Sunday, March 31, 2019

Dear Kids,
         So many of you have gone  out of town: John’s family to San Diego, Nora’s to Sun Valley, Tom’s to Washington D.C. (they’re staying at Sharon’s, of course), and Allen and Jen took all their kids to Las Vegas.  This afternoon and evening will be really quiet at our house!  Donna has promised that her family will  come, though, so it won’t be totally comatose here.  And I’m sure they’ll get the kitties riled up, with the laser pointer and the play mice, so there will be lots of racing and chasing.
         But then, next weekend is conference, and we hope to have lots of you here!  Saturday night is the bread and soup dinner here at our house at 5 pm, and then the guys will go to the priesthood session at 6.  I think I’ve contacted most of you about food assignments.  Nora’s family won’t be here until Sunday, so Nora has planned to have a taco bar here at noon, between the sessions.  You can text her if you want to bring something for that.  By then we’ll know what the new announcements are.  We’ve heard rumors of people receiving mission calls that say they won’t know how long they’ll serve until after conference, so maybe they’re changing the length of missions.
        Did I say anything about spring ever coming here?  We were supposed to get a rain storm Thursday night, but we woke up Friday morning to 4 or 5 inches of snow.  It was really wet, though, and it melted fast.  But it’s been so cold!  Yesterday I planned to go for a walk, just down the street and back, but it was 36 degrees, and the wind was blowing.  Well, maybe by the time it ever gets warm, I’ll be over my shingles pain.  It’s taking a long time for both.
        John’s cats had caught seven mice by the time they left town.  Our cats only catch play mice, the little kind with boingy tails that you get in the pet department at Walmart.  They come on a card of three, and I kept buying more and more, and they kept disappearing.  I would see Scout lying on the floor by the refrigerator, with his arms reaching underneath, but I could never see anything, when I looked.  Finally I took a long dowel rod, stuck it underneath, and pushed from the center outward.  I swept out eleven mice!  (Although Scout knocked one back underneath while I was working.)   Then I put a strip of wood under the fridge to keep the mice out. When Dallin was here, he took the whole big pile of play mice and dumped them on Scout's head.
        Life is crazy and lots of fun.  I love you all.  Mom

Sunday, March 24, 2019

Dear Kids,
         John called me to brag that his cats caught four mice in four days.  Each day one of the mice showed up on their doormat.  I told him that was wonderful.  Of course, his cats spend a lot more time outside than ours.  And they’re always trying to get in.  John caught one of them standing on the shoulders of another, trying to pull on the door lever.  Thank goodness we have round doorknobs, not levers, because our cats always want the doors to open.  But they want to get out, not in.  I’m pretty sure they couldn’t turn a round doorknob, even if one of them would let the other climb on its shoulders.  But eventually they’ll get to go out as often as they want to.  Now I just let them out once a day, because I’m afraid they’ll get into trouble.  Scout has already been over the neighbor’s fence to tease their dog Harley, who’s a Siberian husky.  I saw Scout racing back to our house, sailing over the fence.   I hope he won’t get too cocky.  He might not always get away fast enough.
         We’re still getting snow, but it’s melting faster than it’s falling.  I’m planning to go out and dig in the yard as soon as there’s a  patch of dry dirt.  My leg is still painful from the shingles, but I’ve put it on notice that I’m not going to baby it forever.  I’m tired of being an invalid, hobbling around with my cane.  So by the first of May, I’m going to stash away the cane and walk on my own.  And I’m going to do normal things, no matter how much it hurts.  I’m going to be my old self again.
         Two weeks until conference!  It looks like everybody will be back from their Spring travels, so we’ll have our regular Saturday night party.  It will be the guys going to the conference session this time, while the ladies stay home.  We’ll have our usual bread and soup and rolls, probably starting at 5 pm.  I’ll call around a few days beforehand to see what people want to bring.
         Easter is late this year, April 21, but still, that’s only two weeks after conference.  We’ll have to think about a Saturday Easter egg hunt, and at whose house.  A couple of years ago we had it here, and it was fun.  I’m sure our ground will be dry by then.  (Well, pretty dry.)  Or if anybody wants to volunteer their house and yard, (or a park nearby,) let me know.
         So much fun coming up!  I love you all.  Mom

