sheri could care less, she's seen it on Broadway a gajillion times! Alright not a gajillion, only a million times. But I get to FINALLY see WICKED!!!! As long as I get my tickets!!!!
So, my other sister who lives up in Salt Lake is going with me. I guess during the show we will just wave to each other or something, since none of the seats are together. The only way I could have had seats together is if I went to a Sunday showing. So, this was the scenario. I drop by my hubby's office to see if he got the tickets yet or not. He's wiping tears from his eyes because he's been on the internet so long waiting in queue to buy tickets as well as being on hold to purchase them. I hand him a tissue and remind him that I have had to be on the computer for eight hours before to get our son into a session of EFY because their was a "problem" with the computer system at BYU and it kept kicking me off. He tells me how expensive it is going to be for four tickets and I remind him how much we just spent on football tickets to attend two BYU games and his mouth stops moving.
So back to the Sunday show. The operator/cashier/scalper of the WICKED tickets comes on the phone while I am in his office (he's on a break of course and this by NO means affected his job performance this day) and asks what day we want to attend...yadda...yadda...yadda. Well we come to find out that the only show that has seats together is the Sunday show. My dear husband looks at me and asks if I want to go to a Sunday show. Bless his huge heart. He is willing to risk his soul to eternal damnation and hellfire for me! How cute is that? Oh wait, no he isn't, he just wants to get out of his bishopric meeting!!! For a split second I actually considered NOT going at all. I would be sitting by myself. Who goes to a show and sits by themselves? Who would I sing to? I have wanted to go since the first time I listened to the soundtrack on one of our trips to Disneyland.
I, April, being of quite an unsound mind, was considering canceling the whole thing! All that effort, all those hours my hubby spent on the computer and on the phone wasted because I can't sit by him or my sister or........oh wait a minute! FOUR TICKETS IT IS!!!!!
I called my sister to tell her the news! She wants one ticket, ok, I have one extra ticket! My son will want to go! After all, his father has spent FIVE WHOLE HOURS on the phone and on the internet (and doing his job) getting these tickets!!! He threw a fit earlier this year when we made plans to see Les Miserables without him for a second time. Of course he would want to see WICKED! Nope. Not interested.
Now it was back to my sister. Was she sure that her husband didn't want to go to Wicked with us?
According to my sister my BIL did NOT want to go and for the life of him, he could not figure out why my husband WOULD go with me! That would be a NO for my BIL!
But with all of this said, being a HUGE fan of the music, wanting to see the play, reading the book and the sequel Son of a Witch, I just don't think that I should look like a witch. Unfortunately, that is exactly what happened to me at my brother's wedding almost 2 years ago. True story. My brother married a wonderful girl that he met over the internet. At the time she lived in the Philippines. They communicated back and forth for a while and he visited her a couple of times. Their relationship became more serious over the years and they married almost two years ago and in a couple of months I will be an Auntie again! YEAH!!! Anyways, there was a casualty just before the wedding.....ME! I have proof. The make-up artist must have heard that I was a huge fan of WICKED. Just because I LOVE WICKED doesn't mean I want to go to a wedding looking like Elphaba. I wanted to stand up and sing....
Did that really just happen?
Did he actually paint them green?
These eyes I've tried
To suppress or hide
Is a tragedy that could
Help me meet the Wizard
If I close them tight
Will he scream with fright?
I know I wanted to....my sisters just laughed. Isn't that what sisters are for? Oh and they are for mocking as well. They mocked me and then they asked the man who did my makeup to fix it.
So when I see WICKED, (my tickets better get here quickly--it's been over a month) I won't look like Elphaba. I won't sing in the ear of the person sitting next to me whoever it may be. I will wave to my husband, my sister and to whoever is the lucky fourth person to accompany us and sit alone. But, whoever it is, they will have fun on the ride over! Rider beware. We do mock!
