Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Agent Bishop

Read a great book the other day.  It is called Agent Bishop by Mike McPheters.  He was an FBI agent for over 30 years and a bishop four times during that time.  It is a compilation of stories from his career and so interesting!  He talks of family life and trying to find balance but most of the book is spent in telling the stories of his different experiences during those thirty years from drug busting, to solving murders on the Indian Reservations in Oregon, to ending the standoffs with cults.   The book was enjoyable and so very interesting by seeing the inner workings of FBI.   He throws in a zinger at the end of being in Washington DC on Sept. 11 2001 by the White House....well I will let you read it to find out what happened.  You will enjoy it if you like real life adventure, even if you don't you will enjoy it.

I also started his 2nd book about the Mexican Drug Cartels but I didn't finish it as it was too graphic for me especially since we are living in Arizona part time.  It is a very hard book to read not that it is not written well but that there is that kind of violence and secret combinations going on right here, right now in our own country.  Heidi told us that there is a park up in the mountains that is closed now to the public because it is too dangerous for anyone to go to because of all the drug and human trafficking going on up there.  He talks about that in his book,  how we are now allowing the drug cartels to take a little piece of America away from us and how we need to stop it before it is too late.  Very interesting but I couldn't finish it as it was too intense.  But do read "Agent Bishop" it was great!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Our Grandchildren Are Growing UP

Our grandchildren are growing up in more than just age.  Ezekiel turned 12 Wednesday and today he received the Aaronic Priesthood.  You will also note he is taller than Grandma.  The forecast last night was rather ominous and we wondered if there would be Church today.  We live just a few block south of I-90 and the forecast was 6 to 15 inches of snow along I-90 and north and 6 inches south of I-90.  It was supposed to start after midnight but it did not start until about 6 AM for us with sleet and freezing rain followed by huge snowflakes.   At 8 AM it looked like Church might have to be canceled but it wasn't.  We arrived early which was good as there was lots of snow to remove.  I got my exercise for the day with 20 minutes of snow shoveling along with Gunnar, Qatar and Zeke.  The four of us managed to get all the walks cleared.  I also got thanks from those who did not have to tramp through the snow.  David was the only speaker today as the other two were snowed in.  He gave a great talk on forgiveness and then after Sacrament Meeting he conferred the Aaronic Priesthood on Ezekiel and ordained him a Deacon.  Ezekiel then came home with us for a quiet day together.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Minnesota Fun

When we left Arizona temperatures in Minnesota were in the negative digits.  It didn't seem right leaving the warm 70's but the plane was packed so we weren't the only crazy people.  For a week we took care of our grandchildren while Lisa and David vacationed in Atlanta.  I don't know how Lisa does it - Eileen and I were on the run constantly starting at 6:15 AM taking Gunnar and Qatar to Seminary. 

Thankfully by the end of the week, the weather warmed into the 40's and one day in the 50's.  That did not last long and we are back to highs in the 30's.  I also got to help Amanda by being a judge for two Science Fairs which was quite interesting.  We are now back in our house and somewhat restricted on our activities with no car and ice everywhere.  Amanda also had me judge another Science Fair this week but then an unexpected judge showed so I went to work on some of her many school projects. 

Line up for our balloon creations
Then last night was the Banfield Elementary School Carnival.  Lisa picked us up at 4:30 PM to help her set up as she was doing balloon creations.  Little did I know I would be blowing up hundreds of balloons and making swords and octopus balloon creations.  We started a little before 5 PM and a little after 7 PM Lisa called an end to making balloon creations even though we had quite a line up.  All of our hands were very sore as it was non-stop blowing and twisting.  Lisa provides all the balloons and equipment free to the carnival so the school gets a good return on her donation.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

One Happy Baby

One of the blessings of our short stay in Arizona and being so close to Heidi and Doug is babysitting these little ones.  Friday night Heidi put Zoey to bed before she left but within a half hour she was up and by about 2 hours she was wanting her Mommy.  Even with wanting her Mommy and having a cold too she was still able to give us lots of smiles and cooing (shame I can't get better pictures).  Then today at Church we were sitting two rows behind Heidi's family as there was no more room on the row.  Roxie finally couldn't take it anymore and ran back to our row and jumped in my lap and hugged me for the longest time - she was not going to let go.  How can anyone resist all that loving!!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Quick and Beautiful

The first picture is the kitchen when we bought this townhouse.  It didn't look too bad but the garbage disposal had leaked and the sink cabinet was a mess, storage was very limited and there were only 3 drawers, so I was going to put in an IKEA kitchen like I did in our other townhouse.  However after putting together a couple of IKEA furniture pieces, it became apparent I can no longer put together another kitchen due to carpel tunnel.  Thus the challenge to find a quality kitchen at an IKEA price.  On Monday we ordered cabinets, on Thursday a non-profit group came and removed the old kitchen cabinets etc. and 7:30 AM Friday the cabinet installer arrived.  The install was completed at 2 when the granite installer arrived to measure. Monday they installed the granite followed by the plumber and by 6 PM we had a complete kitchen.  Yes there are a few items yet to do like painting, new light fixtures and new outlets to better blend with the granite but those are ease items to finish the job.

Thursday morning after a very quick removal of the old kitchen.
Instead of working on the kitchen today though, it was ceiling painting day for the living room and dining room.  The previous owners were not very careful while painting walls and the entire perimeter of almost every room has wall paint on the ceiling.  It is amazing how much nicer the rooms look without the wall color smeared on the ceiling.
Early Tuesday morning - there is no blue paint in the house.

Tuesday morning