Thursday, February 26, 2009

A Dead Pedestrian

I take Kathryn to YW last night - 7:00 p.m. - drop her off and start home. I'm going 45 in a 45 MPH zone coming up to a green light and going to turn left. It's NOT a green arrow, but a green light and I am able to see a good 100 yards in front of me that there is no oncoming traffic but I signal anyways. AS I AM GOING THROUGH THE INTERSECTION, I slow to about 35 taking the turn and come RIGHT ON TOP of a bicyclist and SLAM on my brakes so hard, that although in my seatbelt, I come off my drivers seat and almost go through my windshield. He, also, comes to a screeching halt, sliding on to his side and we end literally 11-12 INCHES from eachother in STUNNED silence.
He came from out of no-where - no indication that he was even there. He had no lights on his bike, was wearing no reflective gear or anything to identify himself in the dark; and he was riding down the middle of the car lane. The only reason I even saw him was because my headlights were ON TOP OF HIM and he ended up directly below the intersection street light. Until then, he was undetectable.
My first thought was, 'Kathryn driving, he would have been dead', mostly because of her 'no experience' would not have allowed her to stop in time or know which way to turn to avoid hitting him. Next thought was 'is he considered a pedestrian or a vehicle?' and my last thought was, 'it doesn't matter, he would have been dead.'
He loooked at me as if to say ,'Uh, I have the right of way..duh???" My look to him was "I don't think that matters with you splattered all over the street IDIOT". Obviously, the next stage of shock had kicked in and I WAS MAD!!! But he left...he just rode off as if nothing had happened!!
I pulled over for a minute to calm down realizing how lucky it was that I had been driving and not Kathryn. She will be driving that road every day - two to three times a day - in another week when she gets her drivers license. I don't know - I asked Del who would have been at fault - who would have gotten the ticket, who would have been sued etc etc...realizing, that no answer would have changed the fact he would have been dead. Fault wouldn't have mattered. Vehicle or pedestrain, he would have been dead either way.
I wonder if Kathryn would throw a fit if I didn't let her get her license yet???

Monday, February 23, 2009

"I'm Going Home!"

That's what Kathryn said when I told her we were going to Utah for Spring Break. She's so excited she can't stand it. My fear?? I won't be able to get her to come home when the trip is over!!!
We received Stephanie's wedding announcement and Kathryn was reading it when she realized it was during the week of Spring Break. That started the ball rolling and today, I was finally able to finalize all the arrangements for the trip. She and I will drive the van up Friday March 13th, spend the week visiting family and friends and going to the wedding, and then Jordan will come down from Idaho and he will take the van back up to school and have it for the next five and a half months working in Portland Oregon over the summer. In the meantime, Kathryn and I will fly home and we will get a new car for the family, which we are needing anyways, and have it until Jordan returns the van the beginning of the school semester in September, at which time, he will hopefully be able to buy his own car.
Get it all??? Most important part will be Kathryn and I coming home from Utah. I'm afraid Kathryn may not be the only one who won't want to come back to Texas. After being gone from work over a week and being with family and loved one's, we will find ourselves having to trick each other on to the plane to fly home. Neither one of us is real happy with life right now and Utah will be a tremendous get away from everything dealt us the past few months...but as I've been trying to teach Kathryn, 'you can't run away from what life deals you', so I'll probably be the one dragging Kathryn by her ponytail onto the plane and regretting it Monday morning back at work.
But at least the get away will happen...and we'll relish every minute of it and hopefully bring a lot of it home with us to tide us over until the next opportunity we get to 'run away from home'. Well, I consider Texas home, but in Kathryn's mind, she's running away TO home. The only thing to make it better for me would be Del being able to come with us. But unlike me, he is not able to leave work with a substitute like I can. So I will miss having him with me. But hopefully, sometime this year, Del and I will be able to sneak away by ourselves and enjoy some much needed get away time of our own.
Until then, I will enjoy this with Kathryn. It will be a LONG three weeks before we go...mainly for Kathryn, but it will be great leverage for getting her to attend Seminary every day and having a good attitude every day. Bribery??? Of course!! I AM her mother!! I do what it takes.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Guess Who's Coming to Dinner?

