Sunday, January 27, 2013

Dear Kids,
          As of tomorrow there will be no more 801 967 6403. The phone number you grew up with won’t be around any more, or at least, it won’t belong to us. Dad cancelled it because it was costing us $61.00 a month, and all we got out of it was one day of internet per week (at home) and lots of crank sales calls (even though we’ve always been on the do-not-call list.) Donna says not to worry–landlines are going the way of the dinosaur. All you kids usually call us on our cell phones, anyway. But it’s weird to think we would ditch the phone number we’ve had for 36 years.
          Donna’s leg is improving. She’s supposed to keep ice on it for another week, and stay off it as much as possible. Nora tended Anna from Tuesday to Friday, and other people have been helping out. Donna’s worst problem is boredom. She says it’s hard to sit around all day. Yesterday she was actually editing their family videos.
          Nora brought the Laurels from her ward to the cabin Friday night for a retreat. They slept in the bunkhouse, and it seemed to work OK for them. Saturday morning they had breakfast, and a guest speaker from our ward here: Jody McNulty, who talked about fashion and modesty. Then the girls went sledding on the hill, which was pretty slushy, but they seemed to have fun. Actually, some of them went sledding the night before, when there was a full moon. The cabin is up for every adventure.
          We’ve gone from way cold here to way warm. This past week it was in the 40's most days. Meanwhile, the Salt Lake Valley had a terrible inversion, the worst air I’ve ever breathed, when we were there on Tuesday and Wednesday. I was glad to come home. This afternoon there’s supposed to be a storm, and some clouds are rolling in, but the last four storms have passed us by, so I’m not too optimistic. The ground is bare in a lot of places, so we really need it, but I’ve been disappointed too many times to get my hopes up.
          I’m in Primary right now, and sharing time is going on. It’s about training horses, related to free agency. You’ve gotta love Kamas Valley!
         I hope you’re all doin’ great and lovin’ it! Mom

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Dear Kids,
          I’m typing this letter in the cold primary room. I have a few minutes because sharing time is going on right now, and nobody can see me sitting behind the piano, typing this.
          Dad and I had an appointment with the stake president just before our meetings started. I keep trying to get our piano class turned into a service mission, so that Dad and I will be service missionaries (badges and all!) when we teach it. I’ve made countless phone calls, and I’ve been shuttled from one department to another, but finally a man in the service mission department said our stake should sponser us, and we needed to talk to our stake president. I don’t know if this will work or not, but we had fun talking to President Sorensen. He grew up on 5600 west and went to Cyprus high. He knew all the Winders and Solomons and other old Granger families. It’s funny how many people here in Kamas Valley are refugees from West Valley. We keep running into more of them.
          Poor Donna banged up her knee skiing with Paul on Thursday. She ran into a tree when she hit a hard patch of snow. It looks like a cracked tibia. She had a MRI on Friday, and she’s hoping for a good diagnosis. Or at least an accurate diagnosis. (We’ve all had fun being misdiagnosed, haven’t we?) She’ll be sort of an invalid for six weeks or so. She can’t lift Anna into her bed, so she tried just asking Anna to climb in herself. Anna laughed at her and walked away. So much fun!
          Did everybody see Missy’s notice on facebook that Allen has been made a sergeant?!! Congratulations, Al! We’ll all want to hear more about it.
          This is a short letter because sharing time is about to end. Remember I’m fixing Sunday dinner next Sunday, the 27th. We’ll probably eat at 5:00. Let me know if you’re coming!
          Lots of love, Mom

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Dear Kids,
          It’s cold cold cold here at the cabin. Right now it’s minus14. We keep the fire going constantly, and we’re very grateful for the wood that Donna and Bevan have supplied us with. Oreo is snug and cozy in his heated kitty house. He thinks it heats itself, just like his food dispenser keeps him fed all by itself. He thinks we don’t do anything at all for him.
          Anyway, it’s really cold here.
          Dad and I are giving talks in church this morning. Everybody always gets ups and says that they dread talking in church, and when they see somebody from the bishopric on their caller ID, they don’t call back. I’m going to mention how I really love talking in church. Maybe it’s because when you grow up in a large, noisy family, you can’t ever get a word in edgewise, but when you talk in church, you have a captive audience for 15 or 20 minutes. Maybe there’s another reason. Anyway, I’m going to break new ground by admitting that I like talking in church.
          Dad’s retirement seems to be going fine. We follow a schedule of when to get up, when to go for our hike, when to go to the library, project time, dinner time, movie time, bed time, everything. It seemed to me that since Dad had a schedule for so many years, we ought to have one for his retirement. It’s going pretty well so far. Our daily hike is usually up to Rocky Point, or we do the little loop. It’s so cold right now, though, that we go to the fitness center and walk around the track. Our memberships expired, and it’s not free for senior citizens any more, so we have to pay $40.00 for a year. That’s still a bargain.
          Before Christmas I was negotiating with Fieldstone Homes about building us a house on Hilltop Road, overlooking the Provo River. It’s just about the most beautiful spot on the planet. I met with Fieldstone a couple of times, and Sharon’s brother-in-law Mike worked on the plans, but then they just seemed to drop me. But now that we’re in the doldrums of January, they’ve contacted me again. I’m going to Chris & Dicks on Tuesday to pick out cabinets. We still don’t have a firm price, however, so it’s still not a done deal. But I’m hopeful. I love living at the cabin, but we really need to move forward and have a real house where we can have our computer stuff, my grand piano, and our 2,000 books.
          Don’t forget I’ll be cooking Sunday dinner on January 27th. Lots of love, Mom

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Dear Kids,
          I’m still reeling from the excitement and fun of Dad’s retirement. Wasn’t that bus ride the best? I was so proud of our huge gang waiting at the bus stop, and everybody staring at us. Good thing there were only two bus passengers for us to freak out. I’m glad so many of our grandkids will have that memory of "riding Grandpa’s bus." And thanks to everybody for coming to the party at Golden Corral! I hope we all ate enough to get our money’s worth! And thanks for the cards and presents and good wishes to Dad. Leaving UTA is going to be a hard adjustment for him, but at least he had a great send off!
          Yesterday afternoon Dad and I finally met Stefanie’s parents. We had arranged to meet at the Applebee’s in Layton, and I’m pretty sure that’s where we met James’s parents 15 years ago. What a coincidence! You can be sure Stefanie has wonderful parents! We had plenty of questions for them, and they had plenty for us. Her dad works in microbiology, and he’s very interested in science. I sure wish he could talk to Grandpa Allen! Stefanie’s mom is delightful. She’s looking forward to having grandchildren to babysit, so Paul and Stefanie have it made.
        I have a new church calling now–I’m a home teacher. Yep, that’s right. I’m Dad’s new companion. There’s a high rate of inactivity in our ward, and there aren’t enough active men to visit all the families. When the idea was first floated, I said, "Heck no! I’m already a visiting teacher!" But then I went out once with Dad, and I was hooked. He has great people. I’ve already been visiting my ladies on the third Sunday, and Dad wants to visit his families on the second Sunday, so . . . this brings me to my point: I want to start having Sunday dinner at the cabin again, so is the fourth Sunday OK? I’ll fix dinner on January 27th, and let’s see how it goes! I really want to start having Sunday dinners again, now that our remodeling is done. I’ll be calling all of you to find out for sure if it will work for you.
          Meanwhile, life moves on. Thanks for all your love and support to both Dad and me.