Monday, March 31, 2014

Meshed in Angie Terry

My sisters, Gina and Mary, did blogs for each other because they were "Joined in January", so it is only fitting that I write about Jim and I being "Meshed in March!"   Jim wrote such a wonderful tribute to me on my birthday and I hope to come close to the same level that he is so skillful at!

I remember 44 years ago, on this day the 31st of March, 1970 being told by my grandma that a beautiful baby boy was born to our family.  I remember my Dad was so excited to have a son and so proud of the fact that his new bouncing baby boy had a dimple in his chin...just like his father. I remember seeing Jim for the first time and I was in awe of the bundle of love brought home from the hospital. My sister Lora and I had to share our bedroom with Jim.  He did have a mean and loud cry and it was hard to get a good night’s rest during those days we all shared a bedroom. We did move to a different home, soon after Jim was born!  In this new home, Jim had room to grow into this darling little blonde boy with the bluest eyes I have ever seen; however, he still have the loudest cry I've ever heard.  I remember hearing him cry through the whole neighborhood at which point my Mom told him that if he continued to cry like that, he would not be able to keep his friends.  Jim looked at her with those huge beautiful blue eyes, and tear-stained cheeks and said, "OH!"   From that day on, Jim consoled himself and not much crying was heard from the little blonde bomber again!

I like to think back and remember Jim's growing up years!  He was always so willing to do just about anything. Jim was never lazy and full of energy.  One memory I have was when I was 16, which would have made Jim about 10, and he just loved his camera. I just had finished up a date and was saying good night to the guy at the front door...waiting for a KISS!  Just about as our lips were going to touch...Jim  jumped out of the closet near the front door with a camera in hand saying, “ Battle of the Lips!” and then a click and a flash of the camera...and Jim was off again.  I was so mortified...I hoped that was the beginning and end of Jim's camera antics...but realized shortly after that, it was just the beginning of Jim's Candid Camera Period.  I really wanted to kick his bootie when one day...having just got out of the shower, Jim jumped out from under the bathroom cupboard  and with camera in hand, click and flash....and he was off!   Once, I remember singing in my bedroom and at the time my bedroom was in the basement of our home.  I had a window well that I could see outside and Jim, thought it was really funny, to moon me from the window well outside...too bad I didn't have a camera!

As the years went by, Jim grew into a very handsome young man and did well in everything he ever tried! He works so hard, and to this day there are not many of us that could work like he does. Jim succeeded in installing sprinkler systems, he was a wonderful waiter at JB’S, he has worked for UPS and was a great success at that too!   I remember seeing Jim, after working a long, hard day delivering packages for UPS and his hair was soaking wet from sweat!  Jim achieved his goal of becoming a private Pilot, he graduated with a business degree, he is scuba certified, and he is a dental hygienist. Whatever it is he decides to do, he does it 100% and works his guts out til he gets it done!

This past year has been a year of big changes in my, and my family’s, lives.  Last summer, when my daughter decided to move out on her own, I was talking, and crying,  to Jim about all the side affects of empty nesting I was experiencing.  Jim said, “Sounds like your brother needs to come out and visit his sis!”  I was ecstatic...Jim flew out to visit me and once again spent his time listening to my concerns for my daughter. I told him how worried I was about her new apartment... it became very hot in her apartment in the summer and I didn’t want her to have to open her windows at night...leaving her vulnerable to break-ins.  My daughter also desperately needed a new bed. Jim visited me for only a couple of days and in that time my daughter got a nice window air conditioner installed, windows were tightened down and secured, and a comfortable new mattress delivered to her apartment!  My brother Jim showed me love and  understanding in my empty nest syndrome and I remember the day he left us from that particular visit, my daughter, Jim and I were all hugging in a circle!  We broke away and Jim, with tears in his eyes, said "come back here dang it...I am not done hugging you two!"  We three stood there hugging and crying again. Just this past week my wonderful brother flew back to visit me again and this time, brought me a new computer for my birthday...which I am typing away at to create this blog post...and while he was here, once again Jim also helped my daughter with a few things she needed help with. I heard her say, “it is so nice to have you here, Uncle Jim...especially since we don’t have a man around here to help with some things!”  My daughter loves her Uncle Jim and I know he takes time from his very busy schedule to check on her and just let her know how much he loves her.  I just love that about him!

This past November, as most of you know,  our mother passed away unexpectedly and I have to tell you that Jim flew into action to once again help me out!  He called me and said, "I will get your airplane reservations for you, and your girl, to fly home for mom’s funeral." Jim planned it all and made it happen for us to fly home to be with the family!

I have the best brother in the world. I owe him everything!  He has been there for all of the family and Jim's greatest desire is to help, and serve, his family....he is ALL about family!  I am crying thinking of the love I have for this man and the unconditional grace and love he has for all of us. To know my brother Jim, is to love him and all those who have called him friend, I am sure, feel the same as I do about him. I am so honored to call him my Brother!  If this world was blessed with one family member, like Jim, in every home...this world would be a little piece of  Heaven!  I love you Jim...and because of you, have hope and love for this life!   Happy Birthday today and wishing you many more in the future!

Friday, March 28, 2014

Wind Mary Hazlett

As I have been working outside getting things ready at the home for spring, summer, and an addition...I have had the opportunity to move things around.  One of those things was my mother's wind chimes.   She loved those little things.  Hang them from a tree or the house or just about anywhere the wind will catch it and VIOLA... music.  One is kind of miserable sounding, like banging pots and pans together and the other one is quite melodic and lovely.  

