Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Safe and warm

Today is Halloween, so I'll just start by saying, "Happy Halloween!" I actually considered doing a post on being grateful for Halloween, but there are other, more important issues I am grateful for today...

 Hurricane Sandy (unfortunately it's named Sandy) struck with a vengeance on the East coast, with a 900 mile radius. Crazy. Fortunately the hurricane portion of the storm lessened, and just became a 'noreaster' or 'monster' storm...however you choose to view it. The point is that it could have been so much worse. Don't get me wrong, the toll it took was very, very bad. People are left without homes. Many lives were lost. The Jersey shore (part of their needed economy - tourism) has vanished. I saw one reporter standing on sand, on what appeared to be level ground. It was a pool that had filled with sand. Flooding was everywhere. It will be some time before the NY subway system will be up and running. One neighborhood went up in fire. I'm certain I am only covering a few of the many tragedies that struck, but those were what I witnessed on TV.

 I, along with many others in this great nation we live in, prayed for and continue to pray for those in need, in desperation. I wish I could invite them into my home, give them a soft bed to sleep on, and a warm meal. But, I live thousands of miles away from them, and cannot assist in this way. So prayers, money, that is all I can offer.

 And on the flip side of that - I can offer my gratitude to our Father for the safety and warmth our family, and others I love and care about, are enjoying right this minute. Our grandchildren will go trick or treating tonight, without cause for concern. They will go home to their soft beds, with food in their tummies, and smiles on their faces, and in their hearts. I am grateful for that. I am grateful they are not in harm's way, and that they truly can enjoy their Halloween.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Red tape

By now you're aware that my mom has moved in. With her move comes several challenges ...the most important was tackling her insurance/Medicare. So much to do! The past few weeks I've talked with insurance reps and thought I was on the right track. Until today. I had hoped to get her into Rachel's former doctor, only to discover that he isn't taking Medicare patients. So, I called Social Security to see if they had any idea of what course to follow. They referred me to some California health/insurance department. They didn't answer. At that point I decided to call Kaiser, just to look into it. When I told mom the info she said she wanted Kaiser for her insurance. Seeing as how her insurance doesn't cover her in our area and she'd be paying for it on the first we acted quickly. After spending an hour on the phone with Kaiser, then calling Medicare and Social Security, I am grateful to be done with ALL that red tape!!! I'm ready for a vacation!

Monday, October 29, 2012


This morning I was thinking about a person in my life. This person has a difficult time dealing with life. They are incapable of seeing the sunshine on a cloudy day, all they see are the clouds. It is sad to me, that this person experiences life that could have easily been me that has that take on life.

I am grateful that I have been blessed to see the sunshine through the clouds. Yes, I may have moments where the sun is not shining that strongly for me to see, but through the help of the Spirit, and those that love me, I do see that sunshine...almost always. Not only am I grateful for that blessing, but I am deeply humbled by it.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Primary children

The past few years I've missed our Primary Sacrament meeting program. Today I was delighted, and grateful, to be there for this year's program. It was fun to see how well they did. It did cause me to regret that we aren't able to see our grandchildren when they participate in their programs. At least I can be grateful for our ward's!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

New Beginnings

Mom is safely here now. She is sleeping in the comfort of her new room. We had a really good chat all the way down from Sacramento...which is amazing, and always something to be grateful for!

This morning as I was getting ready to go up and get her and her belongings I began thinking about various places we've moved to... and the blessings that came from each of those moves. Two of my favorite places that we have lived as a family were, unfortunately, short-lived.

The first was Paradise, CA. (though I had lived there with my parents previously). We loved it there. Paradise truly is all it's name implies. We were only able to live there for two years. Fortunately, Amy has the good fortune of being able to claim being born in Paradise! That's a fun one for her.

The second was Idaho Falls, ID. Surprisingly, I fell in love with living there. We made many amazing friends, were able to be in a great ward, and the girls loved school there. There really was absolutely nothing negative about being there. As luck would have it, after 911 happened the work that Pat's company was promised by the government was halted. So, we had to leave the area, and move back here. It took me several years to get over that one.

