Tuesday, April 29, 2008

While you were out....

Athena is in Nashville attending a conference for work.
(I'm sorry, this was just too easy. I promise NEVER to do it again.)

Monday, April 28, 2008

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Making the "A" list

Four years ago when we moved into our new home I began shopping at our little neighborhood grocery store. One of the staples in our house is soy milk. Zeus prefers Silk Milk, unflavored and unsweetened. For six months I continually harassed the young dairy manager about carrying all varieties of this particular brand except for unflavored. The handsome man always smiled and assured me that they would be getting it in soon. Finally my soy milk appeared on the shelf.

Fast forward three years. We get new neighbors. After meeting the couple (yay, she was my age!) I learned that they had a son who was serving a mission in Jacksonville. A photograph confirmed that it was none other than the young man whom I had mercilessly nagged about the soy milk. He returned home ten days ago to delighted parents and family. This afternoon I will be attending church to hear him speak about his mission. Congratulations Elder on a job well done.

For the next week maybe my name will be on the "A" list, followed by a question mark I am sure. After that, back to the "I"s and comfortable anonymity.


note: The report was excellent and the church is still standing.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Helping Hands

Chris is travelling today to New Orleans, not to see the Hornets in the NBA playoffs, but to lend a helping hand to those whose lives were shattered by Katrina. His law school's spring break project is to provide legal advice to many victims who are still fighting to put their lives back together. Hey Chris, we are proud of you for donating your well-deserved break time for this worthwhile cause.

This is my kitchen pantry. I suppose there is enough food in there to feed the two of us for maybe a month or two if it became necessary.

Last week the Tribune cited a study that said "the Big One" could hit Utah at a whopping 7.4 on the scale. We live practically on top of the Wasatch Fault. Okay, that's scary. Total destruction. I'm not sure what good my measely little pantry would do when I probably couldn't even get to it, and that is assuming that I lived through the shaking! Would my can opener be accessible? Would there be power lines to carry electricity for my stove to boil the water for my mac and cheese to eat with my spoon that would have to be washed in my dishwasher and stored in the drawer that no longer existed? That is assuming that I have water in the pipes at all!

When Katrina hit a few years ago most of us thought about these questions for awhile and hopefully donated funds or supplies to help the millions of Americans who were affected. I talked often about filling those huge, empty water storage tanks that still sit empty in my garage. Occasionally Zeus reminds me of my goal to get that done and an emergency kit ready. I repeatedly tell him I will. Then I don't.

I heard the comment recently "Why should we help 'those people' when they haven't done anything to help themselves?" Well, maybe because they have nowhere to live while cleaning up the toxic debris that used to be their homes. Their government made a mess of recovery efforts (thanks FEMA). Their insurance companies are making every effort to not pay out benefits. The rest of the country forgot about them after the headlines changed.

Thank you Chris for your work and I hope you at least get a chance to get a taste of the reviving culture of New Orleans. I also hope that when the "Big One" hits there will be more like you ready to give assistance, no matter how long it takes.


Thursday, April 24, 2008

Sister D's Holiday Tuna Peanut Butter Bars (Subtitle: Audasticles)

Thank heavens for Sister Dottie. This insightful lady is a wonderful role model for anyone who is faced with folks with oversized audasticles. These people feel they have the right to pronounce judgements on things about which they know little or nothing. Since discovering her website and listening to the words of wisdom on her weekly potcasts I have realized that I am not alone. This, along with lengthy discussions with Zeus, Athena and Eris have brought some needed comfort and assurances. Thanks to all of you!

Now I think I will head to the kitchen where I will cook up those terrific Tuna Peanut Butter Bars and savor every last bite.


Monday, April 21, 2008

The Swimming Team

I would like to introduce you to four incredible women. From the left, Arlene, Elaine (aka my Mom), Mable and Joyce. The average age for these ladies is probably somewhere around 80. For more than a year I have had the pleasure of swimming with them three times a week. They arrive between 7:30 and 8:00 a.m. and spend up to two hours in the water doing exercises and chatting. The pool is an aquatherapy pool that is very warm (think bathtub temps) and inviting. Walking in the door always brings cheerful greetings and when it's time to go home there is a chorus of "have a great day" and "see you on Wednesday". Their life stories are varied and interesting. Self-pity is impossible here. Aches and pains are abundant but they all claim that these hours in the water are what keeps them going strong. And strong they are!

