Friday, December 11, 2009

Gift of a Lifetime

When I was growing up stores didn't carry toys year round like they do now. The toys came in after Thanksgiving and were deemed as seasonal items. So when the toys hit the shelves you knew it wouldn't be long before Santa Claus made his grand journey. It made Christmas so much more exciting. I remember going to Huntsman's grocery store in Shelley (then located on main street) with my mother. Right above the produce sat the most fantastic creation ever--my dream doll. She was 28" tall and came with her own hair dryer, brushes, combs, and curlers. Each time we went to the store I stood and stared at the doll while my mother shopped. To my great joy dream dolly was waiting under the tree for me on Christmas morning. I quickly pulled her out of the box, grabbed a cup of water, wet her hair and started rolling it in curlers. My father (being typically male) snapped at me--something about "ruining" the new doll. My mother grabbed dad by the elbow, whispered something in his ear, at which he quickly mellowed. He came, gave me a big hug, and told me to "have fun." I will never forget that doll, the incident and that Christmas as it was to be the last Christmas we ever had with my father. To my surprise, I came upon dream dolly on ebay this morning. You can bet I placed a bid for her and am anxiously awaiting the response of the seller. They say you can't buy memories--but I'm certainly going to try. Wish me luck!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

I'm No Cook

Now, I'm no cook--if I could hire anyone it would be someone to do the cooking in this house. That being said, I just have to post this recipe I got from my daughter. It's one of the easiest, most delicious recipes I've used--and I always get good results. Try it--you won't be disappointed.

Oven Rotisserie Chicken

1 whole fryer (washed and patted dry)
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. paprika
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. thyme
1/2 tsp. white pepper
1/4 tsp. cayenne
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
one onion--quartered
Mix spices together and rub on chicken and in cavity. Stuff the quartered onion inside chicken cavity. Place in roasting pan and bake for approximately 5 hours at 250 degrees. (May cover if you like less crispy skin). The recipe says to let spices sit on bird overnight but we've never taken the time to do this. Works well with no advance marinating. The meat will fall off the bones--very easy! Enjoy!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Can't Wait

Is there anyone out there who loves Christmas as much as I do? I absolutely love this time of year as we head into the holidays. It starts with Halloween when I get to put my leafy, gold, orange, and red decorations all over the house. Then I replace my ghoulish fare with *turkey stuff*. My pilgrims are smiling on the fireplace mantle and on the kitchen island. My ceramic turkey peaks out from underneath the hand towel in the bathroom. I'm patiently waiting for Thanksgiving to arrive--along with an over-abundance of food, family and fun. And then . . . and then comes Christmas! As I write about Christmas I look outside to see snow falling for the first time this November. Yep--it's a sure sign that Christmas is coming. When I hear people complain about snow, the shopping, the time involved in preparing for the holidays I can't help but wonder if they experience the same holiday I do. For me, this truly is the best time of the year. It's exciting, it's fun, it's joyful and it's an amazing time to remember our Saviour and His love for all of us. Hold that thought--and make this Christmas one of the best ever.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Halloween Specter

This is one of the rewards of having an architect in the family. Ryan designed this ghostly silhouette for my entry wall in the new house. (Actually, he had made one for himself which I "coveted"). He was kind enough to make one for me. I had hoped to place it over the garage outside so more people could see it but everyone was of the opinion that it would be gone with the first Idaho wind. But I certainly thought everyone should see it so feel free to drop in. Come at night--it's A.M.A.Z.I.N.G.! Thanks Ryan--you're AWESOME! Did I mention that this baby is 4 feet tall and 4 feet wide? Impressive!

Sunday, October 25, 2009


My "doctor" hubby is about as useful to me when I'm sick--as a teat is to a bull!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Just Call Me Jane!

