Sunday, June 24, 2012

Red Flags

I'll be fifty-three in two weeks.  I have been feeling like forty-three until I hurt my foot last Thursday!  I was just trying to help my neighbor when I lost my balance and fell over the curb by the side of the road.  I knew I was in trouble when I tried to walk back to the stairs connected to my porch. The pain was a new experience for me.  I can't remember the last time I hurt so bad!  I stayed sitting on my porch for sometime trying to calm myself down in case I had broken my foot.  I was so upset I decided to continue with my yard work until it was finished even though the pain was very uncomfortable. Red flag

I finally finished my work and went inside to rest.  I thought to myself, I better take it easy so I don't make things worse.  I had Jewels go borrow the neighbors crutches and walker.  I looked like an old woman, but I didn't care.

Looking back I remember my first calling in the church after I got married and moved to Provo.  I was asked to take the RS lesson on tape to the widows and older married couples who had health challenges in the ward. Gary and I had moved into an older neighborhood with big old houses that had little apartments. There were lots of seniors who rented their little apartments to college students.

One of the sisters who had severe Osteoarthritis couldn't walk.  She had a nurse come in every other day to help her bathe.  Her husband made her meals and basically took care of all her other needs.  She was such a sweet little thing who was in a lot of pain.

Another sister was in her nineties and was living independently in her own home.  I couldn't just drop off the tape and leave every week, so I enjoyed visiting and getting to know her as well as the other seniors in the ward.  After I had my first baby they also loved it when I would bring him along.

One Sunday I was informed by the RS President to not go to a certain widows home because she had fallen and broken her hip. To my surprise it was the ninety year old widow who was very alert and pretty healthy.  Then two weeks after that I was told she had passed away suddenly.  Her fall had caused her to get pneumonia due to her not being able to move around.  It all happend so fast that I have never forgotten it.

Even though I'm not ninety I must take caution and be more careful I guess.  Look for red flags, try and remember my body isn't forty any more. I don't think I've broken my foot because I'm getting around better and the swelling has gone down.  I just look funny when I go out in public and try to walk. Then there is having to explain why I walk so weird.

My family is adjusting, they're learning to do things on their own. Which is good.  Things are a bit unorganized but that will change in time. That's what I have now is a lot of time, and I kind of like it. Maybe I'll actually get all my kids pictures and papers filed away.  This is a new pace for me, learning to slow down.  One of my many favorite songs comes to mind.

Slow down, you move to fast.
You got to make the morning last.
Just kickin down the cobble stones.
Lookin for fun and feeling groovy.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Another kind of Taco Salad

A new recipe I've been cooking a lot lately is another meal I learned from the school kitchen.  Every time we served taco salad for the kids at Sunset View Elementary I noticed the meat was cooked different.  It tasted really good but I couldn't figure out how the head cook prepared it.  Finally last month I asked her.

(Measure by the size of your family)

Brown hamburger and cut up onion
Add a can of red kidney beans (drained)
Cut up lots of fresh tomatoes
Season with chili powder in large quantities
Add salt and pepper for taste
Stir and let simmer for about fifteen minutes

It sounds simple but it sure is good over taco chips.
Then you swamp the top with lettuce, salsa, cheese and lots of sour cream.
That's the healthy part.
If you have any kind of Vinegarette in the fridge that adds an extra zip.
We use Vadalia Onion Vinegarete Salad Dressing from Sam's Club.

I cook this weekly and we still haven't gotten tired of it.
It's easy, fast, and makes a great summer meal.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012


Jen was named after a beautiful song.  GW wanted to name her Crystal, which would have sounded cool with Carlson at the end of it.  But  Jen was our first daughter and I wanted to be the one to name her.   I was so excited to have a girl having been raised with three brothers and several boy cousins.  GW also came from a family of five boys.

Shortly after Jen was born I went out and bought the Barbara Streisand CD that had the song we named her after so I could play it for her.  Her due date was June 10th, but I know Jen was anxious to come to earth so she came May 23, 1992, during the early evening.
GW and I were supposed to have a barbecue with some friends from work for the Memorial Day weekend.  The steaks were already on the grill cooking but my contractions were getting closer and closer.  By the time we made it to the hospital I was fully dilated and the nurses wanted me to start pushing.  I  think I went into shock because everything was happening so fast.  I pleaded for an epidural since my first baby was c-section.  After accidentally kicking the doctor in the ear I was given permission to have drugs.  Jen was a smaller baby, 6 lbs 2 ounces, so I didn't have to have a c-section.

