Monday, November 19, 2018

Susan's 80th birthday party, and what I learned

Such a special night when lots of Susan's family came together to wish her a Happy 80th!


Shown above with her sister Corinne and her brother in law. 



Several of Susan's grandchildren attended, 
including her very youngest granddaughter Sophie:
I got so involved talking to her, that I didn't take many pictures.

I told her, "You were just a new born baby when your Grandma Susan married my Dad in '07."

She disagreed, "No, I was a year old when they got married,"

I gently said, "No, you were just a few weeks old. What year were you born?"

Sophie: "I was born in '06."

Me: "Uh, no, you were born in '07."

She tilted her head and rolled her eyes when I said that. You know the look. (But it was adorable on her!)

Sophie: "I was not born in '07. I was born in '06. 
I'm going to go ask my Mom." 

Good, I thought. 

She came right back, and announced to me: 
"My mom said I was born in '07." 

She could have just walked away. But that sweet little girl was so honest and she came right over to tell me she was wrong. 

But you know what also she did for me? 
At my age, I can be the one who has the wrong memory. It just felt good that it can truly happen to anyone. Even a little girl who is 11 and thought she was born in '06. 

I wish Sophie lived closer. I think we would be good friends. 


But wait, before you go, I have a back story.
Here it goes.

Den and I knew there would be many people invited to this grand celebration. We also knew Oakmont's party room is not very large with very limited seating.

Turns out some sat outside in the cold, 
some sat in the library (next door) 
and many stood around the main room. 

It didn't seem to bother anyone that I could tell. 
We were just all so happy to be together. 

However, Den worries alot about this kind of thing. 
He worried about it all week actually.
He is such a gentleman, and continually, and I mean continually worries about others' feelings. 

But....he worried more about this particular party because he hurt his back about a month ago and it can get horribly painful to stand for any length of time. He worried that he should give up his seat to someone else. He always will gladly do this, but then the pain in his back would flare up from having to stand. 

I'm thankful I am not a man.

So finally I told him several days before the party:

"Hey, you know that hair appt I had to cancel last week? Well I really need to make another one and my hair girl is available Friday night at 7:30. So how about we get to the party early, and then when we are finished eating we can give our chairs to someone else, and  leave. I will just tell everyone I have a hair appt. We don't need to tell anyone about your back."

He seemed okay with that. 

It all seemed fine in planning, but it was after I told a few people there, "We have to leave soon because I have a hair appt." 
that I realized how bad it sounded. 

But this was also a good lesson to me:
When someone else says something 
to me that doesn't sound right, don't judge, 
because we really don't know their back story. (no pun intended)


We so enjoyed the time we got to be there Friday night.
We are SO thankful for Susan and her great family.



The food catered by Cafe Rio was perfect!


And I loved most of all how we got to go around that room 
and all say what Susan means to us. 

She deserved all those kind words.
My favorite was from her son Jon.

He said shortly before Susan met my Dad, and after being single for 20 years, she whispered to Jon that she was ready to remarry 

She said that she wanted to find someone she could take care of.

The angels in heaven must have been listening.

I hadn't known that before and it was so sweet to hear. 


And my Dad, after singing his famous birthday song, announced, 
"I can't believe I'm going to bed tonight 
with an 80 year old woman!"

And on that note, I will just say,
Happy Happy Birthday Susan!
You are so loved. 

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Leo did it his own way.

It was Leo's turn at preschool to do show and tell about the letter U.
He chose to bring his ukulele. His teacher sent this picture to his parents.

But that's not all he did.

He sang a Primary song. A very beautiful one I happen to dearly love.

Karen suggested he might like to sing instead something like Twinkle Twinkle since the kids would all know that. But no, he said he already had a song he wanted to sing.

Of course I have no recording of Leo at preschool that day, 
but here's what he sang.




Karen later sent me this message:




Saturday, November 10, 2018

Amy's Spartan Super


Some things I can't relate to, and this is one of those.

But my Dad would get it. So I hope he sees this.

Last Saturday,
our DIL Amy competed in the Sacramento Spartan Super. 

It's running 8 miles in rugged terrain and going through 29 obstacles. 


I would guess they don't see many Mom's of 7, and Grandmas to 3 in this race. 




Friday, November 9, 2018

A family drives through Paradise, Ca


Last night during bookclub one of the ladies says she is from Paradise. Another in our ward today says that's her hometown. My former neighbor welcomes her ex-sister in law from Paradise to come live with her. Another neighbor's friends lost everything. 

Paradise, Ca is gone. 

