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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

2010 Flu Season

Have you heard that the 2010 flu season took a walk on mild side? It all started with a pandemic threat, long lines and shortages for vaccines for the H1N1 flu. But yet, it didn't turn out to be hardly anything - didn't it?
I wonder though...... Did we have a mild flu season because people took precautions?

By.....
Washing their hands more....

By....

Sanitizing their homes and being cleaner?

I know this makes a huge difference in getting sick. Here in our house, we really never get sick. Brady has had perfect attendance at school for years. He never gets sick.

Me?? I never really get sick either. Last year I felt colds coming on a couple of times - but never got anything. I haven't been sick to where I miss work for years and years. Actually, I don't have time to get sick and I am certain a large part of willfulness goes along with me not getting sick.. Because I won't allow it - ha ha!

Every time my boys have started to cough - I always tell them to "quit it!! "  It's not allowed here in our house - LOL! I tell them to wash their hands more!!

I really feel that cleanliness is a huge part of being healthy and I suspect it is why 2010 flu season was mild. People were scared of the H1N1 and took precautions - resulting in a mild season.

I've been really lazy about doing cleaning posts. I've had several requests - and I am letting you know that I'm getting back to business and will be posting some more cleaning posts within the next few weeks.

Stay tuned and wash your hands.. :-D

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Wayback Wednesday

I decided to do a way back Wednesday today. Here is a picture of my childhood family.
Back row: my oldest sister; Christine, My Mother, Zoey, and my other older sister; Cindy.
Bottom row: My big brother; Lyle, my little brother; Richard and me; Sondra
How cute were we? Richard and Sondra... The babies of the family. 
 Look no teeth... Sondra and Richard. We always had a flocked Christmas tree while I was growing up. My mom always made us Christmas pajama's.
My cousins lived in North Dakota and my Uncle Glen was a dentist. We summer vacationed in North Dakota and let Uncle Glen take care of our teeth. One time we returned back to Idaho through South Dakota and visited a place called Bedrock Hills - the Flintstones.

Richard, Bam Bam and Sondra

Here we are as teenagers (Richard may not be a teenager yet). On a trip back from North Dakota we stopped in Yellowstone to appreciate the grandness and beauty there. It's always a beautiful place to visit.

As you can tell, we are very close brother and sister. I love you a bunch Richard! Well... I should say that I love my whole family, but there is a certain closeness we had as the babies.  

Scentsy

A while ago I won a Scentsy warmer - isn't it pretty?
And I won 3 Scentsy scent products.
I've enjoyed these products and wanted to get some more. They are $5.00 each through Scentsy. However, I would have to find a local distributor. So much work to replenish my stock.

But while I was shopping at Walmart, I found they sell products which work in your Scentsy warmer (they also sell warmers). Woo hoo!
The best part is they are $2.00 each verses $5.00 through Scentsy. Oh, the frugal girl in me has decided this works great for me at a savings of $3.00. They smell great and works just as well as the Scentsy products. I actually just LOVE the plain vanilla bean without the spice flavored vanilla from Scentsy. I LOVE the Oatmeal cookie smell too!

I'm LOVING that I can go to the store and purchase it without a dealer. I must confess, I'm not much into home parties and going out of my way to purchase things from a dealer. I prefer stores - with no pressure.

Just thought you'd like to know! *Ear to ear grin :-D*

Monday, April 26, 2010

Motivational Monday - "A tribute to Mother"

A tribute to mother
By David Sanders

We are currently seeking applicants for a divine role in the work force. Very little experience is needed, as you will have complete "on-the-job" training. Must be willing to work 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Patience is a must.
We will start you out doing some heavy lifting and carrying for about 9 months after which you will be asked to suffer extreme pain for a few hours.
You will then move on to the "parent" part of our program, where you will teach, nurture, and care for little children.
After they have become independent, you will be on call for the rest of your life to rescue burning chickens, save loads of laundry, lend a listening ear, etc.
Pay is minimal, but the eternal rewards are priceless. Men need not apply, as they have not the skills needed for such a job.
Mother's Day is May 9th. Don't forget to give lots of love to all the mother's around you!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Shawn Goes to the Temple

I love the temple!

Wednesday morning as I was getting ready to head out the door to work, my sister Christine called me and let me know that Shawn (her son) was going through the temple that evening and invited me to come along.

Shawn was too excited to go through the temple, that as soon as he had his recommend in hand, he wanted to go. He received it Sunday.