Every quarter, our ward does an evening of Guess Who's Coming to Dinner, where there is a host family and then 2-3 couples come making a total of about 8.
We were the host family last night and the theme was 'dutch oven' cooking. We were in charge of the main dish and the dessert of which we found two new recipes to try - stuffed pork chops and lemon cheesecake. Each guest brought something to enhance the rest of the meal.
Oh Del and I had fun with our new discoveries. Not only were they both fun to make but they were delicious. I made the cheesecake while Del spent over an hour trying to clean/fix the Whisper Mill grinder he had just ruined by trying to grind almonds into powder. It liquefied the nuts and shut down the grinder, which irritated Del to no end, but he was finally able to get it back to functioning.
The guests arrived by 7:30 or so just as the pork chops were finishing up. We don't go fancy or elaborate, as we are not 'fine china' people, but Del did have me remove the Chinette paper ware and at least put on our stoneware set. More dishes was my first thought. We had 3 couples - Rob and Melissa Baker, Bryan and Jen Isom (sp?) and then Justin and Katie Lisonbee. Some of them were just as I imagined they would be - funny, loud, sociable etc...others were NOT AT ALL like I thought they would be from what I had observed by their 'Sunday behavior'. I had thought one or two would be hard to entertain and bring out of their shells...NOPE, they were party animals. What a fun and side splitting group they were. Conversation was light and comical; dinner was YUMMY and filling and games afterwards were creative and memorable. An overall successful get to know you dinner party. Thanks to each of them and my wonderful husband, for making such a fun memory.

Friday, February 20, 2009

The Eyes Have It

Kathryn had an eye appointment this morning with our wonderful friend and past neighbor John Wimbish. We lived next door to them for three years when we first moved here to Texas and at the time, they had one little boy, Weston, who is now almost 7 years old and in the first grade. John's wife, Lori, is also an Opthomologist but works down in Dallas area, so we have always just gone to John. In the meantime, they have had two more children; one while we were still neighbors, Addie and now they have another son, Aaron, who is two. All three of my children babysat their kids and we became the very dearest of friends. We introduced the church to them, but although they never showed more than polite interest, they are very active and religious in their beliefs.
What a fun visit we had with John today. We always have such fun catching up on the past months. He thinks Kathryn needs glasses for reading so we went through the process of finding just the right prescription and frames for her and then we were on our way after a few fun camera shots.
Good people, the Wimbishes. We need to have them over for a barbecue or some missionary work again. When we were neighbors, WE had the pool and big back yard with barbecue and, they have moved to Allen and THEY have the big house, HUGE backyard with pool and so John thinks it's their turn to do the entertaining. I think we'll take them up on the invitation this year and do some fun reminiscing about past years... one of those 'simple pleasures' I want to get back to.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Simple Pleasures

