Wednesday, April 30, 2014

It's Promising to Be a Brighter Day!

It was a hard morning this morning.  I woke up to dogs barking in the bedroom.  Mel let them in as he was getting ready for work, and didn't realize they would bark.  I had taken the bark collar off of the puppy since I put them in the shop for the night.  Then he let them out in the backyard and they climbed under the fence to race around the neighborhood and bark.  I couldn't get them to come in.  So Mel went out and got them.  I was not happy with that puppy!  Max doesn't act that way when he is not here.  So I took the puppy back to Kim's this morning.  I called her to talk of other things, but I happened to mention that I was ready to sell the puppy on Craig's List.  And she said, "Oh no!  We'll take him back!"  So that is good.  I love the little guy, but he is definitely too much energy and upkeep for an old lady.  I need a mellow Max.  He seems much happier without Mugsy climbing and jumping on him.  Whereas, Kim's other dog, Ollie, seemed thrilled to have Mugsy back.  And Mugsy is thrilled to be back.  So it is a happy ending to a story that was beginning to turn sour.  I think my main objection was that he kept jumping up and scratching me, no matter how many times I would demand that he stay "down".  And well, with a blood thinner, scratches are not good!  Even a small scratch takes a lot of pressure and a bandaid to stop the bleeding.  And I was beginning to feel embarrassed about my arm full of red scratchy blotches:)
Now I am back home.  Kim lives about a half an hour away from here.  So I have had a good outing.  I even went to Costco on my way home to pick up a few things for Mel while I am away and gas up the car.  I want to be ready for leaving for Women's Conference after class tomorrow.  I am really excited to go!  Especially since I heard that Liz Lemon Swindle will be there with her latest paintings.  It's too bad I will only get one day.  But honestly, it will be plenty!
I had fun painting in class yesterday.  I am really liking the newest painting.  We aren't allowed to take pictures of it yet.  But when we are I will.  The models are from photos, and I picked ones that are really interesting.  And I think it will be lovely.  At least it is so far:)
Well, that is all.  I hope all is well in cyberspace today!  I am pretty sure things will be much calmer here!  HAVVVVVVVVVVVVVGW!!!!!  Melody

Tuesday, April 29, 2014


I have been painting this morning...and last night.  I am trying to get the anatomy right on this face I have been working on.  And I think I am almost there.  But then I take a picture....and realize I have a whole new problem....the hand on her head.  So it is back to the board.  And then I worry that I am using too much detail.  It is a little confusing.  My teacher wants us to use large brushes and paint less exactly....but I like to paint in little details.  And it is for me....right?  Not some academy in New York or Paris or somewhere.  Sigh! it is so far.  This is only a corner of the picture.
And that is all for now.  HAVVVVVVVVVVVVGW!!!  Melody

Monday, April 28, 2014


OK, so I promised to take notes.  Eleven year old facts.  This is just from breakfast this morning.
"Grandma...all liquids... if you put a piece of paper or something in the will climb!  Cool!"  (As he is putting paper of some kind in his chocolate milk.)
"See this white thing in my pancake?" I answer, "Yeah, it looks like an undissolved piece of flour."  "Nope, it's an oat, 'cuz oats turn white when you cook them!"  Me..."Really?" Tay..."Yep!"
"And Grandma....always remember...your friends and family are always family...always!...Sometimes!"
I love it.  I love listening to the logic of an eleven year old.  He is so certain of everything.  And it reminds me of myself.  I can still remember my folks standard answer..."Are you sure?"  And I always was, because that is how you feel at 11...sure of the world and your place in it.
Now I am not so sure.  I spout off what I think is a fact, and then I back track.  Maybe I know that...maybe I don't.  Is it wisdom?  Or just old age.  You decide.
This morning was great though.  We (Taylor and I) got things done around here, and then we went and got Liz and Alex and spent some time swimming.  Then it was time for lunch.  I drove them through Carl's Jr.  I got them fed and took them home, and then went and got Mel from work and took him and me (objective case) to lunch at the pizza place downtown.  Then I stopped on my way home and got some milk at Walmart.  And guess what?  The day is almost done.  And also I am ready for a lie down.  I am really exhausted after all of that exercise and running around.  I had planned to paint, but I am going to nap first.  Then if I still feel motivated I will paint.  And sadly that is how fast time goes every day.  Remember when it seemed like time dragged on and on?  I think that must have been another time zone.  It is never draggy now.
Well, have I wasted another good minute of your time?  I hope so.  Take care and HAVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVGW!!!!!  And happy family night!  Melody

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Enjoying the Sabbath

Shalom!  Today I taught a lesson to the 11 year old boys in Primary. Taylor came, so it was especially fun.  The lesson was about Jacob and his father in law...Laban.  We talked and read about how Jacob loved his cousin, Rachel, and how he agreed to work seven whole years for Laban, so he could marry her.  The boys thought it was pretty terrible that Laban switched daughters on him and Jacob actually married her sister, Leah.  And how Laban then required another 7 years of labor to marry the daughter Jacob loved (although he only had to actually wait a week to marry Rachel.)  I love those Old Testament stories. They are full of surprises!  And they help to open up discussions. We talked about honesty and how important it was to be true to your word.  As I was teaching them, I was impressed that here was a group of very fine young men. Naturally they are a little wiggly, but they have been taught well of the finer things of life, and I think they will grow into good and honorable men.  It really was fun to teach them today.  And they loved my cookies!  I learned in a tutoring class at BYU that food was one of the best teaching tools, and I have found that to be true;)
Now I am home, with my feet up.  I think it helps those damaged veins to do their work better. And it certainly makes for a good excuse of why I need help with the dishes.  Taylor is home with us.  For some reason he really likes hanging out with Grandma and Grandpa.  And we enjoy his company.  He has such fun ideas about life.  I am always hearing things from him that he has learned from the internet...not always completely true, but edited by an 11 year old mind.  I will have to take notes, because I can't think of a specific example just now.  But I know you would find it as amusing as I do.
And now I think I am going to rest and enjoy the rest of this lovely Sabbath day.  Have a lovely evening in cyberspace!  Melody

