I am sitting on my couch watching the Oprah/Sarah Pallin interview. No, I don't watch Oprah often and actually missed the 4 o clock showing, so am watching the later version. But I really liked Sarah's comment to Oprah when she was asked if she planned to run for President in 2012. She said,"I have learned you don't need a title to make a difference" What a great come back. That is so true. We can make a difference every day. I remember having a really bad day during my ER rotation when I was in school. I had taken a break and was talking to my friend who was in New Orleans doing his rotations. I will never forget what he said that day, "You can't change everyone, but you can effect every person." I really try to live by that, especially at work. Some day's are better than other's. We can all make a difference and an impact on other's lives and usually do in either a good or bad way. Hopefully always good.
This is a great one, "When will you have more time than you do right now?" I always thought that when I graduated from grad school that I would have so much time on my hands, yea right. I think that life just got busier with different things, like work, callings, gym time, me time...but actually, when I look back ten years from now, I believe I will say I had so much more time ten years ago. Today is a great example. I worked the 7-5 shift. Usually I go the gym after this shift, but after working out too hard the past two days, I decided to give myself a day to rest my muscles. So tonight I have nothing planned, well actually some ladies in my ward are doing a cooking night, but because of the rain, wind, and chill in the air, I decided that I just wanted to go home. It doesn't happen too often that I actually have a few unplanned hours just to myself. I am sure you are saying what do you mean, you are single and have plenty of time for yourself, but actually the past few weeks every waking minute I was doing things for other people. A few weeks ago the quote of the day from President Hinckley's book said, "Time is really all we have. And every individual has an equal portion of it. The trick is to get more out of what is available to us." I have been thinking about this often, especially when I hear people say they are just to busy for this or for that. We all have the same amount of time, it just depends on how we use that time. We can never get time wasted back, so use it wisely. So tonight maybe I will start a new book or watch the CMA's or finish the blanket I have been meaning to finish for my friends baby, because ten years from now I hope that I have a different kind of busy, with less time for myself.
My grandma Betty sent me a book soon after I moved to Charlotte called, Ever Wonder ask questions and live into the answer. In the book she enclosed a letter which reads, "I enclose a book for you. I purchased one for myself and then decided that I would have enjoyed having a copy when I was young. I am writing my thoughts on each page as I think about what the printed sentance means to me. I would have liked to read each page at 20 something, 40 something, 60 something, and have written at each re-reading what the phrase meant to me at each age. If you just read through it once-and do not write your responses-it seems to me it brings insights and new thoughts with each page." This book sits on my bookshelf staring at me each time I sit down at my computer and so I have decided to take the questions and answer them from time to time on my blog. So the first question say's, "When was the last time you did something for the first time? It was actually a few weeks ago. You see, 14 months ago Grandma Betty asked me what my goal was for the next few months. My answer was get a passport and start the cycleing class at the gym. Well, I actually just started the Cycleing class and absolutely love it. Yes, my hind end is a little sore, but is actually getting use to the seat. I have never really been a biker, because my short little legs never quite reach the pedals; for reals. In fact the first class the teacher commented that the bike seat only went so low. And actually this is the first time that I have answered questions from this book, which she actually sent to me on 10/7/2005. So tell me, when was the last time you did something for the first time?
I feel like I need to write. I don't know why, but I do. I love to write. Someday I will write a book when life slows down. Although they say it never slows down. I always thought when I finished school life would slow down, but it only sped up. Today was kind of a lazy day. I stayed in my PJ's until almost 4pm, which is something I truly hate to do. I hae so many things to do on my to do list, which I mostly got done. They were little things, register for boards, renew state and national license, scrub mold from toilets, laundry, straighten house, get a plane ticket for Christmas which I got for $408, sounds like a lot, but the cheapest I have seen for a few months for that time of year, pay bills, and study scriptures. I still have a few hours to finish up a few more things, but they can wait for tomorrow, so I can spend 30 minutes studying for boards and the last 30 minutes of my day getting lost in my latest novel, "The Falcon Heart" by Jaroldeen Edwards one of my favorite authors. Tonight I did reach a goal that I actually set for myself in August 2008 when my grandma Betty asked what my goals were for the next 6 months. One of those goals was to start a cycle class at the gym. I have always heard it was a great class and did try it once or twice a few years ago, but today I did it. The exciting thing was one of my favorite instructors that I haven't seen in at least a few years was subbing. She is 42 and looks like she is 25. She makes me want to work harder so I can have a half way looking body like she has. I felt so good after the class and actually was sad when it was over. I had been expecting at least 10 more minutes when it was done. After my cycle class I rushed out to my sewing class, where we learned how to put in zippers. I feel like a kid in that class, because it is something completely new to me. I love it and am really enjoying the sister's that I am getting to know better. I love how our teach Robin Wegerer loves teaching this class and am so grateful for her time and patience in teaching us. Life is good, even though sometimes I wonder if I am ever making a difference in my life or other's.