As I look back at the many moves we've made, I truly do see blessings coming from each of them. I am grateful that we could move my mom in with us, and for the new beginnings she will experience, even at age 86 (87 in January!).

Friday, October 26, 2012


Tomorrow my mom moves in with us. Things have been hectic getting everything in order. They finally are! All we have left to do is pick up the truck, pack it up, bring her and her belongings here, and then we are finished. I am grateful things are in order.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

For the love of service

Amy has the stomach flu...poor thing. Rach was so sweet and took her some tapioca (what most of us like when we are sick). While texting with Ames today she asked if I had ever been sick when they were little. I told her I had. It made me remember a time when I had pneumonia and Pat was busy with work and being Bishop. It was Spring break so the kids were home. The boys were off being adventurous while the girls chose to stay home and take care of me, and everything they could do in the house. They were ten and almost twelve. That service continues to melt my heart. I will forever be grateful to those that willingly serve others.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012


When Rach was last here she went through all of her belongings...pretty much. We have bags and boxes of things to donate. Pat insisted on donating them to DI, and gratefully, the DI truck was deposited at our Stake Center last night. So, tonight, instead of attending our Ward Halloween Party, we are going to be taking Rachel's, and our, donations to the DI truck. (and doing some hometeaching) Thank goodness!

On another note, I really am grateful for DI (Deseret Industries) for the many blessings that company gives to others, including (sometimes) members of our family. I remember when our kids were growing up I always felt guilty doing any shopping there, since I figured there were others with greater needs than ours. So, on occasion we would shop there, but not much. I am also grateful for the employment opportunities they give to others that might otherwise be glossed over, and unable to find employment.

All in all, DI is a win/win.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012


One of our friends is quite talented. She has had many trials lately and we have done our best to "be there" for her. Even though she has experienced many difficulties she still found time to do something for us. We didn't expect, or ask, for anything in return, but we are grateful for her kindness, and the love she shows us. She is an amazing person, and I believe there are great blessings in store for her.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Baby,it's cold outside!

Oh, the weather outside was frightful...or should I say delightful? Today fall wasn't just in the air, it was everywhere! Pat and I drove to Sacramento, him for a meeting, me to see my mom to assess what size truck we'll need to move her in this coming Saturday. All day it rained off and on, and was it windy! So windy, in fact, there were tornadoes in Elk Grove, and near Oroville!! (Grateful no one was hurt) I am grateful for this change in weather. LOVE IT!!!

Sunday, October 21, 2012


My goodness, time has sure flown by! I cannot believe that one year ago today we were meeting little Jack for the first time! Before we even knew it we were calling him Jack-Jack! I was talking to Amy about this little guy the other day, telling her what a happy boy he is. Sure, he has his moments where he wants his mommy, as she walks by and he is heartbroken. Or, those moments when he is starving to death and needs food...NOW. But, overall, he is one of the chubbiest, happiest, cutest little guys ever. He is loving and sweet.  We are certainly blessed to have him as (currently) our youngest grandchild.

Happy 1st Birthday Jack! You are loved so very much.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Strong arms

Today has been moving day while we prepare for my mom to move in next Saturday. Thankfully, Pat has strong arms, since I do not. He is doing 95% of the work, and for that I am truly grateful. Here is what we have done thus far:
- Moved the twin bed (after covering in plastic) to the storage shed
- Moved many boxes to the storage shed (as we weeded through them, giving much away)
- Moved the queen bed to the 'study'
- Moved the computer/desk to the 'study'
- Washed and dried 3 loads of bedding
- Emptied the dresser to be moved to the 'study'
- Stepped on Missy's tail...oops, and 'meowwrrrr'!
- Sorted through all the toys, moving them to the shed (found the missed Brontosaurus and a good deal of toys the kids would have loved having out last week!)

 We only have a little left to do for today (and may I say how grateful I am to have my computer on again?), like moving the dresser and nightstand to the study. Then Pat will mow the lawn, I will give his hair a nice trim, he will work on his talk for tomorrow morning (why, hello Ripon ward!), and we will grab a bite to eat.