Do you remember the day when we could go out on our porch and the only thing we had to do was visit with our best friend and neighbor while we watched our children play?? And it would be for hours and hours of laughing and gossiping, sharing ideas and dreams, griping about the world's problems and how we would solve them all, enjoying the summer sun warm on our faces as our children made up dances and games on the front lawn.
Those were my days in Pocatello Idaho. I was neighbors with Lisa Frost who was an inactive member of the church. Lisa smoked, drank beer and made me laugh. We raised our kids together for the 13 years we lived there. We talked church, we talked marriage, we talked kids and we talked and talked until you would think we had nothing else to talk about, but would do it all over again the very next day. Our summers were spent out on her front porch or on the porch swing. The kids would go between houses, in and out and from dusk until dawn. The winters were long, but you could still see the tracks in the snow from one front door to the other back porch. There was not much that could keep our children apart nor ruin my friendship with Lisa.
I think of her today because it was her birthday a few days ago. We have kept in touch over the years at Christmastime and special occasions, but for someone who was such a major part of my life day in and day out for 13 years, I don't understand how I let our friendship become a yearly letter. Why do we do that with people who are so significant? How do we 'just move on' with life when we could barely make our own decisions without that person for 13 years?
Life was soooo easy back then. Seriously, our biggest worries were whether or not our kids would want to eat at their own home or at Lisa's...or who's night it was to barbeque - or which movie matinee we wanted to see? We found so much pleasure in not doing anything but letting our kids play and enjoy life.
I want to go back to when simple things were enough...when we knew how to 'do without what we didn't need' instead of 'needing what we didn't have.' Too much has changed - simple kindnesses, simple thoughts, simple pleasures and simple life. Everything has become too complicated because suddenly, it's not enough in this 'not so simple world' we live in.
But I can make a small change. I can make things 'simple' again for me and my family, starting with our schedules.
Prioritize...needs and obligations come first, but even those will be weeded through to sift out the true needs from the 'I should have never said yes to that' obligation. Of course, our family commitments are first - FHE, scripture reading, prayer and relationship development (vacation and activities). And then church comes next - callings, Sunday meetings, temple attendance and an occasional assignment... After those two priorities, it get's a little tricky. Our value system in life has changed to where employment has to come next, especially in order to really be able to do anything else of, education, physical health and life long security.
Everything else, I've decided, has to be gradually weened from our lives. We are too busy to enjoy the simplist of pleasures - taking time to call a friend, picking our child up from school to take out to lunch, taking a walk in the cool evenings with our husbands or trying out a new recipe.
So, it's going to be a time of 'stopping to smell the roses' week for me, starting next Monday. I'm wanting to recognize the things that used to make me smile or sigh...when was the last time I sighed from contentment and not frustration???
Next week, I'll be able to give you that answer. So stay tuned.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

We Work Together

It's been kind of fun the past 5-6 months to have Kylie working in the office of an oral surgeon here in town. Before she started working there, I hadn't even heard of Dr. Bass. Now, I'm referring most of our surgical patients to him.
It's fun to call her and talk 'shop'; to ask her the cost of certain procedures and which insurance companies she deals with. I'm proud to tell patients that they can feel confidant going to her office because I know they will get the best of least, I know they'll be greeted with a pretty smile.
She's all grown up; a big girl now, working a big girl job. We're colleagues..and that's nice. I'm so proud of her...a little jealous...ok, no a LOT jealous...yes, she makes more than I do, but she's worth it. But she get's one more raise before I do and she'll find herself out on the street corner looking for patients cuz I won't be sending mine her way anymore!!!
Time for YOU to take ME out to lunch Kylie!!!

'On Top'

So I'm at work today and I'm into the day a good two hours or so before my phone tells me there's a text message. That first one of the day is usually from Kathryn, and tells me how the rest of the day will go. I'm holding my breath. Is she at the top or bottom of her roller coaster?
"I love you mommy".
I let my breath out, get a tear in my eye, and realize 'we're going to have a good day'.
I love you too Kathryn!

Monday, February 16, 2009

I'm Grounded

And rightly so. I overstepped my boundaries with information I shared in my last blog. Needless to say, I have a hurt 16 year old who feels I betrayed her. I guess I did.
I guess I'm learning the 'do's and don'ts' about blogging when you have teenagers in the house. They consume 110% of our time and attention and we can only share 5% of it with the world, and only with their permission. It's a very fine line we walk as parents..a tightrope with a very long fall. And fall I have.
Of course, I apologized...that won't mean anything for at least 4 more days, when she wants me to take her to get her license that dad said she could get. I guess 4 days of silence around the house won't be too bad...but heaven forbid I make the same mistake again. I won't. Once she gets her license, she shouldn't be that interesting anymore; at least until her first speeding ticket or accident. What are the rules about blogging in those instances?
Please advise...

