About Me

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I love Jesus. I love my family. I love photography. I love books. I love thinking. Probably in that order. I have a wonderful husband, five beautiful daughters, a house, and a camera. I enjoy spending time talking to my husband, playing with my girls, redecorating my house and shooting things with my camera. In my spare time, I sleep.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

My Grandpa

Last Friday, my family and I stopped by the nursing home to visit my Grandpa & Grandma. Grandpa sat in his chair smiling at my kids and complaining about how muddled his mind has been lately.  He held my new baby and asked me to remind him of her name.  Yesterday, he stepped out of his bed and into heaven.

I was Grandpa Hoar's first grandchild.  I like to think that I was his favorite.  I never knew my Grandpa to work. He had retired long before I was born to stay home and care for my Grandma who suffered with agoraphobia and couldn't be alone.  He always sat in his chair in the corner of their trailer house kitchen.  He was reliable in that.  Look through old photos or watch any of our old home videos and that is where he was...always sitting in his corner.  He was a heavy smoker when I was very young...but quit cold turkey after almost dying with a burst appendix.  He replaced  his cigarettes with hard candy--butterscotch discs, cinnamon discs, root beer barrels--and I could always count on him to sneak me a piece if I'd ask.  He'd steal a hug and I'd bury my face in his cotton button up shirt and sniff in the smell of his cologne, then he'd reach up behind his chair into his "special" cupboard and give me a piece of his candy.

I had so many special times with Grandpa Hoar.  I think fondly of the Thanksgiving Eve's I spent the night at their house and sat over the heater vent by his feet and the summer evenings sitting together on the porch swing eating chunks of Colby cheese.    I remember sitting in the back seat of his car while Grandma ran in to the grocery store.  And every time I had my hair up, he'd grab my pony tail, lift it up and make a farting noise!

Before his mom was moved down to be closer to all of us, Grandpa used to drive up to her house in SD and mow her lawn several times each summer and when he did my mom & aunt would often spend the day with Grandma.  If we were lucky, Grandpa would let my cousins, siblings & me go with him.  We would ride under the topper in the back of his pickup all the way there.  And then we'd let great grandma spoil us with treats and spend the rest of the time getting in his way.

Grandpa also used to spend a lot of time outside in his shed.  We'd arrive at the trailer and stop to say 'hi' to Grandpa who was sitting just inside that old shed listening to the radio, before we'd head inside to see Grandma.   I don't know what he did out there all day besides listen to the radio but I assume it was his way of having time alone.  His shed was filled with his "treasures".  I'm sure some would label most of it junk but as a kid I always found his tin cans full of trinkets intriguing--probably because he rarely let us look at any of it.  He'd grump at us if we messed around in his shed.  When I was around jr high age, I went hiking with my best friend and found a piece of bark off a tree and I carved a message in it for Grandpa about how much I loved him and I brought it home and gave it to him.  He hung it up in his shed with his other treasures and for years and years he would remind me that he still had that bark hanging in his shed.  That's how I knew how much it meant to him and how much I meant to him.

He was a collector.  He had a hutch along one wall of the living room filled with his collection of cologne bottles shaped like cars and trains and all kinds of things.  I loved it. I loved looking at it. Once in a while Grandma would open the glass doors and show me some of the bottles up close.  But mostly they just were for admiring behind glass.

He was a stubborn man.  He hated hospitals and he refused to answer the phone.  If he dug his heels in, you may as well give up.  He developed a relationship with Jesus privately which he and Grandma nurtured at home because he would not go to church.   I only remember seeing him in church a couple times as a kid--when he came to see us grand kids in the annual Christmas program.  My mom said, "He's coming because of you."  Whether it was true or not, that always made me feel special.

I remember listening to he & Grandma argue.  They would yell and call each other names...kinda like Frank & Marie on Everybody Loves Raymond...but it spite of all that gruffness on the surface, Grandpa was my grandma's biggest defender.  I always knew--you mess with Grandma--you're messing with Grandpa!  One time in particular comes to mind when Jordan, Ryan and I were staying with them and at dinner we started singing a song about eating worms and Grandma was getting quite upset with us...which only made us laugh harder.  In the end, Grandpa was the one who put a stop to it.    I interviewed them on video several years ago asking them about how they met and fell in love. The best part was his description of what he thought when he met Grandma for the first time--"Mmmmgawa!"