Jane Jetson that is! I remember a segment of the Jetson's in which Jane became frazzled and ill because she was pushing too many buttons. Her fingers were gnarled and twisted at her over-exertion. That was approximately fifty years ago. I thought it was a funny episode and for some reason I've remembered it. Well, this morning I decided that after a small amount of baking, the oven in my new house needed cleaning. But . . . I had no instruction manual for the stove. I took a long, hard look at the control panel on top of the stove, pushed the button labeled (of all things) "auto clean". And--wahhhlaaaahhh! My miracle stove locked itself and began cleaning. Now this truly is good stuff as I remember hours spent scrubbing and scouring my old ovens. You'd spray them, let them sit overnight, and then you woke up in the morning to an icky, gooey mess which was all yours! I much prefer this method. I must go lie down now as all this exertion of pushing buttons and typing on keyboards is exhausting!

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Precious Gifts!

Sometimes God sends you a little gift and you have to be very observant in order to see it. I've been trying to "baby" my flowers this summer so we'd have a nice back yard for Luke & Janelle's wedding. I was successful at most, but not so lucky with others. There's a hanging planter on the back of the house that I've had to replant--I wanted vining plants that would add a touch of green to that bare spot on the house. It's finally coming along although we only have a few weeks of summer left. This morning I went out to "survey the estate" (a term my family has heard repeatedly when I wanted some 'get-away' time). To my surprise there was a little peach colored flower on one of the newly planted vines. At first I thought someone have put an artificial flower into the pot--but upon closer inspection I realized that my tenacious, little vine also flowered. It was such a nice little surpise to wake up to on this beautiful Sabbath morning--just thought I'd share.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

An eye-opening experience!

I just got back from working at the cannery. What an experience that is. For those of you who don't know, the Mormon church has several canneries around the country. We have one of them conveniently in our town. Anyone can participate at the cannery--you do not have to be a member of the Mormon Church. The only requirement is that you be willing to work in the cannery in order to purchase food items there. Today we were making spaghetti sauce. Gwen went with me and we got easy jobs because she's ("tee-hee") pregnant. We spent the morning separating canning lids from canning rings--it was tough. Once we were finished and the cleaning was done we were allowed to browse through the "store" and purchase any of the items there. We bought strawberry jam, salsa, and spaghetti sauce. It's good stuff, it's cheaper, and the mess stays at the cannery. So . . . for anyone of you who is interested just let me know and you can go with me next time I go. Or call the cannery yourself and get their schedule and sign yourself up. It's an experience everyone should have at least once in their lifetime. And you feel SO productive!

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

The Neighborhood

Moving from a small town with a population of approximately 425 people, to a city with a population of over 50,000 has been a wonderful experience. Occasionally I miss the country (and I especially miss my neighbors and my Aunt Loraine), but for the most part the move has been extremely good for me. Over the weekend I hopped on my little scooter and felt brave enough to travel outside of my "comfort zone"--a.k.a. the immediate neighborhood. I was delighted to learn that if I headed north I was "wahl-lah" right smack, dab, in the heart of country living. On my drive I smelled lilacs in full bloom, cows in full bloom, I got hit with ditch water by an irrigation system, and I again experienced that feeling of freedom that comes only with my time on the scooter. So things haven't changed that much. Now, if I could only get Blake, Lani, Jordan, Kiel, and Loraine up here, I'd be in fine shape!

BTW: Be sure to check out my new blog at

Sunday, May 31, 2009

New Blog

I started a new blog this week. Now it may not be interesting to anyone but me, but the truth is, I've had these littles "nudges" running around in my head for years so I thought I'd put them in writing. The link for this blog is:

I've tried writing my life history and it's in this computer somewhere, but I think this will be more fun. I hope to see you there!


Friday, May 29, 2009

My new Prodigy!

I've been in the process of planting everything I can get my hands on. I bought this Martha Washington Geranium at Costco in Billings, MT in hopes that I could get it to bloom. I planted it in Miracle Grow potting soil (I'll never use anything else), and it's just gorgeous. Enjoy--I certainly am!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Good time to make a hit!

