Monday, November 24, 2008

Mystery Bird & Renovation

We're accustomed to seeing birds in our back yard, but this one was a surprise. We quickly took a photo through the blinds, and the not-so-clean window obscures the view, but we think it's a hawk of some kind. He quickly disappeared, and we haven't seen him/her since. Pat has wanted an island in the kitchen ever since we moved in, and the job is now complete except mounting the hardware and a final coat of varnish. We are loving it!

Since we were getting granite on the island, we had granite installed in the master bath for a very good price--we're now wishing we had done both bathrooms. Anyway, here are before and after photos of that project:

Sunday, November 16, 2008

At Our Age, Good Times Are Even Better

When we bought our first home in Taylorsville, Utah, back in 1971, we became close friends with many couples in the Taylorsville 15th ward. We still get together quarterly with a small group of those people. Our conversation now consists mainly of our latest ailments, our children and grandchildren, and stories. Those stories probably get repeated from gathering to gathering, but it's okay, because we've forgotten that we already told them!!!

Lyle Elmore, Ron Rash, Pat, Cindy Peterson, Linda Elmore Jenienne White (sitting), and Charlie White. At the moment, Carl and Lynn were at the stove being chefs
Our great friend, Vic Manwaring, drives down from Buhl, Idaho, to these gatherings. His wife, Uvene, passed away unexpectly two years ago, so one our group assignments is to find him a new companion!
Kathy and Ron Rash, with Cindy Peterson in the background directing us in a game. Cindy, the youngest of our group works hard to keep us actively involved in something besides comparing ailments!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Pumpkin Carving-Pros and Cons

Let's face it--carving pumpkins is one thing, but the prep work can be very yucky. Parker would have absolutely nothing to do with pulling out the "guts." The photographer was laughing so hard (but not out loud) at the disgusted looks on his face, that the camera wouldn't hold still!!

Now Carson, on the other hand, loved getting into the gushy, slimy stuff more than the actual carving.
Grandpa really did help with the cleaning out, but his favorite part was holding this little monkey. How can you resist this kid, when he gazes up at you with those huge, light blue eyes! His little tummy shows evidence of the great meal that prefaced the pumpkin activity. Carrie had made homemake cheese soup, homemade rolls, and caramel apples. A downright domesticated diva she has become!!!

While all the indoor activity was taking place, Carl and Sam were working on finishing the stair rails for the deck. We'll save that, however, for another blog!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Another Wedding and a Birthday

This has been quite a weekend!! The last three weekends we have been at a wedding--Tracie, Susan's sister, in the Idaho Falls Temple; then Kim's cousin, Kinsey, in the botanical gardens of the Indianapolis, Indiana, zoo; then this weekend in Taylorsville, Utah, at the Majestic Meadows clubhouse. You can't say we don't have diversity in our family...

Prior to the wedding, however, we also got to celebrate Paul's 50th birthday!! I was going to post a photo of him blowing out the candles on his lemon meringue birthday pie, but this one is much, much better! I've never seen Paul's smile so wide as when he is with "his friend," Mary Hansen. Dare I say on a blog how much we love Mary?...She is fun, funny, and seemed to take all the craziness of the weekend in stride!

Here is the happy couple, Cheryl (formerly Barney) and Morris Bell.
Morris' oldest daughter, Elizabeth, friend Amy, and son Trevin. Trevin was the ringbearer (carried down the aisle by Elizabeth).
We got a kick out of this photo. The clubhouse where the wedding and reception were held had been decorated with Halloween decorations prior to the festivities. Someone forgot to remove this poster over the gift table, however!
Here's a cheesy threesome--Pat, Barb, and Paul
This is our mother's brother, Dayle Dunkley, and his wife Verdeana. They came down from Pocatello, Idaho where they now live with their daughter.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Indiana 2008

Our annual fall trip back to Indiana was as much fun as ever. There is non-stop action/fun/drama/trauma/craziness/you-name-it back there. Mike, Kim, Courtney, and Camilla always make us feel welcome, as do the Priebes and the Prices (Kelly--Kim's sister--and Greg). The weather was absolutely fantastic, which was even better because we missed the snow in Utah that weekend.