Jake and Jen were fourteen months apart, they were great play mates.  The first time Jen started to cry Jacob looked up at me and started to cry.  He didn't know what to think of the new noise that was in distress.

Our first home in Provo was registered in the historical section of town and we lived by huge old Sycamore trees.  Lots of shade!

First home made Halloween costume.

Christmas Meadows camp spot.  
One summer we camped in a tent by the Snake River near Jackson Hole Wyoming.  I woke up in the middle of the night from a scratching sound on the tent.  I knew it was some kind of animal because it kept rubbing itself around the tent and making scratching noises.  It scared me so I woke up GW and Jake.  I made GW peek out to see what it was.  A skunk was getting into the garbage that I accidentally left out by our tent door.  We decided to stay calm and quiet until it finally left.  Jen slept through the entire ordeal.

First trip to Disneyland.

We moved to a bigger house in West Provo in 1996.  We signed Jake and Jen up for pitch ball and got acquainted with some of our new neighbors.

Mrs. Eldredge   Kindergarten

Jen with ConfiDance Kids.

I liked taking sleeping pictures.  Jen is wearing her snow bibs so she must have really worked hard playing in the snow, or we went sledding that day.

Harry Potter books were consumed in our home.  I remember standing in a long line with Jen to buy one of the new Harry Potter books.  Both Jake and Jen would stay up all night reading that particular book during the summer.

When Jen turned fifteen she started taking horse riding lessons near our home.  She went almost every Saturday for three years.  Then College started and she had to quit. It was a great experience!

Young Women's Camp was a summer highlight.  After camp Jen and Jess would come home singing and acting out camp songs for days.

Jen played the clarinet for seven years.  Not only did she play for all the Provo High basketball and football games, but she also played her clarinet for the musical, "Fiddler on the Roof". 

Jen loved playing clarinet and even played in the Utah Valley University Wind Symphony for two semesters before declaring a major.  We hope to pass it on to Jewels next year.

Our families favorite teacher!
Jen took lessons from Mike Carson for eleven years.  She enjoyed playing hymns in Seminary and Young Women's.

We love our Jenny!  We are so proud of her.  
She is a hard custodian worker at Dixon Middle School and is majoring in Biology at UVU.
Next birthday she is planning on going on a mission like her big brother.

Happy Birthday Jen!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012


I just finished my first read for the summer break.  It was so good that I've already started the second book.  I usually read biographies or classical, but now my top two favorite fantasy authors have the same first name. Not only that, they both live in Utah!
As I went about my days last week I couldn't stop thinking about Vin and Kelsier.  The metals that they used were a little confusing but I started to grasp how everything worked as I kept reading.

One of my favorite movies is The Lord of the Rings. The music is so beautiful and the scenery is breath taking. I've never been able to read the book but it's almost like trying to read Shakespeare and Jane Austen.  Sometimes I grasp more when I'm watching and listening.  It also helps when there's good actors and cool music.

 I can't wait for the movie Fablehaven.  That was an easier read and Muriel just happens to be my favorite witch. I dressed up as Muriel for Halloween 2010 when my job was recess guard.  I had a big rope around my neck and every time the kids would come up to me I would chew on the knots.  It was great fun!

If they ever make a movie from the book Mistborn it will probably be on the violent side.  Vin will have to be very athletic and Elend better be handsome.  It's nice to get away from the real world once in a while and escape to cities like Luthadel.

Happy reading...

Friday, June 1, 2012

Something New!

Jewels has never had her hair cut.

Every summer she would get a small trim, maybe two inches at the most.

Last year she was ready for a change but I wasn't.

Today her sister commented on how cute she would look with short hair.

We were all ready for something new, including Jewels!

Henny Penny came for moral support.

There's a smile!

It took less then an hour and for only $15.00 at Wal Mart.
The tip was a little more this time.



I think she likes it.