Saturday, June 29, 2013

The Next Closet Project

It's time to re-do another closet!  So that everything will be ready for Wayne to demolish and patch this morning, Michelle and I emptied the closet in the computer room this week.  Even that took some preliminary work - moving the sewing table upstairs and emptying a dresser to give away.  Isn't it interesting how in order to do one thing you often have to do a bunch of other things first?
Anyway, as you can see, the closet was full (I forgot to take a true "before" picture - this was after removing part of the stuff), and now it's empty.
There were boxes of old financial files, bins of fabric and craft projects, binders of genealogy and seminary manuals, several years worth of church magazines, office and craft supplies, wrapping paper and bows, mailing boxes, and maps and Scout resources.  I know my dear husband thinks I have too many interests; how do you decide which ones to give up???
No before picture, but the filing cabinet has a new home - behind the door instead of next to the computer desk.  And since we had to empty it to move it, I actually looked at everything before replacing the files.  So, now it's not jam-packed, although I admit it wouldn't take much for it to reach that state again.
If it came out, it ought to all fit back in, right?  The idea is to make it more organized and pretty.  I can tell you the shelves (Wayne's handiwork) will be gorgeous; let's hope I can make the contents of the shelves look nice as well.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Someone's in the Kitchen

One of Michelle's summer goals was to do more cooking and baking and menu planning so she'd be ready to really be on her own once she goes back to school (no cafeteria meal plan).  We've been the lucky beneficiaries.  Yesterday she made the "best bread I've ever had" according to Dad.  That's high praise!  It was delicious.  I hope I can recreate once she's gone again.

Here are some of the yummy things we've had lately.
 Lemon Pasta Chicken with Garlic Bread
Panini, Frozen Strawberry/Blueberry Jam and Wheat Bread, Lasagna Rolls, Meatballs, Snickers Caramel Cheesecake Cookies, and Sushi
 Chocolate Peanut Butter Munchies

Friday, June 21, 2013

Flashback Friday - First Day of Summer

Flashback Friday
Some memories of summer

Cherries were on sale today, so we picked some up at the grocery store.  As I ate a handful for lunch, I was immediately transported to my childhood back patio.  I can't remember if my mom allowed us to spit out the seeds - maybe she did - but I don't think we ever ate cherries indoors. They were special picnic/outside treats.  And for some reason they define summer for me.

Today is also the 20th anniversary of this family home evening road trip activity to visit the grave of Wayne's grandparents in Midway, Utah.  I remember not being thrilled about the excursion; it was an hour's drive each way; my body was still recovering from giving birth to a nine pound baby ten days earlier and I just didn't feel like sitting that long; we hadn't tried putting all seven of us in the car yet; I wasn't sure how the baby would do on a long drive; and the list could go on and on.  It's a good thing we took a picture so we have proof I rose above the long list of excuses!   (I think Jeff was mad because he wanted to hold the baby in the picture.)  Overall, the evening brings back good memories, and I get to remember it every year because we recorded it in our Family Almanac!

Summer also means visits to my grandparents' houses - swimming at one and barbecuing at the other (after helping them with chores around the house).  It means lazy days of reading, trips to the beach and berry fields, working in the garden, and family camping vacations.  I'm thankful for fond memories, and I hope my kids have enjoyable memories of summer as well.  

Happy First Day of Summer!

What are some of your favorite summer memories?

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Are Men or Women Better Drivers?

We came across this gem while going through the "save to make scrapbooks some day" boxes.  I laughed so hard I cried, and wanted the rest of you to have that wonderful experience. This was David's answer to an English journal prompt when he was a junior in high school.

Journal #14 - Who are better drivers?  Men or women?  Please support your answer with specific details.

Of course I'm not going to admit that women are better drivers.  Actually I can't admit it since it's not true.  I think men are better drivers.  Men are more capable of controlling a machine.  My mom, the female I'm most accustomed to driving with, can't drive.  In her younger days, she was involved in several accidents which involved only one car and some poles which were cemented in place.  How can you crash into something that doesn't move?  How can you do that more than once?  Must be that women are bad drivers.  I may not be a driver that obeys speed limits but I am still a skilled driver.  I have never been in any accidents.  I have had no tickets.  I maintain control of the vehicle and give my passengers a smooth or rough ride according to my mood.  Women give you a rough ride no matter what.  Smooth driving isn't a skill that they have.
We had many fun adventures when the car wasn't in the shop getting repaired!
I wonder how he would answer it now?  Especially since he couldn't truthfully state "I have never been in any accidents" any more.  I readily admit that I have backed into poles on two separate occasions.  The first time I was on automatic pilot backing out of our apartment parking spot where the pole is normally on the left side.  However, someone (probably David!) left their bike in our assigned spot, so I had parked in the neighbor's where the pole was on the right side, and consequently turned the wheel the wrong direction.  The second time was even more embarrassing because I backed into a light pole in the middle of an empty parking lot, in front of a crowd of spectators.  It's a good thing I've gotten over those two accidents, although driving will never be on my list of top ten fun activities!

Monday, June 17, 2013

A Sunny Saturday

The plan was to go to the beach on the Saturday after painting the house as our reward.  However, the weather didn't cooperate.  Finally the rain stopped and a sunny Saturday was in the forecast.  Unfortunately, there were other activities on the calendar so we couldn't spend the whole day having fun.  Fortunately, the sun rises early, and there was time to spend an hour at the beach watching the sunrise (and swatting no-see-ums) before the service projects. 
The water was so calm!
 We got there just in time.
And watched until the sun was nice and bright.  
 We have a beautiful world!!!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Happy Birthday to Steven!

As I was working on Weston's birthday post, I realized that Steven also has a milestone birthday this year as well.  We'll save the 30 pictures for another 10 years, and make this post a bit shorter.  But you can still see the growth over 20 years!  He's gone from being a little (well, actually our biggest one at 9 pounds, 3 ounces at birth) baby to a grown-up missionary serving the people of Africa.  We're so proud of him!
Happy Birthday Steven!! 

Yes, he's always been a happy, smiling person!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Update on our Missionary

Steven's mission president visited Angola this past week and apparently they had some very successful and motivating meetings.  You can find larger copies of these individual pictures here, on President Kretly's blog.  We're grateful that he takes the time to post these, because our missionary just isn't (and never has been) a picture taker.  Fortunately, he's an awesome email writer, and that's a better attribute.
The best attribute is his wonderful testimony:

"I know that God directs His work and that He inspires the people He has chosen to lead so that they can bring about much good and help others to come unto Christ. I love my Heavenly Father; He is so benevolent, and I know that He hears our prayers of faith. I know that we can receive revelation to be able to help Heavenly Father in His work. I also know that faith works miracles, even when others doubt. I love being here. I know that this is the work of the Lord."