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Worry Wart

Greetings!  I have had a long day!  And a good one for the most part.  But I have been kind of grouchy.  I tried writing earlier and decided I sounded like I needed I took a nap:)  I got to bed late last night, after going around with the puppy.  He keeps breaking the rules of house breaking.  So I finally put him in the shop...Max too!  It was so nice!!!  No dogs shuffling around or whining or barking or anything all night long!  Max has always slept in our bedroom, but since the new puppy, he wanders around.  And I think it is part of the cause of my sleepless nights.  So I think we will make the shop a new doggy hotel...for night time.  Mel isn't using it for anything, so he doesn't mind.  And the dogs will get used to it.  It is big and they can wander around to their hearts' content.  I am surprised I didn't think of it before.  Anyway, one problem solved.
The other thing that has me going is a painting I am doing.  I can't get the angle of the face right.  But tonight as I was watching TV with Mel it occured to me I have a wonderful app that is all about anatomy....Le'encorche...or something like that.  So I think I have a model to use for this painting and it will help me to solve the anatomical problems of how an eye looks when the face is turned away from me in this unusual angle.   Such a dilemna!!!  Not usually, but for some reason it is in this painting.  And I have gotten a little obsessed with it lately.  I wish I didn't do that.
And then I remembered I medication this time.  I take a pain med in the morning for my knees.  And I forgot this morning.  So I think that helped me to feel a little irritable.  I don't like hurting.  But I don't realize it is so bad, until it gets so bad.  Then it is kind of too late.  See?  I am just full of negativity today.  I think I am also a little grumpy because I have to sub for a primary class tomorrow.  I won't mind once I am doing it, but the anticipation and preparation are hard.  It is Taylor's class again.  I am not sure he is coming, because they are moving this weekend.  But I will like teaching it better if he does come.  There are about 12 boys in there...11 year olds.  A real sweet bunch of boys.  I just need to bring cookies or popcorn or something and they will be angels.  I just worry about my energy level.  I can do it the little engine.  I just need to believe I can.
So...sorry to vent, but I feel better now:)  I really think underneath it all, I am still worrying about Kenny in Africa.  He looks happy in his facebook photos, and I am trying not to worry.  But I am such an excellent worrier!  Ha!  Take care out there in cyberspace!  HAVVVVVVVGN!   Melody

Friday, April 25, 2014

Friday Night...Date Night...or not:) We get so tired anymore!!!

Happy Friday!  I love Friday!  It is so nice to be so close to the weekend.  As a young girl it meant that we would do some wonderful family adventure...go to the beach, or the city, or just swim at a local pool.  Now it means that I can relax a little from school work.  Although I probably need to go into school tomorrow and do a sketch for our next project.  We are doing a sketch from photographs this time, and we are not allowed to take the photos out of the room.  I am excited though because many of the photos are of people with actual clothes on! :) That is great, because I certainly do not intend a career of painting nudes.  And I could use a little practice with painting clothing.  Ha, ha!  It is so weird, this phase of learning to paint.  Only two more weeks of classes!  I do think I have made some good progress though.  It has been a good semester.  Here are some of my favorite paintings from this class.

Taylor is here again.  I went over to Liz's this morning with Kim and helped her with moving for a couple of hours.  Then Taylor thought he needed to come home with me.  I guess he likes my house because there are no rules here....or at least not many.  He needs rules of course, but there is not much need for them here.  He is so good most of the time, and we just have fun.  Right now he is watching cartoons on TV, and he is excited to see them.  They don't have cable at his house...which is probably a good thing.  But I know it is fun to have a different diversion.  I used to love to go over to our neighbor's and watch their color television.  Ours was black and white until I was a teenager I think.
Do you ever marvel at how far technology has come?  It is absolutely amazing!!!  I guess that computer  technology has really pushed things in many fields.  We have been watching that WWII series, Winds of War, and we both comment on how fakey some of the scenes are.  Especially scenes of big battle ships in the is obvious that it is models in a tub or something.  Pretty funny now, but back then I hardly noticed.
I am having a very good day today.  I think it is because of going to the temple last night.  I get such peace there, and good direction from the spirit.  When I follow those promptings, good things happen.  I am learning to trust that voice and not to doubt it.  It has definitely helped me today.
Well, I guess I had better go watch cool cartoons with Taylor...or take a power nap before Mel gets home from work.  I am still not sleeping great....and yes, I do need to get some ZZZZZquil.  I just keep forgetting.  Oh well.  I hope life is treating you well in cyberspace today.  Take care and have a most enjoyable Friday night!!!  I'm pulling for you!!!!!  Melody

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Looking Forward

Good morning!  It still is morning here.  And I have accomplished a lot!  Ha, ha!  I do keep busy, but I often feel like I haven't done much for all of my busy-ness.  I did get our temple clothes washed and ready for this evening.  And I painted the final strokes on my painting that is due today.  I am not too fond of this painting, but I think it did get me to use color more, which was our teacher's objective.  Other than that I have just done dishes and laundry.  Oh, and fiddled with a photo I took a couple of days ago.  I saw this amazing cloud all lighted up on the horizon as I was driving home, but the photo didn't capture the colors or the brilliance of the actual event.  So I tweaked it a little to include in here.  It really was much more beautiful.  The sky was mostly a huge rain cloud, and then this one white cloud in the a promise of blue skies in the future.  I love the symbolism:)
We have been getting a lot of rain and beautiful clouds.  I wish I had time to paint some clouds.  Maybe in three weeks when school is over.  I think it will be nice to be done for a while.  I keep thinking up things to do.  Maybe it would be fun to vacation a little.  Mel probably can't get away though.  So I would have to drag along a daughter or a sister or a grandchild.  We shall see.  I don't like traveling without Mel much.  Although, I am going to Women's conference next week with most of my daughters.  Sorry Julie!  I wish Oklahoma wasn't so far away!  I am only going for Friday.  Kim and Liz and I are leaving after I am done with classes on Thursday.  Michelle and Amy are leaving Wednesday and will save us a place:)  It should be lots of fun.  And I think I can probably do one day.  Especially if I just stay put and listen to things in one spot instead of trying to catch everything on campus.  It is a big campus!!!  They do have shuttles to most of the major areas, so it isn't as bad as it sounds.  And it is so fun to be together with my daughters!
Well, I guess I had better get going.  I have class and then I am meeting Mel at the temple.  I hope all is well in cyberspace!  Take care and HAVVVVVVVVVGW!!!  Melody

