Friday, March 28, 2014

Two Relief Society Birthday Celebrations

MY ward had a Relief Society birthday celebration about the 19th of March.  It was just a very fun evening of food and fun.  We have quite a number of new, young families and couples in our ward, so it was great to have "getting-to-know-you" games.  We had taco salad, fruits platter, and ate the pretty cupcake centerpieces for dessert.  (Connie Weaver Donohue[?] made the pretty centerpieces. She used to live in our ward and caters now!)

We were assigned a color of table to sit at, determined by the color of name tag we put on when we arrived.  Then, part way through the meal, we were instructed to get up, take our plate and move to the table number on the BACK of our name tag, so we mostly had a whole new group of people to visit with.

Of course, I didn't think to take any photos while there, but the table decorations were cute and spring-y.  There were getting-to-know-you questions written on the paper on the table, as part of the centerpiece.  "Would you ever consider sky-diving or base jumping?"  "Where were you raised?"  "Tell about your first kiss"  Just a good variety of fun stuff.  Favorite books, oh, the list went on and on and we didn't have enough time to share everything and find out everything about everyone that we wanted! 

After that, we had a bingo game with more of those similar things. We got to find people who had done things them like "Lived in a foreign country"  "Been visit taught this month"  "Wearing Red"  "Served a Mission"  "Eaten sushi"  "Likes artichokes"  "Done their visiting teaching this month" "Read scriptures today"

And of course, there were a few fun prizes for the first few "Bingo's" and the first couple of black out bingo's.


My mother-in-law invited me to attend her ward Relief Society birthday celebration Thursday night of this week (March 27) with her.  It was a combination of the 19th ward, the Indian Hills Ward and the Greens Lake Ward--the three wards who meet in the Greens Lake chapel.  I went with her and figured I might see a few people I knew since we have lived in the 19th ward over the years.  . .Many, MANY years ago when we lived in Mike's parent's home.

Those women worked really hard and presented a very tradition Jewish wedding feast dinner, simplified and Americanized.  It was plenty of food and lots of fun.  They had a good turn out from all the wards and filled their little cultural hall.  We had time to visit with sisters around us.  Then they treated us to a really well-done presentation of the Parable of the Ten Virgins, a musical presentation written by Emily Freeman.  Beautiful music, beautiful costumes and voices and setting.  And I had a front-row seat.  It was really nice. I've never really noticed it before, but these newer little-er LDS chapels don't have a stage in their cultural hall! Hmm.  So it was good to have a front row seat. 

It did last a long time, but I'm very glad I went, as I have not seen a production of that before. I understand it is out of print now, but the ladies who presented it did a fine job. I could tell they had ALL worked very hard on the decorations, the food and the presentation.

Happy Birthday Relief Society!

Thank you, "Sesame Street"

I believe all my children grew up watching "Sesame Street" on TV.  I liked Sesame Street.  We also saw our share of Mr. Rogers and Barney.  But the letters in the alphabet have stayed with them in part, I believe, because of years of viewing Sesame Street.  Oh, I guess my reading to them, and 12 plus years of school may have helped a bit, too.

One day, I was pushing one of my younger toddler boys in the stroller.  He looked up into the pretty blue sky and saw something like this:

And the little toddler pointed up and said, "Look, Mom! An 'X' !!"  And so it was!  Only, I really don't remember if this was Nick or Eric.  Any memories of this, boys?

Sunday, March 23, 2014

March Madness

No, I'm not really into basketball.  As a matter of fact, it's pretty amazing that I even know that March Madness has anything to DO with Basketball.  But sometimes I pay attention to what is going on around me.

I have been paying attention, and  the weather has been extremely dry lately.  Last weekend, I went to the backyard and distributed some organic matter across the dirt that will be our garden.  It was some compost and a LOT of grass clippings from last summer. I also trimmed  a LOT of limbs out of our two fruit trees.  The limbs are still laying all over the ground, but I will pick them up and pile them out front NEXT week to be hauled away by the city.  They offer a free spring clean up each year!  Isn't that a nice thing?  I truly enjoy saving a trip the dump. I mean, I like the dump and all....nah.   Pass.  They can pick it up in front of the house.  All I have to do is put it there.  I live in a great town, wonderful state and a fantastic country that provides us many freedoms and comforts.  I am not one to take stop signs and signal lights, police officers and firemen for granted!  Nope, I love this place.  I love to sleep peacefully at night, without fear.  There is much to be said for this wonderful place we live in. Even though I did sleep through our neighborhood caucuses the other night.  oops. I was tired.

I also spent a LOT of time cleaning out some flower beds the past 2 Saturdays.  I think I did a "Cryptoquote" from the newspaper that said in spring one should smell like dirt at the end of the day.  Well, I did! ha.  Happy Spring.  It is   SOOOOOooooo unusual to be able to be outside and digging in the earth so early.  It's only March.  I used to wish in years past to go out and play in the dirt, but then it'd snow or something on the Saturday we had it planned. We usually get our garden in by Mid May if we are lucky.  It helps that our former back-door neighbors lent us their nice roto-tiller to use while they are away at graduate school.  Gee, I miss those cute neighbors.  The renters are not nearly as fun, and have a yappy dog.  Our "real" neighbors (the ones who are away) took really good care of their yard and garden and inspired me. And we shared conversation, produce and greetings back and forth.  I have a feeling there won't be nearly so many raspberries to glean this year, darn it.  But I'll share my zucchini. :-)