So last week I got to go home for a week. Of course I worked six days straight before hand. I worked 4-2 then caught a plane at 5. I don't sleep well on planes, so by the time I got home I was exhausted. But oh no sleep for the tired. First things first. Mom picked me up from the airport Curb Side. She never comes in anymore. You know how everyone has someone waiting for them, no not me. I just continue on toward baggage claim, although I do always hope there might be someone waiting for me. So when I finally got my luggage, which really didn't take long considering Charlotte takes at least an hour to get your luggage out, we headed to the Olive Garden where we met Tristen, dad and my new niece Aidree. Oh, it was such a fun thing, even though I was tired. We had to have the never ending pasta bowel, which ended that week. I love it even though I can usually only eat one bowel. After lunch we sat and talked for a while, which was fun. I am sure our waiter wanted to get us out of there, but instead we enjoyed conversation over a piece of delicious Pumpkin Cheesecake. I love this time of year all because of autumn leaves and pumpkin. I love pumpkins, pumpkin cheesecake, ice cream, cookies, you name it or make it and I will eat it! Later in the day we went to Tyler and Danielle's to visit them and Kadyn. And on our way home, Troy called to say him, Beckie and Gavin were at my parents. Let's just say when I hit the bed that night, I didn't hear anyone snoring. It was the best night's sleep in at least 3 days. Tuesday morning mom and I went to Costco, where Beckie and Danielle met us. We also ran into a few friends, which is always fun. That day was Tristen and Mitch's third Anniversary, so they brought Aidree over and they went to dinner. Oh, she is so darling. But when she is hungry, you better feed her. Wednesday the girls came over for lunch and I made my friend Karen Mattingly's fabulous Chicken Sandwiches. Oh, they were to die for. In fact we had them again on Thursday for lunch too. Tristen's husband went to the temple with the youth, so she spent most of the day and evening at mom's.
Thursday we decorated Halloween cookies with the boys. Let's just say that only lasted for about 5 minutes, but it was fun and brought back the day's of my childhood when my mom made sugar cookies for every holiday. Thursday night I met my cousin Alisha and her husband and Tristen and Mitch at a fake Cafe' Rio, I can't remember the name, but it does kind of resemble Cafe Rio. The kicker was when I found a hair in my salad. Alisha, Jason, and I then went to the temple, where their ward had ward temple night. I don't think that our ward has ward temple night. I have never heard them announce it anyway. Probably because it is too far for the whole ward to drive all in one night. Anyway, we did sealings because we would have had to wait over an hour for endowment. There were that many people and they start every half hour. Talk about fill the temple. It was great. So I drove home from Boise and then drove back, because Tristen was afraid that I wouldn't make it over in time to babysit Friday morning. After babysitting, the kids came in from SLC and mom and dad came to Tristen's and we had Pizza. I don't eat Pizza very often, because I can't eat a whole pizza by myself.
Saturday Tony, Tanner, Tenielle, and I went to lunch with Grandma Betty. She loved it. She had us each tell a good thing and a not so good thing going on in our lives at the moment. It was fun to hear the different things that my siblings were dealing with in life. Later that evening we met Tyler and Danielle at Johnny Carino's for dinner. After dinner Tanner, Tenielle, and I went over to Grandma and Grandpa Young's. We chatted with them for over an hour. Grandma seem very well and they both made us laugh. I get my love for candy from my Grandma Young, because she has it all over her house and she had just restocked because it was all fresh.
