I Love to Laugh

Laughter-the experience or manifestation of mirth, amusement, or joy.

Well, I experienced MIRTH and AMUSEMENT recently.

Thursday, we watched a DVD of "Johnny Carson"; oh, so funny. I laughed very hard during that.

Friday, I went to a high school play of 'See How They Run. ' Another laugh out loud event.

Health experts say laughter is good for the soul.

I don't really know about that, but it's oh, so fun to laugh!


New Goal for 2010

To get a SHOPPING CART that doesn't wobble, squeak, pull to the side, have wheel problems, jerks, whistles, clanks, jerks some more, bumps, and most of all annoys the heck out of me.

So, there you have it....my goal in life -

Just once, and I'll be a happy person for 2010!


The Clean Plan

About ten years ago, Tammy told me about her home cleaning system which meant her home was always clean, in spite of having five children. (NOTE: one child and her husband had OCD, so maybe that helps a little too.)

Each day after school, her 4 oldest children would pull one card from the day's chore file box. Then, before they did homework, played, practiced, etc., the child did the chore for that day. Next day, each child pulled out a card, did the chore, put the card back into the recipe file box. The chores included everything to keep a home clean: vacuuming, cleaning fridge, toilets, sweeping, etc. The children did chores 6 days a week; no complaining, and she had taught them how to do each chore, and how to be thorough.

She told me, not in a bragging way, but just matter-of-fact. "You can come to my home anytime, and it will be clean."

So, I quasi-adopted her plan. Since I didn't have any kids at home, I was the one doing the chores, but what her system had taught me was to do SOMETHING each day which I did for a long time; it was great.

I really liked it. But, I got lax, lazy, lethargic, lackadaisical, and the system went bye-bye.

Now, I'm going to try again because it is a great system.

Here's how mine works:
Monday - master bedroom, bath, closet. In addition to vacuuming, dusting, etc., I go through one dresser a week.
Tuesday - kitchen, which incudes cleaning fridge shelves, one cupboard or drawer a week; laundry room, again going through cupboards on a weekly basis; and half bath.
Wednesday - living room and office, which really needs a major overhaul right now. Oh, how did the shelves get to be in such disarray?
Thursday - guest bedrooms, guest bathroom; again going through drawers, closets, etc. to get rid of "stuff."
Friday - cards, letters, correspondence, shopping, etc.
Saturday - garage (my side)

My goal is to give to DI/throw away some item each week from each cleaning area.

After typing this, I'm really chuckling to myself...like I'm really going to do this! Let's hear it for D*R*E*A*M*I*N*G!

Funny, too, because I have done it before, so why do I KNOW that I won't do it again....here goes a try, at least.


Miss Hurricane 2009 Gives Up Her Crown

What a great night...Janessa looked stunning in purple, as she did her final walk.
Her words were inspiring and beautiful as she talked about the great privilege to have represented the city of Hurricane. And, what a great support her parents and family have been. Stockton and Landon, along with B & J, stayed to the end cleaning up the stage.
We couldn't help remembering one year ago, as we sat excitedly awaiting the results -
when Janessa Fisher's name was called as Miss Hurricane 2009.
Now, it's on to other things, but,
Janessa, you made us all proud.


NICE; that's what she is!

NICE; amiably pleasant, kind - from dictionary.com

yes, that describes KDHR.

I've always known that, but when I learned what she did recently, it just reaffirmed what I've known for years.

She's just a NICE person; not mean, not mean spirited. Just NICE.

What she did isn't as important as the fact that she volunteered to do something most people would not - would never - do. And, the reason she did is because she is just a NICE person.

KDHR, you inspire me! Thanks for reminding me - again - about relationships, kindness, and goodness.


Conversations I Wish I'd Had With My Mother

1. I wish that I had told her thank you for all the family history work she has done. I'm going through a box of file folders, and I realize that she had done SO MUCH work. She had no computer; it's all hand written on those big genealogy charts. Scattered throughout all these papers are little notes she has made that have been so incredibly helpful.

2. I wish I had asked her about each piece of beautiful collectibles she picked up while living in Europe. I know - in general - about the items, as a whole. But, why didn't I ask her about each individual tea set, beautiful china dinnerware, cut glass wine decanter and 6 glasses, on and on. I should have asked where each piece came from, how she was able to get it; its history, its country, etc.

3. I wish I had shown more of an interest in her yoga, painting, trips, missions, flights with my dad. She had an incredible life, and I was so busy raising five children that I didn't engage her as much as I should have.

