Friday, November 25, 2005

Please stand by...

And forgive me as I take just a few more days to get around to blogging.

Thanks to you all for hanging in there with me, I am grateful for your reader-loyalty and friendship. Hawaii was terrific and I have many posts coming. Thanksgiving with Thor's family was worth a few posts as well. Why the delay?

Last Friday a sister in our ward was crossing the street at dusk with her 11, 6 and 3 year old children. The 11 and 3 year old were hit by a passing car. The children were life-flighted to the local trauma center, by car 1 hour away. The youngest died during the flight and the 11 year old was in a coma and near death on arrival. Our Bishop gave a blessing to both. The 11 yr.old revived and began complaining ten minutes after the blessing; a true miracle. The funeral was this morning/afternoon.

During the funeral we (leadership) were informed that another sister in our ward had just been informed that her one year old grandbaby had drowned in a "large dog" water bowl after crawling out to the patio unnoticed. Another baby funeral in two days.

Above this are complications that may involve incredible timing, teaching and understanding for our ward as a whole. Too much to take in for many.

I will post as soon as possible. Thanks you guys, you're the best.

p.s. thanks for feeding Larry. Anyone playing with Walter?

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Thursday, November 10, 2005


Originally uploaded by hokulea.

S'mee is outta here! Thor and I are off to Oahu (this place to be exact)! It is fortunate for us that his company is sending him for a conference and it just happens to be our 29th wedding anniversary.

We will be gone for about 10 days. We had to save up for quite some time to afford my ticket and expenses, but with Thor's half paid by the company, how could we pass this opportunity up? We are pretty excited and hope to take a ton of photos. We will be going to the North Shore a lot to visit the temple (wahoo!) and also to see the Van's Triple Crown of Surfing, which should be thrilling to watch.

If the computer is working well there I will blog, if not, ALOHA! until I get back.

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Wednesday, November 09, 2005


I have been tagged by Lolly! This meme is why each of the 24 hours in a day is important or significant to me. This is really weird, because I really enjoy reading memes and have only been asked to participate in one, which, once I figured out the what and how, was terrific fun for me. While reading Lolly's responses, I was all "ohhh, that is so great!" and "man, this is so cool that she remembers this stuff." Which led to the incredible and audible gasp when I saw my name at the bottom of the list! (surprise and happy = gasp!) S'mee has a crumby memory when it comes to dates and times, but for what it's worth...Thanks Lolly! This should be fun!

Currently I have "no schedule" per say, because all the offspring are off doing their own gig and -frankly- no one needs s'mee to really get anything done at a specific time. (ahh the life!) But when that is the case, you become the gal who has no schedule and can pick up slack, which can make for an interesting day.

12pm Normally, about the time I begin to miss Thor and give him a call, because I know at the office- this is officially lunch for an hour. If Thor is not in a meeting, we chat and catch up (because it has been, what?, like 5 hours since I talked to him?) About once a week I get to lunch with #2, his wife and the baby boy... which is great. As the kids all began to leave the house this seemed to be the hour when I would get to be with that one "senior" or grad and we would eat everyday together and bond. It was cool and I miss those times. When they were little this is when they would come home from kindergarten and I would be way happy!

This is also the hour Thor promised me that #2 would be born before. I might add, before I killed myself with one more minute of back labour and was hauled off to the nut house. As promised, #2 came at 11:56 or there-abouts, because, yes, I am the mom that doesn't remember when her kids came into the world...I was just happy they did, finally.

1pm This is the "recheck the 'to do' list" for the day; which changes every day. Assessing where I need to shift gears in order to get 'whatever' done on time. This is also the time "scheduled" for what seem to be -lately- endless phone calls for R.S. and the ward. The time when we found out #1 was really sick and would be for 6 years ( he was a "lifer" then tricked all the dr.s and went into remission and then really showed 'em and was "recovered"). The time of mantinee performances to see my 7 year old ballerina perform with a "professional" company. Soccer matches on Saturday for all five. Drives out to the desert to rock climb.

