Sunday, February 27, 2011

Dear Kids,
      I’ve been putting off writing my family letter for lack of news, but nothing has come up. It was fun having so many of you for Sunday dinner last week. It’s always wild and crazy and fun. Our next family Sunday dinner will be March 13 (getting back to the 2nd Sunday, my plan,) and then the next time after that will be April 3, Conference Sunday, at the cabin. (Wow, this long winter is going by fast!) Easter Sunday is April 24th, and on Saturday the 23rd, Allen and Missy are hosting a picnic and Easter Egg hunt at their house.
      Dad was off last Monday for Presidents Day, so we drove to Midway so Dad could do his final work on hooking up Donna and Bevan’s dishwasher.  (It has been a heck of a job, due to the weird way the kitchen is laid out.) Usually Midway is pretty quiet, even on Center Street, but we were surprised to see several vehicles in front of Donna and Bevan’s house. Their living room was full of old guys in fishing gear. Winter gear, that is. They were all friends of Bevan’s dad, and they had been ice fishing at Deer Creek. When three of them fell through the ice, Lloyd sent them to Donna and Bevan’s to get warm and dry out. Donna gave them cinnamon rolls and hot chocolate, and they put their stuff in the dryer. They said everything had to be completely dry, so their wives wouldn’t find out. Besides, they couldn’t go home yet, because it was still morning. When they were all dried out and put back together, they took off for Rockport, where they figured the ice would be thicker. A couple of weeks ago, when I drove past Deer Creek, there were hundreds of people on the ice, with their little huts. I thought it was the dumbest sport ever invented, but come to find out, people really do catch fish that way! Bevan’s dad offered some to us, but they didn’t look very appetizing.
      If you’ve been on Facebook, you might have seen Bonnie’s link to the video of Grandma Allen’s cat Charlie, after he was shaved. Nancy made a good point: we shave poodles, so why not cats? Ask Ramona. She gets professional shaves from Monica now.
      Paul has a new job, sort of, but it doesn’t pay anything. He helps deliver Meals on Wheels. I’m glad he’s doing it, because Grandma and Grandpa really benefitted from that program, and I’m glad someone in our family is giving back. Speaking of Grandma, things haven’t changed much for her in the last few days. Any time you can visit her and Grandpa would be a good time, the way things are going.
      Maybe it’s good when there’s no news! At least there isn’t any bad news right now, that I know of!
      Lots of love, Mom

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Dear Kids,
     The big news of the week is Monica’s notice on Facebook, and if you didn’t see it, she posted: BOY! I presume that means a little Prendergast boy will be born in July. Great news! A girl would have been great, too, of course. We hope everything goes well.
     I had fun today at David Tregaskis’s wedding, although I was too tired to go alone to the reception tonight, and Dad’s doing the Blue and Gold Banquet. (He made a big pot of spaghetti and meatball sauce and took it.) Anyway, at the wedding, I had a lot of time to talk to my siblings, while we waited for the luncheon. Bonnie is making all the decisions for Grandma and Grandpa now, and they’ve started hospice treatment. Generally that means the person (or persons) are expected to die within six months, although Charlie said a woman in his ward just died after four years on hospice. Most of us don’t think Grandma will last six months, and Grandpa will probably follow her pretty soon after that. Grandma passed out in Bonnie’s car last week, coming home from a hair appointment, but she revived on her own. She and Grandpa have asked that no paramedics are to be called, no matter what. Their lives have shrunk down to their family room and the bathroom, and the hallway in between, and when you consider what they used to do, they don’t have much quality of life left. Earth life, that is. The good thing about hospice is that they have nurses, hairdressers, grief counselors, and even a chaplain. Bonnie said the chaplain read scriptures with them and sang a couple of songs, and Grandpa loved it. He thought the chaplain was his new home teacher. My brother Andy says if he gets laid off from Thiokol, he’ll become a chaplain. He says the training is pretty easy. Anyway, I just wanted to let you know what’s going on with Grandma and Grandpa so you’ll be prepared, if that’s possible.
     Tom and Kim will be in charge of our Ackerson family reunion this summer, and we’ve tentatively set the date for August 18-20. If you have a conflict, please let Tom know as soon as possible. There will be an Allen family reunion too, at Riverwooods Park, probably the middle week in July. I’ll let you know the exact date when I find out.
     I’ll be cooking Sunday dinner this coming Sunday, the 20th. We’ll try to eat at 4:30. Let me know if you’re coming, so we can set enough places!
     Hope you’re all doin’ great and lovin’ it!
     Love, Mom

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Dear Kids,
       The double baby blessing last Sunday was a great event. As Nora pointed out in her testimony, all but one of her siblings were there! Sharon and Seth, we really missed you! It was fun having Monica around for a couple of days. Thanks, everyone, for such a great day!
       Dad and I are still getting used to having a van again. I never did get used to its California tires, however. Last Saturday morning I was driving from the Cabin to Heber in an unexpected snowstorm, and it was terrible going past the Jordanelle. I didn’t know if I was going to stay on the road or go over the side. In Midway I picked up Anna, to tend her for the day, and I also traded cars with John, because I had to drive to Utah Valley for a bridal shower (for David T’s fiancee) and a baby shower (for Carly.) John’s car has Arctic Claw tires, and they got us down Provo Canyon very safely. Monday morning, early, Dad ordered Blizzak tires for the van, and I told him it didn’t matter how much they cost. It was plenty. But I feel safe now, and ready for anything. This morning Dad and I drove to Brighton for some snowboarding. It was great, except when Dad face-planted on Sunshine. After that, we were both ready to eat our lunch and go home. Next time we go, we’ll both be in better shape, and we’ll have an even better time. By the way, is anybody interested in a Saturday trip to Brighton for snowboarding? I know practically everyone skis free at Deer Valley, because of Bevan, but there’s lots of charm in snowboarding, too. Let me know if you’re interested.
       Now that nobody’s living at the cabin, I’m going through everything that’s still there. There are eight coats hanging on the hooks by the bathroom. If they belong to any of you, you’d better rescue them. I have no idea who brought any of them. Going through the games, I found the missing chess set with Revolutionary War figures. Yay! It was tucked in among the rest of the stuff. Dad took it to chess club yesterday, and both he and his opponent were equally baffled by which pieces were which. Dad finally won.
       I’ll be cooking Sunday dinner on February 20, and we’ll eat at 4:30 pm. Let me know if you’re coming!
       Lots of love, Mom