Wednesday, June 30, 2010


Last night our home teacher came and gave us our lesson on the lawn swings. Soon neighbors started joining us and we visited for a long time.
One neighbor gave me a great mental image to use in my life. She mentioned that at the end of the day her dad always asked, "Did you get your bucket of weeds today?" This became a habit and she still does this, she pulls a bucket of weeds and her yard is never overrun, it is always tidy, the roses have room to bloom as do her other flowers, not to mention her wonderful garden.

Last night, before we had family prayer, I mentioned to Phil that pulling just one bucket of weeds was pretty simple. Day in, day out, simple but the rewards are huge. Then I started thinking, we should do that with all aspects of our lives.

Spiritual Bucket. We try to read the scriptures in the morning before our day starts but it doesn't always get done. So simple, a few minutes prepares us for the day and yet, some days our spiritual bucket is empty. We go to church every week and Phil is serving at a BYU ward but what about reading the scriptures every morning? I think I will start reading an Ensign article with Phil before bed, too.

My housekeeping bucket is neglected often. A little work each day and then there are no gigantic cleaning projects to tackle. I got into the habit of every time I used a paper towel I then used it to wipe up part of the kitchen floor. Soon the floor around the sink and stove was clean and I was wiping up the floor by the table and back door. When I neglected this simple task the floor needed major cleaning.

Food storage bucket. I learned from my mother so it's second nature for me to have food storage. Most Mormon's do, as we have been counseled by our Prophet and church leaders on this subject for what seems like forever.

One year, as we were bottling yet another bushel of peaches, I innocently asked why my mother we had so much food storage--much more than we could eat in a year. She laughed and said, "Why, Lynne, it's for the Californians. When they have to leave California"--I don't know what she thought was going to happen--some catastrophe maybe--"they will be hungry and we will have the food to feed them?" That was that. She stored food and extra for others.

I would rather shop in my basement than have to run to the store for a forgotten item I need for dinner. I'm not perfect but I have a plan that I got from Liesa Card, who I met in Costco, peddling her book, I DARE YOU TO EAT IT. I like her blog, she has some cool ideas and it's not just all about storage but about her family as well. (Today's blog is "Frozen Hot Chocolate.") When I get my storage up to date I'll blog about it. I'm so excited to put her simple idea into a working plan. Already it has made my life easier.

Speaking of food storage plans I found another blog this morning that I'm excited to read. This girl even knows how to store cheese...for a long time. Article here. Her blog is Preparedness Pro There are lots and lots of blogs like this. What are your favorites?

Family bucket. This is a picture of two of my granddaughters having a two-and-a-half hour water fight out of a clean kitty litter bucket. (I'm eventually going to blog about this.) It took some convincing to get Hillary to drop off her girls because she was busy that day, but four of the grandchildren eventually ended up at my house--for eleven hours--and it was fun for them and fun for me too. I hope they will always remember that day with their cousins and grandma. This is an area I really need to work on. I don't have the kids here often enough.
Just plain Fun Bucket. We need more of this. The other day I said to Phil, "I want to do something fun." He asked what, and I honestly couldn't think of anything we could afford. Two days later some friends brought us a vacation package. A night's stay in Salt Lake City at a cool hotel that brings you a goldfish so you can have a pet for the night, a dinner gift card for the Roof restaurant at the Joseph Smith Memorial Building, and a gift card for a fantastic breakfast!

This is a picture of the Salt Lake Temple from the Roof restaurant. We were flabbergasted. We were, and are excited. They have filled my fun bucket with anticipation. We haven't decided when to go but looking forward to it is half the fun. Can you imagine? They are like Santa Claus and the Good Fairy, all rolled up into one. And no, I'm not going to tell you who it was. You can look at all my friends and imagine they are the ones. Won't that be fun?

What buckets do you fill on a regular basis?

Saturday, June 26, 2010


I don't know if you read my Father's Day post or not. My disaster day with the meltdown and not even giving Phil his card. Anyway, we celebrated Father's Day the Saturday before Father's Day so he did get honored and loved. All the kids came and brought food and their kiddies. That makes him happy.

Here are the children having a treasure hunt. The rule is, you can look for every clue but the only person who can find it is the one whose name is on the last clue. If they ask for help the rest of the group can give hints. They are so good about it. When we first started treasure hunts, years ago, they would yell out, "I found it!" Now they are so subtle and don't let the "finder" know they've spotted the clue.

