Sunday, September 30, 2012

Dumb Dogs

Emily is babysitting 2 dogs for one of our neighbors.  On Friday, I went with her to help get the dogs in the garage for the night.  I had about 30 minutes before I needed to be at the library, to help with a fundraiser.  We rode our bikes down the road... I had a flat tire, but did not have time to pump it up, so struggled down the road.  We got there, and realized that Emily had forgotten the key, so I waited as she rode back home and got it.  We got the dogs, removed the shock collars, put them inside their kennel in the garage, and as I took off the leash, one dog bolted out and ran off.  She went to the neighbors house .  I took off after the dog while Em found some treats to lure her back.  I called the boys to come and help because the dog did NOT want to be caught.  I chased her all through the neighbors back yard and garden.  Em brought the treat and the dog inched closer and closer, then as I snatched for her, she grabbed the treat and darted away.  She ran to another neighbors house, and some of their kids came out to help, the dog thought it was a great game!  I went back to the owner's house and got the other dog on a leash, thinking it would help to lure the runaway back.  The dog ran to another house, and met their new dog.  I was hot, sweaty, had thorns in my feet, and was getting late for my appointment.  Luckily the new dog in the neighborhood did not like our runaway, and scared her.  She ran back to me and the leashed dog.  Emily threw herself over the dog, and we managed to get a leash on her.  It took about 25 minutes of chasing to catch the stupid creature, and we were dirty, sweaty, and late for my appointment by the time I made the 15 minute drive to town.  Now I can laugh as I see how the situation must have looked, but I was really angry at that dumb dog!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Yellowstone Fun

Today was a free-entrance day at Yellowstone Park, so we took the 2-hour drive and headed for adventure.  We saw a few buffalo and elk, and some geese.  We drove to the Old Faithful area and went to the cafeteria for lunch.  It was funny to see our next door neighbor there!  After eating, we started on a short hike to an overlook of Old Faithful.  We didn't get to the top before it erupted, and we missed most of it.  We had a nice little hike, and ended up at "Solitude Geyser".  This was a little geyser that erupts about every 5 minutes, and is only a few feet high.  No one else was there, and we sat and watched it twice.  Then back toward civilization and had fun looking at some small geysers and pools.  Then we sat and waited to see Old Faithful erupt.  We waited... and waited..... finally we decided to leave because I had to get back home for a meeting.  It erupted as we were pulling out of the parking lot, so we missed it again!  Oh well... it was a fun, relaxing getaway for a few hours!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Bugs on the Door

The past few days there have been LOTS of box elder bugs around my front door.  Yuck!  Where did they come from?  There are no box elder trees anywhere close that I know of.  Why are they congregating on my front step?  Are they planning a mass invasion when the door opens?  I just don't know what is going on!  I sprayed some bug-defense spray around the door, steps, and foundation today... we'll see how the situation looks tomorrow. 

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Thursdays Free Days

My schedule is rather full at the moment.  Saturdays are spent with the family.... doing yard work, house work, outings, etc... Sundays are full of meetings, planning, church, study, and visits.  Monday, Wednesday, and Friday are school days, where Jacob and I go to campus and have classes, do homework and school projects.  Tuesdays are my Relief Society days where I have meetings, do visits, phone calls, plan, go to the temple, visit teach, etc.  Thursdays are MY days!  (Sort of ) This is when I do the shopping, run errands, work in the garden, cook for the coming week (at least a few things), and sometimes I spend a little time reading or take a nap.  I look forward to Thursdays!  During the rest of the time I try to fit in things like laundry, house work, paying bills, helping with kids homework, keeping in contact with friends and family, cooking, etc... and of course I try to spend as much time with my family as possible.  It sometimes overwhelms me to try to keep it all going, but I am also happiest when I am busy.  Anyway... tomorrow is Thursday, and I am really looking forward to it! 

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Rain in the Night

Finally!  It rained a bit last night, and also the night before.  The surface of the ground was wet, but not much more.  Still, after a long, hot, smoky summer, it was wonderful and refreshing.  I am hoping the rain will help a bit with some of the fires that are so smoky, and my yard and garden sure look better after a bit of rain!  I also love the sound of rain in the night... it makes me feel cozy and comfortable to be dry and warm in my bed, while outside it is cleaning and watering the earth. 

