Sunday, February 22, 2009

A Funny Video

Another House Enhancement Project

Ruby was not happy about things being torn up. Today he spent the entire day after we got back from church with Jonathan. Jonathan is his security blanket. During the construction or deconstruction activities yesterday, he would just sulk around and scowl at us. Maybe he liked the carpet more than we did...

 I decided Saturday morning that I was finally up to tearing apart my house again in hopes of enhancing it. Over a year ago I bought the hardwood flooring to do the entry way stairs and hall. It has been since sitting out in my garage waiting patiently for me to do something with it. Jonathan and Sarah were both big helps in getting the old carpet, pad, nails and staples out. Jonathan is a hard worker and helped me do a lot of the work on the cabin and house in Oregon. Sarah also likes to jump in and helped a lot until she had to leave for a study group. Isaac (our 4 year old neighbor) came over and helped pull staples and haul pad and debris out the front door. We rewarded him with peanut better cookies and a glass a milk. He loves to work and comes over whenever we have something going on and wants to know what he can do. Around dinner time we had to take a break and go get some Mexican food at Casa Del Rey in Grantsville. Later in the evening we had to take a second break and go get hot fudge sundays at McDonalds. I was able to get the floor started. After a few slats I put too much pressure on my staple gun (special gun for this type of flooring) and broke the alignment bracket (I guess it wasn't design to keep a person of my stature from falling over - aah the difficulties of age). After some quick research on the internet we headed down to Home Depot to buy some Gorilla Super Glue. It promised me in their add that it would provide a workable bond within 5 minutes. Well, they were right. I was able to work until my back told me to quit. I guess all the work took a toll on me. After church this afternoon I took a four hour nap. I guess I will piecemeal the work the rest of the week to finish it up. It is going to look really nice when it is done. It looked so nice getting the nasty carpet off the stairs and out of the hall we commented that we should have done that back when we bought the wood and it would have been better than living with the carpet all this time.
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Winter Refuses to Give In

 Winter is still with us here in Tooele, Utah. Spring teases us for a few hours or maybe even a day and then the snow piles up again. This morning as we left for church I noticed the primrose and Pasqua flowers starting to bloom. They have beautiful blossoms that emerge even before the crocus. I'm waiting for the snow to melt of the back patio to I can see if the Helleborus is starting to bloom. But even as we had a beautiful springlike day today, The forecasters are telling of more snow falling tonight.
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Prom Time

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Sarah was asked to the Tooele High School Junior Prom. The young man, Micah, decorated her room and left her letter to unscramble to find out who he was. I took her on an extended driving practice while Micah and his friend, Jaret, did the room up. It was fun to watch her surprise. I could tell she was really excited in her cool, calm and collected manner. We were on the internet almost immediately looking at dresses and jewelry. This is exciting to see my daughter done up as a princess and going off to the ball. Last year it was held in the Capitol Dome. I haven't heard the specifics for this year yet, but it is the second Saturday in April. Not much time to prepare.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Six Happy Couples

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This is the picture from Sarah's "Girl's Day Dance". They certainly are a stunning group of kids. It is so fun to get pictures like this. What a great time in life to see your children continue to grow and mature and begin their adventure in life. The young man, Micah, that Sarah took asked her to the Junior Prom. So we have feverishly begun Prom Prep.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Elder Gibby Wednesday Update - February 18, 2009

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Jared is loving Gadsden, Alabama. The following is an excerpt from his letter today:

"WOW!!!!!!!!!, This week has been great!!!!!! We had 2 investigators at church, Connie Brown and Candy Burns. It was Candy’s first time coming to church. She was able to come with her motherinlaw who is an inactive member. Candy’s husband is in Afghanistan for a year. So both of them came to church and really loved it. We are going to teach her the Plan of Salvation this Friday and are really excited.