As a child, I didn't really think much about my relationship with him.  He was always there.  He was grumpy and would threaten us with the belt if we got too out of hand (although I only think he used it once and it wasn't on me).  But he was also always quick with a piece of candy, a hug & a smile.  As I got older--I spent more of my time with him playing Shang-Hai or talking about my kids.  He seemed to soften more and more as he got older and his love for his great-grandchildren was so sweet.  In his last couple years he loved to tell everyone how he'd sit every morning with his cup of coffee and look at the pictures of all the grandkids on his refrigerator and say each of their names.   He did this everyday and he'd tell us every time he saw us.

For me--the thing I'm going to miss most are the hugs.  His big fat, scratchy beard, sweet cologne hugs where he'd hold me so tight and laugh and say "I'm not gonna let you go."  And often I'd say back "You don't have to.  I want to stay right here forever."

I'll miss you Grandpa.  Enjoy your new home.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Cute things my kids have said: Part 12

It has been over a year since I last posted one of these!!  A YEAR!  Wow...so here is edition 12 of cute things my kids have said.

1/9/15  Trying to explain that the color of a country on a map does not reflect the color of the actual place. I showed the kids a map of the US. "Is Wyoming really purple? Is Nebraska really yellow?" Jasmine: (with a mischievous twinkle in her eye) "Nebraska is really red." #huskercountry  :)
wink emotico#‎huskercountry‬

1/14/15  Eden: (after her orthodontist appt) "My teeth feel like soldiers." (Because they are so stiff.)

1/17/15  Eden: "Mommy, do you know what inflexibility is? It is invisible flexibility!"

1/17/15  Jasmine: "Mom, why are you pulling the hairs out of your face? They're just going to grow back while you sleep."

1/21/15  Jasmine: "I get naked when I go number two."

1/23/15   Me: "You guys didn't get any of your homework done." Jasmine: "At least we were playing and using our imaginations instead of being on technology!"

1/26/15  We could hear the bass in the car next to us...discussing what it sounds like, Acacia says, "Or maybe God stomping his foot on the earth."

2/16/15  Eden was pouting because I told her to go work on her homework...I was talking to Acacia who had asked me a question. I answered, "partially." Acacia: "what does 'partially' mean?" Eden(in her pouty voice): "It's a vegetable." And then she started laughing at her own joke.

3/11/15  Kira: "I see the moon, Mommy!" Me: "What? Why is it there during the daytime?" Kira: "it's stuck!" Me: "What should we do about it?" Kira: "Climb a tree?"

3/11/15  Jasmine: "I don't know what it's like to have a brother but I'm pretty sure it's not fun. It's not that I don't like boys..."

3/27/15  Earlier tonight Eden mentioned that she had a sore throat. Jasmine says to her, "Don't you wish you were a bee? Then instead of talking you could just dance!"

4/26/15  Me: "Kira, how did you sleep last night?"
Kira: "I'm wearing Jasmine's shoes."
Me: "That doesn't answer my question."
Kira: "Yes. It does."

5/4/15  Kira was sitting with me at Acacia's violin Sprouts lesson watching intently. I turned and asked her, "Do you want to learn to play the violin?" Kira answered, "No. I'm gonna play my harmonica."

5/13/15  Overheard this morning after Jasmine reminded Eden of something they had planned to do together... Eden: "That was the nighttime me. This is the daytime me and I'm too tired!"

5/17/15  I asked Kira where her shoes were. She answered, "I took them off. My feet are full."

5/19/15  Used my vehicle's rear wipers today...Jasmine: "Oh! So that's how people's back windows make rainbows of dirt!"

5/24/15  After our recent party I have punch & 7-up in the fridge. Kira: "Mommy, can I have some 8-up?" (She was talking about the punch!)

5/27/15  Kira: "Mommy, my shirt has sneeze on it."

7/3/15  Yet another thing I never imagined myself saying, "Kira! Do NOT eat your shoe!"

7/3/15 Kira (about the fireworks): "That scared my ears."

7/26/15  Eden: "I want to go to Target and sniff the clothes!"

