Thursday, September 27, 2007

Christine Lavin

I'm a big fan of Christine Lavin.

Many years ago (at least four, but it could have been even more) I was listening to "A Prairie Home Companion" on National Public Radio. Now, "Prairie Home Companion" isn't my favorite show on NPR (that would be "Car Talk"), but on this particular day, I was listening. I remember sitting in my bedroom, in the papa san chair that I used to keep in the corner, just relaxing and enjoying a little bit of down-time. Suddenly, this woman started playing her guitar and singing this really quirky song. Here's an excerpt:

I am at the opera,
I don't like the opera,
but he loves the opera and I love him
I follow the libretto,
I follow the conductor,
when I follow the plot, my head begins to spin
I don't understand a word,
even when it's English!
Everyone around me says,
"ooh this is divine"
I don't like the opera but look I'm at the opera
It's a good thing he can't read my mind.
(lyrics by
Christine Lavin from her album
"Good Thing He Can't Read My Mind" ©1988, All Rights Reserved)

Well, as you might imagine, a song all about opera caught my attention immediately. I sat up straight, started paying attention, and got a notepad. When our friend Garrison Keillor mentioned her name along with the name of the song, I wrote it all down. Eventually (after a bit of sleuthing on the internet) I was able to order a copy of her CD, "Good Thing He Can't Read My Mind". I found several other songs that I enjoyed, although none so much as "Good Thing . . ."

Through the years I've purchased some of her other CD's as well, and I now am a proud owner of three Christine Lavin offerings. I've even seen her in person, because (as luck would have it), my local folk music society brought her in for a concert a few years ago.

She's been singing for years and years, and has such a fun quirky view of the world, and of male/female relationships in particular. I just love her songs. For any of you who are thinking about checking her out, I should mention that a few of her songs go places that I personally wouldn't go, and provide details that I personally wouldn't provide. So, you might want to be aware of that. I tend to be quite conservative about what I can comfortably listen to or watch, and there are probably 3-4 songs on the three CDs that I have that I simply pass over when they come on. Having made that compromise, I've enjoyed hours and hours of listening and sing-along-ing pleasure with my friend Christine.

And that's probably enough for today.



Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Four days early!

Did I say that the weather wasn't supposed to clear up until the weekend?

Well, the weekend must have come early this time around because the sun is out, the sky is blue, and I'm feeling pretty cheery.

Isn't it odd how weather can effect some of us like that?

Monday, September 24, 2007

An Update

Well, not too much is going on, so here's just a brief update on some of the things that I've mentioned before (and some of the things that I haven't mentioned before)

  • I haven't had any cooking disasters lately, which has been a nice change, although it doesn't make for very interesting blogging. (I did do a little bit of "jazz cooking"* yesterday, with some surprisingly good results. I made a casserole with chicken, swiss cheese, cream of chicken soup and breadcrumbs, and both Eric and I thought it was pretty tasty. That's kind of a rare occurrence.)
  • Eric and I decided to call the first week of our bet a "practice round", and we've started the bet again in earnest. So, I'm still in the running for the gift card. Whew!
  • We had our ward Primary Program yesterday, and it went miraculously well. (I say miraculously, because we had a practice for the program the day before. I won't go into too much detail about the practice, except to say that I left it very discouraged and sure that the program was going to be an absolute disaster. As it turned out, it wasn't even close to a disaster. I call that a an absolute miracle)
  • I drove to American Fork on Saturday to attend a bridal shower for one of my cousins. While there I was able to meet up with Jennalyce and have our first longer-than-5-minute-face-to-face conversation in over six years. What a treat!

So that's what's been going on lately. Today has been a fairly low-key day. The sky has been overcast pretty much all day, with sporadic sprinklings of rain here and there. I've been a little bit on the grumpy side today, and when I feel that way, I'm always tempted to go into analyzation-override, which is when I examine every minute detail of my life and try to determine what is going on that is contributing to my grumpiness. But, I'm fighting the temptation. The fact is, my present mood almost surely has much more to do with the dark clouds outside my window than with any aspect in my current situation. I guess I'll know for sure when the sun comes out (which isn't fore casted to happen until the weekend--rats!).

So until then, I'll curtail my analyzing tendencies, and focus on other things. I don't know what they will be at this point, but if they're blog-worthy (and not too personal for the world-wide-web), rest assured that you'll hear about them.


