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The Easter Surprise!

For the past few weeks Den's daughter Kris, and Amy (my son Logan's wife),
have been talking and texting about a surprise
they were cooking up for their daughters Jessica and Kylie,who have become BFFs...

Unbeknownst to Kylie, Jessica flew from Utah to California last night.
Today Kylie came over here for Easter dinner....or that was all she thought was going to happen

So the plan was, when Dennis said, "What did you get for Easter, Kylie?"
that was Jessica's cue to come out of the hallway where she was hiding and surprise Kylie.

I caught it on video, of course, but I missed recording Den's cue.
So this will begin with Kylie answering the question,
"What did you get for Easter?"  
and then Jessica appears right on cue.

Watch Austin read his mission call!

We knew it was coming soon....but not sure what day, or really what week.

So last Saturday just after 4:30 Amy calls and says, "It's here!"
We took the cookies I had made out of the freezer, and Den flew off to the store to get stuff for salad,
and then off to Pizza Hut. We were going to have a party at house in less than 90 minutes

Amazing how many showed up with such little notice on a busy Saturday evening.
But we are so glad they did!

We were all very surprised about a minute after he reads his call! 
Take a look and you will see what I mean. I've never heard of this happening before.

The beautiful song at the end? It's called Give It All To Him.

3 books that have kept me awake...

....So I really liked all 3 of them.

I so LOVED this one. It's about an 11 year old boy 
who asks a business woman on the streets of New York if she could spare some change. 
At first she walked away from him, but then turned around 
and asked if he would like to go to McDonalds. 
She continued to take him to eat every Monday for years. 
It  also progressed into her making a bag lunch for him to take to school each day.

Such a well written book that flowed along, and was hard to put down. 
This all began in 1986 and now all these years later it's humbling
the influence this one 35 year old woman had on a very poor, hungry, and suffering boy.

I'm happy my friend Kristi mentioned this next one on Facebook awhile back.
I actually read this several months ago but I still think about it.
Lucy wrote this 25 years before her death, so her story only goes up to 1964.
No one even knew she wrote this until after her death in 1989 when her daughter discovered it. 
Lucy lived quite a remarkable life and had several obstacles in her childhood 
and also enormous health issues to over come. 
She writes much about her stormy marriage to Desi Arnaz, long years of yearning for  children, 
and her friendship with Vivian Vance (Ethel), and filming the I Love Lucy show. Interesting!

And this one I read a few months ago was also a page turner.
A great story of love and family.
An inspiring story of missing what one use to have.
I was tired for the few days I was reading this book, too.
It's hard to make myself go to sleep when the story is so good.

Watch Ty get his mission call!

Six days ago my nephew Ty opened his mission call. 
He's that little guy in the lower right corner.
Don't worry, he's grown up now... 

Brock drew this portrait of Ty's family several years ago. 
L to R top row: Jeff, Peggy
                         Jake, Colt, Carly
                         Samantha, Kaidy, Ty  

Take a look from last Monday evening...

I like having him with me anyway.

When I asked him tonight, "Do you want to go shopping with me?"....

He should have said he wanted to stay home and watch the game. 
I would have been totally and completely fine with that. 

But no, instead he said, "Sure I'd love to."

Is it any wonder I love this man?

Funny thing is, he didn't even notice I was taking his picture.
And I have no idea what game he was watching.

Spread the word, to end the word!

Do you see Elora's determined walk?

It was with that same purpose she gave a talk to her entire school about her sister Cami. 
She pleaded with her classmates to spread the word to end the word. 

Her mother also gave one of the most compassionate and heart felt talks 
I have ever heard in my life.
I truly wish she could speak in every school across our country.

Like Erin explained in her talk, retarded is a clinical word used by doctors. 
But it is also a slang some people use to mean, "bad or gross." 
They had a large picture of Cami displayed on screen for all the children to see.
 Erin referred to the picture and said, "Cami is not bad or gross" so we should not use that word.

You can bet this Grandma was in tears.

Just by coincidence, Cami turned 8 years old the day of the assembly.

I do believe this assembly was a game changer for some. Hopefully for many.

I wish I had a video to show of yesterday,
but I do have another one that is outstanding.

I first heard about it on the Dr Laura program. 
A little boy who took his disabled brother with him on a race,
even though he knew he could not "win" pulling him from behind.


