"Middle children have remarkable diplomatic skills."

-The Secret Power of Middle Children, by Catherine Salmon

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Wanna Play? Pt.2

This is a follow up to my 'Wanna play?' post.
There is a house at the end of my block that has been vacant for a couple of months. A few weeks ago I noticed that the 'For Sale' sign read 'SOLD' across the top. I haven't seen anyone moving in yet, but last night I saw some flood lights in the front room of the house, like maybe they were painting. So I frosted a plate of cookies and enlisted my favorite playmate Ron, to go over there with me. Ok, so I'm a little shy nervous chicken to go alone...there's safety in numbers. We knocked on the door and a woman answered, with a "who are you and what do you want?" look. We introduced ourselves and told her where we live. She then felt comfortable enough to tell us that she didn't live there, it was her parents who would be moving into the house soon. She also let us know she was wary of answering the door at night, when she was alone. We let her know we were happy to have her parents in our neighborhood, and we'd watch out for them. Then we gave her the plate of cookies and said goodnight...Okay, so we didn't ask her to "come out and play". But we did knock on her door, and she was a stranger. And I learned an important lesson... it's much easier to approach strangers if you have a plate of cookies in your hand!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Beautiful Heartbreak - Hilary Weeks - Every Step

Wanna play?

Remember when you were a kid and you could just randomly knock on someones door and ask if they wanted to come out and play? What if we as adults, did that? What if we just randomly saw someone we didn't know drive down the street and pull into their garage, and we followed them...knocked on their door and introduced ourselves. I'm curious what that person would think...or do. I lived in Utah all of my adult life, and I think it's pretty safe to say that 99% of the time the "stranger" you'd pick there to do this social experiment on would either be in your congregation, be related to you, or at the very least know someone that you know. I had a bit of a culture shock when I moved to the Pacific Northwest just over nine months ago. Our ward boundaries are measured in sq. miles not sq. blocks. A "concentration" of LDS people consist of 10 families in a subdivision.  It's strange to go to the grocery store and see aisles and aisles of wine and other alcoholic beverages. Kids play soccer and Little League games on Sunday. If one doesn't have a gardener, it's not uncommon to see that person mowing their lawn on Sunday. (apparently gardeners keep the Sabbath day holy) Yep, we're not in Kansas anymore, Toto! That being said, I absolutely love living here! The scenery is magnificent...the flowers, the trees...beautiful! The temperature in the summer is perfect. It doesn't snow a ton in the winter (it's kinda fake snow...it melts pretty fast) and I never have to shovel rain. The people here are wonderful...friendly, loving, and inclusive. So getting back to the beginning of this long and windy road of a post, I think I'm going to make a new friend today...or maybe scare the bajeebers outta somebody. I'm going to knock on someone's door and ask if they wanna come out and play!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

I may have said this a time or two or twenty before, but Fall is my favorite season! It makes me want to wear heavy woolen socks and nest....not WEAR a nest (noun), NEST (verb)...Here are a few reasons why...

Harvesting the final pickings from the garden.

Creamy soups in the crockpot...Yumm-O!

Candles. Every room in my house has 'em. Just doesn't seem like fall till ya burn some candles!
(Ugh!) Halloween decor.
I limit mine to a very small space in the entry.
bah humbug!
(Halloween is not my favorite holiday)

And BAKING! Although the colors look a little washed out in this picture, these cookies are the easiest and yummiest take on a sugar cookie you'll ever wrap your lips around! A little cream cheese frosting, some sprinkles...True taste-bud heaven! Only 3 ingredients: oil, eggs, and ....

A cake mix! I found the recipe (and more) on duncanhines.com
So quick and easy! 1/3 cup oil, 2 eggs, cake mix.
Combine, roll into balls, bake @ 350 for 10 minutes. Done!
from this...

...to this...

...to this, in less than 15 minutes.
Seriously, the fastest neighbor treat ever!

Did I mention that I love Fall?

