Monday, September 28, 2009

I found a treasure today

My hard drive on my laptop is almost completely full. As in, I've deleted several unnecessary programs, I've decided I need to finish burning the rest of my pictures onto discs, so that I can start getting rid of those.
Since my mind was on pictures, I remembered that my uncle had given me a CD with pictures on it. I had asked him for it a while ago, for pictures of my grandparents when they were younger, and that sort of thing. I've had it for months. I've never even looked at it. Until today. Oh my friends, I've had GOLD this whole time and didn't even know it.

Most of these are from slides, so if they look backwards, that's because they are.

This is from when my grandma and her sister went touring around Europe together. In the 60's.

I don't think either one of them are in this one, but I still like it.

I don't think, if I remember correctly (in my defense, I was pregnant at the time, had a sick toddler and was with my very touristy mother who was driving me nuts) cars no longer drive under the Eiffel Tower. And the fact there is someone in that little thing trying to direct traffic?? Good luck. You're in Paris.

I love this picture. I love the patchwork of fields on the ground. The fantastic thing is that it is still like that. This same sort of view was what I first saw of France when I flew over for the first time.

My great aunt Sybil is on the left (the one that had that awesome silver dress I posted about earlier) and my grandma is on the right.

My grandma at the Berlin Wall.

The Brandenburg Gate in Berlin.

My cute grandpa when he was in the Navy during WWII.

And my favorite is this one: my parents. Somewhere, obviously happy. Do you see my dads pants? And his shirt?

I had NO IDEA what was on this CD. There is so much more!! I am so thrilled to have it! I'm going to print a few of these out.

My husband doesn't always understand why I want to have so many pictures of things. In fact, I got him a camera to take with him (which, of course, he has barely tried to use and hasn't sent any pictures yet). But these pictures are why I do it. So that my great grandchildren can see where we went, what we did. And what the world looked like then. What it looked like through our eyes.

I am off to make room on my hard drive for more pictures. This hard drive seems so small. Think Matt will let me get a new laptop???

Friday, September 25, 2009

Coping strategies

When your husband is deployed, there really aren't too many positive things going on. But, to keep myself sane, and to help my attitude, I HAVE to look at the positive. And here are a few of the things I've found to be positive:

~Extra pay! We get separation and combat pay while he's being gone, and the year that he is gone, we don't pay taxes.

~My water bill is going to be lower!! The man would sometimes take two showers a day. He would take one in the morning, and then if he exercised after he came home, he would pop in for another quick one.

~My electric and gas bills will be lower too.

~Less laundry!! I used to do laundry twice a week, and now I have taken it down to one.

~Less Gas! Since he isn't driving to post every day, and I have fewer places to go, we won't be hitting the local Shell station near as often.

~Less Groceries! Meals that would last us maybe one and a half times, or two times, now last MUCH longer. I need to start cooking less food.

~I don't have to share the TV. No more UFC fights, or movies that I can't watch because they affect me too much. (in his defense, when I would watch with him, he would rub my feet while I cross stitched, so even though people were beating each others brains out on TV, I was getting a foot massage.)

~My toilet will stay clean much longer.

~There are many couples that don't spend much time apart. Some cannot imagine what it would be like to be apart for a month, let alone a year. It's not that it's easy, but sometimes it's good to get away from each other to remember what it is you love about each other, realize how much they do, and to have time to make changes that need to be made and to really work on yourself. Being apart works for us. We've never been apart for this long, and I think we do much better with just a month apart. But this is what we signed up for, and we'll get through this.

You know, if you put husband deployed on the con side and had all these on the pro side, it still does not outweigh him being deployed. But you do what you have to, to get through it. And today, this is what I'm doing.

Anyone have any coping strategies that work for them? I could use a few ideas.:)

Thursday, September 24, 2009

I think I'm losing my mind

It all started the day Matt left, which was the same day that I was leaving. I forgot the directions to my family reunion. And my daughters special blanket, that goes with her on any trip.

It just goes downhill from there.

I've left our garage door open all night three times. There have been a few other minor things. But tonight was the worst. I left our sliding back door completely open for 3 hours. While we were gone!!!!! And we were gone in the evening!!!!

I keep forgetting things. I was NEVER this bad before Matt left. And now I'm forgetting things all over the place.

Didn't expect this as a side effect of him being gone.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

This was awesome

Today, I didn't have anything planned until our ward mission leader called Thursday night and asked if I would play the piano for a baptism today. As I had nothing else going on, I said sure. We had to go to the stake center (just a different church building) which is in the next city, close to the nearest Target and almost any other store that you can think of. Hit Target, picked up my shoes I had dropped at the shoemaker two weeks ago, hit Payless for some larger tap shoes for a little dancer that somehow came out of my genes. (seriously, how did I make a little dancer????)

I had been planning on weeding today. Because our lawn is just out of control with the weeds, especially in the back. Matt had spent a ton of time (HOURS!!!) weeding it when we first got here, and because of him getting ready to leave, then us being on a trip, our lawn is probably just as bad, if not worse than it was when we moved in. And since our owner refuses to put up a fence, our backyard is on display for all to see. I changed my clothes, and set to work.

I've never been much of a gardener. My parents always had a garden growing up, my dad spent hours taking care of the lawn. We had to pick the tomatoes, green beans, and corn, and whatever else they had growing. We had to help water all the plants. I hated it. I hate bugs, I hate dirt. But today I put on Matt's gloves, and got out the few things we had, and tried to get my kids to help.

