Sunday, May 31, 2015

Who's Team Are You On?

Good morning!  We are still in Oklahoma. Yesterday our grandson Hunter was baptized. His baptism is the main reason for our visit. He was so excited and nervous too. Mel gave a talk on being baptized that was excellent. He told of how special he felt as a young boy when he received a team jersey and how it helped him to feel special and part of the team. And he compared that to being baptized and being on Jesus' team. And then how there are team meetings when you are on a team and how important it is not to miss them so that you know the game plan. He asked Hunter what team meetings we had for Jesus' team.  He made a few other comparisons.  It was a great talk. Julie gave a talk about the Holy Ghost that was also great. And Randy gave him such a sweet blessing to confirm. I think Hunter will remember his special day. 
The rest of the day we just relaxed and enjoyed being together. I am grateful for the time we have here. 
Today is church in the afternoon so we are having a kind of lazy morning. I think we are getting lots of rest. So that's good. Although Mel was saying yesterday he's glad for work. He kind of likes having some purpose in his life. I have to agree. I'm looking forward to home, although I will miss Julie and Randy and all the kids!
I hope today is a great day for us all!!!  HAVVVVGW!!!!!  Me

Friday, May 29, 2015

Friday Night Live

We spent today with this bunch of cuties. 
First we went to a Mexican restaurant on the lake by their house..Mama Rojas'. Then we went to the Science museum. The kids had a great time!  Then Julie, Randy, Mel and I went out to Brick Town for dinner. It is a picturesque part of the downtown area of Oklahoma City. 
We sat by the canal and tried "alligator bites". Pretty tasty!
Then we strolled along the canal. I'm having so much fun!  I think I might like it here...except for tornadoes!
Yeah, that's a real draw back. Sigh!  And all the flooding down in Texas makes me glad for Idaho. 
So hopefully life is being good to you wherever you are in cyberspace!  Take care and smile!  Melody

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Good morning!

Good morning!  I thought I would post a few of these pictures from our day at the botanical gardens. The flowers were so tropical and such intense colors!  The blue ones are glass though. I guess truly blue flowers are hard to find. 

I also caught this beautiful daughter when she didn't know it. She's pretty amazing!  She is so busy with her seven children, and she just accepted a call to the stake YW presidency. I'm sure she will do well.  But I guess as her mom I hope she takes some time for herself!
This is Jacob...he's 14, I think, and delightful. He's a good artist, and very smart!
And this was a family of geese. I just want to paint them!

Off to make a new day!  I hope you have a great day out in cyberspace!  Me 

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Wednesday in OK

We visited the zoo today. Lots of fun. Exhausted!  I'll write more later. No tornadoes here, just lightning. Baseball size hail west of here. It's fun to watch the news!  Glad I don't live here. Me

Tuesday, May 26, 2015


We are still alive and well here in Oklahoma City. It is fun to be here and get reacquainted with seven of our grandchildren. They have changed a bit since they lived with us a year and a half ago. I think it should be a law that grandchildren cannot live so far away from grandparents. I am glad for this catch up time. The humidity here is pretty high. And so today we just stayed at Julie's house and let the kids play. It was a nice lazy day.  Tomorrow we will venture out if the thunderstorms will let us. 
A tornado warning was just issued for a town a ways from here. Kind of weird. I don't think I've ever seen that across the top of the TV screen before. We are pretty far away from the county they were warning. But it is still a little scary to think there are tornado possibilities in this state.
Well, I guess I will get some sleep. Take care out there in cyberspace!!! Sweet dreams!  Me

Monday, May 25, 2015

Wet and Wild

It is certainly wet here!  I guess it was quite dry here in Oklahoma but people have been praying for rain and their prayers have certainly been answered. Flying into the city yesterday, it looked like a lot of mud puddles everywhere. But down on the ground it is just soggy!  All the lakes and rivers are full and overflowing. It cleared up a little last night here where we are in the north part of the city. But the news was full of flash flood warnings. 
It's so fun to be here with Julie and Randy and their large and fun family!  I guess we will be visiting the botanical gardens today. It is mostly inside I guess and a great way to spend a rainy day. 
I am looking forward to it!
And that is today's news from soggy Oklahoma!!  Have a great day!!!  Melody

