dear busy week, I am very glad I survived you and that you are over!
dear baby raccoons, you are the cutest and most adorable little critters! You are much smaller than you look in the photos. You were hanging out in our waterfall (no water on) and licking the rocks. You were totally oblivious to me standing nearby taking your picture. I think your mama may be gone and you are on your own. Dave isn't too fond of you and would be happy if you were in a trap. I, on the other hand, think you are as cute as can be. I know, I know, you can grow up and become a nuisance, mainly due to rabies and terrorizing cats, but you are still cute right now. By the way, if you touch my cat, you will no longer be cute to me either. But I am sure you two little adorable things couldn't hurt anything. Now, if we can find a way to keep you babies! One winter we left a bucket of ice cream out on the back deck because we couldn't fit it in our freezer. The next morning we went outside to find the lid off of the bucket and no ice cream left. There were chocolate paw prints (raccoon paw prints) all across the deck. I'm sure you're ancestors had quite the party that night.
dear dave, I know you did NOT want to fix my lighthouse, but thanks for doing it anyway. You thought it was a piece of junk but I'm glad I convinced you otherwise. Once you repaired the broken mortar parts, and I painted it, it looked like new. I just wish we could have fixed the light so it would work. But I am grateful we were able to get it looking presentable so I could use it for my workshop this week.
dear sharing station for relief society, five minutes was not long enough. I was asked to do a presentation on how we can discover our inner beauty through service, since one of my callings in my church is the Humanitarian Coordinator. At first I was going to talk about all the service opportunities that are available in our community and take that route, but then I felt inspired to talk about how our words can be a service to others. I focused mainly on complimenting others with kind words. I am a theme person and so I knew I needed a theme and I decided to go with the lighthouse. I tied it in to how we are all like a lighthouse keeper and someone is always out there caught in the storms of life and they need someone to be that beacon of light that rescues them from the storm. I talked about something so easy and simple as our words can be that beacon to someone. We really never know the impact our words can have on others.
I was to present it seven times and I was given five minutes for each time. FIVE minutes! Who can present something in just five minutes? Well, somehow we all did. There were seven stations all together. We each ended up presenting only five times and got a couple of breaks to hit the other stations, which was nice. I was talking to my sweet friend Bonnie who was presenting hers on poise and we both said, for the amount of time this took to prepare, only having five minutes to present is kind of insane! She is like me, in that we tend to over prepare and over do things. We both made each other promise we wouldn't go all out. But in the end, she did anyway. She said I did too, but I really didn't. The hardest part was when someone wanted to make a comment! Just one comment could take the entire five minutes depending on who it was! haha
One of the best parts of the night happened in one of the groups after I had them do an activity. I had them compliment the person next to them and told them the only thing they could say was thank you after receiving the compliment. A few minutes after that, one of the older sisters in our ward, raised her hand during my presentation and said to me, "I just want to say that you have always been so good at giving compliments." I immediately responded with, "Oh, well I do try to do that but I really need to do better." I heard everyone laughing and realized what I had just done! Someone said, "You are just supposed to say thank you!" It was funny! Accepting compliments is really a hard thing for most women. I think it's because we don't want to come across as prideful and so we discount them most of the time, when the best thing we can say is just simply, "Thank you, I appreciate that!". Something I obviously need work on! hah
Here are the rest of the stations. ↓ The others were on poise, a seven day beauty challenge, talents, becoming a scriptorian, health, and showing your inner beauty through how you dress. It was a fun night. Next time I just hope they give us 6 minutes! ☺ bwhahaha
(click to enlarge)
dear newest addiction, Skinny Pop Popcorn. I was so happy when I first discovered you at Sam's Club, but now I am really wishing I hadn't! I am a popcorn ~~~L O V E R~~~ to the max and my favorite thing when going to the movies is to order popcorn (with butter). I blame my Dad for passing that gene on to me. The bad thing is I eat too much and then I usually end up sick to my stomach. But I just can't stop eating it at the time. If we are going to a movie, I will not eat dinner just so I can eat the popcorn. I used to always drink root beer with my movie popcorn, but that really upsets my stomach and I learned the hard way to eliminate the root beer and just enjoy the popcorn. Well, you (Skinny Pop) taste to me almost like the movie popcorn with butter. AND....you are just as addicting. But, the good thing is you claim to only have 39 calories per cup and no trans fat. The problem is, you are really hard to stop eating once I start. That one cup easily turns into two cups and then... But I am pretty sure you are healthier than the stuff at the theater. At least I don't feel as guilty eating the same amount of you as I do the other. Now if we can just get them to sell you at the theater! "Pop" on over to Sam's (or Costco) and give this stuff a try!