*Jazz Cooking is the kind of cooking that Heidi does. I generally do "by-the-book-cooking", even if I'm making a recipe that I've made a million times before. I don't have a great memory for things like measurements, and (as I think we've established with some of the stories in this blog) I don't have very trustworthy instincts when it comes to measurements, cooking times, accent spices, etc. Heidi, on the other hand is GREAT at improvising while cooking. Hence the term "Jazz Cooking"

Friday, September 21, 2007

Happy Birthday Dorothea!

Today is (obviously) Dorothea's birthday. We've been friends for several years now, and our friendship has been an absolute blessing for me. Isn't it great when you have friends like that?
I've written a few posts about Dorothea in the past, my favorite of which is here.

There are others though, here, here, and here as well as many other mentions at various and sundry areas of this blog. (to understand how that last one is about Dorothea, you would have to know that she threw my "friend" bridal shower)
Eric and I will be seeing Dorothea and Sergei tonight to celebrate this auspicious day. In the meantime though, I'm posting a little poem that I composed as I was curling my hair this morning.

Ode to Dorothea

With her beautiful hair
and the kindest of eyes,
With the way that she laughs (often!)
and the pink curling iron that she buys,

(as well as pink shirts, pink capris, pink jewelry, pink shoes, pink pens, pink purses, you name it! You remember Julia Roberts in Steel Magnolias? How she spoke in that adorable southern drawl saying, "Pink is my signature color!" Remember that? That's Dorothea! Pink is her signature color. Funny thing though-if I had to name a color that was my absolutely least favorite, guess what it would be? Yup, Pink. Somehow we still manage to remain friends. )

As we laugh over breadsticks
and carbonated drinks
She tells me of her adventures
and I tell her of my "thinks"

And we laugh at ourselves
(and we laugh at our men)
And our laughter seems to move me
from grouchiness to zen.

(This is truer than you might guess. The last time Dorothea and I had lunch together was about a week ago. Eric called me and as we were talking, I mentioned that I was going to be meeting up with Dorothea that day. I had been having some struggles with worrying and stressing too much, and relaxing and trusting too little, and it had been kind of hard on both me AND Eric. When he heard that we were getting together, Eric was thrilled at the prospect of a "kinder, gentler (less OCD)" Charlotte--the one that usually comes home after having spent quality time with Dorothea)

And as I reflect,
On each good memory
How grateful I am
For her friendship to me.

Hey--Tennyson I'm not. But, it's all good, right? We do what we can with what we have and what we are. And I'm one grateful girl. Happy Birthday Dorothea!

(note to Dorothea--I know it's not the "30 days of Summer", but it's something, right?) ;-)

Pinecones and Holly Berries

So, last night, I'm brushing my teeth, and Eric casually mentions that he knows what one of my Christmas presents is going to be.

Oh Sweet Agony!

I love Christmas, my birthday, my half-birthday (which was last week, incidentally), and any other excuse that I can make to get presents. What am I, ten years old? I can't explain it. I even admit that a mere 4-5 years ago (when I was over thirty years old mind you) I unwrapped some of my Christmas presents, saw what they were, and then re-wrapped them.

So, the knowledge that Eric has one of my presents all figured out (but apparently not purchased yet) is nearly enough to drive me crazy with joyous anticipation. I've tried to get him to give me hints, but he's remaining rock steady and silent as a tomb.

But, Christmas is still a ways away. I figure I have a 50/50 chance of getting him to crack.

Little does he know that I already have one of his presents purchased and hidden away.

Now, I'm a big fan of fall. I love the cool mornings, I love the fresh produce, I love Halloween, and Thanksgiving has been my favorite holiday for at least 10 years now. But, with this "present development", I just can't keep myself from humming . . .

"It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas, everywhere you go . . . "

And really, if all that humming puts a smile on my face, what's not to like about that?


Wednesday, September 19, 2007

a quick one-as promised


Are cake doughnuts deep-fried?

Since I prefer the raised variety, I've never given this question very much thought.

But, if they are, in fact deep fried (and I believe they are), then Eric and I are once again on equal footing in our little bet!

Yippee!! Let the ruthless, conniving, trash-talking tactics resume!

