Monday, December 31, 2012

Is the mail here yet?

Zac's mission call finally came on Saturday, but he won't let me put it on this blog.  He said he will let me tell you in a week.

(A week later:  He is going to Florianopolis, Brazil, on May 22.)

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Pillowcases from Jolene, 1977

Dear Jo,

I bet you are surprised to see these pillowcases.  Remember, you made a set for each of your 5 roommates at Heritage Halls the Christmas of 1977.  If I remember right, you probably sewed sets of yellow check, blue check, pink check, red check, and green check, those were the colors available about that time.

(I wonder if Toby, Marie, Dianne, or Joan still have theirs?)

I want to tell you about a strange coincidence that happened with these two pillowcases.

A number of years ago, I caught myself using one of these more and more, as my preferred pillowcase.  Sure, I used others when this one was in the laundry, but I always got this one back again.  The fabric has been washed a billion times and is SO SOFT against my face.

Then, after Seth was gone on his mission, and then married, one day I was at his apartment and discovered that he feels the same way about the other pillowcase!  I had no idea he had taken it on his mission and was still using it.  His wife is not thrilled, because it doesn't go with her other linens, but she hides it under other pillows when she makes the bed.  He won't give it up!

When we were at their house on Wednesday, I put the two pillowcases together and took this photo.  But then I took my pillowcase back home.  They will probably never be together again.

So, Jo, I just wanted you to know that your Christmas gift still lives on, 35 years later.

Thank you so much!

your old BYU roommate,

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Isaac's tree swing

Rachel said that all Isaac wanted for his birthday was to make a rope swing in one of our trees.  He chose one down by the pond, and worked on it a couple of different days, and got it finished on his birthday.

 Thomas, Rachel, and Hannah watching Isaac climb the tree.

 Isaac, getting ready to swing off of the tree.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Boy Scouts everywhere

This has been a very happy day. Wayne has two scout troops over here for an overnight scout campout.  There were boys and their dads everywhere!  Some putting up tents, some jumping on the trampoline, some gathering firewood and stacking it, some riding in the trailer in back of the tractor going to pick up the firewood, some cooking dutch oven meals, and for an hour or so, all of them were having a AirSoft battle in our woods.  (Look at the picture to see how much wood they cut all in one day!)

I didn't see anyone down by the pond, or swinging on the rope swing in the tree, but they will probably discover those things tomorrow.

Wayne is in heaven!  He has always wanted to be like the Stephens, and have land where the scouts could camp out.  I am so glad he finally got what he always wanted.
These are only a few of the people who are here, most are not in the picture.
This photo was taken from my sewing room window.

Our Christmas

 We gathered at Isaac and Rachel's on Dec. 21 to open presents from each other.  The five grandchildren posed for a nativity picture (with and without costumes). (Grandchild #6, Gabrielle, wasn't here.)

 On Christmas morning, the four of us posed for our annual stairway picture. Everyone else was at their own houses or at in-laws.  Our first Christmas at our new house!

I ordered this folded book from a book artist for Tara, it was the most favorite gift I gave this year.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Monday, December 24, 2012

Nativity made of hardware

This was one of my favorite nativity scenes at our stake Nativity Celebration this year.  Someone was pretty creative to have thought of it.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Not a Creature was Stirring, Not Even a Mouse

That phrase became more  understandable to me early Wednesday morning. At 3:30 am I was awakened by some loud rustling/paper rattling/chewing in the corner of our bedroom.  I realized it must be a mouse chewing through something so I woke up Wayne.  We both decided to just turn on a noisy fan and go back to sleep.

The next day we looked inside my church bag, and found the granola bar the mouse had been feasting on.  We found 8 cheap mousetraps we already had, and put peanut butter on the traps, and set them out in several places in our house.

Within 24 hours, all 8 traps had been licked clean, without killing the mouse.

So we baited them again.  Same thing.

We realized we were dealing with SuperMouse, and that we had dysfunctional mousetraps. (I think they had cost fifty cents a piece.)

