We Seek After
These Things
Recently returned from serving the people of Honduras for 3 years

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Faith . . . is hard sometimes . . .

Man . . .

Life is rough . . .

It can be really tough sometimes.

I remember the day we had my little 8 and 7 year old nephew and niece over to play for the day, while their parents were out running errands.  They mentioned the 8 year old hadn't been feeling well,  and although he had had frequent fevers the last little while . . . they didn't think he was contagious.  I remember that awful, sick feeling when they told us the next day - the 8 year old had just been diagnosed with acute mylogeneous leukemia.  One day everything is rosy . . . and the next changed forever . . .

I remember the day when I was 8 months pregnant expecting our first baby, and my family had all traveled to Hawaii without my husband and I as I couldn't fly at that stage of the game.  I remember getting a phone call telling us that my father had fallen off a cliff and was in critical condition in a small Hawaiian hospital and they weren't sure if he was going to survive or not . . .

I remember the morning one of my best friends and neighbors called to tell me she hadn't felt the baby move inside her womb that she could think of for the last several hours . . . I remember reassuring her it was probably nothing but she needed to make a visit to the doctors to be sure.  I remember being overcome with grief for her as she learned her baby had passed away just days before her due date . . .

I remember being at work one night late and getting a text to pray for my nephew who had been involved in an auto accident.  I remember crying alone in a dark room and praying that his life would be spared, and not to take the life of a young 19 year old boy, just at the beginning of so many important forks in the road.  I remember jumping in the car to travel to his hometown with family to be there and support my brother and his wife and family only to learn he had passed away as we traveled . . .

I remember hearing the news that a beloved childhood friend was stricken with a brain tumor . . .

I remember just yesterday seeing the local news that two boys, brothers ages 14 and 7 had perished in an avalanche while snowmobiling in Utah . . .

I remember just barely reading a friends blog about the sudden and unexpected death of her husband and father of their two young boys . . . while far away from his home and family . . .

How does one even begin to get through the minutes . . . the hours . . . days, weeks and months that follow . . .

Only through Faith.

Faith in a Savior, even Jesus Christ, a healer of our souls.  Trust in a Savior who has suffered for our sake that during times such as these, we might still have hope.  The pain that we feel . . . he has suffered.  He has been there, been through it all, and can help us through.  

If we will exercise even a particle of faith . . .

Even with a knowledge that families CAN be together forever, we still suffer, and life is tough . . .

because sometimes . . .

Faith is hard . . . it is.

Life is short.

There isn't any time for disagreements, for hurt feelings, for pride, contention. There isn't time.

Never . . . . Never
 . . . Never

Take life for granted.

Learn more about Faith, our Savior, Jesus Christ.
You're invited . . .

Finding Faith in Christ

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

This . . . is Incredible . . .

I know that I have an appreciation for music that started many years ago.  I frequently reflect on my youth and my dad's love for classical music, and generally,  music of many different genre's and how that has influenced my life throughout my life.  

As a youth, inspiring me to pursue musical studies, as a mom, inspiring my children to pursue and gain an appreciation for many different types of music.  And looking back what a blessing it has been to my life forever.

Music touches us in so many different ways .  . . 

It's a way to express an aspect of our personal identity, helps us relax, helps us to manage our moods or change our outlook for the day or moment.  Frequently it wakes us up, makes us want to dance or sing, or soothes us when we're sad . . .

So I guess that's one reason why I find this  . . .

Incredible . . .

Landfill Harmonic movie teaser from Landfill Harmonic on Vimeo.

What do you think?

How has music been a positive influence in your life?

Monday, January 21, 2013

Why I like Book Group . . .

Most of the time we read the most amazing books . . .

But the truth is, most of them I probably would not pick up and read if it wasn't a selection decided upon by the "Book Group".  It's one of my favorite aspects of belonging to a book group . . . that everyone has such different taste in reading adventures, and it's a great experience to find a good book you wouldn't normally have read.

That's how I feel especially about our book for the month of February.

It actually appears to be kind of a long and difficult read . . .

by Candice Millard

And it is 432 pages.  I have been postponing beginning the read . . . I was feeling a little intimidated by the subject and length of the book.

It's described as -
At once an incredible adventure narrative and a penetrating biographical portrait, The River of Doubt is the true story of Theodore Roosevelt’s harrowing exploration of one of the most dangerous rivers on earth.

The River of Doubt—it is a black, uncharted tributary of the Amazon that snakes through one of the most treacherous jungles in the world. Indians armed with poison-tipped arrows haunt its shadows; piranhas glide through its waters; boulder-strewn rapids turn the river into a roiling cauldron.