I might as well have that gift card in my hot little hand!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Oil (or, we could call this one "Incedentally", instead)

Three or four years ago, Theo and I decided to have a Hanukkah party. Theo dusted off his menorah, and I checked out a book from the library and decided to make potato latkes. Since my cooking skills are far from reliable, I determined to do a "practice run" of the latkes before the actual party. It's a good thing I did, because the first time I tried them, I put far too much oil in the pan, which burned, and left a pretty unpleasant odor in the apartment that Henrietta and I were sharing. The smell hung around for a few days at least. Fortunately it had cleared out by the time of the party, and the second run of latkes ended up being kind of a hit.

Then, last May, Eric and I had a little "neither-of-us-ever-have-to-take-another-math-course-for-the rest-of-our-natural-lives celebration". Since we both love Thai food, and since I have a Thai food cookbook, I leafed through it and found a recipe that I thought looked interesting and not too hard. It was some kind of corn fritter thing, which involved deep frying a batter with various vegetables in vegetable oil--kind of like tempura, but not really.

I had learned my lesson with the latkes, and so I decided that rather than burn the oil, this time I wouldn't let it get all that hot, and things would work out fine. Well, the result of that decision what that, although our home continued to smell nice and fresh regardless of my cooking adventures, we ended up with soggy, yucky, dough-ey corn and vegetable dough masses. Luckily, I had made enough side dishes that the failure of the corn experiment wasn't a big deal, and we continued our celebration.

So, last night . . .

I decided to try out a new recipe that Henrietta had e-mailed to me. Now, we aren't a deep-frying family these days, (as you know from reading the previous post) but this particular recipe did call for cooking the vegetables and chicken in a few tablespoons of hot oil. (The instructions were very particular about the need of the oil to be very hot). Since I had the little-masses-of-dough-that-were-supposed-to-be-corn-fritters fisaco still in recent memory, I determined that I needed to get that oil really really hot. That was probably a mistake.

(Incedentally, have you noticed how often the phrase "That was probably a mistake" turns up in this blog? I haven't actually counted, but I can tell you that it is much more often than it should.)

(Also incedentally, have you noticed how I seem to have a need to use more italics lately than I have in previous weeks and months? I have no explanation for that. Sorry)

(Now, back to our story . . . )

I put the burner on high, put the oil in the wok and (and here's where I think I really got into trouble), put the lid on the wok. Then I went back to chopping water chestnuts. After a few minutes, I noticed a bit of a smokey smell in the air. I looked at my wok, and saw a fair amount of smoke escaping from under the lid. Now, I have never pretended to be a gourmet cook, but even I knew that couldn't be good.

I removed the wok from the burner, and turned the burner down. I debated for a bit as to what I should do next, and finally determined to take the lid off the wok. (again--that might have been a mistake. I haven't decided for sure on this one.) Smoke billowed, and I mean BILLOWED out of the pan and into the kitchen. There was far more smoke than I have ever seen in one room at one time. Immediately my eyes were watering, my lungs were burning, and I was thrust into uncontrollable coughing fits. I rushed around, opening every window in the house, turning on fans, opening doors. It was a mess, a great, big, giant, awful, mess.

You might think at this point that I would give up and order pizza or break out the PB&J, wouldn't you? But, you'd be wrong. You'd also be forgetting who you were dealing with. The fact is, I really wanted to see how this particular recipe would turn out. So, I scraped the burned oil out of the wok (it took part of the finish of the pan with it), washed it, and put three more tablespoons of oil there, turning the heat to medium this time. There was still much more smoke in the kitchen than could really be considered healthy, and I went through yards and yards of Kleenex as my eyes and throat continue to burn.

(Another incedentally, I've decided that I can safely remove "firefighter" from my list of possible occupations)

The rest of the story is pretty basic. The recipe turned out great, and by the time Eric got home from the lumberyard, the smoky-ness had been reduced from something that caused huge coughing fits with every breath to something that caused you to wrinkle your nose and think to yourself "what is that smell?" every few minutes. Fortunately (for both of us, probably) Eric was a good sport about it, and hardly teased me at all. By the end of the evening, we had more or less forgotten about the burned oil, and only remembered the delicious lettuce wraps that we had feasted on.

Until this morning.

At about 7:15 a.m., as I ventured downstairs to leave for my morning walk, I smelled that pungent, wonderful odor, and I was suddenly transported in my mind, reliving the whole experience. I suppose it may be a few days before this little culinary adventure is nothing but a distant memory.