This one doesn't take her nose out of a book long enough to hunt. She doesn't know there are memories to be had by being a part of the "cousin group."

This is what happens when you hand the camera to one of the children and say, "take photos for a minute. His sister will kill him. Her motto is, "I don't get mad, I get even."
Self portrait. And more...I didn't post most of the self portraits.
We're sometimes a weird bunch.
Each is weird in his own way.
Sometimes weirdness is exhausting!
Some do not have wierdness. They do have the most contagious laughter on the planet. I wish you could hear her delightful laughter.
And some do have the weirdness gene. Its from Phil's side of the family, I'm sure.Some find laughter in the weirdness. She's laughing because she hid the clue on the lawn swing and they can't find it.

Some have tongue in cheek because they know what's up.
Some were merely surprised when they get darted. "All right! Who which one of you hairballs shot me?" Yes, she calls them hairballs. It's part of her charm.
Some smile, some whistle or perhaps spit, in the background.It didn't occur to me to take a photo of the delicious food. Here's the serving table without all the delicious food. Do you like how the cloth is on so perfectly straight? I'm a stickler for details, yes I am. Happy Late Father's Day dear. Your card is around here somewhere, I promise.

I love you.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010


I found it. Here it is. The website is called "Deals to Meals."Now my reading the grocery ads is over. I'm going to let them do the work for me.

I Googled everything I could think of and never did find it. I found this by going back and back and back over my browsing history.

They are in 13 of the Western States so if you are in one of the 13 maybe you will want to check them out. If the items are listed in red that means the price is better than Walmart, Costco and Sam's Club.

PS They have a free two week trial.


Some time in the last month I ran onto a grocery store comparison blogish thing. For $5.00 a month they will list all the grocery ads and tell you if that is a cheaper price than Sam's and Costco.

I think I got there from someones blog by clicking a link. I've spent two days looking at my history and checking every blog. I've Googled everything I can think of but it never comes up. WHERE IS IT? If you know, will you leave the URL in the comments section. I want to sign up can I?

Thanks so much.

Monday, June 21, 2010


I usually like Sundays. In fact, they are my favorite day of the week. Yesterday was not my favorite. It probably ranks somewhere in the top 20 for awfulness.

As I sat in church I looked down and saw I had forgotten to put new fingernail polish on. Every single finger except two had missing bits of polish. That's how it started.

When the Primary kids sang I thought, Maybe my grandchildren are going to sing in their ward today at one o'clock and I will get to see them (I was going to attend Trent and Michelle's ward at 1:00 because Meghan was speaking.)

Then I slept through the Father's Day talk. It was my neighbor who I adore, but I slept. I'm sure he was brilliant. I slept, just like an old High Priest with a comb-over.

Then in Sunday school the room was hot! The teacher had beads of sweat forming on his forehead and I spent the time watching them get bigger and bigger instead of listening. (I'm sure I'm borderline ADD.)

In Relief Society the teacher showed the twenty-six minute video THE LAMB OF GOD and it distressed me. I have tender feelings for the Savior and when I saw some of the things he went through in his last days on earth...well, it made me physically ill. Heartsick. For twenty-six minutes I watched and was sad and then sadder.

I was going to go home before I went to Pleasant Grove to Trent and Michelle's ward but I took my neighbor home and we sat in her driveway and talked about all the troubles we both have and when she finally went inside I didn't have time to go home--or so I thought--and so I drove and worried about both of our troubles. For twenty minutes I worried and fretted and mentally wrung my hands.

When I got to Trent and Michelle's ward I was way early. I sat on the second row, like they always do but they were late. They must be in the back, I thought as the Bishop started the meeting five minutes late--Mormon Standard Time. And indeed, the Primary kids DID sing. But, not one of them was a grandchild of mine! That's when I finally realized I was in the wrong church house.

I had to endure the rest of the meeting, BECAUSE I WAS ON THE SECOND ROW AND COULDN'T JUST LEAVE WITHOUT MAKING A SPECTACLE OF MYSELF, knowing Meghan gave her talk and I didn't hear it. The kids probably sang and I didn't see or hear them. The woman who talked in the meeting I was in was also named Meghan. She cried all way through her talk because her dad was so SPECial. I wanted to shake her. (Bless her heart) The man who spoke after her, made a feeble joke and then talked so soft I couldn't hear him, but to be honest, by then I was so distressed I didn't care.