4. I wish I had told her how much I admire her love of family. She was proud of her family and loved her parents and siblings very much. She was always positive about her family and their achievements/accomplishments. And, she always tried hard to stay connected with her family; both close and distantly related.

5. I would - very humbly- have to admit; you were right about so many things!

Mom, I love you. Thank you for being such a marvelous, good person! I feel blessed every day for being raised in your loving, nurturing home.

Six years after your death, I miss you every day.


From the Past: The Rent

"What I'd really like to do," RAH said when it became apparent that we would have to move after the Teton Dam Flood of 1976, "is to build a home with a rental apartment in the basement. That way we would earn a little extra income each month."

So, he built the home: (NOTE: a car was not usually parked on our front lawn, we just had a lot of company on this day, so someone parked there.)

top floor, five bedrooms for all of us; middle floor, living, dining, kitchen, great room, sewing room; bottom floor - rental apartment.

For 25 years, we had young married students living in our basement. It was perfect.

And, on the first day of each month, they would come to the door and pay us THE RENT.

RAH always kept THE RENT low for two reasons; he wanted to help the married students out, and he didn't want them to be looking for a cheaper place to live and then always be moving out. It worked, as we were always blessed with great young couples.

THE RENT was always lower than most other places in town, and it was a very lovely furnished apartment, with two bedrooms, storage space,laundry facilities, big back yard they could use anytime, and as an added bonus; the overhead noise from our happy family of five lively kids, their friends, kids practicing musical instruments (including a drum set), various yapping dogs over the years, etc.

THE RENT paid our taxes each year, so it was a great, great blessing in our lives for 25 years.

When we bought a new home just a mile away, we considered having an apartment in the basement, but neighborhood covenants prohibited it, so we no longer had extra money coming in via THE RENT.

When I see pictures of that lovely, big home on Steiner Avenue, I am always reminded of and grateful for RAH's insight and wisdom in building a basement apartment, so that each month we could collect THE RENT.


Parenting; The Challenge

BB: (About a 15 year old son) "We are so concerned about his addiction to gaming. We took away a lot of his privileges, but he wanted them back. So, I told him he had to do chores around the home like the rest of the family. Among the jobs I asked him to do was to clean the toilet. Whiningly he said, "But, I don't know HOW to clean the toilet!" Then, BB said to her techno son, "Well, then GOOGLE it!"

BP: (91 year old mother/grandmother) "I was so sick of sending birthday checks to my family and NEVER getting a thank you from anyone. So, last year, I sent all the checks purposely UNSIGNED. If the person really wanted the check, he/she would have to send it back to me, and then they would include a thank you. It worked."

VT: "I was so sick of sending my family gifts with never even a response they had received it; much less a thank you. So,this year, I am sending an email to my family members, that I will no longer be sending any birthday gifts/cards."

BISHOP MT: (When asked how his 20 year old son, who left home in anger, was doing.) "I haven't talked to him in over two months...he changed his cell phone number, so we have no way to contact him."

Ahhh, such a challenge, but we all try the best we can. And, we always love them!

From the Past

Annual Credit Union Dinner...good food, long presentations about the status of said credit union.

For years, the manager of the credit union gave a mandatory report with facts and figures about how our CU was doing. He used overhead transparencies. They were professional, neatly done; sometimes he'd throw in a cartoon to keep our attention. But, you could see him change the transparency, try to get it centered just right on the overhead projector, etc., etc., etc.

Then -one year- said manager got up to give the report. The big screen appeared at the front of the room.

Instead of blah blah color on a transparency, a dark rich blue appeared on the screen. Then, !POW! headlighting bullets would appear; next words would slide onto the blue background.

I craned my neck to see the overhead projector....couldn't see it. Shane didn't seem to be fidgeting with transparencies, but WHAT WAS HE USING TO CREATE THIS INCREDIBLE PRESENTATION?

I asked the people around me at the table? How is he doing that? Look at how amazing those slides/transparencies/whatever/ are. HOW DOES HE DO THAT?

Looking back to that moment, probably in the 1990's, it seems absurd to have been so astonished at what is now commonplace. But, I remember that night, that awe, that incredulity...for I had just seen my very first



Sometimes I think about people who have boring jobs.

I feel sorry for them. And, maybe they aren't really boring to them, but to MOI, they seem lonely, unfulfilling, and just plain BORING. (Now, granted, some of these jobs are held by college students, so that's okay, if it's just temporary, and to get you through college.)

So, here's my partial list that I can think of today:

Mall sun-glass kiosk worker

Mall kiosk make-up/face lotions worker (Come on over, we can take 10 days off your face!)