One thing my mother and her mother had in common was the love of wind chimes.  I remember sitting in the backyard of my grandmother's home and listening to the tink tink sound they made.  I sit here smiling thinking about the cool breeze running over my face as I would listen to the sounds that resound in my memory bank.  

Funny thing to bring in Curious George to a blog about wind chimes, but I have to admit I have quite an affinity for Curious George both for the fact that it keeps my son's attention and it is quite quippy and fun to watch for myself.  One of my favorite Curious George episodes is the Wind Symphony. So, you are probably putting the ends together and can now see the reason why I would reference a children's show.   Now, I could not figure out how to start the episode at the end for my favorite part.... so if you are in a hurry forward the episode to 9 minutes and 20 seconds... or if you enjoy George like I do and might have some kids to watch then watch the whole thing... Definitely a fun 11 minutes of entertainment!

Come to find out, I love wind chimes too.  (Except on wind stormy nights and the dang chimes are outside my window...thus that is why they got moved to the other side of the house!)  I bought one more wind chime to add to the collection.  Small tubes with a
froggy atop it that when it blows it sounds like raindrops and reminds me a wonderful warm days with two of the most magnificent women in the world... Mom and Grandma.  

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Thursday, March 27, 2014

Texting Gina Waite

As I was recently texting with my teenage became very apparent that I am no longer "in the know" of all things text!  I'm amazed how little effort goes into writing personal letters and emails...but even more befuddled that texting has become it's own minimized art form.  I do realize that the idea behind a text...brief communication when one can't brilliant;  I'm just amazed at the vastness of the acronyms used in today's HIP society!   I'm also laughing that in some cases, the acronym would almost be more difficult for me to remember than just to simply write the darn words out!

Just so I could understand what my son was trying to text me, I went a bought myself a "Texting Dictionary of Acronyms" (   I'll include the link in case you'd like to go buy the dictionary for yourself...but just for the sake of your (and my) up-to-date texting knowledge...the following  is a little Thursday Texting Trivia for yah!  In doing this we can all "CUWTA" (Catch Up With The Acronyms)...I did not make that acronym up, it's truly in the dictionary!  I'm listing some of my favorites...check them out...either you'll be entertained by reading them Or you'll be HIP and start using them:

A?.................................................................................Eh?  (particularly important if you live in Canada)

AAMOF..........................................................As A Matter Of Fact  (AAMOF, this may come in handy)
AFPOE.....................................A Fresh Pair Of Eyes (I'm heading toward FIFTY...I may need this soon)
AFJ........................................................................April Fool's Joke (This will come in handy next month)
BITCH.....................................................................Basically In The Clear Homey (had you goin' didn't I)
BJJDI................................................................Billy Joel Just Drove In (I'm hoping I can use this in a text)
BON...............................................................Believe It Or Not (I was hoping this was short for Bon Jovi)
BWDIK.................................................................But What Do I Know (better question I've never heard)
CRAP.............................Cheap Redundant Assorted Products (the acronym and definition imply the same)
CRC.................................................Can't Remember Crap (see above mentioned heading toward FIFTY)
CT..................................................................................................Can't Talk (Isn't that why we're texting)
DDSOC.............................................Different Day Same Old Crap (Man there's a lot of texts about crap)
DGTG................................Don't Go There Girlfriend (This needs choreographed hand gesture to go with it)
DILLIGAD..............................................................................Do I Look Like I Give A Darn (Well...Do I)
DPUP...............................................Don't Poop Your Pants (Hoping my kids never have to text this to me)
EPAD...................................................................Eat Poop And Die (Another text I hope never to receive)
FGAI.......Forget About It (You can only use this if you promise to read it with a Bronx accent in your mind)
FOC.................................................................................................Full Of Crap (again with the crap talk)
FYSBIGTBABN.................Fasten Your Seat Belts It's Going To Be A Bumpy Night (LOVE Bette Davis)
G1........................................................................................................Good One (Man that's a good one)
HIOOC.............................................Help I'm Out of Caffeine (Could have texted that one so many times)
HBB...................................................Hip Beyond Belief (Now that you know these acronyms you will be)
IAYM.......................................................................I Am Your Master (Can't wait to text this to my kids)
IHA..................................................................I Hate Acronyms (Seriously feelin' this one right about now)
IJPMP............................................................I Just Peed My Pants (Could have texted this while pregnant)
IMHO......................................In My Humble Opinion (If you're giving your opinion, are you really humble)
IWALU.....................I Will Always Love You (Great song and text message going to Heaven for my Mom)
JW...........................................................................Just Wondering (Just Wondering if you're still reading)
KPC......................................................................................Keeping Parents Clueless (Oh no you didn't)
LDTTWA....................Let's Do The Time Warp Again (My thought've time warped before)
LTS...............................................................Laughing To Self (LTS about my last response to LDTTWA)
MCIBTY.......My Computer Is Better Than Yours (If you have a Mac, and text this to me, you are correct)
MTFBWY.....................................May The Force Be With You (Nerds everywhere are using this already)
NBFAB........................................Not Bad For A Beginner (If you're texting're NOT a beginner)
NIMJD..........Not In My Job Description (What I say to my family when they leave dirty socks on the floor)
OO........................................................................Over And Out (One of my dear friend's closing phrases)
OTT............................................................Over The Top (A perfect description of one of my dear friends)
PUK............................................................Pick Up Kids (Tommy, you'll have to be very keen on this one)
POCC..........................................Piece Of Crap Computer (Read above message about not having a Mac)
QL......................................................Quit Laughing (I'm not sure I would ever tell anyone to stop laughing)

And last but not least..............................................................................

