Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Parenting 101

While Arden is in preschool on Wednesday mornings, Maile accompanies me to a parenting class on campus taught by the students. I find it highly amusing that none of them have children.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Mountains of Potatoes

Well, I hate to say this, but (excuse time) I don't write in my blog very often because I am afraid
the average reader would find my life terribly mundane. However, I guess that is why reality T.V. and peeking in people's lighted living room windows at night is so popular--people like to know how other people live their lives. Besides that, I have determined that I need to make my blog more for me, anyways, so, here we go. Turning over a new leaf. (How many times have I said that one?!)

So this last weekend was quite enjoyable. Uncle Steve and Andy came down to visit for a few days, and it is always so much fun to have them here. Friday night, Steve accompanied us to our annual stake fall harvest festival. It was nice, but afterwards, I was lamenting the fact to Curtis and Alli that our stake is so unoriginal in its activities. We do the exact same thing every year, and not to sound rude, but I think people are looking for something a little different, as evidenced by the very poor showing...probably about 50 people came from our whole stake. Anyway, I should not have opened my big mouth, because a couple days ago Sister Summers called me and asked me to be in charge of our ward Christmas program. Serves me right, I suppose.

Saturday, we went up to the Williams' (our dear friends) parent's lodge in Island Park and helped them cut wood for the winter. Their house is heated the old fashioned way! I have to say, I love doing hard manuel labor like that. Not only is it invigorating, but cutting wood brings back good memories from my childhood of doing the same thing. I loved when Dad would read books to us in the winter by the fireplace, and we would sit around cracking and eating (and being) nuts. Fun, fun!

Later Saturday afternoon, Steve and I went out to the country in search of some farm run potatoes to purchase. We found some, and looking in those potato sheds, I have to say, I have never seen so many potatoes in one place in my entire life! Mountains of them! I asked the farmer how long it took to truck all the potatoes out one of their sheds, and he told me about five days. Wow!

After getting potatoes, we were invited to join a bunch of the college kids at Craigo's for dinner. Cousin Kristin had come up for a visit to surprise Cherstin (Curtis' sister), so it was defintely a cause for celebration. It reminded me of the last time a bunch of us cousins got together to eat--we went to Los Hermanos in Provo. The meal stood out to me because I convinced the waitress to pretend that the $50 bill Kristin paid for her meal with was counterfeit. The look on Kristin's face was priceless and will forever be etched in my memory as one of the funnier things I have seen.

In other news, our ward calling is going well. I think I am actually starting to enjoy it. Curtis and I are the nursery leaders in our ward. I generally dislike babysitting small children if they are not related to me, but I have been doing my best to enjoy it, and praying that I will be able to love and serve the kids. It's working. (Boy, I sound like I had a bad attitude! Not to worry-I have repented.) This Sunday we had a fun lesson...we talked about Lehi's dream from the Book of Mormon, and how the scriptures are the word of God, and part of the iron rod that keeps us on the straight and narrow. I had made this big cardboard cutout of a tree, and we had the kids tape leaves and fruit on it. Then we draped some string around the room (our iron rod) and had the kids follow it to the tree through the mists of darkness (our fog machine). The kids loved it! That fog machine has been one of the best splurges we have ever invested in. We have used it for lots of family home evening lessons as well!

So, more later. See, this is one of the problems I run into when trying to write...I could just keep going and going and going. Blah, blah, blah, that's me!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Quirky People