Cartier's in Las Vegas Mall; 3 salespeople in the store - no customers; they looked like they were bored, and would practically beg people to just come in and browse.

Actually any ritzy store in Vegas... when we were recently there, the stores were all empty with very bored-looking sales personnel.

Security guard in a mall

Secretary in a slow-market business. (Like the vacuum store we just visited; no customers and she's there from ten to five.)

I would hate to have a job where you have to try to look busy!

So, there's my list of boring jobs...care to add to it?


Happy Chinese New Year

It's the Year of the Tiger:

Kung Hei Fat Choi!

Vegas for Valentine's Day

"How would you like to stroll around Vegas for an afternoon?
"That will be our Valentine gift to each other... no shows, just strolls. and we'll spend the night."
Off to Vegas on Thursday - just the two of us...to see:
the sights,
the people,
the lights,
the glitz, glamour,
and lots of people spending money they don't have.
A fun time was had by RAH & MOI.
(But, we both had very sore leg muscles the next day.)


New Neighbors

How I knew they were not like most of our other neighbors:
#1. Moving van. NO ONE around here uses a moving van. Usually, the new people pull up in a pick-up or borrowed van and the entire elders' quorum shows up to unload. I can't even remember seeing a moving van in the neighborhood.

#2. When we went to meet them in their home, the first things I saw were: 4 poodles yapping/barking, climbing all over me. And, a 1/2 empty bottle of Jack Daniels on the kitchen counter. In most of the homes, it would be 4 children yelling/screaming, climbing all over, and a 1/2 empty bottle of caffeine-free coke on the kitchen counter.

#3. The air was permeated with smoke. The smoke that we are more used to in this neighborhood is barbecue smoke from steaks/burgers on the grill.

BUT, from the moment we met B & B, we liked them - a lot.

Both are small; stature and physique. Both drove for Disney for many years...Bill as a cross-country truck driver, Barbara as a sort of chauffeur, needing to be ready at a minute's notice.

Barbara is spunky, fiesty, opinonated.
Bill is hard-working, gets things done.

And, they are great, great neighbors. Last night they brought over home-made enchiladas...oh, so good. Two weeks ago, it was home-made split-pea soup. They don't eat sweets at all, so at Christmas when someone sent them a package of chocolates, candies, etc., they gave it to us. And, after I had this blog posted, Bill brought over home-made lasagna to share....

They aren't like a lot of the people in the neighborhood, it's true, but oh, how great to know Bill and Barbara!


The Kid with the Musical Ears

"Hey," Martha said as we sat around in her living room. We were all being entertained by Jeremy as he swayed and stamped to the music at age 18 months. "Did you know that Jeremy has musical ears."
(She had taken one of those classes where you read people's faces and can tell about their personalities.)

She got that right...he does indeed, have musical ears.

I just came across a letter I wrote to my parents when Jeremy was in junior high -
I was quoting the band teacher who said, "In all my years of teaching, I've never had
a saxophone player who was as natural as Jeremy."

Ah, he's musical and cute too!
"Hello myself," I heard him talking on the phone one day....then, "How are you myself?"
One day, as I heard Jeremy mowing the back lawn, I looked outside the upstairs window,
and he had mowed,
"I Love Mom"
in the lawn.
Where's the camera when you need it?

When he was in the 7th grade, he and Jim Taylor leaned across the aisle and whispered to each other,

"When we grow up, let's be doctors."
Today- both of them are doctors.

Jeremy is a Navy Doctor/Anesthesiologist
currently serving at an Army base in Farah, Afghanistan

So, today, Happy, happy Birthday.

We are, indeed, proud of you!

And, thanks for this service to our country, dear son, Jeremy!


Birth Order Conundrum

Let me just say right out: I believe in birth order - generally speaking.

I have 4 oldest grandchildren....3 of them have the characteristics of typical first children;

follow the rules, feel responsible over younger siblings (even if it is to beat them up occasionally), in general do what adults ask them to.

2nd children tend to not follow the rules as much, be more independent, rebellious.

How does this happen? Why does this happen? Is it true in all cultures? (Ha! That's funny because in lots of cultures, they only have one child, so who would know about birth order in those societies?!)

Last night, J said about his 2 boys; "They are just SO very different, could it be birth order?"

Who knows? We just all come so different with different personalities; it's hard to tell what causes this difference.

But, I believe that birth order does account for some of it.
So, how about you...what do you think?!?!


The Weather Person

"We'd like to introduce you to the newest member of our weather family here in St. George.....

