Thursday, April 28, 2011

Driving home from Utah....

Before I post the pictures and fun stories about my visit with my children in Utah. I have to post a scary experience I had driving just for personal history sake!

MaryAnn Stephens and I drove straight through both ways trying to make the most of what little time we would have while out in Utah. MaryAnn was picking up Jessica from BYU and bringing her back home and needed another driver to make the trip. So of course since I have 3 kids in Utah and 2 at BYU, I'm always game for going out, and the bonus is its always fun when you are going with such a good friend.

Funny thing is, I drive great at night, but have trouble staying awake during the day, and MaryAnn drives better during the day and has trouble staying awake at night so we are the perfect team drivers.

On the way back from Provo, MaryAnn had a Uncle who had passed away and the funeral was in Colorado Springs, which proved to be just too close for MaryAnn not to be able to go be apart of, we drove through the night to get to Colorado springs in the morning, just in time to go to the service.

While driving during the night at about Vail, Colorado, it started snowing and not just a little snowing but slippery, lots of snowing, following a snow plow kind of snowing.

Then somewhere in New Mexico, a big coyote ran out in front of the car and then changed its mind and turned back around, which was totally in front of our tires and car....but MaryAnn was quick and we got around it. We both saw lots of animals run out in front of us but nothing that scary......until....

I was 15 minutes from home driving down 1-35 towards Altamesa exit at 5:00 am in the morning. Still dark outside.....when all of a sudden in my lane my headlights come upon this large black bump in the middle of the road, so I swerve to get around it and right in front of my headlights when I swerve into the next lane is a woman walking across all those lanes of traffic and I mean just walking as if you do it every day and in no hurry, so I swerve to miss her as she bends down to pick up the dead dog in the middle of the road.....but really, who does that!!! I really almost hit someone!

Because of swerving, MaryAnn woke up to see the woman on the ground and thought she was trying to commit suicide and was really startled by what she saw. But I told her it wasn't that, although she almost did get run over, she was picking up a dead dog off the highway!

Heavenly Father really answered our prayers for safety and protection and to be warned of any danger on this trip!

So glad to be home!!!

One fun thing that I loved on the way home was in Texas, between Amarillo and Fort Worth, there are a lot of small towns you drive through. And even though I don't remember which town it was - I loved when I drove through the town, all quiet and driving with everyone sleeping, and one of the banks had one of the lighted signs outside it that does advertising etc... but this morning it just kept flashing "He is Risen" over and over! Loved it!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

New Bishopric in our Ward

Sunday, Alan was made the 1st Counselor to the Bishop, being released as the 2nd Counselor. And the new 2nd Counselor is David Ukle.

The funny thing is with it being Easter and all, and with just getting in to town that morning at 5:30 am from my trip to Utah, I totally forgot and went home after church. Alan called and said, "Where are you? Everyone is waiting to get set apart as the new Bishopric!"

Wow, talk about unbelievable. I asked Alan what I should they do it without I make them wait longer until I can drive back etc...

Alan said that he really wanted me there (I really wanted to be there too!) so I grabbed Aileen and we headed back to the church as fast as I dare go!

When I pulled into the parking lot, Aileen looked at me like "Hey, what are we doing back here? I thought I was home for lunch!" but she was a good sport and so was the Stake President!!!

How embarrassing!

Great Ladies!

I realized that I have put up many pictures of sisters that I visit teach, with one HUGE exception...........I have not told about the sweetest sisters you could ever know. I decided I needed to correct this matter and tell you a little about Mary Arrington, and Anita Williams

They are wonderful women, who MaryAnn and I have Visit Taught for several years now, who are faithful, serve others, always positive and smiling, and are really about the sweetest friends and sisters you could ever have!

Mary is Anita's mother who lives with Anita and it is not hard to see that the apple did not fall far from that tree in all the right ways! Mary is always happy and smiling and I love her smile. She always asks about my family and worries about our health, when really we are always praying for hers. She has great testimony building stories to share and fun ones about raising a large family. She is a dear!

Anita always goes the extra mile in her callings and is someone you can count on! She was my visiting teacher for a while before I was hers and she always did the most thoughtful things. I remember one time specifically that it was Prom for Allison and Anita brought over a gift bag with several items to help celebrate this special night for Allison, a disposable camera, a small photo album etc... It meant a great deal to me that she would remember such a special occasion for my daughter! She was very thoughtful with notes, phone calls, and visits as well as meals even when I told her it was unnecessary......she did it anyway.

