Friday, August 29, 2008

YAY college football

I love college football - I really do. I'm glad we are playing football pick 'em this year. I'm a little bit uneasy about my picks because I agreed with the experts on our site. That doesn't seem like a good omen.... we'll have to see. GO DUCKS and COUGARS and UTES.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Time out for Women

For those of you who don't know - Deseret Book plans a few events around the country that bring some of their favorite authors and musicians to different locations for those who can't get into Utah for BYU women's conference and education weeks.

For the first time, they are coming to Anchorage. We are so excited - I'm more excited than Alicia because I've been wanting to go to the other events, but haven't been able to. Anyway - it is next weekend. About 25 women from our ward are going up. Alicia and I are going up the day before so I can rest and not be too tired from the trip. Also, a lot of the women are rooming together, but we are staying in a different hotel - again, more for my health than for any other reason. It will be much quieter and restful.

Almost all of us are doing a temple session together on the morning before the conference - looking forward to that. We are a close ward and it will be like a giant family temple session.

The speakers that are scheduled are Sheri Dew, S.Michael Wilcox, Emily watts, and Ardeth Kapp. I can't remember the rest - these 4 are 4 of my all time favorite authors and speakers, so I am really psyched.

Two other events that weekend we are looking forward to is that a REALLY good friend of ours moved to Anchorage last year and they wanted a baby so badly and they were suddenly chosen by a young woman to adopt her baby - and we are all sooooooooo excited to see the baby and share in the joy. I actually think that the baby has not yet touched a piece of furniture or bed - I think she has been held since she got home from the hospital . :) We love the blog, Amanda.

And the other event is that our Alaska Permanent Fund checks are coming out a month early - it is one of the largest checks they have ever issued AND our governor got us all an energy rebate. And it is all coming to us the week after we are in Anchorage, so we can spend it while we are there. YAY !! Giant shopping trip !

It will be a full week - but lots of fun and spiritually and emotionally upbuilding experiences.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Our Olympic moment

I somehow got to see the synchronized swimming team competitions - I missed all of the duet competitions. One funny moment for me was when the male announcer asked the expert how anyone would get into this sport and I tried to think back to how this all started.

I remember as young girls - probably still in Medford - where we spent a lot of each summer at the public pool - I remember us trying to do synchronized moves where we would sit down on the floor of the pool together and have pretend tea parties (you would probably call that the tea party manuever) and we had moves where we tried to do hand stands at the same time and hold them the same amount of time... It was long before we ever watched Olympics and long, long before the sport was invented. I wonder if someone saw us and used that inspiration to invent the entire sport. WOW - what a legacy....

Back to reality - Earlene - I'm thinking hydraulics made out of soy - water soluable like those packing peanuts that dissolve in water?? We could line our suits with them and as we swam, they would dissolve and when they checked us after the meet - we would just have regular suits..... I don't know if the dissolving would create a cloudy residue in the water? We could work up some kind of threshing motions in our routine so that people would think the water was frothy from our exertion..

Just a thought or two - I really don't want to think our competing days are completely behind us... What am I supposed to do with all those cases of gelatin for our hair?

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Who needs boys, anyway ???

This morning Alicia went out to walk the dog and our good neighbor, Bruce, came over and said that the remains of one of our chickens were over in their back yard - just feathers. Justin and Brian had to work today so Alicia went out by herself and rebuilt the entire wall and roof of the chicken pen almost all by herself (I went out and held stuff and gave important direction and critic). She did a really good job.

We have been talking about how we used to build stuff and do things without waiting for the guys to do it or start it and today, she just took the initiative and did it.

My part came when it was time to round up the chickens. Whatever took the unfortunate one scared the others half to death and they were scattered ALL over the neighborhood. We still don't have a back fence because of the septic tank rebuild so they have had free rein all over the place. They've never sought shelter under the neighbors steps before, though, so it was a bit of a challenge.

