Saturday, August 27, 2016

Friday, August 26, 2016

Friday night football

We bought a family pass to the high school sports events. Now I feel very suburban. It is a beautiful stadium with a ginormous video screen complete with instant replays of key plays and barbecue sandwiches that the band parents start three hours before the game. I didn't get one but you could smell the smokiness of them behind the stands. 

Emily's new friends from band wanted to hang out at the mall. When I rolled my eyes Emily informed me that hanging out at the mall probably wasn't as cool when I was her age. I agree.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Friday, July 15, 2016


Sometimes when I am in church listening to friends tell about their road trips to Utah, inside I have this conversation with myself.  I tell myself that I am glad I am not driving all that way with my family, that I would go insane driving that long and that it can't be much fun. Then, the other part of me argues that it is a whole lot cheaper than flying that far and that we would rather have that money for other things.  That and flying is no easy feat either with 5 kids.  Someone is always sick, flights are delayed or cancelled, and then we have to rent a car.  In the end it is a draw.  

I think as the kids get bigger and as long as I am able to take two weeks for vacation, painful as it is, driving out west for vacation is going to be part of our summer tradition.  It makes sense, plus it isn't as bad as I fear always.  It is a long drive, and there are fights in the car.  Kids get bored and since everyone has to be buckled (locked in place) people get restless.  Including me. 

Over all it was a nice break.  We went to Fountain Green to visit the Cooks, then went to Provo to visit with Leila's family and go to Neil's wedding.  I never went to Bridal Veil falls as a student, somehow there was always something that I had to do and getting off campus or out of the basement where the lab was seemed almost impossible.  

Southern Utah could be a set for movies on Mars.  The rocks are beautiful, but man I wouldn't want to have to walk across that wasteland.

Fountain Green is so different from Provo and the Valley just an hour away.  The town is tiny and Ag is the dominant industry.  Kids walk their sheep in the evenings to get ready for Lamb Days.  And the Cooks are there so it is our home away from home. 

Saturday, July 09, 2016

Thinking of an animal

The thinking of an animal guessing game just got harder as Becca includes imaginary animals and Pokemon. 

Friday, July 08, 2016

Cyborg swimming robots

Between the police shootings, continued desparate circumstances for refugees across the world, hundreds killed in terrorist bombings and attacks in Iraq,Turkey, and Miami, and then the appalling sniper attacks on cops protecting the black lives matter protesters, there isn't a lot of good news.
Somehow, this BBC story of a tiny swimming robot run by heart cells seems a welcome distraction.

One more photo of Grandma Shirley

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Grandma Shirley

This is how I remember my grandma from my childhood. 

  1. Going to Mexico city together
  2. Staying at Grandma's during the summer as a kid.
  3. Tuna fish sandwiches and icecream
  4. Staying at Sandra's with Bob
  5. Talking about science and ideas with her at the table
  6. Books in her office - sci fi and the Nancy Drew Hardy Boys
  7. Her riding to our house as little kids on her motorcycle with Grandpa
  8. Building nesting boxes with Grandma in Indiana 
  9. Wood turning 
  10. Her showing us as kids that she could take her dentures out
  11. Getting sick at her house
  12. The chickens with the inside out feathers
  13. Black walnuts
  14. Talking to her about my Dad after he died.
  15. Her working on woodworking in the workshop
  16. Using potatoes to attract nematodes in her garden
  17. Going with her on the lawnmower and then watching her bludgeon to death a gopher with a shovel. 
  18. Her in her coat and hat getting irritated people thought she was a little old man
  19. Eating out with Bob and Grandma
  20. Bob in the workshop
  21. Bob and grandma talking to Leila when I first brought her home
  22. Mom and Grandma's excursions 
  23. At my Dad's funeral
  24. The big 90th birthday bash.  
  25. All of the help she gave us when we first came to Boise. 
  26. When Colleen was born while she was visiting in Indiana
  27. Stories about her childhood
  28. Gardening 
  29. MR2
  30. waking up while driving to Nampa as a child in the car and watching the red headlights in front of us working their way up and down the hills along the highway.  Seeing the city stretched out ahead of us like a glowing amoeba along the hill.  
  31. The old house with the porch 
  32. Playing tag with cousins in the yard after Grandpas funeral
  33. Sandra's trailer and her dog with mismatched eyes. 
  34. That time I got sick while staying at her house and she helped me clean up. 
  35. That card game with the board she made for all of us.
  36. Playing scrabble and losing by 80 or 90 points