Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Memorial Day Weekend

This is the dress I wore the week before Mother's Day

This is the one I wore on Mother's Day.

Matt giving Bryce a sky dive.

Carli swimming underwater to Grandpa and Bryce.

The gang catching some rays.

It has been so wonderful having Sue and her family here for the weekend. Todd decided to stay over until today so that he and Dave could go golfing once more. Unfortunately Ryan had to go home early, and I do mean early. He had to leave here at 4:00 a.m. yesterday because of his work. He has such a responsible job as a manager for a large auditing firm. They wanted him to fly home as soon as he could because they were having problems. It was hard for him to even come and the truth is, we were grateful for the time he was able to be here.

The weekend did go by in a whirl, and I think everyone had a good time. There was certainly an abundance of food and fortunately quite a lot of it was eaten. I think we will still have to have friends come to help us eat leftovers. We roasted a turkey and half a ham, and we did pork for tostadas the last day. I don't really like to freeze turkey, so will have to do something with the leftovers as I still have quite a bit left and a person can only eat so many turkey sandwiches.

We will be busy for awhile, as there is a mountain of laundry to do with all the sheets and towels but we will not even try to do it in one day. They are all leaving this afternoon, and it will be a bit lonely until we get used to just having the two of us in the house.

I had Sue help me with the above pictures, and thank heavens we found out that it is not just ourselves that were having all the trouble. Sue had them too, so we know it is our computer that has the glitches that won't let us space properly. I will be glad if and when we ever get our new one. It has been over a month now, and they are sending us a new one. I can only hope that we won't have the problems anymore once the new one is in place.

We actually didn't do a whole lot while they were here. I was sorry that they couldn't come to church with us Sunday, but they had to go to the wedding. Dave's brother's son got married so they were in Orange County most of the day. Of course when they were here, the guys played golf each morning and fortunately we had very mild weather, in the middle 80's, so that was great! Dick, Sue, Dave, Karin, Bob, and I stayed home and just hung out. We did a lot of visiting and reading and just plain resting, altogether not bad at all. It might have been a bit boring for Karin and Bob, but they didn't complain. I think they were just enjoying not having to do anything because they both work pretty hard when they are home. Karin has been working long hours, and Bob has worked seven days a week. They will have that to look forward to when they get home.

Well, I'm off......want to spend a the last couple of hours with Sue before they leave. Dave and Todd should be home fairly soon as they went early. 'Til next Tuesday........................................

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Tuesday Time

I honestly did try to have a decent picture for tonight's post, but for some reason none of the ones Dick took of me were good. I think it is because he is taller than I am and he was standing up when he took it and the result is that my body was all weird, my feet looked too small and my head too large. I will try again next Sunday. I will have him sit down so that he is at my level when he takes it. Anyway, I am just not good at the picture thing, as you all know.

We are in the process of getting ready for our company. Today I made oatmeal cookies because every night before he goes to bed, Dave likes to eat an oatmeal cookie and some non fat milk. When he is home, he buys his cookies at the store, so I like to have plenty of home made ones when he comes here. Yesterday morning Dick cleaned a little more than half the garage. I mean he REALLY CLEANED it. He washed every little thing and even mopped the floor after he had vacuumed all of it. This morning he started at 6:00 a.m. and worked another 3 1/2 hours and it is truly clean. It has been a long long time since it has been this clean. Every once in a while I have to go out there just to take a look. He went to mail our new computer back to the company. as they are replacing it, and he noticed that his neck and shoulders started to feel a certain feeling he gets, so as soon as he got home he used this little gizmo that tells him if he is in a-fib and he was! Darn.........but he took a very long rest and fortunately in a few hours he felt better so he tested it again and he was back in a normal sinus rythmn!!! I am so glad because he really needs to be at the church tonight they are having a special meeting on home teaching and he really wanted to be there.