Alas, we have the first summer holiday of the year--Memorial Day! Otherwise known as "A Thief's Ideal Date". We live in a cul-de-sac. As I look to my left and then to my right it occurs to me that we are the only ones still in residence for the weekend. There are no kids on bikes, no giggling happy sounds, no lawnmowers humming, and not another single living soul in sight. So, if I were a thief, I think I'd put in a good day's work and hit this neighborhood. I could be in Alaska before they all came home! BTW--Not telling where I live! Ciao!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Joy oh Joy!

I just got home from my my three-year-old granddaughter's first dance recital. As the mother of a bunch of boys--who has sat through her share of sporting events, I must admit that I really enjoy these recitals. Other than the bleachers being a bit tough on my backside (I decided I needed to create something called the "tooshy-cooshy" for those of us blessed with such a delicate nature), the evening was tons of fun. Kenley is the youngest in her class and naturally was the star of the show. She firmly planted herself on her piece of tape (placed there to mark her spot) and was successful in pushing larger girls off her piece of tape should they have the misfortune to venture onto it. Kenley was in a class of about 12 girls and ONE BOY! Their first dance was to "Old Mac Donald." Naturally, the young boy was dressed as a farmer to which my 6 year old grandson Isaac replied--"Wow--that farmer has 12 chicks". I guess you had to be there--it was hilarious. At the end of the recital Kenley's teacher danced with some of the older girls. Kenley watched the entire dance without moving a muscle. At the end of the performance, with an incredulous look on her face, Kenley said, "I didn't know my teacher could dance!" It was just one of the joys of being a gammie! I highly recommend it!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Blow Baby Blow!

Now if you live in Idaho you know about W-I-N-D! I'm not talking "balmy breezes"--I'm talking hurricane force winds without the hurricane. I hate the wind. I find it "stressful" and "nerve-wracking". However, today, and today only, I'm enjoying the wind. For one simple reason--I NEED A DAY OFF! We have been running non-stop since we moved into this house. Yesterday was extremely stressful (awoke at 2:30 a.m.--still not sure what that was about) and I decided that today I was going to do absolutely nothing! And that's what I'm doing. It's 1:11 p.m. and the sum total of my energy exertion has been to take a shower and get dressed. Since it's blowing like a "bat out of hell", it gives me the excuse I need to stay indoors and "pretend" to be busy! Eventually I'll wander into the kitchen and make an attempt to clean, but for now I'm content to plant my butt in this chair and listen to it blow. So Blow Baby Blow!

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Pleasant Surprise!

As you know, we have been in our new house for about two months. Some of the features that I loved when we moved in, are still my favorites. But there is one thing in the house that I have come to love--had no idea I needed it until I had it. That is the step-in shower! With my "bum knee" this handy-dandy bathroom feature is "the bomb" (as Randy would say)! And . . . the shower is big enough for . . .heh-mmm . . . TWO! Love it!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Measure Twice--Buy Once

Well, the Old Duffer and I made the trek to Lava in the "Bubba-Mater" to retrieve my wonderful furniture find. I was so excited to bring the bookcase home and put it in my large, empty family room. One little thing I didn't think about was getting the bookcase into the house and down the basement stairs in one piece. It was just not going to happen. After much thought, discussion, and physical maneuvering, the HUGE bookshelves are now sitting in my little office. I still love them but they're like a pink elephant sitting in this room. Advice to the wise-"er": Always take a measuring tape with you when shopping for that "deal of a lifetime". I still think I would have bought them anyway--handcarved, hardwood imported from Indonesia--BEAUTIFUL!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Once in a While!