Next thing I know, neighborhood kids are swarming in my backyard, asking for gloves, picking up rocks, and saying things like "I like to pull weeds" and "this is fun". I did my best to explain that they needed to get the root all the way down. Not much time later, those kids are still out there "helping" me. Soon, neighbors show up, and decide they can't just watch me anymore, they are going to help too.

We got a good amount done. I'm going to get some weedkiller stuff, and spend a little more time weeding this week. While I still don't like it, my arms got a good workout, I got the backyard looking a bit better (I've bought pansies to plant too! Just need to figure out where would be the best place.), and got to spend some good get-to-know-you time with my neighbors and their kids.

For a day that started out with rain pouring on my roof, and a gray cloudy sky, it ended in a fantastic way. :)

Friday, September 18, 2009

Future project

When we were in Utah, we went to this place called Thanksgiving Point. I had never been there in all my years of going to Utah up to two times a year. We had a great time! It was a Friday, so they had a farmers market going on where I bought this beautiful hand carved wooden bowl, some hand carved wooden spoons, and a woven pine needle basket. We went to the farm they had there, and walked in some of their gardens. We ate at the deli counter (tomato, mozzarella, fresh basil on foccacia bread with a vinaigrette) and went to their shop. And I saw these frames.

I loved them!! But when I looked at their price, I gasped. $30 each!!! And I thought, I make that. So this last week, I went to the only craft store in town (which is also a quilt shop) and picked up a few Yoyo makers. Yoyo's are those round things on the frames. They take a very small amount of fabric for the normal sized ones (about the size of a CD), and are pretty easy and fast to make. Especially if you buy a Yoyo maker instead of doing them by hand. I bought a regular size, a small size, and then a flower one. I picked up some fat quarters that I thought would work in my daughters room (pinks and browns in great patterns), also some Aunt Grace reproduction feedsack squares. You might be asking how I know all this stuff about fabric. I think I learned it by osmosis, seeing that my mom graduated in fashion design, and has been attached to her sewing machine most of her life.:) She spend a lot of time quilting now, so I've become very familiar with a lot of this sort of stuff. Not to mention being dragged to quilt shops everywhere.

I'm hoping to use these yoyo's in other ways as decoration. Or, maybe making a quilt top??? Yoyo quilts look pretty cool, especially if I found some awesome fabric. My next purchase is going to be some inexpensive frames and some buttons. Or maybe no buttons. I'm excited for this project! Hopefully it will keep me occupied through this winter!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Grandpa's farm

While we were in Utah, we went up to my Grandpa's house a few times. The first time was for a family barbecue, and the next was because I had gone up there to spend the night, and Andrew and I ended up super sick, so we stayed for a few days. The morning we woke up sick, I took a walk outside in the cool morning air to try and keep myself from puking out my guts. I took my camera with me so that I could focus on something else other than my churning insides. This guy kept watching me.

My grandpa and his wife (he remarried after my grandma died) board horses. There are probably about 10, if not more, on their property. His wife's previous husband (who also died) would breed horses. And, this is the coolest part, the land the house is on and the surrounding property, has been in her husbands family for over 100 years!!! His great great (perhaps another great) grandfather homesteaded the area. This barn has been standing for over 100 years, and it's built on a rock foundation.

They have things growing all over the place, and these little pansies were just so pretty. I don't have a fantastic camera, so they don't look near as awesome in this picture, but it's not a terrible one!

In the middle of the barn and stable areas, there was a lot of dead grass and the like. Except for these pretty blue flowers.

I can't remember what S (my grandpa's wife) called this thing, so I'm going to call it a sled that is pulled by horses. I thought it was funny because on both sides it says "Uncle Leo's Utah Noodle Parlor". Anyone ever heard of a noodle parlor?????

This bike is just sitting out under this tree. Not sure what the white box is on the end, because their mailbox is out on the street. But I thought it was cool anyway.

Now, this is my favorite thing. At the party, they had all the drinks in this awesome old cooler. I think I'm going to ask if I can have this someday.

Monday, September 7, 2009


I know my posts have been very few and very far between, and there's a good reason for that. Every time I come here all I have to say is just sad, depressing stuff. Nothing of real consequence. This last year has just been rough, and now with Matt gone, we've been home from our trip, plus the rain that has started, I just feel like a sad lumpy thing with nothing positive or good to say about anything.

But. I have a plan.

School is about to start, and with that comes getting up early, and having a schedule. I am going to take that and work on exercising every day. Keep reading my scriptures. Take my vitamin D and calcium supplements. Get out in the sun when it is actually out. Start to tackle things that I neglected that last month that Matt was home. And I'm going to give it a month. If I don't feel better, if I still feel this sad, dreary feeling, then the time has come to find a doctor.

I started today, and I'm hoping that this will get me out of this slump.

So, apologies for the sad posts, and hopefully I'll have more positive things to say soon! If I don't, I just won't post.

Oh, and I've got to start my bread project. Carbs are always happy things.:)

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

So, what do you think?

Friends, I need your help. I need those creative, visionary minds I know are out there to tell me what you think.
This dress was my great aunts dress, probably from the 60's or so. It fits me, mostly. But the style it's in right now is not so good. The sleeves are see through, and the cowl neck doesn't work with me. I would also like to make it shorter, as it would go down to mid calf, or maybe even longer (my great aunt was tall too!).
If this were your dress you wanted to take to the tailor, what would you do? I would like to make this dress into something I could maybe wear to a ball (because eventually I'm sure we'll go to one) or even maybe wear to church. I need your thoughts people. Go into detail because I just can't see things well in my mind, especially when the original is right in front of me. I've got two more dresses I want to ask your opinion on, but lets just work on this one for now.