Sunday, February 25, 2018

Dear Kids,
         We finally had some excitement this week. We cut Tina’s back toenails. They had grown long again, and were very sharp, and she had drawn blood on my hand. So we did the procedure I learned from a lady in my piano class: You stuff her head first into a pillowcase, wrap it tightly around, with only her feet sticking out, and then stretch out one foot at a time and clip the nails. It really works. I do the pillowcase, and Dad does the clipping. When we were done, she walked around like a queen, proud of her well-groomed toes.
         Not very exciting? Well, we had a great snowstorm, too–the same one that hit most of you. We got nearly a foot of snow, the best we’ve had all year. People finally revved up their snowblowers. The family who owns the pasture in back of our house had a great time out there. The dad hooked up a long rope to his RTV, put a sled at the end, and put a couple of kids on the sled. Then he pulled them around the pasture in big circles, spraying snow in their faces, dumping them at practically every turn. The six horses were running after them, along with the dog. Our neighbor dog was racing back and forth in his yard, all revved up with the fun. It looked really cold to me, but they were all laughing. Especially the dogs.
         It’s been very cold here, too–below zero Wednesday morning. The wind has been icy. But I’m glad we’re finally having winter, so spring can come. And Easter! We have a good plan. Nora’s family will be gone to Disneyland that weekend, so they might have an event at their house the weekend before. I’ll keep you posted about that. Then, on Easter Saturday (March 31), which will also be conference weekend, we’ll have the Easter egg hunt here at our house, or maybe at the cabin, probably about 1 pm. Then we’ll have the soup dinner around 5:00, before the guys go to the priesthood session of conference. We’ll probably have dessert afterwards, too. The next day, Easter, will also be Blake’s first birthday, and the party will be at Tom and Kim’s, probably between the two sessions of conference.
         Finally, some real excitement!  I can’t wait.
         Lots of love, Mom

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Dear Kids,
         February is absolutely the longest month of the year! We’ve had practically nothing going on here, except for our doctor visits. Dad’s toe is healing. He’s lucky it hasn’t been terribly painful. My arm is healing up, from the carcinoma surgery I had a couple of weeks ago. I don’t have to worry about the scar, since I always wear long sleeves anyway. I’m seeing my hand doctor this week, about two of the fingers on my right hand–they’re locking up again, after already having the trigger finger surgeries. I hope they can be fixed again. I had a great dentist visit last Wednesday, because I’m getting two new crowns, making four bright white ones across the front. The old teeth underneath have simply worn away, cracked, and broken. But it’s exciting to get new, white ones! I think that’s all our medical news. Nothing very exciting there.
        But it’s supposed to snow today! And Nora’s family is coming by this evening, on their way to the cabin for Presidents’ Day. And we might have some of our other usual Sunday visitors, Tom’s family and John’s family. We really enjoy the visits from all you kids. Yesterday I was so bored I called Donna to see if she wanted to bring her kids over for a while. She came! She even had an extra little girl she was tending. (She says one more doesn’t make any difference.) It was fun to see them all. Our house enjoyed the action.
        And Easter is only six weeks away! It’s the same weekend as General Conference this year, so we’ll have to make a plan where we can have a Saturday Easter egg hunt, and watch conference, too, and have a place where the guys can go to the Priesthood session in the evening. That could be here at our house, or the cabin, or Nora’s house, or anywhere, really. We’ll have to talk it over. By the way, the General Conference schedule is changing: In the spring, they’ll still have the priesthood session on Saturday night, but in the fall, they’re going to start having the women’s session that same Saturday night, instead of the week before, like they used to do. That means that for October conference, we can have our usual Saturday night soup dinner, and then all the women can go off to their session, while the men tend the kids! It sounds like a great change to me.
        Life is good, just not terribly exciting right now. I hope all of you have more going on than we do! Lots of love, Mom