dear doomed lonely cow, seeing you on my run this week made me so very sad. You were in the corral at the meat packing store and I am afraid you knew your fate because as I ran by you called out to me in one of the loudest and distressed moo's ever. I talked to you about how sorry I was about what was about to happen to you and told you if I could help you I would. You just kept mooing to me as if you understood what I was saying. As I turned to keep running you went to the other side of the corral and mooed even louder as if to say, "Please come back and help me." Holy cow...literally. I felt your spirit was really anxious because you knew your fate. It really made me sad to think that living things are put on this earth to kill just so we humans can enjoy ourselves. I am not a vegetarian, but I can definitely see why so many people are. That was really a sad thing for me. I am a huge animal lover (ALL animals) and I feel like they are so mistreated anyway. But seeing you and hearing you and knowing I couldn't help you was really sad for me. I hope how ever your day ended, that it wasn't too painful for you and that you are now in the pastures in heaven grazing away in peace. I also hope that hamburger I ate for dinner... okay - stop - never mind - cut - next post!
dear bizarre-ness, there is a house in my community that I really get a kick out of and I love to see each day what is new there. This week I saw this... ↓
What is up with the weird prices of things people sell now days? $96.21? $66.66? I posted a chair and exercise bike on last week's Monday Memos that also had a bizarre price. What happened to $60 even? The most bizarre thing is that none of this stuff is worth even a fraction of what they are asking. Maybe the camper shell is, but most of the stuff I see should be in the garbage. I doubt the DI would even take it. But my favorite thing about this house, is the manican. They usually change it's clothes every day and it's always in one of their front windows. It just kills me! Today it had on an alien mask. What about you? Do you have crazy things in your hood too?
dear panda express, you seem to always be a stop whenever I take McKay shopping. I took him shopping on Wednesday to look for some football cleats. He absolutely loves you. Taylor does too. They both wish one of you would open in our city. I love Chinese Food as well, but you aren't my fave. I do love your fried rice though with sweet and sour sauce. The best part was our fortunes today. McKay's said he will step on the soil of many countries (thinking mission call in less than a year) and mine said I will be involved in many humanitarian projects (I am the humanitarian coordinator in my church ward). Maybe there is some thing to those fortunes after all. ☺ If not, they are still yummy!
dear taylor (aka elder wilding), we thought about you all day when Brazil played Croatia this week and knew things were crazy over there in Brazil! I just hope you are safe because those Brazilians get a little out of control when it comes to their futbol! I am so glad that your mission president is making you stay in your apartment on game day. That is very wise! Especially since you have three bars on your street! Be safe Elder!
dear el matador, oh how I love your food. You used to be my hangout in high school. I ate a lot of your food growing up. My favorite thing is the chips and salsa (heated) with cheese in it. Second favorite is the enchiladas! I was invited to lunch with my friends Tracy and Julie and thought we were just going to stay in town but Julie asked if I wanted to go there instead. I was excited! Sadly, my niece wasn't working as a waitress while we were there, but it was still yummy!
*Hey Dawn, if you're reading this, I tried to send you a picture on my phone while I was there but it wouldn't send! ☺
dear 15 miler, ugh. I am still not feeling recovered from the marathon one month ago. I feel like I should be, but it's slow in coming. I ran 15 today, but I had to walk some and I rarely have to do that. But, I don't want to push it too hard and end up injured either. I just want to be back to where I was and quickly. I am not being very patient in my recovery because the last time it went much quicker. I did really push it this time during the marathon and I am guessing that is why.
