Friday, July 29, 2011

Last Week's Projects

Remember there's a good reason to have kids; it's so they can do all of the hard work for you. We've been taking full advantage of having a couple of unemployed college-age sons at home this summer. Last week they finished painting the daunting entry and stairwell.
While they were busy with that, Michelle prepped for Trek 2011 Round Two. (And she had a great time!)There was also some time last week before she left to make a little progress on her closet shelving. The supports and top shelf were installed.
Another project was replacing the mismatched front door knob, which meant repainting the door as well.Another several-day project was preparing the front yard for a new layer of mulch. That's hard work in the heat! But it looks so much nicer now.
Finally we had time to start preparing for the next major project - fixing up and organizing the garage. First, everything had to be moved to one side and then Jeff pressure washed the floor. You already know that it got painted this week. Now we have to wait for it to cure so we can move everything and repeat the process on the other side. But that's NEXT week's project!Today we're heading to the outlet mall to see how much success we'll have in updating the wardrobes of these excellent workers in preparation for a new school year which is quickly approaching!

This Week's Other Projects

Yesterday was filled with projects, but so have the other days of this week. Monday's projects were in the garage. The floor needed "etching" in preparation for new paint.And the walls needed some fresh paint as well. We even painted the odd cement pole and the base for the air handler. (We also want to cover up the drips on the side with a new coat of gray paint - any idea on what type to use on metal?)Then while we left Jeff home on Tuesday to paint that garage door (he did a terrific job) and do some other miscellaneous things, Michelle accompanied Steven to Brandon so he could mow the lawn and she could sit in an empty house.Wednesday's project was painting the garage floor, or at least half of it.This was a job that had to be done before the temperature reached 85° so we were finished early.That left some time to check the computer and find cute pictures like this one. Evelyn looks like her daddy in this pose!And this week we finally finished doing something with all of these boxes in the kitchen.
It looks much nicer now!
We'll see how long we can keep it looking like this.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Today in Paradise

I love the view out our kitchen window!However, we didn't spend a lot of time looking at it today; it was another work day, and today's project was the kids' bathroom upstairs. It's amazing what a difference a bit of re-caulking and some new paint makes.Even though we were working hard, there was still time for napping and enjoying the computer, and we even took the opportunity to re-enact screwing in the closet shelf! (Michelle was in her room doing some touch-up painting and I had the camera handy, so she thought that would be a good idea.)And because we live in paradise, we had some special visitors today too.Now the day is done, and the bathroom is all nice and shiny - all ready for whoever wants to visit!
Were you observant and noticed this isn't the same bathroom as earlier in the post? I couldn't get a good picture (small spaces and weird angles) of today's project, but last week's project is still nice and shiny too!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Rudolph Day - Budget

Once again it's time for Rudolph Day. There are a lot of different aspects to having a successful Christmas, but one of the most important is setting a budget. I know it's not very glamorous, but no one wants to be depressed in January when the bills come in. There's a lot to be said for planning ahead and living within your means. After all, if you search for "my best Christmas memories" the majority of the stories will be about the spirit of the season, of friends and family and relationships and service, not about material gifts and money.
We set up a fairly unique family budget, for both Christmas and birthday gift giving, and I figured it was time to share it. When we got married we were full-time students with extremely limited income, yet we still wanted to give gifts to our loved ones. So we came up with a formula that worked for us then and was meant to grow with us as our family and income grew.

I had it all explained, but Blogger ate it, and now it's late and I'm tired. Maybe someday soon I'll try again to explain it. In the meantime, just know that it's never too early to come up with your own Christmas budget. Here's a form from a site that I've found helpful in the past.
Have fun enjoying your summer, no matter how hot and humid it is, by dreaming of, and planning for, a wonderful Christmas in just a few months!

Friday, July 22, 2011

The Infamous Hat

There are hundreds of pictures on the computer and still in the camera that could, and maybe even should, be posted here for others to enjoy. The time for that organizing project will come someday in the future. In the meantime, here's a little something so you know we're thinking of you. "I have a brilliant idea!"
"I'll take Grandpa's hat."
"Oh, no you won't. That's mine."
"Ah, but I want it and I'm cute, so I know you'll let me at least borrow it. Besides, you don't want to hear me scream!"
"I love my grandpa."

Monday, July 18, 2011

Friendshipping with Love

Memorable Monday Moments:
Friendshipping with Love

(a Primary sharing time activity taken from the February 1986 Friend which we used for family night several times over the years - it's on my mind because our recent Relief Society lesson was on missionary work)

Friday, July 15, 2011

There's No Place Like Home -

and one is definitely plenty!

Can you tell I ran out of pre-planned posts this week? So, instead of sharing memories from our first home (as opposed to an apartment), you get a couple of pictures showing what we've been up to at our current two houses.

The week we moved I noticed one of the lovely huge oak trees in the backyard wasn't green like all the others, but I didn't worry too much about it then. Guess what? The first piece of mail forwarded to our new address was a notice from the HOA that we needed to remove that dead tree. So, we went back, had someone cut it down, and then the boys hauled all 8,000 pounds of it to the dump.
Of course it's not enough to have only one major project per week! We've also spent time washing walls and painting the living room, dining room, entry, and halls. I'm so glad Jeff isn't afraid of climbing to the top of the ladder, because it definitely gives me the heebie-jeebies! I'm fine with staying on the ground and taking pictures.
There's still more painting and organizing to do, so I don't know when we'll get back on a regular posting schedule, but I hope you're all having great summer fun with your own choice of projects!

Friday, July 8, 2011

There's No Place Like Home - Riverdale

When I planned these posts a month ago, I thought I'd be caught up enough with the moving process to elaborate more on the memories associated with these next couple of places. Wishful thinking!
Anyway, once we were expecting our third child, we decided it was time to look for a 3-bedroom apartment. We found one in a four-plex at the end of a cul-de-sac in Riverdale, Utah. You'll notice that it backed up to the freeway, really just a freeway entrance where I-84 and I-15 meet. That provided the setting for one of the more memorable adventures that occurred while we were living there (you'll need to ask Weston for details). We moved in December 1987, just in time to celebrate David's 3rd birthday. Brad was born a few months later, and Jeff a couple of years after that.You can imagine the fun we had with four little boys, and the many teaching opportunities that arose. Here Weston and David are cleaning up the mess after spilling the sugar canister, and learning how to change the water in the goldfish bowl. I can also remember Brad helping can apricots, Wayne buying his first drill so we could repair the hole in the wall (and put in a stronger door stop), stopping the flood in the bedroom because someone wanted to help water the back lawn, and helping Weston create a "one-eyed, one-horned, flying, purple, people-eater" costume. If I took more time, I could probably fill a whole book with great memories.
The hill in the vacant lot next door provided hours of entertainment for little boys, all year round. We loved our ward and our bishop and the opportunities we were given to serve.
After three years, the time was right to be done with apartment living and start looking for a home to buy, so we did. It was tough leaving all the friends we had made, though, and we'll never forget our wonderful experiences in Riverdale.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Favorite Summer Desserts

Works for Me Wednesday
Favorite Summer Desserts

Time for the fourth in the series of favorite summer recipes! This one is desserts, particularly frozen desserts. We're thoroughly satisfied with a scoop of ice cream (or two or three!) or a popsicle, but sometimes we want something just a bit fancier, particularly for Sunday dinner. Here are a few of the ones that we'll have over and over: Ice Cream Cake

Candy Bar Pie

I hope you enjoy trying these! We all love them, and pulling a "fancy" dessert from the freezer is definitely something that works for me. What's your favorite frozen dessert?