2pm!!! The time the kids would get home from school. Mandatory dancing for at least ten minutes. Time to let loose, have a laugh, complain about school, get something to eat, have some fun. Homework could wait until after the fun of being FREE AT LAST!!! (have I ever mentioned how badly I hated having my kids at school? I really should have home schooled, but with s'mee as a teacher they would have become grown idiots with only museum educations and a lot of beach time. S'mee just would have ignored all the rules and books and discipline of learning and we would have been wild and dumb.)

3pm Usually checkin' that schedule again for last minute follow through. Prep a snack if the kids had friends over, or help when the kids needed something for a project or whatever. A drive to the store if they needed something we didn't have. The time of day I found out #1's ear was torn off in a soccer match. Now that's given one up for the team!

4pm Check the flower bed. Water if it needs it, weed also. But not every day, just when I see things happening out there. If dinner is going to be a production this is the hour to get things started. Often the house got quiet and I would find myself in the back room grabbing a book or searching for things online for lessons or whatever. Kind of everyone in the house doing research at the same time.

5pm This is the time Thor's office officially closes for the day and so I get a call from him to let me know what's up and when he'll be home. If he doesn't have any meetings, then he'll be home in an hour and a half or so and this makes S'mee a very happy girl.

6pm Now-a-days, #3 gets home right about now and we chat briefly about her day while she gears up for her evening. She has school all day and then turns into the Relief Society President and Institute Leader by night. She is crazy busy and amazing. Sometimes, like tonight it's just she and S'mee so we grab a bite to eat out someplace and enjoy the time together before she flies.

7pm Thor, on an early night is home and we get to see each other and take care of the house stuff. And by "we" I mean I watch him do all the bills and check his mail and yak at him while he tries to concentrate on stuff. I catch him up on the kids and any weird things that have happened during the day; and I get his version of the day at his job with all the variants that go on there. We schedule stuff and plan for the kids and do "what not". When the kids were little this was their bedtime and the rituals began. Baths, stories and family prayer. It was good to have them in bed early for their sleep and our time alone. Later years would bring the time of performances for ballet and oboe, depending on the daughter.

8pm Final clean up of the house, assessing what I need to do tamale, and many times still working on church stuff, while Thor works at his desk. If Thor has time, we'll watch a movie or some t.v. and just have some fun together. Many nights lately, this is the time the kids come over with the baby boy and we can gather around him and watch him grow and pretty much entertain us.

9pm Now, if we have family over, this is story time and bed- gettin' ready time for the baby boy. I love it that he climbs on my lap and we read books over and over and over until his mommy says it is enough and he and his daddy go crawl into our bed for nigh-night. I tend to begin the shut down myself, and if there isn't "something - anything" to keep me busy, I will begin to fade. If I have work, I can get a lot done now as it helps the creativity flow for some reason. I have started way too many projects at this time of night.

It was about this time of night that my Gramma sat down on her bed, asked for a drink of water and died. That was her to a tee, very neat, no complications. Bathed, dressed for a long rest and took it.

10pm This is about the time I went into "serious" labour with all the kids. All of them, except #2 were at least two day labours and I mean 5 minutes apart- big fat mean labours. # 2 was almost 12 hours to the minute start to finish, but all BACK labour. ugh. All five "natural", but then again, there ain't nothin' natural about it when I look back on it! I have instructed all who will listen- to adopt.

11pm Lights out for S'mee whether or not I want usually. I am knocked out by then. Back in the day I was a night owl and did some of my best work in the still of the night. If Thor isn't home I can not sleep. In that case I will stay up for days and this time of day begins the "projects". Sometimes it was repainting or wall papering the house. Other times it was sewing all manner of clothing or making patterns for new clothes coming up. Lately if I can't sleep there is oil paint involved, and canvases.

12am 30 or so years ago this was the hour that S'mee and Thor decided to "date". The first date being a New Year's Eve dance at the church. After the dance, the youth in our ward went on a bus to see the Rose Parade. I remember being so scared that he wouldn't like me or that I would be stupid; or worse yet, that he wouldn't show up. The bus was freezing. We sat about a third of the way back on the passenger side and talked all the way to Pasadena, while everyone else on the bus slept. The bishop's remark upon arrival was that "Thor should try to get in a nap before the parade...He was bleeding to death... through his eyes." Sleep we did. Both of us and about five other people took separate benches and slept right through the parade. From then on there were those "funny" people who would remind us that we "had to get married now...hahaha... because, you know, you slept together on your first date! hahah!" Yeah real funny. ugh. A year later, on that first date anniversary, Thor asked me to get married. I was 17 and he was 18. We went to his brother's house and at 12:00 we told everyone we were engaged. On November 12, we will be celebrating our 29th anniversary.

