Monday, September 24, 2012

Me, at Age 52

I'm trying to find a new profile picture...but I still haven't taken one that I like better than the one I already have.
I can see where I have gained 10 pounds back...
Still trying to get it off...

Downtown Aubrey

This is the corner store of a LITTLE strip mall in the old part of Aubrey.

The strip mall.

Aubrey Town Hall

Corner Antique Store.  This little place was the first place that I fell in love with.  It has the cutest old furniture and antiques.

This Mom's on Main place has the best hamburgers, I'm told.

The sign to the entry way of our sub-division.

Unless you slow WAY down, you'll miss downtown Aubrey, if you blink.  But it's adorable.  And we DO have a Sonic burger place, a Subway sandwich place, a Diamond grocery store AND a Taco Bell.  One more gas station, corner Pharmacy and the littlest of a post office ALMOST make us LEGIT.
But just you wait...we're gunna be big someday...the minute we get a McDonalds, you better take note.

The 'Locals' Come Out For a Good Cause

I'm pretty sure they are visitors...not locals, and the 'cause' was for a charity event 'Spokes for Hope'.  At least I THINK they are.  I haven't seen any of them at the local WalMart or the corner gas station, so I'm figuring they are just 'passing through' for charity.
But they were nice enough people.  I came through 'town' on my way home from work, dropped off all my groceries and then went right back out (4 minutes away) to go back and take pictures of the event.  It got to the point that many of them thought I was the 'local' photographer for the paper and they started 'posing' for the pictures I was taking.  Great people...just LOOKED like thugs.  That wasn't nice...but you know, they have a 'past' reputation..Harley Davidson, Hell Angels riding thugs.  But seriously, they're just down to earth, love riding bikes type of good people.  they just happen to take over our little city of Aubrey on Saturday afternoon and I thought it was picture worthy.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

The Birthday Celebrating Starts Earlier and Earlier

It has appeared that over the past few years, the celebration of one's birthday has started earlier and earlier than the actual day of birth.  It has become a week long affair...longer than necessary but no longer than anyone wants it to be.
Jordan's birthday isn't actually until next week, on the 25th, which is a Tuesday.  But because it is in the middle of the week and may shorten or hamper the length of celebrating everyone wants to do, he wanted to start on the weekend before.  So he and Lexi came out Friday afternoon, spent time at Kylie's house doing crafts and playing with Preston until I got off work, and then they all came to our house.  Del had spent the afternoon at Jack's house, a man in our ward who is an expert barbecuer and Del came home with tons of left overs of which we used for dinner.  Lexi had done up a side dish of pasta, and then we had snacks and chips.  Jordan LOVED the barbecued ribs and then we all enjoyed the yummy flavor and taste of the beef.  Preston was very unimpressed with the whole thing and while we played games late into the night, he watched movies resting against all the cushions from the couch.
Jordan and Lexi spent the night to start all the fun the very next day.
Del and Jordan tackled some digging in the backyard.

When I got home from work at 2:00, they were just discussing the mess they had made.

The mess they made.  This is going to be my garden someday.

Ready to go shooting in the forest.

I saw them go in, but I never did see them come out.

All ready to go out to dinner...with our dates.

A new place for everyone except me and Del.

Opening presents.

Shirts and shoes...

Waddling out of the restaurant.  Good food.

It happened to be Homecoming Saturday night and after just explaining to Lexi what Texas Mum's were, look what we found when we stopped at Krogers!!!!

While the girls made Jordan's birthday dessert in the kitchen, the boys were watching football.

Nothing really funny, except the secret Kylie had just told us!!!!!
So, come Tuesday, on the actual 25th, Jordan will get a phone call...maybe.  Kind of anti-climatic from the fun weekend, but no fun was missed.
Happy Birthday to my sweet you to pieces.

Friday, September 21, 2012

The Stars are Brighter in Aubrey Texas

Del is a star gazer.
Growing up out in the country and on a farm, there were many nights that he spent out 'under the stars.
He knows his 'Dippers' and 'Milky Ways', his 'galaxies' and constellations.
I know my candy bars.
But over the years, he has been lovingly introducing me to the beauty of star gazing and showing me the beauty of the night that I've never seen before.
When we lived in Blackfoot Idaho, I had one of my first 'midnight' dates with Del.  I was 7 months prego when Del took me out into our backyard, hoisted me up onto the trampoline and we laid on our backs looking up at the gorgeous star lit sky.  He showed me a bear, some bull and what used to be 'the North Star' (I hear it's been renamed a planet now).  But it was all so beautiful living out there in the I could reach right up and touch those stars.
Lindon Utah found me back on a trampoline staring up into another beautiful country sky.  This time though, the trampoline was ground level and underneath a beautiful maple tree which blocked just a few of the sky's treasures...but it was still midnight and Del was still my date. (and I WASN'T prego).  I remember planets being found and a wolf and/or horse out of the corner of my eye. 
Last night after watching the BYU - Boise State football game, I was slightly, okay, a little more than slightly, upset about the BYU loss.  I was downright TICKED.  As we walked around the house opening windows for the cool evening, instead of locking the front door, Del took my hand and led me outside to our huge front lawn.  No trampoline to lay on so I stood in front of him and leaned back onto his chest as we looked up into the big Texas sky.
Now THAT was awesome....we saw it all - the Dippers, the animals, the planets and the stars.  It was all there, laid out in all it's beauty for us to enjoy.  The neatest thing of all was realizing that this was the star lit
sky we are going to see for the rest of our our front or back yard...This is the same sky we will share with our kids and their kids...our grandchildren.  Del will now get to point out all those memories he made for me, to our grandchildren.  Won't be quite as romantic, but I imagine it will be just as much fun...and just as memorable.
Love our Texas nights....

