Thursday, May 30, 2013

Happy Birthday to Steve

Steve was still a little twerp when I left home and could no longer tell him to keep quiet and not disturb me.  So I've had a lifetime to get acquainted with him.  He and Ann were my prime photo models when they were little since they were compliant and did everything I asked them to do.  As a result, there are more photos of them than of any other family member. Top photo, the John Wayne era in Jackson.  Middle photo, how to survey for a new milk barn.  Bottom photo self explanatory.  When Steve was born we were hustled off to Cindy's to kill time.  I remember Dr. Coulston, that urbane, gentlemanly, kindly doctor who delivered you commenting on Mother's wonderful homemade bread.  Then our house got noisier since Ann wasn't making a lot of racket by then.  We all remain in awe of your artistic and creative skills, of which I have none.  Dad would especially be proud of your accomplishments, as are we all.  Now if you would just take up quilt making to compete with your sisters.  We all hope you have a memorable and happy birthday.  We just wish we could see you more often.  From your former kindly roommate.


Tuesday, May 28, 2013


Happy Birthday to Elizabeth May 28 2013

Happy Birthday to Elizabeth (Liz), my childhood pal, my beet hoeing partner, and my lifelong friend.  The memories of your handle on the pitchfork, to which you were not entitled, Mrs. Tumsey, nose-in-the-book syndrome (which got you out of an awful lot of work), the baby buggy that I stole from you to haul the white cat around in--all of these come to mind today.  Since Louise taught me how to read, I figured it would be no big deal to teach you how.  But I just wasn't the teacher Louise was.  You never could understand what "ditto, dummy, ditto" meant and so I gave up.  Somehow you made up for my lack of tutorial ability as you read your way through the Powell library.  I keep trying to insult you and make you angry just to stir things up but all you do is cheerfully reply, "I know it."  We know you have been through the depths of trials this past year and we are all so thankful for your recovery and cheerful disposition.  We all value your advice, wisdom, guidance, and lovely disposition.  You are so important to all of us as each of us continues to confront challenges.  But the most important thing is, we all stick together.  There is no animosity.  Only love.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Memorial Day 2013

Memorial Day 2013.  I always remember that when we were still home, Mother cut a bouquet of lilacs and iris, if either were blooming and took them to the cemetery.  I don't ever remember going with them.  One of the difficulties for us in honoring our parents on Memorial Day is that we all live so far away and some of us aren't quite as mobile as we used to be.  So, much as we would like to go to the cemetery and have a moment of solitude and thankfulness for their lives, the best we can do is to offer these photos so we can all remember.  

We also honor all who have served and those who have lost their lives in the service of our country on this Memorial Day.  We give special thanks to those in our extended families who have served or who are now serving in the military.  We all welcome Ross back to civilian life, we thank Cliff (Kim's husband) for his various tours in Afghanistan and Iraq, and we pray for Aaron's (Kim and Cliff's son) safety (Afghanistan) while he is gone.  Please add others in your comments I have omitted.

And so we pause these brief moments and look to the distant clouds and the tiny sliver of Heart Mountain in the distance and we remember the good life and the good years we had in Penrose with our parents.  We forever remain grateful to them for learning how to work, how to survive, and how to persevere just by following their example.  We were, and are, truly blessed.

We remember the Wasdens: Cindy, Minnie (Mother) Grandpa Wasden, Grandma Wasden, Orvil, and Elna (who became our stepmother in Dad's last years).

To Mom and Dad, we say thank you once again for your hard work, exemplary lives, and for the love that still binds those of us who are left together.  We may not all have too long left in mortality, but not a day goes by that I don't think of home, of Dad, of Mom, of my Wasden grandparents.  We honor all of you on this Memorial Day of 2013.  

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Lilac Time!

Ahh - it's that time of year - Memorial Day, Steve's birthday and my birthday.  Time for the lilacs over at Emmy's to be in full bloom, so we can go cut big bunches, and fill the two-quart bottles with water and add the fragrant bouquets.  The whole house would smell wonderful.  There was a feeling that summer was coming, and that we would have beautiful days with blue skies, fluffy clouds, and green fields.  As you can see, Preston isn't too much different than Penrose in the time that flowers bloom.  These came from our friend's yard - their bushes must be ten feet tall, and they are loaded with lilacs.  I filled vases, and before placing them around the house, put some on the patio table to take a picture or two, and where the dancing frogs who reside on the table can lift their arms in jubilation that spring is finally here and there are lilacs to bloom.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Ruminations from Riverton