1:00am Thinking about this is weird. A lot of things happened with the boys during this hour. #1 was brought home by the cops one night about this hour, "Because he looked suspicious." Yup, nothing says criminal intent like a short blonde haircut, button up shirt, and driving a '78 Monte Carlo. You know it's bad when one of the cops came back up to the porch and apologized for his partner's behavior. Dork. #3 went into surgery and finally came out of it about this time. When he was 16 he fell through a glass table and cut his arm to the bone. He severed all the systems in his dominant arm and lost use of his hand. Long story short: he's a miracle and has use of everything. This was also the hour that #3 finally decided that three weeks of false labour was enough and he'd get started on the real thing; almost being born in a hospital basement.

Another good thing about 1am: this is the proper time to teach one's kids about correct techniques in "tp"-ing. When each of my kids entered Mutual (or YM YW or whatever it is called now) I would gather some of their friends and we would go "tp-ing". In our area this is considered a grand gesture and compliment. The better the job, the more you are loved. So in order to compliment -normally a teacher- we would do a great job. One time during the tutorial we actually had someone drive by, then turn around and drive by again very slowly. They stopped in front of the house and then asked one of the kids to go over to the car. I thought for sure we were busted by a neighbor. Instead it was a neighbor saying what a great job we were doing and wanted to take pictures in the morning. cool.

2:00am Every year in August we have Meteor Showers. It is this time in the morning when we all got up and took blankets out to the driveway to lay down on the cement and watch the showers. Especially #5, who was a freak about it. There were always contests to see who could see the most stars fall in a given amount of time. Throughout the entire year, if you wake up at this time you can go outside and look to the heavens. Chances are, if you wait a while, you will see a falling star. We do have the greatest sky at night.

3:00am I think the only thing of significance here is the driving in the car we used to do to try and get a baby to go to sleep. Once we got a dryer, we saved on car rides. The laundry room was right off the master bedroom. We would pop the baby in a hamper basket with warm towels, place it on top of the dryer, and set the dryer on continual air fluff. The noise and rhythm of the dryer would be just enough to calm the baby down and we could get some sleep!

4am Time to get up for 'cemetery'. For the years I taught cemetery this was the torture hour. I would wake up and barf. Shower then barf again. Get dressed and barf. Every once and a while I would open the building up, set up my class and barf once more before the kids arrived. Cemetery began at 5:45 and it was just my body's way of saying, "What the heck?" Every morning for those years I would barf. It's weird; but if S'mee gets up before 7 am, s'mee barfs. I am truly allergic to mornings.

5am There are days when I really have a hard time believing there is a 5 in the morning, but there you go. This is the time we try to leave for vacations and trips that will be long. It rarely happens, but hey, you can always make a goal.

6am When the house normally gets up and running now-a-days. Cemetery always started at 5:45 and school-even grade school began at 7am, so when the offspring were in school things happened a lot earlier, but now? not so much. THANK YOU SWEET MERCY! #3 leaves around this time each day, and Thor leaves this time most days. I am up about 2.8 seconds after Thor leaves the bedroom. I cannot sleep alone and even when he sneaks out, I am outta bed by the time he gets on his computer. Weird.

7am ...and a hush fell over the room. This is when I get on the computer, The morning news is too harsh or too silly for S'mee, so I avoid it at all cost. (well, most of the time) When the kids were little this is the time they would rush the bedroom on a Saturday and we would all (7 of us) stay in bed and talk, play steam roller, and have good dad time until it was way too late for breakfast. I miss those times, although the thought of all those adults rushing the same bed now is nutso!

8am I check the mental schedule and figure out the day. Most days I am biding time for things to open or at least be useful to S'mee. It drives me crazy to wait, so this is an impatient hour for S'mee. Laundry gets started, house work and junk, or projects that need attention. Check the flower bed. Back in the day this was the 'scheduled' time for personal study.