No matter how hard I try, no matter what techniques I have put into practise, I still manage at the end of the day to come off sounding like a sailor. No offense to the navy or to those who have served our country. I'm looking more like the pirate......AAARRRRRGGGGG!!!!
This week was a VERY stressful week at work. I was on a committee that had been planning the Christmas party for the entire city staff and a guest. We estimated that we would have over 400 people at this dinner/program. The "powers that be" did not want a choir singin Christmas carols as part of the program....not at this Christmas party. They didn't want to spend any more money than they spent for the last Christmas party, when they staff was half of what it is this year. Yet, "they" wanted it bigger and better. So, our committee met weekly to pound out the details, find a caterer, figure out how to fit these people in one gymnasium of our Community Center, and decorate. SIGH......all without one cuss word.....I think not.
So, this week was not a good week in my vocabulary. I have tried to stop using naughty words. I have thought of my favorite scripture, I have hummed my favorite tune, I have tried to replace the naughty words with less naughty words. But to no avail. Just give me one bad driver, one spilled cup of soda on the bills, an uncooperative computer or printer, or an encounter with a stupid person and LOOK OUT! The explicatives will fly!!
I have been dealing with this problem since the 6th grade! What hope do I have especially when sometimes it just feels good to let loose. Now don't get me wrong. I don't cuss out people. I don't swear at my husband or boys......out loud. But the dog, she has had an earful a time or two! What is a person to do? More importantly, what am I to do? Honestly, I won't do anything. When I was faced with my own mortality a few months back, and had to discuss the "what if's", I decided then to be true to who I really am. This is who I am. I was not going to make changes just because my life may be unexpectedly shortened. In a way, I felt that was being dishonest to myself and also I felt it was being insincere. I would just stay who I was, the good, the bad, and the cursed.
When I am under stress, it is not pretty, but I say words that aren't appropriate. Should I stop saying them? Probably. But I should be doing things a lot more important than not using naughty words. So to all my friends who get this......AHOY MATEY!!!
Seriously, I love this time of the year! The lights on the homes, the trees seen from the windows, the decorations all around. Unfortunately, our home will be the scrooge home. Yes, it is so! We have no room for a tree. No room for a tree you say? Everyone has room for a tree! Nope, we don't! We live in a construction zone. It is true. Our home has been under re-construction for 26 months now. At one point we moved out for 15 months and stayed with friends the disrepair of the house was so bad. To put it nicely, we bought a lemon. It would have been easier to level the house and start from scratch, but we didn't have the money to do that! We are just doing what we can. Little by little. Room by room. Day by day. When friends or coworkers ask, "When will 'they' be done working on the house"? I respond by saying, " 'They' is Drew and he works on the house in his spare time". So, at this point, we are back in our home and have been for 11 months now. We have 4 1/2 months left to get this house done before our son returns home from his mission and needs a room to sleep in. (The room that everything is stored in right now.) I am sad that there will be no tree in our home this year, so I will enjoy looking at the beautifully decorated trees of my friends. I may not have a tree in my home this year but I will have two wonderful men (my hubby and 17 year old son) to share the Christmas season with, tree or no tree. And, on Christmas day, I will get to hear the sound of the third man in my life who is serving a mission in Madagascar. Although, the Christmas tree adds to the festivities and is a reminder to us of the season it is not the true meaning of Christmas. I will look forward to next year when I will have a whole and safe house to live in thanks to my awesome husband and his hard work. We will have a tree up next year, as a reminder of what the spirit of Christmas is about. But seriously, even without a tree, our Christmas will be great because we have a family that loves each other and respects each other and we as a family love the Lord with all of our hearts. Isn't that what Christmas is all about? Seriously?
I have been absent from my new love......of blogging. It is has been fun to keep up with friends and meet new people.
