Monday, March 31, 2008

Nathan Receives Scout Award

Nathan is a very competitive person, and Ethan is the one in his sights to beat! He worked his tail off to complete his eagle board before Ethan did, and beat him by just a few days. Now, he wants to earn more Eagle palms than Ethan did. He was awarded his third palm, the silver palm, last night. They asked him a few questions about favorite badges, etc., but Mr. Talkative said very little! (Can you believe it...Nathan with no comments!!) Oh, well, we are certainly well pleased. He has only one more merit badge and some time left to get number 4 palm. How many did Ethan receive? No one really knows!!!

Off to NAU for Required Courses

Well, Kate called, and no auditions till November, so she goes up there to get her basics in. She seemed all right on the phone, and I told her that the Lord is in control, and to hang in there. We just never really know where HE is going to take us, and what we, at first, think is a bad thing turns out to be really quite a good thing!!(I bet the Music Dept. heard about her feelings toward Louie!!!:)

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Louie the Lumberjack

Yesterday, we went up to Northern Arizona University for a tour. Kate is going to attend there this Fall. What a beautiful school! The thing I was most impressed with is all that the school provides to make sure the student succeeds! It sure is different from when I started college (that sentence sure makes me sound ancient, doesn't it!) Our only shock came when we found out that Kate cannot take any classes toward her desired degree in vocal education until she auditions and is accepeted into the School of Music. She is now madly getting recommendation pages filled out for me to next day air them up to Flagstaff and trying desperately to get an audition (the vocal one are all over), and then trying to get one of only a few places in the program. (Needless to say, there will be much prayer this week!)

Other than our shock, my only sad moment was when Kate refused to get a picture with Louie the Lumberjack! Can you believe it!!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Our Easter

Our Easter this year was fun, though we sure missed having ALL of our family with us. Allison and Mike, just because you are geographically far away, you are never far from our hearts!! And Adam and Gracie...we just miss you super duper looper much!

Well, we started by coloring our eggs on Saturday. Many thanks to Danyel for doing the jobs that I hate to do...she stood there and monitored the eggs, got them into cold water, and then individually dried them off and packaged them...What a gem. (To top it all off, the sweet girl loves to roll out pizza dough, and she is fantastic at it!! So far, my sons have made VERY, VERY GOOD choices when it comes to the wonderful women they have married!!!) Saturday, all came in the afternoon to celebrate Doran's 24th birthday and then we colored eggs. It took awhile, but the eggs came out beautiful! Dee used colored crayons to draw various scenes on his eggs. But my favorite was the one that had "Dee loves(a heart) Suz"- sure made it hard to eat that one.

We had an uneventful Easter more baskets and candy. Dad had early meetings, and Kate and I had choir practice early. We had a wonderful Sacrament Meeting. Joy and Randy Black spoke on the atonement. What a spiritual feast to hear Randy. I looked at Joy up in front, after enduring Randy's chemotherapy, radiation, and recent surgery where Randy almost died due to a blood clot in his lung. I, myself, sometimes think about why I am having to endure a particular trial...but nothing like what she is facing. They are in our prayers always. After that wonderful meeting, it was off to Nursery, where the other workers were either sick or away. Again, Doran and Danyel to the rescue! One little one, Gabby, was quite smitten with my son...she even called him "Daddy"!

After church, we came home, peeled the eggs, and Dad made his traditional Sunday deviled eggs. Yum! Then, it was off to Grandma's for Easter Dinner and Egg Hunting. In attendance were most of the family, except for Marissa and her husband and kids, and Allison, Mike, Adam and Grace. It was fun to see the new babies: Shelley had son Barrett a few weeks ago and Kendall and Stephanie were there with Marin, 10 weeks old. That sweet little girl had a hard the hospital at only a few weeks of age after coming down with RSV, but she looks wonderful now. Grandma hid over 300 eggs, but with 37 people searching, it was hard to get too many. (I broke a personal record...I found three...and one I found after my husband missed it- something that just never happens!!It only took 28 years to achieve this!!)All sat around the back yard and talked for awhile. It is hard for Marina and Mike to get off work, so this was a rare cherished pleasure!