I ran around the dam twice and then down the canyon. Here ↓ are some of the sights I saw. The middle picture is going down the canyon right where you can see the temple. I love seeing that. You may have to click to enlarge to read the signs on here I saw at some homes. The poppies are out in full glory and gorgeous. I stopped to swing before heading back. I really love to swing. I want a swing in my backyard. Which reminds me of a boy I had a crush on in high school. Whenever he walked behind me he would always say, "Man, I wish I had a swing like that in my backyard!". I'm sure I blushed, but how funny I still remember it to this day. It was a really gorgeous day for a run!
dear speaking for the second time this week,what a fun event I got to be a part of. My friend Colleen asked me if I would come and do the same presentation for her Relief Society that I did in March. It happened to be in the exact same building! The building that we attended while living in Bountiful 20 plus years ago. The theme was When Life Gives You Lemons...
When Colleen told me the story of how she had just been put in her new calling in the RS and at her first meeting the president said they still needed a speaker (only a week and half away) for this meeting, Colleen said my name immediately came to mind. The president told her that she had total faith that the right speaker would be found even though it was cutting it close, but she knew the right person would know who it was to be and then Colleen got put in that calling and suggested me. No pressure! haha But I was happy to do it because first of all, I love Colleen and second, it was already prepared! And third, I really felt like I was supposed to after hearing that story.
I gave basically the same talk I did before about how happiness is a choice, only I tweaked it with how to make lemonade when life gives you lemons. I added a lot of quotes about that and passed out lemon drops and Dove chocolate. I also gave away a bunch of lemon related gifts for anyone who could share a story of how they made lemonade out of a lemony situation. We heard some great stories! My main focus was about Tyson and how we coped with his passing and how he was a pro at making lemonade because life was always throwing him lemons. He was such a great kid and whenever I give this talk, it makes me feel so close to him and I know he is near. It also makes me really REALLY miss him. It was harder for me to hold back the tears this time and I shed a few as I spoke, as did many of the sisters in that room. I always share my mantra with the group and I always have several ask me for the quote after. This is my mantra:
" I can shed tears that he is gone, or I can smile because he has lived. I can close my eyes and pray that he'll come back, or I can open my eyes and see all he's left. My heart can be empty because I can't see him, or I can be full of the love we shared. I can turn my back on tomorrow and live yesterday, or I can be happy for tomorrow because of yesterday. I can remember him only that he is gone, or I can cherish his memory and let it live on. I can cry and close my mind, be empty and turn my back, or I can do what he'd want: smile, open my eyes, L❤VE and go on." ~ David Harkin ~
|With my good friend Colleen.|
Here I am ↑ with Colleen and her two cute daughters who knew Tyson as well. Courtney (2nd from right) was his age and they were good friends and had some good times together. I shared a few of those stories too, like when Tyson and Matt were throwing water balloons at Courtney and her friends and someone opened the door and several went inside Colleen's house. lol We all laugh about that one. I was worried that they would come and have to hear the same talk twice (they came to the one in March), but they reassured me they wanted to hear it again and it helped them so much last time and so they were looking forward to it. As a speaker, no matter what, I always feel a little awkward when someone has heard it before, but hopefully I tweaked it enough that they weren't too bored!
Colleen ↓ with the sign I gave her about when life gives you lemons try to find someone whose life has given them vodka and have a party. I like to tease her about her vodka vanilla every chance I can. She makes homemade vanilla out of straight vodka. ☺
I was glad I was able to go and I had so many women share sweet comments about it after and later I heard back from Colleen about one mom there who had just lost her baby and she told her that I really helped her. If I can help just one person, then I really do feel like it was worth my time. Hopefully I did.
If I do that, then I am going to have an awful lot of chocolate!
