Saturday, January 30, 2010


Each winter I wait for snow. Kentucky doesn't usually see much in the way of snow but occasionally I am pleasantly surprised by Mother Nature. Like our second winter here when one storm brought us 22" of snow and closed school for a week. :) To date that is the most snow I've seen in Kentucky at any given time and that was about 13 years ago!

About 4 days ago the talk began of a winter storm coming. It's big news here when ANY snow is coming let alone something more than a dusting! That is all we heard about for days. I kid you not when I tell you that schools began closing Thursday night (in the southern counties) for Friday's anticipated snow!

It was to begin for us at about 6:30-7:00 Friday night. It didn't.

By 8:00 I thought it was a bogus forecast.

By 9:00 I was wishing that Tim and I had done what we joked about for date night -- just getting in the car and drive south to FIND the snow of which they spoke.

By 9:30 I hated all weathermen and wonder how they can even hold down a job given how often they are wrong.

By 9:45 I decided I was going to stop looking out the window.

By 10:00 I had to walk the dog and as I was headed back across the lawn what to my wondering eyes should appear???? A SNOWFLAKE! WOOO-HOOO!!!!!!!! :D

Overnight the snow fell and I woke up to 5 glorious inches of SNOW...Finally!

Happy snowflakes! ******** :)

These pictures were out our back door at 10 pm last night as the snow started...

Monday, January 25, 2010

Monkey Madness...

Sometimes I think back on funny things that have happened in our family --something someone has done or said -- and it seems that no matter how much time has passed, we laugh just as hard retelling the story as we did when it originally happened! For us the Bruster's story is one such story! Here is one more story written down for our posterity.....

We have an ice cream store in our town called Bruster's. It's a unique place in the fact that they have unusual flavors of ice cream.

They have lots of flavors! Just to name a few there is Birthday Cake, Banana Chocolate Chip, Cotton Candy Explosion (cotton candy flavor with Pop Rocks in it for the explosion!), Chocolate Raspberry Truffle, and one that Tim had called Monkey Madness. He doesn't remember exactly what's in it except that it's enough to make a monkey mad! :)

We don't go to Bruster's very often. Since opening a few years ago we have been there a grand total of two times. The ice cream is wonderful but it is expensive.

Several years ago, (on our second visit) we took my parents to Bruster's when they came to visit us from New York. We went up to the window and studied the menu to see what fun flavor we each wanted to try. With so many flavors to choose from it can be quite a process just making up your mind!

As we stood there trying to decide, we had all placed our orders...everyone but Tim. He was under pressure to make a selection from the long list of possibilities. Feeling that all eyes were on him he decided to go with the familiar flavor he had before, Monkey Madness.

Well, Tim didn't see Monkey Madness on the menu, he was just remembering what he'd had the last time and he knew it was "monkey something". Looking around he said to the girl at the window,

"I'll take...ummm.... Monkey Brains."

With a furrowed brow, a questioning look (and I am sure a stifled laugh), she asked, "Do you mean Monkey Madness?"

"Yeah that's it! I knew it was Monkey something!"


In our family we are so blessed to have someone who can take an ordinary trip to an ice cream store and turn it into a family memory that lives on!!! Thanks Tim! (I heart you!) :)

Friday, January 22, 2010

Conan Who?

*Disclaimer: This post is longer than what is typical for me but the story had to be told for our posterity!

Okay, I will say it....I am really irritated that Jay Leno has gotten his way and is able to land back into his same late night TV time slot that he gave up for his prime time show. He seemed to think it was a wonderful idea at the time. In the process of that push back into late night, Conan O'Brien gets pushed from the NBC nest and I have yet to hear where he will land.

Now, Tim and I have not always been Conan fans. Truth is that he was on too late at night for us to really even know if we liked him. Midnight was pushing the envelope for both of us. But once he bounced into Jay Leno's 11:30 time slot we were surprised to find that we enjoyed his monologue.

We used to really enjoy Jay Leno's monologue too back in his early days of taking over for Johnny Carson. Jay Leno was funny without being vulgar. I wish that could be said about him today but it can't.

Last July Tim was unexpectedly hospitalized to have a procedure called a cardiac ablation. It was because his heart rate was way to fast for too long...if you think 146 beats per minute is too fast.

The day it all happened he was in for his check up with the ENT following up on his progress through surgery, radiation, feeding tubes and the like. The nurse routinely took his blood pressure and heart rate and that is when the problem began to come to light.

They told Tim what his heart rate was and then asked him if he felt alright. Tim's reply was, "Well, actually, no I don't." From there he went for an EKG, then to our family doctor for a repeat EKG and then our family doctor made a call to the cardiologist. They had to decide whether to bring Tim in right then or if he could wait till morning. The ultimate decision was to let him wait until morning but gave him instructions that if he had any chest pain whatsoever he was to get to the ER immediately. Okay, so it was a long night.