RUMCYMHMAD...Are You On Medication Cause You Must Have Missed A Dose (I can't QL about that one!)

So let it be said that those who've taken the time to read this post have been somewhat educated in the CRZ (crazy) world of acronyms.  Let us all use them wisely so as to not be reported to the AAAAA....American Association Against Acronym Abuse...Nope didn't make up that acronym either!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

You Got Potential, Kid! Gina Waite

Stop and think with me for a second....remember the time when you felt you had the potential to do absolutely anything!  The fearless ideal that no matter what would attain the goals you had aspired to achieve!  In thinking this way...I love to reminisce over all the different careers and hobbies I felt like I would be so capable at...tell me you've had a similar experience?  I'm sure you can remember your first thoughts of your unrealized potential!

Perhaps some of you wanted to be Astronauts, Celebrities or World-Renowned Archaeologists!  I know for a time, I truly wanted to be a News Anchor and report the news...that was years after I was ten, at which time I truly wanted to join the Circus to fly with the trapeze artists (certainly glad the Circus thing never panned out!)  That being said, I realize, circumstances and understanding help us to change our minds...but often times, we allow fear to creep in and thwart us from what it is we really want or would like to be!  Fear is fact, in all reality, the "only thing we  have to fear, is fear itself!" (F.D.R.-Inaugural address)

Some of the BEST success stories have come from people who faced the greatest odds, had reason to fear and still succeeded!  Just think of some of the greats...Leonardo DaVinci, Benjamin Franklin, Henry Ford, Steve Jobs...and last but not least...Thomas Edison!  When Thomas Edison was asked about all the failed attempts at creating an incandescent bulb he said, "I haven't failed.  I just found 10,000 ways that won't work!"  Thank you Mr. Edison...I'll be remembering that the next time I burn my dinner and my family complains!

So to all of you who have taken time out of your busy schedules to read this little post today...visualize what it is you've been wanting....then....WHY NOT make the Jump...take the leap...and do what it is you've been wanting to do...I know I'm planning to!  ...And with that vitamin D shot in the bottom...please email us with the details of your success stories ( we'd be happy to share them and applaud you for taking that leap!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Quiet Whisperings….by Jim Terry

What is a “quiet whispering” you ask?  Well if I was to define that for someone I would ask, “Have you ever had a feeling you shouldn’t or should do something” or got what I call the “hee-bee gee-bees?” –A quiet whispering is a powerful urge or “Premonition” that almost overwhelms you to do or not to do something.  Sometimes you get the answer of why you get this "quiet whispering" and other times you may never know why you felt that way. I have an example of both circumstances. 

I was hiking in Yellowstone National Park in my late twenties.  For those of you who know me, I also am not one to jump on the
bandwagon and do the “normal” touristy things…like “hike” just around Old Faithful. Sure I have done all of those things and they are really breathtaking to experience but there are always those undiscovered spots that are much more difficult to reach and take some effort to get to, that provide a much better reward of accomplishment once you finally arrive at your destination. 

On this particular excursion, I was on an overnight backpacking trip several miles into the park to find Albright Waterfalls that are an estimated two hundred and sixty feet high located on the Bechler River.   No boardwalks, no roads and the best of all…NO hundreds of people in your way to take away from the experience. I had planned this trip for weeks and was well on my way towards my destination when I got one of those “quiet whisperings.”  It was getting late in the afternoon and something told me that I should not go on any further that day.  “WHY?” I asked myself.  Was there something ahead of me that could have harmed me? A bear? A wolf pack? A ???  …I still cannot tell you to this day, why I had that feeling but I heeded it’s warning and set up camp and continued on the next day with some caution but absent the feeling I had the day before. 

On another occasion not too long ago, I had another VERY strong “quiet whispering”.  I was home the end of October in Idaho visiting my family and was winterizing my home’s sprinkler system for the cold winter ahead. It was a great time with my family and friends.  My Mom had organized and even sent out invitations for a pumpkin-carving contest she held at her home for a couple of close friends and of course the entire family. 

This four-day weekend seemed to fly by as they all do and right before I left to fly back to California, it was the plan to go to a movie.  So I ended up going to a movie with my Mom, my Dad, my brother Ryan and his girlfriend Natalie.  After the movie was done, I was to drive straight to the airport and catch my flight home. My Mom was known for her love of movies and would take every opportunity to get someone to go with her.  She was like Siskel and Ebert wrapped up into one. 

After the movie ended we all walked outside to say our last goodbyes before I left for the airport.  We of course first talked about all of our opinions of the movie we just saw and what was ahead in the week to come with work, family etc.  I gave my brother and Natalie a big hug good bye and did the same with my Mom and Dad. 

I’ll never forget how overwhelmed I was with the feeling that I needed to hug my parents just ONCE more and tell them again that I loved them…You know how if you look at something so intensely or for long enough that everything else becomes blurred but that object you are focusing on?  This is what happened to me that day as I watched my parents--Dad with his arm around Mom--walk off into the distance.  My heart began to beat faster, I began to perspire and eventually this feeling led me to tears. 

My Mom and Dad never noticed after I had hugged them, that I just stood there and watched them walk off into the distance with tears streaming down my face.  I wanted to cry out, “WAIT!” but for my love for my Mother and making the goodbye harder on her, I did not…See each and every time I would leave, or any of her kids for that matter, my Mom would always have a hard time and cry herself.  She loved her family and her kids. We were her life!  So being her oldest son I told myself that I “needed to be strong” and I would see them again when I came up for Christmas…Little did I know at that time what was ahead for me and my family in just in a few short days.