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Just a short greeting

Hola!  We are getting ready to leave to go to rainy Oklahoma.  I guess it has been raining cats and dogs for a while now.  It is not expected to clear up anytime soon.  If I didn't have a daughter and her family waiting to see us there, I would be changing plans about now.  But I think we will have fun despite the rain on our parade.  Hunter is being baptized next week, so we don't want to miss that.  It's kind of funny to be going somewhere so wet to watch someone get immersed in water.  I am not missing the irony!
And the rest of things....everything seems pretty good.  The business is doing well, Mel and I have fairly good health, and we are happy together.  I think that is a lot.  And I am looking forward to having time together.  I have never been to Oklahoma.  But I have certainly loved the musical.  And the song keeps running through my head about waving wheat can sure smell sweet.
Well, that is all I have time for right now.  I've got to finish packing.  Take care and enjoy these precious times.  Life is speeding on by!!!  HAVVVVVVVVVVVVGreatWan!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Melody

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

May 20th

Hi!  I just got back from the knee doctor. I got a couple cortisone shots. So my knees feel pretty good. The lidocaine hasn't worn off yet. My doctor said "ice and rest". So that's what I am doing...laying down with ice on my knees. 
I am feeling good. The man I hired to take care of the yard came this morning. He did a great job. I am so pleased. I am trying to keep this a positive day. It is the day Tommy died in 1983...32 years ago. It's not as hard as it used to be. And it is a time to reflect and be grateful for all we have been blessed with. 
Anyway...I hope it's a good day for you out there in cyberspace!  HAVVVVVGW!!!!!  Melody

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Biding My Time

Here I sit at the Honda dealer, getting the car serviced. It's just an oil change and tire rotation, so no big deal. But Judge Judy is on here so I am distracting myself!
I had a good start to my day when I found a nice check in the post office box for our company. Even though most of it goes for employees and plastic, it still is fun to get money in the mail!  It is a good feeling. So after depositing it in the bank...I met my sister Joy for lunch. We had a good visit. We haven't seen much of each other for a while. She is going to school here at BSU and she's as busy as I was!  She has only one semester left before she graduates, so it is getting close. I am so glad for her. It's a great accomplishment.  Her degree is in psychology. 
So after the car is done I will be done for now. We do have a missionary 'Come and See' that Mel is speaking at tonight   He'll be glad when that's over. He is a little nervous about it. 
Well Ellen just came on TV. I kind of like her show. I hope all is good. Take care!  Melody

Monday, May 18, 2015

Low Down Day

Hola!  I am having what I would term a low energy day.  Not a bad day, it just feels like my get up and go, got up and went...and left me far behind.  I have been able to do a few good things despite this.  I went into work and did payroll.  I had lunch with Mel.  But then I came back home and have just been doing laundry and watching TV.  I had recorded a few episodes of "Foyle's War" which is a PBS show, and one I enjoy.  I think Michael Kitchen is a fantastic actor.  And I always enjoy a good mystery.
Mel is giving blood right the church.  It is one of his assignments to organize blood drives for the stake.  I am not able to participate.  The last time I tried to help out, they told me not to bother again.  I guess I have hard veins to access.  At any rate, I am not anxious to be poked.  So Mel goes for us both.  He has nice, easily accessible veins.  Why does this make me think of Vincent Price?  I don't know, but here is a good laugh to go with it.  Bird Laugh
So the sign downtown...."An apple a day keeps anyone away, if you throw it hard enough!"   That made me chuckle just a little.  I love that sign.
And that is all I have today.   I hope all is happy and bright in cyberspace!  Take care and HAVVVVVVVVVVVVGW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Melody

Sunday, May 17, 2015

The Sabbath Is A Delight!!!