I started going to the pool last year to work on some knee problems. After a week I talked Mom into trying it with me. After assuring her repeatedly that she would fit right in she finally came with me and was soon hooked. She has kept it up for over a year and even says that she can tell the difference in how she feels. Three mornings a week she is there in the water when I come in from my run (or walk like today). There were bets in the family as to how long she would actually go but she has surprised us all! I'm proud of her and enjoy the time that we have together.

Of course, there are others at the pool. Karen joins us on Fridays. Marge, June, another Arlene and Pam are just a few of the other swimmers. Lately we have even had some men come on a regular basis, although this makes it tough when I want to use their dressing room because the ladies area is too crowded.
Thank you ladies for your friendship and for your cheerfulness that gets my days off to a good start!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Kid Magnets

No, not the things that decorate your refrigerator. A kid magnet is the person who walks into a room and any child that is present is instantly drawn to her as if by some magical force. Amy is our kid magnet.

Yesterday afternoon we got to spend some time with Amy. When Little Ms. Eris arrived she ran into the house and jumped up into Amy's arms. Littlest Ms. Eris also hung onto her legs until I pried them all apart. It didn't take long until the three of them disappeared. I found them in the bedroom where some serious fairy tale reading was taking place. When it was time for Eris and Co. to leave Little Ms. Eris started to cry. No, make that sob. The playtime with Amy just wasn't long enough.

On the way to meet Don, Jodi and Ryan for dinner we stopped to see Athena and her gang. Again, laughing and smiles all around. (Love the new "do", Jubee!)
Bubba even tore himself away from his adorable girlfriend (that's a story for another blog) to give her a big hug.

Five years ago Amy lived with us for about 18 months. She is Zeus' granddaughter. Even after all that time we couldn't come up with a satisfactory description for our relationship and often just told people that I was her parole officer. (Actually, that is a pretty close description!) Last year she moved to Colorado so our time with her is limited. Yesterday was wonderful and we can't wait to see her again!

Hurry back! We miss you!




Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Happy Birthday to Kara!

Today (Wednesday) is my niece Kara's birthday! Being the youngest of my mother's seven grandchildren she has always been the family's little sweetheart. No one could ever resist that contagious smile and terrific personality.

A trip to the zoo with the girls

2003 at a soccer game
Chris was added to the family in 2006. The story is that she agreed to marry him after an awesome PowerPoint presentation.
Chris and Kara in 2007Last year C and K moved to Lansing, MI where Chris is attending law school. It was a hard adjustment for Kara, but right now she is doing well, working two jobs and keeping busy learning how to quilt! Oh, she makes me a proud aunt!

Here's a big bloggy birthday hug to Kara from the Numismatist!

(You can visit her blog at Finley Functionality.)

Monday, April 7, 2008


I grew up in the days of "Hairspray". I don't think I'll ever get used to this.


Thursday, April 3, 2008

Seeing double... or triple

A few weeks ago I posted Easter photos of Athena and Eris. From the time they were born I made their clothes, most of the time matching outfits. As they got older I started to hear occasional grumbling about it but because I was sitting at my noisy sewing machine I was usually unable to hear (or at least ignore) the complaints.

My mother also was adept with a needle and thread. I have quite a few photos of us three girls dressed alike. This one was taken at Christmas 1959 under very bright lights!
After Athena arrived dressing alike seemed perfectly normal to me! This photo was taken at a wedding in 1975 (?).
Adding Eris just made it more fun!
Summer of 1977
Darn it, they were adorable. This outfit also had matching knickers!
Christmas 1981

Even Sadie got matching ribbons. Judging by the big hair I am guessing this was late 80's.

The matching stuff doesn't work as well with boys but Bubba and Jubee were adorable anyway!January 1997

I took this photograph two days ago and it will probably always be one of my favorites. It is Little and Littlest Ms. Eris in their twirly Easter dresses.

It still surprises me when Eris gently asks me before Easter and Christmas if she needs to shop for dresses. I guess as long as I can thread a needle I'll keep cranking them out, or until the grumbling from the girls gets loud enough that my sewing machine won't drown out the noise anymore. For now, I love it!

(No numbers this week. I'm on vacation.)