Friday, February 27, 2009

Three good things

1. The Binky has been located. Please let me know if I should lose it again.

2. I got the cute stripped pitcher for $2.99. Because it was such a buy, I now have two.

3. Do you see that beautiful yellow tomato? I picked it this morning. It is a Russian heirloom tomato named "Azoychka" (Ah-ZOYVH-kah.) As a seedling in a four inch pot, it cost $2.00 more than the pitcher when I purchased it last October from Laurel's Heirloom Tomatoes (no relation:)

I quote, "A spectacular Russian heirloom, "Azoychka" has become a favorite of chefs and tomato lovers world wide. It has a delightful yet subtle hint of citrusy flavor."

I'm off to my own private taste testing. If you are intrigued, there will be plenty more ripe yellow ones in no time!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Flower Fairy Field Trip

The grandgirls spent time with grandpa and grandma who had planned a "Flower Fairy Sleepover" this weekend . Part of the festivities included a field trip to grandpa's favorite flower garden while wearing their new flower fairy frocks (aprons.) There was excitement in the air.

This necessitated a drive to Berridge Nurseries on Camelback Road and about 50th Street in Phoenix. (And yes, that is Camelback Mountain in the background.) The girls thought the ride long, but were delighted to be in this garden center which is laid out like a true garden.

Each apron was made from flower fairy fabric and they were told to try and find flowers which represented the fairies found on their aprons. They used the flower magnifying glass (thanks for sharing, Ruby) to inspect the blooms.

Look carefully and you will find a flower fairy flitting through the greenhouse.

Sadie "takes time to smell the roses" (hydrangeas.) Sadie's favorite color is blue. She sought all things blue, then said simply, "blue."

Heather was on the search for all things red or shades of pink.

Ruby found some yellow orchids on her search for all things golden.

Sadie was more impressed with the fauna. She and grandpa found a zebra who didn't mind her ugly tooth Binky. That Binky is another story (the Glen kind of story.) Fortunately, Sadie and I managed to lose it before returning Sadie to her parents.

It was sometimes hard to keep track of all the flower fairies in the beautiful garden as they followed their noses.

Occasionally, they would stop and allow grandma to take a posed picture.
Heather found her flower match.

Ruby found her flower match as well.

Sadie finally looked at me!

Grandpa Glen finally rounded up his beauties and told them to pick out their favorite flowers to take home. Ruby, girl after my own heart, said she didn't want a flower, but would take a tomato plant instead. Grandpa once again had his ego stroked as other customers congratulated him on his beautiful daughters.

Having been inspired, the flower fairies returned to their important work of making fairy houses once back in their grandparents' garden.

They soon moved their fairy town to the bench at the end of the pool. (Less squatting.) They worked until the sun started going down, eating fresh peas from the garden and the two ripe strawberries to keep up their strength.

Here is grandpa making sure that they don't fall in the pool! Let's give him a break. It must be exhausting to be the bus driver AND chaperone on a field trip!

This is where we received the inspiration for our fun weekend.

For more at home fun on the computer, go here.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Who needs forsythia?

When I lived in Utah, I looked forward to the blooming forsythia because it meant Spring was just around the corner. In Glen's Arizona garden, this blooming yellow bush means Spring is here!

Right now it is the show stopper on the corner.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Family History Trivia

Check out this article about Grandma Baker's cousin and the new Draper Temple. Grandma B would have been so excited to have a temple in the neighborhood. She was a great patron of the Jordon River Temple. This picture was taken in 1985 during a harbor cruise off of San Pedro. Don't skip the article! It will give you some insight into your own family history.