Hey there! I thought I should write a little about my experiences today.  It is Sunday, and the choir had the assignment to sing for Sacrament meeting.  We have had a couple of extra practices this last week.  The song is "Savior, Redeemer of My Soul"....a new tune to an old hymn written by Rob Gardner. It is really beautiful.  They used it in the movie, "Seventeen Miracles."  Here's a link to the music....Savior, Redeemer  Anyway, there is a violin part that really makes it gorgeous, but it is a hard part.  I asked a friend in the ward if she thought she could play the violin part...she is a pretty good violinist.  She told me she would try.  She didn't tell me until Wednesday that she also was supposed to talk in church!  So it was kind of amazing that she would do both!!!  Anyway, it has made me nervous.  I had to transpose the music to make it fit with the choir music.  And it was handwritten, so it was hard for her to figure out what I had written to begin with.  Then we had the problem of fitting it to the piano music.  And of course the perpetual problem of getting enough people to come and practice.  We had a pretty good practice this morning a couple of hours before church.  But I was still very worried it would all work. we were driving to church, I saw a pelican flying over the lake.  And then several more joined him. It was so beautiful!!!   And Mel said, "Now you don't have to worry.  You know that the Lord is mindful of you."  And it's true.  Whenever life has been very hard, I have been blessed with pelicans.  At least since we have moved out here by the lake.  It was very comforting.  And sacrament meeting was wonderful!  Brenda gave a most beautiful and touching talk about families and the Family Proclamation. (You can read it if you push the link.) And then she played perfectly for our choir number....along with our pianist, Jodell, who always does amazing, and everyone sang perfectly, too.  Our soloist, Ann, also did great!  She has had to practice with her three small children, and I know it has made her nervous too.  So all in all we did super.  The spirit was very strong.  And the words of the song are so beautiful....written by Orson F. Whitney.  You can find them in the hymn book, but here they are if you want to read them.

1. Savior, Redeemer of my soul,
Whose mighty hand hath made me whole,
Whose wondrous pow'r hath raised me up
And filled with sweet my bitter cup!
What tongue my gratitude can tell,
O gracious God of Israel.

2. Never can I repay thee, Lord,
But I can love thee. Thy pure word,
Hath it not been my one delight,
My joy by day, my dream by night?
Then let my lips proclaim it still,
And all my life reflect thy will.

3. O'errule mine acts to serve thine ends.
Change frowning foes to smiling friends.
Chasten my soul till I shall be
In perfect harmony with thee.
Make me more worthy of thy love,
And fit me for the life above.

So it has been a very spiritual Sunday for me.  I forgot to mention that Mel spoke in another ward early this morning for the high counsel.  It was really a good talk.  He does an amazing job.  He worries so much, but it always is good.  He spoke about the importance of keeping the Sabbath Day holy, and included a lot of what Elder Nelson talked about in the last conference.  Another link:)  Delight  I hope it is a good day for you too.  Take care out there in cyberspace!!!  I am definitely still pulling for you!!!!!  HAVVVVVVVVGW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Melody

Thursday, May 14, 2015

And the Land we belong to is grand!!!!!