They usually come when I call them - usually when we feed them goodies from the kitchen, I go out to watch, so they associate my voice with goodies. So Alicia got me a container of scratch and corn and I lured as many as possible into the new chicken yard. I took my walker in and just sat there and called them and threw out bits of corn. We got about half of them that way, I think Alicia went thru the trees and herded them about 12 times - but finally the turkeys and most of the chickens were in. At one point even the goose came in - he hasn't had corn for a long time and he wanted his share. He didn't want it bad enough to actually stay in there with me, but he thought about it...... We gave him a bunch in his feeder now that the chickens and turkeys aren't eating his food. The final chickens got herded in with the hose.

They settled right in. I fully expect to have a couple dozen eggs in the morning. There is no way these chickens are not laying yet - they are all fully mature when you get up close to them. They apparently have been laying out in the trees where we couldn't find them. We'll let you know.

So Good One on Alicia ! ! Girls ROCK ! ! !

Friday, August 22, 2008

Sandhill Cranes

We all had some questions about the Sandhill Cranes earlier this summer and this week there was a very informative article in the local newspaper. If you want to read the whole article the link is:

The males are called roans and the females are mares. The article says that the roans are usually bigger, but the only way to tell is when they do their "unison call" - the roan lifts his beak to the sky and the mare lifts hers to a 45 degree angle. ???

Like I have time to sit around and wait for them to call in unison to tell which is which. Anyway, it also said that in captivity they can live to be 84 years old, but usually only 40 in the wild. Plus they mate for life and return every year to the same land. Except sometimes, when they are young they get divorced and then later usually return to the first mate, but sometimes not...

I liked where it says that if they are angry at people they will throw sticks at you. I have been trying to remember if we ever saw this behavior, but I don't recall if we did. Usually we watch them from a window or the porch, so they don't feel that threatened.

We believe they did have a chick this spring, I can't remember what the article called the chicks, but we think that stupid eagle got it. He just flys over our neighborhood like we are the drive-thru of a McDonalds or something.
Hope you enjoy the article. Love, Charlotte

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Thanks Joanna for getting us started

Joanna has been really good on Weight Watchers for about a month now and it has got some of us going too. I really appreciate her efforts to get us all going. It is good to have support and encouragement from each other.

So, I started last week. I dropped a medicine that was puffing me up and that dropped 4 pounds last week and I made a concerted effort to stop eating the junk food that I have been surviving on this summer and yesterday at my weigh in - I had lost another 4 pounds.

I also have been tracking my sugars better and actually doing something about the numbers, not just writing them down.

the other thing I have been doing is getting up at a set time (actually 8:00 in the morning) which is really hard for me, as Brian will tell you, my heart actually does not even start pumping until after 10:00 - so for 2 hours every morning, I'm just walking around without a heart beat - but I think it helps me to be more active. I can't work-out like others do, but just being more active will help lose the weight.

I see my doctor next week, so my goal is to lose enough that he won't yell at me for how much I gained this summer. My reasoning was that I was going to have surgery and so I could gain some weight and the stuff they took out in surgery would counter-balance the weight gain. OOOPS. *nervous laugh and red face* That was probably a stupid plan.

Good luck Earlene, on your weigh in.

Alicia is having a hard time finding good foods to eat since she can't eat dairy or fish and we don't have fruit and veggies up here that are readily available. We'll have to do some research to help her. (She has lost 3 pounds, too - yay).

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Catch of the Day

Silver fishing has been kind of slow but I caught this whopper this morning. My friend from St. George Utah is here fishing with me for a week. Lot's of fun!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Tomato question

I have seen ads on TV for the Topsy Turvy Tomato cage that grows the tomato plant upside down. since we are gardening in such a limited space, I wonder if anyone has used them? Our tomato plants were stunted this year - there just wasn't room for them to expand.


Sunday, August 17, 2008

some corrections on the tag

My loving sister pointed out an item in my tag that I need to clarify - being my sister, I would have thought she could have cleared this up, but she didn't, so I will....... Yes, I have been married for 30 years, but no I'm NOT OLD. I was a VERRRRRYYYYY young, child bride. My husband, on the other hand, is indeed, older than dirt.

