Monday, May 30, 2005

Summer Reading

I just finished Anna Karenina this morning. I think I liked it. I'm not sure. It was interesting to read about Russian Culture in the late 1800's. For some reason I have not pictured Russia as a high culture, literary, artistic place. I also had not really thought of Russia as so connected to Europe. I want to learn a little more about Russia. I would love to see uniforms and dresses of that era.

Is there a movie of A. K.? Kinda like Pride and Prejudice?

I think my favorite character was Levin. I liked his confused thoughts. I especially liked his thoughts about war with the Turks - though "everyone" wanted to go to war, Levin knew that the "everyone" he knew had no interest in the Turks at all.

I would like to make a reading list for myself and for Hannah to read from this summer. What were your favorite books when you were 11? What are you reading this summer?

Thursday, May 26, 2005

Newest little neice!

Monday, May 23, 2005

We had a very exciting Sacrament Meeting yesterday. First, 3 baby blessings. Then, 4 Confirmations, then - - - (drum roll) a new Bishopric. Our bishop is moving to Colorado next month, so the change was not a big suprise, but it was still fun. The new bishop is married to my best friend. She is also one of our Primary counselors. I have a feeling that I will have to find a new counselor. I am sad about that, but her husband is a great man and will be an excellent bishop.

They live right up the street, Sydney and Emily play with their kids all the time. Hannah occasionally gets talked into playing dolls with them, but she won't admit to enjoying it.

It is fun when a bishop changes. The new bishop has new goals and ideas and excitement. Our bishop will probably deploy in the fall, though. That will be hard for him, and his family, and his counselors, and the ward. Maybe he will not have to go after all.

There is so much change in our ward right now. In Primary, we need 3 teachers (maybe a counselor) and a pianist now, and in the fall (when the guys deploy) we will need 3 more. Two YW counselors, and 2 Elders Quorum counselors are also moving this summer, and one High Priest Group counselor just moved, and the other was just called as Bishop. I know everything will fall into place, but it does worry me a little.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

Science Fair

This week is the science fair. Hannah has been working on her project since early April. Our neighbor is a dentist, and when Hannah mentioned to him, that she was interested in doing a project about teeth, he offered to bring home some teeth for her. He pulls wisdom teeth on Mondays, so he gave her one day's harvest - 8 huge, white teeth.

She decided to test the effect of soda on teeth. Dr. Jones told her that the acidity of some sodas is very close to the acidity of battery acid, and can stain and weeken teeth. Hannah put each tooth in a cup of soda, and let them sit for about a month. One tooth sat in water - it still looked good at the end of the project, but the teeth in Coke and Dr Pepper looked all yucky, and the tooth in Fanta turned orange!

Week 4, Fanta

Week 4, Coke

Sydney and her friend Rebekah learned about clouds and rain. We heated up water on the stove, then poured the hot water into a glass jar. Then we poured most of the hot water back into the pan. We covered the top of the jar with a lid, then set ice on the lid. The top part of the jar fogged up, then droplets gathered and ran down the sides of the jar. It was just like a little cloud and rain.

Those two girls were really cute writing out their information. Sydney made a paper model of the jar, and Rebekah made a model of the water cycle. We had a blue project board to put their information on, and we cut out a white cloud for the title of the project. It looked so cute. Pictures coming soon.


In other news, our hot water heated died and flooded the basement. Someone is coming to replace it, but he is not here yet, though he said he would be here at 9am (it is 10am now) Soon I will have to start running errands. Yikes.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Gerber Daisies

I hosted a lovely baby shower today. I am so glad it is all finished. I ran all over town yesterday looking for Gerber Daisies. After 4 stops I decided to just make some phone calls. Gerber daisies go for $3.50 - $4.00 each. Ouch. I called Albertsons - Gerber Daisies - 3 packs of 4 flowers for $10.00! Yippee! That is less than $1 each. I bought several packs and put each daisy in a tall little bud vase, and set 7 daisies on the piano and 7 across the middle of the table. So cute!

I was up way too late baking muffins and vacuuming and washing walls. I think it is nap time.

We served bagels and yummy flavored cream cheese, egg souffle, muffins, fruit with a yummy cream and white chocolate dip, and juice, and cake. About 10 people came, which was just the right amount for our home.

This is the shower for the neighbor who had a little tussle with the other neighbor. We invited the other neighbor, but she did not come.

Did you see the pictures of the snow? It is all melted, but our big bush/tree in the back is all broken. We are going to have to cut it down. There was a lot of tree damage all over town.

