Tuesday, September 30, 2008

What is Wrong With This Picture

Ahhh...the last day of September. Kayty said that I could put up the Fall/Halloween decorations on October 1st. Tomorrow...what fun. So, I decided to climb up in the attic and get the boxes of stuff down...five large orange and black totes...full of black cats and leaves in my favorite colors... But wait, what is this dripping down my forehead?...Sweat...or rather perspiration. What from? Fall means cool weather, shorter days...but, I am in Arizona...was born here...lived here all but a few weeks of my 48 years...so why am I surprised with a molten hot attic? It was 101 degrees outside today, but, tomorrow, October 1st, it's gonna be Autumn!!! (Don't worry, Dee...I promise not to touch the thermostat, but I may jump in the pool after I put out the pumpkins!)

Monday, September 29, 2008

I Just LOVE Christmas!!

This is a post from someone who drives her kids absolutely nuts...because I just love Christmas! I remember the decorations my mom put up every year...they were few and simple...but they were such treasures. And, even way back when I was a kid, we had two...yes two...Christmas Trees: one that we kids could decorate, and one that the kids could help on, and then Mom and Dad would "repair" after we went to bed. When I married Dee and first entered my mother in law's house, I had never before seen so many wonderful, beautiful decorations! Thus began my love for decorating our home. We never had a tree that had flimsy and few ornaments...I painted and made things every year, so our tree would look wonderful. We used to chop down our own tree every year, and I never could find one big enough for all my ornaments. (Alas, the bark beetle took care of the tree chopping tradition...too many "golden" trees, as Mike-my son in law called them.) I now select special ones for our living room tree, I have a red, white and blue tree in the family room (born in the 4th of July, you know!), a hunting tree for all of Dee's hunting and fishing ornaments....and I have boxes left over in the attic just in case a need arises! I am presently working on my latest addition to our collection...I have 125 ornaments under construction...Mom and my theme this year is nutcracker/tin soldier/drummer boy (mine are drummer boys). I have almost 75 done...lots to do, but I usually have them all done by Halloween. Yes, I love my trees, my ornaments, my department 56 North Pole Holiday Village (I call it a holiday village or Kate won't let me put it on the piano till Winter begins...and that is much too late!!), but one of my favorite things is my collection of Nativity Scenes. It began a few years ago when there was a display going on at church and I didn't even have one to display. I bought one the day after Christmas at Target...a pure white one. That began a fun quest. I painted one with childlike characters, one that has children dressing up for their performance - some in wheel chairs...I like that one a lot. I have been given quite a few, as well. One, my sister in law cut from plain pine and just varnished the figures...just wonderful. My mother in law is a champ and finding things. The most special ones, though, are the ones Dee has purchased for me on trips. He is the best shopper. He takes such care when he looks for a gift for me... I know he has brought the kids with him at one time or another as he looked for jewelry for me, and they come home complaining to high heaven about how long he takes...but it is so very special to me because he shows just how much he cares when he takes these painstaking efforts to find the perfect gift. He bought me a wonderful "nacimiento" in Mexico when he was travelling to Queretero there a few years ago. I figured that India would be the last place he would find something like that, so I dared not hope...but that wonderful guy...he sure did find one... and it is a treasure!

Now, the picture just doesn't capture the true beauty...there is one king that is grey...literally all over his face...(looks like he had some of that Indian water that they don't bottle!) There is an older couple. And the sheep are this lovely shade of lavender! It is so precious. I just love it. Can you believe that sweet husband of mine searching Bangalore, India to find this for me!! And then his driver, Raj, taking measurements of his computer bag, getting a box, taking the pieces, and individually wrapping them in newspaper and string so that they would survive the long trip home!!Now, being the Christmas freak that I am, as you can see, I had to display it already...and I welcomed it to our home by playing...mind you, as loud as those 6 foot tall speakers would play... Mannheim Steamroller "Hallelujah!", the first song I put on for my months of Christmas music. Now, Saturday, at a fantastic yard sale, I got another one...

and welcomed it in the same way, though some of my sons, who had enjoyed the fajitas I had made for them to eat earlier, were filled with complaints about Christmas music and commercialism...bah humbug! This aint no commercialism...I just love Christmas!!!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Friday Was "Son"day

