Monday, April 26, 2010

Monday Musings

I'm Baaaccckkk!!!
It has been a crazy 2 weeks. A GOOD crazy.
But if it doesn't let up a little, I may go BAD crazy.
Good stuff is that I am basically doing Home School with Mary now.
It's going awesome and we are seeing little bits of progress already.
I just need to get organized and the craziness will improve.
So, I've been madly gathering materials, and working on educational goals
and then implementing them.
I can't tell you how excited we are - but I will anyways.
Mary has been happy and giggling and very cooperative with all the
things we are doing.
She also gets to go to her friends (Cindy and Kristin) house each day to do activities with them for an hour. They are so cute together.
Other happenings:
We are still following Rachel around to all her track meets and soccer games.
In fact, this past Saturday, they finally won a game! Yay!
Jessica has been madly studying for AP tests and the ACT.
I have to coax her to take a break and come up for air.

Here's a conversation I had with Rachel tonight:
Rachel: "Mom, what's that know...that treatment when a big needle is stuck in your eye...."
Me: (gag reflex is starting) "WHAT??? That's HORRIBLE!"
Rachel: "You KNOW what it is Mom. You told me about it."
Me: "Huh? Told you about what?"
Rachel: "It's when someone has a mental illness and they would stick a really long needle right through the middle of their eye and into their brain."
Me: (gag reflex is in full swing) "Oh my gosh, Rachel!! That's the most awful thing I've ever heard!! I never told you that!"
Rachel: "Yeah, you did Mom. You told me that most people die from it, but it cured a few people."
Me: "How terrible! I never heard of such a thing!"
Rachel: "Yes you did! You told me that the people that did the treatment made lots of money doing it!"
Me: (still gagging) "I promise Rachel, I never, ever have heard of something so horrible! I never told you that!"
Rachel: "Well.... Maybe I dreamed it."
Me: "I think I'm gonna be sick...."
Oh, life is never dull with teenagers!
On a more serious note: I feel very grateful and blessed to have such a great family. Everyone has such varied personalities and interests that life always has a surprise for me.
Besides my 3 girls at home,
Danny the Doctor - the ultimate goofball who has a heart of gold and is passionate about learning.

Amelia - another goofy kid who is the middle child and loves to dance and be the center of attention when she's home.
Plus, we have a great son-in-law, Jon, who is so good to Amelia - plus he's goofy too!

And then, there's Loren, the missionary and a third goofball (come to think of it, there is lots of goofiness in this family) who is intense and artistic.

Wow! I sure love them all!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Monday Musings

When life gets too busy...

you don't get to enjoy moments like these:

Road trips with your best friend (Dan).

Watching all the kids try to balance on a rope at family reunion!

Watching the 4th of July parade on your Dad's lap.

Having a picnic BBQ when your son comes to visit.

Enjoying wearing flip-flops on a summer day.

Trying to get a close-up picture of a baby colt.

Happy family times - those are real smiles - not fake ones!

Walks in the rain.

Campouts with your daughters.

Frisbee Golf with your cousins.

Piggy-back rides.

And a beautiful sunset on the Arizona strip.

Where time stands still....

Courtyard at Marble Canyon Motel at sunset.

There's a little place I like to go to get away from it all.
It's close to Marble Canyon - a little rock hotel set against the Vermillion Cliffs.
There are no phones or TV's in the rooms.
There is no internet or cell phone coverage.
There is an old cafe there where everything is homemade and the owner greets her guests with, "Howdy! What'll you have today?"
The rooms are small, but comfy, each room themed-
and the original structure dates back to the early 1940's.
You go to bed to the sound of the wind whistling up from the deep canyons below, and wake up to the sound of birds and a bright sunrise over the cliffs below Page, AZ.
Travelers are few - an occasional car passes by - but time stands still (almost) there.
You can feel the worries and troubles of everyday busy living just melt away.
If Dan ever wants me to accompany him on a trip,
all he has to do is promise to take me there on the way home.
I love the sound of silence -
of hearing myself exhale and inhale -
of a leaf rustling in the wind -
or just that ear-deafening sound of nothing but nature.
This is one of the places I can hear that.

And I'm ready to go back - for another dose of "let's leave this Rat Race behind for a bit".

(my apologies for a lack of humor today - perhaps next time)

Rachel and the Six Minute Mile

It's always a delightful surprise when your children discover
something that they excel at, both to them and to you.