Well for those of you who don’t know the rest of the story, my Mom passed just 2 ½ short weeks later after I left that day.  It’s never easy to lose someone but I had to ask myself, “Who was this quiet whispering from?”  Does the phrase, “Angels among us” mean anything to you besides a TV show or a song? My Mom once wrote about this very thing with an experience she had while waiting for my Dad to return home from a trip he was on.  What are some of your experiences with a quiet whispering?

As you can imagine the phrase “Angels among us” has evolved to a whole new meaning in my life.   So pay attention…DO NOT let those moments pass you by or be muffled in a world full of mayhem and commotion.  Don’t be afraid to tell someone one last time that you love them for you never know when that last time may be. Isn’t shedding a tear while in their embrace more comforting that not doing that just for the sake of not hurting their feelings?  At least you can cry together and all because you paid attention to those “quiet whisperings.” 

Three words..."LIVE"..."LAUGH"...and the most important..."LOVE"!


Monday, March 24, 2014

In Position... by Ben Hazlett

Have you ever been in the right place at the right time?  Like the cosmic aligning of the stars with Krypton and Planet Hollywood destined you to some magnificent moment.  Maybe you just happened to put your name in a drawing thinking you would never win and you did. No aligning of that sort has ever happen to me.  Or perhaps, you arrived just in time to lend a hand before a catastrophe occurred.

That actually has happened to me quite a few times. I remember one such time in college. I was running from one class to another, when I noticed a man attempting to lift his powerwheel chair into the back of his truck with a winch on a crane arm.  I felt like I should help, but as I was late already, I told myself that he had the winch and it seemed to be going just fine... and besides I was late.  As I continued passed, I had this twinge of guilt and could almost here my mom saying her favorite quip: "what do you think would be the best thing for you to do?"  So I turned and walked back.  I had no sooner gotten back to the truck when the cable snapped and the wheel chair fell right into my waiting hands. The man was barely able to stand and was fairly feeble.  This chair, though not that heavy, would have certainly been too much for him. Although I almost missed the opportunity because of my busy schedule, it felt really good to be in the right position at the right time to save the day... If memory serves, later that day, while daydreaming in my next class, I seriously considered looking into making a mask, cape, and a nifty gadget belt and taking up this hero stuff... but alas I never did.

In fact, other than not being Batman, there are probably a lot of other missed opportunities.  I think sometimes we're in position, but we don't have the skills or the vision to do what is needed.  My favorite example is in this video:

This is funny and all, but with very little retrospection, I can think of quite a few times I stood on the "escalator" and complained that I wasn't moving. These people definitely let their lack of vision impede their progress.  

To wrap up, one of my favorite stories is about two boys who find themselves together in the same position, but they have 2 very different ideas about how to respond.  Yet because they acted the way they did, they took full advantage of their position: (click here to see the video narrated by Gordon B. Hinckley)
“An older boy and his young companion were walking along a road which led through a field. They saw an old coat and a badly worn pair of men’s shoes by the roadside, and in the distance they saw the owner working in the field. The younger boy suggested that they hide the shoes, conceal themselves, and watch the perplexity on the owner’s face when he returned. The older boy … thought that would not be so good. He said the owner must be a very poor man. So, after talking the matter over, at his suggestion, they concluded to try another experiment. Instead of hiding the shoes, they would put a silver dollar in each one and … see what the owner did when he discovered the money. So they did that. Pretty soon the man returned from the field, put on his coat, slipped one foot into a shoe, felt something hard, took it out and found a silver dollar. Wonder and surprise [shone] upon his face. He looked at the dollar again and again, turned around and could see nobody, then proceeded to put on the other shoe; when to his great surprise he found another dollar. His feelings overcame him. … He knelt down and offered aloud a prayer of thanksgiving, in which he spoke of his wife being sick and helpless and his children without bread. … He fervently thanked the Lord for this bounty from unknown hands and evoked the blessing of heaven upon those who gave him this needed help. The boys remained [hidden] until he had gone.” They had been touched by his prayer and felt something warm within their hearts. As they left to walk down the road, one said to the other, “Don’t you have a good feeling?”
It has been my experience that we are in position to help a lot of people every day.  For everyone it is different, because we are all equipped with different skills.  But whether it comes as words of encouragement to a coworker who has been feeling defeated, or by shoveling your neighbor's driveway on a day they may have slipped and injured themselves... or maybe its as simple as being patient and kind while ordering food at McDonnalds after the teenage employee has had a stressful day of people upset that their "fast-food" isn't fast enough. Whatever the case, gadget belt or no, I hope that in the future I can look for and take advantage of opportunities to be IN POSITION!

Friday, March 21, 2014

Lucky Mary Hazlett

This past week was the ever favorite, for kids that is... St. Patrick's Day.  
My son enjoyed every minute of that day.  As you can see here he came 
home from preschool with this St. Patty's hat and beard.
 ( I just love his teacher!)  He spent half the day pinching my bum because 
my green sticker had fallen off and the other half of the day he went around 
singing his new found St. Patty's song.  I enjoy his energy...most days!  

St. Patrick's day is extra special though for those of us that believe in luck.  I have had my fair share of lucky charms, not the cereal, in my life.  As a child, it was my favorite stuffed cat that I named Figaro (after Pinocchio's makers cat). When I was in high school it was a favorite pair of socks for a performance- piano, play, drama...etc.  In college, I loved my scriptures and a ring.  The night before a big test or times I was really stressed out, I would read my scriptures and put them under my pillow hoping for Divine help the next day.  The ring I wore constantly was a gift from my mother.  A ring with a garnet in it for my birthstone.  