So, by the next afternoon Tim was in for a cardiac ablation and what started out as an out patient procedure turned into an overnight stay for him. After having this particular procedure done you have to lay flat on your back for a number of hours. Tim had a few complications so he had a few extra hours to wait . By then though his back was really hurting and he kept moving to get comfortable and asking when he could sit his bed up to relieve the pain. They finally gave him pain medication so he could tolerate the wait. They told him that when it was 11:30 pm he could sit up. 11:30 was a familiar time for Tim -- it was when Conan O'Brien comes on. That pleased him that his time to sit up coincided with him being able to watch Conan. That was the benchmark of having the freedom to sit up again and be more comfortable.

Before I continue on I have to say..... Most of you know Tim personally and you know what a mild mannered man he is. He isn't quick to get angry. He's always the diplomat and peacemaker. Not many things make him truly angry. Keep that in mind.....and the fact that he had pain medication that knocked him for a loop! :)

The medicine began to take effect and Tim dozed in and out of sleep and babbled things occasionally that made me laugh. He was entertaining while I talked to his father on the phone updating him about what was going on. Tim is not one to have a lot of medication so when he gets some it tends to pack a punch. It doesn't take much to make him loopy and that night in the hospital tipped the scales for him!

When the magic hour of 11:30 arrived Tim was quick to remember that it was "time for Conan" and that he could finally stop laying flat on his back. As he raised his bed up into a more tolerable position he asked that I turn the TV on so he could see Conan so I began flipping channels looking for NBC and Conan's familiar face.

So I am flipping channels looking for Conan. It didn't take long to realize that there were only 4 channels to be had on that TV and NBC was not one of them. I ran through the channels a few times hoping that maybe I just missed it but it didn't change the fact that NBC was not to be found. I told Tim that the TV didn't have NBC on it and that he wouldn't be able to watch Conan after all. Tim took the remote from me to prove me wrong. He went through the channels multiple times and kept telling me that NBC had to be there! When the remote failed to locate NBC Tim told me to check the TV (that is mounted high on the wall, near the ceiling) to see if there is a button to scan the TV to find NBC. I gave a half hearted look at the TV, squinting to see if there truly was any kind of button there to do what he asked but there was not.

By this point Tim is beginning to get agitated....really agitated. He kept saying in a demanding tone,

"I want to see Conan!"

I told him I knew he did but the hospital didn't get NBC so he couldn't. His reply, as he continuously flipped channels was,

"I am getting mad!"

"I am getting angry!"

"I am getting really angry!"

His final declaration of his anger was,

"I am so angry I'm going to swear!!"


To my surprise Tim then said that he was going to call the nurse! He wanted someone to come in and find NBC! I cringed at the suggestion but that didn't deter him at all. He rang for the nurse and with slurring and mumbles that sounded as though he had had too much to drink, he told the nurse that he couldn't find NBC and could she come in and find it for him. She politely told him to keep flipping the channels because she was sure it was there. He continued to complain that NBC was not on the TV and the nurse finally gave the reply that probably all nurses give at one time or another..... "Okay, I'll send someone in." Will it surprise you that a nurse never came??? BWHAHAHAHA! No, it didn't me either! :)

Well, Tim showed remarkable restraint in the fact that he never did swear as he said he was. Maybe it was enough for him just to threaten such an act of open rebellion! Part of me was curious to hear just what he would have said in his anger about not being able to watch Conan!

I am afraid that Conan leaving his current time slot after tonight could stir the same emotion that was tweaked that night in the hospital when NBC couldn't be found. Tim warned me with that hospital episode that apparently he has swear words and he's not afraid to use them!

Or maybe he IS afraid since he never actually used them! :) I'll let you know if that part of story changes when Conan is no longer on come Monday.

Monday, January 18, 2010

There's Always Something To Smile About....

With the start of the new year comes thoughts of leaving the unpleasant events of 2009 behind in the dust...or snow, depending on what you are experiencing in the weather department.

I am sure we are in good company with those wishing for a better year ahead but before we leave 2009 completely behind I had to reminisce on some humorous sights along the way.
There was just something funny about this car with a handicap license plate and a bumper sticker for the Lexington Striders Walking Club!

This sign was in the parking lot where we parked for a wedding reception! So, just how do they know if we weren't a Boone Center customer???

A little grin from this guy somewhere in Wisconsin....

And again in Wisconsin...Moose Jaw Pizza delivery cars!

Does this look like anything remotely close to the McDonald's cheese burgers you see in their advertisements??? No, we didn't think so either.

And is there anyone out there who feels safe in a Smart Car? It reminds me of a clown car you'd see at the circus!

And my personal favorite...

This was a sign at the cancer center where Tim goes for his appointments..... We are thinking that it was maybe a poor choice of words!


That said, there's always something to smile about! :)

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Winter Makes Me Want To.....

....lick a gingerbread house!

Not really, but the girls did! :) As they bid farewell to the Christmas gingerbread house they gave it a lick(s) goodbye!