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Tornado Overload

Eight years ago, when we lived in Lindon Utah, a tornado went through the Salt Lake Valley that both shocked and stunned all of us in Utah County. Too close, just waaayyy too close. Kathryn was just 8 years old and her phobia started at that time. We assured and reassured her that we would never live in a place where tornados would be a threat to us. Of course, we never thought we would live in Texas either.
Eight years later and moving to Texas, we have had our fair share of 'warning' and touchdown's' to last a lifetime. We arrived in Texas on Friday December 27th. The following Wednesday was January 1st, the first Wednesday of the month. At noon, to Kathryn's sheer horror, the sirens began blaring warning us of what Kathryn was sure would be her death. Phone calls came from both my sister Elaine and Bev Roberts, my BYU roommate, informing us it was only a monthly drill to prepare us for possible warnings in the future. Kathryn barely lived through the anxiety she suffered that day. I barely lived through the multiple tornadoes this week. I should have heard sirens and I should have seen some signs. But it came quickly and hit hard.
Monday evening, Del informed Kathryn that she would not be allowed to go and get her much anticipated drivers license the next day, due to missing too much Seminary and he felt she hadn't prepared enough. I felt the stirrings of the upcoming tornado and by 7:oo that evening, we were in full tornado alert. Kathryn was screaming and yelling at full throttle, Del was standing firm and trying to use reason while his 16 year old basically went balistic. Of course, I was taking the brunt of most of it...before Kathryn went storming out of the house, she blurted out that 'she figured it didn't matter since her life was over anyways because there was going to be huge fall out from an accusation she had made about a young man. Tornado touchdown! No details at this point because honestly, I don't have the energy or the memory to recall everything that happened in the next two days..I just know the police were involved, the young man and his family, school authorities, McKinney police AND school police - and then Kathryn left home.
She came home Tuesday, packed and left. It didn't help that there were actual tornado warnings OUTSIDE the doors of our home that didn't even come close to the tornado that was rushing through the MIDDLE of my home.
At about 5:00, the news reports were getting worse and worse about tornado's coming our way. I was already praying...had been for hours, that the Lord would be able to see us through this personal tornado I was being asked to weather. When things were at their peak, I received a phone call from Kylie - she had Kathryn, who was going through a total anxiety meltdown and wanted her parents. She got on the phone just as the major winds and rain hit Frisco and I talked her through most of it as she sobbed and cried that 'she was sorry and loved us and wanted to come home'. The sirens were then blaring in McKinney and she worried about us and made Kylie bring her home. Much talked about and discussed that night of which I need not share with this blog, but needless to say, I went in to what I have dubbed as 'survival mode'.
Wednesday, I didn't function - no work, no thinking, no talking to anyone, no interaction with the world. I sunk very deeply into a hole that I am just coming out of today.
The rest of the week? - I gave two week notice at work and then took it back. Then I gave the same two week notice and have not yet taken it back. We can't survive without my paycheck - at least being completely out of debt by the time we hoped to be, but is that a good reason to work? I can't leave the responsibility soley on Del to handle - it would kill him. So, I'll probably give my apologies AGAIN to my cousin Chad and tell him I'll stay.
Otherwise, we have survived the week of both 'outside' and 'inside' tornados. But we're beaten up. Kathryn is wiped. But she should be praised for her good decision in taking care of the terrible thing that happened to her. It has taken it's course with SOME aftermath, but nothing that we can't handle with the police and as a family. The school is being very protective of her..appears the young man overstepped his boundaries...enough...but lots of rumors and gossip will follow and will eventually take their toll on Kathryn.
Del has decided to listen to me a little more about how he handles the raising of our children. Del is pretty close to perfect. Always has been. His shortfall? He expects it out of every member of his family...and we just can't live up to that, so he tends to be most often, disappointed in us that we aren't quite what he thinks we should be. I have survived 26 years of marriage with him by realizing HIS expectations aren't the one's I need to meet, but mine and the Lord's. It's made live survivable. Not so much for the kids though. Jordan, more than the other two, has felt the lingering disappointment from Del. It has been heart wrenching to see Jordan so desperately try to please his unpleasable father. I have had to cover a lot of the empty space between those two.
So, I have both thanked AND questioned the Lord for the tornados that were sent to our home this week. Hearts have been softened and eyes opened to the hand of the Lord. We remain battered and bruised from the whole drama of it all, but I thank those who have been there for us in prayers, thoughts and their presence.
Now, I'm just tired. Jordan has called once or twice this past week saying he's lonely. He has no sweetheart, no unattached friends and spent Valentines Day going to the movies alone. I'm hoping the 'cousin get together' tonight will bring him out of his 'lonely' slump. He needs to get a life that is wonderful and fulfilling WITHOUT a sweetheart in it. Then, she will come along when it's the right time. Yeah, tell HIM that! Raising older teenagers is much harder than when they were 14-18. I imagine they will always have needs that only a mother can meet.
There are a few pieces of the weeks storms that need to be picked up and thrown away. And the aftermath may be evident for a few more weeks. But at least there were no eternal casualties. I can't imagine my massive headache going away anytime soon, and my diet was shot to #*@%!!! So tomorrow, we start a new week with clear skies and determination to get things back on track. No more tornado hits for at need at least a week for scars and wounds to completely heal.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Meltdown - Survival Mode