After his humiliating election defeat in 1912, Roosevelt set his sights on the most punishing physical challenge he could find, the first descent of an unmapped, rapids-choked tributary of the Amazon. Together with his son Kermit and Brazil’s most famous explorer, Cândido Mariano da Silva Rondon, Roosevelt accomplished a feat so great that many at the time refused to believe it. In the process, he changed the map of the western hemisphere forever.


That I"ve started it . . . I can't put it down . . . it really is the most interesting story and it grabbed my attention right from the very beginning.  I'm finding it very inspiring and sparked my interest in Theodore Roosevelt . . . someone whom I previously hadn't found very interesting (shame on me!).

So if you're like me . . . and hesitate to jump into something outside your favorite genre.  I'm going to suggest you give this one a try . . . I highly recommend it!

You can see all the book on our 2012 - 2013 schedule at this blog post!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Photos - Townhouse on the Main

Once upon a time . . .

I set out to blog photos of our new townhouse in Highland Utah.  It's located at Toscana, an upscale townhouse community right in the middle of our new little town.  We moved all the way down the street from our previous home in Alpine.  About 3 miles . . .

So far . . .

We have LOVED living here!  The low to no maintenance is just what we are looking for right now. It's afforded us the opportunity to travel and spend time with our far away family members.  Especially now, it is very appropriate in our lives as we have some major lifestyle changes come up.

But . . .

I digress . . . I'm FINALLY going to blog some more townhouse photos!

Let's take a look at the main floor . . .

First a few statistics -
The townhouse is approximately 2000 sq feet, on three levels.  You saw the entry / office level last time around.  We have engineered solid hardwood floors on the first two levels.  The bedrooms and stairways are carpeted.

It' three bedroom, 2.5 baths . . .

Heading up the stairs now . . .

Don't mind the big black lab who follows me all around as I'm snapping photos . . .



At the top of the first set of stairs you'll find . . .



(haahaha - in a small place, the storage shelf under the coffee table is prime real estate :)  Just thought I'd mention that's where we store the favorite family games!  Ticket to Ride, Settler's of Catan, Qwirkle, Pandemic and the Logo games!  If any of you want to play . . . give us a call!!)

The collection of family quilts is noticeably missing . . . but no fear . . . they are still here in the upstairs linen closet . . . don't worry snugglers, we still have plenty of snuggling quilts available :)

townhouse 4

townhouse 10

Primarily . . . two of us live here with one big black lab full time.  Kelsie, the college girl comes home on weekends and during holidays.  And BTW has agreed "to mind the store" while we travel "out-of-town" to destinations currently unknown beginning in July for the next three years!  (You'll see the BEDROOMS, which includes Kelsie's super cute bedroom . . . NEXT TIME).

We love that the style of our home totally reflects us!  We have always love our European adventures and admired the cute European apartments we have been privileged to stay in.  We're fortunate that thrifted, inherited, refurbished, DIY, and vintage are all in style right now . . . as that pretty much describes our decorating style to a tee :)



townhouse 1

We've inherited lots of precious-to-us treasures big and small from family through the years, and love that we have found a place to incorporate most all of them.  They remind us daily of our family history, the valued qualities of family members we hope to carry on and pass down to our own little family.

The wood floors and beams incorporated into the home were high on our priority list.  Also the brick wall really adds to the atmosphere we're trying to embrace.



townhouse 14

townhouse 13


townhouse 12


I'm really quite pleased we've been able to hang onto our dining room table throughout the years . . . it's the same dining room table we all ate dinners around on special occasions as I was growing up.  We've since add the toile table cloth and glass top to make it more practical for our needs.  The piano, also is the same piano I grew up playing, and now my daughter enjoys it on visits home.  We all enjoy her playing on her visits home!  But I must admit . . . I've GOT to get it tuned, it's just been hanging out getting adjusted to the new environment!




townhouse 7

So far I'm loving cooking in a new kitchen . . . . we're very  happy with the stainless steel appliances.  Norm had a little angst over if they would stay clean or not but they actually clean up really nicely with some glass cleaner.  Still moving stuff around in all the cupboards . . . but slowly but surely everything is finding a home!

townhouse 6

townhouse 3

townhouse 8



There is also a laundry room / butler's pantry off the kitchen, and a small 1/2 bath next to the laundry just off a small hallway.  We had to search far and wide for the RED washer / dryer combo . . . once upon a time it was all in vogue, but apparently now folks have moved onto a different color.  But we are so glad we persisted in trying to find the red ones . . . it makes laundry almost fun . . .

townhouse 11

Next time . . . we'll go upstairs

WE did some fun things in the bedrooms . . . but  no photos just yet . . .


towhouse 2

Monday, January 14, 2013

It's What's for Dinner!