But winter does make me want to cheer!

Over the past several weeks winter settled in over Kentucky and I confess, I have loved it. For nearly two weeks temperatures didn't even sneak above freezing until yesterday and then today the last evidence of our minimal snow waved goodbye. I swear I could hear it screeching in its best Wizard of Oz wicked witch voice, "I'm melltting.....!" But I saw no flying monkeys so maybe it was a figment of my imagination.

Although we didn't see much snow (only about 3 inches or so) it was enough to bring school to a screeching halt for two days and happily those two days fell at the end of the week so it gave us a 4-day weekend! That was heaven for me -- snow AND 4 days home! I confess again, I didn't complain...I cheered (and probably louder than the kids)!
I do hope we haven't seen the last of the snow for this winter. There is something so cozy about fuzzy socks, slippers, corn bags, sweaters, a fire in the fireplace, a basket of hats and mittens, hot chocolate with lots of marshmallows, and even snowy boots and clothes strewn on the floor at the back door.
*We are liking the Thumbs Up sign these days! Jordan does that a lot in his pictures he's sent home from Brazil. We like to think it is like sending word that "all is well". If you want to take a peek at his letters and pictures you can go to

Friday, January 8, 2010

Reflections of 2009

The beginning of a new year often brings reflections on the previous year and the events that shaped that year.

For us, 2009 is a year never to be forgotten. From start to finish is was like no other.... From January to December it was like coming full circle ~ from sickness to wellness; from the depths of despair to hopeful, thankful hearts; from darkness into light. What a year it was....

~ Still reeling from a cancer diagnosis in mid-December, in early January Tim had surgery to remove lymph nodes, his external jugular vein and the muscle that runs down the side of his neck on the left side.
~Wonderful ward members gave us gift cards for our Restaurant Bucket List

~Two weeks after Tim's surgery was the start of his 35 radiation treatments and several chemotherapy rounds.

    ~47 found me (even though I was hiding out) and nature gave me a wonderful snow and ice storm as a present!

~Tim goes through the month having radiation 5 days a week and gets worse with each treatment

~Tim gets his feeding tube put in because the radiation has made it impossible for him to eat anymore.

~Jacob lives to see 15 :)

~Two weeks into March Tim finishes radiation

~Two days later he is hospitalized

~My sister, Cretta, came from New York and stayed with us for a week. Her visit was timed perfectly that she was here during the time that Tim was in the hospital.

~Young Tim and Lisa come to visit for a week and we celebrate his dad getting better and Young Tim having birthday #23

~In mid-April Tim begins to feel well enough to begin working half days!
~May 7th Tim worked his first full day!
~ I attend Time Out For Women in Cincinnati, Ohio

~Tim is a guest writer on my blog

~I spoke at a Young Singles fireside

~Abigail is in her middle school play, Aladdin
~Jordan turns 19 and submits his mission papers

~Abigail and Annah attend 4-H camp for a week

~Tim and I celebrated our 24th anniversary by going to Riverbend to see the Mormon Tabernacle Choir perform. We received tickets in the mail and to this day we do not know who it was that sent them to us! We were shocked, amazed and grateful.

~Abigail attended her first Girl's Camp and had a fantastic time!

~Jacob and Abigail are both able to go on the Youth Conference trip to Palmyra, New York -- what an experience!

~Tim has a procedure called cardiac ablation and stays over night in the hospital

~Jacob attends EFY in Bowling Green, Kentucky

~Jordan receives his mission call to the Belo Horizonte, Brazil Mission and leaves October 20

~Abigail turns 12

~We bring our puppy, Ella, home :)
~I became a clock watcher again as another school year began

~Andrew celebrates birthday #22
~Tim celebrates birthday #52

~Young Tim and Lisa move from Provo, Utah to Tempe, Arizona

~My blog celebrated it's one year anniversary

~Tim's feeding tube comes out! He's free!
~We make a trip to New York to help out with my parents

~Tim takes Andrew, Jordan and Jacob rock climbing at Torrent Falls

~We take a trip to Minnesota to see Tim's family. That was the first time that his family has seen him since his cancer diagnosis

~Marissa Noe takes our family pictures at Shaker Village

~Jordan leaves for Provo MTC on October 21

~Annah turns 10

~We make another trip to to New York to take care of more things for my parents

~Thanksgiving finds us *very* thankful that Tim is okay in spite of choking and placing a call to 9-1-1 (that was able to be cancelled!)

~Tim has a CT scan and it shows no sign of active cancer -- what a wonderful blessing!

~Abigail is in her middle school play Beauty and the Beast where she played a villager and a vase!

~Abigail plays the flute in her band concert

~Annah is in her 4th grade play, The Elf Impersonator

~Jordan is granted a hard to come by visa and leaves snowy Utah for his first summer in Brazil!

~Christmas time brings us thankful hearts with reminders that the most important things in life are not things.

Welcome 2010....come show us what you have in store!