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Dear Kids,
         Dad and I are still keeping the doctors busy. On Monday I had the carcinoma cut out of my arm, and it didn’t take long. I let Dad watch–he said the tumor was about the size of a nickel. It had grown from practically nothing in about three weeks, so I’m glad it’s gone. It’s healing up nicely, and hasn’t hurt much at all, since the first day.
          Dad has been having some pain in his hips when he walks, and I suggested he call an orthopedic doctor, but he said what he really needed was a podiatrist, because an ingrown toenail was causing him even more pain. He had to call our referral hot line to find somebody, because Dr. Rhodes, who worked on most of you, had to retire early. He developed glaucoma and lost most of his eyesight. So the new podiatrist, a young woman, worked on Dad’s toe Friday morning, and did the same surgery all of you had. She just cut out the side of the toenail. I remember being in excruciating pain after I had that done, but Dad hasn’t even needed ibuprofin. He’s up and around and doing just fine.
         I cancelled my appointment with my hand doctor because I wasn’t really sure my finger was locking up. It is, of course, but I just couldn’t stand any more doctor visits right now.
         Since we never really had winter, I decided spring was here, so Friday morning I went out to dig in the yard. It was muddier than it looked, and the dirt was really heavy, but I dug out a few rocks and piled them up. It was more tiring than I remember, maybe because I’m not really in shape to be digging, so I went back inside. I’m looking forward to spring really being here, and to feeling really good.
         Allen and his kids came by Friday night, and Allen cooked a nice vegetarian dinner for us. If you dip pieces of cauliflower in batter and deep fry them, they taste like chicken, supposedly. He mixed them with oriental vegetables, and you put the mixture over rice. It looked like a restaurant meal. It was fun having them here, and it was nice having our house smell like real food had been cooked, I mean from the deep-frying. Most of the stuff I cook has very little smell at all.
         I called the lady who owns the property on the Provo River where some of the local kids have been baptized, and she said we’re welcome to have Lucy’s baptism there. She said they’ve built a pavilion there, with picnic tables, just for baptisms. She warned me, though, that the water’s always cold.
         I hope you’re all doin’ great and lovin’ it! Mom

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Dear Kids,
         Yay, I can breathe again! Well, sort of. Almost. Way better than last week, or the week before that, or the week before that. I can sleep in bed at night, instead of propped up in the recliner. Tina is rewarding me by sleeping on my legs again. It’s all so much better! And Dad has almost stopped coughing. Thank you all for your prayers for us!
         But we’re not done with doctors yet, of course. Tomorrow I’m having the cancer cut out of my arm. I hope it doesn’t go very deep, but I’m prepared for anything. On Wednesday I’m seeing my hand doctor, Dr. Raemisch, about my middle right finger locking up. It bugs me, because I already had the trigger finger surgery on that one, four years ago. I didn’t think it could come back. Also on Wednesday, Dad and I have dental appointments with Dr. Condie, and there’s a tooth I’ll want to get crowned for sure. It has suddenly turned dark, and it’s right next to my nice white crowns in the middle. By then, I will have seen five doctors in the last month: Newbold (family doc), Engen (my forehead doc), Raemisch (for my hand), Panko (ordinary dermatologist) and Condie (dentist). I hope I never compile a record like this again. Thank goodness we have insurance.
         I checked with Nora for sure about the dates for our Ackerson reunion, and it’s August 2-5 at Pineview. We’ll be there three nights, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. I’m so excited for the fun we’re going to have! And of course the Saturday before that, July 28, will be the big Allen reunion at Riverwoods Park, where we’ve always had it before. Lucy’s baptism will probably be that evening, since everybody will be in town. Sharon had asked me about reserving our stake center, since it would be close for both our family and the Thackers, but I suggested the Provo River. There’s a place over in Woodland where the locals have been baptized for generations. Mark and Tamri Allen’s son was baptized there, not very long ago. We need to find out more.
         I was hoping the blonde neighbor cat would become part of our household, but yesterday I saw her sauntering down the street toward Hilltop Road. She crossed Hilltop, jumped the barrier, and was gone down over the hill, probably to hunt. That’s how Oreo met his end, two years ago–it was February, and the snow had just melted, and he took off down there hunting. I’m sure the blonde cat has no clue.
         I hope you’re all doing well! Lots of love, Mom