Monday, September 30, 2013

She'll Always Be My Baby Girl...But

To the world she is growing up!
My first thought after the Tooth Elf was...
Where are those great big ole permanent teeth going to go?
She is such a tiny girl...The Lord will provide a way!
It is probably called Orthodontics!

You might enjoy this post Jennifer did in 2008.  In fact I bet you will! In celebration of our last "first tooth loss" here it is:

Friday, September 27, 2013

Carmel Corn~You'll Love it! Not Sticky!

Jim's co-worker, Ellen, use to make this for us around the holidays. Ellen is so sweet and was always making something amazing and special for Jim. Lucky me, he shared. Thank you Ellen!! It is the best carmel corn ever! It's great because you bake it. It's never sticky, just perfection!


1 Cup Butter
2 Cups Brown Sugar
1/2 Cup light or dark Corn Syrup
6 Quarts Popped Popcorn
1 Teaspoon Salt
1/2 Teaspoon Baking Soda
1 Teaspoon Vanilla


Melt butter and stir in brown sugar, corn syrup, and salt. Bring to a boil stirring constantly. Boil without stirring for five minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in baking soda and vanilla. Pour over popped popcorn and mix well. Turn into 2 large roasting pans. Bake five minutes in a 250 degree oven. Stir and bake five more minute. Repeat this one more time. Cover a large cookie sheet with wax paper and remove carmel corn from the oven and put on large cookie sheet and cool. Break it apart. Enjoy!

It is Definitely Time To Fall Into
Autumn's Magical, Cozy Moments!
Hope You Enjoy This Tasty Treat!

Thursday, September 26, 2013

A Simple Woman's Daybook~September 26, 2013

Our lives pass swiftly by! I want to do something to remember
the everyday moments and my thoughts about them.  
That is what this Daybook is all about.
Focusing on the little things that become my life.
One entry at a time.

Just for today~Thursday, September, 2013
Outside my is a little after 10:00 am and it is chilly here in my office.  As I look out my window onto our porch I am struck by the blending of summer into fall as I gaze upon a rustic pot of impatiens still in full bloom and a pot of rusty colored chrysanthemums still budding.  The mums are sitting near a pumpkin I got just yesterday.  Umm, love that color.

It is a time of transition that is clearly marking the end of a very busy summer and a bit of hibernation and solitude ahead.  I love autumn and the coziness of bringing out the toasty throws and pillows.  We love the fireplaces ablaze and and steamy mugs of gourmet hot chocolate.  It is movie time in our household, it's like cuddling up in your blanket and watching someone tell you a good story.  Autumn evenings=shorter days and longer nights ahead and popcorn.

It is a time to nest and be revitalized for the winter around the corner.  Saturday I am getting all my fall decorations out which are not many, thank goodness.  But I love them they are loaded with memories both old and new.  They also feature all my favorite warm colors.  And like a squirrel preparing for winter I went shopping yesterday and replenished our pantry for the first time in months.  It feels good.  I love autumn, it is my favorite time of the year.  And I especially adore the leaves that change colors and fall and rustle on the ground as you walk through them.  And I never feel the compulsion to have them all raked up immediately.  I think there are people that wait for a leaf to fall so they can throw it away.  And I wonder...Why?

I am thankful for....the over-the-top spectacular summer we have had, the miles we have covered and the incredible memories made.  I am grateful for being home now and for having quality time will our family members in far away places, several times over these past months.  I am grateful for all the family history learning and the wonderful things discovered this year with the help of God and good friends and teachers.  Seriously it has been the best summer in years.  I am thankful for the safety we enjoyed on the trek around the east coast and to and from Utah four times since June 1st.   And I am happy my knees and legs are feeling a sense of recovery from all the running around.  When I am sick and tried of mobility issues and feeling sorry for myself the best therapy is writing about our wonderful life.  Then like a plant that has just been watered after a drought...I spring back with some vigor I didn't know I had.  It was important for me to write this today.

From the learning room....I have learned so much this year.  Learning is one of my favorite things to do.  I feel I have time for it now like never before and it lights up my life.  And I love teaching and sharing with people that are interested.  I believe learning is one way to remain vital in our older years even with body parts start to degenerate, our minds and spirits can experience enlightenment daily.  What a blessing.  The more I learn the more I know I do not know, as the saying goes.  It helps me be excited each day and to have something substantial to look forward to when I wake up in the morning.  I know Jim feels the same way and he is making great strides on his workshop that will be his new reality by spring.  The foundation is poured and the electrical is being put in place and soon there will be framing and a roof.  He wants to get at least that far before he has his hip surgery in the next few months.