I can't believe how much stuff there is to do when one moves from one address to another. I keep thinking we're about done and another project comes up. Yesterday my brother called and told me of a Bed and Breakfast--Lion's Gate Manor--that was having a furniture sale. Apparently the owner bought a lot of furniture but after he put the beds in the rooms he didn't have room for the elaborate furnishings. His loss--my gain! Gwen and I made the 1 1/2 hour drive to Lava Hot Springs and went shopping. I ended up buying a 6' (7' tall) handcarved, hardwood book shelf for $400.00. That may not sound fantastic, but have you shopped for furniture lately? Yikes! We've been looking for bookshelves since the Old Duffer is an avid reader--I was happy to find them. But now, how do I get them home? That's another problem. As we were leaving they pulled out another coffee table and I bought it as well--$30.00. Hardwood. Nice! Most of the furniture was too formal for my cute little house, but the prices were fantastic. Deal of a lifetime--if I can only get my treasures home!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

"The Old Duffer and the Monkey"

This old Gam is not the most patient person in the world. In fact, if you were to call me "driven", that would be most accurate. I get something in my mind and it just will not leave until I get it done.

The Old Duffer I live with is exactly the opposite. His motto? "Why do today what you can do five years from now?" Consequently, I feel that I spend a lot of my time waiting on him. He, on the other hand, spends a lot of time listening to me--let's admit it--NAG! I HATE TO NAG! If I can see the the job needs doing--why can't he? The difference is this: He can see that it needs doing but it just doesn't bother him. I see that it needs doing and it stays with me like a monkey on a cupcake. Think I'll write about it and call it . . .

Monday, March 30, 2009

Be Careful What You Write!

Feeling very adventurous I signed my blog up with adsense! Everyone told me I should be advertising on my blog as a way of making money! "What the heck--I'll give it a shot," I thought. I went online, made the request for my blog, and then checked off anything that looked "objectionable" to me. I'm good, right? WRONG! If you scroll down you read "My peeps are drying." This refers to those little marshmallow delicacies we all buy at Easter time.

So today, I'm checking my blog to see if anyone is bothering to read this stuff--and low and behold--right there on my blog was an ad for--of all things . . . PEEP SHOWS--adults only! What? When I was writing about Peeps (which is also what I named my bird because he reminded me of the aforementioned candy) it never occurred to me that that word would also link with "peep shows",the ADULT kind. So my goal for the day is to find a way to block "peep shows" from my adsense account. This may prove very difficult as I have absolutely no idea what I'm doing. But that's pretty obvious--or I wouldn't be advertising peep shows to the world. I'm on it!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Spending Habit!

Ok--we have moved into the city! Now that may sound normal to all of you but it has created a big problem for me--AVAILABILITY! I used to live 15 miles out of town so I would plan my trips and only shop for things on my list. Now, I'm so close that if I read an ad, I'm THERE! Not to mention the fact that moving into a new house has required us to do some shopping for things for the house--like rugs, blinds, etc. But I have discovered that I like to spend money and somehow THIS HAS GOT TO STOP! This week alone I purchased a head/footboard for my king size bed and a new game table for my huge, EMPTY family room. While I pride myself on being frugal and a "Clearance Shopper Extraordinnaire", I have to draw the line. I'm hoping that as it gets warmer and I can be outside more, my spending habit will be replaced by lots of rewarding yard work. But then . . . we have a nice big yard with absolutely NO plants in it. Ah-oh! I see a garden shop in my future!


Friday, March 20, 2009

Neighborhood observations!

I've been in my new house for almost a month now and I'm learning about the neighborhood. As I "work" on the computer this morning I glanced out my front window to observe a mad dash to the bus stop. It was a sight I'm glad I got to witness. I saw a young, and obviously very healthy mother, and her young child running quickly down the street. Within moments the 8 year old from across the street came blasting out the front door and also made a run to catch the bus. I couldn't help but watch to see if they all made it. Sure enough, they did. It may not sound like much, but it helps me to understand the community that I live in. I remember those hectic mornings--shower them, shovel the food in, and shove them out the door. Fortunately my kids could walk to school if they missed the bus--and it happened frequently. It's been fun placing myself in a new situation and meeting new people. I have high hopes for many happy years spent here in our new home. Come see us! We'd love it!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

My Peeps are Drying!