What a busy, productive day. I'm so grateful for Pat, he works so hard on our behalf, all the time. :)

Friday, October 19, 2012

Cute kids

Our grandkids are pretty adorable. Seriously. A few things have happened that give me cause to make such a statement. First, Sadie as a pirate - too cute. Rylee missing her front tooth - priceless (except for the tooth fairy!) Lucas waking Craig up to find out what Batman uses his Batman gloves for - so adorable! And then there's James - who, when he got up early this morning, who was on his mind? His grandparents ..."I love him. I love him. I love her. I love her." How grateful for each one of my grandchildren -they all tug at my heart.

Thursday, October 18, 2012


A few days ago I contemplated not having this blog any longer, and just continuing to write my grateful moments down for myself. Gratefully, two of our children, Craig and Amy, lent their support. I know the others read it as well, and I am grateful they do (probably not Sam, but Linzi does!). I am hopeful that this blog does serve to make one contemplate what they are grateful for. It's not for the number of viewers, as I eluded to the other day...which was wrong of me. Really, what it boils down to, is me taking the time to voice what I am grateful for, which keeps me in check.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012


When Amy was here we bought towels and ribbon to make hooded towels for the grandkids when they visit. Things were a bit more hectic than we thought they'd be, so Amy made one while she was here. I finished making the other two today. :)

I am grateful for: 1) the site from Pinterest where the instructions are shared, 2) my ability (and Amy's) to use a sewing machine, and figure out the towel structure, and 3) my sewing machine. I love it.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Successful surgery

Pat found a basal cell carcinoma on his nose in the beginning of August that seemed to have 'sprouted' overnight. He finally was able to go to the dermatologist yesterday and have it removed. Thankfully, the DR was able to remove it with the first incision. I am very grateful that it wasn't more serious, and that he is fine...other than a little discomfort, a large bandage, and the beginnings of a possible black eye. :)

Monday, October 15, 2012

Full house

Our home is quiet. I miss the noise, the toys, the food prep, the fun...of having a full house. There were SO many moments when I would just stop whatever I was doing and grab one of my grandchildren, hug and kiss them (except for Gav, who is two, and very independent), and express my love for them. We don't have nearly enough time with all our children, our time together is precious. Yesterday when we said "goodbye" to the last of the departers, we went inside, viewed the chaos, quickly found some left behind items, sat on the couch, and then the tears came. Poor Pat, he misses everyone so very much. I am grateful for the full house we had, even if it was only for a short time.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

to blog or not...

I feel like my blog is a bit blah... perhaps a reflection of my life, right? At any rate, I am considering quitting it. I went from having quite a few look at it to nearly none. I mean, 2 views this past week? I can continue writing for myself about the things I am grateful for, so that is fine, I don't need a blog to record being grateful.

I am grateful for the time I've spent on this blog, and how much it has helped me get through some trials. Being grateful has become more ingrained in me, and if it has offered nothing else, that is enough for me. I am still debating, but this is what I am thinking. And to continue along that thought, I am also considering quitting Facebook,  no special reason.

There you have it. You may, or may not, see me on here again.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Horses, Horses, Horses

In the movie, "Sleepless in Seattle", when Meg Ryan Annie Reed is driving to her family's home on Christmas Eve, merrily listening to Christmas music on the radio she sings along to "Sleigh Ride". In the background the singers sing, "Horses, horses, horses", which she sings along to. I have no idea why but that is one of the few 'quotes' that comes to my mind when I think of that movie.

Today we were able to go to Jim and Chris's (Brad's parent's) ranch where Angie, Craig, Lucas and Darci were able to ride their horses. The kids all loved running around on their property, and of course, riding the horses. It's so sweet of Chris and Jim to let us come and take our grandkids to have a horse-experience! I remember taking Rylee there when she was ten months old, and how much she loved it.

I am grateful, as always, for the generosity of Jim and Chris, and for Brad taking the time to take his in-laws out there. :)

Friday, October 12, 2012

Full day

We took a day trip to one of our favorite places today - Apple Hill. The kids have always loved going there and it was fun to share it with Angie this year! We had a very full day, leaving later than hoped for, going to only two of our favorite apples places, topped off with James slamming the car door on his thumb. :( After that we decided we wouldn't be able to take the time to go and see Grandma Breed; we were all disappointed. Then we headed home, to celebrate Jack's first birthday (the 21st!)