8/12/15   Today the girls & I were talking about how hard it was to teach Eden to read and how Acacia basically taught herself. Eden said: "Teaching me to read was like teaching a squirrel how to dance!" Acacia: "And teaching me was like shaking a tree branch."

8/22/15 Kira: "Daddy, I'm ready for my piggy bank ride."

9/16/15 Kira (after I told her not to do something): "I know it's bad but I like it."

9/24/15 Eden while trying to tell us where sushi is made: "I forgot what the other China was called."

9/30/15 Eden: "Utah is like a giant chocolate bar with one of the squares eaten off it."

10/13/15  I asked Kira if she felt any different now that she is three. She said, "Yeah, my teeth feel bigger."

11/6/15  I asked Kira why her baby was naked. Her answer: "Because she has no clothes on."

11/19/15   Jasmine: "Sometimes I use the cc cards when I'm multiplicating."

11/27/15  Kira: "I'm scared of animals. I'm scared of dinosaurs and puppies. But I'm not scared of cats."

12/2/15   Kira scraped her finger earlier today and I put a band-aid on it. Just now she came to me because she wanted a new band-aid. I asked her why she took the other one off. She told me, "That band-aid was having a bad day."

12/25/15. Kira to Russ who was wearing sunglasses on his head in the house. " I told you to quit it with those glasses!"

12/31/15  Kira: talking about having boobies "But they hurt." Me: "No they don't". "But you're going to have a baby and that hurts. I'm guessing."

12/31/15  I threw something at the trash and missed and gave an exasperated sigh. Kira: "it's okay. You can pick up when you get out of the bath." Me: "But I'm pregnant and can't bend easily so you're going to have to do it." Short pause. Kira: searching her body with her hand. "But my back hurts."

1/6/16  Kira found a bottle in bathroom and asked me what it was. "Lotion". "Will it die me?" "Only if you eat it." "So I can put it on my hands but if I put it in my mouth it will die me?"

1/14/16  Kira was looking in the mirror and I heard her say , "You don't respect me!" Then she came around the corner and said to me, "The Kira in the mirror doesn't respect me."

2/1/16  Kira peed on the kitchen table.

2/12/16  Just overheard my kids singing 'Happy Birthday' to Abraham Lincoln.

Friday, January 15, 2016

Books I read in 2015

Books I read in 2015

  • 01) 'A Study In Scarlet' by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle 1/15
  • 02) 'The Sign of the Four' by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle 1/19
  • 03) 'The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes' by Sit Arthur Conan Doyle 1/22
  • 04) 'The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes' by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle 1/29
  • 05) 'The Hound of the Baskervilles' by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle 2/3
  • 06) 'The Return of Sherlock Holmes' by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle 2/12
  • 07) 'Interrupted: When Jesus Wrecks Your Comfortable Christianity' by Jen Hatmaker 2/18
  • 08) 'His Last Bow' by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle 2/24
  • 09) 'The Valley of Fear' by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle 2/28
  • 10) 'The Casebook of Sherlock Holmes' by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle 3/8
  • 11) 'Matched' by Ally Condie 3/9
  • 12) 'Crossed' by Ally Condie 3/12
  • 13) 'Reached' by Ally Condie 3/14
  • 14) 'Own Your Life' by Sally Clarkson 4/23
  • 15) 'In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day' by Mark Batterson 4/24
  • 16) 'Operation Tree Roper:An Eye Above' by Robert A. Polk 5/5
  • 17) '100 Ways to Motivate Yourself: Change Your Life Forever' by Steve Chandler (audio) 5/17
  • 18) 'Soul's Gate' by James L. Rubart 7/18
  • 19) 'Memory's Door' by James L. Rubart 7/20
  • 20) "Treasure Island' by Robert Louis Stevenson (audio) 7/22
  • 21) 'Call the Midwife' by Jennifer Worth 8/11
  • 22) 'Spirit Bridge' by James L Rubart 9/3
  • 23) 'Under the Never Sky' by Veronica Rossi 9/10
  • 24) 'Through the Ever Night' by Veronica Rossi 9/12
  • 25) 'Into the Still Blue' by Veronica Rossi 9/17
  • 26) 'Armada' by Ernest Cline 9/25
  • 27) 'The Scent of Lilacs' by Ann H. Gabhart 10/6