Sunday we went to my cousin Ben's Homecoming. He went to the Washington D.C. South Mission. He did an amazing job on his talk. After we went to my Aunt Thalia's and had my only home cooked meal of the week. My mom has gotten lazy in her old age. We then drove back to SLC. We stopped off and saw my friend Steve in Ogden. It is always good to see him. He makes me smile. Tony then took me to the airport, where I was suppose to take the Red Eye, but because they were overbooked I got a $400 voucher and they put me up in a hotel room. I should have just gone back to Tenielle's, as I didn't sleep too well, but It saved them from getting up to early to take me back to the airport, not that it matter's, because she only lives 10 minutes from the airport. So that was my trip. It was quick and mom said that next time I go home that we need to just stay home and not go anywhere. We really didn't got anywhere, the time just flies by so fast. We had a great time though and I am looking forward to Thanksgiving, when we will all be in SLC.
I really wish I had the time to write my thoughts each day. But life is so busy and doesn't allow for such enjoyment, but today I am making the time. Today as I type, I hold in my arms my most precious niece Aidree Lin. She has my chin. I truly believe Grandma Gladys Swensen sent each of her great grand babies down with her pointy chin. I have had Aidree mostly all to myself today, well that is except for a few minutes while my mother stopped by to bring me lunch and probably to check in on me. Hello, I may not be a mother at age 32, but I do know how to do this kind of thing. Tristen had a continuing education course from 8-5 today. So that is why I have been with Aidree all day. Aidree screamed at the top of her lungs this morning around 9:30. I got her dressed along with a pink bow in her hair. I was sure she was hungry so I tried to feed her a bottle. It just wasn't the real thing and took her several minutes to decide she was hungry enough to eat. She fell asleep for a few minutes, enough for me to put my make up on, before she was awake again. She fell asleep in my arms, I laid her down, did my hair and she was awake again, this time with her second dirty diaper for the day. It was the third dirty diaper that helped her fall asleep for at least 30 minutes. When she woke up again, I decided I would try to feed her again, that was about 2:00. She fell asleep about 2:30. I laid her down, thinking I would be able to finish my enrichment newsletter. Nope, she was awake by three.
So I have decided, that instead of doing anything that really isn't important today, that I will just sit here and hold my sweet little niece, because today it doesn't matter if I get the newsletter finished, or if I study for boards, or read a book. I am going to enjoy the next few hours listening to Aidree moan in her sleep and the fact that I can enjoy this moment, because it will never return. I remember a quote I heard when I lived in Kentucky, which said, "Enjoy the season you are in, because you will never be able to go back to that season." So today, I am enjoying this sweet child so fresh from heaven and the spirit that she has brought with her to this earth. I am sure she had great potential. It will be fun to see what kind of person she will become. As I have sat here today, I have pondered on how I can love someone so much, when I just met them. The love that comes each time a new grand baby enters our family is indescribable. All of a sudden your heart feels this new love and makes me understand maybe a little of how our Heavenly Father loves each of us. Last night I did sealings with Jason, Alisha and their ward. It was a wonderful experience as I was able to ponder the blessings of eternal families and imagine the joy of the families that we were being proxy for to be sealed together. How truly blessed we are to have the gospel in our lives that allow us to know that we can be together with our families for eternity. She is awake now. I think that she must just want to stare up to her Auntie Terah, so that she can remember me, for when I leave for a few months again.
Eight days ago on September 12, I became a proud aunt to my first niece. I am so excited to meet Miss Aidree Lin. She was born a big 8 pounds, 15 ounces and 22 inches tall. At her week visit, she was already 9 pounds, 2 ounces. From pictures, she doesn't look like a new born. She doesn't have that newborn, well, scrunched up ugliness. She is so pretty. I get to go home in 2 weeks and can't wait. Here are a few pictures, that it took me a whole week to get, but have so enjoyed.
A BSU fan from the very beginning. I thought it was so cute of the nurse to put a blue and orange bow in her hair for Aidree's fist BSU football game, which of course they won!
I love this picture of Aidree with my dad. How precious.
