Monday, March 31, 2008

Death Valley Weekend

It was nice to get outside this weekend and go do something we had been talking about... taking a drive to Death Valley... as usual we made our way there stopping to see whatever struck our fancy. We cut across some dirt roads in the desert... Sara was sure I had no idea where we were... which I didn't and after 20 minutes we stop consulting the map and just drove... eventually we came upon the Ash Meadow Wild Life Preserve. There are about thirty natural springs that spill out into the desert... creating a little oasis... it was really a strange site to see spring outta-in-the-middle-of-nowhere with the closest mountain fifty miles away... we also saw the pup fish and other amazing things... but before it got to late we hit the road again and finally made into the official park at about 2ish... but before we could get to the visitor's center and pay our dues... we stop and drove up 20 mule creek... but before we could drive up the canyon.... we had to explore some mines... and then hike to the top of what looked like an ice cream sandwich... I am sure glad Sara packed all that food because I was really hungry... anyway, we finally finished driving mule creek canyon loop... which for my pickup was like driving on windy a James-Bond road... very exciting... of course, Sara kept reminding me to slow down. We made it to the visitors center before close and picked up a map and a book about Charlie Manson's activities in Death Valley... not exactly thinking about the fact that we eventually be sleeping out the open... well, it is a real page turner... especially if your in the park boundaries... which Sara read out loud as we made our way down to Badwater Basin. Eventually the sun started to set and we drove up past Dante's Peak and past all other kinds of spooky formations until we found our own little place in the desert without a single person insight... beside us and the book... which we quickly put away when we got to the more disturbing chapters... well, besides the sleeping part... the trip was a success. Maybe next time we go we will invite you.

at one of the holes in the desert

another spring with an official boardwalk

this hole is amazing... the water in the bottomless pit has been know to splash whenever their are seismic activities on the other side of the planet.

20 mule creek canyon (that small black rectangle down by the wash is my truck)Sara thinking about how she is going to climb down

Sara as a sundial
Our camping spot before sunset

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Monday, March 10, 2008

Happy Birthday Paige

I can't believe you are 15 already! You are growing up so quickly. You are fun to be around and I miss living close to you. After reading Carly's post I was reminded of the dancing parties we would have in your room to the Grease soundtrack and I would swing you around and around in my arms. What a happy memory. I hope you have a wonderful day and Stanford and I love you very much.

Upon moving, I found this old jewelry box and Paige proceeded to put on every piece of jewelry I had in it. Here is her "sassy" personality coming out.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Being sick...

This past week I caught another cold. I just had one a month ago and then sure enough, another hits me. This one really wiped me out. It started last Thursday night and stayed with me through our trip to Utah, trip to CA, and then got worse when we got home. I was home from work Wed, worked Thursday and Friday with low energy and barely a voice and then took Saturday off work and literally crashed all day. I didn't go anything but lay around and sleep. Stanford worked so I didn't feel guilty about being lazy. Today I've done alot of resting aside from going to church. I started to feel better today but now that evening is here I don't feel so good. I was complaining to Stanford after church about not feeling good and having do so much to take care of myeslf (yes-I was having a bit of a pity party) and he proceeded to remind me of all the things he's been doing to take care of me. So...I want to publicly thank him for being so good to me. Here are some things that I love about him:

He will rub my head, neck or back whenever I ask him to.
He's a great cook and made me dinner tonight.
He went to see a chick flick with me last night and didn't complain about it.
He notices the small things I do - like clean up the kitchen or fold his laundry.
He went to the store at 4am last week to get me cold medicine.
He writes poetry.
Today is his daughter's birthday and he's talked about her all day (as well as sing to her answering machine).
He forgives me for my shortcomings.
He waters our plants.
He stays in bed with me longer just to cuddle even though he's dying to get out of bed.
He likes to do service.
He loves to be around my family.
He is creative.

Thank you Stanford for loving me and taking care of me!

