Thursday, October 29, 2009


Submit - A quantity of goods or cargo that are shipped together.
October 29, 2009

This is my second (or is it third?) shipment of Christmas stuff. If I can stay out of stores at Christmas time, I am one happy lady. It never quite works out that way, though. There is always "one last thing" (about twenty times over) that I need to go to Walmart or Target or (eek!!) the mall to get. But I do try to avoid it by shopping early and shopping online. I haven't yet ordered anything from Amazon, which is typically my favorite and most frequented Christmas store (thank you, free super saver shipping!). I'm sure I'll get there before long.

On a totally different topic, here's what I don't understand. At 2:00 this afternoon I stopped at the bank. I parked my car in the EMPTY parking lot. Please understand that by empty, I mean there was NOT ANOTHER CAR anywhere in the parking lot. I guess the employees park in the back, because my dirty van was the ONLY car in the lot. So I go in the bank, deposit my check, take a roll of smarties, and go back to my car. Now there is another car there - PARKED IN THE SPOT RIGHT NEXT TO MINE, and almost too close for me to get in my car. I only have to ask - W.T.H???? Are you kidding? There were at least 20 other spots, many closer to to door, and he/she parks in that spot?? So since I was next to the curb on the other side, I had to do a 10-point back up maneuver to get out. Seriously, people. Pick another spot. So then I had to go drop off the car loan payment at another bank and I couldn't go through the drive up because I had forgotten to bring my payment slip and don't know the account number nor the payment amount. Different bank, same scenario. But this time, at least there was one other car in the parking lot - at the totally opposite end. Again, I parked next to the curb, not necessarily close to the door. Went in, took care of my business, came out and the only other car was again parked right next to mine. At least it wasn't so close as at the other bank, but really, what's up people? It's like when you are the only one in a movie theater and a giant headed person comes and, of all the empty seats in the theater, chooses the one right in front of you. So just so you know, my van is a silver Freestar, always dirty inside and out, with a vanilaroma air freshner hanging from the mirror. DON'T PARK NEXT TO ME IF THE PARKING LOT IS OPEN! That is the only warning I intend to give.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Dried, Loom

Dried - free from liquid or moisture; lacking natural or normal moisture or depleted of water; no longer wet.
October 27, 2009

Yep, still with the apples. I have dried a bunch and stuck them in the freezer. They work very nicely for a FHE treat Apple Brown Betty when I have failed to plan anything. And it is very much getting to be Apple Brown Betty season. I better stock up on Cool Whip.

Loom - an apparatus, worked by hand or mechanically, for weaving yarn into a textile.
October 28, 2009

Taylor is working on a hat. She frequently kills time, especially during the fall/winter, knitting hats. It comes in quite handy since the kids are forever losing their hats at school or a friend's house. We have LOTS of hats. One year I had the Activity Day girls make hats and we took them to PCMC. I don't know whether they kept them or re-gifted them, but it doesn't matter so long as they got to someone who needs them. Once we donated them to a shelter. It's such an easy little thing to do. I don't know how fast Taylor is, but I can do a hat in about 2 hours, less if it's for a baby.

I felt just horrible yesterday. It started in the morning and got progressively worse as the day went on. I was freezing all day at work, then came home and curled up in a quilt. I still wasn't warm enough so I got a heating pad to tuck in my quilt with me. Between the coughing, the aches, and the chills, I didn't have a great night's sleep, even with my best friend, NyQuil. I am feeling a lot better today. My head still hurts, and I have a little cough but not like yesterday. When I cough now, my sides ache from yesterdays coughing fits. Hopefully the worst is over and I can put that behind me.

If I had any pride at all, I wouldn't admit this, but as it turns out, I have no pride. So I was playing Wii with the kids tonight, and we have had the Wii for almost a year. In all that time, whenever I step on it says (very rudely, I might add) "You're obese!" So for the first time in a year-ish, I stepped on tonight, and it said, "You're overweight!" Most normal people wouldn't think of that as a compliment, but I started jumping up and down and screaming "I'm overweight! I'm overweight!" How sick is that??

