Wednesday, March 30, 2016

spring break/weekend update

We've had such a busy week but really done nothing much at all... just lots of running!  We celebrated Doug's birthday and Easter Sunday with church, YSA kids coming for dinner and Doug's favorite tradition during the Easter Season... running over Peeps with the car.  He's so funny about that.  We had students for dinner and then went to the Devotional after dinner, where the YSA gave Doug their Peeps just to watch him run more over in the church parking lot.  That face is always priceless when he does it and his comment, "This is when Peeps have met the full measure of their creation."  He won't eat them, but he loves to run them over!

We woke up on Monday morning, our first day of spring break to six inches of snow.  CRAZY way to being Spring Break.  ZJ came upstairs, fell to the floor with a very dramatic, "Noooooooo!"  Grace came upstairs and said a simple, "Why?"  Quayd just rolled with it, as he does most everything.

Later in the day, Eric and Grace made the most of the weather by making a snowman, which they named "Frosting".

I was glad to take his photo because he only lasted a few hours and began melting away, although the snow continued off and on through Wednesday afternoon, with lots of intermittent rain.  Eric and Grace have a lot of fun together.   They are very accepting of the "Never be Alone" rule and do a lot of things around the house to keep busy.  He's a good friend.


More snow.  Lots of it.

On Monday evening, for YSA Family Home Evening, we all gathered for "Wally Ball" at the Sports Academy.  Those who are less of the athletic type played Tenzi with my girls and I or chess.  Some rotated and did both.  Fun time!  We enjoyed the time with them and driving home in a literal blizzard!  Another reason I love living in Logan now!  Everything is so close!

One of the YSA kids asked, "Sister Corbridge, how many kids do you have total besides the three at home?"  I said, "Six!  The bigs and the babes!"  He responded, "Wow!  And then you adopt another two hundred kids like us?!"  OH WHAT A PLEASURE IT IS!!

Tuesday morning, in a huge blizzard-like drive, we headed down to our awesome dentist office for Quayd and Zee, followed by lunch with Miki, Wendy and Alyssa at Pizza Pie Cafe.  Quayd attended the funeral of his co-worker, Nyals.  I was proud of him for doing it on his own.  He came home and told me all about the services, which were both the funeral of Nyals and his mother.  A long and emotional experience.  Still shaking my head.

Tuesday evening officially began our break because Doug was home for the rest of the week!  We decided to start a movie marathon where we would watch a movie and the next movie had to have one cast member from the previous movie.  We ordered pizzas, ate relish trays and sandwiches and have had lots of down time together.  Our movie marathon went like this... if I can remember... we started Man in the Iron Mask with Leonardo DeCaprio to Titanic which had Bill Paxton. Next, Bill Paxton is in Apollo 13, so we watched it and went from it to River Wild with Kevin Bacon and Meryl Streep.  From River we watched Mamma Mia with Meryl then I think we got confused because we ended up watching Devil Wears Prada.  (I think we got two Meryl movies in there or I'm forgetting a common denominator/actor.) From Prada we watched Dan in Real Life... Emily Blunt.   We're still working on the marathon.  I think that tonight, we will be watching Les Mis because Anne Hathaway is in it and Devil... OR we may go with another Stanley Tucci movie.   The goal was to end up with Ton Hanks again... ANYWAY.  It's fun to think about who's in a movie and who is in another one.  It's kept us entertained.

In the meantime, we also went to see Saturday's Warrior at the theater on Friday, which is an LDS musical play done in the 70s, and has now been made into a movie.  The kids absolutely loved it!  It's cheesy and corny and the music is splendid.  We'll be buying it the day it's available in DVD.

So, our break has been at home, included a few shifts of work for Doug and Quayd, who's still sick and seems to be getting worse, lots of time in the hot tub (alone and together), lots of food, games, laughs and wonderfully, lots of happiness and I can honestly say, I can't think of one contentious moment.  We've just enjoyed being together!