I am grateful for a full day with family. It might be exhausting, but it's worth every second.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Hugging Cousins

It has been nearly three years since Craig and Amy have seen one another. There have been three children born in the meantime - Craig and Angie had Darci last August; Amy and Brad had Gavin two August's ago, and Jack last October. This morning Craig, Angie, Lucas and Darci arrived at our home, after a long night on the road, at 6:30. All four of them were awake, while Amy's family slept. Finally, around 8 AM, Craig and Angie decided it was time to get some sleep. Brad was up so he and I would watch Lucas and Darci. A little while later James and Gav came out of the room they were sleeping in, holding hands (how cute is that?). When they saw Lucas and Darci and said 'hi' they went and gave Lucas a hug. At one point in time during the day James and Lucas had to make up (who remembers why, not me!), so they hugged, then Gav came over, and Lucas was hugging both of them at the same time.

So, so precious!

It is great to have them here, I am grateful to have them here... only 6 other members of our family are missing, and definitely missed.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Good talks

Yesterday I was able to talk on the phone with Linzi for an hour and a half. It'd been awhile so we had some catching up to do. Plus, they've had some trials lately and it was good to hear that they were doing okay. Sometimes a mom/mom-in-law/grandma needs to know what is going on in the lives of her family...that'd be me. :)

I am grateful we could talk, it just made me feel happy.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Yummy Cookies!

Brad, Amy and boys headed north to visit with Neil and his family in Elk Grove today. I had a little bit of time to myself so I decided to bake some cookies for their return. I tried this amazing recipe posted on Our Best Bites on Monday...super yummy. I've been trying various chocolate chip oatmeal cookies for years, in hopes of finding a really good great one. I finally did! I am so grateful I did and I know they are going to love them...especially Pat.

If you are interested in making them go to're gonna love them! (I chose to not make them giant, just because!)

Just to make it easier for you, here is the recipe. :)

Giant Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
Recipe from The Best Bake Sale Cookbook
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
1 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour, lightly spooned into measuring cups and leveled with a knife (very high altitudes may want to try adding 2 additional tablespoons of flour)
1 cup quick-cooking oats
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt (or 3/4 teaspoon table salt)
3 cups (or 18 ounces) chocolate chips (I used the big Ghirardelli milk chocolate chips and don’t think I wouldn’t be above using those chocolate chunks you can get in the baking aisle…)
Preheat oven to 325. If desired, line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone mats.
Beat the softened butter, sugar, and brown sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla and mix until combined.
In a separate bowl, combine the dry ingredients (except the chocolate chips). Add to the butter/sugar/egg mixture and mix until combined. Add the chocolate chips and mix until just combined.
Using a 1/4 cup ice cream scoop, drop the dough by the scoopful onto the prepared baking sheets. You should be able to get about 6 cookies per sheet. Bake in the preheated oven for 12-15 minutes or until they begin to turn light brown around the edges. Remove from the oven and cool for 5 minutes and then transfer to a wire cooling rack and cool completely (or don’t…no shame…) Makes 18 giant cookies. If you’re feeling more modest, you can always use a smaller cookie scoop.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Missy is calmer

Our cat, Missy, usually always freaks out when the kids visit. She has a hard time with little ones. For some reason she has become more patient. It's practically a miracle. She still hangs out in our bedroom when the kids are here, but she has learned to tolerate a small degree of petting. As long as no one is squealing at her, or chasing after her, she seems to be fine. (Well, a tiny bit anxious, but nothing like she used to be.)

I am grateful she has become calmer in her old age (13 years), and hope it continues to be that way whenever the kids/ visit.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Human alarm clock

Typically when I spend the night at Amy's home I am awakened by James, as he slowly opens the door, and happily creeps over to my bed. Soon he has crawled into bed with me for a few minutes of snuggle time. Before I am fully awake he asks for my hand so that we can go downstairs together and play or watch something on PBS. Early this morning he came in and joyfully climbed into bed with us. He had his Papa and Nana together!! Life doesn't get much better than that! Soon we were out in the great room playing with swords (since James is actually a knight), Papa was his foe that he'd stab, then roll/jump away from, only then needing to be rescued by Nana! Then, being the kind knight that he is, he'd give Papa a hug and kiss to help him recover from his serious injury. Oh, how grateful I am for our little alarm clock, and the sweet, courageous knight he is. :)

Saturday, October 6, 2012


This morning President Monson announced a change to the mission age for young men and young women. The men can now be called at age 18 along with being a HS grad, and the young women age 19.