Self Imposed Drought you remember LAST month when we got our very first water bill???
You remember...that $900 HEART ATTACK!!??
Well, we went on a strict diet after that bill arrived....plenty of food...but NO WATER!!  Well, not really, but we most definitely cut WAYYYYY back on our water consumption; both inside AND outside the house.
The results?
Del just called to tell me the water bill arrived today.  I was nervous.  Del had told me a few days ago that he had only budgeted $300 - $400 this month hoping those figures would be high...
They were. 
We are pleased to announce the arrival of our $167.60 water bill for the month of September.
That's 'do-able'. Incredibly relieved.
I will probably plant spring bulbs in our front yard to celebrate.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

I'm the Reason

I was telling Del a few of the details of my visit to Utah and mostly about the conversations I had with both family and friends about our family and Del's health.  Everyone ALWAYS asks how Del is is his MS?  How is his job etc etc.
Over the past two years, I have answered that question the same way..that with Dels change in jobs and the birth and life of his sweet grandson, Preston, Del has a whole new lease on life.  He is and has a whole new vibrancy to his life.  All in all, he is once again, ALIVE.
I have noticed that he is more relaxed, not so stressed out and seems genuinely happy - hopeful - and renewed.
When sharing these conversations with Del last week, he stopped me mid sentence and said 'Marlys, you have it all wrong.'  I was confused.  I had seen the change in Del over the past few years.  I had seen him, especially this past year, happy - healthy - alive.
I was sitting in his lap as he told me the reason I was wrong.
'You are the reason I am happy.  YOU are the reason I am alive and happy.  YOU are the reason I am different.'
I couldn't believe what he was saying.
He continued to express that ever since I had gone through a very difficult year last year, and a very humbling change of heart, he had come to love me more and more for the new person I was becoming and allowing myself to be.
'I' was the reason he was so happy.

It was a moment I will not soon forget.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

It's Fun to be a COUGAR

The newest little Cougar in training.

The future of BYU ; quarterback position.

Any future quarterback has to have his play time....

Even our 'star' has supervised training of how 'to play'.

With Papa's help, Preston loves his fun.

Halftime is for FROG HUNTIN'.

I think they found one...

Papa forgot to let Preston 'back in the game'.

Bedtime for our little Cougar.

Preston was 'out' just minutes later.

When I came back to the front room to finish watching the game, I found Prestons toys where he had put them for the night...tucked safely behind the fireplace screen.

The next morning, (today), Preston was placed in 'time out' for a short moment for getting mad at Papa when he didn't get what he wanted...candy.

Preston and Papa caught out on the back porch enjoying the early morning quiet.

There's a history here.  BYU vs. Utah.  Rivals; back as far as anyone can remember.  And a really good time to start our newest little Cougar in his training program.
Kylie was throwing Michael a birthday party at their it was finally OUR turn to have Preston spend the night at our house.  And Del and I were pretty excited.  Not just because Preston would be coming to spend the night, but because it was the night of 'the big game'.
And everything went just as I had hoped...everything except the outcome of the big game.  The night with Preston was wonderful - he was soooo much fun...played, played and played....I snapped pictures of everything he did.  I taught him how to cheer for the Cougars...put a BYU shirt on him and we tossed the football back and forth for a long time.  During halftime, we went outside to play and he ran up and down the driveway like a madman!!  I was kicked out of my bed so Preston could sleep with Del and within Del laying with him for 5 minutes, Preston was sound asleep.  It was adorable to see the lengths Del went to to make sure Preston was safe and secure in our big bed and wouldn't roll off the edge.  Yes, it included wood, pillows and food storage.  Just use your imagination and you can pretty much imagine what Del came up with.
But to the game???  It was rough.  It appeared we were going to have our typical 'come back in the 4th quarter and win' game, but we forgot the 'win' part.  I was BEYOND disappointed.  And it was an ending that will probably never happen again and be talked about for years to come.  History was made, but not in our favor.  The game ended well past 1:30 am our time...but I didn't fall asleep until about 4:00.  I was sad.
This morning, I woke up at 9:00 after a really ROUGH and very painful night..(my shoulder).  I came out into the kitchen and front room and gazed from one end of the room to the other.  I could tell Preston and Papa had been awake for hours...literally HOURS.  There was not a single cushion on the furniture...chairs were strategically placed at each end of the room where a king sized sheet had been carefully made into a super fort cover.  His toys had been taken out from behind the fireplace screen and were hiding underneath one of the cushions where the animals were 'sleeping'.  And the Dominoes???  ALL over the front entry tile, where they had once been standing in a perfect row until I am sure, he playfully knocked the first one down and watched all the others follow right after.  Picture after picture had been drawn on the paper on the fireplace hearth with all the markers and pens that were now thrown all over the floor, many of them missing their caps.
And sitting in the middle of this horrendous mess, tucked under many cushions and surrounded by his stuffed frog and SIMBA, was Preston, watching a Land Before Time Dinosaur movie, not moving an inch and not uttering a sound.  I took pictures...about ten more of them...of every cute thing I just described, only to realize afterwards that I didn't have my camera chip in the camera.  I was so disappointed.
But I have each memory in my mind. 
And I have a new little Cougar to train...
He's going to be the best little BYU fan EVER.
I can promise you that.