I am reading...The God That Weeps and it is magnificent!  I started reading it on the plane coming home from Utah last Saturday and it has given me a lot to think about.

From the kitchen..All stocked up and ready to go.  Lots of great choices for meals and the ever present soup when Jim has to go back to his routines.  All is well in this kitchen for the foreseeable future. Whew!

Some spiritual thoughts I have been having...Everyone can choose for themselves what they believe and that agency is one our most important gifts from God.  You cannot get to heaven on someone's else testimony of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  No one is forced to do something they don't want to in the spiritual realm.  God beckons but he does not push or pull.  He invites with love and with open arms for all those who seek him.  We should all be more like Him.  

He knows something that most of us struggle with all of our lives.  We are one, not more or less than the next person. We can never change another person, we can but influence.  We can only change ourself.  Our agency is all ours.  It cannot control another's choices nor should it.  Think of the book, Man's Search For Meaning.  You can destroy a person's life, even unto death, but his mind and heart belong to him or her alone.  In those places, the heart and the mind, every person has their agency to choose for themselves.  Without that what good would faith be?

I am hearing...Sunny by Jose Feliciano.  Love this song.  A moldy oldie but so cheering.

One of my guilty, computer, computer.

Pet Peeves...just when we start getting ahead, something happens with my car.  Going to the car hospital on Monday for a check-up because lights have lit on the dash.  $159.00 to diagnose and then we know it will be cha-ching, cha-ching, cha-ching from there.

I am quoting...Pinterest

If I could change one thing it would be...that Hazel would be having a great kindergarten experience.  Not happening and has been the straw that broke the camel's back for our kids to move to Salt Lake for a do-over.  The school has been deplorable in their behavior and getting her the special help she needs to be truly mainstream. Their house is up for sale and they have found a house they love in SLC.  Praying it all works out for them all.  They all need and deserve a break.  They are a great family that seem to always be climbing some big mountain.  A plateau would be great even.  Jen staged their condo in one day.  She is my hero.  I would have loved to have worked side by side with both of our girls in my active decorating years. We would have rocked it and had so much fun together.

An enjoyable movie/ TV show we have watched lately...nothing on the big screen for the last week.  We did see Now You See Me last time we watched something.  That was interesting.

Little screen has been dominating my time with 45 hours of classes that I attended in Utah last week and a two hour class I was preparing for work that was finished on Tuesday just hours before the class began.  Too close corners cut for me, but got it done.  Tomorrow night is our movie night so I better start looking for an movie option....or the option will be Harry Potter or something like that again.

I am curious things will proceed from here on the sale of the condo.  They have had four or five showings now and it has only been on the market since Friday.  So hopefully some good will come of that.  We just want to see them get settled soon.  And get Hazie back in school.  And we want to see all the girls and parents with less angst.  It is hard when you don't know what is next in a long line of possibilities.

Plans for the rest of the week...tomorrow more writing and research, Saturday maybe the Farmer's Market and bringing on Autumn in the house.  That night a General Women's Conference broadcast from SLC and dinner at church afterwards. Sunday, genealogy and church. Monday, some finances need attending to and Tuesday work.  Beyond that hopefully nothing.  I think I am coming down with a cold.  How sweet, it waited until all my plans and deadlines are past.  Hitting it head-on with Cold-Eze and it is working well.
One of my favorite favorite and best friends~you keep me going and I love you.

One thing that made me so happy this past week...being able to help celebrate both Aynslee (11) and Hazie's (6) birthdays with them.  That was a joy.  Love those little girls.  The other thing...saying "night night" to my suitcase for awhile and getting resettled in the house with the hubster again.

The most surprising thing this past week...after 45 hours of intense training I didn't want the training to end. A weekend off and I could have kept going.

Some photos I am sharing this week...

Love it, it's that simple!

This is a recipe of our friend's that I put on Pinterest.  
It has gotten over 250 repins..
I am glad in spite of how good it is,
 that that many people copying it is astonishing.
Shall I post the recipe? 
Non-sticky carmel corn?  Yes or no?

From the Inspired Room!
Adore a cloche with something fun inside!