I was amazed by the comfort that was brought to me by my lucky charms through my life.  My son and daughter I think are my little lucky charms these days.  My son loves to tell me to, "Get your jog bra on Mom, so we can exercise".  My daughter smothers me with snuggles and kisses everyday. Everyday I am given encouragement, a lift, light, and a purpose because of these two little guys.  

Thank goodness it is Friday!  Here is hoping you have the same luck I do in your life!!  Happy Weekend Everyone!!

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Thursday, March 20, 2014

The Little Gina Waite

Top O' the mornin' to ya!!!  Looking at my calender last week, I quickly realized one of my Mom's favorite holidays was quickly approaching.  When I say it was one my my Mom's favorite holidays...I must admit she definitely added magic and wonder to EVERY holiday...and St. Patrick's Day was NO exception!  But...I must give credit to the initial source of St. Patrick's Day Pageantry...and that credit belongs to my Mother's Mother....Grandma Hattie Oliverson!

Reader Beware...I'm throwing in some of the Best Irish Sayings so make sure to use the hyperlink on each of the phrases to find out what they mean...because we can't go a single day without "Any Craic!"  ...And in your mind you MUST read those sayings with an IRISH accent...come will be fun, now...back to my story!

My Grandmother, a refined and regal beauty, was just as lovely in spirit as she was in physical form!  She had the great gift of making everything magical and was extremely convincing in all her plights...especially about The Little People!  Living in Logan, Utah  with her beautiful family, My Grandmother enjoyed all the help her three daughters provided!   I'm sure she felt like "your son is your son today, but your daughter is your daughter forever!"  Nestled in their beautiful little home located on 3rd South, they had a root cellar and unbeknownst to the girl's, their bedroom was constructed directly on top with only the floor and the cellar door separating the two rooms!

My Grandmother, being the clever, well-rested-type, convinced her daughters that the noises they were hearing at night in the cellar...were actually Leprechauns!  Little people who were ready to come up through the floor to play tricks on children who got out of their beds before morning...Oh My Grandma was BRILLIANT!  It wasn't until years later that the girls found out the cellar actually had a mouse problem...but they never got out of their beds to check!  Remember...they risked Leprechaun Tricks!  Just to engage in "Acting the Maggot"...the three Oliverson girls decided to act as Leprechauns and throw books at each other throughout the night...only to tell the person they threw the book at that a Leprechaun must have done it!  To this day, my Aunt Alania remembers sleeping with the blankets up, over her head just to avoid the Leprechaun attacks!

Then there were the times that the Oliverson's would travel as a family past the Bullycorn Mountain near Preston, Idaho.  It was legend, in the Oliverson family, to talk about the infamous Leprechaun caves that lined the rocky hills on either side of the interstate.  The Little people could, from their vantage point, play tricks on the vehicles passing by.  The re-telling of this legend became tradition and many of the Oliverson descendants still talk about to this today!  Interestingly enough...I have told my children to beware of the Leprechaun infested rocks but still notice that when we near said part of the interstate, I slowly shrink about a foot in my seat and am on heightened Leprechaun watch until the Rocky lined hills disappear in my rear view mirror...Leprechauns beware...if you do anything to my family while we pass you on the interstate, "May the cat eat you, and may the Devil eat the cat!"

As years passed...and my Lovely Grandmother found herself widowed and living near our family...she engaged her grandchildren in wanting to have fun sleepovers at her house in her magical "pink bedroom." In so doing, she continued spinning the tales of the Little People she loved so much!  It was on one such occasion, in March, that I must have been pushing the limits on an agreed bedtime when my beautiful Grandmother came into the magical "Pink Princess Bedroom" and retold the story she had told my Mother long ago only adding that if I lay quiet and listen...I may be able to hear the music of the Leprechaun King...(to this day, Angie still swears that she heard his music playing in the distance!)  Just as my Aunt had years before me, I huddled under the covers of the "pink bed"...falling victim to my  inspired Grandmother's antics and just lay there listening, hoping not to be discovered by the devious little devils and revel in the music of the King!  Thinking of myself hiding under those covers, I want to slap my old self and say, "just look at the State O' You!"  Snap out of's a Leprechaun folklore for Heaven's Sake!

To say St. Patrick's Day, and all the Oliversonism's associated with The Little People, has been certainly an understatement.  And what's more...I've realized the journey of life is sometimes cruel and having a little fun while enjoying the journey...well it's like the Irish say, "Two people shorten the road!"  So THANK YOU, Grandma Hattie, for making my life so fun AND to all who have read this Lively Leprechaun Libretto..."May the road rise up to meet you...May the wind be always at your back...May the sun shine warm upon you face...and NEVER look back...Sláinte!" 

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Putting the "Nut" in Gina Waite

Please say that there are others of my kind that quickly, and almost instinctively, can spot the issue in this M&M...Meme! Okay...for those of you who do not attention to the Robin Egg Blue M&M section...if you still don't see it, I'm not sure we can be friends!  Just looking at this M&M's container reminds me that I need to organize my closet again...what????  You still don't understand, well I guess I'll have to take you with me on a little journey down memory lane!