Monday, October 26, 2009


Aged - Advanced in years; old.
October 26, 2009

I love my dad. He's quirky and weird and all that that embarrassed me to tears as a teen, but now those are the things I love best about him. It was his birthday today. What do you get the old man who has everything? Why, apple treats, of course! I made him an apple pie and took him some warm applesauce that I had just made. I've been giving him food for years now, and he seems to like it. He retired before my mom did, so while she was still working I would make up a pot of chili or soup and put it into single serve containers and freeze it so he had something to eat for lunch. Sometimes I make him bread and jam. He does love the home-baked stuff!

We went out and picked apples again today, another 5 boxes. Finally, it is starting to look like we are clearing off the trees! We got everything off that we could reach by standing on the ground or on a lawn chair. Jack tried to climb up in the tree, but since so many of the branches have broken, I was fearful of sending him up too far. The rest will require a ladder to get to. I got another 8 quarts of chunky applesauce today. I may have to go back through this blog to see how much we have done. I haven't kept a running total, and the applesauce is stored here, there and everywhere and I don't want to hunt it all down to count it. Plus we have eaten some, and given some away. AND I ran out of jars . . . AGAIN. Off to Walmart I go tomorrow for more jars.

I found out tonight that my neice Kassie is expecting. That was exciting news! This will be their first baby, the first one of the next generation. The baby is due in July, and we are hoping she has as comfortable and happy a pregnancy as possible, and that her husband knows what's good for him and pampers her properly.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Excessive, Endless, Sampler

This branch broke off a while ago. We've lost several branches this fall, but I think this is the biggest one. I don't know how well the break shows up on the picture, but it was a pretty large branch that broke.

Excessive - Beyond normal limits.
October 23, 2009
Apples, apples everywhere. We finally got through all the picked apples in the garage and had to go out and pick more. I picked a five gallon bucket, mostly off the ground, and didn't even make a dent. I told Lane tonight when I was putting away the weekends applesauce, that I think he's going to have to build an addition to the house to store all this applesauce! But as I always say, it's comforting to know we won't die right away! Oh, and by the way, if you are on my Christmas list - guess what you're getting! And if you aren't on my Christmas list, you might be this year!

Endless - Being or seeming to be without end or limit; boundless.
October 24, 2009
We are all starting to wonder if it will ever end. Last week was so crazy that Saturday was the only day we had to work on apples, so here's to hoping this week will be better. Tuesday and Saturday are the only crazy days, right now anyway, so hopefully we can plug along through them. We are all getting a little apple-weary, but we'll carry on.

Sampler - A variety, an assortment.
October 25, 2009
On Saturday I did 2 quarts of apple juice concentrate (right), 10 quarts of slow-simmered, chunky applesauce (center), and 2 quarts of smooth applesauce. I'm not a huge fan of the smooth applesauce, but that's what comes from the left-over apples that have made the juice. I can't bring myself to throw them out so we put them through the food mill.
Today was our Primary program at church. The kids always do an amazing job, even though every year on the Saturday practice it seems like it will never come together, it always does. It's nice to have that over with for another year!

Thursday, October 22, 2009


Belated - Having been delayed; done or sent too late.
October 22, 2009

I finished up gifts for my neices, Karlee and Madison. Karlee's birthday was in September and Madi's is next week. So I am WAY late on Karlee, and I will be late on Madi by the time I get it delivered to her. I hope they don't mind to much. As the years go by, I find myself getting later and later and later . . . and I have no excuse to make, I won't even try.

I snuck in a good 20 minute nap while Taylor was at piano today. I wait in the car while the kids have their lesson, and the car was just the right temperature today, parked in the sun, and I dozed off. I jumped abouta mile when Taylor opened the car door, but it sure felt good to have a quick nap.