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Inspiration Comes for Many Reasons

My husband called driving home from his meeting at the church tonight. Seeing who it was on my caller ID, I was preparing to give him my "hello" with a reason to come home. Somehow, in that instant between picking up the phone and saying hello, I thought twice about what I was about to say, and before I said anything I hear on the other end "hihoneyyouronspeakerphonewiththemissionaries!" Eeesh!! He was bringing them over to do a little grocery shopping from our pantry, because it was transfer day and they didn't have time to go to the store. Very sweet boys. I'm so grateful for little inspirations that we get...and for a husband that can spill out nine words in a split second!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Visitor from Virginia

We had a special visitor last weekend. My eldest brother, Gordon, came from Virginia to meet the man who everyone has told him makes me so happy, and to spend a couple of days with us. Gordon (Gordy to me) has a very kind, gentle spirit. He is a good man and we had some good conversation about the Gospel. Ron had the opportunity to answer some of his questions about the Church and I gave him a Book of Mormon while he was here. I love my brother.
Breakfast at the Pinecone Cafe

Friday, October 21, 2011

Costume Surprise!

My cute little daughter sent me a text yesterday. My phone had completely died, so it was charging and I didn't get the message until last night. She wanted to show me her Halloween costume....

This is how she told me she was expecting baby number 4! We are thrilled to have grand baby number 16, due in April!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Sleeping Grace~fully

Is there anything sweeter than a sleeping baby? This is Gracie...Grand baby #13 of 14. One of only four grand daughters.
"...rest your head close to my heart, never to part, baby of mine."
~ Disney's Dumbo

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

New Grandson

We have a new grand baby! Daniel Peter May, born at 10:20-ish this morning. Weighing 5 lb. 13 oz., 18" long. Not bad for being a month early. Mommy and bebe are doing great! The grandchild boy/girl ratio in this family  is 10 - 4. We girls are outnumbered for sure!

                                                          Baby Daniel

                                                          The new big sister...

This is how our conversation went this morning. Me: Annabelle, you get a new brother today! Annabelle: NO!  Me: Won't that be fun to have a new baby brother at your house? Annabelle: I don't WANT it!
Hmmm.... Denial isn't just a river in Egypt.


Sunday, October 16, 2011

Sharing your testimony is a gift

I have this amazing friend. She can do everything well. She is talented and funny and kind and generous. She has no clue how awesome she is. How is this possible?? Today she gave the lesson in Relief Society. A fabulous lesson...the kind that the entire class has comments to make and the Spirit is there testifying to your heart...the kind of lesson that makes you leave wanting to do better and be better. She bore her testimony of the Book of Mormon, saying,  "....I cannot separate myself from it." It was powerful. It was just the way I wish I could-would-should bear my testimony of the Book of Mormon. Thank you my dear friend.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

He Calms

Sorry about that. Not thinking. The MRI is to get to the bottom of headaches and migraines I've had for years, but are coming with more frequency lately. Really, not a big deal. Just seein' if a picture of the ol' noggin' will tell them anything. Thanks guys!

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Friday, October 14, 2011

"I'm Ready for My Close-Up Mr. DeMille"...

...My really, really, close-up!
Today I had my first ever MRI...and hopefully, my last. It was a consecutive, repetitive, symphony of a Jack Hammer...if your upstairs neighbor was jack hammering his floor, a doorbell that didn't ding...only donged, a sewing machine ...no, a sweat shop full of sewing machines, and a cruise ship horn...if you were standing 2 feet from it. Oh, and "easy listening" >yeah, right< tunes playing in the background. That wasn't the bad part though. The really bad part is, I'm kinda claustrophobic. Oh I had flashbacks of playing hide-n-seek at Kristie Nebeker's house, and hiding under her bed, then having Kerrie Nebeker slide in after me... pinning me between her and the wall...I remember freaking out! Telling her to "get out get out get out!!" Not pretty.
So, here I am today, going into this little opening of a tube, with a giant head set and a cage over my face, and I'm told I can't move for twenty minutes, then they'll pull me out, shoot me with dye, and put me back in to finish my concert series for another ten minutes. I closed my eyes and said to myself  "puppies, waterfalls, green grassy meadows..." All the while trying not to hyperventilate...or sneeze...or cough...  or something else ... Actually, when I started going into the "tube" and I felt like I was going to lose it, I asked Heavenly Father for help. You know, that's the wonderfulness of our Father in Heaven...He hears your prayer (or inwardly, freaked out cry for help), He knows you're in need, and He answers. In all honesty, I was calm throughout the entire process. I love our Father in Heaven.

                                                                        The Tube

...yer diggin' the polka dot gown, aren't ya?
"...puppies, rainbows, waterfalls..."