Secondly, I do appreciate Earlene's support that the thinking part of the meal is the hardest part, despite what Alicia and Brian said in the comments.

Thank you. Charlotte

Friday, August 15, 2008

Tagged by Laura

How did we meet?

Brian and his friend, Tom, moved into one of the apartments in my four-plex. My friend, Becky, had lived in an apartment house in town when Tom lived there. Tom didn't have a lot of female friends ..... he wanted them, he just didn't have any. (No offense Tom). So his birthday was February 21 and he invited Becky and I up to his apartment to celebrate his birthday. Brian was playing poker with his good friend, Stan Terry, in the kitchen. He didn't even look up when Tom introduced us all and he and Stan stayed in the kitchen while we had a beer with Tom and then left. As that semester in school went on, Brian and Tom would help me start my car and empty my mouse traps and mow my lawn.

Where did you go on your first date?
Brian invited me to be his date for a picnic all the law enforcement class were having to celebrate their graduation. He dumped me and Blake at the "wives" table and he went fishing all afternoon. Then he took us home and he left and had another date with someone else.
Our second date we went to Walla Walla and picked strawberries and made strawberry jam.

How Long have you been together?
We just celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary on July 22. We met and first got engaged 35 years ago, but we broke up for almost 5 years before we got married.

Who eats more?
Definitely charlotte, sorry to say

Who said I love you first?
Absolutely no clue

Who is taller?

Who sings better?

Who is smarter?
The smart answer would be to say my spouse, but I think we are each smarter in different areas.

Who does the laundry?
Brian does now, but I used to.

Who does the dishes?
Again, Brian does now, but I used to. You have to watch him when you are cooking, you just set a spoon down and whish, it is either in the dishwasher or washed. He is really speedy.

Who sleeps on the right side of the bed?
I never know the answer to this - is it the right side when you are at the foot of the bed? or the right side when you are lying in bed on your back?
If you are at the foot of the bed, I'm on the right. But if you are lying in bed on your back, Brian is on the right.

Who pays the bills?

Who mows the lawn?
Brian or Alicia or Justin or a neighbor kid if we have one

Who cooks dinner?
We prepare dinner as a team = Brian and Alicia cook most of the time now, I try to plan the meals and make sure we have all the ingredients (I think the thinking up part is the hardest, so I'm usually too tired to do the cooking part, hehehe). I used to cook, but Brian is a really good cook and was famous for his baking before we got married.

Who drives when you are together?
Brian always drives in the country and Charlotte usually drives in the city = but Charlotte doesn't drive very often any more

Who is more stubborn?
ummmm, that would probably be Charlotte

Who kissed who first?
Probably mutual

Who proposed?
The first time, his sister and a friend of mine worked together and he had gone home and told everyone that he was going to marry me and she told my friend and my friend told me. At the same time, I had told my friends and family that I was going to marry him. So his sister, Jenny, had us both over to dinner and said if we were planning to get married, we should probably talk to each other about it. And from then on, we were engaged.

Then we broke up and 5 years later, I moved in with him and I knew we were going to get married, but he says he didn't. then i was having horrible nightmares and my therapist said it was because I was doing something I knew was wrong and that I had to fix it to stop the nightmares... so I said I had to move out and he said, well, I guess we could get married if we have to. And I said I wasn't going to get married because we had to. I wanted to get married because we wanted to and he said he guessed he wanted to. it was very romantic :(

Who is more sensitive?
everybody who knows me knows that Charlotte is the biggest cry baby in the world. Saddest movie on earth: ET

Who has more siblings?
Brian has 5 and I have 2

Who wears the pants?
Brian wears the pants, but I'm the boss. hehehe

We tried to divide up the kingdom a couple years ago to keep things running smoothly and we decided that I am queen of everything inside the fence and he is king of everything outside the fence. But then the fence blew over, and Justin keeps using it to build stuff, so I don't know who is in charge anymore.

