Sunday, August 7, 2022

 Dear Kids,

Now that the family reunion is behind us, it seems like summer is over.  I know some of you grandkids will be starting school very soon, and it doesn’t seem possible.

The next big event is a week from today, August 14; Bentley will be talking in church about his mission.  The meeting starts at noon, and Tom’s church is just east of the elementary school on 500 North in Heber.  (There’s another church farther east–it’s not that one.)  The after-party is at Tom’s house, and if you want to contribute to the meal, call Kim.  

And two weeks from today, August 21, is book club at our house.  We’re reading The Summer of the Monkeys.  It seems like forever since we’ve met!  It’s a great book, and if you haven’t finished it, there’s still plenty of time.

The biggest news at our house is that Dad finally got the mouse that’s been hanging out under our refrigerator and stove.  Sonia had spent hours gazing under both places, but hadn’t done anything about catching it.  (Scout could have done it, but he’s an outside fellow.)  Dad had set traps on three different nights using peanut butter, but the mouse hadn’t touched them, so he asked his friends at the coffee club, since they seem to know everything.  They told him to use pieces of Hershey chocolate.  He tried that Friday night, breaking a little Hershey bar into bits.  It worked!  Early Saturday morning he un-set the traps and then let Sonia in.  She crept towards the dead mouse with her neck stretched out long, like she was the most ferocious hunter ever, but we weren’t fooled.  Anyway, the mouse is gone, and if his relatives show up, we know how to take care of them.

Friday night Aaron was ordained to the Melchizedek priesthood, and Dad and I were able to be there, along with the Price grandparents and all John’s family.  John did the ordination, and it was really a sweet event.  Since I had been having a tough time after my chemo, (I’d been having horrific cramps, along with a wound that won’t heal) I asked for a blessing from John and Dad.  It really helped me!  You can never doubt the power of the priesthood.  

What a great family we have!  Love, Mom

Sunday, July 31, 2022

 Dear Kids,

What a wonderful time we had with all of you yesterday at Bear Lake.  I was sorry we couldn’t be there longer.  Oh, yes, and thanks for the birthday cake and birthday wishes!  Dad and I left soon after that because there was a chance we could be home in time for Dad to work on the sprinkler valves I’m using for the new meadow grass I planted.  Back to Bear Lake–Thanks to Monica for planning it so well, and for John for supervising the go-kart rides, and to Tom for supervising the pickle ball, and to Al for providing the lemon yellow sunshade we like so well, and for all of you for bringing food and equipment and children and your wonderful enthusiasm.  There never was such a family!  

Tomorrow I’ll officially be three quarters of a century old.  Since my birthday comes after Dad’s, it isn’t so hard to be one year older.  Actually, I’m grateful for every year I have now.  In connection with that, I’ll be starting chemo again tomorrow.  What a great birthday present.  Actually, I’m glad to have it, since it helps me breathe better.  

Bentley will be giving his mission report in their ward on August 14, two weeks from today.  I’m not sure of the exact time, but I’ll put it in my letter next week.  Tom’s church is the one next to J.R. Smith elementary on 500 North in Heber.  I’m sure there will be an after-party at Tom’s house, so if you want to bring something, contact Kim.  Yay for the family events!  There can’t be too many!

And there’s still three weeks for your family to finish reading Summer of the Monkeys.  Our official book club will meet August 21 at 5 pm at our house.  Two weeks after that is Labor Day weekend, and I’m thinking of having a Sunday night S’mores party then.  It will depend on the weather.  It should be cooler, and the sun goes down earlier, now.  That will make it better for an evening campfire.  It seems like it’s been Labor Day Weekend when we’ve done it before.

There’s no stoppin’ the fun!  Love Mom

Sunday, July 24, 2022

 Dear Kids,

Happy Pioneer Day!  This has always been one of my favorite holidays, since I love the pioneers and what they accomplished.

And we’re all geared up for the Ackerson family reunion, starting Thursday.  Thanks again to Monica for getting out the itinerary.  If you have any questions, contact her, but it looks like it’s really well-planned.  Dad and I will be there on Saturday, no matter how I feel.  You simply don’t miss the reunion, whatever.

I’ve had a tough chemo round again this time, but I’m willing to keep doing it.  I feel like a wet noodle all the time, and just sort of icky.  After the next two rounds (August 2 and 15) I’m hoping for another two months of feeling good. Thanks for all your prayers for me.

I’ve started reading Summer of the Monkeys for our next family book club, scheduled for August 21.  It’s long, but it never drags.  I read it once before, and it’s fun to be going through it again.  I bought a paperback copy on Amazon, but Tom was reading an epub version on his tablet.  And I’m sure there are lots of copies at the libraries. Thanks, Tom, for the recommendation!