9am Yeah! Life begins to feel good at this hour. I am SO slow to feel good in the morning, so about now I am gearin' up. This is the hour we went through for our endowment, cool. This is the preferred hour for beginning my Sunday schedule. I like it early in the day. This is the start of Saturdays at our house, before 9 most everyone is lazy and chatty. Nice.

10am This is the time of day when I began to miss my kids when they were in school and secretly hope they would call home sick. In high school this would be the hour when we would "plan" for them to be called home sick so we could ditch and go do things. I know I am a horrid parent for LYING to state officials about the physical conditions of MY kids, but sometimes it felt like the only way I could have them. The state got their money, I got my kids, and my kids got some stress release.

11am Hopefully, this is the time I am finished running around.... but it never is. If I have to go out - I want to be back home at 11. Why? Because after 11 the day gets real fast and wasted. A good time for VT routes. Back in high school this was the perfect time to be released from school to attend "funerals". I had a lot of "funerals" that I needed to go to in high school, um, because, um, well, um it was the first snow in the mountains, or I was going to me Thor's brother, or because someone said the storm caused really cool waves at Huntington, yeah those funerals.

Heather (dreams smile at me) because she is young and interesting and has a unique view on life... Mark (Mo'Boy) because he is wise and sweet and I am sure will be full of good stories to share... and Susan (Strange Pulse) because she is nothing if not honest...

Hah! You three - You're it! Your turn to explain the meme!

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Thursday, November 03, 2005

Halloween PG-5/10

O.k. so I am still posting about Halloween. It's just that I really really like Halloween. I don't care much for the chopped off limb - bloody "Carrie" - chain saw massacre type of Halloween, I prefer the friendly scary stuff, like a good non threatening graveyard, with a few singing heads and ghosties that are little kid friendly (meaning they make they tiny ones nervous, but the 5-10 year olds very happy being "scared").

(cue Rod Serling) Imagine if you will and normal house in a normal neighborhood. The air is crisp and the full moon is shining over the styrofoam headstones with just enough for little witches to make out the names of the deceased. An ivy covered fence and a creaky gate welcomes down a path lit by paper luminaria and floating ghosts made of glow in the dark balloons. Music plays softly in the background, and just as you enter the porch a swoosh of fog covers tiny Frankenstein feet and jack-o-lanterns carved and scenting the air with the smell of melted wax.

Normally we only get about 5 or six little goblins and then come the too old boys, (about 4-5 groups of 4-5) with scary masks shoved up onto their foreheads, bloody baseball bats, and with costumes that are no more than "blood" covered school clothes. After they bang the door loudly and yell at the top of their lungs until you get to the door, they look disappointed that they only receive what we have to offer. Then come the mothers with no teeth and tiny infants too young to eat solid food. We usually get about three of them begging for candy "for the baby".

This year we prepared well enough, but the scene never made it out of the garage. #3 turned 23 in late October, but with schedule being what they are for a young student, her (family) party was postponed until the 31st - Halloween. She wanted to eat out with the other siblings and so we had a terrific time at her favorite place. By the time we got home, Halloween was over and the block was dark. On a good note, we didn't have to clean up any broken pumpkin, eggs or have our luminaria tossed in the street.

The bad part of this year? Having a ton of baby play-dough packs left over. Leftover candy has never been a problem!

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Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Buzz Lightyear!

Buzz Lightyear!
Originally uploaded by S'mee.
Unfortunately my grandson is in the witness protection program and so he constantly has that blue ball over his face. But he went to all the Halloween festivities as Buzz Lightyear and proclaimed "To Fin ty and Bond!", which if you are unfamiliar with Toy Story just sounds like a new line of designer clothes. But I digress. He was so cute! His PaPa J. (mommy's daddy) picked him up in this photo so he could fly (or at least fall with flare). A lousy photo shop took PaPa J. out of the picture and most of the background. Hopefully I will get a tutor in photoshop and make next years pictures really cool!

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Originally uploaded by foodchronicles.

I would like to be the first to welcome Cooper Chronicles! Chronicler got me started and has been blogging for quite sometime (Food Chronicles); but now has a more personal blog. She'll be blogging about her first love: Mini Coopers, her family life, crafting, food, and whatever else pops into her life ant any given moment. Stop over and take a look!

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