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Wednesday's Adventures

Hola!  I am home after a busy fun day. I picked up Taylor and he went with Jodell and I visiting teaching. He was pretty cute...always curious and charming. He would interject his own opinion at interesting times in our conversation. Later he told me his mom had told him he should keep quiet unless he could count to three first, and that he should not change the subject if he did say something.  I guess he took her advice because he was perfectly well behaved. 
After our visits I took him swimming with me at the Y again. He was determined to pass the swimming test so he could go down the water slide. He had to jump in and swim 12 yards. Just a couple of weeks ago he tried it and he almost drowned. So I was quite proud of his second attempt. He dove in bravely and did a pretty good belly flop. Then his arms started pumping and his legs kicking and somehow he made it down the lane, a little exhausted, but so proud of himself!  Talk about a big smile!! He was definitely grinning ear to ear!!!
So then he had to immediately climb to the top of the water slide and I waited for him at the bottom. He did great!  So he went down a few more times until it was time to go. He has really enjoyed our swimming escapades, but I think he will be even more excited to go now that he can use the water slide. So that is good. It will keep me exercising. 
So all in all it was a great day. And now Mel and I are watching the third episode of Winds of War. It's a nice way to end the day. Hope all is well in cyberspace!  HAVVVGE!!!!!  Melody

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Tuesday Evening Post

Hi again!   I feel like I need to write something positive after my grumpy post from this morning:)  I am feeling so much better!  Painting class is always such a high!  I don't even have to paint well, to feel good.  I just like painting I guess.  And I like the teacher, and all of the students.  Everyone is usually so nice to me, and today was no exception.  And in class we got to have a slide show to begin the day.  We are starting a new project next week, so my teacher wanted to give us some ideas.  It was fun, as he showed slides of famous artwork.  I love to see other people's work, especially the really good stuff.  He had lots of different examples of narrative paintings...good and bad.  And he talked about what was so good about each one.  Even though I have studied most of them before it was good to hear his take on things.  He has a good understanding of deep meanings in art.
So after class I stayed and painted another couple of hours because Joy couldn't swim today.  I guess I will have to go swim tomorrow morning.  Or afternoon.  I have visiting teaching again tomorrow afternoon, if anyone is home.  Last week no one was at home.
So I guess tonight we will watch another episode of the Winds of War.  It's on netflix.  It was made in 1983 and has Robert Mitchum and a few other well knowns.  It is terribly slow, but it is interesting to watch the things leading up to WWII.  We keep remarking how some of it seems to be repeating itself now.  Kinda scary.
I guess Kenny is really in Nigeria.  I am sure they made it to Amsterdam, but I haven't heard anymore.  They were supposed to have a layover there before heading to Nigeria.  And that is all.  I am still pulling for you!  We're definitely all in this together!  Have a most wonderful Tuesday night!!!!  Melody

A Slow Morning!

Good day!  I am sitting here at my computer in my pj's still.  I had a rather bad night.  I woke up about 1:30 with very low blood not all that low.  But enough to make me feel cold and shaky and pretty awful.  Then I made my way to the bathroom and stepped in something cold and slimy, so I turned on the light and little puppy was sick.  My kids used to sing an awful song about diarrhea, and that came to mind.  Anyway, it woke me right up.  After I cleaned up the mess, I headed for the kitchen to drink something sweet.  That went well.  I guess that is the fun part of diabetes.  When your sugars are low you are permitted something sweet:)  No guilt!  And when I got up at six with Mel my numbers were normal again.  But after he left I climbed back into bed.  I know...what a life!  Mel would love to be retired and be able to do that too.  So I try not to let him know:)  But I have a headache that has not left yet.  I guess I am a whiner today.  Sorry!  But I had to tell someone!!!
So this new puppy stuff is kind of hard.  I had forgotten.  This puppy is not well mannered yet either.  He barks incessantly, or he did until I got a bark collar.  He still barks, but it is reasonable now.  But he has the bad habit of jumping up on people.  He is so small it is hard to correct.  And so I feel like the drill sergeant or something.  And half of the time he is full of stickers.  We have lots of tumbleweeds with very prickly stickers all around, so the dogs seem to pick them up.  I think I am getting old.  This has never bothered me before.  Max was just as difficult as a puppy.  But I guess Amy was living here and helped me with him.  I told you I was a whiner today.
I have been working on a painting for class.  I will share a little.  I think it helps me to see what's wrong.  And it adds a little color to my blog:)  I have until Thursday to fix things.  I need much longer of course.  And a few more painting lessons.  But I can see some improvement.  These are colorful because we had three colors of lights on the models.  I should probably paint some eyes in, but the models often close their eyes and nap, so it isn't easy.

Well, I guess I had better get ready for the day.  My headache seems to have gone.  Blogging helps!  Take care and HAVVVVVVVVVVVVGW!!!  Melody

Monday, April 21, 2014

Out of Africa!

So...I figured out why I am so bugged today!  I am sooooo good at stuffing my feelings! I totally forgot that  Kenny is traveling with his girlfriend to Nigeria today, to visit her family that lives there.  I am just a tad nervous about, that is an understatement.  I am soooooo nervous about this!  Last week I was listening to the BBC news as they were reporting all of the kidnappings and murders and terrorist happenings in Nigeria.  It really sounded awful.  But Kenny said it is happening very far away from where they will be.  I sure hope he's right!  I think it is good to be young and trusting and not to think of the worst case scenario for every life event.  I think I have just seen too much to be that way any more.  But I am good at stuffing and pretending like I am not worried.  But then I blame my feelings of anxiety on silly things, like my email account getting hacked.  So now that I have faced my feelings, I am going to take some deep breaths and get back to life as I know it.  Tatafornow!!!!!!  Me

Floating On By (In my hot air balloon!)

