Spring Must Be Here!

Was this the first morning, or just the first morning I noticed:


Ah, I love this time of year!

Picture From the Past - May 2011

Pedicure for the Hackworth ladies on the day of Jenni's graduation.
Doc Kristi, Janna, Janessa, NEW DOC Jenni, Loni, Carisa


Sunday Visits

My favorite thing to do on a Sunday afternoon is visit some of the people in the neighborhood...tonite's visits included:

SA - whose daughter is battling drug and alcohol addiction....it reminded me that we each carry heavy burdens and we should not feel like we are the only ones suffering.

DC - who spoke in church and gave the most incredible talk about patience.  She is always an inspiration to me with her amazing faith and knowledge of the Gospel.

DB - just dropped in to see if she is feeling any better...she has health issues and is recovering from colon cancer.  Her husband is on dialysis.  It reminded me to be grateful for health when we have it.

SS - is on her way to see a neurologist in SLC tomorrow.  She suffers from pain and cannot get any relief.  Aside from being in a wheelchair, she now has this debilitating pain which she is hoping the doctor can help her with.  It reminded me to be grateful for mobility.

RMJ - oh my heck, what a great way to end the visits; which were all pretty short.  She is from Brazil, beautiful, talented, classy, and just fun.  And a talker.  But, such a fun, delightful person.  Visiting her was a great reminder of the many wonderful people who come from all over the world.

All in all, I realize there are so many good good people in our neighborhood; many with challenges, ALL with faith and HOPE.

I do love Sundays.


The Perfect Couple

How do you find the perfect mate?

I don't know the answer to that question, but I do know it's a study in human relationships to see couples interact and to see their relationships at work.... .

I love being around C & B.  They are so pleasant to each other.  They are so supportive and positive with each other.  They are totally in love after 15 years and 4 kids.  They are each other's best friend and they build each other up.  It's so fun to see them in church as they share little secret looks and smiles.  They laugh easily and just enjoy being together.

As a direct contrast, my next-door neighbors, B & B are very hard to be around.  They are mean to each other; saying very negative and quarrelsome things to each other.  They say such derogative statements to one another.  I always wonder why they married each other.

I think it says a lot about people about how they treat the ones the closest to them.



The letters were on a license plate at a gas station:
I had no clue what they meant, but this is what immediately sprang into my head:

And, indeed I do on this incredibly gorgeous spring day.


The Next-Door Neighbor

She brings us:

home-made soups,
pork dinners with potatoes,
corned beef and cabbage dinners,
fresh vegetables,
fresh fruits,
candy she doesn't want.

Recently, she bought Allen a sweater, and a purse and blouse for me.

So, when I didn't have any St. Patrick's Day decorations, she went out and bought some for me!

Today, I put up my few Easter decorations;

 I do not want her to feel like she has to buy some for me.  What a neighbor!


When the Grandkids Come

Putting together a portion of his Leprachaun Trap...
AH, those swirls are tricky.

He'll need a few more years to grow into this exercise bike......

Sunday Morning with the Grandkids

Bible Story Time and ITouch Time....perfect Sunday morning with Eli and Miles.


Of Thee I Sing

Caucus night in our neighborhood...

About 100 people of all ages gather in the school auditorium.  (But, this is only one of 105 caucus meetings going on around our city.)

Views are heard; votes are taken.  I don't agree in all cases; in fact, strongly disagree.

The grass roots of American politics is on display.

And, I am overwhelmingly grateful to live in America.


I'll Just Never Be a....

Shoe Fashionista!

Truthfully, my feet stared hurting just walking by these, lovely as they appear to be, but oh, my aching feet!

So, sadly, I had to settle for flat and practical, but I did - for once - go for a little splash of color...

I'm lovin' my new pink sandals...and I'm loving the C.O.M.F.O.R.T.



Just a few days ago, I posted about Kathleen;  she is 82 and I tell how she has always been in such good health.  See the post here

On Sunday night, TWO DAYS after that post, Kathleen suffered a heart attack!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  She is in the hospital, miles away from her home in Idaho.  It is likely she will have surgery.