We have successfully migrated, thanks to our two helpful sons.  There are few visible changes here.  The Arctic Circle is still where it used to be.  The two gas stations on the corner keep changing their prices to match the other one.  Yesterday they both had prices down to $3.17 or so, today, back up to $3.39.  Hurray for the free-enterprise system.  A new McDonald's has sprouted at the Costco turnoff, along with a buffalo wing outfit.  Who knew buffalos had wings? The guy who draws smiley faces on the receipts at the Costco checkout line was back in business.  The toilet paper (Costco no.#1 selling item) managed to be relocated on the opposite side of the store from the Kleenex.  I walked 20 miles before I got both of them.  I spent $5 bucks on a rotisserie chicken which saved 2 hours of cleaning the set-it-or-forget it piece of junk reposing in the store room.  This chicken does not lay eggs.  The new garage door opener installed a couple of years for 450 (I have to interrupt this to say that Judy just called to explain how wonderful the piece I mailed on how wonderful fabric is was, etc.) bucks does not work.  Two toilet flappers need replaced.  The garage is full of leaves.  I was out of pancake flour so could not make Velna a mother's day breakfast.  She had a piece of toaster strudel instead.

I have checked the Ambsbaugh Gardens blog every day two or three times to see if the moth myth stuff has finally been replaced.  So far there is no indication that the proprietress of this blog has any intention of diverting our attention from the moth myth.

I went to the ear nose and throat folks this morning convinced that my hearing was doomed.  Turns out my hearing aids were damaged when I wore them in the shower a few weeks ago.  Velna hopes I will shut up now.  For the moment I am in a better humor until I find the next thing to worry about.  We are happy Steve has a new dog.  I know you will all be anxious for me to bring you up to date as soon as possible.  Have a nice day.

New Family Member

Meet Oliver, He's our new rescue Airedale that's supposed to be coming to our house if all goes well in about a week or so.  Some may think that we are nuts but we look at it as therapy.
(does not lay eggs)

Friday, May 10, 2013

Fun Stuff In The Mail

About the first of the week I received a large brown envelope from Dwight.  I was somewhat apprehensive as I pondered what could be inside.  It wasn't my birthday and I hadn't asked him for any photos, but I did know their move north from St. George was either to take place soon or had already taken place, so was he just cleaning out his office and getting rid of stuff or what?

To my surprise, when I opened the envelope, therein was a magazine titled Mother Earth News Wiser Living Series.  Beneath that title is the subtitle(I guess that is what you call it) "Guide to Growing Your Own Food" with 5 Keys to a Weed-Free Garden as a featured article.  I was so excited because this just seemed like such a thoughtful thing to do.  I carefully read the different articles and did learn some new stuff to add to the old stuff I had forgotten about.

Now, here comes the kicker.  I don't mean to attribute anything untowards (that is a Downton Abbey word, I am sure) to Mother Earth News, but I think they have a centerfold photo in this magazine.  When I hit page 54-55 there it was.  The title of that article is "Backyard Chickens For The Best Eggs Ever".   The photo is of a very contented looking mother hen with baby chicks running around her.  (I would have copied it and posted it here, but was concerned about copyright issues and I didn't want to wait to receive a written ok to use their photo.)  In my mind it suddenly became more obvious why Dwight sent this very informative magazine to me.  The first sentence in this article written by Cheryl Long states:  "The minute you crack open a homegrown egg from a hen that's been able to eat grass, seeds and bugs,you'll never settle for pale, tasteless factory-farm eggs again."  She is so right.

So, I am now thinking, in spite of Dwight's class in college about the economics of raising a few healthy, happy chickens, there is a longing on his part to come down and sit on the back porch and listen to "chicken talk" and enjoy the world of real eggs.  We must get together sometime soon!

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Wedding Day

While I am waiting for the photos that were taken of the Tanner group at Kelsey's wedding, I thought I would share a few from the day.  It was a beautiful day in Manti.  After the ceremony, one of the temple workers gave us a brief tour of the incredible stairway.  All I could think of was the story of Grandma Wasden polishing the railing a gazillion years ago.
                                                      Wedding Day, April 26, 2013
Kelsey is our first grandchild to get married.  We are thankful for her example to the 21 others who are to come along a similar path, in their own time.  Kelsey has been the pied piper of all of our grandchildren.

Trying to get this "herd of kids" to cooperate wasn't going to be easy.  This is as good as it got!  I think there are about 10 grandchildren standing on the curb.
This is a little better controlled group.  From left to right, Brooks and Savannah (Kristen), Shea and Shane (Greg), Jack and Jonah (Nathan).

This is taken just outside the front door to the Temple. I think Kelsey and Braden were really happy to finally get to this point.
This is taken on the west side of the Temple.  Happy Day!
This is taken in front of the really tall west doors of the Manti Temple.  Seriously?  How many photos are you guys going to take?

Nathan drove down to Manti for the wedding and then Bridget brought Gwen to Orem for the evening craziness.  The smiles on their faces are great indicators as to how things are going these days.

When other photos become available I will share.