I hope that I have followed her example and been as good of a VT to her as she was to me!!!

I do love these ladies and feel very blessed to know them!

Afternoon delight.......

Nothing better than a movie in the middle of the afternoon! Several weeks ago, Kathleen Brackney made bread for my Sunday School, Gospel Doctrine Class. Some with leaven and some without. When I asked what it would cost me for her to do this HUGE favor, she said..... "a Thank You!" which of course I did say and say often! But I also asked if I could take her to the movies!! She liked the idea and we set a date! Then she said she would really rather just watch a video at my home. Laura (her mom and my friend), Kathleen and I all sat on my bed and had good "movie junk food" and watched "Tangled" which Laura and Kathleen had never seen! It was great fun and I'm so glad I got to have this special time with one of my seminary students who is all grown up and in college etc....

It was a fun time. And Kathleen should write movies for Disney, she knew everything that was going to happen before it happened, or at least she said how she thought it should go and she was always exactly correct!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Jelly watches....

I have no idea if that is what they are really called or not....but I love mine and have a couple of different colors of jelly (plastic rubbery) watches. At Thanksgiving time when Allison was here we went shopping and I got Allison a couple of colors and sent some back to Utah for Anne Marie. Well......after Allison and I went shopping we showed my sister, Elizabeth, the watches, which she had never seen, but loved and she said, "oh, you can buy me a purple one!" and then we all laughed because of course she was just kidding about me buying her one.....BUT, I put it in the back of my mind that when her birthday came around I was going to buy her one. I never talked about it, which I know is hard to believe, I just kept thinking how for her b-day I would surprise her with it.

On Elizabeth's way back from Houston, for work, we met in Arlington at "Rudys", who has great BBQ by the way, for dinner and so I could give her, her birthday present. She could not figure out what I was so excited about until she opened it and then she remembered and and she said....."I really do love this! Thank you!"

Because Elizabeth can pretty much buy what ever she wants (i.e. her new Harley Davidson) or needs it is hard to get her something that surprises her and that she really enjoys so it was a fun night for me!!!

Elizabeth is always the one "buying" and "doing" for everyone else. It was so nice to "buy" and "do" for her! It really is the simple things! Love you Elizabeth!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Easter Decor and more......

I was so bad at decorating my house for Christmas, I definately wanted to make sure and get all my Easter stuff out!!! I hadn't seen it in a while as it had all been packed away in storage so long...but here it goes....

The wood decorations I made. The snow globe was given to me by a dear friend in Wichita, Vicky Burdick, who knew I collected snow globes and so she started given me ones for each holiday. The glass/plaster Easter eggs in the basket where made by Aileen at school several years in a row so that made it fun as she decorated them for me! The gardening Rabbits are my Moms and remind me of her and she loved to have a beautiful garden. Click on collage to see items bigger!!!
It looks like home girls!!!

Even though the Easter Bunny and such are not religious they do remind us of the time of year that it is and I am happy to have decorated this special holiday to celebrate the Resurrection of our Savior!!!

He does live for us!!!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Conference Weekend and Birthday lunch!

My conference weekend started out so fun! One of my visiting sisters and awesome friend moved out of our Ward and while that makes me very sad, the good news is that she is not so far away that we cannot get together!!! Yipee!!! MaryAnn (my partner) and I were not able to celebrate Ashley's birthday before she moved so we got together at the Cheesecake Factory on Friday to celebrate!!! And boy was the food good and the company even better!!! Oh, how I love this girl! She very quickly came to feel like not only a friend but like one of my daughters and I treated her as such (she didn't seem to mind, you can always use more mom's!!!) it helped to fill a void in my life with my grown daughters living so far away. She really has blessed my life in so many ways!!! I will miss seeing her in church and being her Visiting Teacher, but the best part about VT, is it helps you to become lifelong friends and to change each others lives! I know that Ashley has changed mine forever! And since we are friends we will still be going to movies and lunches and keeping up with each others lives. We already have plans for a movie. We will just have to make sure we put in the extra effort to make time to keep in touch!!! Love you Ashley and can't wait for your new Ward to meet you and your awesome family!

Then Saturday and Sunday it was so wonderful to listen to all the Apostles and Prophet on General Conference and remember the important things of this life and what my ultimate goal is, i.e. to be an eternal family, to return to live with my Savior and Heavenly Father again, to repent of my sins, to listen to the Holy Ghost and receive personal revelation etc. All the talks were excellent and I took lots and lots of notes as always. And really enjoyed just staying in all weekend and getting spiritually rejuvenated again!