I'm so looking forward to the weekend. I have the primary program practice on Saturday morning, but the rest of my Saturday is free which means apples, apples, and more apples.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009


Braces - an appliance that corrects dental irregularities.
October 21, 2009

The BIG DAY finally arrived, and Jack got his braces. Lane took him over to get the deed done, and Lane says Jack was pretty nervous until he found out that it wasn't so bad after all. He even got a new Tshirt from the orthodontist, and apparently a Tshirt is all it takes to make everything right in the world again. He is trying to act all ashamed of having braces, but any idiot can tell that he really thinks he's all that.

A few years ago I attended a cooking class at Maceys and they demonstrated a Halloween dinner. I prepared said dinner that Halloween, and then again the next year. Then I missed a year because I didn't think anyone cared, and it was as if the world had come to an end. So I had to start up the Halloween dinner again. Tonight was the night for the Halloween dinner, which is still pretty fun, but not the most tasty dinner in the world, so once a year is enough. The meatballs are "Goblin Eyeballs" and the sauce is "Witch's Sauce." The rice is (ewww!) magots. We have to get a little creative with the vegetables, so this time Taylor chose the corn, and called it "Monster Teeth," I think. She wanted mini carrots for "Witch Fingers," but I don't buy mini-carrots, and she refused to use regular carrots. I usually make up some sort of punch, too, but just went with apple cider this year. I went to the grocery store after work intending to get glazed doughnuts and cider for a treat, but got distracted with Halloween decorated cupcakes instead, but still got the cider. By the way, cupcakes and cider don't mix well. Anyway, everyone enjoyed their Halloween dinner and I'm off the hook for another year. We ended the evening with watching the old Don Knotts/Tim Conway comedy "Private Eyes," which is a classic.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009


Casserole - A dish, usually of earthenware, glass, or cast iron, in which food is both baked and served.
October 20, 2009

As I mentioned at least once before, I like casseroles. Especially when it is cold outside. It's just good comfort food. We had mashed potatoes on Monday, and I always make extra (although with Jack around, my "extra" is getting to be less and less!) so we can have Shepherds Pie another day. So that was today, and just for kicks, I threw some bacon on top before I put it in the oven. That tasted pretty good! I think I'll keep doing that. We have learned that we like the Shepherds Pie better with brown gravy instead of the tomato paste/sauce/soup way.

It was another one of those busy days. I was at work until 2:45, and then came home and immedately tackled my apples. I cut them up to go in the steamer/juicer, carefully reading the instructions again to see if I went wrong last time. It turns out I did - The water is supposed to not only be boiling, but there should be steam escaping from the top of the steamer/juicer, and that took a really long time, so I'm absolutely sure that I started timing too soon. I let it go the full 90 minutes, and I got 2 quarts of juice concentrate. During the steaming, I was getting dinner ready and organizing my out-of-control primary stuff. Immediately after dinner - without even cleaning up - we were off to Pack Meeting. We have so many scouts now, that just the intro to the meeting (prayer, flag ceremony & awards) took 45 minutes. Lane did a quick presentation on things to be prepared with on hikes, campouts, etc., and then I came home to clean up the messy kitchen and grind up my steamed apples for applesauce. Lane & Jack went to Jack's football game. I filled the dishwasher, and then handwashed at least that many more dishes. But now I can go to bed knowing the kitchen is clean, but still cluttered. I may be slow, but I'll get through as many of those apples as possible, one way or another. My offer still stands for anyone who needs apples or who wants to come join me as I do it. These chores always go faster with a friend.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Knick-knack, clutter

Knick- knack - A small trivial article usually intended for ornament.
October 18, 2009

Another day of desperation. By way of history, I got this little guy about a million years ago at a craft fair my mom and I used to go to in Alpine during the deer hunt. I don't do that anymore, but I think I've had it since the first Halloween (maybe the second?) that we were married. I think it's the only thing I bought way back when that has lasted. I used to have a cute scarecrow, but after 3 kids toting it around the house every season, it died a very sad and painful death.