After church I drove around, wondering what church house I should have been to and then I drove home--I had been gone from home exactly six hours--and as soon as I stepped in the door I broke down and bawled. For an hour I bawled. Phil and Elizabeth didn't know what to do with me. (Phil had been at his BYU ward, that's why he wasn't with me.) I sobbed and boo hoo'd and hiccuped and got my Sunday clothes all wet. I handed Phil his Father's day gift, unwrapped, and said, "Here's your crappy Father's Day gift," and didn't even give him his card that I paid three dollars for. I finally went to bed.

I didn't fix dinner. Phil ate leftovers. Alone. Happy Father's Day, to you, dear Phil. And because of my attitude it was a probably his worst Father's Day ever.

And so, on all counts, I was a failure. A freaky-nail-polish-peeling, sleeping-in-church, ADDish, despondent, going-to-the-wrong-church, bawl baby, ruining-Phil's-Father's-Day failure.

If you had a worse Sunday than me, then, dear ones, you have my sympathy and love. Of course, you have my sympathy and love anyway. Sympathy, because I know we all have trials and problems and heartaches and my love just because I can. And do.

Today is a better day but I slept almost all day. And now It's thirty-three minutes after 1:00 AM and what am I doing still up? I'm setting myself up for another tired day. I don't have enough sense--as my Mom used to say-- to pound sand in a rat hole.

PS After I got home from church I checked my cell phone and at 12:58 Trent had called me and also sent a text saying where to come to church. I don't take my cell phone to church with me.

PPS At nine o'clock Meghan called me and read her talk to me. How I love her. It was a great talk and I loved it. It was about the Priesthood and one part was about when her mom had been very sick for several days and Trent and one of their home teachers gave her a blessing and she got well. And then I worried...did I know she was sick seven years ago? Did I take dinner to her or come and tend the kids? I don't remember doing it, she needed me and I probably wasn't there. More failure. Oh me, what a day. Even the best thing of the day--Meghan's talk--and I find a way to make myself feel guilty.

And if you are a woman reading this, you know exactly what I am talking about. We feel guilt, even for things we MIGHT or MIGHT NOT have done seven years ago. Oh me. Why are we like that?

Thursday, June 17, 2010


Shan (of "Shenanigans") was in a public bathroom the other day, minding her own business, when a lady came in and started talking to her--UNDER THE BATHROOM STALL.

"Where did you get your pedicure?" the cheeky woman asked.

Now Shan couldn't see the lady, mind you, she was...occupied and couldn't just ignore the woman and walk away. The woman wanted to know all the details about her pedicure and then told Shan that she needed a pedicure for a wedding and went on to explain who the wedding was for and blah, blah, blah. On and on she went, becoming more and more chummy.

"What did you do?" I asked, trying not to laugh as I pictured Shan, sitting there.

"What do you think I did? I freaked out! And then I finished, washed my hands and got out of there," she said.

So, if you see some of these toes underneath the bathroom door please do not carry on a chummy conversation with the owner of said toes. Freaking out is detrimental to Shan's mental health, especially in a confined space...and especially when she's busy... doing stuff.

And if you see this many You will be outnumbered. PS Aren't these shoes cute? I don't have a pair or you would be looking at thirty toes. I should really have a pair, I really should.

PPS A woman I know was a secretary at the Utah State Mental Hospital for years and years. After she retired she was at a loss--lonely for the odd patients she saw so often.

She was back at the mental hospital the other night for a Family Home Evening. She said a man came in in jeans and a T-shirt and he looked perfectly normal so she couldn't tell if he was a patient or a worker. And then she looked closer and realized that yes, he was indeed a patient. He was wearing sandals and sticking out from his sandals were toes, painted with bright red toenail polish. She felt right at home.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010


PS About my last post, dear Colette Amelia, this was NOT Phil and me. Although he does out eat me by a lot. I mean a LOT! And he is skinny. It's enough to hark a dog.

Every word of the last post was true except for the last paragraph. That was the "invented" part of this blog. I couldn't resist putting a little spin on the story.

If I knew who that lady was I'd do something nice for her. She's already suffered more than anyone should have to. She will remember the cruise, remember a lot of nice things they saw and did but it will always be overshadowed by the fact that she had to travel home in a fat man's used boxers. Eueue! It doesn't get worse than that. Well, maybe it does but I don't know how.