This is a photograph of your ancestor, Thomas E. Ricks. He was a pretty amazing man who played a big part in the settling of the West and the great Mormon Migration. I googled his name once (part of my "how great is the Internet for researching family history") and found that there was another Wikpedia worthy Thomas E. Ricks. He is a journalist for the Washington Post and has written several books about the war with Iraq. I was watching my favorite "talk" show, Charlie Rose (Channel 8 at 1:00 PM) last week. His guest was Thomas E. Ricks. Finally, I could see what he looked like. It was a bit freaky. He was pretty much a twin!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

A Little Shoe Story

Raymond and Henry came to hang out while their mother was taking beautiful pictures of an anonymous family. When grandpa arrived home and decided it was time for outside, Ray's shoes were not to be found. Anywhere. Even after searching under sofas, ottomans, in toy closet, etc. We finally gave up and Raymond explored outside in his socks. His mother said, "No, big deal. They'll show up unless Henry threw them in the garbage." (Henry's newest skill.)

Yesterday was house cleaning day. When I went to move Glen's shoes to vacum, this is what I found. Little shoes all lined up with Grandpa's shoes. Well! That only makes sense. Little Glen really does act and look like Big Glen.

Monday, February 16, 2009

More Glen

This morning as I gave Glen a hair cut, I thought of a couple of images that remind me of Glen. As a young missionary, many in Uruguay thought he looked like John Fitzgerald Kennedy. When I see Teddy Kennedy on the news these days, I do see common physical features even now. (Could it be that the Fitzgerald name on Glen's pedigree chart provides a nose and strong square chin?) I love this piece of yard art on the fence, the green man Glen watching over his garden day and night.

The first time I was exposed to Don and Audrey Wood's "King Bidgood's in the Bathtub," I started laughing right out loud in a quiet place. It was if they had used my hubby for their model. Enjoy!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

14th Day of Love

Glen and Laurel, BYU Campus, 1994

I love Glen because he has always been willing to meet me in the middle. In a 34 year marriage, there have been many opportunities for compromise. It's not always easy to negotiate and to be respectful enough to listen and ponder one another's point of view, but it is necessary. It also involves trust; trust that you will not be belittled for your feelings or ideas.

In the photo we are back on the campus where we first met in 1974. We are visiting our oldest son, now a freshman at BYU and who has already met his future mate, Susan. As I have posted my 14 Days of Love, it has reminded me that we are all a part of the circle of love and the flow of life. Generations come and go but the most important thing is to LOVE one another.

Happy Valentine's Day!

Friday, February 13, 2009

13th Day of Love

I love Glen because he is a very generous person. He is generous with his time, his talents, his resources, and his love. In our early marriage I often felt like he was "generous to a fault." I've changed my mind on this one as well. It really is better to be optimistic, friendly and generous.

The photo is of something red that Glen gave me this week for Valentine's Day. It is a gel mat to stand on during long stints in the kitchen. I loved it this morning as I made rolls for a missionary zone conference. These five rolls are the ones I saved for Glen. I felt slightly guilty when an elder sought me out and asked if there were any more rolls, but only slightly. I thought my generous man deserved some, too.

This is the something red that I got Glen for Valentine's Day. I went to his section of the bookstore to find this book. The red cover was important, but I also liked the title.

Yes, the flap is covering up the "Oriental Trader" logo on this box which arrived this week. Glen was asked to host the HP Valentine Social in his beautiful backyard and of course, generously said, "Yes." It looks like he has also decided to decorate.

I really do appreciate all the generous things that he does. Most of them are in a quiet, anonymous manner. I'll keep it that way.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

12th Day of Love

I love Glen because he has never met a stranger. I did not love this quality at first. I felt embarrassed when he spoke to the waiter, sales clerk, teller, etc., as if they were his long lost friends. Now it doesn't bother me a bit. In fact, I try to emulate his ease with others, although I'm never quite so at ease as he.

You may be wondering why I am posting this picture of our house soon after we purchased it in 1991. I wanted you to see a before and after. It will soon all tie together. Glen had a vision for his home, much like he has a vision for most things he attempts. Those piles of dirt came from the backyard when the pool was dug.