The best part of the break so far has been watching Quayd come in from his final interview with the Bishop and then with our Stake President as he now is waiting for his mission call.  He's done his part. Now, we just wait for the call to come in the mail, which will be in a few weeks, we hope.  I've been asking the YSA kids how long their calls took to arrive and one boy said that his took four months!!!!  We all know that patience is not one of my virtues!!  Typically though, it's two to four weeks.  And then, it's wait until it's time to go and do lots and lots to prepare!  Quayd is so very happy about this.   It's been fun to watch him, because I truly believe that he's grown, just through the preparation.

A few other ramblings, since I've not blogged all week long... no... I think I'll save it and post more tomorrow or later.  I've not wanted to be away from the family and have not had a lot of time to blog this week.  Well... I've had the time, but I didn't want to take the time.  We've just been enjoying the downtime together!  

More pix and more thoughts later or tomorrow.  Life is good!  So is Spring Break... even when it feels more like Christmas vacation!

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Happy Easter and haPpY bIrtHdAy, Mr. C!

Celebrating the most wonderful day of the year for two reasons... the day of the resurrection of our Savior, Jesus Christ and the birth of my wonderful sweetheart!  Life is good!

Thursday, March 24, 2016

trick or treat in March

First of all, today, I had a literal panic attack!  Doug is still home, sick in bed.  Very sick.  He'll be home six days now in bed, after attempting to work on Monday and realizing that it was not a good decision.  So, this afternoon, we were visiting during lunch when I noticed that ZJ had sent me a text a few hours earlier.  The text had this photo of her with short hair and a message that said, "I donated my hair for the cancer foundation!  Is it cute?"  I FREAKED!!! 

This was about twenty minutes before she would be walking in from school.  I texted her back, "This better be computer generated?"  She responded that it was not and some kid was going to be very happy.  I wrote back, "Some other kid's parents are NOT going to be very happy!  We'd just had a conversation last weekend about how kids should never cut or color their hair, get piercings or tattoos without parental consent because kids are not always wise enough to make some decisions at younger ages.  She had agreed totally.  So, WHAT THE HECK!?!?

I love ZJ's hair.  LOVE it!  LOVE LOVE LOVE it! No matter where we go, people comment about how beautiful her hair is.  I was!  I was literally crying... out of disappointment, out of shock, out of anger that some adult would cut a minor's hair.  I called the school office and asked the secretary how they school could allow teenagers to make a decision like this without parental consent.  The secretary assured me that they would never allow such a thing.  She also assured me that there had not been any assembly or any other thing that would have promoted this.  I was nauseous.  I could not even finish my lunch.   Doug was heartbroken that she would make such a decision without so much as discussing it with us.  We have such an open relationship.  SO disappointed!

A few minutes passed by and ZJ walked in.  Doug could see her at the front door and by his face, I could see relief.  I said, ZJ.  Come in here.  She came in with hair.  She said, "I was just joking. My friends noticed that with my ponytail, it looked like I had cut it.  We were talking and one said, "I wonder what your mom would say if you cut your hair that short."  So, they took the picture and thought that it was a very funny joke.  NOT!!!  We talked with her about it and told her that we had been shocked that she would do something like that without even discussing it with us.  (Not that there's anything wrong with donating your hair, we love that idea, but have you seen her hair!!?!?!?  It's BEAUTIFUL!!!!)  She felt so bad.  She could see that we were both so sad over it. It took a while for us to shake the upset.  We weren't angry, just still in shock!  After a bit, we were laughing about it.  And I teased her all night long about it.  I took this photo to send to Carol because I'd already called Carol crying!  Oh, that lovely head of hair.  (But NOT those not so lovely glasses!  Why do they wear them!?)

ZJ sat down at her laptop and wrote a cute FB message that said something like "Okay guys.  I learned a valuable lesson today.  Don't take jokes too far.  It can hurt people."  It was more than that and it was funny, but she only left it up a few minutes and deleted it. We love ZJ's hair!  I've posted this photo before, but seriously, why would you want to get rid of this?!?

