Friday, October 30, 2009

A Short Commercial

I really like these new Clorox dishcloths and towels. They are made to be washed in Clorox so the colored stripes are bleach safe, and the white part stays true white and stain-free. But more importantly, when washed in Clorox they become antibacterial ~ which is a nice feature for kitchen towels.

Finished Project and a Revelation

I finished this lap quilt today. Laura made the rectangles pieced section in the center before Abby was born, but then she realized that it matched my house more than hers, so she gave it to me to finish.

I couldn't resist making a couple of pillows to match

I tied it on the back side so it wouldn't detract from the pieced pattern on the front

Many of my friends are getting into quilting and I keep thinking that maybe I should. This little project was a test to see if I would like piecing quilts. I don't! I like to sew things like Halloween costumes and curtains ~ things that don't require precision and perfection. It's not fun to me if it has to be perfect. I like it to be quick. I just don't have the quilting personality, I guess.

But I happy with this little project!

It's all good

Thursday, October 29, 2009

One Reason I Love Computers

Just a few minutes ago Laura called and said that Andrew kept saying "Nana" and wanted to show me his flu shot and pointed at the computer. So we got on ichat and I had a lovely little visit with these three cuties:

How wonderful is that?!

Computer Accessories

Ever since getting my laptop (which I love) I've been missing the 10-key part of the keyboard. When I was in college and working at BYU I was responsible for totalling the time cards and I got pretty fast at type-touching with 10-key. Whenever I need to type in numbers I automatically want to move my right hand to the 10-key. I'm not so good at the numbers in a row above the keyboard, so it really slows me down not to have 10-key.

The other day I spent a couple of hours looking at online forums on that subject. It turns out that Apple just deleted the number lock function on the MacBook Pro. Some people are very unhappy about it (me, for one) because they used the 10-key function that is embedded in most laptop keyboards for certain music writing programs and some games. I just like it for Quicken and online shopping ~ I can speed-enter my debit card number! Through my research I discovered that the only real solution is to have a separate 10-key keypad. I got a cheap one at Staples, which didn't work with my Mac. So I had to return it and resort to the more expensive bluetooth model sold at SimplyMac. I am thrilled with it. I love having a 10-key keypad at my fingertips again!

I've also been looking for some kind of case for my laptop for when I take it with me somewhere. I haven't found anything that I love until yesterday at Target, of all places. It's blue, of course, and I like the quilted look over the modern look of most neoprene sleeves.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Movie Fest and Richard Matheson

Last night some of my children invited me to watch "I Am Legend" with them. I hadn't seen it before. It was a little violent for me (judging by how many times I hid behind my blanket and Brian said "Mom, you have to watch this part"). I like that it ended hopeful.

As the credits were rolling I noticed that it was based on a novel by Richard Matheson. I recognized that name. He also wrote the novel "Bid Time Return" on which my favorite movie, "Somewhere In Time" was based. I googled him and found out is an 83-year-old American author and screenwriter primarily in the fantasy, horror and science fiction genres.

He also wrote "What Dreams May Come," a fantasy movie starring Robin Williams. Interestingly, the titles "What Dreams May Come" and "Bid Time Return" are Shakespearean quotes.

A little more research revealed some interesting tidbits about how the story "Bid Time Return" came about. (from Wikipedia)

While traveling with his family, Matheson was entranced by the portrait of American actress Maude Adams in Piper's Opera House in Nevada. "It was such a great photograph," Matheson reports, "that creatively I fell in love with her. What if some guy did the same thing and could go back in time?" Then Matheson researched her life and was struck by her reclusiveness. To create the novel, he resided for many weeks at the Hotel del Coronado (where the novel takes place) and dictated his impressions into a tape recorder while experiencing himself in the role of Richard Collier. Matheson based much of the biographical information about the character of Elise McKenna directly on Adams.

Maude Adams
She is hauntingly beautiful

The plot thickens when you find out that Maude Adams was a Mormon actress in the 1900's. Her grandparents joined the Church in New England and came across the plains with the pioneers to Utah where her mother was born.

She achieved her greatest success in
"Peter Pan," and in fact, was the first actress to portray Peter Pan on Broadway. She was in many John Barrie (author of Peter Pan) plays; it was said that he wrote "The Little Minister" with her in mind for the lead role. She had a yearly income of more that a million dollars at her peak.

Well, after all that, we
had to watch "Somewhere In Time." Of course, my children have seen it, but Trevor and Michelle had never seen it, so it was fun to share it with a new audience.

Matheson has stated, "Somewhere in Time is the story of a love which transcends time, What Dreams May Come, is the story of a love which transcends death.... I feel that they represent the best writing I have done in the novel form."

Happy Birthday, Ayden!

Today Ayden is five years old!

We had a birthday dinner and celebration for him yesterday.

Ayden and Nana
Is there anything better than a child's arms around your neck?!

Sophie showing her dimples


Saturday we went to the dance concert "Thriller" because our niece Alysha was in it. I have wondered about this show, but never seen it until this year. It's a Halloween Dance concert where all the dances are spoofs on Halloween movies or have Halloween themes. It was a little disturbing in its macabre nature. But I always enjoy watching dance.

That's our sweet Alysha in the middle!