I can't even. 

I don't even know this family in the video below, but I like them. 
She turns to prayer. She acknowledges her husband's bravery.
I love stoic men who can press forward.  


Saturday, October 27, 2018

Not the anniversary we expected

Last week was our 19th anniversary. 

I spent most of the night before taking care of our sick grandson. 
He had a cough that would not quiet even for 3 seconds so we 
couldn't sleep. He was exhausted and felt crummy and didn't want 
to be alone, of course. 

Poor Jonas.

So I gave him everything I could think of for his cough 
but nothing was working. 

Finally in the wee hours of the morning, 
I did something I have never done with any of my grandkids...
I gave him my iPad and told him he could play a game on it 
till he fell asleep. 

An hour later I came back to check on him 
and he was finally sleeping.
Coughing still, but asleep.



Den and I had a day planned to celebrate, 
but instead we were happy we could snag a dr appt 
for Jonas that morning.

Being a grandparent is similar to parenting, in that when they need you, there is no place you would rather be. 



As I sat with both of them at the doctor's office that morning, 
I thought back to 19 years ago to our wedding day. 

I thought how this man has been by my side for 19 years, 
no matter what we go through, he is there by my side.
And no celebration, 
no adventure, 
no gift in the world, 
could mean more to me than that!

My marriage to Dennis has brought more joy than I could have imagined back on our wedding day in 1999. 

Reminiscing how our family came together, I found this old video when my sons met his daughters for the first time. 
Here's a clip of that....

My son Logan, and his son Keith were both on missions at the time...
so we were originally making this video for them. 
(Just explaining why we mention them in the video.)

And the sound is off sync, but you can still hear it.

I especially like Kim's chicken demonstration at the end....



Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Wonders this month....

1. Sears came by to fix our ice maker on our fridge. Before leaving the Sears man turned to me and asked if I'd like to buy extended warranties for all of our appliances. 

Not 5 minutes after he walked out I got this news alert on my phone:


Not that I was considering buying those extra Sears warranties. but never the less, glad I didn't. 

2. I loved this book....read it for one of my bookclubs and it made for interesting discussion.

It is Newberry award winning historical fiction. It would be a GREAT book to read with your children or grandchildren, starting about age 9, I would guess. It would open up great discussions about compassion and empathy. And it's such a sweet story. It made me want to go out and rescue someone.


3. And this chili recipe with pumpkin in it was served at another book club. Not spicy at all, and so good!
(Rather than using 2 cans of black beans, she subbed out one for kidney beans.)




4. McKenna sent me this...





5. Karen and Tyler sent me this picture. 
They said it was "National walk to school day" in Meridian. 
Richie is the one in yellow.
I can tell just by looking at this picture 
they have lots of town spirit. 


7. And if you have a baby, 
this might be an economical costume for Halloween.
(have no idea who this baby is...just found it on FB.)

But she might be a little crunchy to pick up.


Tuesday, October 23, 2018

I thought we'd never get that off!

Do you see something odd about this picture?



Yes, you see it.
The wreath is not centered on our pantry door.

The day before we took ownership of this house 
(over two years ago!), 
we did a walk through with the previous owners....
since they were also our realtor.

Everything was in perfect shape except they did show us this little Command hook...
They said they could NOT get it off. And they were worried the more they tried they would end up damaging the door.

So they said we would need to take care of it.

Fair enough (since the rest of the home was flawless)

We jiggled it, we pointed a hair dryer at it hoping the heat would melt it right off (according to google).

But nothing worked.

Every few weeks or months we would try again.

I even put it on my bucket list for 2018. 

Finally I asked my good friend Rebecca if she had any ideas how to get it off.  She said "try dental floss."
I thought that was funny since her husband is a dentist.

But okay. Why not. 

Just in case it worked (not that I was holding my breath) 
I wanted Dennis to witness it. 

So I waited for him to get home.
Then I took out a piece of floss and started at the bottom. At first it wouldn't budge but then suddenly that floss went flying right up to the top, and off popped the little Command hook!

Really? It was that easy? 
We'd been looking at that little out-of-place Command Hook 
for over 2 years!

And now, we can't even tell where that hook once was!

Makes me wonder how many other little annoying things we might  
be able to fix if we just find the solution...

Saturday, October 20, 2018

A Violet kind of day

Violet's Grandma Lynn captured this picture without us knowing.
She and I were discussing her upcoming sleepover at my house.


I asked her to please be all packed by 4pm on Friday 
 (5 days from then)
She said "I'm already packed!"