After dinner and my Young Womens Presidency Meeting, I raced back home and hosted the YSA kids for a little ice cream social.  They have a week each month on the calendar when they all try to attend the temple.  Then on Thursday night, they gather at the Bishopric's home for a short message and treats.  It was our turn to host.  Poor Doug was in bed again.  We clorox wiped down everything before they came and he stayed wrapped in his blankets in our bedroom the entire night.  He was sad to miss out on the fun.  The kids just love him and really missed not having him there.  They stayed until about 9:30 and we had a great evening together.  I love these kids!  LOVE them!  They are fabulous and dedicated to all that they are doing in their lives.  We can't get enough of them!  I will hate to see this calling come to an end.

Tomorrow, we have literally nothing on our calendar.  Spring Break begins!  We had talked about going to St. George, but decided that the rest of the world will be going there, so we don't want to fight the traffic or crowds, even if it means not seeing Liza and her family.  We can go anytime and not deal with the rest of the state being there too!  We also talked about going to the ranch but that won't be happening either. We're going to just stay home for now.  And that's perfectly fine with us!  We'll staycation at home!  It works for me!  Life is good!

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

keeping busy!

How did it get to be Wednesday already?!  This week is flying by and so much is going on. 

Tuesday, Quayd and I spent a few hours finalizing the last details of his missionary application.  There were several phone calls involved and a few last "blanks" to fill in.  The last big thing to do was for me to take his photograph for his application.  Yes, I cried.  He wanted to bet me $1000 that I couldn't get through the afternoon without crying but we both knew that he'd win that one!  It was a sweet experience and as he saw his photograph uploaded on the application, it was, literally, the first time that it really hit him, "Mom!  I'm really doing this!"  More tears.  Here's a few pix from the afternoon....
reviewing the final page

 clicking "submit"

and this one is the one!  I am tearing up again just looking at it!

His next step is a final interview with our Bishop, then with our Stake President and then the Stake President hits "Submit" to the Missionary Department of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and the rest is up to them and the Lord!  We should know where Quayd will be serving his two year mission at within less than a month!  Then, it's just wait.  Wait until he graduates and his departure date.  His availability date is shortly after graduation, so we'll have a few months to buy him new suits and shoes and luggage and and and all sorts of things, depending on where he will be serving.

Quayd says that he doesn't care where he serves, as long as he serves!  If I were choosing, I'd love to see him serving in North Carolina or the deep south.  His cheerful disposition would fit right in down in the south!  We'll see!  Time will tell!  He's excited!  Last night, he showed me ten of his facebook friends from school that already have their calls to go within a few months from their graduation.  Exciting times!

In the meantime, Grace is enjoying some down time!  She's worked hard at Bella Voce all year and, now that she's done, she loved being able to go to the mall with Zee after school and just chill!  Today was Eric's birthday.  She bought him this fun shirt and to celebrate his big day, they went to his home and made cookies together, watched a movie and then brought cookies home to us. They've been dating a month now. He's a good boy and is also in the beginning steps of his own mission preparation.  Grace talks about his mission a lot.  She also talks about how good it is to date a boy who has high standards.  We feel blessed to have our kids have good friends!

And then there is the birthday girl, who I'm still trying to pin down for a birthday interview.  She's painted the bottom of her longboard with the help of her dad, between his naps and sickness.  She's so dang cute and fun.  And what a wonderful helper she is!  Tonight, the YSA girls were having their Relief Society Birthday Social making tin foil dinners up the canyon at 7. (It's dark by then!  AND COLD!)  I read a post on Facebook and noticed out our window that it was snowing, so I texted the leader and offered our den and my oven for their party!  She texted back a bit later that this was an answer to her prayers.  We ended up with them all coming over and preparing their food, then baking it while the Stake Relief Society President gave a sweet message and they all visited.  ZJ helped me get ready for their visit, dropping all that she had going on.  She's awesome like that!!!  Always willing to help me with anything I need!  She's my girl!

Zee has taped Halla (Which she knows is spelled Holla, but she prefers the A... that's her, being her!) and now she will paint it black over top of the tape and peel.  This board is something she has wanted for years.  Since Lydia has one, she's so excited to be able to do it together.