Good day to you!  I am trying to have one.  I guess it will become one if I can keep a good attitude.  I don't like getting my email hacked though.  I had bunches of returned emails, that I didn't send this morning.  So if you got one that did send...I am sorry.  I changed my password so hopefully that is over.  Trouble with doing that is I quickly forget the new password.  Yes, I write them down and hide them....but then there is a bit of a problem with that if I can't remember my hiding place.  Yep, it's getting bad!  And so that is why I am having to keep a good attitude today...otherwise I might actually believe I am getting old!  Taylor likes to remind me I am old.  And of course at 11 years old, even 20 seems old.  He was pretty cute the other day though.  We were swimming, and I said something about how fat I was and how embarrassed I felt.  He said, "Grandma, you're not fat!   You're just overweight!"  Ha, ha!  Such a diplomat!
So today I need to just chill.  I think I started out too worked up and that adrenaline starts pumping through my veins and it is hard to calm down.  But I can calm myself.  I like to tell myself stories of all the good things that have happened...instead of the bad.  It does help to calm my nerves.  And listening to conference.  I have been listening as I run around town.
Well, I am obviously full of hot air today.  I hope things are good in your corner of cyberspace!  Take care and HAVVVVVVVVVVVVGW!!!!  Melody

Sunday, April 20, 2014

He Is Risen!

  Because of Him!  Happy Easter!  I wanted to share this video.  It is excellent and really does tell of the real meaning of Easter!  I have enjoyed seeing it everywhere on Facebook!
It is a happy day here. Church was exceptionally nice today.  Liz and Taylor came, and the choir did great, and Mel got called to the high council.  I have been keeping very quiet about this, but last week Mel and I had an interview with the stake president.  He asked Mel if he would be a member of the high council.  It has been so hard not to tell anyone, or write about this.  Mel is glad for the new calling.  He has been the ward clerk for three bishops since we moved here to Nampa, with a small break as the high priest group leader.  And he was feeling the need for a change.  I think he will enjoy giving talks in different wards.  He was a speech and drama major at BYU, and he has always enjoyed speaking.  I know there is more to the calling too.  He will be helping with the orchard, family preparedness, and family history.  All things we could do better with, so it will be a good excuse for us to stretch a little.   I am excited for him.  He is at a meeting now:)  They set him apart, and then said he had a meeting!  Ha, ha!  The 14th article of faith....we believe in meetings!
When he gets home, we are leaving for Glenns Ferry to be with our daughter Amy and her family.  She generously offered to do dinner.  I think she may have read my blog:)  Anyway, it will be fun.  Michelle and her family are also coming...and Taylor.  He wanted to stay with us again today.  And Liz likes having a break.
Well, that is all.  Except the gospel is true.  So have a happy Easter Sunday!  I hope you get a lot of chocolate!  Or peeps:)  Take care and remember I am still pulling for you!!!  HAVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVGreatWan!!!!!  Melody

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Special Day (Saturday Is)

Our son in law working hard!

Good merry morning!  I am here at Mel's shop. He is working and I made copies of music for choir for tomorrow. I thought we could just use hymn books but the choir members wanted to see the real music. Luckily it's a Sally DeFord arrangement and I can make copies legally. And I am thankful for people who can read music:)
So have I ever taken pictures of the shop?  Here are a few. It has grown since Mel moved downtown.
We are getting things done today. Lots of running around. And I suppose I should do something for Easter. But I probably will let the other grandmas do the dinner this year. I just don't have the energy!
So I hope all is going well in cyberspace today. Things are definitely hopping around here!!  Pun intended!  Hippity hoppity Easter's on its way!!!  HAVVVVGW!!!! Melody

Friday, April 18, 2014

Thank Goodness for Friday!!!!

Good day!  I am having a happy day today.  I woke up thinking about something I remembered from class yesterday.  I went to the hairdresser yesterday to get my hair cut and colored.  And so when I went to school a few people commented about how they liked it...normal stuff.  But there is one young man in my class whom I really admire.  He is so sweet and very open.  And he asked if I had gotten my hair cut.  I said, "Yes, and colored too.  It is supposed to make me look years younger!!"  He smiled and said, "Yes, it makes you look at least 20 years younger, which makes!"  That made us both laugh.  It is nice to have kind friends! Especially as I am growing older and my self image is beginning to suffer.
So this morning I invited Liz and family to go swimming, but when I got there we realized the car seat was in the car with Adrian.  I offered to go get it, but Liz said she was tired and needed to rest anyway. So she stayed home and fed Alex and put him down for his nap.  And just Taylor and I went to the Y to swim.  I love it there!  They have a current pool...the lazy river.  I can't remember if I have mentioned it before, but it is lots of fun.  There is a current that sweeps you around the pool, and even a whirlpool in the middle.
This picture is from the internet...I don't know anyone:)
And it is helping Taylor to learn to swim better.  He did really well today!  He is even learning to do the crawl.  It is hard for him because he is so skinny and doesn't float too easily.  But he is catching on!  It won't be long before he is swimming like a fish...minus the gills of course.
After swimming we stopped at Costa Vida for some Mexican grill.  I guess Taylor was starving!  He gulped his food down in less time than I had to put my napkin on my lap.  So I got a lid for my salad and drove him home.  I have forgotten how fast growing boys can eat!  I am having fun being able to spend some time with him.  It won't be very long before Grandma will not be a welcome friend.  But I think we are making memories that hopefully will get him through some of the tough times ahead.  They are moving again and I just remember that it was tough to make new friends and feel good about yourself.  I only moved twice growing up.  My own kids got moved least a dozen times...maybe more.
Well, I guess I had better get painting.  I am working on a painting from class.  It is the one with the three colors of light shining on the models.  I think I can improve what I already have painted with some careful paint mixing.  It is hard in class.  I always feel like I am being watched.  I think I paint better at home....although I do get such good direction from my teacher at school.  So if I could just be less inhibited and timid at that's going to happen!  Sigh!
I hope life is treating you well in cyberspace today.  It is so beautiful here, it is hard to imagine it is not like that all over the world.  I wish it could be.  Take care and remember I am pulling for you!  We're all in this together!  HAVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVGW!!!!!!  Melody

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Thursday - Hair Day

Good sleepy morning!  I am fine, but according to Taylor he didn't sleep all night!  I doubt that, but he does seem particularly tired. I brought him with me to the hairdresser's. And Victor, the owner, talked him into getting a haircut....after my asking him...and Taylor seems thrilled!  So that is good. Victor is from Peru. He used to be a lawyer, but his wife's beauty shop was doing so well and he really hated being a lawyer, so he went to beauty school. And he is really good. His wife Denae, does my hair. She has for the last 12 years. So we are pretty good friends. And they used to be in our ward. Mel and Victor have played a lot of early morning basketball. I am glad for a little help from my friends!
So for the rest of today...I will take Taylor home. Then I have art class. I am liking my painting in there. Although I am trying to figure out an upper arm right now. It's always challenging. 
Tonight I am meeting Mel at the temple. That will be the perfect way to end the day!  HAVVVVGW!!!!  Melody

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

A Long Day!