Survival Mode - bent knees, bowed head and a pleading heart.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

25 Random Things You Didn't Know About Marlys

Do you care though???
Don't we assume a lot when we think people care about stuff they don't know about us???
Okay, I think my kids might care...ok, maybe my girls...Jordan probably doesn't though.
So, for Kylie and Kathryn...and anyone who MIGHT care..
25 things about Marlys that you didn't know...cuz I've never told anyone.
1. I smoked my first and only cigarrette when I was in kindergarten - thrown out of the school bus by the bus driver.
2. I drank my first and only beer when I was three years old - neighbor in the garage down the street gave it to me.
3. I cheated on a test in US History my junior year in high school.
4. I love watching musicals - even if they are corny and outdated.
5. Like Kylie, I hate scary movies - and sci-fi Star Wars, no Lord of the Rings, no Harry Potter...nothing that couldn't be 'real'.
6. I don't like 'imaginary' things. I like life.
7. I love reading other's BLOGS and hate when I get on to read and see 'yesterday's' blog as the last one entered.
8. I have a crush on someone besides my husband. Notice, I said 'crush' - not love. CRUSH. And he's not my cousin.
9. I am for stem cell research. I also tend to be a little more liberal than some people think I
should be.
10. I love Friday's because I can do anything or nothing at all and I'm accountable to no-one.
11. I hide stashes of money for a rainy day.
12. I get my feelings hurt when I'm not included in a circle of friends that got together for lunch.
13. I love when Del and I enjoy the few 'empty nest' evenings at home we have each week.
14. I still come close to a heart attack each time I have to perform (sing) in front of others.
15. I had a breast reduction 9 years ago...used to be a 42 FF - not pretty. Now, I'm smaller.
16. Jordan really isn't my favorite child.
17. I was sexually abused by my grandfather from age 8-11 years of age. TMI??? Sorry.
18. I did not vote in the past 4 presidential elections.
19. I did not graduate from college although I did get an M.R.S. degree.
20. I LOVE blood - meaning, I love surgeries, on the body, in the mouth - I love the field of medicine.
21. I too, am lazy. I'm a terrible housewife - hate dusting, vacuming, and cleaning bathrooms.
22. I'm on Paxil - 60mg - anti-depressant - have been and most likely, always will be.
23. Del thinks I don't mind not getting birthday, anniversary or Valentine's Day gifts, but I do.
24. My favorite relaxing thing to do? jigsaw puzzles.
25. I got a speeding ticket that I still haven't told Del about...and never will.

Okay - now you know. Wish you didn't?? This IS the last time for being tagged and or confessing all my sins...