Yes, I'm on my own tonight. Had I not been, I think I would have had him transfer any picture we have on file just to make this post a little more interesting. I could always post a picture of our little Sullivan, who is growing up so darned fast and is doing so very well. I just can't stand it if I don't get to see him every two or three months. It will be a lot longer than that, I am afraid, unless Kristin brings him here this summer. She is expecting my fifth great grandchild the middle of September and it is a girl!! They really wanted one so we are all excited.

We are having our Johnson family reunion in Salt Lake City September l. My mother would have been 130 years old on Sept. l, so I think that is pretty neat! We had our last one three years ago at Sue's. We have them every three years and I am the youngest in my family, which is the reason we had it at Sue's as it was my turn. She has such a much larger house. It was really a good one and I'm sure this one will be fun too. It is the turn of my oldest brother Byron's children to host this one and their daughter, Virginia, lives in Bountiful so they are having it is Salt Lake. Lucky for me because we will get to stay with our daughter Jayne for awhile. We might even try to stay there until Kristin has the baby. I hope she has it on time, or better still a few days early! I also hope that all of my nieces and nephews will be there, for the reunion, that is.

Well, I do think I've rambled on enough for this time. I hope you are all enjoying the spring. It will soon be over. Summer time here in the desert is a pretty warm place to be. We have actually been having pretty warm weather this past week. It has been from around 104 degrees to about 106. Sue, you will be happy to know that our temperatures will go down on Thursday to 85 and will stay in the 80's for a few days. Our forecast takes us through next Tuesday. Sunday(the day you will be gone for the wedding) it will go to 95 and Monday it will be 103. So you will have only one REALLY hot day. The guys should love the cooler temps for Friday and Saturday though. I never could understand how they could play golf on those hot days.

Take care everyone.........I'll be back next Tuesday. Then I can tell you all about the fun we will have had with our loved ones. I know I will be sad because most of them will go home Monday,
but Sue, Dave and Ryan will leave Tuesday morning. My love to all


Tuesday, May 15, 2012

My Mother's Day .

I'll have to apologize right off to a few people, including my daughter Sue, for forgetting to have Dick take a picture of me when we got home from church Sunday in my new Mother's Day duds. The white skirt was one Sue got for me, and the top was one we went shopping for to go with it. I did get a lot of compliments and I will try to remember the next time I wear it to have Dick take a picture of me. With my memory I won't promise anything, but if I do remember, I will post it, however late it may be.

I did have a very great Mother's Day though. I usually can only go to either Sacrament Meeting or Relief Society. We have Sunday School in the middle so it is very hard, if not impossible for me to sit for the three hours. Our benches in the chapel are way too narrow, so are very uncomfortable for me, and were I to be able to go to Sunday School, I would have to sit on metal folding chairs, which are a total no no for me. In Relief Society it isn't too bad. In fact the best seating of the three, because even if we use folding chairs in there, at least they are padded. I did have a dilemma though because I didn't want to miss Sacrament Meeting because our Bishop was to be the last speaker, and he is SO GOOD, I didn't want to miss it. However, his wife, Sheila, teaches the second Sunday in R.S. and I REALLY didn't want to miss her. I usually go to Relief Society the second Sunday each month as it is always such a great meeting and I need to go at least once a month. They had also decided that instead of passing out the Mother's Day treat in Sacrament Meeting (usually a beautiful flower or chocolates) they were going to do it in Relief Society. So, after sitting through Sacrament Meeting (so worth it) I was just too sore and knew I would have to go home and ice my back, they gave me my treat to take home. When we got there, I opened this beautiful beribboned box to find a huge lunch. The young men and women had made the lunch and put it together. This beautiful box contained a large chicken salad sandwich that had sliced grapes and nuts in it, (yummy) in a big croissant, two huge strawberries, a bag of chips, a cake with fudge all the way around it, and a bottle of water. I iced my back while Dick split the lunch (plenty for two) and we ate our lunch while my back was getting back to "normal" in my wonderful chair. After eating our lunch, I decided to go back to Relief Society. So I put another icy gel pack on my back and off we went. I was so glad I did go because the lesson was excellent! The young men and women came in with the beautiful boxes for all the women and everyone had lunch as Sheila gave her lesson. They tried to get me to eat another one, but I was already stuffed. It's no wonder almost everyone took most of their lunch home.