Hola!  I am with Taylor at his eye doctor appointment. It is crowded here. I guess a lot of little kids need glasses. We are having a good time in spite of the wait.
He loves to read and is currently absorbed in a High Five magazine. I think it may be the modern version of Highlight magazine. 
This morning I went to book club. It was so great to see friends!  We read a book about North Korea. It was pretty sad what people have gone through in that country!  Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea is the name of the book if you are interested.
I went to get Taylor right after book club.  We had a great day.  We had lunch at Red Robin, then the eye doctor appointment.  Then we went swimming.  Then I realized I had forgotten my iPad at book club, so we drove over to Meridian to pick it up, but then I realized no one would be home til later, so we went over to the Village shopping center to get a look at the fountain.  Taylor had never seen it before, so he was delighted.  He took a video which I posted on facebook.  Taylor's video
I also took a few pictures.  We had fun!
We both had swim hair:)

 We got frozen yogurt and then sat on a very comfortable sofa out on the patio by the fountain in the sunshine.  I think it was the highlight of our day.  After that we drove over to get my ipad, then on home by way of Mel's shop.  We picked him up and then drove over to the pizza parlor for dinner.  We are all stuffed and a little sunburned.  But we had a great day!  And now it is about time to just veg!  Hope your day was as fun!  Take care and HAVVVVVVVVGE!!!!!!  Melody

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Improving the Shining Moments

Good afternoon!  I am home from school, so it is probably evening. :)  It was a good day for painting.  I think I was able to solve a few of the problems in my painting.  And I can tell I am doing better.  I threw away a painting this morning that I did a couple of years ago.  I couldn't believe how bad it was! Seriously!!  I know I have learned a lot about painting since then, so it is a good thing.
I am pretty tired tonight.  I did take a short nap before school this morning, which helped.  But I seriously need to do my sleeping at night.  So I guess I will get some medicine and make it a priority.  It seems so silly.  I sure never had any trouble sleeping when I was younger!  But then a lot was different when I was younger.  So I guess I will just have to adjust.  Yeah, right!
So I hope all is happy in cyberspace this evening.  I like to think of cyberspace as somewhere out in real space...with pretty stars and planets:)  Funny, I know.  I guess it is all in the words.  They should call it connective world, or cool, digital, amazing, magical somewhere.  Oh well.  Take care out there!!!  And HAVVVVVVVGN!!!  Melody

Cloud Cover

What everyone else saw
I got up because I couldn't sleep, and also to see the lunar eclipse, but there is a cloud cover here and so I couldn't see it.  But the sky was kind of eery anyway....perhaps reflecting the light from the city.  I found this photo on facebook of what it looked like for those who did not have a cloud cover.  Beautiful!
We went to see Monuments Men last night for our FHE.  I thoroughly enjoyed it.  I kept thinking how amazing it would be to see so many great art works all together and up close.  It did make me sad though, thinking of all of the Jewish people who had been annihilated.  In one scene they found a barrel of gold fillings, a reminder of the hate and greed that existed then, and probably continues today in one form or another.  I cannot get my mind around it really.  I don't like to think that people can be so cruel.
But I know they can be.  Even our sweet granddaughter, Josie, was called names by a couple of kids at her school because of the color of her skin.  Such small minds that judge another person at all.  I like what the scriptures say, "Judge not, that ye be not judged."  We generally know so little about each other, that we should withhold judgement, and let the Lord be the righteous judge.  I guess it is easier said than done, but I am going to make a conscious effort to be kinder, and withhold my judgement of others.
I have been thinking about paint all day and most of tonight.  I have enjoyed mixing paints for my chart.  But then I think of the colors and how I might use them in my painting.
This side is done

This side I need to finish by the first of May
 I guess that is the idea, but it doesn't help with my sleeping.  I guess I had better remember to get some more Zzzquil.  That was really helping with my insomnia.  I really don't enjoy nights when I cannot sleep.  And the next day I am so wiped out!
Well, I suppose I have complained sufficiently.  Maybe I will go try to get some ZZZZZZ's.  Sweet dreams!  Melody

Monday, April 14, 2014


Good windy, blustery day!  It is really blowing it does most of the year it seems.  I kind of like the sound of the wind blowing, but it is terrible on hairdos.  I am planning on visiting teaching today.  But we may not be able to catch anyone home.  Jodell called and we may be able to see one of our sisters....who isn't answering her phone:)  We will go see, as Jodell leaves on Friday for the rest of the month.  I may end up a lone visiting teacher.
I have been painting on my color mixing chart this morning.  It is kind of a nice project.  I enjoy mixing the paints, although it is slow work.  I have half and a few more rows done now.  I am going to work on it later too. I am supposed to bring it into class tomorrow, so he knows I am doing something.  I guess he doesn't want us hurrying this one.
Well, I hope today brings joy and gladness.  I am feeling pretty good here.  Painting does that!  HAVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVGW!!!  Melody

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Beautiful Day!

Good Sabbath!  Mel has already left for bishopric meeting. Sundays are busy for every other day!  I guess it is good he keeps busy.  He enjoys having lots to do.
Yesterday was a fun day with Granddaughters' birthdays.  They both had fun. We went to the singing fountain at the's a new shopping center.  We had lunch and shopped just a little.  Then I opted out of any further shopping and took them home:)
Ellen and I
Mel and I were going to go out, but we were both too tired.  That seems to be the normal here anymore.  By the end of the day we are both "done"!  I guess it is a good thing we enjoy just being together or we might get bored;)
Today is choir practice.  We are only having this one practice and then we are singing for church next week for Easter.  We are singing a simple song, so it should be fine if enough people come.  Participation is the hardest part. Although so far we have managed to get enough people.  Our time schedule changed in January though, and there is not a place to meet in the church before or after our meeting. So we meet at someone's house, which doesn't work as well.  SIGH!!!  I need to have faith that people will come.
I hope your Sabbath day is full of peace and reassurance of the Savior's love!  We are so blessed!  Shalom!  Melody

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Happy Saturday!