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Thumb Nail Thoughts

Back at the beginning of June I slammed my thumb in the car door.  It was not very fun and hurt like blazes for a week or so.  My nail immediately turned black and swelled up.... not a pretty sight.  Finally, today, the last part of that crushed, mangled thumb nail came off.  Only part of the new one has grown, underneath, and the exposed end of my thumb is super-sensitive.  It makes me realize how miraculous each and every part of our body is.  It amazes me that as damaged as my thumb was, it is almost completely healed... the nerves that are so sensitive, have repaired themselves, and the nail that is supposed to cover them performs the important function of protecting them.  I also miss the use of my nail, as a tool, to grip, perforate, and scrape... our bodies, even the smallest part, are just so amazing! 

Saturday, September 22, 2012


Last night the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra put on a performance here in Rexburg.  We all got dressed up in our church clothes and went to listen.  When I saw the program, I thought "this is going to go w-a-a-a-y too long.  However, I was pleasantly surprised that it was just long enough to hear a good variety of songs, and still keep the audience interested.  It was especially fun to see them get pretty animated during an African spiritual.... there was hand clapping, swaying, and even some yelling and yipping going on.  Not the usual stuff you see from the Tabernacle Choir.  Anyway, I was grateful for the opportunity for my family to go to this performance together. I am often amazed at the blessings we have found by moving here. 

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Good Trade

Today I took some zucchini, yellow squash, and tomatoes to a friend.  She doesn't grow a garden so I thought she could use some of my over-abundance.  I am getting tired of canning after quite a few batches of plain tomatoes, two big batches of salsa, lots of green beans, and some jam.  I have been dehydrating the zucchini and yellow squash into "chips" that are pretty good.  I did spaghetti sauce today.  Anyway... I didn't want to do any more preserving for a few days, so I gave away my produce.  It turns out my friend has fruit trees and she gave me a big box of pears, and another of apples.  The pears aren't ripe yet, so I don't have to can them right away, and I am gong to dry the apples, so can just work on that a  bit at a time.  I was happy to get the fruit, since my trees didn't produce anything this year. By the way, do any of you want parsley?  I have dried more than I will use in the next while (probably years), but there is still a bunch left in the garden. I also have dill for anyone who wants it.  And chive plants..... they are taking over my herb garden!  I'm starting to look forward to the end of gardening season! 

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Gangum Style

It seems like everywhere I turn I am hearing the "Gangum Style" song.  I don't even know what it means, but it is really catchy.  At the same time, I am wondering how many more parodies are going to made, because I am getting tired of hearing it so much.  I wonder why certain songs, tv shows, sayings, etc... catch on, while others that are just as good (maybe better) get overlooked.  This is something my sociological mind sometimes ponders.

Monday, September 17, 2012

savvy shopping

I am a pretty frugal person.  I don't get a kick out of spending money.... in fact I really enjoy saving it.   Today I went to Walgreens for a few things.  By watching the circular and matching coupons to the sales they had, I walked out with 2 bottles of Aussie shampoo, a box of crackers, a package of Dentek tooth flossers, and 3 boxes of fruit snacks for a total of $5.08.  My receipt told me that I saved 74% on todays purchases, plus I got $3 in coupons good for anything I choose on my next purchase.  I wish there were sales and coupons for things like power bills and braces!  I am NOT an "extreme couponer".... I don't want to spend a huge amount of time and effort to get free things.... they are not free if they are costing me my time and energy.  I just think it is silly to pay more than necessary if I can save significantly by being organized and observant. 