Yesterday was truly an amazing "mom" day for me. First, I "get" to wake up, prod, poke, nag, and otherwise abuse Nathan while he readies for school and his football game in Williams (alas, they lost...). Later, as my visiting teachers were talking with me, they noticed Doran in the back yard (if you have not already determined, Dee is my sweet hubby - Doran Rice, Jr., and Doran is my sweet 24 year old son - Doran Rice, III). He didn't want to interrupt my visit, and he was here to work on Dee's project vehicle. Later still, I walked into the garage to check on Doran, and there was Ethan - my 25 year old son. He came to pick up mail and visit. As soon as he left, the phone rang, and there was Morgan, my 22 year old son, calling just to visit with me from Cedar City. He's doing great and now has a contact number so I don't have to get on his scary MySpace page anymore just to see if he is alive...thank goodness!! So, my Friday turned into a very, very wonderful day visiting with each of my sweet sons... Heavenly Father sends so many blessings, you just have to recognize them. (Now, when Nathan got back from Williams, it was after midnight, hence, Saturday...and his visiting skills were rather dampered due to the game loss...but nothing is so bad that a few Jack Tacos cannot fix it!!)

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Picture Tag

Thanks for the tag, Nicole. I went to the 4th folder, 4th picture in my picture file. This is a picture of Kayty at the end of last year. Her musical theater class had taken the musical episode of "Scrubs" and performed it for anyone who wanted to come. I had never watched the show on television, but I sure enjoyed the performance! The only thing bad that I remember was that I was supposed to be recording it on Kayty's camera and the memory stick was full before the performance was over and she was not happy with me.

This tag was fun...I tag anyone else that would like to do this...

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Proof: I Need Lessons!

This is what you get when

1. Mom is using her telephoto lens for the second time.

2. Son's team is winning the game, so the younger players get put into the game.

3. Mom gets too excited when son gets to play in more than one play.

In case you are interested, Nathan is the blurr with the number 72 on!

India Pics

Here are some pictures from India. Dee took quite a few. He is so good about trying to get pics of the local life, though is wasn't easy to get people to agree to being photographed.

Here he is eating a frankfurter in the Frankfurt, Germany Airport (a very expensive one!!)

Riding in the motorized ricshaw. Most people travel by motorcycle...in fact, these small motorcycles hold an entire family (Dad, Mom, and one or two children - and they are not big motorcycles!)

His favorite part of the trip was attending church on the two Sundays at the Bangalore Second Branch. The people were so thankful for the Gospel in their lives. It really makes you think when they are so thankful, yet their "homes" often leak and they don't have enough to eat. We are so very blessed, and do not even realize it!

Monday, September 22, 2008

So Very Thankful

I love my blog...it is my way to share what I have inside with myself, with my sweet family, and my dear friends. I have been through what was, for me, the greatest trial of my life...my sweetheart being so far away and for fifteen whole days...To some, this is nothing, but to me, this was an eternity. I thought it would be difficult, but not as difficult as it turned out to be. The experience now qualifies as my greatest time of adversity in my life. Yes, even raising teenagers and living with their choices pales in comparison to what I personally, privately endured while being away from him. But isn't it the most amazing thing...Heavenly Father uses these times of adversity to teach us, to better us, to bring us higher. I never, ever will doubt that my Savior carried me through these times.Remember that old story about the footprints in the sand? Well, I have no doubt that there were only one set of footprints in the sand for the time he was away. I am so thankful for a loving Savior who carried me when I felt lost and alone. I am also grateful for the many, many answers to my prayers throughout Dee's absence...we were all safe...only a few problems the last day he was away, and now he brought a bug home with him and we are working on his recovery, but at least he is here for me to help him get better. Through my sadness came, also, answers to long prayed prayers. I had lost direction in my life and had been seeking the way to go now. I received those answers, and now have a direction to work on, a goal in mind, and I just have to pursue the things that I felt good about before. I wanted to do photography...but I am just not that good at it yet, and I couldn't afford a class now...Boom! another answer to prayer in Jannicke and a photography club at Church! I knew we wanted to serve a mission someday...and the answer came to me that I am to put money I earn toward a mission that we will serve...and, get this, I feel that we will serve in India! (for those who were at Mimi's Cafe with me a couple of weeks ago when I said I would NEVER set foot in India EVER...I guess I am going to eat some words along with that salad!) Dee felt the same way, a few days after I did, and when he shared it with me, it was as if the flood gates had opened up. I shared my feelings with him, and it was as if the miles between us were nothing. Now, my task ahead is to prepare for a mission. Our finances are tight, with Dee as our only income, and he works his fingers to the bone for us, so I now have a task...to spend the next few years ahead working and saving for our goal, and preparing for this mission so I can share the Gospel with the wonderful people of India, as well as other places we may get to go. I know I have rambled quite a bit, but this was just testimony to me of how the Lord blesses us so much, but it is when we are at our lowest, and when we are the most humble, that we are the most teachable. He hears and answers our prayers, we just have to listen.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Counting Down