Are we ready for the above? 
 I know I am!  There is something about
 Autumn that denotes a new beginning for me.  
Something that makes my heart yearn for home 
and hunkering down into that schedule that
suggests a gathering or harvesting of the past~
accompanied by a routine and
stability that makes life feel almost new again.
  Perhaps it is a throw back to when
the kids would all start a new school year
with an excitement and promise
of still better things to come?

Whatever it is I love it.
 And I enjoy it completely before
it turns into the holiday season~
and the frantic pace that accompanies it.
 Don't get me wrong, I love that too but this,
this is something special that reminds me
of another way of life, when things were simpler
and exciting at the same time!

❤♡♥♡❤♡♥♡❤♡♥s, Bon

Monday, September 9, 2013

The Most Amazing Pinterest Board I've Seen

This is such an amazing Pinterest Board.  I love it.  I didn't want to lose it so I am posting it here to save and to share with you!  Let me know what you think of it, pretty please?  This person worked hard to create this Historic Board.  I'm impressed!  I have had a blog post formulating in my mind about Pinterest for awhile.  This may spur me on to actually writing it.

I completely enjoyed this I hope you do too!

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Sheri Dew On Oppression of Women in the Mormon Church

I was thinking that for the next little while I want to post some great church talks that may clear up some of the misconceptions about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints floating around these days.  This one is one of my all-time favorites about women in the church.  It is given by a sister named Sheri Dew and the video is about an interview she did where the status of woman as as equal church members was questioned.  Give a listen.  What she says is amazing and true!  How do I know?  I have lived it for 35 years and have gained my own personal testimony of it through the Holy Ghost.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Party, Live and Learn Vacation

Marriott Center~BYU

A few weeks ago we went to Utah for what is known in our Church as Education Week.  I spoke about it briefly in my last Daybook entry a week or so back.  This is held every year between summer and fall semester at BYU in Provo, Utah.  It runs from Monday to Friday for that one week.  When our kids were teens we had a long standing tradition of going back and letting them have a feel for what college might be like at BYU.

There they hold lots of wonderful youth classes on the Savior, dating, music, etc.  All the classes are geared to uplift the kids and helping them make wise decisions in those most crucial years between 14 and 24.  And they also have many classes for adults.  Over 1,000 classes offered in all, with classes running all day from 8:30 am to 9:00 at night.  They also have a variety of plays and concerts in the evening that are delightful if you are not too exhausted from the day.  We did attend the Scarlet Pimpernel production one evening with Robert, Ross, Spencer and Laura.  It was pretty fun.

Most members of our church pay tithing, ten percent of our increase to the church.  This maintains and pays for all of our chapels and temples, and many other programs of the church including a substantial amount to our church universities to help families better afford a top rated, wonderful and more reasonably priced education for their children.  We also fund a perpetual education fund to help young people in struggling nations attend colleges and universities in their nations and to receive vocational training in many aspects of life that they might better support their families later.  The monies also support our humanitarian aid all over the world to people and places when disaster hits.  There is more, much more but you get the idea.

 Education Week is very reasonably priced to attend so I would imagine the price we pay only covers a portion of the cost to the University.  There are usually about 30,000 attendees.  It is one of those deals where a lot of the locals hide out at home until the throng of visitors goes away at the end of the week.  Can't blame them...just the traffic alone is overwhelming.

One night we thought we'd go here!
Mistake, there must have been 100 Ed. Week
Attendees in front of us in line.

Anyway, Education Week this year was special for our family because Spencer got to go all week and Piper accompanied him on Monday and Tuesday.  Her time was cut short as she started high school on Wednesday so it was a pretty exciting week for her all the way around.  It was fun having part of three generations there attending classes.

A class by Randal Wright that Carol and I
 attended on Happy Families.

I have been attending Randal's classes over many years.  He is like an old friend. This is the immense Ballroom at BYU and holds about 800 seats for Ed Week participants.  (Best part~being with Carol!)
And that is saying a lot as the class was excellent!  But there is nothing quite like being with a wonderful friend doing something so uplifting.  I wish you all could know her like I do.

Richard Eyre~another excellent and 
long time friend and teacher at Ed Week. 
 Love this man for his wisdom and faith.
Jim and I and Carol and Laura attended his classes.

The teen kids had so much fun being set free all day to attend classes they chose in a wholesome and safe environment.  Robert was out in Utah at the same time taking a class for his work and so all of them came out.  Kids under 14 are not permitted to attend so Ross spent time with Aunt Jen, Aunt Missy and Robert's parents so we could do this.  We could not have done it without all their help.   Jim and I and Laura and Spencer stayed in the college dorms as I had also previously mentioned.  Spence loved that!