Then, I just got off the phone with my friend whose 36 year old niece died of a brain tumor a few days ago.  (Side note:  6 women in the same neighborhood also had brain tumors!)

I hate stories like this.

I hate news that involves:

health issues
car accidents
job loss

It totally upsets my equilibrium; it throws me for a loop.

I want happiness for everyone all the time.

I really WANT "Happily Ever After!"

Not just for me, but for everyone else as well.

Does there always have to be opposition?

I guess so.

Takes Your Breath Away

It won't last long, but while it does, I'll enjoy it every day!


Easy Savings Plan

Here's how it works:

Just drop all your left-over coins in a jar.

When the jar gets full, head to the bank and drop the coins in their money counting machine....

Before going to the bank, I had guessed there would be about $14.00

This time, I liked being wrong....very wrong.


Janessa and her friend just before heading to California and FUN for Spring Break....

Don't they look cute in their home-made bows?


Ah, Spring

Photo by Al Hale; as shown on KSL weather report; March 12.2012

This tree is buzzing with bees!  Long Live Bees and Honey.


Why I Loved Teaching in China - From My Inbox

Dear Lingling,
How are you? I haven't seen you  so long. I miss you very much. Last week, when I was interpreting English in the International apartment, a retired teacher who has a master degree from Harvard reminded me of you. I think of the wonderful time we had together and the most interesting classes I have ever had in my life.
Lingling, how time flies. This is the second half of the sophomore year. At this time last year, we were having our presentation about our hometowns. In the two classes, not only you, but also all of us broadened our horizons about China. Before, I thought China was mysterous for its complex geography and various races. You urged us to learn more about our country and inspire our love for our hometown. You know, everyone was so proud when introducing our hometown.
It is a tragedy that Chinese are considered obedient and lack of logical or critical thinking. But in your class, we were asked to talked a lot about certain topics, whether it be sensitive or not. We discussed the advantages and disvantages of Guangzhou Asian Games. We talked about what to do when meeting a beggar. Our opinions were various and nothing would be censored. In the last but two classes, we gave an oral speech. We heard the inner voice of our classmates, we shared our stories together, and we got a better understanding of each other. Someone cried on the platform;others showed gratitudes to their friends and parents. I can still remember the role play. I acted as the doctor and Cynthya as patient...The memories are so vivid and warm.
Lingling, "It is a beautiful day in GZ", I say to myself every day, which helps me keep a merry mind and be positive towards everything in life. I am very busy now because I have three part-time jobs. One is to be an interpretor for the international students or foreign teachers; one is to be a tutor for a freshman who will attend the IELTS test; another is to teach a senior high student English. I am also busy with my academy. Unlike last year, now I am more confident with my English. I read a  lot of English materials. For example, Financial Times, Times, Wall Street Journal. I like scanning BBC and CNN websides. I learn differet perspectives towards the same issue, especially about China. You know Chinese govenment is very sensitive on some exsting social problems. It is difficult to get such kinds of information. Though the western media, I learn more about China and most importantly, I learn to judge which is true, which is false. I like reading. The more I read, the more ignorance I think of myself. This month, I focus on the proposals of the National People's Congress and Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference. It is considered to be the only time in a year that we can speak out on politics. Last September, I voted for a representative. That was the first time in my life. I have hope for the changing face of my country.
Lingling, I will leave for Vancouver, Canada this Semtember as an exchange student. It is my dream to be out of China to gain international horizons. I am lucky and happy that I have got this opportunity. Once, you asked me to "Keep dreaming". I bear it in mind.
Lingling, how are you going afer coming back to the USA? Do you travelled a lot with Mr. Hackworth? Or do you stay in your home, enjoying the beautiful sunshine, singing and dancing with Mr. Hackworth? It is said that Americans do not live with their children. Anyhow, I dont know whether it's true.
Best wishes

My Letter to the Devil

Dear Satan,

You might be feeling pretty smug right now....

1 in 4 high school seniors smoke on a regular basis,
66% of high school students have had sexual intercourse, 
more and more couples live together outside of marriage,
television, movies, and radio shows continue to lower decency standards,
incivility is at an all-time high,

So, it would appear you might be winning the war; and war it is.

