Sunday, February 28, 2016

Dear Kids,
          Oreo never returned. A predator must have gotten him. Or two. There were two foxes strolling through the field last fall, and if they’re still around, they might have cornered him. One fox couldn’t have done it. When Dad and I used to chase him through the living room, it took both of us to corner him. We hope his end was quick. I’m planning to get two kittens to replace him. One cat couldn’t do it. Besides, Xena is getting very old (16) and she might not live much longer.
          Macie’s baptism will be this coming Friday night, March 4, in Pocatello, at 6 pm. It will be at the church at 42 Princeton Street, right by the interstate, where we’ve been before. Some of us will probably be staying over in Pocatello that night, but I don’t know if anybody has definite plans yet.
         Yesterday afternoon Dad and I went to the Timpanogos Valley Theater production of The Wizard of Oz, starring (among others) Ali and Abi Ackerson. First they were crows, and then poppies, and then ladies of Oz. They were very cute! Emma was helping with costume changes. (She’ll be in a production there next week, starring older children.) Kim was in charge of concessions (a bake sale!) so Dad and I bought several goodies from her. The Timpanogos Valley Theater is that ratty old building in Heber where we put on the Messiah a couple of years ago. It has lots of character. I’ve heard of their great productions, but this was the first time we’ve actually seen one. 
          My brother Charlie sent out an email saying that the big Allen family reunion will be Saturday, August 6. He hasn’t decided on a location yet, but is considering Hobble Creek, South Fork of Provo, or even Sugarhouse Park. I’ll let you know more when we find out. And don’t forget our own Ackerson family reunion, July 7-9, at Mantua. 
           So much fun! I love you all! Mom

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Dear Kids,
          We can see the ground again! Our snow has mostly melted, and we can see grass, dirt, and rocks again. So can the rabbits, who are back, eating our lawn. So can the deer, who are eating the lawn, and everything else. There were four of them in our yard last night, and when I tried to scare them away, they just stared at me. If they keep it up, we won’t need to mow the lawn this summer. We might not even have a lawn. 
           The Mexicans finished working in our basement, so Dad and I are down there again. Dad is painting, and I’m installing doors and moldings and doing tile. I need to figure out where to get carpet. We always went to Wards before, but we had so much trouble last time around, when they installed the wrong carpet, that I promised myself we’d never deal with them again. I contacted the guy in Heber who did Tom’s and John’s basements, but he’s hard to pin down. At least our project is far enough along to think about carpet! I’m glad for that.
          Macie’s turning eight, and her baptism, tentatively, will be Friday night, March 4, in Pocatello. One of her Sutton cousins is being baptized too, just like with Meg, and they’re having to work around all their various activities, so it looks like a Friday night will work best for them. I’ll let you all know the address and time when I find out. 
           Oreo seems to have disappeared. I can’t stand it when our cats go missing! It’s the price you pay for loving them. Some of our cats have died in terrible accidents (Trash, Scarlett, Mr. Knightly,) but at least you know what happened to them. We can still hope Oreo might turn up, like Vanessa’s Kita Cat, who was gone for nine months and then turned up at their old house. I’ll hope for that.
          Lots of love, Mom

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Dear Kids,
          There’s been an inversion down in the Salt Lake Valley–horrible murk and wretched air pollution, and even Heber has been cold and a little dank. But here in the beautiful Kamas valley, it’s been warm, brilliant, and sunny. The Jordanelle hiking trail calls to me practically every day. These winter inversions always remind me why we moved here! Nancy and Bruce came by on Friday. They were out on a lark, to get out of the smog. We had a great visit. I think the valley murk is supposed to move out today, so I’m glad they’ll have some relief down there.
          We’ve had Mexicans working in our basement all week, off and on, texturing the walls. They come and work for an hour or so, and then we don’t see them for a couple of days. I haven’t been able to watch them, because I’m always doing something else when they come, and I wanted to see how they do it! They said they’re going to do the ceiling on Monday, and I’ll definitely be down there watching. Meanwhile, I’m planning the next steps of our project. Yesterday, Dad and I bought doors. We thought we could get them all at the Park City Home Depot, but it was hard finding the right sizes, and so many of them were defective! We drove down to Salt Lake and went to two more Home Depots before we had all we needed. I’ve also been looking at moldings, but I can’t find exactly what I want. Is there any good place to get moldings, besides Home Depot and Lowes?
          Paul has reserved a campground in Mantua for our family reunion, for July 7-9. He said he looked at cabins, but they were all terribly expensive, and none of them would have been big enough for all of us. I love camping, and I’m sure we’ll have lots of fun. We always do! 
           Love to everybody! Mom

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Dear Kids,
         Our big excitement this week was five Mexicans arriving Friday morning to sheetrock our basement. They were 1 1/2 hours late, but when they started working, they were flinging up 12-foot pieces, holding them up with their heads, zipping with their drill drivers, slicing with their cutting knives–it was magical. I texted Tom to come and see, but I was honestly afraid they’d finish the whole basement before he got there. He came in 20 minutes, and we watched in amazement while they worked. The Mexicans literally ran past us with their pieces of sheetrock. After a little more than an hour, though, they stopped for lunch. And their lunch break took an hour and a half! They had their own microwave there, and they heated up their containers of tortillas and beans, and they laughed and they talked. But when they finally got back to work, they finished in lightening time. I think the whole basement took them less than two hours. They’re coming back on Monday to tape, and on Tuesday to texture. I can’t wait.
         Friday afternoon Dad and I drove to Brigham City for a visit with Andy and Renae. We met them at the temple and did a session, and then we went to dinner at Maddox’s. It was mobbed with people, mostly out-of-towners, according to Renae, traveling through. Maddox pies are famous, and Andy bought one to take home. The next morning Renae helped me make a pattern for slacks, since I can’t buy anything that fits me, anywhere. She’s an expert pattern-fitter. There’s an actual class she took at BYU where you learn that! She cut pieces of muslin and fit them on me, and kept adjusting until I was wearing a pair of muslin slacks. I can use that to make the pattern myself, here at home. I’m excited to eventually wear something besides levis. 
           Our rabbit problem seems to be solving itself. I think lots of them have died from the cold. The rest have been flattened on the roads. They sure aren’t very careful! 
          I hope you’re all doing well! We are, too! Love, Mom