Clutter - To make disorderly or hard to use by filling or covering with objects.
October 19, 2009

I can't stand clutter. I can't stand ot have stuff sitting around like this. I allow clutter to accumulate in 2 places - my desk (which is beyond help), and my scrapbook table (also beyond help). Sure, I have papers here and there, and 3 kids who are tornadoes, but generally I can't stand this. But with all the apples still to do, there just isn't any sense in putting it away. See, there's new jars waiting to be filled, with my apple/peeler/corer/slicer on top, my food mill, my steamer juicer, and my dehydrater. After taking Sunday and Monday off, I'll be back at the fight tomorrow. I got the floor mopped today since I couldn't bear to have Grandma come over and see it so horrible, but I've been avoiding mopping it because there doesn't seem to be much point since it's just going to get messy again with apple stickiness.

Saturday, October 17, 2009


Portrait - A likeness of a person, especially one showing the face, that is created by a painter or photgrapher.
October 17, 2009

What a cute boy!

Addie is always overjoyed at the prospect of having her picture taken.


My, isn't she growing up to be a lovely young lady! What happened to my baby?
We went out and got our family pictures done today. Everyone apparently had the same idea, because there were family groups all over the place having pictures done as well, plus a wedding going on at the amphitheater by the temple. My good friend Nanette and her daughter did the photography, and one of them got some fun candid shots along the way.
Before the photography, I decided that something must be done with all those apples in the garage. I got myself one of those steamer/juicer things and after I got home from work the kids and I chopped apples like crazy (luckily no peeling, coring, nor slicing) and tossed them in the steamer/juicer. It only netted me about a quart and a half, but I don't think I gave it enough time. The leftover apples I threw into the food mill and we ground them up for applesauce. Since I was doing that anyway, we steamed some other apples and ground them up as well. It went fast, like I knew it would, but it is more like store-bought applesauce in texture, and I like my applesauce to be chunkier, that's why I do it the long and complicated way usually. Anyway, I got 10 quarts of applesauce done in about 2 hours, plus the juice, and it usually takes me at least 4 hours (typically longer) to do it the chunky way since it has to simmer for so long. Well, I guess there is advantages to both. So I'm slowly working my way through those apples that have been in the garage for a while, and still need to get to what is on the trees! Hopefully this week will be a little less chaotic than last week. I say that every week, and they all end up being pretty chaotic. This business of staying to work until 2 instead of noon is really throwing me off! I just need to get it done, one way or another.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Mardi Gras

Mardi Gras - a carnival held in some countries on Shrove Tuesday (the last day before Lent) but especially in New Orleans.
October 16, 2009

Yes, I am still cleaning up from our cruise and finally found all my Mardi Gras beads. For some reason I had put 2 in one place and 2 in another place, so I finally got all 4 back together. They are just cheap ones that I took from the bowl at our hotel, but they are festive and now I have to figure out how to fashion some sort of Christmas ornament out of them. I doubt I will ever find myself in New Orleans again (mostly because once was enough), so I want to keep them as a momento.

So prototype numbers 1 and 2 of the Christmas card turned out to be disappointing, so I attempted #3 today. It also turned out disappointing. So October is half over and I have no Christmas card. I have a few ideas swirling around in my head, so we'll see. Lane started in again with the eye rolling, so that's not a good sign. I really need to get something together, and soon! Christmas is coming!

Thursday, October 15, 2009


Spooky - Suggestive of ghosts or a ghost; eerie.
October 15, 2009

I make no secret of the fact that I don't like Halloween. I think it's all dumb. I'm sure I liked it as a kid, but somewhere along the way it just became dumb. I vote to remove it from the calendar. I can't think of anything about it that I like. It is just a pain and a bother and should be done away with.

This is why I think it is God's cruel joke that I have a Halloween baby. She wasn't due until December 9, and of ALL the days that she could come early, naturally it had to be Halloween. And at 00:15 on Halloween. Nope, it couldn't have been 15.5 minutes earlier. Since I hate Valentines Day just as much as Halloween, I bet that if I had gone for a 4th kid, he/she would have been born on Valentines Day, just because.