Guten Tag!  This morning I spent at the dentist.  I like my dentist.  I just started going to him last month.  Today was my second visit.  I have one more visit to get whiter teeth and then I think I am done for six months.  He is a member of the LDS church too, and used to be a high councilman, but was released to be in a bishopric.  Mel replaced him on the high council.  They also play basketball with a bunch of other guys early mornings.  So it is kind of fun to get to know him.  It is funny because he talks about how old he is.  He might be 50.  So I think I make him feel very young.  I know Mel does.  I think Mel is one of the "old men" that still plays basketball.  We had a guy in our ward that played till he was almost 80 though,  so I think they will let Mel play for a few more years.  I hope so because he loves it.   Although he complains now about being sore.  He doesn't recover quite as quickly as he used to, but at least he is doing something.  So far I am not doing so well on the exercise score.  It is bad when you can't do what you are used to doing.  I used to walk, and before that I used to run... and do jazzercise, ....and aerobics at the church with a group of ladies.  I even did weight lifting for a couple of years.  Of course not all at once.  But I have always tried to stay active.  I do like swimming, but it is such a chore!  I think I am going to have to get a better attitude about this.  I really think we need a pool in the back yard, and I often remind  Mel of how I feel:)  But I am not sure it would be that great.  My sister has a pool and says the upkeep is hard.  I think I would like to try it though.  Then I could just throw on a suit and jump in.  Now I have to drive 10 miles, change in a cold changing room, walk out in front of other people (that's the worst part!), swim for a short while, shower and change again, and then drive back home and redo my hair, and take a long nap!  It makes me tired just writing about it.  Sigh!
I just got up from a long nap....a whole hour!  It felt good.  I think I needed to catch up a little from our trip.   We are going on another trip to see Julie in another week.  She is in Oklahoma City.  It will be fun to see her and her sweet husband and their seven children.  We get to be there for a week and a half.  I have never been to Oklahoma....where the wind comes right behind the rain!  It should be an adventure.  I think we will have fun.
So a progress report on the house Buddy.  Yesterday I stopped at the local pet store and got some bitter lime spray to spray on the house corners....and came home and proceeded to spray the areas he has been chewing on.  As I was spraying he came over and started licking it!  He seemed to love the taste!!!  Sigh and double sigh!!!  So luckily the lady at the store suggested a Kong toy.  It is hollow in the middle and you can put treats inside.  She suggested I fill it with peanut butter and freeze it.  She said he would chew on it for several hours, and it might save the house.  Of course I had to buy one for Max too.  I filled them both with peanut butter and milk bones....and gave them to the dogs.  Within a half an hour Buddy had them both and cleaned them like you wouldn't believe!  Sparkling!!!  I skipped the freezing them part, because I wanted to distract him from the house.  But I guess I should try might slow him down a little.  I will try freezing them tonight.  He does love the peanut butter/milk bone combo. Funny puppy!  He is such a lovable puppy, it is hard to be mad at him.  But I sure don't like how he is chewing the house!!!
Well, I hope all is merry and bright in your neck of cyberspace!  I am definitely pulling for you!!!!  Have a wonderful rest of today.  I can't believe it is already time to cook dinner.  How the time flies!!!!!!!!  Take care!!!!!!  Melody

Wednesday, May 13, 2015


Hola!  It's a good day today...but a nervous one.  Book club was this morning, and it was my turn for leading the discussion.  We read The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver, one of my favorite authors.  It was such a good historical novel about the relations of the US and Mexico, post WWI, the depression, WWII, communism, Trotsky and two artists...Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera...and a fictional character named Harrison.  It is so well written, and the story is so fun and complicated.  But of course I was nervous to be the one leading the group.  All went well though, and now I am back home in my comfort zone.  I love being home today.
The other nervous thing is choir practice this evening.  I am hoping people show up.  We didn't practice Sunday because of Mother's Day, and also being out of town.  So this is our last practice before we sing for Sacrament meeting on Sunday....I hope.  If no one shows up we will have to have another practice.  But it would be nice to be all done with that.  I guess the hardest part of this calling as a ward choir director is the feeling that no one else really cares.  Sigh!!!  But I will have faith and go forward....doing my best to do my best.
I have been rather tired and sore the last couple of days.  I don't know if the trip is to blame, but I suspect so.  And then I had to dive right back into work....doing books and trying to pay all of the bills for our company.  I did get it done, but it really makes me exhausted.
So today feels less busy, even though I am a little stressed.  I may get a nap if I am lucky.  I think that would help a lot.
Anyway, I hope all is happy and well in cyberspace.  Take care and HAVVVVVVVVGW!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, May 8, 2015


Hola!  We are in Vernal, Utah...dinosaur land!  We came to be with Mel's brother who was sealed to his sweet wife this morning in the temple here. It was quite touching. A lot of Mel's family is here, and tomorrow we are having a luncheon with everyone who came..and then some!
We took a little break after lunch just the two of us. We went to see the fossils this afternoon at the Dinosaur National Monument. They amaze me. There are so many!!!  I took a few photos. But this one turned out best!
After seeing the fossils we drove over to Split Mountain. Such an amazing area!  It does look like some catastrophic event caused the mountain to split. The Green River runs right by. I guess a lot of rafting starts here. 
After exploring we found a great pizza place back in Vernal. We met the owners who are about our age. And we enjoyed talking with them.  
Now we are chillin' in our motel room. It's nice to relax!  I like traveling. But I get tireder than I used to get. 
So I am hoping all is well in cyberspace!  Have a good evening!  Melody

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

My moment in the sun!