(These posts have been kind of long lately huh? I'll try to do a couple of short ones next)

Friday, September 14, 2007

"Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee"

So, Eric and I have this bet.

From September 10 to November 10, we are not going to eat any deep fried foods. No french fries, no doughnuts, no tiny spicy chicken, no egg rolls, no potato or tortilla chips. Nada. One of our credit cards allows us to get gift cards with our reward points, and we're only a couple of dollars away from having enough points to qualify for a $50 gift card to any one of a number of places. If we both survive to November 10, we share the gift card. If one of us caves, then the other one gets the gift card all to him or her self! Eric and I are each pretty confident in our ability to out-last the other one, as evidenced by the fact that we've each determined how we are going to spend our $50 card once November 11 rolls around.

For my part, I've been a little bit insufferable since we started, teasing Eric incessantly, reminding him (a la Mohammad Ali) that he really doesn't have a chance of winning this bet, because I am far more stubborn and ruthless than he is, and if I have to resort to evasive and underhanded tactics to trick him into eating forbidden foods, I certainly will. (let's not forget who makes the meals in our household, shall we?)

So, with that background, I take you to last night: I am casually washing the mascara off my eyes, and mentally running through the events of my day while Eric sits on our bed, doing a little bit of sketching. As I mull over the events of the day, I think about the finance meeting we held in the afternoon, and some of the phone conversations I had, and part of the book that I read in the evening when I should have been attending my ward Enrichment Meeting. Then I get thinking about lunch. Gregorio had brought in sandwiches for lunch today, in honor of one of our associates who has been here consulting for a few days and will now be heading back to California (and then to India for a bit, but that's a different story). As I was remembering the delicious Reuben sandwich that I was able to enjoy earlier, in my mind's eye, I looked over the plate that held that sandwich, along with a bunch of grapes, a scoop of potato salad, and (GASP) at least a handful of potato chips! HORRORS!! AGONY!! HUMBLE PIE!!

I had been so focused on not eating french fries and doughnuts (my two biggest deep-fried-temptations), that I hadn't even thought about the chips being forbidden as I blithely munched away! What was I going to do?! It only took me a millisecond to examine my options. Eric didn't know about my mis-step, and the only way he would ever find out would be if I told him. So, I could just keep quiet about the whole thing, and live with the fact that I had lied to my husband a brief five months after our wedding date. Or, I could come clean, announce that I had lost the bet, and concede defeat. Or, (and this is where I struck brilliance) I could try to trick Eric into thinking that it was HE who had actually lost the bet, then admit that I had failed too, and we could call it a draw and start all over.

I went into the bedroom (mascara-less now), and cuddled up to Eric in the most alluring way I could manage. It took a little bit of perseverance to get him to shift his focus from the sketchbook to my adorable-ness, but I am a master at perseverance, and so I eventually succeeded.

Sweetly, I reminded Eric of the afternoon of September 10 (Which was actually five hours before we officially started the bet. I didn't mention this little fact in my argument however.), during which he had enjoyed a full serving of french fries with his lunch, a serving of french fries that was really practically forbidden, since we had determined that we were going to have a bet, and just hadn't set up the terms for it yet.

I reasoned that since Eric had enjoyed fried foods after we had determined that we were going to stop eating them, wasn't it only fair that I have one last opportunity to enjoy a little indulgence before I swore them off for 60 long days? I mean really, is that too much to ask? It seemed fair to me.

I could go on with the additional arguments that I made, with detailed description of my masterful handling of the situation, using a talent for persuasiveness that even surprised me.

But, what's the point of going into all that detail? The fact is, Eric didn't go for it. He saw right through my deception, and asked for the straight unblemished truth. Faced with that, I spilled the beans, and immediately went into begging mode. "Please! Please! It was an accident! You have to have mercy on me! I can't lose this bet a mere two-and-a-half days after we start it! I'll do anything! You love me! Remember?"

Now, Eric is nothing if not a softie. So, it is really quite miraculous that he held out for a good ten minutes of begging and wheedling, and promising, and flirting, and even more "-ing" before he finally agreed to forgive my indiscretion and let me continue in my quest to win the elusive gift card.

And so, the bet is still on, and my quest continues. I'm lucky to live with such a forgiving and good natured husband.

Still, I can't help but feel that with this development, my current position is greatly diminished.