I only took two pictures of the gals tonight.  The tinfoil dinners were fab, especially baked in my convection oven! (it only took 35 minutes for them all!)  But, even tastier was the dessert, which I'd never heard of...  We each sliced an unpeeled whole banana lengthwise and then opened the "slit" a bit.  Then, everyone "stuffed" their banana with chocolate covered orange and raspberry sticks, milk chocolate chips and marshmallows.  We wrapped them in tinfoil and popped them in the oven for ten minutes or so until they were melted and gooey.  OH MY!  (Sadness for Doug... he spent the entire night in quarentine and never saw a single person!)

Our Stake Relief Society President came and gave a sweet message.  She commented on how much she loves the girls in our YSA ward because she feels such a love and bond between them all and sees how willing they are to serve each other.  She's so right!  These gals are incredible.  They cleaned every little thing up before they left and were all so gracious for being able to come on the spur of the moment.  It was my pleasure to have them here!  And when I don't have to lift a finger, who could not want them here!  They cooked dinner and cleaned up!  MY pleasure!

Life is good!  Busy, fun, wonderful and gooooooood!

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

just another manic monday

We were awakened on Monday morning to the tragic news of a head-on collision that took the lives of two of the members of our valley.  A sweet "boy" of 34, Nyals and his mother, Jan, were killed near Lava Hot Springs, Idaho, when an 18 year old male driver crossed over into the oncoming lane of traffic.  I have never met Jan, but we all knew Nyals.  He was a bagger at Lee's where Quayd works and everyone knew and loved Nyals.

Nyals was an innocent "boy", I say, because, as he told me himself a few years ago, "I used to be normal, but I was in a motorcycle accident when I was in high school."  He had a serious brain injury that changed his world.  He was always a happy, cheerful, smiling face to greet you and walk your cart out to your car for you.  His family experienced another tragedy last winter when his older sister was killed in a murder/suicide.  This family has faced so much adversity.  His step-father was also in the car and will recover, but I can not, nor do I ever hope to, imagine what it would be like.

Quayd was pretty shaken.  He called me throughout the day in tears.  He worked yesterday afternoon and said that everyone was pretty upset, lots of tears.  Nyals was just someone that everyone loved.  His smile impacted everyone he came in contact with.

I sit shaking my head.  I understand Heavenly Father's Plan of Salvation, but I always wonder why each of us are given the "tailor-made" challenges that we face.  Again, I shake my head and then bow it in thanks for the understanding that there is more.

Grace had her last performance of the spring show last night.  She has been pretty emotional about the end of the season.  Apparently, a few girls quit Bella right in the middle and there has been high school girl drama.  Grace tries really hard to stay out and avoid the drama, but it was hard on her to see her friends so upset.  And then, add to that the end of the season.  Lots of tears.

Since Doug, Zee and I were home alone, we decided that we would run to Burger King, of all places, for dinner because we'd watched American Idol on Sunday and every other commercial was the new Burger King Flame Broiled Hot Dog. It was okay...nothing like the commercials...shocker!  But, we also made a visit to the Stake YSA Dance.  It was loud and fun!  The college kids were having a ball!  ZJ and I were rocking to the music.  That girl has noooooo inhibitions!  I really wanted to dance, but that doesn't happen a lot these days.  My foot no likee dancing anymore, which is sad because I wanted to embarrass Zee with my 70s moves!

We left the dance in time to pick Quayd up from work and then attended the second half of Grace's final performance.  Talk about squeezing it all in!  Quayd was pretty shaken up about Nyal's death.  He'd had a rough night at work, where there were lots of tears and everyone was talking about the accident.  He was in tears several times through Grace's show.   I think that death hits teenagers harder than anyone because they feel so invincible at that age and are certain that they'll live forever strong.  The shock of the accident on top of the death were just more than he wanted to bear.  We talked about Nyals as we drove.  We talked about the Plan of Salvation.  We talked about the fact that Nyals is now no longer struggling with the physical challenges that he's had since his accident when he was in high school.  We talked about him being able to leave the earth with his mother, who has cared for him and that he doesn't ever have to worry about who would take care of him later in life.  There was much discussion.  And tears.