My handout (click to enlarge)
dear matt's wedding, what a day of emotions! First I spoke about Tyson in the morning to Colleen's Relief Society and then the night before we went to the rehearsal dinner for Matt's wedding. Matt and Tyson were best friend since they were about 8 years old. As I walked in and saw Matt and his friends I was totally unprepared for the way it hit me. All I could think of is, Tyson should be here. He should be here. This is where he would be if he were still here. He should be here. I was not expecting how that made me feel. As I have said before, grief comes in waves. Most often for me now it is at a low-tide and pretty steady, but every once in a while when I least expect it, a huge wave comes crashing against the shore and nearly takes me down. This was one of those huge waves. I saw friends of his I had not seen in years. It was tough. And that was just the rehearsal dinner! It reminded me when we went to high school graduation and Tyson should have been there but wasn't. As we arrived at the dinner, Matt came up and gave me a big hug and it was so nice. I really had to work hard to keep the waterworks under control. The rehearsal went well. We went back on Saturday for the wedding and as we walked in I saw a table that had a photo of Tyson on it with the quote Skyler (Elder Wilding at the time) had written and sent it home to be read at his funeral. I am sure we gave it to Matt after Tyson passed away because it was in the same Hawaiian-ish frame that I have some of Tyson's pictures in. I forgot we gave it to him. But it was sitting on a table with a plaque that read: We know you would be here today if heaven wasn't so far away... That was a little bit more than I could take and I couldn't hold back the waterworks. Wow. I felt so happy that Tyson WAS there after all. At least he was remembered and not forgotten so we felt he was there and a part of it. What a great thing to do. I was so touched and so overwhelmed. Such a sweet gesture. Matt and Tyson were very close and I know it was really hard on Matt to lose him.
Matt and Ellie had asked Dave if he would marry them. We were touched by that as well. Dave had to get special permission from the First Presidency since Matt wasn't in our ward. I have always loved Matt. He pretty much lived at our house when they were younger. Tyson and him had a lot of fun. Dave brought that up during the ceremony. He talked about how those two were no stranger to the word explosives, and about a few of their experiences with that. It was funny, and the whole audience was laughing. I am glad he didn't bring up the one time those two blew up a toilet (during Sunday School) in the Bishop's backyard (Matt's dad at the time), and it was heard throughout the entire neighborhood and at church! They were both pyros. Good thing Matt's dad is a rocket scientist and was able to teach them a few things about safety! Dave did a great job on the ceremony.
Matt and Dave
Dave signing the official documents ↑
It was a nice event. But it was sure heart wrenching for me in so many ways. We had to run off to a family party on Dave's side at a park, and then off to another reception of one of Taylor's friends. Busy day!
dear kolby and shaelee's wedding reception, we had to leave Matt's reception early to get to a family party that we had to leave early to get to you. You were held in Pleasant View and so we had to hustle, but we wouldn't miss it because we knew Taylor would want us to wish you well since you were such good buds and played basketball together on comp teams and then in high school since you were only about 9 years old. As we were walking in, we ran into Ryleigh London, also friends of Taylor and also a basketball teammate since they were young boys. I took photos of each couple so I could send them to Taylor. He would have wanted to be there, but I know he is glad he is where he is. So crazy to think two of his really good friends are married! And Ryleigh's wife Teyler is the one we chose to give Tyson's scholarship to a few years ago. This entire weekend was full of memories and reminders of Tyson.