So now I have to put in a little effort for Halloween. Plus, not only is October 31 Halloween, now it is a birthday too, so it's double the agony . . . I mean double the fun. Somewhere the Big Guy is having a big laugh at my expense. I've always felt that He had a sense of humor. How else do you explain Wyoming?

Wednesday, October 14, 2009


Oh, I love to make bread . . .

With the rainy day today, it felt like a soup kinda day. Luckily, Lane's cousin's wife was kind enough to post a soup recipe on her blog that sounded yummy (Wilson Writings on my blog list), so I thought I would give that a try, and in her recipe she mentioned making breadsticks so I just went with her plan since I didn't have a plan of my own. It turned out to be a good decision. The soup was really good, even though I had to "tweak" it somewhat to accommodate the ingredients I had on hand.

My SIL Angie gave me this breadstick recipe a few years back. It is so quick to make that I can even make them at the last minute (well, ok, almost last minute. It's still bread, after all!). The recipe follows.

Angie's Breadsticks
1 T yeast
1 T sugar
1 t salt
1 1/2 c warm water
3 1/2-ish c flour

Mix the first 4 ingredients and let stand for 10 minutes.

When the yeast is foamy, add enough flour to make a dough that can be handled w/o sticking to your hands. Knead.

When dough is smooth and elastic, let it sit for 10 minutes. Roll out on a large greased cookie sheet just until the dough almost touches the sides.

Brush the dough with melted butter, and seasoning to suit your taste (this is parsley and garlic salt). Cut dough into breadsticks with a pizza cutter. Let rise for 10 minutes, and then bake at 400 for 12-18 minutes.

Breadstick - a crisp, stick-shaped roll; often served with soup.
October 14, 2009
I make these breadsticks quite a bit, particularly in the fall and winter. I think that there is somewhere a law written that chili cannot be served without breadsticks. When I make chili, I season the breadsticks with Salad Supreme seasoning. Weird, I know, but try it - it's pretty good. I make breadsticks to serve with spaghetti sometimes and season with parmasean cheese. It's very versatile. And who doesn't love fresh breadsticks with a bowl of soup when it's cold and miserable outside? That's just good comfort food, is what that is. And my stoneware pan just cooks breadsticks to perfection. Actually, I cook all my breads with stoneware, and I haven't been disappointed yet. I only have 2 pampered chef stoneware pans (1 muffin and 1 9x9 square), but the cheap stuff works just as good.
We didn't get our family pictures done today due to the weather. We'll try again this weekend when it's supposed to be warmer.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009


Assortment - A collection of various kinds; a variety.
October 13, 2009
See what I've been driven to? Some days are so uneventful that there is just nothing to photograph. As this year-long project is starting to wind down, I am starting to get very relieved. Holidays are coming up which will provide their own photographing opportunities, but days like today are just impossible.
Anyway, I have too many buttons. I am not an active button collector, just an accidental button collector as is anyone who sews. It seems that buttons and patterns never match up, so there are always buttons left over after a project. I remember when I was a kid, and even up to my teenage years, there was a local department store here in town that had a fabric department (what I wouldn't give to have Christensen's back!!), and they sold individual buttons in this large cabinet that reminded me of a card catalog. So if you needed 6 buttons, you could buy six buttons. Not like now when I need 6 buttons and have to buy 2 cards of 4 buttons, leaving me 2 buttons left over. It is this sort of silliness that has turned me into an accidental button collector, and I don't lose a button off an article of clothing frequently enough to warrant all the spare buttons that I have. But, darn it all, I keep them all anyway, because you just never know. That and I have too much of my parents packrat tendencies. Which is another funny thing, because when my parents moved out of this house, there was just more stuff, and more stuff, and more stuff and we thought it would never end. But in talking to my mom, she blamed it all on my dad, because, as she claimed, all of her stuff was important, and all of my dad's stuff was crap. Then in talking to my dad, he declared that all of his stuff was important, and all my mom's stuff was crap. Well, I thought it was ALL crap and just wanted it gone! Please don't ask Lane about the rocks in the garage, because I think they are still there after 5+ years, and no one knows why, and it makes his blood pressure rise. There is still some wood in the rafters in the garage that we are under strict instructions not to touch (my dad thinks it is very valuable) but he hasn't been around to lay claim to it in 5 1/2 years. How important/valuable can it be? I'm just sayin' . . .