Here's the foursome right after Courtney's choir concert. She is quite the talented little musician! Mike always has a project he and his dad can work on...this time it was setting the posts for a new fence.
Camilla has a new cat--Franny. She's darling, but she's in jeopardy--the day after we came home Mike tripped over the cat, then Camilla's bicycle and sprained his ankle.
It's a tradition that Courtney and Grandma make/cook something when we come to visit. This time it was "fairy fudge" from a cookbook Shandy and Curtis gave Courtney for Christmas. It turned out mighty fine. We even had a "secret ingredient"...marachino cherry juice to make the fudge pink!
One of the reasons we chose this weekend to go back was because Kinsey Priebe, Kim's cousin, was getting married. Courtney and Camilla were junior bridesmaids. Kim was matron of honor and head wedding planner, and Michael was best man. The wedding was held at the Indianapolis Zoo botanical gardens, and it was a beautiful setting.

Theresa and Kent Priebe with their newly married daughter, Mrs.Kinsey P. O'Connell.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Take Me Away...

We just spent an incredible five days with some very close friends. We've been friends with Ron and Kathy Rash, Lynn and Cindy Peterson for a long time. We've been bragging about the beauty of the San Juan Islands in the Pacific Northwest for many years and had a chance to take them there! We all flew to Seattle, rented a Suburban, and had a blast! We did the touristy stuff--Pike's Place market, the Troll, Archee McPhee's, and Snoqualmie Falls. Daurell and Jana knew many of Rash's family and were kind enough to put us up for the night. The weather was spectacular, so Daurell drove us all around Lake Sammamish on his boat. Meanwhile, Jana had prepared one of her great meals for us. Next morning we drove up to Anacortes and boarded the ferry to Lopez Island.
Our friends, Steve and Jacque Bumstead, have property on the island and have built a "cabin" on the water there. The Bumsteads treated us royally and took us around to just about every inch of the island. The guys went out along the shore and pulled oysters off the rocks, and Steve roasted them over the fire. The entire time the weather was perfect.. On Sunday we attended phone-in church services. A whole other story...
The above photo is our favorite view from the cabin overlooking what we call Bumstead Bay
Great place with a kitchen to die for!
A favorite place for lunch and browsing is the Lopez Island Pharmacy with its old fashioned soda fountain counter. Jacque and Steve are on the left. One happy group!

This plaque was a surprise to Carl. The first time we visited the Bumsteads' old cabin, Carl had just had surgery on his hands for carpal tunnel, and sat and read a book the entire time we were there. Steve and Jacque decided then and there that the new cabin would have a room dedicated to him; thus there is a small library in the turret, and many visitors bring a book to donate.

Steve and Ron say they really love oysters--hard to believe, but all the guys at least tried the ugly little critters.

Clarks, Petersons, Rashes (we call ourselves the CPRs)

We didn't want to leave and are ready to go back, although our kids would disown us if we went without them next time.

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Fall Means Apples

Carl's oldest brother, Les, still lives on the old home place in Menan, Idaho where Carl was raised. There are still two transparent apple trees left in what used to be a whole orchard. They produce apples every other year, and this was the year. Here is the result of the one bushel of transparent apples Les and Gay picked for us... We started the process at 6:45 last night and were completed finished and cleaned up by 9:45. Guess you could say we are quite a team!

The weather was perfect for doing applesauce in the Victorio mill out on the deck (the deck will be finished eventually, we just know).
Don't let anyone ever tell you that steam canners aren't the way to can. I wouldn't do it any other way and have been using one for years!There's nothing more rewarding than seeing full bottles of home canned goods on our food shelves. Yield of one bushel of apples was 26 pints.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Chili Sauce & Wedding Bliss

This chili sauce recipe has become a favorite of ours. I tasted this chili sauce about the first time we visited Ellis and Vera Oram (Sharon's new in-laws at the time). I begged Vera for the recipe, and we've been canning it ever since. We started the process on Labor Day (aptly so, by the way), and finished after work tonight. Our yield: 13 pints and 15 half pints. That should do us for a couple of years or so. So there you go--the exciting life of Carl and Pat!
Now, more photos of the Cody/Meridith wedding. I'm bummed that we didn't get a picture of Glendon and LaNay Manwaring who came down from Pleasant View. It was their 44th wedding anniversary. LaNay raided the kitchen to get some pieces of red velvet cake to take with them to their bed and breakfast (they had reserved it in Provo so they could attend the reception). Red Velvet cake was served at their wedding reception those many years ago.