Several months back, Rachel asked if she could do winter conditioning with the high school track team.
She wanted to stay in shape for soccer during their off-season.
So, she started running.
She'd never done this before with the exception of a few grade school races.
Weeks, then months go by.
Track season is gearing up and the coach wants her to participate.
Hmmm....she already has club soccer going. I am thinking that this might be too much for her.
But, she REALLY likes it.
And, come to find out (from one of the boys that run with her) she's "REALLY fast"!
So, I relent and sign her up.
Her first track meet, she blows everyone away in the 2 mile by doing this amazing sprint in the final lap. "Where did THAT(energy for a sprint) come from?" was eveyone's thought.
Her time was (i think) 13:40.
Coach was VERY happy.
The following Monday, he gave her the 'Most Athletic' award at practice.
Rachel was definitely hooked.
The next few track meets come and Rachel is also doing the mile run. She gets 6:07, then 6:05 or thereabouts. The wind and the weather are against her. She wants to break that 6 minute mile, but it is elusive.
Coach is pushing her - having her run with the fastest girl on the team.
this past Friday we had another meet.
Perfect day, perfect weather.
Rachel runs the 1 mile (or 1600 meters) and has a great run!!
Her time??
5 minutes and 58 seconds!!!

Man, was she pleased!
Her next goal?
To be in the 555 club (5 minutes, 55 seconds).

Friday, April 9, 2010

Stone Easter Tradition - EGG WARS!!

A Crazy Easter Tradition!

Rachel's Killer Egg!

When I first married into the Stone family, and on my first Easter as a Stone, my husband wanted to play Egg Wars!
Yep, you heard me right! EGG WARS!!
After witnessing it for that first time, I thought he'd lost his mind! I was positive that I'd never seen a sillier tradition, and really didn't want to participate.
Years went by, and one by one the kids all got into it , but I remained aloof. Sadly, I was the one missing out as I insisted (in my mind) that it was just plain ridiculous.
Well, I am really glad that with age comes a little wisdom, and about 10 years ago I relented and got into the action.

Yep, it was as silly as I first imagined, but it was SOOO much FUN!

The interaction with the kids, the "boasting" and "bragging" about your own specially decorated and equipped "killer" egg, and then the actual showdown was never to be forgotten!!
So here's a few pics of this years EGG WARS!

First, you boil and decorate your eggs!! The decoration part is the most important!!
You move the furniture, lay out a towel or sheet...
And roll your eggs against one another. If your egg breaks - you loose that match!
Then winners roll against each other until just one egg is left unbroken!
Dan even makes up a bracket chart!!
Jessica and her "movie star" egg were this years WINNER!!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Monday Musings on Tuesday(again)

Mondays are becoming just too busy to muse or to blog. I do lot's of 'musing' or thinking on Sundays, so, I may have to adjust and plan ahead. So, here it's now Tuesday and I really don't have time today either. But, I'll try and make this quick.
Today is going
to be on a more SERIOUS tone and I'm going to title this:


(take your pick)

My Aunt Lucille Tyler Greenwood (my Dad's sister) passed away last week.

Aunt Lucille's and Uncle Rolf's family (she's the white-haired lady in pink next to the groom)

She was a GREAT LADY.
She was over 80 when she passed and had a very large family of 7 children and lots and lots of grandchildren and great-grandchildren. BUT, the point is, she lived a GREAT life. No, no, she didn't become famous (except to her family) or travel extensively or amass great wealth. But she was one of the finest individuals I have known. She worked hard and always smiled. She gave and gave and gave. She remembered people's names and was genuinely interested and cared about others. She was known for her kindness and generosity. She is someone I'd like to become like.

Display at Funeral

Her children: L to R: Sue Ann, Janet, Marcia, Bill, Lori, Earl, Rita

Her children - my cousins, have taken after her. Good and kind and generous.
I traveled down to Eagar, AZ for the funeral this past weekend. I went with my husband, Dan, my youngest, Rachel, my cousin, Duane, and his son Matt.

Tyler cousins!
It was so good to see all the cousins and aunts and uncles and visit with this GREAT FAMILY, to which I belong.
Lucille's children, spouses and her remaining siblings on front row.

For the last few months I have been reading journals of some of my ancestors. WOW!
Can I say that again?

Totally amazing!
Talk about staying true and faithful' about working hard for the necessities of life (not expecting the good 'ol 'government handout'), about enduring hardships, about enjoying the simple things, and about loving your family enough to do anything for them. I have to honestly say, that through the reading of these histories and journals, I have felt a change come over me. These lives of this GREAT FAMILY and HERITAGE to which I belong, although they are long gone, have touched my life and influenced me in a way that I don't think could happen in any other manner.

Side note: I have now lost 17 pounds!! Yay! Feels so good!