I remember the first time I recognized I had a special association with colors.  I think I was about eight years old and I had a tremendous desire, while cleaning my closet, to organize all my clothes by color.   When I had completed the task at hand, I realized that the only thing I needed....was validation from the Queen of Clean!  I quickly scoured the house to look for my Mom and whisked her away to my room so she could marvel at my madness!  She immediately commented about the cleanliness of my closet and then further validated how lovely it was that I had organized everything by color and sleeve length.  ....And the sweaters, they were folded as well or better than those done with a "FlipFold"...ahem...if you don't know what a FlipFold is...well, it's time you's great for letting the kids have fun while folding the laundry and your edges are crisp and clean!

Where did I get this love of all things organized and may ask?  As my sister Angie mentioned in her blog post entitled, "Fifty and Other "F" Words" my Mom once wrote a story in which she clearly stated that her worst nightmare would be to pass away and be ETERNALLY encased in a glass coffee table only to look up and see water rings left from beverage cups and fingermarks that could never be cleaned...All I can say is...."Like Mother, like daughter!"  So if you are one of those who may stay up tonight because that darn Green M&M is STILL mixed in with the Robin Blue M&M's...I have one thought that may help you to Obsess about something else:  If "OCD" represents those who are in need of all things organized and in a specific order...wouldn't it have made more sense to put the acronym in alphabetical say..."CDO"????  If you'd like to share any of your "CDO" stories...please email us at'll be AWAKE...Heaven's knows I'm not sleeping after that REVELATION!  

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

"Come with Grandma" Marlene Terry

I watched a lady old and bent,
With the twinkle of youth in her eye,
A little child held onto her hand,
And in passing, I heard her sigh.

“Come with Grandma,” she turned to wait,
A sadness was crossing her face
And memories were hers of long ago,
A young woman…a bride in white lace.

For a while she stood reflecting her mood,
Remembering a sweetheart so dear
The moments of tenderness, that she too had shared,
Her children, her home—now a tear.

A wrinkled hand brushed at her cheek,
And quickly she glanced around
To see if anyone had intruded her thought,
Of days gone by---ah! No sound.

She straightened her shoulders,
And reached in her bag--a mirror to see all was right,
How could this crumbling person be her?
Wasn’t she sixteen just last night?

Where has her life gone--Her soul still young,
In haste the world moving away,
The years turn to minutes as days press on,
Her childhood seems just yesterday.

Babies she held so close in her arms,
A man loved so noble and true,
Then to be left with nothing at all,
But then…”What can anyone do?”

She rises and glances ahead now,
And knowingly looks above,
“It will all be worth it,” she whispers alone.
“I’ve had everything…but most of all love.”

And now I see, age is not the end,
Our life is just a small part,
A step necessary to continue on,
The things closest to our hearts.

Our Bodies fade and leave this world,
And what we’ve had we hold,
A blessing not of worldly good
But eternal wealth unfolds.

We will spend again the time of youth,
With a loved ones gone before,
A spirit new and free from age
Who could want for anything more?

My eye distracted caught again
A glimpse of a woman and child
Wasn’t there now more bounce in her step?
More happiness—regrets so mild.

Her back more straightened,
She leans to kiss the baby, who toddles along,
“Come with Grandma,” she says with a smile,
A pause, and then—they walk on.

Monday, March 17, 2014 Mary Hazlett

Does anyone else think breakfast is the most wonderful meal of the day?  I love breakfast!  It has the best foods too...pancakes, french toast, hash browns, eggs, bacon, orange juice, and hot chocolate.  Growing up, breakfast was our planning time...especially on saturdays.  I remember telling my friends that I would have for a sleepover that saturdays were our hard working days, kind of like an indentured servant, but it was awesome because at the end of the day we got to have a Peanut Buster Parfait from Dairy Queen.  

On saturdays when I awoke to the smell of pancake, bacon and egg breakfasts, I knew it was going to be a getting-it-done day!  Mom would start by saying on the intercom,  "Everyone come and eat is ready".  And then when we were all gathered round the table, "make sure you do your chores extra good and get down on your hands and knees and scrub those floors".   Mom pretty much said this very thing every saturday morning.  All the children knew in the house that this speech was coming.  Like feeding us a really good breakfast was Mom and Dad's way of bribing us to work extra hard for them.  It is true though, it always paid off... we always got our chores done well and we all were pooped by the end of the day!  

Breakfasts are a great memory for me.  Which I have to say, that I have coerced my children into loving that morning meal too.  I have evolved some from my mother's own cooking and have added receipes like pumpkin and chocolate waffles, pumpkin pancakes, german pancakes, and breakfast smoothies.  My son always wants breakfast for his special birthday dinner... and his favorite pumpkin waffles!  So here's the recipe.  Try it and hopefully it will make your day wonderful and productive!! (even if it is Monday)

Pumpkin Waffles:

2.5 cups flour
2.5 tsp baking powder
.5 tsp baking soda
.5 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ginger
2 cups pumpkin puree
2 cups milk
2 tsp vanilla
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 olive oil

*Mix all dry ingredients in a bowl.  In separate bowl mix wet ingredients.  Add together ingredients and mix until smooth. 
**I always end up adding a little more milk to make the batter smoother for pouring into the waffle iron.

*Share your stories with us at

Friday, March 14, 2014

Spring Mary Hazlett

Do you feel it?  I have got it....Spring Fever!  This is when you get the uncontrollable urge to clean, prune, dig, sweep, organize, dejunk, and make things sparkle.  I saw the first bulbs in bloom just two days ago and it seems that Mother Nature is following suit since we are planning to have 70 degrees on Sunday.

Have you ever seen that TLC show called Clean Sweep?  I love this show! (Sadly enough it is no longer on.)