I have posted a picture and a recipe for pumpkin roll....YUMMY!!! For all you who have no idea what it is....I thought everyone in Utah new what a pumpkin roll was. Isn't that a prerequisite taught at every Relief Society Homemaking....or whatever it is they are calling it these days! (My brain is sugared out from too much pumpkin roll....sorry! =) )
So.....yesterday morning I readied myself for the 4 hour trip to the Salt Lake Area from my home. My sister was taking me to the Festival of Trees. The Festival of Trees has been going on for 38 years and this program raises money for Primary Children's Medical Center by auctioning off Christmas trees that have been donated for auction. This year there were over 300 regular trees and I'm sure that many center pieces and wreaths combined. But, before beginning my journey to my sister's home, I had to interrupt my husband's day at work. Oh yes, blonde me, left my only set of car keys in the car that my husband drove to work! And just as a side note.....this is NOT the first time I've done this to him either! This is probably the third call he has received from me while he is at work because I forgot my keys in his car. Poor Drew!!! But he is so patient, he doesn't get his panties in a knot! He excuses himself from work and drives 20 miles back home, smiles as he enters our home and helps me load the car. No harsh words, no "that was stupid", nothing about how "put out" he is because he has to drive back and forth twice now! WOW!!! I better lay off Mr. 2 Pie Man!!! hee hee hee!!! The drive was pretty uneventful, I of course was on the lookout for cool road signs.....run down and ready for the burn pile....YES! Cool, not so much! I will post what I have later. I got this idea from Crash's site (I think).....she was had mentioned in her writing or a comment that she thought there would be cool road side signs from St George to SLC....not so much! Apparently that thoroughfare needs a "sprucing up" committee. It's pretty pathetic in some spots.
Back to the reason why I am here in SLC......for the Festival of Trees. Everyone needs a reason to oooohhh and aaaahhhh. My sister and I got to do that a couple of times last night at some of the over 300 trees we saw. A few of the trees or groupings got more of a gasp. (As my sister pointed out, one got a shudder of horror.....picture to be posted later). One tree made of blown glass went for $26,000. The lights flashed to the sound of the music that it played. Another tree I saw was also very touching as it was a tribute to the father of a dear friend of mine. Her father passed away unexpectedly earlier this year. All in all I'm sure they raised a lot of money for Primary Children's Medical Center last night, even though the stockings and stocking stuffers that my sister made didn't go in the first bidding process. (And they were NOT shudder worthy!)
I have said my good-byes to my nephews, they are off to school, and now I must get dressed and ready myself for my trip home.....I have work tomorrow....SHOOT!!! WHERE ARE MY KEYS?!?!?!?!?!?
WOW! What an ordeal! Who would have thought that cooking for 3 people could take ALL day. Well, if you know me, you know how much I just LOVE to cook AND bake (note the sarcasm). But, what is Thanksgiving without turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, rolls and a veggie (for good measure), not to mention the desserts!!!!
So, first thing this morning the preparations began! Drew began slicing and dicing the celery, apples and onions for the stuffing. I began clearing counter space for all of the food that would be donning it (I found my camera charger!). Broc's duties included sweeping and mopping.
In this age of technology, Thanksgiving wishes started coming in the form of text messages from friends. The turkey was in the oven cooking and the aroma spreading through the house. AHHHH......the anticipation!
Earlier this week, seeing that I am not a baker, it's not that I can't do it, it's that I choose not to do it. It's a looooong story! Anyhoooo, a coworker said that she was making and selling pumpkin rolls. WHAT?!?!?!? Could this be? Real homemade treats for Thanksgiving without having to prepare them? "I'll take three!", I told her. "But they are this big," she said holding her hands out to a length that made no sense to me since apparently I have no concept of length. And three. My coworker cut them in half making 6 total. They filled a very large rotisserie pan. This pan would have dwarfed my 14 pound turkey had I roasted the turkey in it! When she brought the 3 pumpkin rolls (cut in half) to me I though someone else had ordered some as well. These couldn't ALL be mine!!!! Yep, they were. How were we going to eat all of these for Thanksgiving?