First kiss as Mr. & Mrs.

Two more lovebirds.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Great Notes and Views

Last weekend when Darren's family was down, I tended grandsons while the "big kids" went to the movie. All the boys went to sleep in timely fashion, but Dexter would have nothing to do with that. Curtis and Shandy assured me that he would go right down...ha! Dexter and I had a wonderful time, however, reading stories, playing with helicopters, the toy train, barn, cars, etc. When his folks got home about midnight we were out on the front steps to greet them, Dexter just as wide-eyed as he could be.
The next night as we were preparing for another get-together, the doorbell rang, and Dexter came running in with a bouquet of flowers and note for Grandma. It was absolutely adorable, and I had to share this cute note! I loved having Dexter bring it, but also loved the thoughtfulness of Dexter's mom!
One of the things I'm going to miss (when I retire) about working on the top floor of the Church Office Building is the incredible view. The Utah State Capitol is, in my opinion, the most beautiful state capitol of those I have seen. This is my view out the north side of our floor around 7:30 a.m. just as the sun is coming up.

The state capitol has been closed for the past few years to be retrofitted to be earthquake resistant (or whatever the term is meaning it shouldn't fall down if/when an earthquake hits). They jacked the building up and put fittings underneath. I can't even imagine undertaking such a project. It reopened this spring. We're looking forward to taking a tour of it soon.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Rottweilers--the family, not the dog!

Darren, Susan, Kevin, Ethan, and Jacob joined us up at Stoddard Creek campground north of Idaho Falls for the annual Rottweiler Family Reunion. Since Carl's Aunt Edna just died a couple of weeks ago at age 97, that makes his brother, Les, the oldest in the Rottweiler clan at age 81!

We truly are a winning family...all three of Darren and Susan's boys won their choice of soda pop in some kids' games (this cute little girl in yellow wanted to be in every photo--not sure who she is); Darren and Carl both won huge jars of jelly beans and Skittles for coming the closest to number of pieces in the jar (Carl was only 3 jelly beans under!). Kevin won marbles and Ethan glow sticks in a silent auction, and Pat bid all the way up to $8.00 to win a dancing Santa Claus!!

The main dish for the lunch was a pig that had been roasted in a huge barbecue-type drum. Jacob would have nothing to do with it..."that pig's dead, and it's been in the dirt...yuck!" (That's a direct quote by the way.)

Monday, July 28, 2008

Where Did July Go #2

Another party at Curtis and Shandy's. Darren and Susan were down for a family reunion with the Bartholomews, so we created a mini Clark reunion...

Curtis and his drink of choice

Grandpa has borrowed Kevin's ukelele while Darren is asking, "why can't I straighten out my arm?!"
Vegging out on the patio watching the kids play--now this is living!

Dex the happy driver
Oh, and we are now the proud owners of a Nintendo Wii, and we are loving it.
I think Carl has the drums figured out; Sam's doing the vocal; Carrie is figuring out the guitar--her specialty.

Where Did July Go?!

This month went by in such a blur--hmmm, what did we accomplish?! Who cares, we had some fun, and that's what counts when you get to our age.

A big share of the free time was spent trying to make progress on the deck. Here's Carl wondering where to nail the next board.
Great friends, Lynn and Cindy Peterson at a SL Bees game during Pioneer Days. It was blazing hot (does that bring back memories of a Mariners game two years ago, anyone?!).
A couple of classy sports fans.

Hiking up to Hidden Falls-Cameron slept through it all. I found the most interesting rock right at this spot...Speaking of sleeping.....