• Friday, November 20th, 2009

Just thinking about my sweet Mom–Goldie Adelade Heath Newman. She would have been 92 years old on the 16th of this month (Nov 2009) if she were still living. Hope you had a Happy Birthday, Mom. (You do read my blogs, don’t you Mom???)

• Saturday, September 19th, 2009

Wow! Life is such a precious, fragile miracle. Kelly invited her mother and me to be at the doctor’s office today when she and Curtis had the ultrasound. We learned right away that it’s a boy. The outdoor plumbing was quite evident. I am overjoyed. Everyone was all smiles. Katelyn wanted a baby sister, but she’ll enjoy being the big sister to a little brother…until she’s a teenager.

• Wednesday, September 16th, 2009

The score was tied and he knew he could win. A fast ball off the front wall was coming high and, without thinking, he swung high and hard. And that was the last swing he would do for a long time. Steve tore the tendon in his right shoulder and couldn’t raise his arm. And Jason had no mercy. Steve lost the game.

Steve was hoping he could just get a cortisone shot and all would be well. But when he went to see the orthopedic surgeon, he was told he had a classic rotator cuff tear. His surgery was August 20th. He will be in an arm sling for three months. After four weeks he begins passive therapy. That is where the therapist at The Orthopedic Specialty Hospital just stretches his tendon for about thirty minutes twice a week. Ouch! Not fun! After six weeks, he starts active therapy where he has to do the lifting and stretching. Still not fun! He’s at four weeks now and he can get around quite well and do most normal things as long as he doesn’t even try to lift his right arm, or lift anything more than ten pounds with his left arm. I’ve had the same surgery in both of my shoulders and can understand somewhat of the frustration and constant aching he has to go through. But he’s toughing it out quite well. Poor dear…

• Monday, August 24th, 2009

Steve and Carolyn Family minus Mike's family and NateElle, Makayla, Eleanor, MichelleeSteve and Carolyn’s family came to town for a reunion the end of July. They rented a LARGE monster home in Heber and enjoyed a few days together with nearly all of their children and grandchildren. They had twenty-five people there–13 adults and 12 children. Mike and Kristi and their new son Emmet weren’t able to come. And Nathan was doing a major concert and also couldn’t come.

Steve and I were invited to come up for an evening to have dinner and visit. It was wonderful to see the family again. We had a wonderful time–all too short, though. On Saturday afternoon, after the reunion was over and most of the families had gone home, Steve and Aaron, Kimberlee and Eleanor came to our house to stay Saturday and Sunday night. Carolyn stayed at Dan and Jeni’s. After Church on Sunday, they all drove up to Hill AFB to visit Dan’s family. Later they ALL came back for dinner at our house that evening. We got to enjoy the family again–Steve and Carolyn, Dan and Jeni and girls, Aaron and Kimberlee and Eleanor, and Curt and Matt’s families came as well. A full house and a wonderful visit late into the evening. We had traditional taco salad and strawberry shortcake. Stever and Lacey stopped in, also. We sat out in the yard and talked and the kids played. We got out our little yard cooker and made s’mores. It was such a sweet time to be with the family I love.

• Wednesday, July 29th, 2009

Boy was it HOT! I went to the zoo with Lisa, Vernon, Gayle and families. Most of the children hadn’t been to a zoo before (that they could remember) and were so excited to see the animals. And I was happy to be with my family that I don’t get to see nearly enough.

The zoo was giving a price cut if you brought a coupon or a can of Dr. Pepper. So we took three cans of Dr. Pepper and, since nobody in our group drinks it, we gave them to the ticket girl–still full. She was happy. We got our tickets and headed first for the train ride. I could barely get my legs into the grain. It was definitely made for shorter people. The engineer described some of the animals as we rode past. But the speaker system wasn’t very good and I could hardly understand a thing she said. Then we started the hike through the different areas of the zoo, starting with the monkeys.

The monkeys used to always be my favorite at the zoo. They used to have lots of monkeys playing in their monkey cages but it’s not that way now. There are a few monkeys and sometimes they swing around but it’s not as good as it used to be many years ago.

We got to the zoo about 1:00, just about the time the sun really begins to get hot. So we took every opportunity to walk in the shade or stand under the misters or go in the buildings to see the displays. It was fun watching the children get excited about the different animals and birds–penguins, aligators, snakes, elephants, bears, zebras, and even bison. But the heat was almost unbearable. We saw some people walking around with umbrellas and I wished I had brought mine. We enjoyed the zoo, but were glad to finally get back to the air conditioned cars to come home.

• Monday, July 20th, 2009

We thought we were going camping on the south shore of Bear Lake where we could wake up in the morning and walk out to the water. But what really happened was that the lake decided to shrink. So we camped in a campground with very few trees and lots of weeds where we could see the lake about a hundred yards away. But between us and the water was tall, thick grass. There was no beach. The grass went right into the water. To get to a real beach, we had to pack all our lake stuff into the back of a truck (and we had a lot!) and drive nearly a mile to the day-use area to enjoy the sandy beach on the south shore of Bear Lake.