But this is a show that gives me tingles only because I love to organize so very much.  So, it always starts with a horribly overpacked, disorganized, and disgusting home...not as bad as the Hoarders show...I cannot watch that show it makes me ill.  So, the hosts of the show go in to the home and assess the damage and create a plan of action.  Then, they create three areas to organize the house contents: 1. keep 2. garbage 3. sell.

Inevitably there is some kind of dispute that the home owners have with the host about saving something that is obviously trash, but the host always wins and the owners fess up that it was a good idea.  There is a long day of selling their accumulated stuff at a Yard Sale.  Which then the money that was earned at the sale is added to the budget of organizing their home.  

It is amazing all the cubbies, drawers, shelves, and organizing solutions they come up with... and then there is the cleaning and the painting.  By the end of the episode the house is immaculate and wonderfully organized.  Although my bum has not moved the entire episode, I get a huge sense of accomplishment and satisfaction.  

I also have this book called Clutter's Last Stand.  It is written by the cleaning guru Don Aslett.  It really is a kick in the pants kind of a book.  I laughed, sighed, and thought a lot when I read this book.  One of the quotes from the book is, " Junk stifles us and robs us of freedom because it requires so much of our time to tend".   So, I believe this phenomenon called SPRING FEVER is a great thing for us to rejuvenate our homes, minds and spirits.

Please share your stories with us at

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Hide, Seek and Gina Waite

When I came across this meme the other day, I couldn't help but laugh!  First and foremost because Sasquatch is sitting in a yoga-esque position.  Secondly, because the idea of the him intentionally playing hide and seek with anyone is so witty; Lastly...because hide, seek and Sasquatch have all played a role in what seemed to be a very REAL happening in my life!  ..Please tell me you've also been prey to the inner workings of your mind?

My Dad opted to take us camping into the heavily forested woods...altogether as one BIG happy family!  And it was so fun but at some point on every one of those occasions, the realization that the environment and timing would be a PERFECT scenario for Sasquatch to reveal himself, would hit me and I basically would just freak myself out!  These self-induced mind games would usually happen to me in the dark of night, all while hearing the cracking and popping of the fire and strange unknown sounds not-so-far-off in the distance!

It was one of said excursions that while we were sitting around the campfire, telling stories of the Big Guy himself,  I swore I saw Sasquatch ...hiding in the trees, not too far from where we were sitting.  I was afraid if I told someone of his existence, HE would come, grab me from the tent and do whatever Sasquatch's do to their prey!  As you can imagine...when most of my siblings thought it would be fun to go on a Sasquatch hunt...I graciously declined hoping the BIG GUY would spare me if I kept his secret!

As I had NOT told anyone of what I had seen...coupled with the complexities of my mind that magnified EVERY sound I heard that can IMAGINE what my heart did when my Dad, being the good-natured, likes-to scare-the-crap-out-of-you-type, came up behind our tent and started pounding on the roof as loud and as fast as he could!  ....I was so scared at the thought of Sasquatch attacking my tent to get me, I reenacted the projectile vomit scene from "The Exorcist" and ended up saturating my sleeping bag and NOT sleeping the rest of the night!

After that FUN excursion, here's what I know...My Mom loved the stories of  Sasquatch and never ratted him out!  Since my vomit-inspired vacation,  I pled the fifth and let him have his anonymity too!  As for my amazingly fun and spontaneous Dad, I'm certain he realized he should never scare me like that again!  Two things that remain never to be seen after that camping trip: Sasquatch, and the sleeping bag I was in that night!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Cloudy with a Chance of Sun/Wind/Sleet/Rain/ Gina Waite

How would I describe Spring in Idaho...hmmm, it's like all the seasons rolled up into one and spit back out at you in two months!   Often times, Idahoans will start out in the morning wearing winter gear and by the afternoon you're down to shorts (50 degrees is short-wearin' weather round here!)  The opposite is also can start out the morning with the intent to go power rake the lawn and by the early's snowing!   These weather patterns make it ALL the MORE enjoyable to attend spring sporting events!

Soccer and baseball are a favorite of our family but as a parent, I always know that I need to bring Arctic wear, possible sunscreen and please don't forget that umbrella!  My daughter, pictured here, was attending one of her brother's MANY spring soccer events and while it started out around 50 degrees, by halftime we were pulling out the Winter Wear faster than you can say, "Bob's your Uncle!"

As you can see in the picture...the grass is greening up and the sky is blue...the two constants of Spring we witnessed that day!  Spring in Idaho reminds me of the term "organized chaos!"  We need moisture in the spring and it comes in so many varieties: snow, hail, sleet and rain are all versions of moisture I've witnessed in my 41 years of living in Idaho! It's almost as if the heavens are getting rid of what's left in the clouds to make room for what's to come.

So many needful  things occur during the spring AND all those weather patterns are crammed into a couple of months (yep that's all of spring we get in these parts!) Those needful things bring about some amazingly beautiful spring days filled with blossoms on the tree's and the smell of sweet lilac filling the air! I can almost smell it now as I visualize it!  Oh and the color...the color that resurrects under the last little piles of snow...priceless to behold!  Cezanne once said that, "we live in a rainbow of chaos!"  I say, "well put Monsiuer, you must have had the chance to visit Idaho!"

So no matter where you are while reading this little blog...Idaho becomes alive in the spring!  It's when people return out of doors to soak in some of those bursts of Vitamin D from the sun!  Then sit back and relax, knowing that even though we are experiencing "organized chaos"...Mother Nature is preparing the way for the best yet to come...cuz summer in Idaho is the absolute BEST!