Monday, October 12, 2009

Infrequent, Aromatic, Shrub

Infrequent - Not occurring regularly; occasional or rare.
October 10, 2009

My bed hardly ever gets made. I sleep in it all night, of course, and then Lane sleeps all day, and when he gets up at 4 or 5 o'clock in the afternoon, it just isn't worth making. So it always gets made when Lane is off work so I don't feel like a complete failure of a homemaker. I so need a new quilt, but I love this one so much and haven't found anything yet that I like as well, so here it stays.

Aromatic - Having a distinctive, usually fragrant smell.
October 11, 2009

In our old house I had a rosemary plant that just took off and grew like crazy. I haven't had that kind of luck since we moved and have replanted rosemary at least 4 times. I was planning on a 5th with this one. It didn't die, but it didn't really grow either, and didn't look particularly healthy. For whatever reason, it finally decided to grow and looks pretty strong. I just need it to survive the winter and I think we'll be home free. I just LOVE the smell of rosemary! What to do with fresh rosemary? Put some chicken in a pan, cover it with cream of chicken or mushroom soup, throw some fresh rosemary sprigs on top and bake. Yum. I've been told it works with a beef roast as well, but I haven't ever tried that. Maybe I will now that I have decent rosemary again!

Shrub - A woody plant of relatively low height, having several stems arising from the base and lacking a single trunk; a bush.
October 12, 2009

We bought 3 of these bushes at Walmart last spring. They had beautiful, flame red leaves that turned green over the course of the summer. We planted all three in the front of the house (western exposure) under the living room window. All three get the same amount of sun, and, according to Lane, all three get the same amount of water. And yet the northern-most one is thriving, the middle one is alive, but gimpy, and the southern-most one is dead. Dead beyond resurrection, dead. Go figure. And yet the parsley I planted 5 years ago in the same area STILL WON'T DIE!!! Parsley is supposed to be an annual, biannual at best, and is still coming back, in the flower bed, in the grass, everywhere. It's annoying.

I got another 15 quarts of applesauce done on Saturday, and ruined my kettle in the process. I left the apples on too high for too long and, well, ruined my favorite kettle. Luckily, I have 2 backups. I bought the new Wii Fit Plus and we have all been having a good time with that. It has new fun games, and a way to set up a workout that runs continuously so there aren't big gaps between activities. Taylor has a cold/flu with a fever, so she has been down since Saturday. I thought she would be better today, but she still had a fever so we had to cancel FHE. I took Jack over for his orthodontic exam, and he's all set to get the spacers on Wednesday, and then the braces the following Wednesday. The course of treatment will go for 18 months, so he should finish up at the end of 6th grade.

Friday, October 9, 2009


Dye - To color (a material), especially by soaking in a coloring solution.
October 9, 2009

I finally, FINALLY, got my hair colored. I don't know why I put it off for so long. I also don't know why I got all the gray genes in my family. I've been gray enough to require coloring since I was 25, and up until the last 2 years or so, kept it colored most of the time. I love trying out a new color on my hair, so long as it isn't too wild, and I think this is the first time I have gone this red. I wish I had red hair, so back when I was coloring it regularly, it was almost always some shade of red, but this is pretty edgy for me. I like it though, I needed a big change, and this is certainly a BIG change from they horrible, mousy gray I had going on. I cropped the picture because I couldn't get a good look. I either looked spooky, depressed, or constipated in all the pictures I took. I had Bells Palsy back in 2003, and I don't think the left side of my face has ever fully recovered, and it shows especially when I smile. My left eye is always weird.

