January 1996

(Highlights – miracle of getting a house)

December has brought many wonderful blessing to our family.  I would like to share something that is very special to me.  Last year about this time, Lewis and I felt prompted to invite another child into our family.  We had no health insurance and Lewis had no real job to speak of (although he worked very hard at the many part time jobs he’d accumulated).  So Sarah was conceived, but as the first few months passed I was frightened at the financial realities we were facing and didn’t want to go in to see a doctor/midwife because I knew I couldn’t pay for this baby.  I considered delivering at home because there was just no money, but with my history, Lewis felt that wasn’t wise and insisted that we would find a way.

About this time, I was reassured by the Holy Ghost that all would be well; in fact we would be able to get a home at the beginning of the next year.  The impression was so strong that I began going through closets and cleaning up for the move.  Since that time Lewis was hired with SkyWest and his book proposal was accepted by McGraw-Hill.

Our sweet little Sarah was born and what a blessing she is in our lives.  She is such a pleasant baby, always smiling and happy.  However, as the end of the year approached, I was confused as to how we could be getting a house for we couldn’t find anything we could afford and we have no savings.

My uncle lived next door to my parents and he was selling his home and moving to Idaho, but he had a buyer before the home was even on the market.  At the end of November we learned that there was trouble with the sale, since the buyer was having a difficult time selling his home.  My mom asked my uncle if we could be next in line should the original buyer fall through and he agreed.  December 20th was the deadline for the original sale and the buyers couldn’t meet it.

The ball is now in our court.  We have felt the Lord’s hand in preparing this for us, even to preparing a way for us to come up with the money necessary for closing costs with investments made a year ago when we knew nothing about this.  This will be such a blessing for our family.  With Lewis being gone half the time, I really need my parents nearby.  Lewis wanted a little house on a big lot with a shop and I wanted to be close to my family and our Heavenly Father has granted us according to our desires.  Wow!  We are so grateful for our many blessings and know that we are nothing of ourselves.

February 1996

(Highlights – moved into the new house, adjusting to the new house)

Our new house – the children are not impressed

We are very grateful to be moved into our new home.  We closed on February 5th and that evening had a housewarming party with Linda and Lewis’ families attending.

We have been experiencing a little bit of “culture shock” as it was nearly three years of living in my parents’ basement.  Lewis left on Feb 6th for a 4 day trip for work and this time Mom and Dad weren’t upstairs.  I was really alone.  Each night I checked the locks about 4 times and it took a while to get to sleep, but I will get used to it.

Joey and Melanie used to have a morning routine of waking up and going upstairs to see Grandma and Grandpa who spoil them with little things like letting them watch movies and dumping out the bottle of boring water I’d filled for Melanie and filling it with yummy juice and they miss those things.  We don’t have a TV or VCR yet and to the children that is the final straw.  Yesterday we went to the library and Joey immediately headed to the children’s video area and picked out a cartoon, when I reminded him that we couldn’t watch it at home he was crestfallen.  As we drove home and passed Grandma’s house and pulled into our driveway Joey moaned, “Oh no, not THIS house.”

March 1996

(Highlights – Valentine’s dance, got a TV/VCR, learning from Becky, best haircut ever)

This month we enjoyed one of my favorite dates of the year… the Stake Valentine’s dance.  I love dancing with my sweetheart and he is a terrific dancer by the way.  Another day, Lewis took me flying in the Pitts and we did lots of whoop-dees.  It was so fun it’s hard to believe that he actually gets paid to do that.

Lewis finally broke down to our pleas and gave the go-ahead on buying a TV and VCR.  It has been nearly 4 years since we have had our own (we did watch movies on Mom and Dad’s occasionally and the kids watched more than they should have probably).  The children are thrilled.  We have set rules of only one movie or TV show a day and none on Sunday.  Joey says grandma’s rules are nicer, but then grandmas are always nicer.

My sister Becky who lives in Virginia came for a visit.  Becky is wonderful.  I watched her listen to Joey as though he were the most important person in the world and whatever he was saying was important.  She does that for me too, and everyone else.  I wish I were more like her.

My sweet Sarah is learning how to sit alone and thinks tasting new things (food, toys, people, whatever) is great fun.  I love my children.

We learned that you could get haircuts from the cosmetology students at the local community college for $2.  I learned about this from Cathy, a student and friend of my brother.  I scheduled an appointment to have Cathy cut my hair, but I didn’t know that they have two departments: cosmetology and barbering and Cathy was working the barber side at the time.  She was only allowed to cut men’s hair and thought I had scheduled an appointment for one of the guys in the family.  Since she wasn’t allowed to help me, she recommended another student who was working on the cosmetology side.  Best haircut I’ve ever had in my life.  It’s the only time people ever came up to me and said, “Wow you look great, not like the mother of three young children.”  The cute girl who cut my hair graduated right after she did it.  Mom like my haircut so much that she went to the Community College to get her hair cut, but the girl was already gone.  I can’t remember her name and could never find her again.  Darn.