A Test of my Resolve

It wasn't as easy this week...all of it...the diet, the exercising, the studying of my RS lesson, scripture reading, prayer etc etc...I got out of a habit the very first day, Monday, when I stayed at the church while Kathryn was in Seminary and tried to get and extra half hour of sleep. It threw off the whole rest of my day. Then, it happened again Tuesday..I was very unemotional this week about everything I did. I THINK it's because I put soooo much emotion into the beginning of this diet and eating change that it's very anti-climatic already.
Soooo...I weighed yesterday at my weekly weigh in - I've lost a total of 11 pounds so far. I exercised, or walked, every day except one. But I was hungry this week. I felt deprived and even cheated once, eating 1 bite of a piece of chocolate cake at work. It wasn't even that good though, so I was disappointed in the bite and myself.
My studying of my RS lesson left me very judgemental of those who aren't living the gospel the way I think they should be...and at the same time, made me aware of my own feelings about certain doctrines of the gospel where I tend to be very critical or judgemental also - example...I am not a fond supporter of visiting teaching. I don't like to visit teach and I don't like having visiting teachers. I find it as a 'calling' or assignment, not as a pleasure or joy to do. WHY?? Because I am very selfish of my time and hate being inconvenienced..AND I hate being 'assigned' as to whom I am supposed to love and be kind to.
None of it makes fact, it makes me appear to be a very not nice person. I don't find it easy to like everyone and love everyone - I tend to choose my friends and then shut the rest of the world out. Not very Christlike huh???
I need to be a better person. Isn't that my whole goal for this new year?? To be a better Marlys? I need to LOVE more - not be so stingy with my time or affections...and be nice. I'm a very selfish person, one of the first things people probably recognize about me. Not a very nice thing to be known for, right?
Well, hopefully as these extra pounds start to shed off this old flabby body, so will some of the bad habits and undesired traits I've been lugging around for years will dissolve too.
One of the first signs of apostasy? A loss of the spirit of the Holy Ghost and his influence in our lives. I can see where I have allowed that to happen in areas such as visiting teaching, or basic kindnesses towards others outside of MY circle or comfort zone.
Awareness is a key to change. It's also very painful to realize truths about one's self; very unattractive unChristlike truth's.
Just don't let me die before I have a chance to change..doesn't change take a lifetime though? I'm running out of time...
Guess I better yesterday!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Thanks for Sharing

Some good thoughts shared this week from friends and family. Not just about the topic for my RS lesson, but about life in general.
I sure value the opinions of others...especially those of whom I have much respect for. I appreciate the similarities and the differences shared by those who have felt brave enough to share, about religious and secular subjects. I am so trying to become more of a listener than a talker, a very difficult thing to do considering the way I was raised. But the older I get, the more I realize that I still have so much to learn and not always from those who claim to 'know it all'. Sometimes, the one's who 'know it all' really know nothing that I want to know.
Make sense?
I know.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

When Does it Happen??

I'm teaching the RS lesson on Sunday - about signs of Apostacy - not THE Apostacy, but personal apostasy. When does that happen??? And how??? Doesn't someone recognize when their on the road to apostasy??? Apparently not because I have several cousins and relatives who have apostatized/and or on the road to apostasy. But again...when does that happen??? What are the first signs? What causes it? Pride? Disobedience? A lot of thoughts for the next few days....if there was something, what would be the thing that would cause me to apostatize?

Monday, February 2, 2009

A 'Super' Weekend

Yep, it was the Super Bowl this weekend, but aside from that...I lost more weight. When I weighed Sunday morning, I was down a total of 12 pounds. Of course, it was Fast Sunday BUT I had still had a very careful weekend. Kathryn and I have decided we are only going to weigh once a week though because when I weighed last night before going to bed, 3 of the pounds were back on. So no more of this weighing twice a day stuff. Once a week...Friday mornings. But I was feeling good enough yesterday that several people at church mentioned they could tell a difference and some ASKED if I was losing weight. So, this is going to be a great thing.
I am using HerbalLife along with my doctor here at work. It is a good product for me and not nearly as expensive as some of these other diet products out there these days. I'm not having to do without any foods, just smaller portions and adding walking to my life. My clothes are already fitting differently but I still have 40 pounds to go. This will most likely be a year process - at least I am giving myself to the end of 2009 to be at my goal weight. Doing without junk food hasn't been too difficult but it has sure made me realize how much I was eating of it. Smaller portions seem to fill me up with plenty of water on the side.
As far as the Super Bowl..The Pittsburgh Steelers won the game, if that matters to anyone. I was more excited about the BYU basketball game and the win we got there versus the lost we had earlier in the week to Utah!!(:!! We've had several updates from Jordan this week - he's feeling overwhelmed with school work, wrestling and his church calling. Oh, all I can do is pray for him to be able to figure it all out. He's such a good kid. I can't believe how much I miss him.
It's Monday - I hate Monday's. For me, it just means the start of another week of work. But, I'm going to try and look at it from now on as...another week to lose 2 pounds. It will be, 'not that I hate Monday's, but that I love Friday's now.' Good luck to me this week.