What's your horror story?

Tuesday, June 15, 2010


A week ago a husband and wife were on a cruise with my friend of mine. The night before leaving the ship everyone's luggage had to be put in the hall and would be picked up during the night for transport to the airport. The wife went to bed, the husband decided he'd like to partake of the buffet one more time. The wife is very large, the husband is pencil thin. Wouldn't you know it? He probably out eats her by twice.

When he got back he noticed his wife had left some clothes out of the suitcase so he tiptoed around, gathering things up and stuffed them into her suitcase in the hall. When they woke up (she sleeps in her underwear), and she went to get the clothes she had laid out the night before, they were gone! (Remember she is large, he is thin? She wouldn't fit into his clothes.) The suitcases, naturally, were also gone.

They had a discussion. I think crying was involved. I don't know which one cried--maybe both.

Her husband frantically knocked on every door in their hallway, asking if anyone had clothes that would fit his wife. Finally, a very large man at the very end of the hall said, "Well, I have some boxers you could have."

picture these, size 52

The husband had somehow missed gathering the women's blouse--a little shell top--so she dressed in this, and the boxers--no jacket, not one other item of clothing, other than her underwear and shoes. Can you imagine flying for ten hours in a skimpy top and a fat man's boxers?

As they disembarked everyone who had a camera took a picture of her. She was humiliated but held her head high. When they got to the airport it seemed every single tourist also had a camera and they all took a picture of her. She is probably on YouTube, as we speak. It was getting harder and harder to hold her head high. She just wanted to go home.

When they ran into Mr. Boxer in the airport she humbly thanked him for the loan of the boxers and asked for his address so she could launder and return them.

"Oh, don't bother," he said. "They're just an old pair, and anyway I had already worn them for three days ."

And that is why she is in court today, explaining why she caused a public disturbance in an international airport. "Shaken-husband-syndrome" is now in the medical dictionary. I don't know what she did to Mr. Boxer but I'll bet it made the news.

Saturday, June 12, 2010


For years I have been chucking papers in boxes next to the computer. Things like stories that had been work shopped and need to be fixed. Copies of church talks I'd run off and fully intended to read--I fully intended to study them, actually--and have great life-changing epiphanies. There were even grocery ads in there. Recipes. Post-it notes. Photos. Pictures I wanted to watercolor--an especially nice one of Michael's. All kinds of stuff was there. You name it, it was probably there.

Three weeks ago Phil took all these boxes upstairs and said, "Here!" His unspoken message was, "Get rid of this junk or I will be insane along with you." Two insane people are too much for one house so I started. and then I restarted. Then I became overwhelmed and I ran away. Then I came back because I am fond of sleeping on a bed instead of the lawn swings. And then I got down to business. And now the living room looks like this. That doesn't look too bad unless you live here. Even when I have only one working eye--you'd think I could only see half of it--but no, even a one eyed person can tell this is really bad. I am still overwhelmed.

The mess wasn't bad enough so...I decided to do something about pee-pee doggies odor. I scattered three cups of baking soda on the floors. Three cups in the family room and three cups in the living room. Have you ever scattered three cups of baking soda in a room? It goes everywhere. Every surface is covered, even though I was careful. If people had shoes out--coughElizabethandmecough--their shoes got covered. It looks like no one has dusted in three years and I make a point of dusting every year or so, honest I do.

So, tonight I made the youngest shoe-offender vacuum and now I am ignoring the piles in the living room and I am going to check things with the black light and use some kind of miracle liquid that guarantees to work on stains and odors. There are no stains, because years ago we picked a carpet color that looks like dirt. Or maybe it looked like something else way back when and now it looks like dirt. But...there are odors. And I intend to sleuth them out.

And I should clean up this clutter too but I just can't do it yet. It shows me that people love me and brought me cards and goodies on my birthday. Some even sang to me. I think this is nice clutter.
I have only two thank-you notes written.

Humm...maybe I should write thank you notes and leave the black light business until later. What do you think? Cleaning or thank you notes?

Wednesday, June 9, 2010


Mrs. Bird is suffering from back pain. One day she had been visiting at my across-the-street-neighbors and was walking home. She only had to walk past seven homes but at house number two and she felt funny. Woozy. She called her daughter and said, "Come and get me." She had to sit down on the curb she was so woozy.

