Sunday, July 20, 2008


On my last post, The Gramma Tag, I joked about having to clean more toilets, using more milk and cereal, etc. when our grandkids come. Please don't get me wrong. We love having our grandkids come.

Anyone who has been in our house, knows how much we cater to our grandkids. We have furniture that they can sit on, food in the cupboard they can eat, toys in the kitchen corner to play with, books in the bookcases for them to read. They are always welcomed!

What would it be like if you didn't have your grandkids in your home? Well, Sister Adams and I sat appalled one evening at dinner in the Ambassador Restaurant at the PCC when one of the volunteers described his house: No children allowed. Huge glass windows overlooking the valley. A showcase. A home out of Better Homes and Gardens. Etc. Etc. He went on through most of the dinner describing his house, how inconvenient it was when his wife died and left him with a teenage daughter, how his new wife loves to travel with him, etc.

We both came away dumbfounded! We certainly lost any respect we had for the man if we had some before. We knew he was different....but so anti children? It was unbelievable that someone who is active in their church and has a testimony that Families are Forever, that they are an eternal unit, could say the things he said. For us, no possession in your life can replace the joy of having your children and grandchildren around you.

I have heard some people say they wished they could have had their grandchildren first when they were younger! LOL. But that is only a testimony of how great their own children are to have raise good grandchildren.

One day last fall, I was manning a table that the PCC Mission Settlement had set up at an LDS Conference at BYUH. I was wearing my missionary badge on my muumuu. Sister Ardath Kapp came by and noticing my badge, said: "A mission in Hawaii. What a sacrifice!" Of course, she was only saying it in the same way as others who have commented on a mission in Hawaii, that is wasn't much of a sacrifice to go there.

I told her, "Yes, Sister Kapp, it is a sacrifice." "What are you sacrificing here?" she responded. "I have twenty-four grandkids at home." I replied. "Oh," she said, "I understand."

Yes, it was a sacrifice to leave all those kids behind. Being a grandmother is great, because you can enjoy your grandkids, but you don't have all the frustration of having to raise them. Well, not all of them, and not all the time.

We missed out on graduations, a wedding, a new baby, a baptism, and a missionary farewell among many things. We missed just seeing them and being around them.

So, we don't care how many times we have to scrub the toilet, buy more milk and cereal, buckle kids into their car seats, wipe up the floor. We enjoy our grandkids and we love to have them visit.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

I Want to Play Too!

Gramma Tag

How many loads of laundry do you do every week? Two; three if we have the grandkids over.

How many toilets do you scrub in a month? We have three bathrooms for three people. But only two are used daily. And one of those two is only used in the morning and in the evening. I don’t scrub that toilet. Hmm, I usually don’t have to clean the main bathroom either because no one uses it unless the grandkids come. So I clean one bathroom, once a week x four weeks.

How many diapers have you changed? Well, I had six children and now 24 grandchildren. If they are in diapers for an average of twenty-four months and they use about five diapers a day in an average month of 30 days…that would be 30 x 24 x 30 x five =108,000 . Oh, I know I didn’t change all those grandkids diapers, but I did work as a nurse in pediatrics for three or four years and in the new born nursery for several years, and we changed diapers on those infants probably once every hour if not more often!! And most of the time they were the cloth diapers! They had to be rinsed out in the toilet!

How often do you have to empty your vacuum? I just emptied the vacuums for the first time this year.

How many loads of dishes do you do each day? We run the dishwasher about every third day, unless the grandkids come.

How often do you scrub your floors? Oh, probably once a month…or at least spot clean them once a month, unless the grandkids come.

How many boxes of cereal does your family consume in one week? One or two bowls a week, unless the grandkids come.

How many buckles do you buckle when loading the car? I just buckle my own seatbelt. Grampa can buckle his own. If we have the grandkids come, then it takes us a half hour to figure out how that car seat works.

How many gallons of milk do you buy each week? A gallon usually last us for three weeks, or until it expires, unless the grandkids come.

How much does it cost to fill your vehicle with gas? About $40 every two weeks.

How often do you go to Costco or Sam's? Twice a week.

How many meals (equivalent) end up on your kitchen floor? It depends whose meal it is: The ants? They had a feast last week with a tiny piece of potato chip. I messed them up big time by squirting a circle of detergent around them. (I learned that in Hawaii)

How many beds have you made in the past year? One bed x 365 days = 365 divided by two (because Grampa helps) = 182 ½

How many baths do you give each week? At my age it should be: How many baths do you take each week? Well, in Hawaii, we needed at least one shower a day. Here in the desert, well that is another story.

How many Polly Pocket shoes have you vacuumed? None, unless the grandkids have come over

Airsoft BB's and/or rocks have you found in the washer/dryer? None, since Grampa stopped collecting them.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Friday Nights at La'ie Point

Sometime during the late winter months in Hawaii, Gordon and I started going out to La'ie Point on Friday evenings. We would stop at Subway, get a two for one sandwich, and drive out to sit at the Point in the car. We went out looking for whales that were migrating North. All the other missionaries said they had spotted them out that way, so we went looking ourselves. It made for a very pleasant evening. The breeze was so fresh, the sky and ocean so blue, and it was very peaceful, just sitting there, eating, and watching for whales.

Several times we did spot some, but they were so far out from the Point that they were really hard to see.