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Grandpa Torgerson

Leonard Charles Torgerson
July 28, 1923 - March 1, 2008

My grandpa was a great man. I lived with him and grandma for 5 years before I got married. It was during this time that I really got to know him. He loved to tease and start an argument. I loved to tease him back and most of the time it was pretty harmless. Grandpa was a hard worker and he was always working in the yard or on his cars or on his taxes in the back room. When he got tired he'd come sit in his chair in the livingroom and tell me he'd only just sat down and that he'd get up in a few minutes. He loved my cookies and anytime I made them I'd bring him out a fresh batch with a glass of milk and he'd tell me these were the best I'd ever made. He also loved to cook and my favorite thing he'd make was his goolash. Oh boy was it good! He loved a good deal too and he'd go trapsing all over town to buy whatever was on sale. On the weekends he'd walk over to garage sales in the neighborhood and he'd always come back with a good find. He loved the neighbors and sitting on the bench on the front porch, that sat just outside my bedroom window, and talk to all the neighbors who were walking by. They loved him too. When I met Stanford and brought him home to them for the first time, he immediately fell in love with him. Stanford would sit and listen to my grandpa tell stories for hours. I too loved my grandpa's stories. He would tell me some whenever he could. I am really going to miss my grandpa. He was a great man and I loved him very much.

Three weeks ago when Stanford and I were visiting him following my grandpa Snowball's funeral, I had a few minutes alone with my grandpa. I picked up my camera and said ok grandpa, time for some pictures. Now, my grandpa wasn't one who liked to have his picture taken, but in this instance, he sat right up in his chair and when I told him to pose and this is what he did. He was being so funny! I love the picture with him smiling. When Stanford and grandma came back in the room they were shocked to see I'd taken these and then my grandpa continued to tell us stories for almost an hour. This last memory I have of him is wonderful and I'm grateful for it.

Funeral - March 3, 2008
Green Hill in Palos Verdes, CA

Grandson's carrying Grandpa

Cousin Jenny

My dad (on the left)

Chad and Blake

Paige, Carly, and Tasha

Sisters: Calry, me, Paige and Tasha

Me, Grandpa Torgerson, and Cousin Nicki

Grandma and Nicki

Me and Brayden

Carly and Chad "crashing" at grandma's

First Anniversary

On Sunday Stanford and I celebrated our 1 year anniversary. We got a great deal (thanks to Tonya and Dale) at a place up in Bear Lake, Utah. It was a two bedroom, 2 bath place with full kitchen, jacuzzi jet tub, and cable! (Those of you who know us know us know we finally have a tv but no cable). We left Friday night after 8pm for the drive to Salt Lake and didn't get to Michelle's house until 2:30am. Thank goodness for Stanford...he was a lifesaver this weekend for all the driving he did. After getting some sleep and some new tires put on our car we headed up to Bear Lake. The drive through Logan canyon was beautiful!! And just as we made it to Bear Lake it started snowing. I loved it. Stanford wanted to take me snowmobiling so we went straight over to the rental place and rented a snowmobile for three hours. I was a little nervous about it because it was snowing pretty good and the guy was telling us how easy it was to get lost or stuck on the trails so I was praying that nothing bad would happen. We got stuck once, thanks to me, and after that I let Stanford do all the driving. Visibility was pretty bad at some spots and at one point we had to stop and say a prayer so that we would be able to find our way home. But it was great fun! Our bodies were so sore afterwards and we would definately do it again.

Saturday night we went out to eat and bought some groceries and veged out infront of the tv. This was also the time I found out about my Grandpa Torgerson passing away. My cell phone had limited reception and on the way to the restaurant I read the text message my mom had sent me. I was shocked and devestated. I mean, I knew he was on hospice and that he didn't have much time left, but I thought he had at least a couple of months. I was so sad but grateful that I had some quiet time with Stanford to talk to him about it and share favorite memories with him.

Saturday night Stanford's mom and sister came to stay with us. At first they weren't going to make the drive because of the snow but later in the evening it stopped and they decided to come. We are so glad they did. Michelle also brought her dog and Jonathon's two dogs (which I was not happy about) but we had a great time with them. We played Ticket to Ride several never winning once!! ... and on Sunday we went for a walk in the snow and to church, and just veged out. Stanford's friend Jared also came up and played with us all day Sunday. When everyone left Stanford and I just continued to relax. The view of the snow covered houses and lake was just beautiful. I felt like I never wanted to leave. It was the perfect way to spend our anniversary!

Haley jumping while Picasso and Tucker look on

The dogs enjoying their time in the snow

Stanford and I standing on top of Bear Lake

My first snow angel ... on top of the lake


Paula (Stanford's mom) calling to the dogs so they wouldn't attack my while I made my snow angel!