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Dear Kids,
         We might have had our last snowstorm for the year!  The 2-week forecast has temperatures in the 40's, with chances of rain, not snow.  Of course we still have April and May coming up, and it’s still springtime in the Rockies, but I’m happy to see that winter won’t go on forever.
         Dad is giving away his old laptop, since he got a new one for Christmas.  Here are the specs he scribbled down for me:  AMD E2-1800 APU with Radeon Grphics 1.70 Ghz, Resolution: 1366 x 768, 64 bit operating system.  Some of that means something to me, but anyway, it’s a nice computer, if you or any of  your kids need it.  First one to respond gets it!
         My nice visiting teachers (whoops, ministering angels) came to visit me on Friday, and they brought me bread and cheese and a beautiful bouquet of flowers.  Naturally the kitties had to show off for my visitors.  Scout climbed on them, while Sonia found a play mouse and trotted past them, holding the mouse in her teeth.  Of course they thought both cats were very cute!  Sonia was fascinated with the flowers they brought, and when I put them in a vase on the table, she wouldn’t stay away from them.  I made the mistake of leaving them out overnight, and the next morning some of them had been chewed, and Sonia looked a little sick.  But after she spent a long time using the litter box, she was her old self again, racing and chasing.
         Conference is coming up in just three weeks, and of course there’s lots of speculation about new changes that might be made.  My favorite is that the members won’t have to clean the chapel any more.   In our area, the deacons still collect fast offerings, and I’m hoping they’ll finally do away with that, too.  What else?  We’ll have to watch and see.  I know some of you around here are going out of town for spring break, which is around that time.  I’ll call around and see who’s going to be home, and if enough of you are here, we’ll have our regular Saturday night bread and soup party before the priesthood session.  However it goes, conference is always a wonderful event.
         Life is good!  I love you all!  Mom

Sunday, March 10, 2019

Dear Kids,
         It keeps snowing.  Springtime in the Rockies!  Dad and I went down to Lehi Friday afternoon to visit McGettigans, and it was even snowing there.  No matter.  We had a lot of fun.  McGettigans moved there (Thanksgiving Point Village) about two years ago, and we’ve been to their new house several times.  It’s really nice, and they have guest rooms, so we usually stay over.  And since they have a membership in Thanksgiving Point, and they can get into everything free, along with their guests, there’s plenty to do.  Friday night we went to the new Butterfly Biosphere that just barely opened.   It’s a special building that’s warm and humid inside, with tropical plants and thousands of butterflies.  They’re big, colorful ones, mostly from Costa Rica.  You can’t pick them up or bother them, but if they land on you, that’s OK.  Besides the biosphere, there are lots of other things for kids–climbing places and activities.  I think all your kids would really enjoy going there, if you can afford to get in.  It’s $15 for kids 3-12 and $20 for adults–very pricey!  But you could spend at least half a day in there without getting bored.
         Saturday morning we went to the dinosaur museum, and it’s spectacular, too.  But I got vertigo in there, probably because the floors and walls are all slanted in different directions.  I got worse and worse, until I could barely stand up, so we left.  I’m hoping we can go back another time and I’ll do better. We might visit McGettigans again for the tulip festival, which is coming up!  I’ve always been curious about Thanksgiving Point, but I knew it was expensive, and besides, having fun just hasn’t been part of our lives.  I guess that’s why you need fun-loving friends.
         Speaking of fun, I have to have a colonoscopy on Wednesday.  It’s been a whole year since my cancer adventure started, and my colon doctor wants to take another look in there.  I guess I can stand it.  The procedure itself isn’t bad, but the cleanout routine you have to do the day before is wretched.
         Our kitties are still keeping us well-entertained.  While we were gone to McGettigans they unrolled the toilet paper in the little bathroom and knocked over the trash container.  Just now, as I was typing this, I left my desk for a minute.  Sonia walked on the keys and added several lines of gibberish.  I couldn’t understand any of it, so I deleted it all.
         I hope you’re all doin’ great and lovin’ it!  Mom

Sunday, March 3, 2019

Dear Kids,
         Today is Charlotte’s eighteenth birthday.  I can hardly believe so many years have gone by.  We’re so grateful for all you kids, and the wonderful families you’re raising, and for our loved ones on both sides of the veil.
         Thursday night Scout stopped eating and drinking, and he was listless and miserable.  He spent the night crouched on our closet floor.  Sonia watched over him from Dad’s sock bin.  I got up every couple of hours to see if he looked any better, and he didn’t.  Friday morning he ate a couple of bites of kitten chow, but nothing else.  We’ve never taken sick cats to the vet before, but I couldn’t stand the thought that he might die, besides the fact that we’ve already invested so much money in these two cats.  So we drove down to Arcadia pet clinic in Heber, where we’ve taken our cats before.  Scout was terrified by the ride in the cat carrier, and not at all listless when we arrived.  He yowled when they took his temperature, and it was high.  The vet guessed he had an infection, maybe from a bite or a cut.  He gave  Scout a shot of antibiotics and a shot of “anti-inflammatory,” which was probably a steroid.  By the time we got him home he was already looking better, and within a couple of hours he was eating.  Saturday morning he was racing and chasing again with Tina and Sonia.  If you’ve never had a cat on steroids, you’ve missed a great show.  And we’re very happy that he’s recovering.
         April conference is coming up in five weeks.  What changes are in store for us this time?  It’s fruitless to speculate, although we were right last time about the two-hour block. I could roll out my wish list again, but it’s better just to wait.
         Dad got a call regarding our cabin: the joists have been ordered, and they take five or six weeks.  When they arrive, Dad was assured, they’ll “hit the ground running.”  I think the only thing that will be hitting the ground will be the joists dumped from the delivery truck, and after that they’ll probably sit for several more weeks.
         But it’s all good! Someday the cabin will be repaired.  Someday I’ll be well and my pain will be gone.  Someday we’ll have green grass and warm days.
         Love, Mom