We had a restful couple of hours before eating a big prime rib dinner, which Dick ordered for me from The Outback. He picked it up and it was nice and hot and most delicious. For dessert, we had some chocolate brownie cake that Sue had ordered sent to me from some place in Pennsylvania. It was excellent! The whole day was really a nice one because all of my children called me, plus two of my grandchildren!!! I especially loved that as you might guess.

So now you have heard all about my Mother's Day and I hope all of you mothers had a wonderful day too!

P.S. I told Dick that the next time he saw the Bishop, he would have to tell him not to give a talk on the same day that Sheila was giving her lesson as it was much too hard on me!!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Time Once Again

Yes, it is that time again friends and I must say I don't have much to blog about. It has been a very quiet week. I didn't go to church Sunday, although I almost went. One of my good friends called me on Saturday wanting to know how I was doing and I told her I was planning to go to Sacrament Meeting and she advised me not to go. It's funny, she and I have so many identical health problems. She hadn't gotten bronchitis yet and I hope she doesn't get it. But she advised me to stay home one more week and go on Mother's Day. She said she knew that I wasn't contagious but that she was afraid that I might catch another bug. I just don't know why people go to church when they are sick. I can't tell you how many times Dick has gotten sick from someone in the Bishopric in their meetings, and then brought it home for me to catch. I guess some people think that being in the Bishropric, they just HAVE to come as the meeting wouldn't likely go right unless they were there. Maybe that is a bit harsh, but anyway, my friend, Beth, made me promise that if I did decide to go that I would wear a surgical mask to protect myself from getting any new germs. After we hung up, I did give it a lot of thought, and even though I did have a few surgical masks, I decided it would be best if I stayed home. I am going to go for the Mother's Day program though. Our Bishop is one of the speakers, and he is wonderful. I am so glad I don't have to miss his talk.

Dick has gone to his meeting tonight, so I am all alone with my thoughts. I asked him if he had any suggestions as to what I should blog about tonight and he said, "Why don't you do one of your prize recipes. You haven't done one for awhile. I actually decided that it was a good idea. But you know what? I have done my very favorite ones already. The one that keeps coming to my mind is my favorite Ranch Dressing. Because it is starting to get pretty warm now, we are eating quite a few salads. This dressing is also great on vegetables, any kind of cooked veggies you might be having with a meal. It is very tasty and the reason I love it so much is that it is very very low calorie. Everyone that has it at my house wants the recipe, so even though you haven't had it at my house (well, maybe some of you locals who NEVER comment on my blog, but read it regularly, have had it) here it is:

Darlene's Ranch Dressing

1 quart Knudsen's buttermilk
1 cup Best Food's mayonnaise
1/2 envelope of Knox gelatin (about one teaspoonful)
1 envelope Hidden Valley Ranch seasoning (buttermilk recipe), only I use my own.
1 teaspoon garlic powder
2 teaspoons onion powder
2 teaspoons cracked pepper
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon dried basil

Put 1 teaspoon Knox geletin in medium size saucepan. Add 1 cup buttermilk. Stir on LOW heat just until gelatin is barely melted. Add remaining buttermilk, mayonnaise and seasonings. Stir well. Store in refrigerator in covered container. This will last about a month. Unless you have a large family............The wonderful thing about this dressing is that it is only 26 calories a Tablespoon and a Tablespoon goes a long long way, unless you are like my husband, who loves this stuff so much that he drowns his salad in it, then eats all that's left by the spoonful after the salad is gone!

I hope you will all try this, even if you aren't concerned about the calories. It goes with any kind of salad. Although, I have never tried it with a fruit salad and don't think I will, but I have put mandarine oranges in my vegetable salad and it is good with that, so who knows? Don't think I will be trying it at any time soon though.