I applied for some money from a fund at work to attend a conference this summer in Las Vegas.  It's for the AMERICAN Library Association conference.  They've never had that one in Las Vegas before, and I got the funding I applied for, so I get to go!!  Yay!  I'm so weird.  I really LIKE conferences.  I attended ALA only once before, and it was held in Washington DC that year.  To have it in Las Vegas is really convenient.  Only, there are no other ladies from my library interested in attending, save one. She is presenting (hooray for her!) but was recently diagnosed with a re-currance of her cancer (NOT yay for her!), so I really have no idea if she will be able to attend by the end of June or not.  I had so hoped to be roommates with her.  Delightful woman.  So sorry that she has to face that again. Her treatment course has yet to be determined, as diagnoses just took place over the last week or so. Plus some other, un-related surgery

Speaking of libraries, I have SOOOOoooo enjoyed having a fully staffed Circulation area this past year and a half.  Truly a blessing.  I've been able to take time off, use up my non-contract and vacation time, and just generally have coverage and can get stuff done.  I mean, really. It's been great.    I like my job.  And my student workers decorated the area with the most darling shamrocks this month!  Everywhere!  Dozens. I loved it.

Now comes the March Madness part:

Over the past few weeks, one librarian announced her retirement.  She and her husband are leaving on a mission in a few weeks.  She's in my ward and they spoke in church today (Janet and Keith Seegmiller).  One more person announced HIS retirement--he is the department chair/associate dean.   Yikes!  AND THEN, to top it all off, our dean announced HE is leaving at the end of June for a new job in Mississippi.  Three leaving. No leadership.  Interim dean to be appointed and very few qualified to choose from.  We're already short-handed in the faculty area, especially with the one female faculty being so seriously ill. Our poor stressed-out secretarial staff on that floor!  That's a lot of change in leadership.  A lot of search committees and very few people left to do the work, quite frankly.  Some of MY people covet the faculty position and will apply. I have no idea how that will fly and how that might affect my department.  I get to serve on one search committee, and I'm sure some of my staff will serve on others. It's going to be an interesting summer.  Glad we (Mike & I) don't have any major plans, like trips or anything.  We're just working around home, I believe.  Cleaning out sheds and yards and the like.

There are also two more of our faculty who are approaching retirement within the next two to three years, or less (one is already over 70 yrs).  How much change can one small department tolerate before we all collapse in a tearful heap?  Gee, I was so hoping to be retired and gone before all this sort of thing went on.  Alas, I have years to go before considering that. "And miles to go before I sleep..." Frost

But my tulips are budding, the peonies are popping up and the rhubarb is coming back.  Irises are taking over the back fence and daffodils are smiling out front.  What's not to be happy about?

Well, I do miss Eric sometimes. It's awfully quiet around here.  HE has been incredibly quiet!!

Does anyone have any good April Fool's jokes to share?

Tuesday, March 4, 2014


I find it hard to believe that all of February has gone and I have not posted one photo, or made one entry on my paltry little blog.  Well, it IS the shortest month.

We had incredibly mild weather most of the time. So mild, I washed the car on the front lawn.

I think we ate some chocolates and enjoyed some lovely roses during Valentine's day (which I took off and stayed home to run errands, clean house, etc.)

Mike got the garage all enclosed and the door totally installed and functional.  It is nice to park our (now clean) car INSIDE the garage!  But there has been no snow to "protect" it from since the garage has been completed.  We did have a baby rainstorm here last week, but it was not much.  We are still very much in a drought.

The tulip leaves started poking their heads out of the dirt in our front flower bed, so I've watered them a couple of times.  I am hoping for some good blooms this year.  Although, the dirt is kind of hard  and the leaves rather small, so the flowers will probably be small, too.  We tried to improve the soil a year or so ago and failed at that.

Eric leaves on his "adventure" at the end of this week.  Mike and I will be empty-nesters once more.  That has happened a time or two over the years.  It's not a great thing, particularly. I mean, it kind of is.  But kind of not.  I don't know yet. I'll have to experience it and let you know.

I took quite a bit of time off of work, off and on.  Half a day here, whole day there, a couple of hours here and there.  I'd like to say that my house is spic and span and all my projects are complete, but that is not the case.

I went to a couple of concerts, I visited with my local legislators at our state capitol, I drove my MIL to a funeral in Provo, spent the night with Nick and Kaylee once.  I did a short presentation for one of our library faculty, and walked through an art exhibit or two (just on campus).

I did some inconsistent exercising, signed up to be a guinea pig for an exercise assessment student project, as well as the on-going nutrition assessment student guinea pig.  I have not outgrown my love of chocolate, but tempered it with some delicious carrot cake I made with "rainbow" carrots...from the extras in an Bountiful Basket I got in February.
Grated Rainbow Carrots

I went to one basketball game with Mike,
 as well as the alumni party before hand (won a tee shirt!), and I did my visiting teaching--even taking a treat this time ( a rarity).  I sent some correspondence I've been meaning to do for ages (a couple of get-well cards and sympathy cards).  And I've touched base with a few old friends.  Missed getting with another.

We were playing "Minute to Win It" with Oreo cookies before the Basketball Game.
Yes, it's all about me. ha.  Me, me, me...I, I, I.  Us, Us, Us.
Mike and I at SUU basketball game.