I can't help but wonder what "The Great Ali" would do now.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007


This is a post about me and Spanish.

My father served as a Mormon Missionary in the country of Chile in the late 1960s. In order to be very effective there, he obviously had to learn Spanish. When I was little, he would engage in various sporadic attempts to ingrain the language into our heads as well. The most frequent effort was that he would often call me or my brother "pobrecita" or "pobrecito" (poor little girl/boy) when one of us was whining about something. He'd also tell us to "Apurate! Apurate!" (Hurry up!) when we were lagging behind on a hike, or slowly dragging ourselves up to the kitchen bar for breakfast or whatever.

If you've been reading this blog for awhile, you'll remember about the time my family taught our whole ward the Spanish words to "Give, Said the Little Stream". That was fun as well.

The most random of the methods my father used to make us Spanish-literate though was when he decided that one day per week, he would only speak Spanish to us all. I remember how fun that was, in a weird kind of way. Eating our family evening meal was especially fun, since he'd ask us to pass him the salt or whatever in Spanish, and we didn't know what he was talking about. We'd all just laugh then. Now I look back, and I'm impressed that my mother (who doesn't speak Spanish) was willing to put up with it, and did so with such a great attitude. Anyway, as I remember, this particular Spanish immersion tactic was rather short lived, probably 3-4 weeks at the most.

So, getting to the part about me and Spanish:

I took two years of Spanish in high school, and then about 5 years later I was called on a Spanish-Speaking LDS mission. (again, if you're a regular reader to this blog, you already know this from reading this post) High school was great, but I'll admit that the motivation to study and actually learn the language was much stronger when I was faced with people who didn't understand me if I didn't get it right.

Since I returned from my mission, I've tried to keep the language in my head, with varying degrees of success. I used to be a volunteer teacher in my local literacy program, and that was helpful, since I was always assigned people who spoke little or no English, and read even less. After I got tired of that, I worked a volunteer shift a few times a month at the free medical clinic here. Many of the patients spoke little or no English, and so I was able to do a fair amount of translating. That experience was really good for me, since my Spanish vocabulary at that point didn't cover medical terminology at all.

I'm in a season now that I don't do much volunteering, and so I've had to find other ways to practice. I read Spanish Books when I'm feeling like a challenge, and I have two very good friends from South and Central America, so I speak with them in Spanish whenever I can. It works out all right. I've definitely lost some of my fluency, but I can get by, and I'm not afraid to speak when given the chance. That's pretty much been my main goal.

You may be wondering why it is so important to me that I hang on to this language. (or, maybe you're not) The truth is, it's partially because I worked dang hard to learn it, and don't want to lose it. But, that's not the main reason. (I worked dang hard to learn to play the clarinet as well, and now I doubt I could even play one scale, given the opportunity)

So, what IS the main reason I want to keep up my Spanish?

The people. I have SO much fun when I'm around a group of people whose primary language is Spanish. I don't know exactly what it is, or why it is, but I laugh more. I'm happier. I feel better about myself, and better about the world in general.

Keeping up on Spanish is such a small price to pay for such a big reward.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

I just love it . . .

  • I just love it that I live in an area where I can go to the Gardeners Market every Saturday morning. (Even though I've only been once so far this summer)

  • I just love it that I live in a neighborhood where for a mere $30 per year, the Boy Scouts will set up and take down the American flag in my front yard on Memorial Day, Flag Day, Independence Day, Pioneer Day, Labor Day, and September 11.

  • I just love it that my mother taught me how to crochet when I was 9 years old, passing on a skill to me that she learned from her mother, and that when I was 25 years old, I re-taught my grandmother how to crochet. What a fun circle!

  • I just love it that I drive a Toyota RAV4, which gives me the road clearance and safe feeling of a truck or SUV, but gives me the drive-ability and gas mileage of a car. (and no, this is not a Toyota sponsored post)

  • I just love it that my mother-in-law is a master tomato gardener, and that she is willing to give us all the tomatoes that we can eat.