When we first got married, our bishop told us that the man is the head of the house and is the final say in all decisions, but the wife is the one who determines what that decision will be. You hear people tell that as a joke, but he was serious. He taught us that a woman has so much power in the home by her attitude and her demeanor and way of handling things, that often she can influence the decisions more than her husband knows. But at the end of the day, Brian is the head of the house.

To our daughter, Christine

There is a new show advertised on TV , called the Locator, and the very first time I saw the ad for it, my heart caught in my throat and I said, "OH MY GOODNESS, this show is going to scare Christine." and every time I see a promo for that show, I think the same thing.

SO - for the record, Christine, please know that we are not going to send somebody to hunt you down. You will never open your door to find us or anyone we have sent to stalk you.

We feel so blessed to have had that contact we did with you; to know that you have a loving, LDS, family; that you have beautiful children and a loving, supportive husband. We respect and acknowledge that you are sealed to your parents and your brothers and we do not in any way wish to interfer or barge into your relationships with them. They are your family. Please do not worry that we are going to try to usurp them in any way.

I assume you google us occasionally - doesn't everybody google everybody anymore? - anyway, You are more than welcome to follow all our blogs and get to know us - you can comment on them if you like, or just follow them from the outside. There are probably personality traits and quirks that you will identify with and realize where they came from by reading the blogs. From Thanksgiving thru January, we all try to post every day on the Family Christmas countdown blog - it is lots of fun.

the links to the right of my post are mostly family - Tiff & Brett, Carlos family, Jones family, and Katzoffs are friends, but I think everyone else is family.

We all send you our love and wishes for a happy, healthy life - and please don't ever worry that we will try to track you down and push ourselves into your life. Love, Charlotte

Monday, August 11, 2008

Why do we watch ?

I always hope that the days of crooked scoring in the Olympics is behind us, but after watching the men's teams tonight, I think we can safely say that China obviously had someone in their pocket. This was the biggest bunch of crap we've seen since the french and russian judges were exposed in team figure skating. HOW disappointing. grrrrrr

Friday, August 08, 2008

The 20th Century arrives in Anchor Point

I can't find a camera so don't have any pictures right now..... but today is finally the day we have all been waiting for. We are putting in a REAL septic tank today. You know the tank we have now is a wooden "crib" that is 15 years old. As most of you are aware, wood rots when it is exposed to moisture and age . . . . . I don't know the official life span of a wooden sewage crib, but I'm gonna guess it is about 10 years. Wait, that makes ours, um, way way dead. hehehe nervous laugh

Justin's boss ended up not renting or loaning us his equipment, so Justin and Alicia are making 3 trips up to Kenai to rent equipment and 3 trips back to return it when we are done, frowny face on his boss..... but Dibble Creek Rock was nice enough to run over with 6 loads of rock - 3 for the sewer and 3 for the driveway, and the pumper guy from Homer Pumping was willing to drop everything and run over and empty the current tank for us..... Very nice of both of them since we didn't have any time warning that this would be the day we needed to do this.

I don't know that I will take pictures of the gross part, but I was planning to take pictures of the piles of rock and such. I'm hoping that Justin will be able to dig the pond a little deeper, too, so that it will stay wet longer in the summer to support the wild ducks that want to raise their young here.

Also, Marpro called Brian back to the dock today . . . but when he got there, they had just dropped their giant cable spool into the bay and were busy with divers and cranes trying to fish it out, so they weren't ready for him yet. He is supposed to work at the high school tomorrow for the first football game of the year. busy, busy, busy

Justin's company went on a weeklong fishing charter but didn't catch a single fish. He's got some great footage of walruses and sea lions or something - it will be a day or two until he has time to upload the footage. While he was gone, Alicia painted their apartment. It is very cool expresso colors - very hip and chic.