Sonia is convinced we still have a mouse.  She sits for hours looking under the stove or the refrigerator.  I think she’s just excited about the smell, which is still lingering.  I think the mouse is gone, because Dad has set traps for two different nights and we haven’t caught anything yet.  

This is definitely the vacationing time of the year.  Tom’s family is in Texas for the Bentley reunion.  Sharon’s family has been in the Uintas for the Thacker reunion.  Allen is also in the mountains.  I’m sure some of the rest of you are spread out.  Go, Ackersons!

On Friday Dad and I went to the Heber airport so Dad could help John with his glider.  It was probably a hundred degrees, but John was running around in the sun like a little kid on Christmas.  It was his second flight this week– on Wednesday, he and a lot of his friends did a flight honoring Tom Mecham (owner of the dead cat) who had died the week before, and whose funeral they’d just been to.  I wondered if we should exhume the cat and bury it with its owner, but people told me not to bother. 

I hope you’re all doin’ great and lovin’ it.  See you all at Bear Lake!

Love, Mom

Sunday, July 17, 2022

Dear Kids,

Bentley comes home this Wednesday!  (July 20). That’s three more days.  He’ll be on Delta flight 2556 arriving SLC at 10:28 am.  Your best bet for seeing him will be at the airport, since Tom’s family is leaving the next morning for a Bentley family reunion in Texas. 

And thanks to Monica for getting out the itinerary for our Ackerson reunion, starting a week from Thursday at Bear Lake.  If you didn’t get the info, or if it wouldn’t open on your phone, contact Monica.  Looks like our reunion will be non-stop fun.  Dad and I can only be there on Saturday, but we’ll cram in everything we can that day.

The Allen family reunion has been rescheduled for Saturday, September 17, 10 am to 2 pm, at a park in Lindon.  The agenda will be about the same, except that there won’t be any swimming.  I’ll have more info when it gets closer. 

Wow, my letter is nonstop events so far.  Our family book club will be reading Summer of the Monkeys and we’ll discuss it on August 21.  Thanks to Emma for leading the discussion on Flat Stanley last week.  It was a fun book!

Sharon and Charlie and Conrad will be arriving this afternoon, and Nora’s family will pick them up.  Then they’ll spend a day at our house, and then head out to Upalco.  Matthew and Lucy are already here.  We’re sure glad they can spend time with us at this most event-laden time of the year.  

Dad and I dropped in on the campers at Mirror Lake yesterday.  (Donna’s, Nora’s, and Tom’s families.)  We walked (slowly) around the lake and then we just sat an marveled at all the goings-on.  There never was such a family for having fun!

Wildlife troubles: Dad heard a ruckus in the garage a couple of mornings ago, and when he investigated, there were four small raccoons getting into our cat food.  Dad had pushed the lid down hard on the plastic bucket, but their little fingers are so nimble they were able to pry it off.  We’ve now moved the bucket into the mud room, and I have to make sure the cat food dispenser and bowl are empty every night.  We’ll get the best of those little varmints!  More wildlife troubles: There was a mouse in our kitchen Friday night.  Sonia chased it back and forth, but it finally hid under the stove where she couldn’t get it.  Dad drove to Food Town and bought four mousetraps, and set them up along the wall, but the mouse was too smart for them.  Any home with two cats should be totally free of mice, but Scout is out hunting day and night, and can’t be bothered.  Sonia’s plain incompetent. 

So much fun!  Summer rocks!  Love, Mom   

Sunday, July 10, 2022

 Dear Kids,

Sharon passed her test!  She’s now a nurse!  She thought she wouldn’t know until tomorrow, but the results were available earlier, for a small fee.  ($8)  A week ago she was all bogged down in red tape, but she contacted her state senator, who cleared the way for her.  She found out last Wednesday that she could take the test the next day, or three weeks down the road.  She was totally prepared so she went for it.  Go, Sharon!  We’re very proud of her.  

We were all disappointed that the Allen family reunion was postponed.  Barbara was helping Bonnie make phone calls, and she didn’t get through to us until 9 pm Friday night.  She had left me a phone message earlier, which I didn’t notice, but when I went back and listened, she said there were “complications,” so maybe it wasn’t just the weather. Anyway, I’ll let you all know as soon as we find out if and when it’s being rescheduled.

Our family book club meets tonight at our house at 5 pm.  Be there or be square!  We’ve been reading Flat Stanley, and Emma will take charge of our discussion.  There will be refreshments, too, of course.   Maybe just cookies, or maybe more.  Be there! 

John has had a rough recovery from his tonsillectomy, but he said that’s typical for adults.  He has to take ibuprofen every 6 hours, and he’s still on otter pops, especially at night when his throat dries out.  I know he can still use all our prayers.