  • This is a picture I took of my papa this summer (he's the one holding the hose). There is nothing extra special about this picture--except for the smile on his face. You might have to zoom in to get a real appreciation for the facial expression, and if you don't know my father, the smile probably won't say as much to you. But as for me, I just love it.

o sole mio

I found this on you-tube this morning. It's an excerpt from one of the concerts we (Utah Festival Opera) put on this summer. I think it's hilarious. Here's the link

Today is the Day

Remember the post about the organization that is helping us to change the world, one good deed at a time? Well, just in case you forgot, today is September 11, which is the official day for these good deeds. Over 250,000 people have pledged to do good deeds today, and there's a news article on Yahoo that describes the movement, the history, and gives examples of what some people are doing. I just read it. If you'd like to read it as well, you can go here.

Happy helping,

Thursday, September 06, 2007

"Hey Ma'am, how 'bout a cookie or two?"

So last night, Eric and I were out trying to drum up a little money in the annual Friends of Scouting Drive. We had two routes, and as we were knocking doors on the first one, we had an experience that made me think (and then what I was thinking made me laugh).

We knocked on a door, and a woman answered. Eric explained to her that we were out collecting money for the Boy Scouts of America, and asked if she would like to donate. She said that she didn't want to, and then she said, "And you want to know why I don't want to?"

I didn't particularly want to know why, and I'm sure Eric didn't either, but we both smiled, and Eric said that he would like to know why. (that little liar!)

The woman told us that she didn't support the BSA because she had all daughters, and that apparently the Boy Scouts don't share their money with the Girl Scouts. She didn't feel like that was fair, and so she had no desire to help us with our little fund drive.

I've (obviously) never been a Boy Scout, and I wasn't a Girl Scout either. (I opted to be a part of a 4-H club instead, and boy was that GREAT! Sometime maybe I'll do a post about 4-H. I'm a real believer, let me tell you!) So, I don't know any of the details as far as the Boys and Girls sharing their scout money, or any of that.

As I think about it though, I get a little giggle-ly when I try to imagine what "Boy Scout Cookie Month" would be like.

Honestly, don't you?

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

La Comida de Nuestro Amor?

I don't love Mexican food. I mean, I don't dislike it, and I do eat it and enjoy it quite frequently, but I don't just absolutely adore it. There are other foods that I, in fact, like more. Eric is the same way. He likes it just fine, but it's not necessarily his favorite type of cuisine.

So, why is it that:

We went to a Mexican Grill a mere 30 minutes after Eric proposed.

  • That same Mexican Grill catered our Wedding Luncheon.

Really, why would that be???

I have no idea.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

The weekend report

I had a lovely lovely weekend.

Friday I got together with Camilla, Ilsa, Bonita Juanita, Elenita and Sylvia for our annual "the Friday before Labor Day Campout". Last year we set up a tent in Camilla & Slyvia's backyard, this year we ditched the tent and slept on the living room floor. We ate carne asada (delicious!) and Marie Calendar Chocolate Satin Pie (my favorite dessert), and told stories and laughed and laughed. We were going to play games and/or watch a DVD, but we all had too much to say and to hear for any of that. So, we just talked and ate and laughed. It was lovely.

Saturday Eric and I toyed with the idea of going to Salt Lake to do some shopping that we simply couldn't do at home, but we got going too late, and so we stuck around home mostly. Sunday was a low key day as well.

Monday we slept in, met Eric's parents and nephews for lunch at Costa Vida, and eventually made our way into the mountains for a little bit of fossil hunting. The canyon was beautiful, and we had a great time playing together up there. We even found several fossils, although we left nearly all of them up the mountain. Do you remember the days when you were a kid and you'd go looking for rocks? Any sparkly rock I found would eventually find its way into my bedroom, where it would spend the next 10 years in a shoebox in the closet, before eventually being tossed out. I was sorely tempted to take a rock or two home with me (because of the fossils, you know), until I remembered that shoebox. It took a fair amount of will power to leave my treasures there on the mountain, but both Eric and I were strong and we managed.

Or so we thought . . .

An hour after we returned home, as we were snacking on leftover salad and not-leftover tomato sandwiches, Eric fished in his pocket and brought out two flat rocks. He had put them in his pocket to be used as skipping stones, and promptly forgotten about them. Not having a lake or pond or creek in our complex, he determined to trash the stones.

And now it's Tuesday, and life is pretty much back to normal. I was able to go walking this morning with a friend of mine who I haven't seen or said more than "hello" to in over 14 years. We went to high school together, and were on Cross-Country and the Track and Field teams together there. Then life took us different places and we lost touch. But her husband just got a job teaching at Utah State University here, and so we're back to living in the same area. Yippee!
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