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Noise Pollution

I just enjoy the quiet.  Many people, (my husband included) feel most comfortable with "stuff" going on.  This includes such things as music, tv, internet, podcasts, etc....  I usually "tune out" the input from these things  It's not a conscious choice, in fact I don't even realize I'm doing it.  I don't like the feeling of "disconnect" between my thoughts and the things going on around me that happens when I am paying attention to these types of things.  In fact it makes me almost nervous when I can't hear and tune in to what is going on around me.  Is this strange?  I hardly ever turn on the radio or put in music, watch tv, or have any type of electronic noise going when I am home alone.  Sometimes Tony will comment about the things he is watching or listening to, and I am rarely able to respond with anything other than "sorry, I wasn't listening".  I don't mind that we have different tastes in the "noise" category, because I love Tony and am able to tune out the stuff I don't enjoy.  I just think this is unusual to have such an affinity for quiet, since most people turn on the "noise" a lot more than I do.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

"I'm not perfect"

One of my kids said tonight "I'm not perfect".  I think that this is obvious.  None of us is perfect.  We are all working at getting better, kinder, more obedient, wiser, etc...  I think that saying "I'm not perfect" is often an excuse for not trying harder.  It's a way of letting go of responsibility for our own actions... nobody's perfect, so why try?  I hope I can teach my children that they don't have to be perfect, but they are responsible for making themselves better.  I hope I can remember this for myself also. 

Thursday, September 13, 2012


Over the past few days, several family members have commented about the fact that I have not made bread for quite some time.  For a few years, I never bought bread, but always had home-made.  Lately, I have been buying bread at the store.  We don't like it as much, and we don't go through it as quickly as the home baked stuff.  Sometimes I feel overwhelmed with all the responsibilities I have taken on, and I let some of the less-important things go.  Bread is one of those things.  I like making bread though, and hopefully will do so more often in the future.  Baking bread is definitely a smell that I love having in my home!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Master Gardener

Tonight was the closing social for the Master Gardener program that I have been working on since last February.  I spent about 50 hours in classes, then another 40 hours of community service.  I spent my service time answering questions at a booth at the local farmer's market and helping with a gardening conference.  It was really fun and I learned a lot.  Tonight I received my certificate so now I am an official Master Gardener!  Yay!!!!!  I also won first prize in the "best vegetable" contest with a monster cabbage that I grew.  I  won a basket full of garden stuff, and Tony won a door prize... a lily!  He'll probably have me take care of it. :)  I enjoyed the evening and am glad to mark this experience as "accomplished" on my bucket list. 

Tuesday, September 11, 2012


I am continually amazed at how our attitude affects us, and the people around us.  When any member of my family is having a "bad" attitude, it rubs off on everyone and we all change the way we act.  Likewise, when someone is cheerful and optimistic, it makes those around them happier.  I worked in the bookstore again today, and most of the people just went through the line without much response to me, but a few seemed really grumpy, and I felt myself getting defensive and "protective" against them.  There were others who told me what a good "traffic director" I was and said things like "thank you" or "have a good day".  I am working really hard at being the one in control of my attitude, and not letting the moods and reactions of others determine what I feel.  It is not easy, and often I have to pretend to not let things get to me.  I figure that if I practice the way I want to react, and practice being the kind of person I want to be, some day I will actually be that way! 

Monday, September 10, 2012

College Kid

Today was Jacob's first day of college!  Yikes!  Where did the time go?  I was very proud of myself for dropping him off, and not walking to class with him.  Then I had the same feelings that I had 15 years ago, dropping him off at pre-school for the first time.... worry, excitement, fear, hope, and the almost overwhelming urge to run back and bring him back home with me.  Luckily I had to run an errand and get to my own class... so he was saved from the embarrassment of having his mom come check on him.  I was glad to get a call from Tony a half hour later, telling me that he had walked by Jacob's class and taken a peek in to see how it was going.  :)  So, Jacob and I are both into the college class mode.  This will be my busiest semester yet, and I am praying for the ability to juggle all of my commitments and keep my sanity. 