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Papa Always Keeps His Word

When I got the news that Kelli Wilkins was getting married on March 21st, I was so happy!...Yes, it was great that Kelli was getting married, but the best part was that I would get those sweet grandbabies of mine down here to Phoenix!! The first thing I asked my sweet, gifted, talented husband was if he could change the work schedule of our backyard project and move the swingset up in the queue. He did...and the goal for completion was 3-21-08. Then, Kelli had scheduling conflicts and moved the wedding to April 18th. I was sad, but again, that sweet husband kept on. He built a copy of a Rainbow Swingset, and, with much help from Nathan, and brute strength from Doran, Ethan, and a few neighbors, the swingset was operating on March 21st, plus a climbing deck, 2 rock walls, a turbo tube slide (Home Depot beaurocracy rivals that of Washington D.C.), and the best bouncy duckie ( are amazing with a paint sprayer!!) And so, the initial viewing, with more completion yet to come. Adam and Grace, Papa loves you soooo much...and here is how he shows it!!!

Friday, March 14, 2008

Nothing is Ever Easy!

Wouldn't you know matter what project we start, the moment we begin, it becomes a challenge. We have been planning this playground for over a year. We had the components at Lowe's just ready to pick up. Now, when we get going, they run out of rock wall rocks. No problem...I went to the website and got a list of all the dealers in the Phoenix area...problem is, they just stopped dealing the stuff. So, I need 8 packages of climbing rocks, some swing components, and possibly a slide (though that is turning into a fiasco in and of itself). Anyway, I had to put a board on the top over the tire swing, so I climbed the rock wall...and I had Kate take a picture to show Adam, because I am NEVER going to climb that thing again!! It is all very safe and sturdy...but I am just not a "height" person. So, Adam, take one look at Grammy after she climbed the rock wall, because she probably won't ever do that again!!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

For Adam and Gracie, and the future Rice Grandkids!

Here it is...the second installment of the Rice Playground. The first was the sandbox, and here we have the almost complete rock climbing wall (Lowe's ran out of rocks) and tire swing holder (we need to get vinyl coated chains and, of course, a tire. Hope you like it, Adam!

Our Italian Soloist

For Kate's advanced voice class, she had to memorize a song in a foreign language and then perform at a recital. She forgot her safety pins, so her formal dress lacked its coverup, but I said it was, essentially, a costume for a performance, so it was okay. She was soooo worried, because at her dress rehearsal, she mixed up the verses, but that didn't happen yesterday. Way to go, Kaity!!

Kaity in Washington

There are too many wonderful things to write about Kate's trip. She saw such wonderful things and met the nicest people. She has made very dear friends that, hopefully, she won't lose touch with. She was able to hear a seminar by the first female space shuttle commander. She was able to meet Congressman John Shadegg. She saw the Smithsonian and was able to eat dinner there. She has friends from all over the world. We are so thankful to Honeywell for this wonderful opportunity.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Kaity and Nathan Keep Us Busy!

We have been so busy with so many things around the house. Dee and I are working on a playground for our grandkids...though the only two we have now live in Vegas. I guess we are trying to lure them here, as well as prove to be entertaining babysitters to any future grandkids here (hint, hint!)

Nathan is trying his hand at raising chickens again. He has tried on several occasions, only to have a crafty coyote jump our six foot block wall and eat them. He has built a pen that rivals Fort Knox in security! And he now has his chickens

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Miss Kaity Goes To Washington!

As a Honewell Presidential Scholar, our Kaity is spending the week in Washington, D.C. She has met many wonderful people from all over the world! Her roommates are from Chicago, Florida, and Minnesota, and she has a friend that has come from the Czech Republic. She said, on Monday, that she wished she was born in England so that she could have that beautiful accent! (Go figure, a kid wants to be born someplace to get a cool accent!!)Today, she toured the U.S. Capital building, The Supreme Court Building, and has an appointment with Senator Jon Kyl and Congressman John Shadegg as we speak. She also has an opportunity (if she answers her phone!) to meet with a representative of Senator John McCain! She is part of a caucus discussing global warming and has had speakers to listen to (she said yesterday's speakers were not the most exciting that she has ever heard!) She is looking forward to day! Hopefully, she won't have a stroke when she gets back...I cleaned, or rather, organized her room for her!(Watch for the mushroom cloud coming from our direction late Saturday afternoon!!)