Violet had a main focus this time...
she wanted to get a Christmas gift for her Primary teacher. 

(Den suggested Halloween instead, and she went for that!)


She spent some time choosing a card for her.
The first one she read to me and I said, "oh that's sounds good."
But she said right back, "No, I think it sounds creepy."

So she read another and this one hit the spot in her heart.



She found several things for her teacher, 
but this was my favorite...

"I want to get these little trophies for my teacher 
so she will feel like a winning person!"


Later that night...
About 2 am I lost this in my sleep:



I cannot sleep without this thing.
I need it under my arm. (it protects my shoulder). 

Den even got up to look for it. 
(It may have been my flashlight that woke him up.)
As soon as he stood up from bed, 
we both saw that he had been sleeping on top of it!

Well that was too much excitement for me in the middle of the night so I could NOT go back to sleep. 

So I got up and started doing laundry, and other chores. 

By 6am when Den's alarm went off. 
He had a breakfast date with his grandpa friends.

I was way sleepy by then.
I wanted to go back to bed!

But Violet would be waking up soon. 
I didn't want her feeling alone, but I couldn't stay awake.

So I wrote her a note 
and then looked around for somewhere to put it, 
that she would hopefully see!



It's nice when 7 year olds can read!
She told me later she saw it right away after she woke up.


While I slept she got her Primary teacher's gift bag all decorated....



And her card all written up with lots of love spilling out of it. 
That's our Violet.


She even had time to decorate her own notebook.


Amazing how kids this decade just know how to pose for pictures.
It's NOT like I told her, "Now put that notebook up by your face and smile."

***Just in case you are worried about Violet
if she hadn't seen my note I know she would have come in our bedroom looking for us. 

But that note gave me an hour of sleep.
I was up before Den even got back from breakfast. 


This is how Violet knew she had the right card!


Thursday, October 18, 2018

Looking back 20 years....1998

If you knew us 20 years ago and you lived in town, you may be on here. Logan's missionary farewell party.


I took out LOTS in this video...
mostly upside down or side way stuff, but it's still not short. 

Many of these people are no longer with us. 


Bill (my first husband)'s Dad had the camera. With McKay and Tyler filling in at times. 

Sunday, October 14, 2018

I think he was incredible

This may just look like an old man from the 1800s to you.
Enos Lewis
1799-1889

He is my Great Great Great Grandfather Enos Lewis.

Enos' son Morgan Berney Lewis, is my Great Great Grandfather.
Morgan's daughter, Lella Lewis is my Great Grandmother.
Lella's daughter, Lella LeMaster is my Grandma.
Her daughter, Gaynor Lea Slinkard is my Mom.

Okay, you got that?

Now I want to tell you what I found out about this man Enos Lewis.

I found the info below in an old book first published in 1903.
(thanks to my sister Heidi)

From Morgan M Lewis about his Uncle Enos:
"He was one of the first to take a stand against American slavery and wielded a power that was felt both in his public speeches and through his financial aid. The writer well remembers going to his house and seeing a company of splendid looking colored fugitives, some twenty-six in number, who were being sheltered and fed. Uncle Enos never seemed so happy as when he was doing some act of kindness to his fellowmen.  

"He abhorred intemperance and profanity and was a shining star to those who might look for the light and in him could find an example that would be safe to follow.

"He loved children and nothing pleased him more than to teach them, and his lessons were of a high order. He believed in a future and a just and impartial God who never created a soul to be lost."

Enos Lewis' daughter said,
"Father's sympathies were enlisted at an early age in behalf of the poor downtrodden slave. I have hear him tell how, when they lived in Ohio, he aided the fugitives who were fleeing from bondage in quest of liberty, by hiding them in his father's barn before he could get a chance to help them on to a place of safety. On one occasion he had three or four of them secreted in the hay mow. His brother Hervy (who was then too young to share the secret, but who afterward became a strong supporter of the anti-slavery cause) went to the barn to hunt eggs and walked all around over the fugitives, but did not happen to discover them. When night came, and the family were all in bed asleep, father took his father's horses and wagon and carried his charges toward the land of freedom to a place of safety, returning to his bed in time to not be detected. He continued in that work until slavery was abolished. He was always in support to those needing help and mother always sustained him in his good words. 

So I started to wonder where Enos got his strong objections to slavery and sense of duty to his fellow man. Than as I read further I found this:

From the death notice of Enos Lewis:
"...He was an early and active opponent of slavery. His parents having left their Virginia home on account of that curse existing there, left a lasting impression on his mind that governed his whole life..."