So last night we went to Lowe's, bought some more high tech mousetraps (2 for $5), where the mouse goes inside the contraption to eat, and then it slams shut and squishes the mouse.  We also bought some more cheap mousetraps, TomCat brand, which were fifty cents each.

This morning the high tech mousetrap had been visited, the bait eaten, and the mouse was gone.

We reset that one and two of the cheap TomCat traps, and went to church.

When we came home, and saw that the $2.50 high tech one was tripped again, and empty again.  But there was a dead mouse in the 50 cent TomCat trap!  Hooray!  I think we just made that mouse so complacent after he ate some much peanut butter that he forgot to be careful

Our next plan is to keep baited mousetraps around for the next few days, just in case he has any friends and relatives inside here.

And then we are going to plug in those electronic high frequency mouse repellant things, and maybe no more mice will want to come.

(I need to add that Wayne carried the dead mouse out to the garbage.  He is MY HERO.)

Monday, December 17, 2012

Food for the Trek

Our stake has decided to do another youth pioneer trek in June, and yesterday Wayne was asked if he would accept the assignment to be the Quartermaster for food.  He said yes, and immediately went to work searching out websites and blogs about LDS pioneer treks.  He is all excited to spend the next five months testing out different recipes and campfire/dutch oven cooking methods so he can get the food all arranged and purchased.

He is super talented at this, and I am very sure he will do a great job.

Plus, I am SO THANKFUL that we don't have to be a Ma and Pa for a group of youth.  Hooray!

P.S. Yesterday he was released as 2nd counselor in the Young Men, but still kept his calling as Scout Master.  (He had been both.)

Sunday, December 16, 2012

New Church Calling: Nursery Leader

I have had it darn easy over the last 2 1/2 years.  I have only been a visiting teacher and the ward Preparedness Specialist for that whole time.  It was great, blogging about preparedness and doing Emergency Essentials food orders, and presenting preparedness challenges to the ward every month.

Now suddenly I am the new nursery leader!  My spoiled days are over.  (And I am still the preparedness leader as well.)

I tried to get ready for church this morning, and realized that 100% of my church clothes are dry clean only.  All at once, I have to buy a whole new wardrobe of more casual, wash-n-wear dresses.  I can't stand to think of all the snotty noses getting wiped all over my nice clothing.  Maybe I can get a big apron?  or a lab coat?  I will have to think about this.

Today on my first day,  only one kid threw up.  It was a pretty good day.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Happy Birthday Anson!

Here are some cute pictures of Anson from his birthday party yesterday.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Thomas Sowell on the Fiscal Cliff Article posted on Tuesday, December 4, 2012, entitled, "Fiscal Cliff Notes" by Thomas Sowell.

This man is a genius.  He talks about the small amount of money which will be raised by taxing the rich (and he has a great graph you can look at):

"First of all, despite all the melodrama about raising taxes on "the rich," even if that is done it will scarcely make a dent in the government's financial problems. Raising the tax rates on everybody in the top two percent will not get enough additional tax revenue to run the government for ten days.

And what will the government do to pay for the other 355 days in the year?
All the political angst and moral melodrama about getting "the rich" to pay "their fair share" is part of a big charade. This is not about economics, it is about politics. Taxing "the rich" will produce a drop in the bucket when compared to the staggering and unprecedented deficits of the Obama administration."
and he talks about "quantitative easing" (i.e. printing money):
"All the pretty talk about how tax rates will be raised only on "the rich" hides the ugly fact that the poorest people in the country will see the value of their money decline, just like everybody else, and at the same rate as everybody else, when the government creates more money and spends it.
If you have $100 and, after inflation follows from "quantitative easing," that $100 dollars will only buy what $80 bought before, then that is the same economically as if the government had taxed away one-fifth of your money and spent it."

Monday, December 3, 2012

Thanksgiving group photo

All 18 of us.  Smiley.


Saturday, December 1, 2012

Mormon Helping Hands in NYC

Here is a video about the groups of Latter-day Saints who are spending time cleaning up after Hurricane Sandy in Rockaway, New York.