There have been a number of historic events, throughout my life, in the church. They have all had an impact, and I am certain this one will as well. I immediately felt the Spirit testify to me that this is Heavenly Father's will.

Following General Conference they had a brief news conference. There they shared a little more in detail, about how they would have to expand the Missionary Training Centers, and hire more teachers for the newly called missionaries.

This is an exciting announcement. I think of all those that want to serve right now, yet are waiting for their age to catch up with that desire, and now they don't have to. I think of all those who graduate high school and feel a little lost as they feel in limbo while they wait for the time when they can go on their missions. Then I consider all those who have a desire to have the gospel taught in their countries and need more missionaries. What a blessing this is. How wonderful it will be for those who are patiently waiting for the life-changing missionaries to knock on their door, to share with them what they know to be true.

I am grateful for all the Church revelations that I have experienced in my life. My favorites (that I can think of off the top of my head) are: African-Americans receiving the Priesthood, The Proclamation on the Family, scriptures added to the Doctrine and Covenants, Temples built all around the world, and's announcement that will allow the young men and young women to go on their missions earlier than planned, if they are worthy, ready and able.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Family visits

Amy, Brad and boys are taking off tonight from Oregon to drive here and visit for a week. :) That right there,  is enough for me to be grateful for.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

That's debatable.

Last night I had the opportunity to watch the Presidential Debate between President Obama and Governor Romney. It is no surprise to anyone who my choice is for President of the United States. (oddly enough today whenever I thought of Governor Romney I kept thinking "President Romney"...interesting) One was prepared, one was not. One was presidential, one was not. One knew the facts, one did not. There has been a resounding opinion today of who won this debate. Romney won, hands down.

Does that mean that it is time to consider him elected? Absolutely not! We have quite a bit of time still left in this election, anything can happen. I am only hoping that it is in favor of  Governor Romney.

I am grateful that many prayers were answered last night as Governor Romney spoke eloquently, concisely, kindly, and with conviction on the subject of our economy. I am looking forward to the next debate in 13 days...and will be praying for him just as much for that one.

This 'race' isn't over yet, but soon will be. I'm grateful for that also. :)

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Family pictures

Craig, Angie, Lucas and Darci recently had family pictures taken. I love them. Seriously. I love it when our children get their family pictures taken so I have more updated ones to put around our home. I love it that we have their 'older' ones so that we can see how the kids have grown, and how the grown-ups have changed! When our family was young we only had family pictures taken a few times. I love those as well, and wish we had them taken more often.

I am grateful for our family and for the pictures we have of them. They all make me smile.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Check list

On previous posts I've talked about lists, and how much I do love them. With the kids coming to visit, and my mom moving in, I have a lengthy list of things we need to get done. Last night we were able to move the computer and desk into our bedroom, today I've been cleaning things here and there, along with normal household chores. I'll be nice and won't share what there is left to do; fortunately it is diminishing day by day, task by task. I am so grateful it is!

I do feel badly that I can't be up in Sacramento helping my mom (temporarily) and sister (permanently) move. I just have too much to do here, and I have only so much energy with which to accomplish said tasks.

In a few weeks we will go up and collect my mom, along with her belongings, and bring her safely to our home, where I am certain she will live the remainder of her days, or years, probably. (our Naslund side of the family lives a LONG time!) :)

Monday, October 1, 2012


A few weeks ago I purchased a breadmaker. Since then I've made wheat and white bread. I wasn't crazy about either of them, but it is nice to have fresh bread in our home. Today I opted to make country white bread, I am hoping I like it better than the others! I am enjoying experimenting! I am grateful we now own a breadmaker and I can make bread whenever I want, very easily!