Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Stirred My Soul to Tears

When we moved to Aubrey over two years ago, we met the Bishop, Trey Martino, his wife Patti and we became instant friends.  Over the years, we have had dinners here and there, done activities together, and just continued to enjoy spending some fun time together.  Trey and Del, especially, seem to have a bond or link of friendship/kinship for each other - mostly because Del is the one who replaced Trey as Bishop of our ward.
A few weeks ago, Trey called Del and invited us to join them for dinner and a play/musical.  I was hesitant to accept as it was the night of the BYU/Boise State football game and I really did want to stay home and watch it on tv.  But, we accepted and got all dressed up to go.  Upon arriving at their home, we immediately spent the first half hour just catching up with each others families etc...and then arrived at the restaurant - 'Hannah's' - another new place we had never heard of.  Because they are from Denton, they seem to know all the quaint little hide away places that are not well known to the general public.  This was a place we had never been.
Conversation was easy ..the four of us could talk forever and never bore of our stories and experiences - We ordered dinner, and when it arrived, I was pleasantly surprised to see how it looked - but even more so, how it tasted.  The best steak tenderloin I had ever had.  And rightly so, when Del told me later on that evening, that my plate had been priced at $33.00!!!
Then it was off to the theater...to see Les Miserables.  We had seen the movie over a year ago with some famous actors, but not really musicians.  It was only so/so and there were even a few parts that I remembered to be slightly 'inappropriate' for my liking.  I was a little nervous to see this, but Patti assured me that with local talent from the University and neighboring cities, they would probably not emphasize those parts.  And, my expectations really weren't that high for the whole performance - I mean, how good could local talent, non professional really be???
To say it was a performance I will not soon forget, would be an understatement.  The roles were sung by beautiful, talented artists.  They were good - I mean really good.  And I'm a music snob.  I like good voices, but I really appreciate a beautiful voice.
But it was when the male lead role of Jean Valjean sang his first note, I was spell bound.  I could not take my eyes or ears off the man.  What a voice - beyond beautiful - a tenor - floating. He was Broadway talent hiding in Denton Texas.  Not just in Denton Texas, but for heaven's sake, the man is a High School Teacher - a basic 'no-body unknown tenor goldmine' hiding in a Texas high school!!!
As the evening went on and he continued to perform, I was more and more impressed with the whole play, but near the end, when he sang a certain song, I cried.  I literally could not breathe, could not speak and I could not contain my tears.  My soul had truly been touched.
I won't say more, except when it was his turn to take the final bows, I cried still - and then I was afraid the cast would be in the foyer to greet guests as they left and I would run in to him and not be able to express my profound emotion of his performance.  I was glad to hurry out of the theater.
I haven't felt like that in years.  I was moved enough to even try and find out an address to the school where he teaches so I can send him a thank you note.  I have to.  I will.

Bliss Halloween Carnival

Every Year, my office joins with the neighboring offices, and we throw a Halloween Carnival for all of our family, patients and friends. This year, our office was..'The Bliss Witches', minus Becky, who had been in a car accident and couldn't be there.  But we had a lot of fun dressing up and handing out candy.
Of course, my main fun was seeing my grandchildren come - and not recognize me at first.  In fact, I put poor little Emerson into tears at first, until he heard my voice and realized it was his Nana.  The same with Madi - Preston came in, looked at me strangely, and then said - 'Oh, it's my Nana'.  Madi wouldn't even come in the door until I started talking to her - and even then, she stuck right with Papa and wouldn't let me hold her or touch her for about an hour.  She did NOT like her Nana being a green wicked witch -
Friday Night is Halloween and Mike and Kylie have invited us all to go out and go trick or treating with the kids.  More fun to come...