Spencer and Piper having a ball?

At 14 it must be irrevocably decreed that when your mother is taking the photo you are not allowed to smile and act like you are having fun.  But if it is someone else it is OK?   Spencer did have a great time, I promise you because I witnessed it!  And he confessed to it when no cameras or recorders were visible from his vantage point.  Sheesh!

So even though it was not our official year for our family reunion it turned out to be a mini one anyway.  Anytime we are all in one place we call it that anyway.  Some of the family had not seen Robert since August of 2011 before he deployed to the middle east. 

The first Sunday we were there after church in the late afternoon we went up to Mt. Nebo and had a BBQ with Jen and Laura's family at a camp grounds near Payson Lakes.  Talk about gorgeous.  It is about 7000 feet in elevation and the forest is just remarkable the air is fresh and the view spectacular.

Auntie Laura and Hazie reunion!

Chloe Jo and Uncle Robert


 Ross getting his Grampa group hug with Julia

Hazie and her Grampa.  The lighting was so weird
 up here with all the shadows and the setting sun in our eyes.

Julia and Piper sharing Girls' Camp songs~ 
While Piper plays the ukelele.

Chloe, Piper and Spencer around the campfire

Uncle Lowell tending the BBQ
while Chloe and Hazie watch at a safe distance.

Cooking and keeping a nice hot fire
 for S'Mores after dinner!

Sadly Chris and family could not be there but we had a great time with them the next weekend at a BBQ they held in their beautiful backyard.

It was just a great week with the family and with our friends the Holladays.  It completely wore both Jim and me out but we loved it.  All the walking and the altitude takes its toll on this old lady as you know. I'll be fully recovered about the time I go back next Saturday.

Jim took a day and spent it with Ross (because all the other kids had started school) and they rode their bikes for 20 miles.  He is one amazingly physical person.  All that and needing a hip replacement in a couple of months.  He claims though that riding does not hurt his hip at all.  So good deal.  Ross says his Grampa wore him out.  I could only smile and nod and think I get it one hundred percent!  Been there, done that with Grampa!  He was also able to squeeze another trip in with Spencer on the Saturday before we left.

Good job Rossie!

A rest along the way~20 miles is not easy!

Alpine Coaster at Park City

 They went to Park City for this particular ride which was extremely fast and fun.  3 hours in the car for a 180 second thrill.  But Jim's says the driving conversations were robust though.   One topic...How Life is Like a Chess Game!  That is Ross in a nutshell.

Spencer ventures back onto a bike.

He did great but his leg was sore 
for a few days, particularly his ankle.

It was Spencer's first time riding a bike since he broke his leg last spring.  That was one nasty break he is still wearing a brace on his leg.  That brace, by the way, is most intriguing to Hazel!  If she ever saw him without it she would admonish him to get it on!  So cute.

They stopped along the river at the big swing so
 Spencer could rest and put on his brace for awhile. 
 Hazie would be so proud! 

We have learned one thing for sure...we need to travel less between May and September in the future.  Since that is basically the only time we usually means traveling less in any given year.  This whole year has been a big blur, if it wasn't for my occasionally blogging about what we do I would be hard pressed to recall it all.  Far too many days living out of a suitcase.  They were good days though, nonetheless.

The new North Heritage dorm 
where we stayed ~ #25 on campus!

The Invention Prototype

The dorms are very new and very modern and extremely industrial to maintain their niceness as long as possible.  One things about Spencer is he is a born engineer.  He is always thinking of things that people need to improve their living environment or life style. He and Grampa had a little project going on the entire time we were there and this was what they invented for the showers in the dorm.  There is no place within the shower stall for a bar of soup.  So they got some PVC pipe and created this.  Actually it was quite awesome.  Now Spencer and Connor are thinking of marketing it at BYU for the students.  It will be very inexpensive and quite serviceable.  And the best part...a new crop of students every semester!  Sweet entrepreneurial opportunity for two young teens.   I am sure they won't have too much trouble finding a willing backer/investor.

We had to be out of the dorm by Saturday so Laura and her kids and Jim and I moved over to a Comfort Inn for a few nights which was barely a hiccup in our fun with family. That same day Jen had planned a surprise party for Julia, our granddaughter, who turned 13.  Funny she was surprised out of her mind considering she had been asking for a surprise party for three years.  Isn't that so cute?  It was special to have all her cousins from our side of the family and many friends too.  It was a bit crowded in the condo as it was threatening a big thunder storm that night.