"Where are you?" her daughter asked.

"Five houses away."

Her daughter, naturally, was mystified. "Just walk home," she kept saying but Mrs. Bird was incapable of walking home. When she got home she took the "pain patch" off and recovered. She threw the rest of them in the garbage and they are now in the landfill.

So, her doctor gave her a prescription for pain pills. The first was Oxycontin. Great! No pain but the symptoms were unbearable. Things like dizziness, weakness, light headedness, and the list went on. Mrs. Bird flushed the Oxycontin down the toilet.

"Do you know the street value of Oxycontin?" I asked.

Mrs. Bird just looked at me with an, I-can't-believe-you-just-said-that look.

"So," she said, ignoring me, "the doctor gave me a prescription for Percocet."

"And..." I said. There is always an "and" when Mrs. Bird is telling a story.

"Well," she said, "I was so nauseous I could hardly get off the bed."

"And so...?" I asked. There is always an "and so" when Mrs. Bird is telling a story.

"So, I flushed them down the toilet."

"Do you know how much the street value of Percocet is?" I asked.

"Lynne," she said. "Do you think I'm going to go stand on the street corner by the high school with a sign that says, 'Pain pills for sale?'"

"Well, no," I said.

But the image of her doing that was very enticing. I can just hear her talking to Officer Friendly.

"But officer, I'm sure there are kids in pain and I was just trying to help. And besides that, with this economy like it is right now.... I'm sure you are feeling it, aren't you? And do you have pain somewhere?"

And then he would tell her--because she is so friendly--that he does have pain. Sitting in a squad car all day, handing out tickets to people who are going to lie to you or cry or both is just more than he can take some days.
Mrs. Bird is very sympathetic. And understanding. She invites confidences.

Then I wake up and realize that that Officer Friendly isn't going to be hoodwinked by a pair of sparkling blue eyes.

"Just come quietly and there won't be any trouble," I can hear him saying.

And then I see her, making her one phone call from jail.

And then I see her husband, Mr. Personality, saying, "You are WHERE?" And then I see him laughing so hard he can hardly stand up. You'd think he had seven or eight pain patches on, he is so weak from laughter and falling all over the place.

In the back of my mind I'm thinking about those expensive pain meds being flushed down the toilet and that somewhere, downstream, there are fish who don't give a darn if they are caught or not because THEY ARE FEELING NO PAIN.

Mrs. Bird now takes Ibuprofen like the rest of us.

PS I KNOW that the pills aren't flushed downstream. They go to a treatment plant. And somewhere, there are treatment plant worker who are FEELING NO PAIN.

PPS I know that doesn't work either but it make a better story this way.

PPPS And somewhere, there are landfill rats that are FEELING NO PAIN as they are wearing Mrs. Birds pain patches. And it's only right. If you have to live in a landfill--or "a dump," as we called it when I was a kid--there should be some compensation.

I knew a man who lived at the dump in Richfield. But, that's a story for another day. I knew a woman who combed the dump for treasures--she was my mother--but that's a story for another day. And there will be more stories about Mrs. Bird. Stay tuned.

Sunday, June 6, 2010


I had a birthday present for one of the grandkids and so they came to get it. Instead of wrapping it I sent everyone on a treasure hunt. After that, they stayed and played. Here are some of the photos I took.

These old guns have gotten lots of use through the years. One of the darts has been on our neighbors roof for a year.

This mother of seven was just lucky to find two shoes for the two year old.
Playing Mother May I? I think this was "you may take five giant leaps."

This is the mother of seven of these kids.

I tried to get her catching some air and cut her poor little head off. Sorry Willow.

I love to photograph this kid. Look at those perfect freckles.

If you are ever w/out clothes, rhubarb leaves can substitute.
The baby of the family is learning how to load the gun.

One driver and one rear-engine, the engine helped keep things moving fast with great leg action. A time or two the engine fell off. You just cannot trust these modern vehicles.

Getting ready for a catch.

The man I love. This is the great rhubarb bed.Sleeping sisters.Waking up. Every single get-together has rhubarb eating. First you peel it and salt it.

And then you eat it. Yum! This Bailey boy can out eat everyone when it comes to rhubarb.Eating rhubarb is hard work and requires lots of resting.
It was a great day with 10 of the grandkids here. How I love them.