Alysha and Jenny
(and Uncle Keith taking a photo)

Friday, October 23, 2009

Gingerbread Pumpkin Trifle

I made this dessert for the High Priests' Social tonight

And here's the recipe:


  • 2 packages (14-1/2 ounces each) gingerbread cake mix
  • 1 package (4.6 ounces) cook-and-serve vanilla pudding mix
  • 3 cups milk
  • 1 can (29 ounces) solid-pack pumpkin
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 carton (12 ounces) frozen whipped topping, thawed, divided


  • Prepare and bake gingerbread according to package directions, using two greased 9-in. round baking pans. Cool completely on wire racks.
  • Meanwhile, for pudding, in a large saucepan, combine pudding mix and milk; stir until smooth. Cook and stir over medium heat until mixture comes to a boil. Cook and stir 1-2 minutes longer or until thickened. Remove from the heat; cool to room temperature. Combine pumpkin and brown sugar; stir into pudding.
  • In a 4-qt. glass serving bowl, crumble one gingerbread cake; gently press down. Top with half of pudding mixture and whipped topping. Repeat layers. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Yield: 25 servings (1 cup each).

Dry Canyon Hike

I had a lovely couple of hours hiking up Dry Canyon this morning with Kathy and Annie. It's so fun to walk through the fallen leaves and see all the beautiful fall colors.

Can you see Annie on the trail?

View from the front

View from the back

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Help! I Can't Stop Painting!

Well, I guess I can stop. But two more quick projects yesterday:

I learned about this cool magnetic paint and decided to try it so that I could take down this white board and just put the magnets on the wall itself.

The magnetic paint is this black primer; it takes 3 coats with 30 minutes drying time between each coat.
(During the drying time I worked on another long-overdue project to be revealed at a later date ~ I've got to give my readers something to look forward to:)

And the final result:

Not all of my magnets would stick to the wall. The ones I made with scrapbook paper modgepodged onto clear stones would not stick; I guess I should try to find stronger magnets. But I still think it is fun to just have a magnetic wall!

While I was in painting mode I repainted the railing in the garage and touched up the walls.

Brian's been helping me, too. He painted the trim around all the outside doors and the outside of the shed. I guess every five years or so you have to touch up paint!

I'm really grateful for paint.
It's so easy to make things look clean and fresh and so many colors to choose!

Fall Colors

The fall colors have been so lovely this year. So brilliant.
These pictures are from a walk up the canyon.

I love the bright red of the "burning bush" plants.
I've got to plant some of these in my yard!

I'm so grateful to live at the foot of my mountain,

And this is the view from my street.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Rainbows, Clouds, and Football

What a view from the bleachers at THS!

It was Michael's last home game and we got to join him on the field at half time where he was honored with a blanket and a rose for his Mom. We're proud of Michael and really had a great time watching him play football this fall.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

The Saga of the Buffet

Almost four years ago I decided that I wanted a buffet for my dining room, something that I could serve food on for Sunday dinners and that could store crockpots and tablecloths. I researched and finally decided on a buffet from Four Chairs and had them finish it in white. I loved it! It was the perfect size and functioned just as I had hoped.

I even made a special table runner for it that I had machine quilted with a heat resistant layer (like in hot pads) so that I could protect the top. Well, it didn't work. The finish on the top bubbled up because of the heat and the runner shrunk and got stained. I was sad about that, but dealt with it by covering up the top all the time.

Then about a year ago I noticed that the buffet had these strange circular dark spots all over the front. I took a drawer to Four Chairs and asked about it. The nice girl there told me that it was because it was pine and pine should never be finished in white because the acid in the knots will always eventually show through; they should have explained that to me when I ordered it. She suggested I refinished it in a darker color. But I didn't want a darker color. The walls in my dining room are navy blue and the rest of the furniture is wood; I really liked the contrast of the white.

She said that they really wanted me to be happy with my purchase for a lifetime so she offered to order a new buffet in maple and have it finished the way I wanted, she would take back the pine one (which she could refinish in a darker color and re-sale) and I would just pay the difference between the cost of pine and maple. Amazing! I was so happy! What a great business!

She also suggested that when I got the new one I could tile the top, thereby making it heat resistant and easy to clean.

Last Saturday I took a tile class at Home Depot and then applied my newfound knowledge to tiling the top of my new buffet. I still have one more step to do ~ sealing the grout, but I have to wait a couple of days.

Here's the beautiful result:

One More Wall to Paint

A few years ago I went to the Parade of Homes and saw a dining room in a most beautiful blue color, a soft Windsor blue. I determined that I must have a wall that color in my home. So I painted an accent wall in the exercise room.

Later, I used the same color in the Nanna/Gram room downstairs.

Last year at the home show I saw a bathroom painted the most beautiful terracotta color and determined that I must have a wall that color in my home. But hadn't yet figured out where.


I painted my office walls blue

and it felt like there was

too much blue!
(I know, you can't believe I said that)

The blue in my dining room (Enchanted Blue) and my bedroom (River Run Blue) and my office (Blue Mountains) are all on the same card in the paint deck, so I like that they blend with each other. But the blue in the exercise room didn't blend with the others upstairs.

I got my terracotta wall!

Michael's New Toy

Michael convinced his Dad that he "needed" a dirt bike to ride.

One benefit is that it has brought my three sons closer together, since they all love motorcycles and have worked together on Michael's new toy.

I remind them to always wear a helmet because "I don't want to change your diapers ever again!"
Once to a customer on that service!

Saturday, October 10, 2009


I didn't start out doing labels for my blog posts. I realized later that I wanted to and so during the last week I have labeled all 278 posts on my blog! I know it doesn't change anything for you, my dear readers, but I have done it nonetheless and I'm feeling good about that.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Finishing Touches

Today I put some finishing touches on my office:

I got this frame with dried flowers between two pieces of glass at the Hobblecreek Boutique today. The frame was black, so I painted it white, and while I was at it I painted the picture frame and accent above it. I think the white looks better on the blue wall.


I also got the third panel for the valance which looks better a little fuller. And I added the iron "flourish" over the window. I got it at Rod Works; it was brown, so it also got a coat of white paint.

And this is what my desk looks like with my new laptop. I'm really happy to join the portable world of the laptop computer, and my desk is less crowded, too.

I'm really pleased with my new space!