"Last Thursday was multi-zone. It was really awesome. I played the piano for it. That was really fun. I guess I’m one of the best in the mission. I don’t think so but I enjoy playing. Thanks mom and dad for all the time and energy you put into me learning the piano and paying for lessons. I will forever be indebted to yall. Yall are the best parents ever!!!! One of the speakers at the conference is a CEO for a investigation/spy firm up in Hunstville that works for the government. He taught us how to reduce our differences by mirroring them physically as well as speech and tone of our voice. It was really interesting. I felt like I was in training to become a spy or something. It was way cool.
Thursday night we played basketball. We play every Thursday night. It is really fun. It’s a killer though, afterwards I’m exhausted. Oh, side note, I broke 6 feet, I am now 6 feet and a quarter. Yea, but still not taller than dad. I’m working on it dad, don’t you worry, I’ll be taller than you one day, even if that means you have to shrink more. Haha jk.

"Friday night we had a great lesson with Phil Williams. We were able to give him a church tour Monday and it went really well. His entire family is actually LDS but he never joined. He lives by himself now and is divorced. He actually has 2 prosthetic legs so that was interesting. The church tour went really well and he loved it. We will be teaching him again this Friday and hopefully he’ll come to church. I’m really excited for that."

I am certainly proud of him as a missionary. He has continued to maintain an extremely positive attitude which can be seen in the success he has in each area he serves in. It is hard to believe that he has been out for almost 10 months. With each month the time goes by faster.

More Excitement

Sarah did it! She passed her driving test and now is a fully-licensed (under 17) driver in the State of Utah. She was excited to pass because now she will be able to drive herself around to prepare her response to the prom invitation. It cost me a day of vacation but it was well worth it to have the memory of taking my daughter to her driving test. I thought I would be able to sleep in this morning, but being the efficient and conscientious young lady that she is she scheduled the test early so that she wouldn't miss very much school (she even went to school for her 7:00 class).

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Great Excitement at Our House

Sarah was asked to the Prom tonight. How exciting! I think her mother is every bit as excited as she is. We had to immediately go to the online stores and start browsing prom dresses. We only have one princess so she is going to look like a princess. The young man decorated her room (while I practiced driving with her for an hour - a good excuse to see what homes were on the market). I can tell Sarah is really excited even in her controlled and calm fashion.

What a Beauty

 I certainly have the right as a father to be proud of such a beautiful daughter.
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Sunday, February 15, 2009

Sarah's Big Date

Sarah went to the Tooele High School Girls Day Dance on Valentines Day. She asked a young man, Micah, who is in her physics class. She went with a group of 5 other couples. Aren't they a handsome looking group. Sarah's dress was beautiful and I must say (unbiased of course) that she was absolutely striking. The group went to one of the girl's home to play games and watch a movie earlier in the day. Then they came to our house at 5:30 for dinner. We had spaghetti, salad, french bread and cheesecake for dessert. Everybody appeared to have a good time. After dinner and getting a mild case of hypothermia taking pictures outside, everybody went home to get ready for the dance. They all met again at our house and we were able to take some more dance pictures. At about 11:30 they arrived at our house again for a light dessert (icecream and cake). It was fun to host the kids and everybody seemed to have a really good time. They are all such a good group of kids. I am so glad that Sarah was able to make such outstanding friends when we moved to Tooele. (Actually, all the our children made top notch friends when we moved here.) I have to admit, though, that it is kind of emotional as a father to see your daughter dressed up so beautifully on the arm of another young man (they are just friends - but isn't that how it starts). Just another year and Sarah will be off to school and it will just be the three of us here. Well, I digress. Life is good and yesterday was fun and left us with great memories for years to come.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Girl's Day Dance

 This is Sarah and her date for the Tooele High School Girl's Day Dance. We had twelve kids at our house for dinner. It was a blast.
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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Gardening Fever