Even though it wasn’t exactly what I was expecting, we still had two wonderful days on the beach with our family–Curtis, Kelly and Katelyn, and Matthew, Natalie, Aubrey and Mackenzie. When we first arrived, we set up our camps and put sandwiches and goodies in the cooler and drove down to the lake. We had a really great time that afternoon and then headed back to camp. We had tacos for dinner that night, and root beer floats, too. Then we enjoyed a great campfire and had s’mores. The stars were out in all their glory. It was a beautiful night. The next morning, Matthew and Natalie made breakfast of eggs, two kinds of bacon, and pancakes. Life is good.

Then we all packed up and drove down to the beach, again. We unloaded all our beach stuff and enjoyed the day. The water was warm enough to really enjoy. The kids played with all the paraphernalia we took and had lots of fun. The weather was hot days and cool nights–perfect. And although there had been some scary reports of clouds of mosquitoes, we only saw one or two mosquitoes and got no bites at all. (whew!)

The water was shallow out a long way from the shore, and it was fun to watch the kids play in the water. Katelyn (3-1/2 yrs old) was out on her little float tube padding and kicking and really enjoying the water most of the time. Aubrey (3-1/2 yrs old) had been a little timid about the water, but it didn’t take long before she was letting her mom walk her out a little further to bounce over the waves. By the end of the day she was riding on the float toys and enjoying the water with Katelyn. Mackenzie (2 yrs old) seemed to have no fear at all. She would just walk right into the water and keep on going. When the kids started to show signs of being cold, I’d take them back to shore and wrap them up tightly in a big, warm beach towel. They liked that.

Matthew and Natalie packed up that evening and headed for home. Curtis and Kelly, and Steve and I, stayed that night and left the next morning after breakfast. More great memories…

• Sunday, July 19th, 2009

Last week we went camping at the Soapstone campground. It’s on the Mirror Lake highway about 20 miles east of Park City in the Wasatch National Forrest. Steve and I took our little motorhome. Matthew and Natalie and their girls camped in their tent. And Curtis and Kelly and Katelyn brought their tent trailer. Luckily, we had no bugs to speak of. The weather was perfect.

We had Dutch oven dinner one night–turned out really good. Even had hot rolls and green salad. Curtis cooked a yummy bacon and egg breakfast outside on the Coleman stove one morning. And we roasted s’mores in the campfire, went for walks to the river, and just enjoyed the beautiful world. Curtis and Steve tried a little fishing at the river. We stayed two nights and came home Saturday. Good times…

• Monday, July 06th, 2009

What a fun day! Steve and I made Belgian waffles and took them to Murray Park, where Curtis and Kelly had saved a good spot for the whole family to set out the lawn chairs and blankets and watch the parade. We all ate breakfast and enjoyed a beautiful morning together with the kids and grandchildren. Then that evening we went back to the park for the fireworks. I made a birthday cake so we could blow out the candle and sing Happy Birthday to America. There were many people out on the open lawn near the ball field to enjoy the fireworks.

Not too far from us was a group of people playing cards and having a good time. One of the young men was smoking and the smoke was drifting our way. It is not legal to smoke at any public park in Utah. Steve and I were annoyed by the smoke, but didn’t want to interfer with their group activity. Besides, the guy and several others in their group were very tatooed and the girls weren’t wearing much and I didn’t feel I’d be a welcomed guest in their group.

But as I was playing with Aubrey and wishing there wasn’t smoke blowing my way, I noticed myself getting up and walking over to the young man who was smoking. It was almost like an out-of-body experience. I don’t remember planning to do it. I didn’t have any idea what I was going to say to him. But as I came up to him, he quickly put his hand of cards down by his side. I just heard myself tell him that he might not be aware that smoking was not legal in the park, and that there were a few people in our group who were very sensitive to cigarette smoke. He said, “Ok, thanks.” Well, that was nice enough. I didn’t ask him to quit or anything. I apologized for the interruption and left. As I was walking back to our family I thought–good grief! what have I done?! They’ll probably get a good laugh at me. But he wasn’t smoking the rest of the evening.

It was a beautiful evening and the fireworks were great. Good memories…

• Thursday, July 02nd, 2009

I always like going to Costco. A few years back we nicknamed it the ‘hundred dollar store’. We didn’t get out of there very often for less–and when we did, we celebrated. I like to people-watch at Costco. Moms with multiple children are fun to watch. They do an amazing job of juggling the kids, maneuvering the cart, and getting the shopping done. It’s fun to watch someone in the photo department try to use the photo CD reader for the first time. And it’s also fun to watch those men without their wives. When they get ready to pick out an item, they pull out the cell phone and call the wife to describe the items in detail to see which one she wants. There is a lot of good entertainment at Costco.

I had a particularly entertaining day last week when I went in to get just one item–a bag of Miracle Grow Fertilizer. Another lady, by herself and on her cell phone, was pushing her cart behind me and when I turned on the garden isle, she was close behind. But when I stopped at the Miracle Grow, she was still talking on the phone. She came around the corner a little too fast, and as she saw me putting the large bag in my cart she tried to turn her cart with her one free hand to go around me and she turned too far. Her cart hit a displayof large, 3-foot high decorative garden pots that were stacked two high. The bottom one went over and started a chain reaction with the others around it. And the one on top of it crashed to the floor–a very loud crashing noise. It all happened in a just few seconds. She was really frazzled. She threw the phone in her bag and tried to grab as many pots as she could. I tried to help steady the ones that hadn’t gone over yet. The employees came running. It was so funny. Soooo funny! I can’t wait to go back again.