One Saturday we went with Karelyn and LaVere Adams, the CES missionaries, on the "Star of Honolulu" on a whale spotting cruise. It was guaranteed deal: if they didn't spot any whales, then we could have another trip. It was a two hour trip around Waikiki and beyond. And we did see a whale.... a baby one at that. The Captain explained to the 100's on that cruise that the mother whale was teaching her baby how to come up for air. We did follow them for quite some time, but we really didn't see either of them 'breach' or jump out of the water. They just came to the surface and blew. All we saw was their spouts and their backs. But we did see a whale, so there was no other trip in store.

Fly Lady = Fly Baby

Well, the fly baby in me is back! It has been dormant for the past year while we were in Hawaii. Why? Well, life there was very easy and very simple. When there is just two adult people in a three room house and you only brought four suitcases of stuff to put in it, there wasn't much work to keeping it maintained. Oh, about every two weeks, Gordon would vacuum and I would clean the bathroom and mop the linoleum in the kitchen. Oh, and a quick dusting of the few pieces of furniture we had.

Dishes weren't much of a problem because we mostly used paper plates and cups. We only had to wash the utensils and the one pot or pan that we used to cook our simple meal. We usually ate the leftovers the next day, so there was no food to sit in the fridge and spoil. We rarely used the oven, so I never had to clean it. And though we had a four burner stove, I only used a small one or a larger one. I keep the other two burners covered.

Washing clothes wasn't much of a chore as I only did one or two batches a week and that was usually in the evening when we were winding down from the busy day. After the batch was dry, it didn't take long to put the clothing or towels in their rightful place.

When we were getting ready to move back here to the mainland, some of the students offered to help me clean the house. I didn't need to take them up on their kind offer as the house and the cupboards had been maintained because of the things I had learned a few years ago from Fly Lady.

Our biggest problem was just shipping the stuff we had accumulated and wanted to take back home, or giving away those things what we chose not to leave for the next missionaries who were moving into the apartment.

Those boxes that we shipped are the things that are facing me today. On Thursday, I was set to hit the bedroom with all the enthusiasm of a new fly baby, but the lack of hangers set me back. Instead I went to Wal-Mart with Sandy to buy some material for a bean bag cooker (another blog about that later), material to make my chicken pincushions for the DUP museum (another blog) and the very needed hangers. No sooner that I got back from that excursion, that Gordon told me that Hailey was in a soccer tournament and that we should go watch her play.

That was more fun that tackling the bedroom, so off we went to watch Hailey help her team win! Naturally by the time we got home I only had time to make a quick dinner (posted on the whatcha got cookin'? website) before I went off with Sandy to her Enrichment Night meeting where I saw some dear old friends from the old ward and met some new ones. There we cut out the makings of the bean bag cooker. We still have to sew them up and stuff it with the polystyrene beads that come in bean bags.

So this morning, the fly baby emerged and I hit my closet. I chose to clean out all the boxes I had put in there and had never opened since. I also found some little gifts that I bought for my granddaughters a few years ago and forget I had them. (I am always doing that, but my fly baby tendencies should help me be better.) There are more girls now, so I have to find some more of those little gifts so no one will feel left out.

Anyway, I found lots of room on my clothes racks for my clothes. It looks so nice and neat and I can find everything. Of course, you should see my hallway and the other bed room. :( That will have to be tackled on another fly baby exercise.

If some of you wonder who Fly Lady is or who have forgotten about her great ideas which are just good common sense, you should look at her website:

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Here is the cover of the first book in the series!
So much for the early enthusiasm... :(

No, it hasn't helped that first Dad and I were speaking in the 1st Ward's sacrament meeting last Sunday, and I had to organize my thoughts on what to say there. It's hard to put into 12 minutes all the wonderful things we learned on our service mission to Hawaii.

Having that over, I was finally beginning to feel good. I had stopped coughing and was actually getting some energy back and saw all the 100's of projects that I need to start tackling. However, on Tuesday, Dad had his surgery on his back to remove the fatty cyst that has been growing very fast for the past year or so. He did very well and has not taken any pain medication for it. It is the itching that is troubling him. If I had a scanner, I would scan the picture I had to OR nurse take before they took the specimen to the pathologist. Then again, maybe I wouldn't.

Early, early Wednesday morning I woke with churning in my stomach and I won't describe what then happened, but it took several hours for me to finally get back to sleep. So, Wednesday was a 'wasted' day as far as what I had planned to accomplish. However, lying around in bed, I started reading the books that Steve and Deidrien gave me last year before we left for Hawaii.

They are the series of books by Alesander McCall Smith about "The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency" . I have two in the series of nine and when we get out to a bookstore, I will be getting the other seven.

Here is the review from the back of the book: "..the No 1 Ladies' Dectective Agency series tells the story of the delightfully cunning and enornously engaging Precious Ramotswe, who is drawn to her profession to 'help people with the problems in their lives.' Immediately upon setting up shop in a small storefront in Gaborone [Botswana Africa], she is hired to track down a missing husband, undercover a con man, and follow a wayward daughter. But the case that tugs at her heart and lands her in danger is that of a missing eleven-year-old boy, who may have been snatched by witch doctors." These books are fun and easy to read. Just right for someone who doesn't have the energy to get out of bed. Here is the URL for the website. Be sure to turn on the music. It is delightful!

I am halfway through the second book already, but I can't pick it up today until I accomplish something around the maybe tackle the bedroom. It still looks like the day after we got home from Hawaii. Of course, in order to find a place for all the stuff in there, I have to clear around other things as well. A never ending job, isn't it?

Friday, July 11, 2008

I might as well jump onto the bandwagon. Half of my kids and several of my grandkids are bloggers now. Not that I will have many interesting things to say, but maybe I can share some of my wisdom that came through the many years I have lived.