The next day I sent Drew to get the "odds and ends" for our Thanksgiving dinner. You know, the celery, apples, onions, cranberries, potatoes......I get home to find not one but TWO pies from Costco on the kitchen counter. Did I mention there are only three of us at home? So now we have 5 1/2 pumpkin rolls (I opened one at work and shared!) and TWO pies to eat after dinner!!! What was he thinking?????
Back to the dinner......I may not like to cook, but I can cook. Give me a simple recipe and I can pull it off. I just don't like to cook. An even loooooonger story! hahahaha!!! So, imagine my joy when, I have everything timed out, to the minute, and the rolls decide not to rise.....ok, we can live without rolls....we've got TWO pies!!! Then, the mashed potatoes are done too early. I overstuffed the turkey, so it's taking longer. Now, the mashed potatoes are dry...NICE! Lastly, the gravy, although nice and tasty, is runny......sigh......at least we have TWO pies!!!! I wonder if anyone at work will care if the potatoes are dry or the rolls are burned on the bottom? Tomorrow will tell!
Needless to say we have tons of leftovers!!! How blessed we are!!! Next year I will be cooking in my new kitchen and enjoying Thanksgiving with our returned missionary and listening to all of his capers from his mission! How truly blessed we are!!!!
It is here! I have been asked many times by many people (ok, 4 or 5) what's your blog address? "What's a blog?" I ask. So, over the months I have received various invites to family members' blogs and friends' blogs and voila! Here is my blog. Simple, yes. But, I'm sure once I am more comfortable with it, it will grow. Thanks to all who encouraged me to start a blog....one more thing to do on the computer =)
This is our family right now. We have one son who is in Madagascar serving a mission. He has 5 months left. Our other son pictured here is a senior. Our time with him is winding down. This blog is for these men in my life. I love them with all of my heart! They mean more to me than words can describe....sometimes I am speechless (in a bad way too). That is all part of life. At the end of the day we love each other for each other, good, bad and not so pretty!
I am the mother of two awesome boys! One has recently returned from a mission for our church in Madagascar. Soon to be a Freshman in college.
The other is a Freshman in college and will be venturing out on a mission in the next year.
They have both brought me a lot of happiness and made me laugh! I am so blessed to have them in my life! They have had to go through things in life that some would feel are not fair, but they have not complained. They go through life with a smile on their face. They are a great example to me.
I am also the wife of an amazing man!!! Seriously! He does it all! He complains even less than my boys!!! I could not ask for a better companion than him. He is a great example to his sons. He works hard all week long, comes home and begins his work on our home and then continues to serve at our church. Yet, I do not feel neglected. He is there when I need him. He brings me lunch every day at work, he helps out at home, he loves me for me....what more can a woman ask for? Yep, I got him!!!
Can he be serious? Nope!
Our freshman....in college.
The Hubby (and his pal)
His only flaw....he doesn't know how to smile...hahahaha
OUR FAVORITE THINGS......
In the summer we LOVE to go to Lake Powell with my sister and her family. We have a blast there! There is never a dull moment whether it be from the kids, storms, bats or giant mice. We are constantly entertained by something or someone! Here are a few of my favorite memories.....
The Balloon Launcher
Many items were launched in 2005. Grapes, rotten tomatoes, live fireworks. ( I was the target for the fireworks.)
It was higher than it looked, especially for a scaredy cat like me. And by the way, I told Drew I was jumping, but didn't. He did!
My favorite place to be on a hot day! With one of my favorite nephews! (When he's in a good mood that is!)
A fun past time...watching others get their butt kicked on the molecule! Oh yeah!!!
Yep...the ride of my life....it hurt!
Bracing for the Storm
B-I-L and Hubby being pelted by the rain. The toys had to be secured!
The Many Faces of Hubby
Ok...he doesn't have many faces, in fact it's like pulling teeth to get a real smile out of him, so this makes this shot great!