 Doug and I decided that we needed to do something fun to cheer everyone up.  SO!  Doug didn't turn to head up the hill toward our home.  He went straight down main street to Angie's restaurant.  The kids have never been to Angie's.  It's not a place that we eat out at often, other than for breakfast with Carol or Denise.  So, they'd never heard of "Cleaning the Sink".  They'd only seen the bumper stickers but didn't know that they were for.  When the gal brought out the "Sink", their eyes were huge!  HUGE!  And they were thrilled!  We sat there until 10PM watching Quayd polish off the whole thing, minus a few bites from the girls.  They laughed and teased about it.  It was a hoot!

Angie's does it HUGE!  Look at the size of Doug's banana split!  And look at him... he looks like a man with a bug that should be in bed at home.  He's missed two days of work even.  Not cool.

They were so excited!

See the small bowls under the sink.  Grace and Zee ate that much.  Quayd, on the other hand...

He saw a new challenge!

He was so proud to "earn" the bumper sticker!

Talk about "sugar shock"!!!  When we walked out to the car, Quayd said, "I'm colllllllld!" and his teeth chattered the entire way home.  We laughed so hard.  It was just what we needed.  There was much teasing and some serious belching.  Oh my.  The kids were so buzzed!  But, thankfully, they were all so emotionally spent that everyone went straight to bed and were out within minutes of showers.

Sometimes, you just need a good laugh.  That's what we needed.  It was late before we got to bed and everyone has been fighting this bug all week, but it was worth being together and making a fun memory.  Life is good!

Monday, March 21, 2016


I was reminded by Liza that last year, I didn't post ZJ's birthday interview.  ZJ kept busy all weekend this year, hoping that I wouldn't get around to it again, but it will happen!  ZJ keeps hoping that I'll forget.

Our weekend did not turn out like we'd planned, as we all (except Grace) got whatever bug Zeej has had all week long.  She missed school every day last week, trying to go one day but being sent home by a teacher.  I hate when people go out in public while they are sick!  Even Doug never got dressed all weekend, as he coughed and slept and ached all weekend.

On Friday night, Zeej was still feeling a bit under the weather, so stayed home while Doug, Quayd and I attended Grace's spring Bella Performance.  It was fabulous!  They did such a great job!  I texted several photos to Liza after the show and a few clips of the songs they sang.  Liza's response was "Holy Costume Changes!"  There were several!  It was quite the show!  Grace was excited to join the girls afterward for some fun latenight antics at Walmart and Village Inn for dessert.  My favorite part of the evening, however, was watching Quayd and Grace goofing off together at the Meet and Greet, after the show.  It always makes me happy to see them happy together, being friends!

The show was an absolute delight!  The girls really hammed it up.  I notice that Grace has some "moves" often.  She's too fun to watch!

This was Grace's favorite song, "It's raining MEN!"

Needless to say, I was a bit surprised to see her walk out on stage in her upcoming prom dress!  She hadn't mentioned that to me.  It's fine with me... more use is good.  But, Eric has seen the dress now.  Oh well... it's not like it's a wedding dress!

I love this picture!  Could she be any cuter?  (Said in all humility!  wink-wink!)

This was one of the last songs.  Doug and I were both shocked at how much she looks like Kelly sometimes.  This photo definitely captured a Kelly face.  I wish I could remember what Zeej said about this costume.  It was hysterical!  ZJ can always be counted on for a laugh!  This song was not laughable though.  It was magical!

One last change of dress for the curtain call.

Could she be any more feminine?  I don't have that much grace in my pinky finger!  Always demonstrative, always graceful.

I had to share this cute shot of the two of them clowning around.  Truth:  They don't always get along like this.  Sometimes, it's downright ugly.  They are normal teens!  So, I love the moments when they are besties!

It really was a fun show!