Okay, I'm done... just had to share the excitement that we are going to have a sewer system. dumb I know, but HEY this is country life.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Some sanity returns

Well, as usual, I jinxed the money train by coveting the new Tv and Satellite dish... the cable barge has left dock. They had another project for Brian to do, he told them they could get the items at a store for much less than having him making them from scratch and they said, oh no, we want you to custom make them...... but then they priced out the metal and said WHOA ! you're right, we can buy those a lot cheaper.

So today we were looking out the window around early afternoon and here he came into the driveway and he is done at the barge for as far as we know.

For now he is thinking about going back to work at the school - just the high school for half time for now. He had an offer to spend half day working at the artistic, alternative school, also, but
we were also trying to decide if he should just stay home and do welding work all the time.

but his boss at the high school had an idea for brian to work 8 hours on Friday and Saturday nights and 4 hours on Thursday nights. That way he will have 4 days to weld and fish and such. and he gets to keep his medical and pension. We are thinking this sounds like a really great idea and of course, if they put his full-time hours back, like we all know they will - then he is already on track to work at the high school.

I probably jinxed this too now. It always seems as soon as i mention something in the future, it doesn't work out. anyway, just wanted to let you all know that he is done with the crazy hours for now.

So bummed today - we finally decided to buy some cabinets and such that we need. I have been looking for the right ones for weeks and weeks and finally, they had the perfect ones in the fred meyer weekend ad and we drove up there with JUstin's truck today and even had Brian's good wishes and permission to get these cabinets.

You know how you drive all the way to a store and they are out of that item and it is so disappointing and frustrating? We get to freddies and you won't believe this - but the ENTIRE furniture section was GONE !!! There was just this giant empty area roped off in the middle of the store. Everyone assured us it will be back together maybe as soon as tomorrow.. ??///@#$$ Like that is going to help us... sigh. so we got rainchecks . grrrrr

Oh well, it was a fun day anyway. i'll be glad when the fishermen go home, though, we are so sick of tourists and fishermen everywhere. it is a nightmare to try to shop in Soldotna during the summer.

OK end of rant. i'll post some pictures of the new cabinets that we did get from Penneys. I'm so excited to have reall furniture, not auction or yard sale furniture or plastic totes or plastic drawer units. It's going to be so FUN. Just a little diversion to keep my mind off the Olympics....... you just can't walk away from competion that is in your blood like this, you know... LOVE YOU, totally synchronized Charlotte

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Is this the year?

I'm somewhat conflicted about writing this blog after declaring earlier this year that I would not be attending the Olympics .....

I kind of feel that this is the year for us to petition the Olympic committee about adding a sport that is near and dear to my heart - INDIVIDUALIZED SYNCHORNIZED SWIMMING.

I think that individuals who want to be in the sport and don't have twin sisters, or feminine brothers, are really discriminated against. I mean, maybe someone is an only child and anti-social, should they be denied the right, nee, the privilege of representing their country in this grand sport ??? Is that fair? Is that what this country is all about?? Is that what the Olympics is about? Making poor children, who suffer all their lives from not having siblings, should we be singling them out and mocking them and denying them the great joy of standing on the top of an Olympic platform == just because their parents weren't as fertile as others?

I say, NO !! Do you even have any idea how hard it is to synchornize with yourself for hours and hours under water ? I can tell you, it is not easy. I think the individual synchornized swimmers of the world deserve a voice.

NOW THE QUESTION - is China really the place I want to start this protest. I know to not protest in Tianamin square - I'm allergic to tanks running me over... if I get arrested and shot, will one of you volunteer to pay the .89 cents for the bullet they shoot me with? Or perhaps should I wait for a more friendly place to protest and let the Tibetans take center stage in the protests this year?

Also, they have outlawed dog in all the approved restaurants (of course, you can still get donkey, camel and bugs), but no one is saying if cat meat is outlawed - and being a cat lover, I'm a little uncomfortable with that.

My Chinese is not so good and I might order it by mistake... Also, I have been feeling a little under the weather, if I'm unable to get to China who is willing to take my place and make our voice heard?????