It seems that everyone I know has a cooking blog. Since I HATE to cook I will now provide you with my own personal recipe for an Easter delicacy. Go to your local Wal-Mart and purchase approximately 5 packages of those little marshmallow peeps. In this high-tech age peeps can be purchased in a myriad of colors. Once you get them home, remove the cellophane wrapper and set them up high to dry. You must do this now so that your peeps will be mature and ready for Easter in approximately one month. If you place them where you can see them your are highly likely to devour these small delicacies before they are dried to perfection. Good luck and enjoy.


As I type this blog, my little yellow canary named "Peeps" (named after the afore mentioned Easter candy) is quivering in his cage!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Can't find a darn thing!

This moving experience has been great! Except for the fact that I can't find a darn thing. As we were moving in I'd put something away and think, "Now that's the perfect spot for that." Then, when I go looking for it, that "perfect spot" isn't so obvious. I have to look through all of my cupboards to find just one little thing. I'm even moving a few things again as they are just too inconvenient.

This morning I finally ventured out into my back yard which still has two feet of snow in it. (I'm not exaggerating--the steps are two feet tall and the snow comes to the top of the steps.) I have a dreadful fear of falling again, but I felt extremeley brave because the snow was frozen solid. I jammed my shepherd's hook into the snow, filled my bird feeders to capacity, and hung the food out for the little birdies--of which I have seen NONE. I'm just waiting for them to get the news that the diner is 'OPEN FOR BUSINESS.'

Friday, March 06, 2009

Can it really be that long ago?

Ok, here's a real shocker. The old duffer and I have been married nearly 38 years. As we were moving I discovered an unopened wedding gift--brand new, still in the box. It has been sitting in the cupboard over the fridge for nearly 40 years. It was a 4 qt. corningware casserole dish. I have another one just like it and I suppose I was saving this one for when the other one wore out. Amazingly, I had never felt the need to replace the one I'm currently using. So I took it out of the box, washed it and it is now sitting in my new cupboards along with the "old" bakeware. Looks downright "spiffy". Sadly, it held up better than either I or the old duffer did!

Wednesday, March 04, 2009


Once again I just have to say what a wonderful thing it was that I gave birth to seven children. This weekend we moved out of our family home of 34 years, and into a newer home (bigger house, smaller yard). The kids were AWESOME! Dad and I could never have done it without them. And, it was fun. They were real troupers as they quickly and very proficiently (I might add), got the job done in short order. Thanks kids! All of you were great!

And . . . I'm glad I went from a smaller home to a bigger one. I can't imagine doing the reverse. I'm still trying to find places to put things. It'll take us a while to get things the way we want them, but the hard part is done. Thanks kids! Love you tons!


Saturday, February 14, 2009

Crap Job

I can think of no worse job on earth than the guy who stands on the corner with a sign around his neck advertising a "going out of business sale". Lately there seem to be more and more of them. Yesterday I passed a guy in a gorilla costume who was wearing a Statue of Liberty outfit. He was waving feverishly as we passed by. Another freak was wearing her sign and dancing all over the sidewalk as she listened to her headphones. I just have to wonder how much they get paid for that. It makes my legs hurt just watching them. And BORING. Can their possibly be any job more boring or counterproductive that that? Talk about "job satisfaction", it has to be at an all-time low!

Monday, February 02, 2009

My brilliant son helped me clean up my camera card yesterday. There was so much on it that I didn't even know what I had. We came across these pictures of an ice storm last fall and I still love them. I ran outside to snap some photos before the ice melted. I sat myself down on one of those lawn chairs to snap a few. Man, it got cold--and fast. I then discovered that my "backside" was frozen to the chair I was sitting in. You know . . . like Flick in "A Christmas Story". I just wanted to share the photos.