We have so much going on this week I am having a hard time even thinking. Here are some of the things I can remember - Science Fair, play practice, Enrichment Meeting, class picnic, tour of middle school, last soccer game, baptism, scout commitee meeting (not going), wives meeting, another baby shower, family dance, piano recital, track day for syd, track meet for han, and, uh, hope that's all. It is busy, and crazy, and I have to take a nap every day so that I can keep up in the afternoon. What are you up to this week?

Crazy Dude



Nice sled

Boarder Chick

Friday, May 13, 2005

Ellsworth AFB is on the Base Closure List

It seems like a sad thing. We really like Rapid City, and the base seems to really benefit the community. There are still some steps before the list is actually approved. So maybe Ellsworth will still make it.

Here is a link to the base closure list.

I really like it here in Rapid City. The city is cute, the schools are small, the base housing is really nice, we are only 12 hours from Mom and Dad, we love being able to go up and hike in the Black Hills (minus the ticks), the grass is green and soft, and it doesn't get too hot in the summer. We do have snow on the ground (on May 13?) That is odd, and I will post some pictures, but we will really hate to leave this place.

Good thing we did not buy the house that I fell in love with.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Rapid City Schools Closed

We have snow. Good thing I bought those snow boots at the garage sale! It snowed all day yesterday and all night, and we have about 10 inches of really wet, heavy snow.

Monday, May 09, 2005

To Do, To Do, To Do

Sew Ducky Towels (5)
*Primary Meeting Agenda
Nursery Substitute
*Call Sasha's Mom
Laundry (suprise, suprise)
*De-tick the house (saw 3 today)
Jog Daily
Weights 2x
Stop baking cookies
Pay bills
Plan meals
Grocery shopping
Plan Sharing Time

*= Yippee! I did it!

This Ticks Me Off!

We had a lovely Mother's Day here in Rapid City. We thought going on a picnic up in the Black Hills would be fun, so we headed up to Custer State Park after church. The rain had blown away and the sun was up. We saw bison and deer and pronghorn and wild flowers and starlings and....

We decided to go on a little walk near a river. John was funny, pointing to every rock. Sam (the dog) was having a great time exploring the area and rolling in buffalo chips. Sydney had been really upset about the trip - she prefers to stay home - but she started having fun, and even said: We should do this more often.

Just as we were heading back to the car, I saw a tick on my pants. Then one on Hannah's jacket, one on Emily, aaaaaaaaaaaaaa. We really hustled back to the car. Each time we would stop to brush a tick off someone, more would appear. It was so creapy. Seeing a tick makes you have to investigate every itch. We could see the ticks just sitting on the grass, waiting to pounce.

When we got back to the car we all stripped down and tried to get rid of all the ticks. I found two in Hannah's socks, and on one crawling on my underrooos. Yikes!

Sam was hopeless. We use frontline on him. It is an oily flea and tick contol product that is applied to the back of a dog. I'm not sure how it works, but I think it gets into the dogs system and makes him not tastey to pests. The frontline did not prevent the ticks from making an attempt.

Nathan removed several ticks from Sam before we headed home, about 15 ticks while brushing him on the porch, and like 30 while bathing Sam. None of the ticks were attached to him, they were just in his fur.

I found one tick on each of the kids heads. John's and Hannah's were not attached, but Emily's and Sydney's were. Yuck.

I dreamed of ticks all night.

I rechecked everyone this morning and we are all clear, but I'm sure there are some in the house that came in on our clothes and on Sam. I have not cleaned out the van, and I'm sure there are some in there waiting to attack. Writing about the ticks makes me have to feel around on my head.

Dog Tick
Here are some ways to prevent tick bites:

Avoid tick-infested areas, especially in May, June, and July (many local health departments and park or extension services have information on the local distribution of ticks).

Wear light-colored clothing so that ticks can be spotted more easily.

Wear long pants and tuck the pant legs into your socks or boots; wear a long-sleeved shirt and tuck it into your pants; and use a hat for added protection.

Tape the area where pants and socks meet so that ticks cannot crawl under clothing.

Spray insect repellent containing DEET (products shouldn't contain any more than 30% DEET) on clothes, or treat clothes (especially pants, socks, and shoes) with permethrin, which kills ticks on contact. Remember that these products should be used with caution.

Walk in the center of trails to avoid overhanging grass and brush.