I got 4 more quarts of applesauce today. I was gone for 2 hours to get my hair done, and in all that time, the kids were able to fill the kettle only half way. I'm guessing they were not trying too terribly hard, because last weekend Taylor and I filled the kettle completely full in just over an hour. Hmmm . . . when the cat's away, the mice certainly do play, and then blame it on each other.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Prototype, Pinecone

Prototype - the first or original model from which others are copied.
October 7, 2009

These are my two prototype Christmas cards. Obviously, I wouldn't use those colos, but it's just a prototype, for heaven's sake. I had one all worked up and decided I didn't like it, so I had to make another. I think I'm happy with this design. One of these years I'm going to send out store-bought cards, just to see what happens.

I really LOVE Christmas. Christmas preparation is an almost year-long event for me, at least in the mental stages. Christmas is ALWAYS coming. I love all the Christmas prep, even when I start to feel overwhelmed and out of control around mid-December. I love all the tradition, especially the silly things that people have been doing forever, and sometimes don't even know why. I love that my sister and her family go out to dinner at a Chinese Restaurant every Christmas Eve as an homage to "A Christmas Story." I love that my brother and his wife used to set out pizza and sprite instead of cookies and milk. I love that Addie pulled over our Christmas tree one year and be-headed one of my Scarlett O'Hara ornaments and, even though it glued nicely, we can still see the crack and talk about it at every Tree Decorating. I love getting Christmas cards every year from loved ones near and far and hearing what everyone has been up to. I love it all.

As far as I'm concerned, Christmas begins November 1. Thanksgiving, never one of my favorite holidays, is merely a speed-bump on the collision course to Christmas. If it were up to me, I'd remove Halloween (and Valentines Day) from the calendar entirely and begin Christmas even earlier.

Pinecone - The cone of a pine tree
October 8, 2009
On a walk with the kids about a year (two?) ago, we found a bunch of pinecones and gathered them up. They got left in the garage, and I forgot about them. Somehow, I finally noticed them out there today, and brought them in. They will soon be a FHE project to make new Christmas ornaments.
I have 2 Christmas trees. The one in the living room is for the store-bought Christmas ornaments. This is where my Scarlett O'Hara's go, the Christmas ornaments that were on our first Christmas tree, the Hallmark ones we have acquired over the years, the ones I found in my Grandma's basement after she had died . . . The other tree, in the family room, is reserved for home made ornaments only. This is where the paper chains go, the Rudolphs made from popsicle sticks, the ornaments they make at school or primary . . . Ever year we glue the kids' school pictures to a juice lid and decorate it with glitter and stuff, and those go on the tree also. It makes a very nice record of Christmas' past, and the kids always like to see how much they have grown. They look forward to making those ornaments every year, and even though I only have 3 kids, I still save EVERY SINGLE juice lid, and we frequently find some use for them around Christmas time. Decorating the trees takes quite a while, since we have to stop and discuss each ornament's history before it goes on the tree. My trees will never win any kind of decorating award, or even be close to those gorgeous ones at the Festival of Trees, but they are full of precious memories.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009


Block - To obstruct the movement of an opponent.
October 6, 2009

I finally got to watch Jack play football tonight. I don't know how many more games I'll get to. It's quite a dilema. Taylor has mutual on Tuesday nights, and all of Jack's games are on Tuesday nights, except a very few on Saturdays. His games are at 8 pm, when it's pretty dark and cold, and I hate to take Addie out because she gets cold pretty darn easy. That's why I haven't been to any games. I took her tonight because it was reasonably warm during the day, and I figured its just going to get colder as the season goes on. Well, it was colder at the game than I had anticipated, so she was really shivering even with the layers of clothes, scarves, gloves and hats I had put on her. So that may have been my one football outing.

I got my Christmas card designed today, so there is one less thing to cause me stress. Now I just have to cut, assemble and mail out about 100 of those babies. We still have to get a picture taken . . . I did a little Christmas shopping online tonight so I'm chipping away at the mountain a little at a time.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Process, Lazy, Store

Process - to handle or prepare by special method of manufacture.
October 3, 2009

With the help of my SIL, Leslie, I did 25 quarts of applesauce. Most of them sealed themselves, but a few didn't so I had to process them. One of them exploded. I have never had anything explode on me except tomatoes, and that was a bunch of years ago. I'm not sure why this one blew, but it did and made me mad. A quart of applesauce takes a lot of work! And then to just have to toss it . . . it's just a shame. I can't believe I'm almost out of bottles. I still have TONS of apples to go (plus the tomato puree that is STILL in my freezer) and I have 8 jars left. I can't think of the last time I filled all my jars! It makes me very gratefull as I see my shelves fill up.