Thanks again to all of you who have sent emails........I really am feeling a little better every day, but I've been told this cough could go on for another month yet. I'm just so glad that I didn't have to go on that intravenous vancomycin. This whole thing started just 3 weeks and 6 days ago. It seems like a lot longer. Take care all of you and stay well!!!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Another Tuesday

I'm going to try to post another picture of the flowers I arranged from two of my birthday arrangements, one I posted last week that were sent me from my Dallas neices and the other was a dozen long stemmed red roses. I had to take all the flowers out from both vases because the roses died. I started all over because the stems had to be recut on the bottoms so that the water would absorb into the flowers again. It really works to change the water each day too. I used a lot of greenery from the roses and put them all in the smaller vase. Okay, so now I will have to admit a little known secret. I used to do flower arranging professionally. When we lived here in the desert, our best friends owned the Palm Springs Florist. So every holiday daughter Nancy and I would work in the shop, Nancy answering phones and waiting on customers and I arranging flowers. I loved it, but my family never knew what it was to have me home for ANY of the holidays. Even when we moved back to the Los Angles area, I traveled back here for all of the holidays, barely getting home in time for the day, Christmas Day, Thansgiving Day, Easter etc. That went on for many years. In fact, I can't remember when I actually stopped doing it!!! It was some time after my first husband (the father of my children) and I divorced. In fact, strangely, today would have been our 67th anniversary had we stayed married! He left me the evening of Nancy's wedding reception. He brought his girl friend to it and a couple of hours into the evening, he went upstairs and gathered all his clothes and stuff and left........that was the beginning of her marriage and the end of ours. Actually, he did me the greatest thing ever, because I would never have left him on my own, and many good things happened after, like meeting Dick and having a whole different kind of life.

I must say, today I finally decided I was getting a little better and to celebrate that, I had Dick take me birthday shopping. We left the house around 11:00am and we didn't get home until almost 5:00p.m. We did have a nice long lunch in between though or I don't think Dick would ever have made it. He had to push me in my wheel chair most of the time, but I did go into one store walking. If I had known I would have had to walk so long, I would have skipped it, but who knew I wouldn't be able to get one of those electric gizmos to ride at Target. It was the first time I experienced having them all taken. Two were being charged and the others were all gone. I did get a lot of walking in and had to hang on to Dick so it wasn't that great for him. He was exhausted too by the time we got home. I was fairly successful thoough. I got a very pretty blouse to wear with my white skirt that Sue sent me for no reason other than the fact that she knew I had been looking for one for a long time. I also got a polo shirt, a new bra and some candy. We also did a little grocery shopping and went to a drug store. I got my clothes at Kohl's and I have to tell you, I honestly hate that store!!! It has way too much merchandise, there are so many clothes that are either sleeveless, straps only or barely there clothes. I guess it wouldn't be so bad if you were just browsing, but if you are looking for something specific, it's totally awful. Dick absolutely hates to go there too. I was looking for things I saw in their Sunday advertising. There were about five other things I rejected when I saw them, mostly because they didn't fit right. I got so tired of trying on clothes. I just didn't have enough energy to try another store. I used to have it so made when Jayne worked at Mervyn's. I would do my major shopping once a year and I would just sit in the try on room and Jayne would bring me all the things to try on. She has such a great sense of style and she really is a whizz at coordinating. I will have to go back to doing that again this summer because she will be the store manager of a brand new Marshall's opening just about ten minutes from where she lives. She has been commuting about an hour each morning to the very first Marshall's store in Utah, where she has been training to manage the new store in Murray. I can't remember the name of the town, but it is the next one after Bountiful, north of Salt Lake. They start working to stock the store in Murray today and it will have their grand opening on May 19th. She will be so happy to have her own store again. She does love working in retail, but oh, the hours she has had to work.

My goodness, I thought this would be a very short post, but look what has happened. Time for me to stop. Until next Tuesday, thanks to all of you for all the cards and messages sent my way, not only for my birthday, but for me to get well. Love..................Darlene