Have you seen this movie? What did you think?

We saw it today and were not all that impressed. 
I may be in the minority since it's getting good reviews.

It's about the residents in a home for retired musicians. 
So much they could have done with this story line.
 But it lacked depth, it lacked some heart. 
It had a little heart,....there were a few tender scenes,  
but I expected more from senior citizens (I'm talking about the ones at least 20 years older than me.) 
They have so much to teach us and impress on us, decades of life experience to share. 
This movie would have been a great avenue to do this.

Perhaps I got hung up on 2 particular scenes of bad language. 
I know this is how the media sees life, but not where I come from.
 Besides, even if one thinks it's okay to say whatever
I would just expect people to have a bit more class as they get older.

I think my oldest son had some really good thoughts about language in movies. 
He use to write a movie review column for our local paper. 
I've kept this all these years....from 1995.

Coincidentally Dustin Hoffman was the producer of the movie we saw today. 
Apparently he has not changed much, and he's now 75.

A gender update

Karen and Tyler, and also McKenna and McKay
found out the sex of their babies. 

Guess who is having the pink one, and who is having the blue one?
Okay, I'll tell you.

Richie is getting a little brother.
Richie is actually older now and with more hair, but I love this picture of Karen and Rich.

And Grant is getting a sister.
It's hard to get parents in the same picture being someone needs to work the camera.

And, they are still due 5 days apart in July. 
And, they will both be born in Oregon.
And, their Dads will both be working in Portland for the same company, at least for this summer.

The last time these cousins were together they looked like this!
 Carly gave them their Sunday bests.

Good times are coming again!

How Grandparents are different than Parents

One day last week, after taking the twins to the store with me to get a few extra art supplies....

They wanted to get right into their projects as soon as we returned home.

I told them first they needed to put away their pajamas that were strewn all over the family room. 

Jonas said, "I don't want to do that."
Téa suddenly slumps over to one side, while her arm is dramatically dangling and said,
"My arm is too weak."

Then I said in a very matter of fact parental voice,
"If you don't put your pajamas in the playroom, 
we won't be doing art today." 

With that they both quickly picked up their jammies and ran into the playroom.
Good. Task was done.

So as they were happily drawing and creating...

I walked down the hall and saw this.

 I called to Den in the next room, "Come look what they did!"
He appeared and said, "They did exactly what you told them to do. They put them in the playroom."

We both laughed and talked about how cute it was 
seeing their clothes in a heap right inside the door way. 

I didn't touch their pile. 
 I loved it too much to disturb it. 
For the rest of that day we just all stepped over it.

And that is the difference between a Grandparent and a Parent.

Watch my nephew get his mission call!

See this family?
That's my sister Robin, her husband Dave 
and their 4 daughters and 1 son. 

Notice the 1 son. 

He got his mission call 2 days ago 
and we got to be there for it. 
And to make it even more special, 
he chose to open it up at 
Grandpa and Susan's apartment.

Take a look. 

Do you see why I love 2 year olds?

I got to have this precious 2 year old for a good part of 2 days, and I loved every minute of it.

I think my favorite part was when Violet saw me flush a tissue down the toilet.
She peered over the bowl waving to the tissue as it was going down, and said, "Bye, I love you."

 Thank goodness for grandchildren, 
because I read THIS POST on BLOOM and it made me want to have another baby.
(Loved her ideas too, except for the beer and wine, of course.)

Update on the mysterious package left on my porch

Thank you very much for all those who took the time to respond about my package and what to do with it! I really appreciate it! Some great insight you have about the mailing system. Some I didn't know, or hadn't thought of before.

So I found Sheryl F on Facebook and we have been corresponding back and forth. She lives nearly 7 hours from here, up closer to the Oregon border. Now I know this is going to sound strange, but it turns out she grew up less than a mile from the house I grew up in. She graduated from Hoover High 2 years after me, in 1974. And not only did she graduate from Hoover the same year as my brother John and my cousin Donna, but she also was friends with Donna in elementary school, and she remembers her coming to her birthday slumber parties.

Of all the places her package could land! On my porch. Near to her childhood home.

I still have not heard from the company yet that she ordered her package from in the first place. They sent me a form letter (email) on Thursday stating they would get back to me within 1 business day. To me that meant by Friday, but to them, well maybe they will respond by Monday. Or never. I'll let you know.

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