And of course, Grandma Gladys Swensen wouldn't dare send a great grandbaby of hers to earth without sending them with her chin.
I found these fabulous RULES TO LIVE BY and thought I would share. Rules to Live By 1. Take into account that great love and great achievements involve great risk. 2. When you lose, don't lose the lesson. 3. Follow the three R's of good karma: - Respect for self - Respect for others - Responsibility for all your actions. 4. Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes a wonderful stroke of luck. 5. Learn the rules so you know how to break them properly. 6. Don't let a little dispute injure a great relationship. 7. When you realize you've made a mistake, take immediate steps to correct it. 8. Spend some time alone every day. 9. Open your arms to change, but don't let go of your values. 10. Remember that silence is sometimes the best answer. 11. Live a good, honourable life. Then when you get older and think back, you'll be able to enjoy it a second time. 12. A loving atmosphere in your home is the foundation for your life. 13. In disagreements with loved ones, deal only with the current situation. Don't bring up the past. 14. Share your knowledge. It is a way to achieve immortality. 15. Be gentle with the earth. 16. Once a year, go someplace you've never been before. 17. Remember that the best relationship is one in which your love for each other exceeds your need for each other. 18. Judge your success by what you had to give up in order to get it.(Dalai Lama) 19. Be kind.
A sister that I VT has been sick this week, so I told her I would bring her dinner. I made bread this morning and then ran some errands. My errands were longer than I planned, so I changed the soup that I was going to make and ended up making my own concoction of Chicken Corn Chowder. It was so delicious that I had to share the recipe or at least write it down so that I don't forget it. I had it made and was out the door in 20 minutes, no joke.
Here it is my "Semi Homemade" Chicken Corn Chowder
1 can creamed corn
1 can whole potatoes
1 can chicken broth
1 can costco/sams chicken
1 can evaporated milk
1 can Chicken Corn Chowder (from Aldi's)
Celery 1/2 cup or so chopped
Carrots 1/2 cup or so chopped (or I shredded just a few, because I didn't have time to let them boil and soften)for color!
Frozen Corn I just dumped some in maybe 1/2 cup
2T sour cream
Salt and Pepper to taste
Bacon and Cheddar potato skins
Combine and bring to boil: chicken broth, celery and carrots until softened. Add frozen corn until soft.
In another pan combine creamed corn, whole potatoes (cut in pieces), chicken, not quite the entire can of milk (although I think you would be fine, I thought I had added the whole can and didn't), and Prepared Chicken Corn Chowder (if you have it). Warm, don't scorch the bottom.
Combine both pans and sour cream.
Serve with Bacon and Cheddar potato skins.
This was so delicious that I wished I could have eaten it with someone else. Maybe I will have to make this for my next RS Pres meeting. The best part about this was it only took less than 20 minutes!
I know, I hear you all, it's about time I updated my blog. I still have a valentine background, not because I am waiting to fall in love with some hot hunk, well, really I am, but because my background just won't change. I do everything I am suppose to, but I think there must be something blocked, which won't allow me to do it on my lap top. I really have been wanting to update over the summer, but I ask you all, where did the summer go and has it really ended. I mean Labor Day is only 2 days away and after that, well, most people in the West put away their flip flops and shorts and pull out the sweater's and jackets. Don't get me wrong, I love fall days, but I am just not ready to put away my flip flops. Maybe that is why I continue to live in the south, where I only stop wearing them all day from December through February, of course I always keep them at the door, for short excursions. I do love Fall or rather the cool evenings, which surprisingly we have had this week, deserts containing pumpkin and cinnamon, fall leaves and of course college football! There is something about Boise State Football (great game this week!), fall leaves (my tree's think fall is already here as the leaves are already turning colors or maybe the tree has just died), and yes, I do love sweaters, although I did buy a pair of shorts and flip flops this week. This year though I feel like my summer needs to last another month, which is why I am planning to go to the beach in 10 days. Maybe then I will feel ready to move out of summer and into fall. This morning has been very relaxing. This is the first weekend that I didn't have anything planned. That just doesn't happen very often. I had origiannly planned to organize the garage, but feel I would be a little more successful doing a little shopping, not for clothes...I have plenty of those, but for decorations for my newly painted room. You see, when my parents were here last week. I of course had to put my father's talents to work as I always do when he comes to town. We or rather he put beadboard up in my room and mom and Tenielle(someone has to supervise...that was me) painted one wall blue, I am talking Boise State Blue. I was a little hesitant thinking that it would make the room look too dark, but it is breath taking. Okay, maybe that isn't quite the word, but it looks pretty awesome. The room kind of has a French Country look. So I figured I would put today to use and will try to find some decorations for the walls. My mom has suggested plates. Apparently they are the in thing...different shapes, colors, sizes. Mom also feels I need a chair in one of the corners. The wall between the windows needs a large mirror, which my be pricey and hard to find, but will be quite the asset to the room. So I will head to my nearest TJ Max, although I had planned to wait until my beach trip, as there is a huge TJ Max/Homegoods at Hilton Head. Maybe I will hit a few yard sales or even maybe the goodwill. You never know what you might find. So there you have something to read today. I know I say I am going to keep up on this, so here is to a new beginning...hopefully!