The temple is closed on Monday. Tuesday he called and scheduled to go through on Wednesday, April 21, 2010.

Usually, you schedule your first visit to the temple when all of your family or relatives can be there (like on a weekend). But Shawn was too excited to wait. He is such a valiant man.

This is my busy week and Wednesday is a busy day - I had to hurry to be present on this special occasion.

I made it and as I watched Shawn in the temple, I could see the spirit of the Lord shine through him. The excitement to serve the Lord and to be called one of His own. He has such a great heart and has the "I want to be good" attitude. I really admire him and the joy that comes to him in keeping the commandment and striving to live a good life.

I watched him and he seemed so young. He reminded me of a Primary child excited to be baptised. Excited for that day to progress in the Lords kingdom. The light shown from him.

It's always exciting to be with family in the temple. The temple is a holy place, a place of love and beauty. It's a place where I feel close to Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ.

I'm thankful for the temple. I'm thankful for the happiness and knowledge the gospel of Jesus Christ provides me. I'm thankful for families. It was a wonderful evening and I'm happy that I was able to attend the Temple with Shawn as he prepares to go on a mission. I'm proud of the man he is.

As a side note, the flowers were beautiful at the entrance of the temple. Spring tulips, daffodils and spring flowers every where. Gorgeous!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Earth Day

I am a non-believer of global warming. I believe our earth renews it self. I believe our earth goes in cycles. I do not believe that when I drive my car that I cause the icebergs to melt. I don't believe in all of the hype.
I think earth day is to cause us to PAY MORE for products. I believe it RESTRICTS us from getting oil off of our own shore. I believe it is a way to CONTROL us.

As far as green cleaning products --- I don't believe in them. In fact, I believe that as people move forward with using green cleaning products we are setting ourselves up in a prime condition for a pandemic. I believe in using good cleaning products and I happen to like the smell of clean. I also do not believe in homemade cleaning products. They may have been great back when people lived on farms and weren't living in city conditions. I think that the commercials for green products are ridiculous -- just another way to control minds. Who doesn't like a good clean smelling home that is clean?? One of the biggest compliments I regularly get is that my home smells good. Everyone says, "your home always smells so good". That is because I am a clean freak - LOL!.
Will I ever use green cleaning products - even though they are made by Clorox.. NOPE!

I do believe in being responsible and taking care of your environment. I don't litter and I try to beautify my yard and surroundings. But, I say DRILL for that oil. It is there for our use. But do it responsibly.

I am not a green freak. I will never be.. But... happy earth day to you! I think the world is a beautiful place created for us by Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. It is magnificent. I really enjoy it's beauty!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Seedlings

It is rewarding to watch planted seeds grow into flourishing plants. Everyday I eagerly await as they pop through the soil and start to grow.
This was a picture taken last week as they slowly started to grow.
This week the tomato plants are looking like tomato plants.
I was worried about the bell pepper plant. I thought it was a dud for sure. But yesterday there was a plant and today their are two.
The celery plants are tiny. I hope they will bring me celery this year and hopefully I didn't' get them planted to late. Well see what a month does to them before I plant them outside.
The broccoli plants are the fastest growing plant of the bunch. They may over take my kitchen window soon.
It took a while for the peas to find their way out of the soil. I think it took those nice warm days to help them warm up the soil and encourage them to peek out and find the sun. I have 4 containers full of pea plans. I'm can hardly wait until I can open a fresh pod and eat some fresh peas... hmmmmm can't wait!

I worked in the yard over the weekend and ended up getting a blister in the palm of my hand. I hate blisters - especially when you clean houses for a living. It seems to be healing. The yard is looking wonderful. I'm loving the signs of spring!!
My lilac bush is going to be covered with flowers this year. I don't believe I've had so many flowers covering the bushes - ever. I can't wait until they are all in full bloom. It's going to smell heavenly.
I was worried about my bleeding heart bushes. They had frost bite from the cold a couple of weeks ago and the blooms were withering away. But due to the beautiful weather last week - more blooms appeared and they are growing bigger every day. You know a bleeding heart represents the blood our Savior, Jesus Christ shed for us. I always remember him when these plants grow each spring.

I love Spring!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Sometimes You Feel Like a Nut

The other day while Brady and I were watching TV, a commercial came on for Almond Joy and Mounds. During the commercial I started singing:

Sometimes you feel like a nut
Sometimes you don't
Almonds Joy's got nuts
Mounds don't.