Good morning!  Today is going to be another good day, although the weather man says it will be windy.  It is my granddaughter's birthday, and another granddaughter's birthday on Tuesday, so Kim and I are taking them to lunch today....and maybe shopping.  I personally do not like shopping anymore.  Actually I never have enjoyed it.  My mom used to say I was hard to take shopping because I got so mopey.  And things haven't changed much.  I do not like the lights in the mall, and the crowds of people, and having to walk and stand around so much.  I guess I don't fit the female role model in this area.  I kind of like to just go get what I need and leave....unless it is Costco:)  I do enjoy meandering in there.
Yesterday was lots of fun.  And I took some pictures.  We didn't get to swim because the pool was closed for cleaning.  But we still had an ice cream on the patio and watched the scenery.
The view from the patio

A closer can see the mountains better
Looking up the north fork of the Payette
Looking down the north fork of the Payette
And we also went by the house where my mom's cousin, Edith and her husband used to live on the Payette River, where the middle fork and the north fork of the river converge together.  I miss them so much, and it was fun to visit the spots we used to fish.  Kenny especially liked fishing here.  We also stopped to snoop around a house for sale up there.  I would love to have a home up there to visit.  There is a golf course and a swimming pool as well as a gorgeous river.  It is one of our favorite places!
Well, I just wanted to send a few happy wishes out to cyberspace.  I hope all is well and happy and full of good times.  HAVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVGW!!!!!  Melody

Friday, April 11, 2014

A Day of Leisure :)

Good morning!  I am planning a day of fun today.  I have a favorite swimming hole nearby....up in Crouch.  It's a hot springs swimming pool, I know I have mentioned it before.  Anyway, it seems like a good destination...and I can get my swimming in.  I think I have Kim convinced to go up there with me.  So it should be a good day.
And it really is spring!  I saw my first snake yesterday...on my front porch.  Luckily it was only a few inches long.  But I hope we don't get any more.  They haven't been a problem so far.

I am also going to go by the little art store in Boise and pick up some paint colors.  I hope they have them.  Otherwise I will order them online...things with exotic names like quinacridone violet and anthriquinone red.  They are for my color mixing chart.  I really like this chart.  It is helpful to remember what colors even look like.  Although I should have no trouble with Prussian blue for awhile.  Yeah, I got it on my hands yesterday, and although I got most of it off, there is still a spot under my left middle fingernail.  I suppose it will be there til the skin and nail wear off:)  Oh the joys of oil paint.  Actually I love oil paint.  It is so forgiving!  Nothing like watercolor that laughs at you when you put the wrong color down.
Well, I hope the day is lovely and joyous for ya'll out in cyberspace today.  Take care and HAVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVGW!!!!!  Melody

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Organizing the Jumble

Guten Tag!  Another bright and shiny day is already underway here.  I was a little tired when I first got up, but now I feel energized and ready to run.  I like this feeling!  I hope it lasts.  I have visiting teachers arriving here soon, then class, and then swimming with my sister.
I am kind of excited to paint today.  And worried too.  I have been trying to figure out how to paint an arm so that it looks right.  The way I had it on Tuesday was not right, but I couldn't figure out what I had done wrong.  My mind has been working on that problem for a couple of days now, so I hope it has it figured out.  It is nice when I don't have to consciously figure things out.  But I kind of think I will have to take a few trips back and forth between the models and my painting today to figure out proportions and positions.
So you probably are that all she thinks about?  Paint and brushes and canvases and problems of proportion?  Well, sometimes that is true.  It is a good distraction from the things in my life that are troublesome.  It seems there is always something or someone to be concerned about.  And I am so good at worrying.  So it is nice to have this occupation in my life that is all consuming at times.  And it also helps to blog.  I am not sure why that is helpful, I just know that when I don't, I get all jumbly in my head.  So maybe it just helps me to organize my thoughts.
Anyhoo, I hope for peace on earth and good will toward all men, and that life is fair and fun in your part of cyberspace today.  Take care and HAVVVVVVVVVVVVVVGW!!!  Melody


Good morning....early!!!!  I woke up and couldn't sleep worrying about a paint brush shipment that hasn't arrived yet.  I know, that is just plain silly.  But I guess my mind had been working this over in my sleep.  So I got up and tracked it:)  UPS is good that way.  And it should arrive tomorrow.  I hope it gets here before I leave for school.  One of the brushes is big and holds a lot of paint and would be perfect for what I am doing.
And now that I have shared that with the world, maybe I can sleep.  I sure hope so!  Me

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Truth Reflects upon Our Senses

Good morning!  It is beautiful and sunny here today.  And I have been thinking of all of the wonderful messages I have heard so far from conference.  I think I will take some time today to listen to the parts I missed.  It is wonderful that you can watch, listen and now read all of the messages.  Here is the link. Conference messages.  One of my favorite is Elder Nelson's talk about truth and faith.  But I really have enjoyed all the ones I have heard so far.  It is so evident to me that the spirit of the meeting is one of truth.
Which brings me to something else.  Yesterday when we were painting in class, our teacher talked about telling a narrative in our head as we are painting...which I always do.  And especially painting in imprimatura, things are a little mysterious at first and you can make up all kinds of stories.  Anyway, the teacher came by my painting and said that he loved how it was progressing....that he could tell there was a story of someone in the painting.  He went on to tell me what he saw.  So then I asked him if he would like to know the story I had in my mind?  He said yes, so I told him how often as I paint I think of Tommy and I had been doing that.  One of the models was holding a book, and I thought of how many times I had read stories to Tommy.  The other model was lying expressionless and it reminded me of Tommy dying and how I couldn't read to him anymore.  It is kind of morbid I guess, but I do tell myself stories as I paint that no one might guess.  I think I got my teacher a little teary eyed.  He liked my story though.  And it made me think, when I am not in a class anymore, I can tell the real stories that are in my head....or in other words, the true stories.  And it reminded me how very important it is to paint as true as is possible.  Does this make sense?  It does to me.  And as I was painting yesterday, it occurred to me that that is the part of painting I have not enjoyed at school....that I am discouraged from painting what is really in my heart.  So I hope I can learn to paint truth.  It will make it all so fun!  I remember Leon Parsons talking about how he tries to paint things as close to the truth as possible.  I think he meant that he paints naturalistically...or realistically.  But I think it is also important to paint the real truth...the truth of the gospel, of Christ and His atonement and resurrection...of eternal families and the relationships that are formed there.  I am anxious to do that.  And I hope I am learning the skills that will allow me to do that.
Well, I guess I had better get to the pressing things around here...laundry mostly.  And a few organizational my closets!!!   I hope all is well and happy in cyberspace today.  I am pulling for you!  We're all in this together!!!!  HAVVVVVVVVVVVVGW!!!!!  Melody