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Sunday Nap

Today I turned off everything... my phone, my family, my church responsibilities, etc... and took a lo-o-o-n-g nap. It was so good for me!  I sometimes take a quick snooze for 15 minutes to a half hour, to ease a headache or just refresh myself, but every once in a long time I will take a real nap.  I think I slept for 4 hours today!  I am grateful to my family for letting me have this quiet, resting time to just sleep. Now I can go out and take care of my responsibilities again.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Glad to be done

After working full time for the past 3 days, I am tired, sick, and behind on everything.  I lost my voice by the end of the first day, and it hurts to talk.  My feet feel bruised and swollen.  I have a cold that makes my head feel like it is stuck in a metal garbage can!  My house is dirty, and my kids have spent way too much time in front of electronic screens.  I can not imagine going to work full time, and also keeping my home, family, and church calling under control!  For all those women who can, and do, make it work, you have my sympathy and admiration!!!  I am also so grateful for the work that Tony does to provide for us!!!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Directing Traffic

Today I worked all day at the campus bookstore.  Usually I work at a cash register, and take money from folks buying books and supplies.  Today they had me doing something different.... directing traffic.  Basically there is one main waiting line, and from there I am supposed to send people to the registers.  Ideally I try to have 2 or 3 people waiting at each register.  This system keeps things moving pretty quickly and prevents "traffic jams" in the store.  However there is no one to explain to all the buyers that they need to get into the main line, so people kept jumping ahead and "cutting" into the shorter register lines.  I lost my voice from shouting "the line starts over here" all day.  Those who have been on campus before have learned the "system" and know it is much more fair and efficient than just having everyone jumping into lines, but there are a lot of first-timers on campus making it much more difficult than it needs to be.  I am grateful for the good attitudes and friendly chatting with most of the customers, and I choose to not let the few stinkers get to me. 

On another note, we got Jacob his own cell phone today.  We need to be able to reach him, and have be able to reach us while he is at school.  I am excited for him... I already called him... from the living room..... while he was in the kitchen!  :)

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Freezer meals

Today was a cooking day.  My sister came over and we got 10 meals put together and ready to go!  I am so excited to have some dinners in the freezer.  I will be working all day for the next 3 days, then back to school on Monday.  It will be a little crazy getting my new schedule under control, so I am happy to have stuff I can just toss in the oven and heat up on those nights when I get home late!  I can even have the kids or Tony heat them up and I can come home to a nice meal. Thanks sis! 

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Today's Harvest

Here is the stuff I picked in my garden today.  I am sure enjoying all the fresh vegetables.  I wish I had more fruit... all the blossoms got frozen this year.  I had 2 pears, but they got blown off the tree.  Maybe next year will be better for the fruits.  Anyway, I am starting to look forward to the end of garden season.  It is fun to pick and store, but it is also really time consuming and I am already excited to try doing a few things differently next year to have an even better garden!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Temple Trip

Today was Labor Day, so we decided to celebrate by getting away from our labors and driving down to Brigham City.  We went to the temple open house.  It was a beautiful day, and a nice drive.  It was very crowded at the temple and we spent about 3 hours there, all totaled.  It was well worth it to be able to take our whole family to see the newest temple that has been completed.  I really enjoyed the "peach blossom" theme, but most of all just being there with my family was wonderful!

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Beet cake

Tonight some friends brought over a chocolate beet cake to share with us.  I was rather skeptical... sounds strange.  It was very delicious! She told me it is made with canned beets, applesauce, wheat flour and coconut oil.  I am a big believer in eating healthily.  I am not a fan of diets, supplements, or "wonder" foods.  I think that if our diet consists mostly of whole, natural foods, and we eat a large variety, we will be healthy and strong.  That's not to say that I don't enjoy a few Cheetos or chocolate chip cookies occasionally.... I just try to take it easy on the junk, and save it for special occasions, while making my every day eating consist mostly of things that I grow myself, or that consist of fruits, veggies, whole grains, and healthy proteins.  I definitely have room for improvement, but I just don't think that spending a bunch of money, or a couple of months eating nothing but broccoli will improve my body or health over the long run. 

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Old videos

Yesterday and today my kids wanted something new to watch, so I pulled out the old VHS family video tapes.  We still have a VCR, so we have spent some time watching ourselves.  It has been so fun to see myself, Tony, and the kids over the years!  I am amazed at the progress and growth each of us has made and the experiences that have helped us to become who we are.  We seldom take videod anymore, and it kind of makes me sad.  We need to work on converting these old video tapes to a digital format before they deteriorate and we lose them..... one more project to add to the list!  I am grateful that we have technology that helps us to preserve our memories because so much of what I watched seemed totally "new" to me!