For those of you who are used to your husband traveling long distances for extended periods, and for those of you who think it is nutty that a grown 48 year old woman would act like a sophomore in high school, this is a warning: read no further...I repeat, read no further. For those of you who are just madly in love with your husband and cannot stand to be apart from him: Doran's plane will land in 9 hours and 40 minutes... (He lands in Chicago in 1 hour and 38 minutes, so I can hear his voice on my cell phone with no time limits!) HOORAY!!!!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Football Friday Night

I loved going to football games when I was in high school. Of course, I didn't just attend...I was in the marching band (okay, get it out of your system...I am a band geek and I love it...still am in a marching band every Fiesta Bowl Parade) Anyway, we had these heavy uniforms: green dress pants and suit jackets, and a vinyl overlay, green hat and red plume (Go, Alhambra Lions!) The beginning of the season was torture...heavy uniforms and Phoenix heat, but as the evenings cooled off, that uniform made it tolerable. I loved playing music, cheering with the cheerleaders, and just about everything. I didn't miss a home game for three years.

Now, step forward to 2008. I now have a varsity football player, and I got to go watch his team last night. Now, he is new to the team, so he didn't get a chance to play since the game was very close...went into overtime, but they lost...but it was so fun watching this schools marching band, though rather small, but full of big sound and heart, cheering with the cheerleaders. The evening wasn't even very bad...nice and cool, for Phoenix. Good company: my son, Doran, and his wife, Danyel took me. Only one thing would have made it better...my sweetheart there beside me.

Next Friday will be almost perfect...Dee will be back, it's homecoming, and our family will cheer for North Pointe Falcons!! Another football Friday night!

Monday, September 8, 2008

I Got to Hear His Voice!

I know, to others this may sound very silly, especially coming from a grown woman, mother of six, grammy of 2, but my heart is just flying, because, this morning, I received a phone call from India, with the sweetest voice on the line...one I had not heard for four days...my sweetheart, Dee. After my tears stopped (I just couldn't believe that hearing him would make me react like that) I got to talk to him. I was so much easier than emailing, though I know that probably I won't be able to get a phone call until he leaves for home. But that doesn't matter, because I got to talk to him!! Even after twenty eight years, four months, and whatever else my counter says, his voice still sends me to cloud nine!!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Dee's India Adventure part 1

We got our first pictures (other than on the cell phone) of Dee's India trip. He flew for two days and arrived at midnight there. After a few hours of sleep, he ate "something that tasted very good, though I don't know what it was" and set out to see the sites. I am not sure all of the things that he saw...he put 87 pictures on snapfish for today alone. (Hopefully, the trend of many pics will not continue...it will take an album in itself to document this trip) He is now at dinner and will make a very quick call "tonight" for him, this morning for me.
(sorry for the small picture. It is the best I can do since they are not on my computer yet.)

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

It Is Finished!

Wow...what a book...what a series! I finished reading "Breaking Dawn" yesterday. I have never read a series of books that captivated me more. When I finished the first, and then the second, and then the third...well, I just don't know how all of you patiently waited for publishing! (I almost assaulted the Mahrts when I needed to read the book that Kayty had loaned them.) Now, back to real life...