Yes, I am back to continue with my travels to the midwest, eventually I will finish, hopefully before my next travels begin. I know I need to finish this, but there is so little extra time in my life. So Tuesday May 5, we left Chicago and headed to Holland, Michigan. This is what I had looked forward to for sometime. I love tulips. There is just something about them that screams spring and the end of cold weather. I can't show enough pictures to even begin to express the beauty of what we saw. We first drove into the little town of Holland, where we stopped off at some large gym like place which had some booths, lunch, and information. We then headed to Windmill, Island. It was pretty impressive with it's make up of a dutch village and the only true windmill from Holland. Of course being Cinco De Mayo, we had to have Mexican food for dinner and so we did, along with our virgin pina coladas. The people at the hotel we stayed in were so nice and we loved the hotel. The breakfast was pretty great, considering that we didn't even get a free one at the Marriott in Chicago.
Wednesday May 6, was my favorite day of all. We started the morning by going to a tulip farm. Can I just say, after these pictures, I think that I should just become a photographer. No more needs to be said in writing, so I will let the pictures do the talking. We then went into town to secure our spot for the annual parade. Let me tell you, I have never been to a parade like this in the middle of the day where I saw so many people and so many bands. PS. I will add pictures from this amazing parade later, since it is way past my bed time. It was a very long, but very enjoyable parade. The town was darling. We then had dinner under a tent, put on my the local lions club. Very delicious. As we got to our hotel the rain began pouring and poured all night, which allowed for some great shots Thursday morning. So stay tuned.
Tanner's Sophmore Year at Tristen's Wedding. Mom made him part his hair, so because he didn't want to do this he decided he was going to wear this jacket as a joke, which he had bought at the Desert Industries and wore when he dressed up for Homecoming week, thinking that it was not so nice and the glasses with no glass. He looked right handsome. I have to interrupt my vacation blogging to congratulate my little brother Tanner on his graduation from high school. I so wish that I could be there today, even though we know that graduations are pretty boring, unless you are the one graduating and even then they can be boring. Although, since Tanner is the Senior Class President, he gets to stand up and speak to his fellow classmates. I talked to him a few weeks ago and asked him what he was going to say. He didn't know. I suggested that he write a song and play his guitar. That would be something that would be a little more entertaining and memorable. I highly doubt he did this, but I think it was a good idea. I hope that he emails me a copy of his speech or that someone doesn't forget to charge the video recorder (as this happens often at our house and always on important occasions) so they can record it and I can watch it later, unless someone accidentally records over it, which also happens. So in my conversation with Tanner he was telling me how he was just ready to be done with school and move on. He has had quite a time the last few months, including having to make up 12 days of seminary. I mean, who misses that many days of seminary in one quarter, especially when it is in the middle of the day, unless you just skip class, what could be more important than learning the gospel. So we were talking about how life is like a book and I was saying that he was coming to the end of a chapter and about to start another one. He said, "I don't look at it as the end of a chapter because I am not always excited about the next chapter. I look at it as the next book in a series, which I do get excited about." I have to agree. Life is like a series. You are always a bit sad to come to the end of a book, but so excited when the next book comes out. I feel like right now I am in the middle book of the series, which can kind of feel like it is dragging out and a little boring. Hopefully the end of this book is coming and something exciting, like a new book is about to start. So Tanner this is for you. I hope that the next book is even better than the last book and that life throws you some great curve balls. You have some exciting choices to make in the near future, I wish you the best in all that you do. One of my favorite quotes says, "It is truly said: It does not take much strength to do things, but it requires great strength to decide what to do." Chow Ching. I think Dr. Seuss said it best,"Congratulations! Today is your day. You're off to Great Places! You're off and away! You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You're on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the guy who'll decide where to go. You'll look up and down streets. Look 'em over with care. About some you will say, 'I don't choose to go there.' With your head full of brains and your shoes full of feet, you're too smart to go down any not-so-good street...So be your name Buxbaum or Bixby or Bray or Mordecai Ali Van Allen O'Shea, or Tanner Louis Young, you're off to Great Places! Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting. So...get on your way! I Love You
Okay, so I am little slow at blogging our girls trip, but eventully I will get it done. Sunday May 3, 2009 So day three we woke early so that we could catch the train earlier than the day before, which put us in the city a little after 9am. It is amazing how such a busy city can be so quiet on weekends. It is actually quite spooky at how quiet it was when we first got down town. We first headed to Millenium park where we enjoyed the fountain and all of the pretty flowers. It was very relaxing and a beautiful morning. We then got back on the tour bus and stopped off at the Shedd Aquarium and the Field Museum. The Field Museum was not my favorite. I don't really like live animals, let alone dead, stuffed ones. The Aquarium was okay, but I was hoping to see the dolphins. They were apparently in hibernation or rather the exibit was temorarily closed due to construction. I was a bit disappointed that we didn't make it to the planitarium, but I guess we will have to do that on another trip. We then went back to Michigan Avenue to see what we had missed the day before. That of course was the dessert's from both Gheradeli and Hershey. Hello, talk about expensive, but oh, how delicious. We also had to try the famous Gino's East Pizza, we had a very rude, horrible waitress and the pizza wasn't nearly as delicious as Giodona's. So after all of the calories we ingested, we walked several blocks, or miles from Migican Avenue to the Metra. It was rather pleasant to see the city a the end of a Sunday, but by the time we got back to the hotel, we were walked out. Monday May 4, 2009 Monday morning, we experienced the real city of Chicago as we boarded the train with the rest of the business people. The hords of people were amazing. Something you didn't see on the weekend. This was one of my favorite days. We finally got to visit Potbelly's again for breakfast because they were closed during the weekend. We then took a 2 hour tour of the north side of the city, including Lincoln Park. It was rather relaxing in our big tour bus. In fact it was so relaxing that mom took a snoozer at our only stop at the, I forget what it was called, but it had a bunch of flowers; conservatory I think. Anyway, when the tour ended, our very nice bus driver took us on our very own tour, well actually he just took us to the south side of the city to the Museum of Science and Industry, where we spent the rest of the day. This was my very favorite museum. We could have spent a couple of days there. It was huge. There are some amazing exhibits. So instead of talking about them, I will just show a few pictures. One of my favorite exhibits was the farm and the space. I also really enjoyed the yester year exhibit. Oh, how I am sure life was simpler 50 years ago. The space exhibit shows a televsion event from the day the first person landed and walked on the moon. It was pretty neat. I was very dissapointed because the human heart exhibit wasn't going to be open until June. We missed it by a few weeks. I would have loved to walk through a human heart. I guess I will just have to go to Chicago again someday. We then took the bus back to the city where the other girls had to get a sample of two different popcorn's to see which had the best. I think our favorite was Nuts on Clark. By then we were beat and decided to leave the city the same time as the rest of the city was getting off of work. Again, it was amazing to see the hords of people leaving the city.
I'm a daughter, sister, favorite auntie, friend, physician assistant, lover of candy, tulips, fruit, a good salad, traveling adventures, a good book, style, flip flops, spinach shakes, Boise State Football and cooking, who happened to be diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer in June 2013 and will fight like no other to live a positive, happy, vibracious, exciting life as a survivor and overcomer!