Julia's Birthday table display.
This is kind of what I use to do for
 our kids when they were growing up.
  It is fun to see Jen has kept that 
tradition from her youth.

The sky after it rained cats and dogs!


Finally we got a chance to go outside and have
 cake and ice cream which helped keep 
some semblance of order in the condo.

Jewels in the goofy glasses her
 Mom bought her for the party!
  It was "condo cozy" but very fun and everyone
 was dancing and it was just perfect for her.
They are actively looking for a new house now.  Yay! 
Space is the ultimate luxury Jim and I have discovered.

The Whole Bunch

For some odd reason when we all get together we usually do end up dancing at some point.  I am forbidden to publish those videos on punishment of death from Jennifer.  I believe her threats are real, but oh how I do want to!    The dancing is usually brought on by our hilarious daughter, Jennifer.  She can make our grandkids laugh like no body else.  She is usually doing some funny antics when we take their group pictures and it is the only way we can guarantee all of them laughing (not necessary in a synchronized way...note above) not just smiling to the clicking shutters.

We had fun with every one of our grandkids and you know what?  It had only been a few weeks since I had seen some of them and they still all seemed older and more mature for some reason.  Maybe a new school year??  Even Hazie seemed more grown up but then she did start kindergarten after all.  Can you believe she will be SIX on September 24th?  Me neither. Sigh...

My next post will be about some of our time with Chris' family and his new book and his award from President Samuelson at BYU the day before we left.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

The Reese Twins of the Roaring 20s

William and Wilma Reese age 9 or 10
Joseph and Josephine Reese age 4 or 5

This morning (insomniac early) I had awakened and was looking on my smart phone at some old email files.  There in a file I found a bunch of old photos, this one among them.  The little sweetheart holding the doll is my mother and this is the only photo that I have of her as a child that shows me what she looked like.  There are a few others in various degrees of deterioration but this one is nearly perfect for being almost 100 years old.  Oddly I do not remember ever seeing this photo before.  I think I must have put it in PAF years ago and Lowell, our son-in-law must have taken all  those off PAF and sent them to me in a big photo file.   Anyway I feel as though God did send me a lovely and cherished gift this morning.

There are so many things I love about this photo.  The first is that each person in this photo is someone that is now deceased that I have known and loved very much when they were alive.  It is wonderful to see what they looked like as children. 

This picture was taken at a critical time in their lives, it is either just shortly before or after their mother died in 1924.  Their mother, Ella Evans Reese, had nine children include these two sets of twins.  The fact that the mother and twins all survived is a miracle in itself when nearly all twin births include at least one breech baby and were delivered at home.  In fact, all but their last child were born at home.  When little Ruby was born our grandmother went into the hospital, contracted a serious infection and died ten days later at 39.

This left all nice children, motherless and their father was a busy rancher.  Consequently they were passed from pillar to post and separated for several years in different households.  I do know that my mother and Uncle Joseph were kept together and I have no idea what happened to the other kids during those years.  I do know that it was very rough on my mom and her brother and not ideal in any way for them.

Eventually the kids had an old field hand named Ollie that came and stayed at their home and he was the best caregiver they ever had.  Their dad eventually remarried an old spinster that taught at the kids' school.  This also was not a happy time for the children.  They were to address her as "Miss Moore."  Not a "warm fuzzy" experience for the children for sure.  This fact was apparently kept a secret from their father who thought he had found a solution to his problem.

My mom says she only remembers her own dear mother as she watched her casket being lowered into the ground and as people threw dirt on it.  That simply breaks my heart, and to now be able to have a little girl's face to go with that story makes it all the more poignant for me. 

Another thing I love about this picture is the fact that my mom is holding a pretty little doll in her arms.  Mom told me she did not ever remember having a toy in her entire life.  I am not sure that this is her doll but it is nonetheless wonderful to see her holding it.

The other thing I like about this picture is a chance to see a little part of where they lived.  It looks like the most God-forsaken place on earth.  Flat, ugly, dry and brown.  Even in a black and white photo you can see it is brown!   And look at their little feet.  Only Aunt Wilma is wearing shoes.  We are planning a trip to South Dakota hopefully in the late spring of the year 2014.  I want to find their property and go there and visit some of the graves of people in the family who never made it out of Pierre, South Dakota alive.

I am so thankful for discovering this photo!  It just means so much to have something like this to share with her posterity and with my own siblings and cousins.