Lazy - not inclined to work or exert onesself.
October 4, 2009

We were so lazy for General Conference we never got dressed all day long. We laid around watching movies after conference and just went to bed in the same old jammies. What a great day! And what a good conference. I always enjoy Elder Bednar and I liked the talk on "not getting caught up in the thick of thin things." I am very guilty of that. And how exciting to have another temple in Utah!

Store - To keep, set aside or gather (things) for future use.
October 5, 2009

My shelves are filling up again. I really need to get these shelves organized. Things aren't grouped as they should be. It always warms my heart this time of year to look at my shelves as they get fuller, and take comfort in knowing that my little family won't die immediately. We will hang on for a little while, at least. I wish I had a place big enough to put everything together. This is in my laundry room, and I keep the home canned stuff in there, as well as the surplus of cereal, and other canned goods that we use all the time and won't fit in my pantry. I have to keep the stuff from the dry pack cannery downstairs, along with dried beans, salt and spices and stuff that we don't use quite so much. In my happy place I would have a huge space to keep it all together, but in reality it is scattered here and there. As long as it is somewhere, I guess that's what is important.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Twilight (no, not the book/movie!)

Twilight - The time of day immediately following sunset.
October 2, 2009

I wonder how many times per day I drive up and down the hill here in PG. Too many to count, some days. Anyway, today on one of my trips back UP the hill, I saw the moon rising and it was full and so bright I dashed in the house to get my camera. But since I still don't know what I'm doing camera-wise, I had a hard time getting the moon to show up since it was still light outside. Somehow I managed to get this shot, which makes it look much darker outside than it actually was.

I went and bought new silverware today. One of the many things that make me crazy is things that don't match, and we haven't had enough matching pieces for a while now and I just couldn't take it anymore. I brought 2 setting-for-8 sets into this marriage, we got another as a wedding gift, and got another a few years ago for Christmas. Of the 3 original sets, we were down to 3 or 4 forks in each set, and about the same in spoons. All the knives were still there. Anyway, as I said, I just couldn't take it anymore so I got some new. Things just need to match. Is that too much to ask?

We all have our issues, and I guess that's one of mine. That made me think of the issues of some people I know. For instance, I have a friend who can't allow her food on the plate to touch and she eats it one item at a time, in a clockwise manner. Another friend goes beserk if the toilet paper isn't loaded so it unrolls up over the top. I knew a girl in college who ironed everything, including socks and towels. I know another person who firmly believes there is a right and left sock. So what if I can't eat chicken on bread? Or that I can't shop at Albertson's because the shape of their carts gives me anxiety? That's just good sense, really. The rest of the people are the crazy ones.

Thursday, October 1, 2009


Bountiful - marked by abundance; plentiful.
October 1, 2009

I know, Lane's power saw is clearly ruining what would otherwise be a lovely picture of our messy garage. I originally thought this was 5 boxes of apples, but Lane has since informed me that they actually picked 8 boxes of apples today, plus 2 five gallon buckets. And yet the trees still look pretty much the same. Does anyone need apples? They are really delicious apples, just the right amount of sweet and really crispy. They make the best applesauce, too. So I will be deep in apples all weekend if anyone wants to come over and help . . . I mean visit.

I had given up on the peppers in our garden. They hadn't blossomed or anything. After picking the apples, Taylor brought in these peppers. They must have grown pretty much overnight, since last time I looked there was nothing going on with my pepper plants. They are perfect peppers: huge, thick-walled, and wonderful smelling. I wish a photograph could capture an aroma. I cooked some up with the hamburger for dinner (goulosh) and the smell is still hanging around, but in a good way.