Saturday, October 29, 2016

Long Time No Post

Well, life got busy after Mom passed away.  So I finally got back to my blog today because I'm again doing NaNoWriMo.  Writing a 50,000 word novel in a month seems do-able this year.  Why?  Because I retired in August.  Yup.  Done and done.  And it feels GOOD.
Here we are at my retirement dinner.  It was a fun evening except for the fact that we were sitting at a table with a woman who believed I was one of the reasons she was forced into retirement against her will.  Of course, I wasn't responsible for it, so the evening had some tense moments.

What are we doing now?  Waiting for our new house to be built up in Oregon!  Yup.  We bought a lot and the house should be started in a few weeks.  It's a lovely one level ranch with 3 bedrooms, 2 baths and a sunroom.  We're furiously packing up while also juggling the paperwork for the purchase and the sale of our existing home.  Fun.  No really, it is.  Here's a look at the outside of the house, though it will be a different color.  I love the covered front porch.  There'll be a covered porch in the back as well for Mike's fabulous barbecues.
Well, now that I'm back to writing, I'll try to keep this up, as I want a record of these first few months of retirement and of the progress we make on the house.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Goodbye, Mom. We love you.

Norma Ruth Johnson Haynes entered the world in Council Bluffs, Iowa on November 6, 1924. Her parents, Dennis and Helen Johnson, were pleased and relieved to have a girl. Her brothers, Denny and Bob, treated her like all brothers do, but she loved them anyway. The family moved to Salt Lake City in 1935.

Norma married Jim Haynes and spent her life caring for Jim, three kids, several pets, a garden, and finally, grandchildren. She was an amazing seamstress who made nearly all the clothes her children wore, even after they became teens and begged her not to. She worked as a teller and for the University of Utah’s Business department. Always happy and positive, she loved telling stories. Many of these were so inspirational that she told them over and over so that they would never be forgotten. Indeed, her family can repeat her stories verbatim and has numbered them for easy reference. She enjoyed traveling with her family and was able to visit Europe, the Caribbean, and Australia, as well as many states. Her favorite place was Hawaii. She could work a hard crossword puzzle in less than an hour and beat the pants off of anyone in a game of cards. In later years she insisted that twos were wild in every game she played, which allowed her to win even more. Even so, she couldn’t seem to beat her grandson at Monopoly as he would place hotels on Boardwalk and Park Place before she could say, “Go directly to Jail.”
Norma baked sinfully good cakes, cookies, and treats with her grandkids. Her specialty was “The Cake,” a red devil’s food cake that won first place at the Utah State Fair two years in a row. And she had the ribbons to prove it.
Norma's life is celebrated by her two daughters and their husbands, Marianne & Rick Norton and Julianne & Michael Paul, her 4 grandchildren and a plethora of relatives and friends. After 89 years, Norma died the way she wanted to - peacefully in her sleep after a short illness. She will be greatly missed.
In lieu of flowers the family suggests a donation to the Alzheimer's Association (

Saturday, April 13, 2013

New and Improved

My little Sony laptop has been a wonderful computer, but with its solid state drive it didn't have much memory and it was mostly used up with the stupid Windows operating system.  So now I have the new and improved Sony with a slightly larger viewing screen (for age-challenged eyes).  And it's pink.  Not the candy pink in the picture above, either, but a very nice, subtle blush pink.  Yeah, I didn't buy it because it came in pink.  It was cheaper than the silver one.  Don't give me that look.  It really was.

And it still runs Windows.  Can't seem to get away from that.  I had the little Sony running Linux with pretty good success until I had to start moving files from home to work and back.  I just couldn't make it work for a number of things.  So here I am back on Windows - 8 this time around.  It's a bit confusing and a bit awkward learning a new computer, but gotta do it.  I'm teaching CORE Academy this summer and I need a computer that will run Microsoft Office. *sigh*  At least it's pink...

Monday, March 18, 2013

Meet My New Best Friend

I can't believe my last post was way back in December.  It's definitely time for an update.  So here it is.  For my three loyal readers, wherever you are...
Mom's having a great deal of trouble remembering to take her meds.  When she first moved into her apartment she was used to taking meds twice a day and was very regular in doing so.  But lately we've kept a closer watch and find that she's skipping doses, and even scarier, doubling up occasionally.  I took over filling the compartments so she couldn't tell me she'd taken them all when, in fact, she just hadn't refilled the thing.  When that didn't help, I started calling her morning and evening to remind her.  She bristled at that.  But now she's on a blood thinner, and it's important she take it properly.  Soooooo we bought her a new toy.  The dispenser we bought has an opaque cover and a LOCK.  I only have to fill it every two weeks.  When the time is up, an annoying alarm sounds and the box rotates the next set of meds into place.  All she has to do is dump them out into her hand and the box resets itself to go off the next time.  So far it is working 100%.  She doesn't hate it nearly as much as she hated me calling her.  After checking up on her a couple of times I felt like doing a little jig around the kitchen "It's working..It's working..."  At least for now she can stay independent.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Santa's Back

Santa made his yearly appearance at our house.  From there he flew (in his blue Prius) to a friend's house where he entertained three little girls.  Mrs. Claus, of course, went with him.  I'm beginning to wonder when these kiddos will stop believing.  I thought they had us figured out this year, but when we mentioned their "Elf on the Shelf" by name there was a gasp and wide eyed excitement.  I explained that Santa keeps track of them through text messages sent by the elf and that she will be heading back up north soon as Utah in summer is just too hot for her.  Another year down, but I can't imagine that ten-year-olds will still be that gullible. 

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Immune System Breakdown

For the past several years those pesky little illnesses like colds, stomach bugs, and strep have pretty much left me alone.  I attribute that to years of on-the-job exposure.  However, this year I've had all three.  In a row.  Within two months.  I. Hate. It.

Well, now I've had them all it should be time for health, wealth, and power, right?

Have a great Thanksgiving.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

We Live in a Pretty Place

Little Cottonwood Canyon September 30, 2012