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Today's News...and a little of past news

Greetings!  I'm at school and as our teacher warned the classroom is set up very differently. So I don't know how to set up. I am always uncomfortable with change, and especially when I am not sure what to expect. So I am sitting in the hall waiting for further instruction.
Last nights FHE went very well. We had about 16 people show. And each was prepared to share their favorite scripture from the D&C,  along with a favorite talk from conference.  It was a great meeting of some of my favorite people.  I love to share spiritual things.
So this was written a little earlier today.  My class turned out to be very fun and very different.  We had to paint from memory.  The models were set up at one end of the room with a curtain in the middle of the room.  Our easels were at the other end of the room, facing the wall.  So we literally had to walk over to look at the models, then walk back and paint what we could remember.  I guess the idea is that we will discover what we remember and prioritize most in our painting.  I kind of liked it.  Especially when the teacher came over and told me such nice things about what I had done so far.  He seemed to really like my imprimatura beginnings.  And I like them too.  Now if I can just paint the rest to look good.  It was interesting to see what everyone else was painting.  I guess we will work like this for three weeks.  It is our next to the last painting.  There is only 6 weeks left of school!
I thought I would share some of the better photos from our trip to Oregon.
A little path going into the mossy forest

Just a gnarly old log

Looking at the fog down the beach from us

The sky where we stood.  A patch of blue!

I especially liked the ones of the sky.  It was kind of cool, when we went to the beach, the sun shone just where we were...there was fog up and down the beach in each direction away from us.
Oh, and I shouldn't forget the sign downtown.  Ready?  "What's another word for Thesaurus?"  Ha, ha!  I laughed at that one.  Well, I hope things are happy and well.  Take care and HAVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVGEvening!!!!!!  Melody

Monday, April 7, 2014


Okay, maybe I was a tad optimistic this morning. Our trip home went well, but I got a message about 3...did I need any help with Empty Nester's this evening?  I forgot it is at our house tonight!  It's kind of humorous I guess. I have been cleaning and making food for a couple of hours now. I am too tired to keep it up so I am taking a break. It's really not too dirty. But it is hard for me to clean anything I can't easily reach anymore. I guess people will just have to understand. I doubt I will get graded on this;)  and I am pretty good friends with most of these people. I kind of wonder if anyone else will remember anyway...what with conference. It is not the best night I think.  We probably should have postponed it a week. 
Well I think the cake is done. Have a great evening!  Me

Happy Thoughts!

Good lovely beautiful morning!  Things seem so much better with enough sleep!  And I woke up with a song in my head.  So I looked up the lyrics and I love them!  I had forgotten some of them.
I can see clearly now the rain is gone.
I can see all obstacles in my way.
Gone are the dark clouds that had me blind.
It's gonna be a bright (bright)
bright (bright) sunshiny day.
It's gonna be a bright (bright)
bright (bright) sunshiny day.

Oh, yes I can make it now the pain is gone.
All of the bad feelings have disappeared.
Here is that rainbow I've been praying for.
It's gonna be a bright (bright)
bright (bright) sunshiny day.

(ooh...) Look all around, there's nothing but blue skies.
Look straight ahead, there's nothing but blue skies.

I can see clearly now the rain is gone.
I can see all obstacles in my way.
Here is that rainbow I've been praying for.
It's gonna be a bright (bright)
bright (bright) sunshiny day.
It's gonna be a bright (bright)
bright (bright) sunshiny day.
It's going to be a bright (bright)
bright (bright) sunshiny day.
Yeah, hey, it's gonna be a bright (bright) bright (bright)
sunshiny day.
Anyway, it is going to be a bright sunshiny day.  And we will be home in a few hours.  That's good.  I have plenty to keep me busy!  Mostly I need to buy a canvas and put a coat of gesso on it by tonight so it will be dry by tomorrow's class. And there is always laundry;)
I listened to Elder Nelson's talk before sleep last night.  I like what he said about truth...and showing one's faith in Jesus Christ.  I have always admired him.  But I had no idea he had a daughter that died from cancer.  I was glad he shared a little of her faith. I have been amazed by the faith of many of the children I have known who suffered with cancer. They are a testimony to me of Christ's love for children.  I know my sweet Tommy has a very personal relationship with the Savior.
Well, here's a happy wish for all who read this today!
May God give you...
  • For every storm, a rainbow,
    For every tear, a smile,
    For every care, a promise,
    And a blessing in each trial.
    For every problem life sends,
    A faithful friend to share,
    For every sigh, a sweet song,
    And an answer for each prayer.  HAVVVVVGW!!!!  Melody

Sunday, April 6, 2014


Good Sabbath!  It's been a good Sunday, although we were unable to get Conference.  However we were able to watch all of Saturdays sessions on The Mormon channel.  So we will watch today's there also when we can get decent internet again. What an amazing time we live in!  
We spent last night at the ocean. And tonight in Burns.  Just too tired to go the last 4 hours. But this Best Western is very nice and I am glad for the rest.  I really don't like traveling on Sunday, but Mel needs to be back tomorrow for work.  And I need to prepare a canvas for Tuesday's class.  We are beginning a new painting.
The sessions of Conference we were able to watch were wonderful. I am so grateful for inspired leaders!  I hope life is good in cyberspace this evening.  I'm pulling for you!  HAVVVVGW!  Melody