Thursday, October 23, 2014

This Was a First - Jalepenos

Our one lone jalapeno plant produced an outrageous amount of very hot jalapenos.  To the point, that we couldn't give them away anymore, so we decided to pickle them - We had never done them before, but thought to ourselves..'they have them in the stores in bottles'...so...we did it.
It was a lot more involved than we thought it would be and we learned a few lessons on the way -
1-always wear gloves.
2-even when the gloves come off, don't touch your face or eyes.
3-step away every ten minutes - breathing the fumes from the peppers in harsh on your breathing.
4-canning them does NOT lessen the potency of the pepper - they're still very hot!!
5-jalapenos should not be consumed more than once a week - at the most.

A new experience - a new challenge.

The Pumpkin Patch

My children took their children to the Pumpkin patch for Halloween -
And these were the pictures they sent me.
I'm busting with joy...

Love My Job

Just one of our typical days on our lunch hour...

Another Sunday Night Means More Pictures

My kids make fun of me because of how many pictures I always seem to be taking of every move my grandchildren make.  I want to document everything so I have something to look back on and remember what happened.
Okay..Yes..I do get carried away sometimes - to the point that Jordan asked me last Sunday, 'How many different times can you take pictures of dad and Preston making smoothies and milkshakes?'
Well, I guess the answer is...every time they make them, I will be taking a picture of it.  Preston will always remember that he and Papa made milkshakes together and that when Preston came out to Papa's farm, he always got to play outside, make a fire, play in the dirt and make milkshakes.
And then there's Madi.
Yes...that picture of her is her climbing up the ladder in the chicken coop.  We were all doing other things and not watching her and the next thing I knew, there she was...trying to join the chickens in their laying area...Mike about lost his marbles, he was so grossed out.  I found the whole thing funny enough that instead of running to get her out, I ran over with the camera to document the humor of it.  Mike was NOT amused.  But I have the picture to bring me many years of smiles and fond memories.

It's Not Professional, But It's Us

Before Kathryn left on Sunday to drive back to Utah, I decided to have Cam take a few family pictures of us...nothing special - no notice to anyone - but just us on a Sunday night.
Not too bad, huh!!??

Thought I Would Keep it Real

The Young Women Presidency was in charge of the Ward Fall Activity this year and asked each auxiliary to be in charge of two carnival games each for the kids and adults to play.  My idea for a kissing booth got nixed by the Bishop, so we decided to do a 'cup cake walk' and 'bobbing for apples'.  I decided to dress in character and be a witch.  Needless to say, it went over well with the sarcastic and smart mouthed men in the ward and even better with the Primary kids.  Emerson dressed as my little flying monkey.  A hugely successful evening -
I will be the same witch for my work Halloween Carnival next Monday night -
It's who I am....

Techno Retard

This is what it takes to watch tv at our house.
I can't do it.
Just show me the football button and I'm good to go.

Now We're Getting Serious!!

Look what arrived while we were in Utah.
Del had told me he had ordered some food storage - but dang...he didn't tell me how much!!
And while in Utah, we went in to the Emergency Essentials Store and had decided we wanted to get a few things - so we ordered them, and a few days after the cases of food arrived, we saw our new HUGE pressure canner, electric wheat grinder and hand wheat grinder arrive.  It's like Christmas around here.  We are so excited to see our shelves in our closets, under our beds and in our spare rooms full of cases of food - and now with the extra large canner, we are going to be able to double our work in a shorter amount of time.  And the wheat grinders???  I never thought the words would come out of my mouth, but I'm actually going to ask my mother how she used to make hot wheat cereal, and we're going to give it a try!!!  Yep, you read that right!!  I'm going to eat hot wheat cereal again.  But now that I'm an adult, I'm not going to put honey on it, I'm going to put sugar - and LOTS of it!!!
And homemade wheat bread will become a weekly staple at our house again...

Kathryn Home For the Weekend -

Kathryn's friend Cam, whom we met up in Utah last week, was driving to Texas to visit his grandparents who live in Denton - SOOOO...guess who hitched a ride with him??
Actually, Cam drives a jeep that is a gas hog - so they actually drove Kathryn's car and shared the gas cost, which was a lot cheaper.  Kathryn was missing her niece and nephews, so it was a good excuse to come down and see all of us and enjoy some much needed time with the kids...