"LGH is our new weather person. The thing that is interesting about LGH is that she has not had any formal training in weather. In fact, she said she thought the JET STREAM referred to the white stuff forming out the tail end of a jet flying in the sky.

"But, we hired her because she is ALMOST FLAWLESS in predicting R*A*I*N. She gets it right almost 100 per cent of the time. Our other weather persons were never that accurate.

"So, LGH, tell us, without even going to weather school, how is it that you can get it right so often?"

LGH: It's quite easy, really. I just wash my windows! I can't predict if it will be a hard, terrible rain, or a light rain, but whenever I wash my windows, within a few hours or days, it rains....sometimes a light rain, just enough to spot and ruin the newly-cleaned windows. Sometimes a downpour, which really gets those windows filthy.

I can wash my windows in a perfect, cloudless sky, or when the weatherman says no rain is coming for months, and poof, once those windows are sparkling clean, HERE COMES DE RAIN!

I don't mean to brag, but I've been good at this for several years now. And, sometimes, I have the dirty windows to prove it!

"It's great to have you on board, LGH. We'll look forward to many years of you letting us know when we can expect the R*A*I*N."


Why I Love Wednesdays

I get up early; exercise if time....

get dressed in a dress;
(a person doesn't have to wear a dress to the family history center; in fact, I'm the only one who ever wears a dress, but I like wearing dresses, and I have no pants that currently fit - thank you very much. Today, I wore a funky new black and white skirt with elastic waistband that cut off the circulation to my lower body. I thought I might be rushed to emergency, but I made it through the morning.)

head out to the family history center to be there by 8:40.

And, just enjoy the rest of the morning.

It's so fun to help the patrons. Some very skilled at computers, some with little or no keyboard experience, but all wanting to gather their family history. It's truly beautiful and inspiring to me.

Today, I was working with a lady - about 75 - who was so impatient when the computer wouldn't respond instantaneously or before. It just made me chuckle because here's a lady who grew up without anything remotely like a computer, but she wanted the information NOW, NOW, NOW!

I also took a class on GOOGLE. Awesome, helpful, and it included things that Jordan had shown me before, and encouraged me to use, but I forgot!

I love the missionaries, the volunteers, the patrons, and just the general atmosphere.

So, now you know why I love Wednesdays!


In Love - with TIVO

"Are you watching Oprah?" she asked when I called her on the telephone.
"No, I never watch it."
"Wanda Barzee's children are on."

Now, my curiousity was piqued. Wanda Barzee, in case you live on a planet far away, was the kidnapper of Elizabeth Smart...and if you don't know who that is, I can't help you - you definitely are from another galaxy.

But, I had a special interest in Wanda Barzee's children because for two and a half years Wanda's niece lived across the street from me. I loved AL; beautiful, extremely talented, and a great neighbor.

So, I wanted to meet - via Oprah - AL's cousins.

It was 3:45. I could get 15 minutes of the interview...oh, so wrong...here's what happened.

Commercial was on when I turned on the tv. I waited - more, more, more commercials.

Finally, Oprah herself appeared, "Have you forgiven your mother yet? .....We'll find out what they have to say after this commercial break."

More, more, more commercials.

Then again Oprah: "Just before the commercial, we were asking if you had forgiven your mother?"

Oldest daughter: "Healing is a....."

Oprah: "We'll continue that thought after this break."

More, more ,more commercials.

Anyway, you get the picture. 15 minutes of the show left on the clock; but, in actuality, maybe five minutes of show - 10 minutes of commercials.

So, that is why I love TIVO, because we do not have to sit through those interminable commercials. Even though we don't watch a lot of tv, thank you TIVO, for rescuing RAH and MOI from those long, long, long, long commercial breaks.

And, another thing; thanks to Jordan enlightening us, we now can watch Netflix movies/tv shows through our tv/TIVO. Oh, it is slick.

RAH said, "When our friends come over tonite, can you get us a good movie?"

I look on the Netflix list on the computer, click the blue ADD button, and presto, the movie or tv show is instantly on our tv. Granted, there is not a huge variety of newer stuff available for instant viewing, and we'll still order movies that arrive in our mailbox, but this is pretty slick indeed.

Thanks for the heads-up, Jordan!

Speaking of Jordan, he introduced us to my newest favorite extinct tv show; it's British; it's snarky; and it's called DOC MARTIN....fun, fun, fun.

Cousins Coincidence

Dixie texted; she wanted to meet us for lunch. Dixie is Allen's 2 or 3 COUSIN; who knows, but anyway, they are related.  She is won...