Hmmmm . . . it smells heavenly tonight,

so I thought I'd share -

Easy Peasey Chicken Pot Pie 

is what's for dinner!

It's one of our favorite meals . . . and this recipe is so easy!

Easy Peasey Chicken Pot Pie (one 10 inch deep dish pie)

1-Frozen deep dish pie crust (two crusts)
1 16oz package frozen mixed vegies (your choice)
1 can Cream of Chicken Soup
1/2 C. milk
2 t. salt
1/2 t. pepper
1/2 t. celery seed
2 C. chopped cooked chicken (I get a roasted chicken from Costco and then it is even EASIER!)

Pour vegies into bottom of frozen pie crust. Pile chicken on top of vegies.  Whisk together the soup and milk and seasonings.  Pour over the filling making sure it stays inside the pie shell. Top with 2nd frozen pie crust. (If you let it sit out for about 30 minutes upside down, it usually comes right out of the pie pan)  Cut a few slits into the top pie crust.  Bake at 425 degrees for 30-35 minutes until nicely browned and filling is bubbly.  If it browns too quickly you can cover lightly with foil.

Tastes like you've been slaving all day :)

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Change of Heart . . .

Good as new . . . after a minor heart procedure!
(really . . .  is there such a thing as a minor heart procedure!)

At least that's what we hope . . . we have to wait several months to know for sure but so far it's lookin' good!

For the last 5 years Kelsie has struggled with a heart problem with a big old long name.

Paroxysmal Supraventricular Tachycardia

Basically what that means is . . .

She has an electrical conduction problem with the heart that causes it to misfire sporadically and for no reason.  This causes the heart to beat very rapidly and without warning lasting perhaps for a few seconds or up to a few hours.  These heart palpitations would usually leave her short of breath, lightheaded and with chest pain.  The medications Kelsie has been taking to control the conduction problem are no fun either - they reduce the blood pressure and also cause drowsiness and dizziness.

When the symptoms continued after trying to discontinue the medications the cardiologists felt a surgical procedure called a cardiac ablation was the best way to proceed.  It works by scarring or zapping tissues in the heart that triggers the abnormal heart rhythm.  It's done using tiny catheters inserted into a vein and then threaded up into the heart.

(Sorry you don't get to see the actual procedure . . . it is QUITE amazing!)

kels 1 DSC09475-2

So that's the scoop -

We arrived at the hospital bright and early on December 26th.  The cardiologists feel there's a high chance the cardiac ablation was successful!  After an overnight stay for monitoring on telemetry, Kelsie is home - and now back in school.

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(You're welcome IHC for this unpaid commercial announcement :)

Makes me grateful for modern medicine and all it's amazing accomplishments!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Finally . . . I have found my sport . . .

Anyone want to join me?

Come on! You know you wannna :D



Tuesday, January 8, 2013

A Little Light Reading . . .

I think we have our work cut out for us . . .

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Stay tuned  . . . for further information still to come . . .

Thursday, January 3, 2013

We seek after THESE things . . .

It's been an amazing month . . . we feel so blessed in so many ways . . .

And truly our family is our biggest blessing, our four children, their spouses, our two grandbabies . . .

extended family, grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins . . .

and we can't forget all the many special people who have come into our lives over the years and become as family . . . adopted in . . . sincerely part of our lives.  We are blessed and strengthened by all, and treasure these precious relationships.  I can't even begin to count how many . . .

I think we feel the abundance of gratitude as the year comes to a close more than any other time of the year, as we look back and reflect on where we have traveled since the beginning of the year, the ups and the downs (more ups than downs usually!)

Especially this year - the holiday season of 2012 . . . our last Christmas together here surrounded by our friends and family . . . we are likely to spend the next three Christmas seasons out of the country and I'm certain that they will be treasured seasons also, but different . . .

Different for us . . . and different for our family who we are leaving behind.

This is just a sample of the special times . . . memories that will sustain us for a long time.

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We miss all those that we didn't have the opportunity to visit with or see
throughout this holiday season!
Particularly Dustin & Cami who spent Christmas
in South Carolina . . . you were on our minds each day!
Loves to you all - at the end of this year.
Happy New Year . . . and best wishes!
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