This is our home today. He spent time mowing his grass and watering the many colorful plants before he left for work this morning. He looks forward to these tasks because he talks to EVERY early morning walker. Sometimes he talks them into following him into the backyard.

This is how it looked in 1991 when we first moved in. That's indoor/outdoor carpeting covering the dirt, not really share-worthy. Notice how the palm trees are only as tall as the fence.

This is how it looks today. He loves sharing our garden. Recently he noticed that two women, apparently a daughter and her elderly mother, were stopping to look as they passed by each morning. He invited them into his backyard. He sat with them at the table and had a good long conversation. When they left, he told them they were welcome to rest on the benches out front anytime.

There you have it. My short tale of the extrovert. And you will be pleased to know that the introvert has become more extro.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

11th Day of Love

I love Glen because he has become a caring, loving, and fun grandpa. He is delighted to once again have unconditional love from the little people in his life. His grandchildren are his joy.

There he is lining up his favorite people by age so that they can take a whack at the pinata on his last birthday. He is still making things fun.

Once again there are little ones willing to help him blow out his birthday candles.

He is a very blest man and I am so fortunate to be enjoying the blessings with him.

Dearest Janae, Thank you for the use of your beautiful pictures!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

10th Day of Love

I love Glen because he has been such a "fun" parent. I've often thought how it would have been for my children to not have had their father in their life - boring and quiet. Glen has been the recreation director in our marriage and family (just like his mother was for her family.) Glen makes the good times roll!

If I had been present for this rolling good time it would NOT HAVE HAPPENED! I birthed these five beautiful children and their safety has always been my up most priority. Did they love riding on top of the car? Yes indeed, and they sometimes still talk of it.

Glen is trying to blow up the rubber raft which he brought to fathers/sons outing on top of his little blue Volkswagen. The "bug" was also packed with a tent, all camping gear, folding chairs, and three boys. It was a traveling circus and they had a very good time, especially enjoying the wide eyes as they rolled into camp.

There would have been no underwater pictures without Glen in their life. They would never have known how they looked in a watery world.

It was a family tradition for Glen to pack up the kids early on a Saturday morning in late December after a snowstorm up north. They would load the pickup with snow and head home to engage in a traveling snowball fight. Friends and neighbors learned that it was dangerous to open their door on a December Saturday.

Glen's philosophy has always been "the more the merrier." This van is packed with the family plus some Ostler cousins. I think that's Brittany standing outside looking in. We were on our way to Disneyland, the happiest place on earth.

Glen always thought that a family activity was the best kind of activity. This may have been the only time all the bikes had tires with air. It was a very delightful evening.

Glen has also provided the "fun" for many ward activities. He and the kids were always filling an ice chest full of water balloons for the water balloon launcher. He was also the kind of dad who took kids and their friends teepeeing. When visiting Utah in July, a trip to Wyoming for fireworks was usually a given. Most of my children's fondest memories were orchestrated by their father. That's my Glen!

Please comment if you want to add any "fun" memories of your own.

Monday, February 9, 2009

9th Day of Love

I love Glen because he LOVES, LOVES, LOVES his children. They have been his main delight - might we even say his hobby. He loves them:

Even when he has to share his snow cone.

Especially when they "heart" him.

Even when they blow out his birthday candles.

Even though coaching t-ball is hot in Arizona.

Even when they teepee his bed.
(Especially when they teepee his bed.
He's just sorry he missed the actual activity.)

Even when the field trip chaperone is expected to get wet, too.

Even when the baby in the stroller becomes taller than he is
(all his sons are taller, this one is just much taller.)

Even when he drives an older station wagon instead of a flashy sports car.

But mostly because they jump for joy because he's right in the middle of the fun.

Glen always made a point of taking a child with him on errands whenever possible. (I looked forward to him being at home so that I didn't have to take anyone with me!) He knew that one on one attention was a great way to make a child feel special.