Grand Canyon rescue….

The first time I went to the Grand Canyon, it was on a college geology trip in 1995. The Grand Canyon wasn’t very far from home, but we’d never gone as a family; so I signed up to take a $20 college day trip with my sister and best friend.The time of the year was May and the trip to the North Rim was not a guarantee because the North Rim closes for the winter. When we got to the desolate washboard sand and dirt roads and they were dry, we kept on going. We had a lot of fun that day with our packed lunches and me telling my sister to not get so close to the edge!!! I am also the YOUNGER sister. ūüôā This week, a college in Northern Arizona decided the unseasonably warm dry winter of 2014-15 was a good time to try out their back country class skills; low and behold, a rescue had to take place. This is what one guy commented:¬†“Survival knowledge and preparation means: Cell phones, extra batteries, training in long distance dialing.”¬†My guilty pleasure is always reading the comments on internet news. I particularly enjoyed that one. LOL¬†

Finally snow, but not in Oregon.

My brother sent me some pictures of a foot of fresh fallen snow in Southern Utah. I love a snowstorm!¬†While I was mowing my lawn yesterday, (unseasonably early) it was also snowing on places that shouldn’t get snow. (Las Vegas, Dallas, etc.)

On another note, I have been thinking about whether or not to try for tickets to see the WAVE¬†¬†next month when I go home. I ultimately decided that it’s not worth it to me to drive so far. The backyard of my youth was like an unknown national park so maybe I’ll post hiking pics from there. ¬†The official national parks weren’t far either. One of my school friends’ complains regularly¬†about saving the lives of hikers in his newly discovered backyard. ¬†It’s okay, he’s strong as an ox and usually friendly. ūüėČ ¬†Just don’t forget to bring your h20!

I don’t want to live in a world without sledding……

Ok I am seeing this on MSN this morning and as usual our modern litigious American society is just dumb.


In 2010, our family got a real shock. My husband got diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. We had 3 young children and my husband was the sole provider for our family. The shock of discovering that MS is a very expensive disease was a second shock. For the first time in my life, the life of the disabled opened up to me. I had lived my life generally unaware of physical limitations due to other forces than laziness. I come from a background where eighty year olds own and run businesses; so, we’re pretty physically healthy. Also, we are Mormons so doing healthy stuff is usually par for the course. Today, we attended a family day at OMSI ¬†for Multiple Sclerosis. It was a morning of information presented by a psychologist about how to cope with this illness and an afternoon of fun discovery at the museum. There were people in various stages of the illness with their families. ¬†We were lucky to have gotten a diagnosis at a time when they were making great medical advances for MS so we have not had to deal yet with disability, but it has been an education and an at times unpleasant adjustment. If you have a healthy body, you are a lucky person.

So many friends doing awesome things…..

Yesterday, one of my friends announced on facebook that Random House will be publishing her first novel in 2016. She posted about how it was the realization of a lifelong dream. Now, lots of people want to publish a book, but I met her when she was getting her Ph.D in English at Penn State University about a decade ago and she was willing to do hard things. She is now an English professor in my hometown in Utah and put raising children as her first priority, but didn’t give up on her dreams. ¬†It was really exciting news to hear! Another one of my friends that I spent a huge part of my childhood with is a skin care expert. She has a lot of famous clients in New York City, but eventually made her way back to Utah. She has overcome a lot of challenges in her life and she is doing awesome things. I know some people feel bad about facebook and it is truly mundane A LOT, but I have had real in the flesh reunions due to it. Also, it is just amazing for those of us who lived life without these things to know what happened to so and so……. ¬†This is my friend the skin care expert.¬† ¬†Ironically, both of these women have beautiful RED hair. What a coincidence!

Dallas Fort Worth and then Dallas Love Field

A few weeks ago, I made some flight bookings that will be taking me through Dallas. YEE HAW! I spent a lot of my summers in San Antone growing up out in the countryside and I know and love that area pretty well. However, I’ve never been to Dallas beyond DFW. While I wasn’t intending on going there other than the airport, I am now going to be spending about 18 hours there due to a goofy flight situation. I booked a flight from DFW to PDX on Southwest airlines and unbeknownst to me, it changed the flight to DAL which is a different airport. It’s actually quite a fluke that I figured it out too. Had I not figured that out beforehand, I may have had a meltdown at the airport. : Where is my GATE????……..”You’re kind of dumb aren’t you ma’am!!??” Since I never enjoy sweating bullets about catching flights, I had actually left a fairly large window, but still I now had to go across Dallas to catch my flight home. Since my flight was booked with Southwest points, I discovered I could change the flight for FREE ¬†and the points price had dropped too! WIN-WIN with my stupid oversight. I then decided to just depart the next day so I could enjoy a hot afternoon by the pool or some tourism.

