On May 4, 2008, two very cool things happened: 1) Julianne turned 20; and 2) Julianne (Juje) and I both "walked" in the graduation ceremony at SUU. Juje got her Associate degree, and I FINALLY got my Masters of Education degree. It was appropriate that Juje and I walked together, because she is really the reason I didn't get the degree sooner. When I had Julianne at the ripe old age of 40, I was so thrilled to get her that I took two years off from work. When I had to go back to work, I cried. I remember trying to put on my mascara in the mornings with my eyes welling with tears at the thought of leaving my baby daughter with a sitter. SO...I treasured all the time I could with her. I didn't want to leave home after school to go take more classes as she grew. I did it anyway, but not in a major way until much later in her life. So the earning of the Masters' degree was a LONG process. Do you see the Juje connection?
FINALLY, in 2008, at the age of 60, I DID it! Which all goes to show...it's never too late, kids!!!!
We are having family time this Sabbath evening: Aaron, Janna, and I are sitting around the kitchen table, each with a laptop in front of him/her. We are quite companionable as we do our own cruising and sharing. So far, Aaron has shown us a cool youtube video of someone singing a tribute to John Williams' fabulous movie themes...only they all have words. It's so worth a listen. I posted the link right on this blog--You Tube faves, I think.
There IS a homemade (to distinguish it from cake mix!) chocolate cake baking in the oven, thanks to Janna and Kendall, and the smell is fabulous. If you want the recipe, look on the Hershey's cocoa can. Janna says she uses more vanilla, a LOT less sugar, more cocoa. Speaking of cooking--Darwin, Aaron, and Kendall cooked dinner tonight while I languished in my grotty pjs and thought benevolent thoughts. I need a shower!
I am FINALLY getting over my crud. I still can't sing, but I CAN talk, and that is such a blessing. What am I without my voicebox???
The Worwoods came to visit today, and it was DELIGHTFUL! Oh, how we love them. We talked, laughed, shared favorite books, movies, etc...and just generally enjoyed each other's company. I still want Juje to marry Dan when he gets home from his mission. We all do. But I guess the couple in question may have their own ideas!!! I think arranged marriages are highly underrated.
I am so excited to be going to Colorado for Thanksgiving--grandkids, AHOY!!!! I should have a grandkid slideshow on here. By jingo, I will when I can figure out how to do it!
Cedar Mountain Memories - Since we didn't do a mountain trip this year, I have to live in the past. If I was more vain, I wouldn't post this, but I like everything else in the picture except ME. Sigh. But I do love the daughter in it, and the mountain scenery!
We used to go hunting for elderberries every autumn at October Conference time. Kanarra Mountain was the place to find them--then we'd come home, pick the little buggers off the stems, and make elderberry jelly. Oh, yum. It was a little bit of heaven. This year we didn't make it up there, so I searched out some photos from a couple of years ago because I missed our annual trek.
Julianne just called from Logan and told me that it was all foggy and cold there. I looked out my window where the sun is drenching the Hurricane hill...with a background of deep blue autumn skies and thanked my lucky stars. It's a beautiful day here. The trees are in various stages of undress--a few brazen hussies standing stark naked, but most still clinging on to their leaves--golden, red, green--well, you get the picture. It's cool--around 60 degrees right now, according to the Fay (Santa Fe).
Every year I say, "Oh, this is the prettiest autumn ever." And every year, I mean it! It's official. Autumn is my favorite season.
Here's why I love it:
The weather: It's FINALLY cooling down. That may be one of my biggest compliments to autumn! Oh, how I love having windows open to outside air--cool breezes blowing the curtains in the bedroom, wind chimes shivering with delight.
The skies get deeper hues--the sunsrises and sunsets are magnificent. Clouds put on special shows with the occasional rain storm.
The leaves, oh, the leaves! I LOVE the changing colors of the leaves. I love them drifting down to carpet lawns. I think people get way too paranoid about raking them up. Heavenly Father made so many varieties of trees with so many shapes of leaves. I think I must have helped design a few!
The food--apples from New Harmony are at their peak, especially the Ida Reds. Those tart, tangy apples just make my mouth water, and I need to make apple crisp. My mind turns to hot chocolate in front of a wee fire, to pumpkin cookies and hot, spiced cider, even to home-made bread fresh from the oven, with a liberal slathering of butter melting on a slice. Oh, YUM! And I didn't even mention the PIES!
It has so many holidays to recommend it: Halloween fun, Thanksgiving delight, with Christmas hard on their heels. The whole season is filled with family warmth and love. Ah....
It means winter follows. Winter means no lawns for DarDar to worry about, no garden to water, weed, harvest, no horrendous southern Utah heat that makes me CRAZY. Winter really is hibernation time...you want to go to bed earlier because of the long nights...it's RESTFUL! As a kid I hated it, but I love it now! I would a thousand times rather be cold than hot!
Well, enough. You get the idea. I will love autumn clear until...spring. It must be the transitional seasons that suck me in.
NEWS: Kendall came over yesterday afternoon and cleaned the carpets in the front room. It was lovely coming home to stacked up furniture, fans going, and clean carpet. Yay. Darwin worked his heinie (sp?) off, too...washing the cobweb infested window on the west wall in the front room. Since he brought home the power sprayer for the outside and got rid of the cobwebs, he has been fretting about the windows. Let him fret, I say...because I LOVE him washing them. That window positively sparkles...and I DID stay awhile!
Janna pitched our old Wal Mart Christmas tree and bought a better one at Costco. She has been itching to put it up. I've never heard of such a thing...putting a tree up before Thanksgiving!!! Oh, la! But since the carpet was clean, Kendall couldn't resist getting it out of the box and setting it up. It took a LONG time, since he is so talented at fixing each branch just so. The tree looks good...covered with lights. I'm sure I'll be heartily sick of it by Christmas--but I have a delightful, slightly wicked feeling having it up so early. Who knows when it will actually get decorated. Our goal is to do it before Thanksgiving---and have the Christmas lights all up, too. Huzzah!
I have been working long hours at school, doing SEOP conferences. It's my part-time job, for which I will get paid $17 or so an hour. I am going to use some of the money to do something about my dang hair. I have too many gray roots to continue coloring it this dark. Maybe I'll go blond again!
Oh, how I love Facebook...and NOT just for Word Twist, kids! I love seeing your tidbits that you post, and mostly, the photos. I miss my grandkids like crazy. Maybe moving to Colorado wouldn't be such a bad thing. We wouldn't be that much further from Springville...
I love people: Old ones, young ones, and all ages in-between. If you are a person and you are reading this, guess what? I LOVE YOU, you lucky dog! I adore my family most of all...and can I just say right here that grandkids really ARE the best? I am married to Darwin Gifford. Since there's only one of this wonderful man, you're out of luck. I got him first. We've been married 40 years now, and they truly are the best years of my life. We were blessed with 7 super-intelligent, talented and loving children: Aaron, Andrew, Katie, Janna, Shauna, Kendall, and Julianne.