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Flabbering in the Moss

Good mossy morning!  In this part of Oregon, moss grows everywhere!  It is green and beautiful and pervasive. When I was little my dad used to tell me I was a mossback because I was born in Portland. I didn't have any idea what he meant then. But I get it now. And maybe there is some truth to it. I do love all the green. But the rain, not so much. I think I would long for blue skies if I lived here for very long. It is raining here now. 
So I am up and showered and dressed and hungry!  But Dad and Barb sleep in...for quite a while. Which wouldn't be bad except they want us to go out for breakfast. But not until 10:30...which is 11:30 our time. Practically time for lunch. I may have to cheat. With the insulin I have fairly low blood sugars and I wake up hungry!!!!!!  Grrrrr;)
After breakfast I guess we will go look at the plastic injection machine Mel is interested in and then head for the coast. The gardens we like to visit at Shore Acres will probably be gorgeous by now. I love to go there. And the ocean is beautiful there with steep cliffs. I took a video there of the end of a huge wave and posted it on YouTube some years back. Then YouTube was having some contest. So I renamed it "Epic super sleeper wave" kind of as a joke. I never did figure out how to get into the contest, but I guess it was a good title because it is above 7000 hits. And it must be very disappointing to those who view it. I guess if I was a nicer person I would take it off....or rename it. But I kind of like the joke. Sad, I know. 
Well I am flabbering and Mel is hungry. So HAVVVVVGW!  Melody

Friday, April 4, 2014

Night post

We made it to Sutherlin!  Now to sleep and then to snore!  G'night!!! Melody

Blue Skies Smiling at Me

Good day!  We just had our lunch at the lovely Subway in Baker City.  It is 11:20 here since it is Pacific time. But our body clocks think it is 12:20. It's always kind of amazing to me how sensitive our bodies are to time. 
I am excited to be traveling. I must have a strong explorer instinct because I love to travel. Right now we are driving through the middle of a wide valley. In the distance I can see snow on the mountains. Even though this part of Oregon is dry and pretty much high desert, it is still beautiful. The sage brush is pretty green and with the dark blue mountains, white snow capped peaks, and brilliant blue sky decorated with white and gray cumulus clouds, it is a scene for future landscape painting!
We will probably reach my dad's about time for Red Robin if we don't stop too much. I would like to stop in Portland at an art supply store though so we may not make it til later. 
I hope your day is a happy one out in cyberspace today. HAVVVVGW!!!!  Melody

Thursday, April 3, 2014


Good merry evening!  Life continues to be great for the most part. I even learned some new stuff today!  I went into class a little early and found my teacher there painting. I was able to talk to him some more about my painting which was good. I was kind of in the dark about transitions...what it meant and how to do it. So he showed me on his own painting what he meant and then on mine. Then he showed me how to do it on his painting. I am always amazed at what a good teacher he is. Now I just need to practice what I learned. It is one thing to see things done and a whole new thing to actually do them. 
I came home to find out Mel needs to look at a machine in Oregon this weekend. So we will get to visit my dad. I am excited. He lives too far away!  Or we do I guess. Anyway it will be a quick getaway. And hopefully we can catch  conference on radio or internet. I am really looking forward to it.  You can watch it at if you would like. It is on at 10 am and 2 pm Saturday and Sunday. Many of the church leaders will speak. You can learn a lot!
Well I guess that is the latest from this side. Take care and be happy!  I'm pulling for you!!!!!  HAVVVVVGN!!!!!  Melody


Good morning world!  Today I am a little less optimistic about my painting.  I worried most of the night about it.  And so I painted some more on it this morning.  It still is not quite where I want it, but I have run out of time.  Sigh!  Here it is.
 I worked on the snail and the cup.  Maybe it is hard to tell.  I am getting nervous about this.  I hate when that happens...but it always seems to happen anyway.
So aside from a morning filled with probably unnecessary worry, (is that called fretting?)...I am having a good day.  I have class soon and then swimming.
So that is about all there is.  I hope life is treating you well!  HAVVVVVVVGW!!!  Melody

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Painting to the Beatles

Good day!  It is here.  I have been painting and it is turning out kind of nice for a change.  I have been following some of the suggestions my teacher gave me yesterday, and it seems to be coming together.  So that makes me feel really good.  Here it is.

I changed the shadow on this

I changed this after I took the picture above:)

So for the rest of today I think I am going to go get Taylor and go for a swim.  It is so fun to take him.  He loves that he is learning to swim better, and he really loves it.  He can hardly keep his mouth closed for smiling and laughing so much.  Which makes me happy too.
Then I think tonight we are going to the temple...if Mel can.  He had a machine break down this morning, and I know that will set them back while he tries to fix it.  He usually can, but occasionally he has to bring in the technician from one of the big companies.  I am going to meet him for lunch on my way to get Taylor, so I will find out then.
Anyway, I hope things are going well in cyberspace today.  While I have been painting I have been listening to my itunes and the Beatles Revolver album came on just a few songs ago.  It makes me smile to remember those times that each song reminds me of from high school.  I think I will be humming Beatles songs for the rest of the day!  Take care and HAVVVVVVVVVVVVGW!!!  Melody

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Chicks and Ducks and Geese Better Scurry!

Hola!  I just got back home from a long day at school.  I had a doctor's appointment to begin my day.  It went well.  The doctor is quite pleased with my blood sugars.  And he seemed pleased that I am trying to lose weight.  All good.
Then I had a lovely lunch with Kim and solved most of the world's problems.  Funny how easy it is to solve everyone else's problems.  Much harder to solve your own!
Then I had a few good hours of painting and got some good pointers on my homework.  I really do think I am learning so much in that class!  I got back my midterm portfolio with good grades on everything and some helpful suggestions on how to make things better.
Then I went swimming with my sister Joy and we solved the rest of the world's problems as we swam back and forth, back and forth.  My knee is complaining tonight that I should have stopped a little sooner.  But I am ignoring it.
When I got home I saw a field of lovely birds across the street.

There were lots of white geese, Canadian geese, and ducks and other waterfowl all eating the leftovers from the cornfield.  It was really noisy...not just with honking and quacking, but also a kind of humming sound they were making as they ate.  I didn't know they did that.  It sounded a little like a beehive.  Anyway, it was a lovely moment of time, and I thanked Father once again for the joy it is to live here on this beautiful earth!  I am so blessed!
Well, I just thought I would write a short post before Mel gets home from work.  He is working long hours lately, which is a good sign.  The business is getting busier again!  That is always good.  So I hope things are loverly out in cyberspace this evening.  Take care and remember to count your blessings!!!!  And HAVVVVVVVVGE!!!!!  Melody
P.S.  I almost forgot....Happy April Fool's Day!  I don't think I even got fooled once today.  Pretty amazing!