After being outdoors, remove your clothing and wash and dry it at a high temperature.

Inspect yourself carefully and remove any attached ticks. For tick removal: grasp the tick with fine tweezers as close to the skin surface as possible, pull straight up with a slow, steady force and avoid crushing the tick or slipping off the body. Ultimately you do not want to force any material from the tick into your skin. Clean the area of tick attachment with disinfectant. Ticks (saved in a sealed container) can be submitted to the Mosquito Commission laboratory or certain local health departments for identification.

Saturday, May 07, 2005

We survived the 2 day garage sale and have the sunburn to prove it. We decided that we would not sell lemonade and I am so glad. As our neighbors were setting up we found that there were cookies/lolipops/juice/hotdogs/chips/etc next door, cinnamon rolls across the street, brownies two doors down, and popcorn/lemonade/snowcones across the way. It would have been sad to see Sydney sitting there all forelorn waiting for someone to take pitty and buy lemonade.

So we did not sell food, but we did sell a few toys - one doll stroller/carseat/playpen, one doll bed, one 12 speed bike (that our neighbor gave us in TX), and one purple bike - for a grand total of $35!!!! yippee. Our friend sold most of her things, but it was a little embarrassing to have her garage sale items here at our house. They were odd items, and she had them priced way higher than I would have paid. So (since she was not here the whole time) people would come, look at the price, and ask me if I would be willing to bargain. But since it wasn't mine, and she didn't want to lower the prices, it looked like I was a little crazy. Oh well. It was fun to chat with her.

There was an incredible amount of traffic and people. This place was as busy as the county fair. If you were having a baby, you could find everything you ever dreamed of. I wish all you sisters were here, there were so many baby girl things! I really had to look to find anthing for John. I did find a nice Colombia coat for him, snow boots for me, snow shoes, sled, and a fancy ice scraper. Our neighbors are moving to TX - not so much snow there. I also bought a Johnny Jump-up toy for Mary! And some baby girl things for Sarah. Sorry Anna, my John and your Juddah were pretty much out of luck. I think I will leave the Johnny Jumper in the middle of the front room so that I will not forget to go to the post office.

Hannah and Sydney had a great time wandering around finding "hot deals". Hannah found paint ball stuff at one house. Nathan bought two guns and all the stuff to go with them. I guess he is planning to go paintballing with Rick this summer!

Friday, May 06, 2005

Neighborhood Garage Sale

Our neighborhood has a huge garage sale each Mother's Day weekend. Everyone in the area is gearing up for the big day. As we are all military, there are many people getting ready to move and dejunking, and others who just moved in and need to get rid of things that just don't fit here. It is all rather exciting.

I give our stuff away to the Salvation Army as it piles up. Usually by the time I am ready to part with it, it is in pretty sad condition. So I don't have much of anything for the garage sale, but a friend from the base asked to use our drive way, and she brought over some fun things.

Last year the girls set up a lemonade/cookie stand and made about $60. Wow. Too bad we told everyone about our success, because now 4 other families on our street are going to sell goodies. Last year we only sold the cookies on Saturday, but there was lots of traffic on Friday evening as well, so we are considering having the cookies out tonight.

I cannot remember what we charged last year. I think it was 10 cents each or 3 for a quarter, but maybe it was a quarter each or 5 for a dollar. Hannah will remember. To stay competitive we may have to drop our prices.


Today, Sydney is trying out for the school talent show. She is hoola-hooping with three hoops. It is pretty amazing to see her skinny little tummy keep all those hoops up and spinning. I hope she gets to be in the talent show.


Do you think I should sell the basinette?

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

I wish I could make the text part of my blog wider. I am getting tired of the thin column of writing in the middle of the screen. I have tried playing with the template, but I have no idea what I am doing. I know I could change to a different blog template, but then I would have to redo all the links in my sidebar, and I am lazy. And I might lose my pet duck.

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Hannah brought home a note from school today from a retirement center near here. They are asking for 5th grade volunteers to come work there for 2-3 hours a week. What do you think? Have you spent time as a volunteer in a nursing home? Would it be a positive experience for her, or awkward and uncomfortable? I may go up there and visit the home and speak to the activity director before deciding.

Can you believe that the school year is nearly over? Time to start thinking about summer. Swimming lessons. Camping. Fireworks at Mt. Rushmore. Bike riding. Oregon. Which reminds me, we have a new missionary from LaGrand. I didn't talk to him, but Nathan says he knows Brandon and all those guys! fun!