The Centerville fire on July 4th is old news by now, but it was cool seeing Allen on the KSL news, talking about it.  He looked very official, like always.  The fire wasn’t close to Nora’s house, but up where Ben’s girlfriend lives, they were prepared to be evacuated.  Luckily everything turned out OK. 

My chemo this time was a little worse than usual, or maybe the hot weather aggravated it.  I’m on the upswing now.  I was feeling so miserable yesterday afternoon that I had Dad drive me up the Mirror Lake highway.  We went as far as Provo Falls, and by then I felt a lot better.  Beautiful mountain scenery helps everything!

Lots of love to everybody, Mom


Sunday, July 3, 2022

 Dear Kids,

John’s tonsillectomy on Friday turned out fine.  He bought 160 otter pops to get him through, and he said the ice felt good in the back of his mouth.  Heather made the doctor tell him he can’t push any wheelbarrows of dirt until a week has gone by, so he’s having to put his grass planting on hold for now.

The Allen family reunion is this coming Saturday, July 9, at Laurie’s house.  Here’s the info:  The reunion will start at 10 am in Laurie’s back yard.  Bring your own food, drinks, and yard games.  There is a pool and Laurie wanted me to say that if young children will be swimming in the pool, their parents need to be in the pool with them.  There is a park nearby that has pickle ball courts. Laurie’s address is 2273 S.  Lookout Ridge Drive, Mapleton, Utah 84664.

Bonnie sent out another note saying that it will be pretty hot that day, so the main activity will be the swimming.  And visiting.  You might want to bring camp chairs so there will be enough seating.  See you there!

And our family book club will be next Sunday at 5 pm here at our house.  I’ve read Flat Stanley twice now, and it’s really good.  It seems like everyone but me was familiar with the story already.  It’s short, so there’s still time to read it.  Be there or be square.  

Jana McGettigan was here from Monday until Wednesday, because Glenn was out of town helping Brett move.  We went down to the bird refuge at Rock Cliff park, but a storm was brewing, and when it hit, we had to run back to the car.  When we got home it was absolutely pouring, and Scout was walking down the road in the rain.  Dad called him over, and he was so wet we had to dry him with a towel.  He enjoyed the attention.

I’m starting chemo on Tuesday, and I’ll wear my pump until Thursday.  I’m anxious to get going with it, because the pressure is building in my lungs.  The scan showed that my tumors are on the march again, but I’m confident the chemo (and the avastin) will knock them down, like it’s done before.  I appreciate all your prayers on my behalf.

I woke up yesterday morning to a chorus of dog howls and cat meows.  It must have been Harley, the Alaskan Husky next door, along with Scout and Sonia.  They weren’t exactly harmonizing, but they had a very plaintive song going.  I wish I could have recorded it.  I’ve heard lots of cat yowling at night, but never before with dog accompaniment. 

Life is good.  I love you all.  Mom 

Sunday, June 26, 2022

 Dear Kids,

It’s Super Sunday!  We’re meeting at 4 pm at Nora’s house, even though Allen is in charge.  Bring whatever you want!  Don’t worry if  it’s crazy.  The food you bring is always delicious!

Bentley has his travel plans!  Who could believe his mission would be over so fast?  He’ll be arriving home July 20, but he won’t be speaking in church until August 14, because of family reunions and fast Sunday.  I’m sure we’re all excited to see him again, and hear all he has to say.  He certainly won’t say it all in church–he’ll be talking about his mission for the rest of his life, just like the rest of us have been doing.

Donna and Anna went to camp last week, and Donna was the official camp cook.  She had 21 girls to feed, as well as leaders.  She says it was hard but fun.  They were at the Heber Valley camp, so they weren’t too far from home, but camp is camp.  I’m glad they both had a good time.

I got Flat Stanley from the library and read it in less than an hour.  I really liked it.  We’ll be talking about it at book club on July 10, here at our house.  Emma will lead the discussion.   Be there or be square!  There are lots of copies of the book at all the libraries. 

And the Allen reunion is a week from Saturday.  I put all the information in my last letter, and I’ll include it again next week.  It’s always fun to see all our far-flung cousins.  Laurie has a great yard, and there will be plenty to do. 

I’ve been trying to get rid of the ground squirrels at the cabin–the ones around the big moose.  I want to plant some shrubs and flowers there and I don’t want those squirrels eating the roots.  I bought a 5lb container of cayenne pepper from Amazon, and I dumped some of it down each one of their holes.  I hope it makes them scram.

I had a cat scan of my lungs last Monday, and I’ll be meeting with Dr. Lewis tomorrow afternoon.  I’ll be interested in what he has to say.  I’ve been feeling pressure when I try to breathe, so it’s probably time to go back on chemo.  Whatever.  I’ve had a great vacation from the stuff.

Life is good!  I love you all!  Mom