Hola!  I hope you are having a great day!  I thought I would share my moment in the sun at Women's Conference today.  I know it is a little silly.  I guess since I was a small girl I have held other artists in high esteem.  I never really thought I could become one, although it was the secret wish of my heart.  But my uncle was such a good artist, and my feeling was I could never be that good.  I thought it only had to do with talent.  I figured I didn't have enough.  I guess I didn't realize that it was like any other talent....that it might improve with practice and knowledge of methods.  Happily, thanks to encouragement from family and friends, I finally got the courage to go back to school and try to develop my talents.  I know it was a little late going back to school at 60, but it was a real adventure, and I learned so much!!!  And tuition for seniors is cheap!!!  At least in Idaho.  But even with a degree in art in my pocket, I still feel like such a beginner!  And I guess I am always looking for some validation that I am good enough.
So it is especially fun for me to go to the bookstore during Women's Conference.  There are probably 20 artists set up there during the conference with big displays of their art and lots for sale.  I finally made it there on Friday evening.  I was worried that they would have all left.  But they hadn't.  And to my delight there were several there that I really admire.  Howard Lyons does beautiful work.  And many others I can't think of names just now.  But the one I was hoping to see was Liz Lemon Swindle.  Her work speaks to me.  And I have loved it since I first saw it at the Joseph Smith Memorial Building back in the 90's.  She did a beautiful series on the life of Joseph Smith.  Anyway, I went over to her table where she was signing free prints.  She wasn't too busy, so I decided to talk to her and ask some questions.  I told her I loved her work, and that I had read how she loved to paint skin in her paintings.  I told her I wish I loved it too.  And did she do any workshops??  She said that no she didn't do workshops.  She did give art lessons to children.  I think it was about then I pulled out my iPhone and showed her my painting for the Church contest.  And told her I had not made the first cut.   She laughed and said she never did well in those contests.  I also said how I hate when people pull out pictures of their work to show me, and I probably shouldn't.  And my hands were shaking so bad as I handed her my phone.  But she looked at it and in a surprised voice said, "Oh, you're good!"  It made my day.....and year!  Anyway, she said I must have an emphasis in illustration.  I said yes.  And she said she did classical style painting.  And then she talked about how she always painted green under skin.  She held out her arm to show me that it has green undertones.  She was so fun!  I really enjoyed talking with her.  And I appreciated her taking a little time to talk to me.  She said she was making some method videos that will be coming out on her website.  I am excited for that!  I know how hard it must be to sit at a table and talk to hundreds of people you don't know.  I was amazed at her graciousness.
So that was my highlight for Women's Conference.  I think it will help hold down those discouraging voices inside my head.  And perhaps inspire me to keep on painting.  If I could just get some time!  It seems like I always have so many other things calling at me!!!  I think I have a whole week in May, a couple more in July and then August looks good for painting.  I keep reminding myself that this is for my enjoyment...not for guilty feelings of not getting enough done.  It helps a little.
Well, I have talked your ear off.  I hope all is well in cyberspace!  Take care!  Remember I am pulling for you!!!!  And HAVVVVVVVVVVGW!!!!!!!!!!!!  Melody

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

I know him like a book!