It’s Valentine’s day so you can justifiably eat junk…..

I am a coupon/discount fan. I will probably not go somewhere unless I can use a coupon/discount. Travel hacking is sort of like using coupons for travel fanatics. Some people take it to the extreme (like this week) and don’t leave any product on the shelf for others. COOL¬†I’m no extremist like that! ¬†So, yesterday we bought some donuts for Valentine’s day. I had a buy 12 get 6 free coupon. Since there are only 5 of us, that seemed like too many. In fact, it nauseated me to buy that many since donuts don’t freeze well and only taste good fresh. Anyway, I almost reconsidered, but didn’t. Low and behold, the junk food you consume makes you feel yucky. On another note, I almost practically haven’t had a soda since I decided not to for my new year’s resolution.

Too many donuts consumed -1 point —-almost no soda in 2015 +1 point Total: 0 points

So if you happen to randomly read this post today, just consider yourself forewarned to the pitfalls of getting your favorite chocolates. ūüėČ If you will be posting on the facebook account for bitter single people on Valentine’s day, go out for a walk instead you’ll benefit far more.

Walk after play a thon

Yesterday, my middle school daughter played her trumpet for 12 hours for a school band fundraiser “play a thon.” Last year, I talked her out of it and only allowed her to play for 5 hours. She was very determined to go for the full 12 hours this year so I gave in. She made it and managed to not be carried out on a stretcher, along with many other awesome youth and an amazing band director. When I was the same age and for many years, I was involved in many different music performances; but my stamina never would have lasted that¬†long. She earned a shirt from the event and many tickets to buy cherished junk food. These days kids get shirts for every event they participate in, but this shirt was earned from hard work. Her lips were swollen and her arms hurt, but I made her walk with me since she decided to wake up early on her no school day. We had a good time in the fog. Getting out of the pajamas was not a requirement for my companion, but I at least threw on some work out gear.

Blooming already???

Blooming in February???


In case you couldn’t tell since the day after Christmas…..

valentine's day

             SUGAR TIME

It is almost¬†Valentine’s day! ¬†The first Valentine’s day after I got married in the year 2000, my husband decided not to get me anything; rather he was just a guy and couldn’t have cared less about the day….. After I spent the day working and every other girl got sent a dozen roses to our office, I was pretty mad. I didn’t marry Don Juan, but JEEZ! He has since learned. My own father once gave my mother a box of Valentines’ chocolates that his adult niece dropped off for him at his office while he was out. As an average American dude who’d been married for a LONG time by then, he hadn’t thought twice about the holiday, but he then regifted the chocolates to my mom. A few weeks later, my cousin asked how were the chocolates? That is how my mom found out he hadn’t really remembered. It was really funny though! So, I already did my duty and sent my mom a card in the mail yesterday. Today, we had an after school cookie decorating party. On my watch, I only allowed the children to consume 1 cookie so as not to get sick and the plates were to be taken home.

Not fast food, but EASY gourmet BEEF


Wicked good beef

¬† I ‘ve never been much for recipes, but I’ve been cooking for probably 30 years; mostly, I figure stuff out. I was raised on beef from the butcher and my family flies in beef and lamb for me from our home property in Utah when they visit. Sunday dinners were grand affairs. If you spend 3 hours at church, ¬†you need a reward. ūüėČ ¬†How do you make great beef? The slower you cook it, the better. ¬†This beef was cooked in a cast iron pot in the oven on 300 degrees for about 6 hours. Cover the chuck roast (this one is just from Albertsons) with Lipton onion recipe soup & dip mix, pour h20 on top until it covers the beef about 1 inch high for a piece of meat that fills the pot about 2/3 full. You can substitute a bit of the h20 for red wine. It makes the best and most mouth watering beef. Also, the leftover beef makes the best sandwich meat. The carrots were also thrown in the pot. I normally throw in potatoes and onions too. It is so easy that I didn’t make it today, but took 2 seconds to tell my husband to do it cause I was busy. It was awesome! Try it!