Brady started to laugh and laugh. He'd never heard of this jingle.. It was a giggle fest.

Where did all the cute jingles go? Commercials these days are weird and some are just wrong. I'm not into all this shock value commercials they have now. I still don't understand or even like the Burger King "King" commercials - it gives me the heebee jeebees - I always wonder what the executives think... do they think we enjoy those commercials?? Weird!

Here is a throw back jingle for Almond Joy and Mounds - when commercials were good.
Beware.....when shared with the younger generation .... it may start a giggle fest! LOL!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Motivational Monday - "The Kite"


The Kite
Author Unknown
How can we be free with so many rules and commandments to obey? A simple story will illustrate the value of such guidelines.
A little boy and his dad purchased a beautiful kite. Never having flown a kite before, the little boy was excited. The day was perfect. They found and open field. They wound the ball of twine around a stick so the boy could hold on to it, and then they ran, pulling the kite behind them. Finally the wind caught the kite, and it started to fly.

Then they stood still, holding the kite against the wind, and letting out more string. The kite responded by ascending higher and higher. It was exciting, and the little boy was delighted.
After a long while they came to the end of the string, and as they watched the kite, now only a tiny speck in the sky, the little boy suddenly said, "Let's let it go. I want it to be free. I want it to go higher and higher, clear up to Heavenly Father." The dad replied, "It doesn't work that way, son. If we let it go, it won't go higher. It will fall instead." The little boy didn't believe him because the tension on the string made it seem like the string was holding the kite down.
To demonstrate what would happen, the dad opened his pocket knife and handed it to his son. The little boy cut the string. In moments, just moments, the kite lost control. It darted here and there, down and down, and soon they had to walk a long way even to find it, a broken heap on the ground. The little boy couldn't understand. The string had seemed to be holding the kite down. But it wasn't. The string provided an anchor for the kite, without which it lost its ability to fly.

Like the little boy, some of us mistakenly assume that commandments, rules, and values restrict us -- that if we were only free of them, we would be liberated. The truth is, the guidelines provide the discipline that will ultimately lift and guide us to our Heavenly Father. Without the commandments, we would be left to drift aimlessly and eventually crash in a broken heap. As we develop personal, private, religious behavior in the form of prayer, scripture study, service, church attendance, and obedience, we strengthen ourselves against sin and accumulate the power we need to be victorious in our war against Satan.

"Therefore, cheer up your hearts, and remember that ye are free to act for yourselves--to choose the way of everlasting death or the way of eternal life." (2 Nephi 10:23)

Friday, April 16, 2010

High Speed Internet

During a visit with Jason and Sharon last week, we were discussing movies they had seen. They pulled up the trailer on my computer for me to watch. It kept buffering and buffering, which I thought was normal because my computer always is slow and buffering when I watch videos.

They asked me what speed my connection is through Qwest. I pulled out my bill and saw that I was paying for 1.5 speed. They went to this site called http://www.speedtest.net/ (a free service) to see the speed of my Internet was. I was only at .4 or .5 of speed - very slow for what I was paying for.

I called a Qwest tech support person and had her figure out why I wasn't getting the speed I have been paying for (for at least 4 years)..

We found out the culprit was a telephone filter. Yes, both of these filters were on the line BEFORE my computer connection was plugged in. This was causing my slow speed.
We took them off and plugged the line directly into the slot. Woo Hoo! High speed Internet.
Not a pretty connection (the old telephone on the wall outlet)..

I can't tell you how happy I am and how fast everything is. I can now watch a news story or a YouTube video without all that buffering.

The sad thing is that I've paid for high speed connection for years and didn't get it.

If you have Qwest Internet, check and makes sure you don't have any filters on the phone line before your computer plug in. It will slow the connection down.

I'm loving my computer lately... Loading photos into my blog is faster and easier. Life is great without all that waiting.

Needless to say, I'm thankful for Jason and Sharon's visit and their knowledge.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Out with the Old and In with the New

Last week Brady came to my room after taking a shower and told me we didn't have any hot water. Oh great! My water heater is broken.... I have been waiting for this because it has been really really hot water for a while and I knew that wasn't a good sign. I had it repaired last year and here it needed another repair this year. I decided I would just replace it.