Thankfully, I didn't get the bug until late Saturday night.  Zeej was the only one getting better, so, she and I were able to celebrate her birthday in the most unusual way.  Zeej, Grace and I met Carol for breakfast at The Crepery before taking Grace to work.  Zee and I did a little birthday shopping.  We went to Best Buy to pick up a few gifts from her dad.  Doug wanted her to have a Disney CD because he loves hearing the girls singing the Disney songs all the time together.  We also bought Hotel Transylvania 2, another kid movie, but both things that she was so excited to have!  We ordered her other gifts together... a helmet and pads for her new longboard.  I can't believe it but we've finally allowed her to have a board since her bestie, Lydia, has one too.  Make-up and skateboards... teenage girls today... go figure!

the crepery... she hates it when I pull out the camera... but she does a hundred selfies a day and that's okay.  LOL

at Best Buy... oh my word, she get's more beautiful every day!

one of the many selfies that Zee took while we played...not my favorite picture, but she posted on her Facebook page with it: I love my mom so much!  This morning was a blast! @ our goofy side  Ya gottaluvthat!

sushi with bestie Lydia ... in this one, I can see in her eyes that she'd been sick all week but she wasn't going to miss her birthday

Black Pearl owners always treat my kiddos with a special treat on their birthday.  Selena surprised Zee with this mango something or another.  It's Mango, so I couldn't eat it, but Lydia and Zee thought it was pretty tasty!

We worked on our Young Women's project in the afternoon before we picked Lydia up and took Grace to her performance at the High School in the evening.  We left Quayd and Doug in their beds at home, dropped Grace off at school and went to Black Pearl for ZJ's requested sushi.  She was in heaven.  After sushi and a stop at Lee's for treats to bring home (no birthday cake, by choice), the girls watched their movie marathon of Hotel Transylvanias and laughed themselves silly.  ZJ said it was her best birthday ever.  I thought it was so strange... no cake, no treasure hunt, no songs, nothing but whatever she wanted to do.  But, if she was happy, then, so was I.  ZJ hates birthdays.  She always has.  She doesn't like the attention and fuss at all.

Sunday morning, we all woke up feeling like the gamboo had hit us hard.  So, no one got dressed.  No one got out of bed for hours on end.  We ended up catching up on this season of American Idol and I spent a lot of time online reading about Young Womens activities and ideas.  I did make some porkchops and Zeej made some baked potatoes for us.  Not a normal Sabbath Day at all for us.  We totally missed out on the opportunity of attending the new Provo Temple Dedication.  Sadness. But, we were together, resting and trying to recuperate from this bug.

It was a different weekend... a different birthday... a different Sabbath.  But, it was a good one and that's all that matters.  This family of mine... they rock my world... even when they are sick!  Life is good!

Thursday, March 17, 2016

seventeen is working for her

 Eric called while I was out and about to ask me if he and a couple of friends could come over to "decorate" Grace's room with an invitation to Senior Prom.  He got here shortly after I did with a carload of balloons, wrapped and zip-tied in blankets and sheets.
They poured the bags full of balloons and then hung streamers everywhere.  We visited while they got the job done!
directions on the poster board.
 Grace didn't get home from rehearsal until after 9.  ZJ and I waited in her room when we heard her walk in upstairs.  She noticed that her light was on first and said that she wondered if she'd left it on?  But, she had no clue.  Her face!

 Zeej videotaped it while I took pictures.
 Her response was, "WHAT!?  It's beautiful!  Oh my gosh!  Oh my gosh! This is beautiful!  I love it!  OKAY!  So which one shall I start with!?"
 She popped
  and popped
 and popped!
 Quayd had already gone to bed and she worried that she would wake him up.
 But, it didn't stop her!
Every balloon had a piece of paper inside it.  All, but one, were blank.
 And then she found "the one".
 The papers would go flying when the balloons popped and she'd have to check and double check.
 And then, she found one that said, "This is the one."
 Is that a happy face or what?!  She's so excited!  Grace's enthusiasm for life is almost "magical".  She's always been so demonstrative and she's so feminine and graceful.  It was just darling to watch her enjoy this experience.

 What a wonderful time Grace is having being seventeen!  She has friends and loves her family. She is so involved in school and loves the learning and the social aspect of it.  We love to hear her beautiful voice as she does dishes.  She always sings while she washes dishes...when she's around to do them!  She's just a joy most of the time! (Keeping it real...she is seventeen!)  It's a delight to watch her grow into this lovely young lady that she is!

Life is good!