Today, I went to the temple, and
I realized that there are still some places and people that you 

I was by an elderly lady; her white dress was yellowed with age, the long sleeves were fraying.  She has spent a lot of years living a life of service.  I do not know her, but her goodness and love shown on her countenance.  And, there were many more just like she is.

I spent some time this week with Allen's aunt; she is a saint.  She is 80 years old, so innocent in many ways, so pure and good; her entire life is one of service and goodness.  She is just about the happiest person I have ever known.  Her life is totally devoted to her family and her God.  Oh, she is so pleasant to be around.  You do not have hold on her joyful heart.

Allen's sister was here for a couple of days.  She is so good and so perfect; the gospel is her whole life.  She is happy, fulfilled, and now, newly in love.  She has found a man her equal who also loves God and the Gospel.  They are so devoted to each other.  She is really nearly perfect.  You do not have even a speck of space in her heart.

You have no influence on those people.  

You lost that war long ago with people like the old lady in the temple, Eunice, Donna, and so many more just like them, including the young people in my neighborhood.

Oh, you are winning some of the people out in the big wide world, but as for me, I find great joy being with people whose lives you have no influence over.

Sometimes you get me...I feel filled with guilt, grief, sorrow, sadness, despair.

And, then I realize that is just what you want me to feel.  I am giving in to the feelings you want to use to destroy my equilibrium.

So, I'm writing to let you know that you don't have everyone, and as for me, I'll keep fighting to keep you away from me too.



If You Have Your Health, You Have It All!

Her name is Kathleen.

And, even though she is 82 years old, she is still classy, elegant, aware, and just plain fun.

Today she wasn't feeling well, and she told me that she has never really had a lot of health problems.

BUT, and it's a big one...

she has one son and three daughters.

And, incredibly, each of her three daughters has had cancer.

The daughter with Hodgkins is no longer alive.

The daughter with breast and the daughter with leukemia are alive, but have some health issues.

I'll say it again...

If you have your health, you have it ALL!


Time Warp

"So," I asked her on a recent visit.

"Now that your mission is over and you are back home, what do you do with your time?"

She smiled.

"I'm working feverishly on my family history," she said.

And then she added, "My own living family is so messed up, that I'm trying to straighten out the dead."

She laughed.

"It's lots easier."



It's so fun to wait for certain things:

a trip,
Christmas morning,
a bonus check,
a new baby,
family coming to visit, 

OR......drum roll please.....

an announcement from Apple about a new IPAD!

tee hee.


Baking Day

Oh, we all love baking day;

the house smells so good;

and the bread tastes oh, so D.E.L.I.C.I.O.U.S.!

Whole-wheat even.

We give away some, and keep some.

It's a good day on baking day.


Being Old Bites!

"I don't want her to visit me...she's old,"  MH said to the RS president.

"I'll let the sisters come to visit if they are young and have young kids like me."

That hurts....

Did I feel that way as a young mother?

Well, to ease the pain, I'll go have a bowl of chili's at Wendy's where I can get a 10 per cent Senior discount on a Wednesday.


The Knock at the Door

11:30 Saturday morning...

There is a knock at the front door.

Standing there are two adorable Cub Scouts:  Logan and Cameron

They are selling...

I am buying...who could resist those two adorable freckle-faced Scouts?

Not MOI, that's for sure.

Cocky or Self-Confident....

...it's so difficult to distinguish.

Self-confidence is a very admirable trait.

Cockiness (BIG EGO) - not so great.

So, how do you distinguish between those two?

Because you definitely want the one, but not the other.


Hey, GOOGLE, You Messed Up On This One!

Eli and Miles Hackworth celebrate Dr. Seuss' birthday...BTW, did you know about his name...Seuss is his mother's maiden name, and he added Dr. when he disappointed his father by not going into medicine....
which we are all glad about.

I love going to Google's Home Page on special days; they have the most fun, engaging, unique ways of spelling out Google.



I mean, we - and Google - should totally give credit to the man who singlehandedly helped get rid of Dick and Jane.

And, who invented the word...


Let's all go out and eat some green eggs and ham!

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...