I have started to receive the yearly spring gardening catalogs at home and online. With each catalog I am more ready for winter to end and the 7 months of digging in the dirt to begin. To be quite honest, I actually enjoy mowing the lawn and pulling weeds. Sherrie was complaining last night that I am watching too much TV. Well, when the weather is more accommodating and I can spend time in my yard, I don't watch any TV (well, very little). Today at lunch I went through one of the online catalogs that I received and picked out the flowers that I want to add to my garden collection. I have enough of the staples, that I am trying to find that special new flower that nobody else around me will have. I am making my list early so that when my favorite nursery opens this spring I can take my list and see if they will be stocking any of them. I once tried ordering plants out of catalogs. I received small, barely alive stock (some of it was actually dead) and I don't think anything that I planted survived. I found that buying my plants at the Tooele Valley Nursery has given me a 100% success rate and he tries to carry some of the specialty plants. I really like all the varieties of echinesia that are being developed. They have such beautiful blossoms, bloom so profusely and last for a long time (and they are drought tolerant). I noticed that my wisteria had started to leaf out before our last snow. The leafing was high on the vine so it should have made it through the winter okay. I always worry about the plants for the first couple of winters while they are getting hardened. But, as I stated in a previous blog, the winter thus far has been very good for the plants. The ferns on the side of the house didn't even die back all the way. I understand my Grandpa Gibby's love for his plants and flowers. I could see myself retiring and never leaving my house again (scary) because I need to care for my gardens. Sherrie has talked about putting a small playhouse in the backyard. If I do that I will have to take out my small vegetable garden. Although I wouldn't be that heart broken. I've grown quite a few tomatoes and squash, I just have harvested very many of them. It probably would work better to have the tomato plants in plants next to a cute playhouse. I wonder if she would let me keep the lawn mower and other gardening items in the playhouse... I doubt it. We keep driving past one that she likes. I told her I would build it for her. I don't think she trusts me because she says should would just like to buy the one she sees. I think it will be more expensive than she realizes. I will likely be building a playhouse with a porch swing this summer. It will look nice with the flower gardens around it.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

The Groundhog was Right

It appears the groundhog was accurate in predicting six more weeks of winter. I have been greeted by a blanket of white yesterday morning and this morning. I got my hopes up to early for spring gardening. This is good weather for the gardens with the moderate temperatures and the wet snow. I will just be trapped in the house for a few more days. On the positive side, it is a good excuse for planting myself on the couch and watching American Idol tonight.

Monday, February 9, 2009

BYU Near the Top

BYU is ranked second as "most popular college" based on a yield rate (percentage admitted that enroll). I knew there was a reason I went to BYU (besides the scholarship they offered).
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Sunday, February 8, 2009

St. Valentine's Day Pix

After church this afternoon we decided to get some early Valentine's Day pictures. Aren't they a handsome group of kids!

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Garden Update

Today was a nice day. It was a little overcast and drizzled occasionally, but it was warm enough that the snow was melting. I ventured into the backyard - which I found the neighbors cat has been using as a litter box all winter (I guess snow is like kitty litter)- to check on my gardens. This has been a great winter for the gardens. It hasn't been bitterly cold unless there was snow protecting the plants. I found my azaleas big and full with lots of buds. My crepe myrtles did not die back to the ground which should make them hardier next year. A number of the perennials are already starting to sprout up. My cherry tree appears to have made it through the winter (I was concerned because we transplanted it in the fall). The snow this winter has been really wet so all the ground is wet and the plants aren't dehydrated. I am excited to get out into the hard the start cleaning up the gardens. Hopefully by the end of March I will be out there.

Ruby is a Good Cat

Jonathan thought he would have some fun with Ruby. He is such a gentle cat and will let Jonathan do anything to him. So Jonathan wrapped his head up with Britney's scarf (sorry Jared). Ruby just sat there and then let us even take pictures of him. To take it further he put the hat on Ruby. He still just sat there. I think he liked the attention. I have never seen a cat that will put up with so much.