dear father's day, we started you off by going to church as usual. Dave's parents came to our ward today. The talks were amazing. Johnny Hepworth gave a really great talk and then he talked about Tyson. Did I mention Tyson was just in everything this weekend? I wonder if he is trying to tell us something? Johnny talked about how when the young men would fast for him and how every single time they did, he would get better long enough to allow us (his family) to take care of the things we needed to. He talked about how the entire ward fasted for him many times and how it strengthened the ward. I was not prepared for that, especially after Matt's wedding the day before. I couldn't hold back the tears and I had to let a few escape. Colleen had also told the story to someone after I spoke at her church about how on the Sunday after he passed away, she was leading the music and the song was Joy to the World and she said she stood up there leading the music with tears streaming down her face. She said the entire congregation was crying. She said the song was so perfect to represent Tyson though because he was always so full of joy. I don't remember singing that song but I do remember I sat on the very front row - can't remember why, but I did...and I also remember I got up and bore my testimony that day - two days after he passed away. I am not sure to this day how I did that, but I did. After church we headed to my Dad's house. They had cooked burgers and hotdogs and brats and we ate and then had a lot of fun talking with my brother and his family. I can't believe I didn't get any pix of that! They gave us our Christmas present (just a little late- haha) and then they left and Tiff and Britt and their kids came and so we all played some of the games in the Christmas basket. In the photo below we are playing Tenzi. ↓ It was super fun. So fun I fell off my chair! ↓ lol
Then we headed to Dave's dads and wished him a Happy Father's Day too. We stayed around and watched some of the final game of the NBA finals and then headed home and we gave Dave his gifts. The boys both gave him some really nice cards. It was another busy day, but fun.
Happy Father's Day to my Pa! He is one of the greatest men I know. He is a very easy person to like and he is well liked by everyone. He is a lot of fun and is so kind and nice and friendly to everyone he meets. He is a perfectionist and meticulous in everything he does. You could eat off of his car engines and his garage floor. He always has everything perfectly in order and looking wonderful. His yard is always immaculate and gorgeous. He is a very talented gardener and is always smiling. He is talented in many ways, especially when it comes to golfing- which he lives for. He is a very skilled electrician and can fix anything that is need of repair. He used to take me fishing almost every weekend when I was growing up and he was just the best dad a kid could ask for. He is just a genuinely nice and good guy. I am so grateful I got to have him as my dad. He has taught me so many things, the least of which to be nice to everyone you meet. Happy Father's Day Pops! I love you!
And yes, that IS Johnny Miller!
dear quote, you are one of my new faves. For some reason you hit a funny bone. ☺
dear mr. cat, I love these pix of you! I'm going to come up with a really good caption for the one on the left and put it on facebook. It is just begging for one. Let me know if any of you think of a great caption I can use.
dear new profile picture, I am adding this black and white one on here because I want to save it on my blog in case of future need. I already added the color one a few weeks ago, but I like this one better. Okay, what I was going to write and started to- but couldn't finish and deleted it...was, well let's just say it had to do with putting a picture in a paper for some morbid reason. Now it's here in a safe place and easy to find. Am I the only one that ever thinks about these kind of things? I hope it's not a premonition or something. My husband never reads my blog and so he would be clueless where to find the picture anyway. lol
dear tyson, I am not sure why this weekend you were so present in everything and everywhere, but you were. There were reminders of you all weekend long... the rehearsal dinner on Friday night, my talk I gave on Saturday morning, Colleen's memories of you after my talk, Matt's wedding on Saturday afternoon, at the family party held at the park where your tree is planted in your memory and how your cousins visited it and talked about you, at Kolby's reception with Teyler who we gave the scholarship in your memory to, in Johnny's talk at sacrament, in the pennies I found, in so many conversations this week... it was like that all week long. I know you never wanted to be forgotten, and you never will be. I won't ever let you be forgotten. I am so glad you were in everything and everywhere because I love feeling your presence. I love feeling you near. I love knowing you are close by and surround us with your spirit at times. I hope you know what an impact you had on so many lives while you were here and continue to have now you have passed. We miss you so much. I miss you so much. It hits me so hard at times and when it gets really hard and I start wishing you were still here to do the things your friends are doing like going on missions and getting married, and starting families, I just try really hard to focus on how grateful I am that I had you for the seventeen years I did. And I try to remember that you are in a better place and you are happy and doing great things that your friends that are still here can't do. It is just so hard sometimes to have you gone and so far away, but weeks like this where I have felt you so near help to relieve some of that sadness, yet feeling you so close also makes me sad because it makes me miss your daily presence that much more. Some weeks are harder than others that is for sure. I just miss you so much... Thanks for the wonderful memories we made in those short, but so very precious 17 years. I love you bud. Thanks for being here this week. Love forever, Mom