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

L.O.V.E. Letters

I received a love letter today. It began:

Dear Mrs. Williams,
We are pleased to inform you that the results of your mammogram performed October 7, 2011, are normal.

.....doesn't get much lovelier than that! October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. If you are over 40, and I know most of my thousands (insert sarcasm here) of readers are, get a mammogram. If you are my daughter, daughter-in-law, step-daughter, step-daughter-in-law, a girl friend, or a stranger that I've never met...do your monthly breast self-exam. Know what they (your breasts) feel like so if something feels different you'll be able to tell.  How many times did I use the word breast (and not once did I use the term boobs) in this post? Here's to hoping all your letters are love letters. ~K.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


It was kind of a blustery day out today. The kind of weather that makes you want to stay inside curled up in a comfy chair with a cup of cocoa and the newest issue of any design magazine. But I was out doing errands and as I drove home from Trader Joe's, a gust of wind picked up the leaves and swirled them across the road. It was really pretty. I think I love fall not only for it's present beauty, but for fond memories from the past, like:
  • school starting
  • butterflies in my tummy for the first day of school (I still had those for my kids first day)
  • the smell of the furnace kicking on for the first time
  • leaves changing in the mountains
  • finding the prettiest leaves to take to school
  • shopping for new school clothes
  • the waxy smell of a new box of crayons
  • football games
  • shopping for a Homecoming dress
  • my first kiss
  • bon fires
  • trick or treating
  • sorting out Halloween candy in piles from best (Milky Way bars) to ickiest (root beer barrels)
  • getting a new tray of Prang watercolors at school
  • my mom making oatmeal in the morning
  • the smell of chocolate drop cookies baking when I came home from school
  • the sound and smell of school buses passing
  • the "regular-ness" of knowing the seasons will fall into place
  • the crispness of the air
  • watching the World Series on TV
  • not knowing who's in the World Series, but being with your friends so it didn't matter
  • wearing sweaters
  • ...and boots
  • the cool mornings when you wear a sweater and the warm afternoons that you wish you hadn't
  • the crunchy sound of leaves under your feet
  • making caramel apples
  • The ward fall bazaar
  • That last really warm day that you can be outside having a picnic
What are some of your fall memories?

Friday, October 7, 2011

An Ounce of Prevention ...or My Mammogram, a Smashing Success!

I just got home from the Carol Milgard Breast Center. I had my not so yearly mammogram done. It was quick. It was painless. And they gave me a free drinking cup!
I had lunch with a friend and then we went together and had it done. It's just one of those things that I kept putting off, and she kept putting off. So together, we motivated each other to get it done! How about you? Have you had a mammogram lately?

Couldn't we all be a little more...?

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Our Fabulous trip to Utah

 We were able to make a trip to Utah over Conference weekend. We packed alot in our 4 1/2 day's there. Here are a few highlights.

With dear friends Heather and Bob, at General Conference

After the morning session, on Temple Square.

cousins Gracie, Coleman, Ella, Hudson and William at dinner.

We were able to see all 5 grand kids from my side...
...and 5 of the 8 from Ron's side.

cousins Logan, Tyler and Landon having breakfast

Nathan and Bryce with Grandma Kathleen and Grandpa

We took a ride up American Fork Canyon to see the fall leaves....Beautiful!

Of course, seeing our children and grand babies, attending conference and listening to the Prophet and Apostles speak to us were the highlights of our trip. But we squeezed in a whole lot more. We had dinner with the kids, breakfast with my sister and nephews, got my hair cut (bless you Janika!) took flowers to mom and dad's cemetery, watched Dumbo, Rio, and Conference on T.V. ...went to a (sort of) soccer game, and a (sort of) pewee football game, helped ready Erin and Ben's (huge) lot for grass, by raking and picking up rocks - I totally had flashbacks from 1975 picking up rocks (boulders) from the lot my parents built their house on. Ate yummy baked oatmeal and homemade rolls, slept in three different beds (thank you Shannon and Erin!), went birthday shopping with a 7 year old, and laughed my head off at our 2yr. old grandson who said "hey baby!" to me. We drove up one of the beautiful canyons of Utah to see the fall foliage and got a mini botany lesson on quakies from my son-in-law Ben. I never cease to be wowed by the beauty that Heavenly Father has created simply for our pleasure! We are truly blessed.