Later that morning we had hot water again - so that meant that it wasn't completely broken, it was probably just one element because it ran out really quickly. I called the plumber I like, Allen at Cloverdale Plumbing and scheduled an appointment. He couldn't do it until Tuesday morning because he was finishing up a re-model. That was fine, we could limp by with half a water heater. It was challenging for my teenage son who has to take a 20 minute shower-LOL! I remember those days - what a waste of time and water. Now I'm in and out in 5 minutes. Brady didn't like it one bit that he had to hurry his shower process :-D.

I ended up taking Tuesday off of work and he arrived later then expected at 10 am. It also ended up being another plumber Andrew and not my regular guy Allen. After showing all the weird stuff in my house built in 1900 with no foundation and built on boulders - yes it is true. Showing him the terrible crawl space under the house - ugh - I wouldn't go down their with all the spiders--eeeek!

We went through a couple of scenarios to finger out what to do to get my water heater up to code or up to date with the current laws. It had to have a drain pan and a drain line to take the water out of the house if it ever leaks. We looked at moving it to the room where the heater is and out of the wash room in the center of the house. That option would have made a lot of re-plumbing which equals extra cost.

I decided that I would keep it where it was and do the upgrades needed. Here is the new water heater in my wash room. PCB pipe for the drain and a draining pan at the bottom.
While I had a plumber here under the house, I asked if he would bring my turn off valve for the water system of my house up out of the crawl space, so that I could turn it off in the case of an emergency. Which I've had -  water running from a busted pipe and I couldn't turn off the water - and there was NO way I was going to crawl under the house - eeeeeek!

So, I had him bring the turn off valve up to where I can turn it off with ease. You can see it at the bottom of the water heater by the gold pipping. Yeah this totally makes me happy!!
Because my water heater is in the middle of the house, it would have been quite a big deal to have a drainage from the water heater to the outside of the house. We discussed just draining it through the drainage from my washer. He put in a new professional box for my wash water outlets and had both the water heater and the washer drain into the same drain. It worked out great and now it looks professional - I should have taken a before picture to help you understand how wonderful this is.
I love getting updates to my house - a little at a time. Next I really want a water softener. I know!! I don't have one - and need one. Maybe this summer.

I'm thrilled that everything is new, that I have a turn off valve for my water supply and I'm good for quite a few years - in a new Water Heater! Yeah!

 It was a long day - Andrew didn't get done until 4 pm. Brady was out of school (for Senior projects) and was on the computer all day. I was bored - with nothing to do but watch TV... It's weird to be sitting around all day twiddling my thumbs. I made bread, cookies and watched TV while I waited for my new water heater ..  It was a relaxful day!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Recipe: Fried Rice with Ham

More Ham recipes -- chuckle!! This is my sister Cindy's recipe. It was pretty large, so I cut it in half. You can double this recipe and will have the original amounts from her recipe... but there is only two of us - so of course I try to cut it down.

Fried Rice

Hot cooked rice: (2 cups hot water, 1 cup rice, 1 teaspoon salt - bring to boil, turn down to low and simmer for 14 minutes)

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 cup diced celery
1 cup diced carrots
1/2 small onion diced
1 cup diced cooked ham
1/4 teaspoon ginger
2 eggs slightly beaten
salt and pepper to taste

In large skillet, heat the oil and saute' celery and carrots until almost tender.
Then add onion and cook until tender.

A cool trick that I tried: I had some extra onion left over from a recipe. I placed it in a freezer bag and froze it. I pulled it out and used it in this recipe and it worked great. I am going to use this trick more often. I sometimes get frustrated when I have an onion go bad or have to put left over onion in my refrigerator (smell) - but no more.. I will cut it up and freeze it before I have another onion go bad. Yeah saving more money and not wasting food! AND it's already chopped and ready to go!
Salt and pepper to taste. Add the ham and warm.
Then add the rice and sprinkle the ginger over, mix thoroughly. (in the middle of my rice is the ginger).
Make a ring around the skillet with the rice mixture.
You can add more oil (I didn't) and scramble the eggs.
When eggs are done mix thoroughly with the rice.
Add soy sauce or you can let each person add their own. I just added it to the whole dish and if they wanted more they could add more.
Ta DA!! Ham Fried Rice. Really good!
I decided to chop up some more ham and freeze just for a fried rice recipe. Usually when I have frozen ham in the past, I never use it and end up throwing it out. Maybe with a purpose in mind for it - I will use it (most definitely).  This is the last of our Easter Ham - all used up! Yeah!!
Good thing I purchased 2 hams while they were on sale at Easter time. Now I can torture Brady again soon when I cook the other ham... (MaWa ha ha ha ha the evil mother *wink)

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