Friday, February 26, 2010

New Year's Post?

So, way back last June, I gave Bruce tickets to the Rose Bowl Parade on New Year's Day. With the craziness of the last 2 months, I've never gotten around to posting those pictures, so here they finally are!
Here we are at the Rose Bowl on New Year's Eve day. They have a few floats on display the days leading up to the parade and you can go see the workers putting the final flowers on.
There were SO many fans wearing their team colors there! Bruce noticed that the Oregon fans were young and hip, and the Ohio State fans were over 80 with lots of money. Hmmm... (I'm trippin' on Bruce's choice of shirts here. He loves his Hawaii shirts!)

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Off He Goes!

Well, it's done. Peter is a missionary at the MTC! He was set apart on Tuesday at 7:00. We tried to play some family games that night, but kept being interrupted by people who wanted to see Pete one more time- including several girls bearing gifts (cookbooks, journals, etc.). *eyeroll* Ben and I helped him finish his packing and we finally got to bed way past missionary curfew hours.

In the morning we took Shannon with us to breakfast, then took the LONGEST ride to Provo. Peter fell asleep on the way and when he woke up in Orem, he made several disparaging remarks about BYU and Utah County in general, (sorry all of you that live there, but he is his father's son!).

After driving by the entrance, we quickly realized that a picture by the MTC sign was not going to work. Too crowded, nowhere to park, and they have the whole new drop-off traffic pattern. So we drove up to the temple and had some really nice elders take our picture there.
Then it was time for him to go- we drove in, a nice elder helped us unload his luggage, we took a few last pictures, and off he went with a smile on his face.Bruce and I got back in the car, and I'll admit that as we drove away, I craned my neck to look back and see his red head walk up the hill in that crowd of missionaries as long as I could. And then I cried.

Luckily, we had a few errands to run. There is a place on University Avenue that will pick up boxes from missionaries at the MTC- stuff they decide they don't need to take with them- and store them for $1.00 a box. We picked up a friend's son's boxes there, then bought a new color printer since mine died. Then we did a session at the Jordan River Temple and went to dinner. After dropping off those boxes we didn't even get home until after 8:00, so we did a good job of filling our day. Plus, there were treats from a ward member waiting on the porch for us. So nice!

I'm so happy and proud that Peter is serving a mission. I know he will be a great missionary, even though I will miss his crazy self.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

A Tie Is a Tie, Unless You Live At My House!

We are in the midst of mission packing here! When it came time to pack ties, several of Peter's beloved ties made it into the suitcase. Ties are a big deal at my house. Certain requirements must be met if a tie will pass muster.

1) It must be made of thick, upholstery-like fabric. This will help to make a massive knot and it will help the tie to pass the "Does it stand sideways by itself" test, as demonstrated at Shannon's wedding:
2) The tie fabric must be unique. Eye-catching, if you will. The best place to find these ties is at Savers or the DI. A certain vintage flair is most desirable.
These days, missionaries watch 3 training videos online before entering the MTC. After watching these videos, Peter quietly switched out the most rakish group of ties for a more sedate collection. We'll see if I get a request for those fabulous ties in a week or so...

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Orange Dreams for Randi

My cute DIL's mom was at my house last night and sampled some cookies I was making- Orange Dreams. I got this recipe from my Big Sis, who is the queen of cookie making!

Orange Dreams
1 c. butter or margarine, softened
1/2 c. white sugar
1/2 c. packed brown sugar
1 egg
1 Tablespoon grated orange peel
2 1/2 c. flour
3/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 c. vanilla chips
In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugars. Beat in egg and orange peel. Combine flour, baking soda and salt; gradually stir into the creamed mixture. Stir in vanilla chips. Batter will be stiff. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls 2 inches apart onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes or until golden. Cool on wire racks.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Missionary Photos

Yesterday I dragged Peter, kicking and screaming, down to Union Station to take some pictures. I wasn't really going to do this, but after sending him down to Inkleys and not liking how that all turned out, I decided to give it a try. I'm so glad that I did, because some of these are pretty nice, even with the exceedingly large tie knot, which is a Peter trademark:Pete being Pete, we had a lot of fun:In the end, both of us were happy with how these turned out. :) (Notice how I'm avoiding the fact that this light in my life will be heading out in, um, 6 days. Not going there.)

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

San Fernando Mission

I have always loved the old Spanish missions in California. If there is one close by on our wanderings, I want to see it. The Mission San Fernando Rey de Espana is not too far from where my family lived in Chatsworth, but I don't remember ever going there. I know that when the 1972 earthquake hit, this mission was in danger from a dam that was was in danger of failing. This mission is still in use and houses the main offices for the Catholic church in the area. The grounds are beautiful, with the fattest squirrels I've ever seen!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Name That House!

If you are genetically related to me and are between the ages of 41 and 74, you might be able to identify this house!

Here are some clues:
- It's in the San Fernando Valley in California.
- It might or might not have flammable liquids buried in the side yard.
- It might (or might not!) have a statue of a boy peeing into a pond off the master bath.
- I lived here when I went to Kindergarten- which is why I still remember it's address!

Ok, so this is my family's Chatsworth house. Looks pretty nice, doesn't it? This neighborhood has been revitalized and looks pretty pricey now. Last time I drove by here was about 20 years ago, and there were bars on the windows, so things have definitely improved! I remember a lot about this house and it's yard. I wish I had been brave enough to talk to the people who lived here now, but it was New Year's Eve day, and I didn't dare. I would have loved to have seen the backyard here, to see if it looked anything like I remember it.
We used to call this big grate "The Volcano", because it used to be buried in a bit of a pit. As my siblings can see, the big ball-eating bushes have all been removed. We spent hours playing in this yard. With the snails. And playing Marco Polo in the pool. And climbing on the swing set. And watching McDuff dig the sprinklers up. And seeing the bottlebrush flowers bloom. And thinking Mom's Bird of Paradise flowers were very exotic. And hoping the fires in the hills wouldn't burn out house too. And crowding under the door jams when an earthquake started. Lots of memories...

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Let Them Eat Cake!

We have been lucky enough to be able to stay at the Grand Californian Hotel at Disneyland a few times, and it's always fun to see what kind of view our room has. This time we had a new view that we'd never had before- right out the front of the hotel! We could see the Paradise Pier Hotel over yonder and the GC entrance and fountains below. The Christmas lights were still up, which made it very pretty. Brian and Lindsey came a stayed with us for two nights. When Brian walked in for the first time, he walked to the balcony, took a look at the view and yelled, "Let Them Eat Cake!"

Monday, February 1, 2010

Good Sunday Recipe

This is out of the Jan/Feb '10 Simple and Delicious magazine. Everyone thought it was pretty darn good!

Stroganoff-Style Spaghetti 'n' Meatballs
1/2 lb. uncooked spaghetti
3/4 lb. frozen cooked Italian meatballs. thawed
2 Tbs. finely chopped onion
1 garlic clove, minced
1 Tbs. olive oil
1 can (10-3/4 oz.) Cream of Mushroom (or chicken!) soup, undiluted
1/4 c. milk
1 Tbs. concentrated au jus sauce (found this at Target)
1/8 tsp. Cajun seasoning
1 c. (8oz.) sour cream

Cook spaghetti, according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, saute the meatballs, onion and garlic in oil for 4-5 minutes or until meatballs are browned. Stir in the soup, milk, au jus sauce and seasoning. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 10-12 minutes or until heated through. Gradually stir in sour cream, Heat through but do not boil. Drain spaghetti stir into skillet. Serve immediately.