College life is full of quirky people, and I do not hesitate to admit
that I was once one of those quirky people. The older I become, the
more it seems that the newer one is to college, the more quirky he or
she is. (I use the word "quirky" in the kindest sense of the word.) I
have noticed that in general, as one progresses in one's college
career, it seems that one gets sucked into the "homework" vortex, at
least if one is an over-achiever, as I happened to be and now regret.
Let me explain in hopes that all the new college-goers out there will
fully appreciate and revel in the joy of being quirky while they have
the chance.
So picture this in your mind. You get dropped off for the first time
at college by your parents, after the typical trip to stuff-mart and
the grocery store for college essentials (which of course your parents
pay for, that being a traditional college tradition.) You have just
graduated from high school, where most of the people are quirky
anyway, and you had fit right in. You are a bit worried as a college
freshman, because you are now supposed to be mature, and you have
heard that in college, you actually have to study to pass your
classes. Then, you walk into the dorm where you will be staying, full
of trepidation about meeting your first roommates. After the
preliminary "hellos" and "nice-to-meet-yous," and after everyone's
parents have left following tearful goodbyes, you sit down with your
roommates for "THE MEETING," where you discuss arrangements regarding
important issues, such as the dire punishments that will befall those
who are caught stealing someone else's milk, and who has to buy the
paper plates and plasticware when every single dish in the house is
dirty. As you talk, you discover with some amazement, that you should
fit in just fine, as your roommates seem to be just as quirky and
weird as you are, perhaps even weirder! Let me give you a case in
point. My younger sister came and visited me at college for a few
days when I was a freshman. She was shocked and amazed at how
quirky…O.K., for the sake of honesty, she termed it "immature," us
college kids were. My slender blond, blue-eyed roommate had just
dumped her boyfriend whom she had dated for a whole three weeks, the
eighth in a long string of guys who were madly in love with her. I
walked into our apartment after a tedious and boring algebra class
that my sister had politely declined to attend. As I entered the
apartment, I noticed the smell of rotting fish emanating from various
places throughout our apartment. I walked over to the trash can,
thinking that someone was in big trouble for not taking out the trash
after dinner four days ago. The trash can was almost completely empty
other then a wadded up piece of paper with a big red D- peeking up and
winking lewdly at me. As I sat contemplating the nearly empty trash
can, trying to determine another possible source of the smell, I heard
a shriek from the bathroom where another of my roommates had just
stepped into--then promptly out of—the shower. She was livid and
smelled like beef. Upon further investigation, it turned out that my
roomate's ex-boyfriend, (self-named "Ben the Bandit") along with his
roommate henchmen, had broken into our apartment while we were gone,
deposited open cans of sardines at strategic hidden places throughout,
and placed beef bullion cubes inside the shower head, oblivious to the
thought that perhaps completely innocent roommates would be the
unlucky recipients of Ben the Bandit's wrath. Where my sister was at
the time all this scheming was going on, I have yet to get a straight
answer to. She admits she was in the apartment, but claimed ignorance
of the "no boys behind THE INVISIBLE LINE" rule of BYU-I, telling me
the boys had simply asked to use the bathroom, but I have my
suspicions that she found this situation highly amusing and was in on
the whole deal.
Anyway, when the last of the sardine cans had finally been retrieved,
and the shower heads had been sanitized, my roommates and I held a
hastily called roommate council, where it was determined that we just
could not allow the culprits to pull off such a devious deed
unpunished. It was decided that we would go on a raid of our own.
Unfortunately for us, we were in such a rush to exact our revenge that
we neglected to plan carefully, and our kool-aid powder in the towels
and crushed cornflakes under the sheets were a poor excuse for what we
could and should have come up with. Not to mention we failed to look
on stalker net to find out the boys' schedules, and yes, they walked
in on us. We embarrassingly beat a hasty retreat, threatening that we
would return, but the boys did not seem too worried.
Lest you have forgotten my point to all this while reading such an
enthralling account of freshman quirkiness, it is, again, enjoy it
while you can! The longer you are in college, the more homework you
have. Then you get into your upper division classes, where each
college professor assumes his or her class is the only class you are
taking, and assigns homework accordingly. It just gets worse from

Apples, Apples, Everywhere! I Can't Escape...HELP!

Welcome, the canning maniac. This fall I have done peaches, nectarines, chicken, pears, pie apples, applesauce, plum juice, and apple juice, and I think a few others I can't recall at the moment. Shirley Reynolds brought her kids over yesterday while she went shopping, and her kids and I did yet more apples. Of course all the kids had to have a couple apples just to munch on, and today I have been finding half-eaten apples all over my house. I think I have collected them all, then one will turn up in between the cushions of the couch, or at the bottom of the slide. Hopefully I will find them all before any of them go rotten.

Changing the subject, I have a complaint about being married. (Yup, only one!) It seems like once you are married, it is forbidden to have fun dances as church activities any more. Our stake hosts a Valentine's Day dance and a Harvest Festival/dance every year, and it's mostly jazz, which, frankly, unless you happen to be over 65, is not that fun to dance to in my opinion. I guess I will have to start having my own dances. A disco ball is moving up on my priority list, I decided.