Good day!  I wanted to share an amazing photo....of Buddy chewing our house!
Well, he is not actually in the photo, but I don't think Max has ever done this, and it is too high for the mice and voles.  So he is the guilty party!  And it's on every corner of the house in the back yard!  Naughty dog!!!  But if I don't catch him in the act, I am not sure how to correct the behavior.  I am going to spray the areas with a discouraging spray like Off!  But I am not sure it will work.  Mel says the replacement boards aren't that expensive.  But it is just one more thing.  On the bright side, he will probably outgrow this!  At least I hope so.
So I am going to share another experience from Women's Conference.  We wanted very much to get into the class taught by Janice Kapp Perry.  Unfortunately it was full and in overflow an hour before she was to talk.  Fortunately, the overflow room was not working was hot and the sound didn't work.  So everyone left!  And the gal that was at the door said that it was supposed to get fixed, so if we wanted to go in and wait, she would let us advantage to being on a scooter.  Everyone assumes you can't walk at all!  And it is embarrassing enough to be on one, so I don't usually explain that I can still walk...just not far, and please no stairs!  Anyway, she took us into the overflow room.  And it was wonderful!  It was actually kind of loud sound, the picture on the screen was great, it was a nice temperature....and no one else ever came in!  Except for the lady who had brought us in saying that people would probably show up at any moment.  But they didn't so we had the whole room to ourselves.  Kind of nice for our little sisters/daughters reunion.  Anyway, Janice K. Perry was wonderful!  Entertaining and inspiring.  She had us all sing a medley of her most popular songs....I hadn't realized some of them were hers.  She told us about how she had decided when she was 40 she should use her talent.  So she wrote down two goals.  The first was to write a Primary song.  The second was to have a song in the Primary Songbook.  She had read that goals were more powerful if you wrote them down.  And wow!  I guess it worked.  She also had a recording of her family singing a family song she had written for all of them to sing.  It was wonderful!  She said because of an illness her husband only had a three note range...but she wrote three notes just for him...singing "I love you!"  It made me cry!  After he sang his notes he was sort of dancing, and she looked at him and then said, "I know him like a book...I just don't know what page he's on!"  We all laughed at that.  Such a sweet spirit in that meeting.  She encouraged us all to write a family song.  Of course we will try.  But we already have a family song written for our family for family home evening by our home teachers.  And it is really something how even many of my grandchildren know the song.
Anyway, that is today's story.  I've got to get to work.  Take care and HAVVVVVVVVGW!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, May 4, 2015

Monday Morning

Good morning!  It has been a lovely week.  I went to Women's Conference with my five beautiful daughters and two of my granddaughters.  We had such fun!  Some of the highlights were:

  • Staying up waaayyy too late talking and giggling.
  • Listening to amazing speakers.
  • Having a theater overflow room all to ourselves to watch and listen to Janice Kapp Perry.
  • Speaking with Liz Lemon Swindle about her art....and mine!  She liked my painting!  ( I can't believe I was so brazen as to show her my painting!)
  • Feeling inspired and motivated to do more and be better.

I really don't have time this morning to write about all of it.  But maybe as I have time I will write a little more about each speaker we were able to hear.  I did want to share just a little this morning, but then I have to get to work and do payroll for Mel so I will have to write more later.  Here is a link that will give you some idea of the wonderful conference talks.  BYU  Elder Ballard spoke as the concluding speaker.  To illustrate the point of how important women were in the lives of men, he told the story of Max and his wife.  They had a high school reunion with her old boyfriend from high school.  Max wasn't particularly thrilled, but his wife was anxious to meet him again after so many years.  So they went to the place arranged.  It turned out the boyfriend had become the manager of a small store.  Max was a CEO of a large company.  So after the reunion Max was trying to get his wife to say something nice about himself.  So he said, "Aren't you glad you married me?  If you had married him you would have only been married to a store manager."  She said, "Let's get something straight.  If I had married him, he would be the CEO and you would be the store manager!"  That made everyone laugh!  Of course, the rest of the talk was much more serious.  I will put up a link later.
We are leaving again Wednesday morning to go to Mel's older brother's temple sealing in Vernal, Utah.  His brother has been inactive in the church since he was about 16 years old.  So this is very special.  He became active about a year and a half ago when his wife invited the missionaries in and decided she wanted to be baptized.  She asked who could baptize her and the missionaries said, "Your husband!"  So he got interviewed and did the necessary things to be worthy and he did baptize her.  Such a sweet thing, and so wonderful for their family.
Anyway,  I hope all is well.  I am still pulling for you out there in cyberspace!  Take care and have a very, very, very blessed and happy day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Melody