April 1996

(Highlights – Lewis dentist, Melanie needs dentist, Linda 26th birthday, Melanie carrot cookie incident)

Life is a great adventure.  This month Lewis won our family contest for “most expensive” with a trip to the dentist and 4 crowns and a root canal.  (He got the good eyes, I got the good teeth) We can’t afford to get everything done right away so he’s only partially finished now.  Melanie was 1st runner up at the dentist with about $500 of needed work which they can’t even do until she’s three so we’ll be saving up for the poor little girl’s birthday present.  Happy birthday to you.

Melanie also won first prize for “accident prone” including burning her arm on a pan, Joey scratching her face, Tambra taking a big bite out of her chest (paybacks are a bummer – Melanie bit Tambra in November), and Lewis accidentally pulling her elbow out of socket while swinging her around (he felt so terrible).

Not all of March’s adventures were bad though.  Lewis bought a used lap-top computer from my brother Paul and now has plenty to do on long away-from-home trips.  He loves it.  He also received a copy of the page proofs for his book from McGraw-Hill and it was so exciting to see the pictures with the text and do a quick editing job.  It reminded me how much work has gone into this project and we are thrilled that it will soon be published.

I celebrated my 26th birthday for a whole week!  Lewis took me on a lunch date.  Sunday we had cake with the family (Lewis made it; his first attempt at such a project, and it was terrific!)  And finally the ladies went to lunch.  What a wonderful tradition.

Joey is four years old; my brother Robert started kindergarten when he was four.  I thought about how I would feel if it were time to send Joey to school already.  Would he be ready?  He is very smart.  He can read one book (it has ten words in it) and several other words.  He can also write his name.  I’ve been giving him little gummy airplanes for reading and he “flies” them across the country on our map on the kitchen table.  He knows where Utah, California, and Virginia are (he can show you where John Smith and Pocahontas were) and he takes “trips” to see his cousins Wendy, Ben and Angela in California (he loves them and misses them so much).

Melanie is not a whit behind him.  She easily counts to 10 and beyond, sings the alphabet song, and tries to sound out words like Joey does, but for now she gets the wrong sound for the words, like this b-b-b-tree or whatever.  She’s my little “mess maker” and she is very good at it.  I made some carrot cookies which take forever to make.  They are very good, but without question the best part is the orange frosting.  After finally finishing making and frosting the cookies, I was ready for a quick shower.  Meanwhile Melanie climbed up on a chair and dug the frosting out of all the cookies and dropped, crumbled or stepped on most of the remnants.  I came upstairs clean and excited to eat a cookie, only to find nothing but pitted remnants and crumbs everywhere.  She will make sure I never get lazy.  I have plenty to do.

Little Sarah sits up well now, (she is 6 months old), but she doesn’t not yet roll over.  I have a theory about why that is, for you see, you need to lie down in order to roll over and my little sweetheart thinks she needs to be held every waking moment.  But oh how we love her.  Her sweet smiles brighten my day and she is so good natured.  I love my family and thoroughly enjoy my chosen profession as a full time mother.




December 1996

(Highlights – Sarah walks at 14½ months, Thanksgiving, Christmas tree falling over, first piano recital, repair broken oven)

Our little Sarah has finally decided at 14½ months that walking is a good idea and I love it!  She is so cute and oh so much happier now that she is that much more independent.

It was wonderful having my brother Marlow and his wife Lorra here for Thanksgiving.  As an extended family, we went on a few “field trips” to Thanksgiving Point and “The Tree house Museum” and afterward to Burger King.  We had so much fun together and made some great new memories.

Lewis and I borrowed Mom’s extra artificial Christmas tree and after it was all decorated, it decided to bend and fall over (several times) until I gave up and laid it on the floor until Lewis came home and saved me a day or two later.  He patiently un-decorated everything, fixed the tree, and put the lights back on.

We are grateful that Lewis had Thanksgiving off work this year and will also have Christmas off this year!  Last year he was out of town for every holiday so we are particularly delighted to have him around.

Yesterday I had the privilege to joining with Mom’s piano recital with my 3 little students and they did great!  I was so proud of them.

I need to thank the engineers in my family for coming to my rescue and repairing my oven.  It completely gave up the ghost the day after Thanksgiving (I guess those 10 pies did it in). We have been doing without for a little while, when out of the blue to my surprise and delight my brother Paul says, “Do you mind if I take a look at it?”  Well anyone who has ever had Paul “take a look” at anything knows that he can work miracles and once again he did, this time with a little help from Robert and Dad.  It was so fun to listen to Paul and Robert discuss technically what the problem might be and figure out how the oven works.  They make quite a team.  Years ago I wouldn’t have guessed that.  I am overcome with gratitude for my incredible family, they they would willingly take the time to share their talents to help me out.  Thanks.  I love you all.

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