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

The Unsung Jim Terry

  noun \ˈhir-(ˌ)ō\
: a person who is determined to do great things and is admired for great or brave acts or fine qualities
: a person who is greatly admired
: the chief character in a story, play, movie, etc.

How many of us have ever had a hero?  I remember being a young boy and having several heroes in my life.  It started with the likes of Han Solo and Luke Skywalker and then evolved, as I aged, to figures in sports like Joe Montana and Steve Young.  Of course most of us know the persons or characters I just mentioned as with most “heroes”, but I want to introduce you to and tell you a story about an “unsung” hero in my life. 

Where do I start with the sketch of this person?  It all began 51 years ago today… She was born as the oldest child to a young Mother and Father just starting their life as a family with hopes and dreams destined for greatness!  

Like most young girls, her interests consisted of dolls and toys, which eventually evolved and changed into liking make-up, fashion and music. The photos in the collage today definitely emphasize the importance of music in her life.  She can be seen in one photo with two guitars--one electric, one not—and in the other photo can be seen with her cool boom box and bright pink comb making sure she was still looking good as she sang.   With a lot of determination, voice lessons and practice, her voice blossomed into something that was so appealing to listen to and would always touch the heart to anyone within the sound of her voice.

As this person grew, it was also evident that she had skills as a caretaker and as an adult figure for her younger siblings.   Her Mother, while running her own errands, would leave her in charge time and time again with strict instructions to “make sure the kids get their chores done.”  …“Yes” there were times that she, my hero, had to take on an adult role and chase the younger kids around with a wooden spoon in order to get their chores done, but in the end the younger kids always knew she loved them by all of her other acts of kindness.  ;0)

There always comes a time in our lives where we finally “grow up”, move out and start living on our own. Kind of a scary time as a young adult for all of us but I saw my hero grasp this opportunity and embraced it as a way to grow, learn and become a better person. 

As a young married woman at the time, and moving three and a half hours south of her hometown, she knew it was time to grow further whether she wanted to or not. See she had to become the “bread winner” due to circumstances in her relationship at the time and “times were tough.”    With little to no money and needing a couch to make their apartment feel more like a home, she turned to the newspaper for help in finding just the right couch.  Finally she found “the one” that she thought would work.  …The only problem…it was over 10 blocks away. 

Their vehicle at the time was a used, sometimes barely running, light blue Opal…hardly the vehicle to transport a couch let alone 2 people.   So what do you do?  Your determination to make your life a better place with a simple piece of furniture makes and allows you to carry a couch, with a little bit of help from a teen brother, over ten city blocks in downtown Salt Lake City, up hill grades and up two flights of stairs on a 96 degree day.

Determination has also pushed this person into being the best Mother I have ever seen.   She has raised an amazing daughter who, like her Mother, is determined. Determination has also made this person the best professional I have seen in her chosen profession…and determination has made this person the best friend, sister, daughter and Mother imaginable to all those who are a part of her life.   A hero’s qualities do not END with determination either…Kindness, charity, sincerity, hope and love also embrace her character.

Ah “YES”…My UNSUNG HERO!  …The one that is GREAT in the eyes of a few but not known to all. How many of us have people like this in our lives that we can “admire” or who are OUR “chief character in a story” or in our life?  To me that would be “ADT”!  Most people may think of  a company that provides home security to help give us piece of mind when I say "ADT", but to me "ADT" stands for Angela Dee Terry…my security…my piece of mind…my friend…my sister and definitely my UNSUNG HERO.  HAPPY BIRTHDAY ANG!  We ALL love you!

Monday, March 10, 2014

Spring Mary Hazlett

"Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise" said Benjamin Franklin.  I wonder if Benjamin Franklin knew how much havoc he would introduce by suggesting the idea of changing your clocks...Did you forget to change your clock this weekend?  This was the weekend, that as a kid, that I would look forward to.  It was lighter later and it seemed that warmer weather was on its way.  Funny how something as small as changing the clock can cause such controversy.  Sure enough I like it to be lighter longer, but losing an hour in my life is not anything I need any help with.  On this weekend as the time change happens, the people of the world join the "I love it" group, "I hate it" group... or Arizona and Hawaii group.

Reasons that we might love or hate day light savings time are...

1. More light in the awake hours = more time for outdoor activities....biking, hiking, gardening, playing in the park, jogging..etc.

2.  Maybe your children get up at 5:30 already...not mine of course... mine get up a little before 5:00.  So, it makes it feel okay that the clock reads 6:30 instead.  (Of course this is only for 2 days until they adjust too.)

3.  Late night sunsets.

4.  Inconsistency throughout the year. Maybe you just got on a good routine and now you have to change you can change it again in 8 months.

5.  The dark morning time... harder to get up.

6.  Insomnia for nearly a week....can't go to sleep, can't wake up....YAAAAAAWNNN!

Whether you are part of the "lovers", "haters", or the Arizona/Hawaii group... this weekend is a rite of passage for spring.  I have seen blossoms starting to appear and a slight tinge of green on the trees.  Step outside for just a moment and breath in the air, you can feel it too....spring is on our doorstep and so is the yard work.

Here is to a Happy Monday and a hope that you caught the shift in time yesterday so you can be on time today....Heavens knows we don't need one more thing to mess up a monday!

Share with us your stories at

Friday, March 7, 2014

Hello... LOL... by Ben Hazlett

In 1876 a young 29 year old said "Mr. Watson, come here, I need you."  What's so special about that?  It was the first time anyone had successfully transmitted a verbal message across wires.   In fact on this day of that year Alexander Graham Bell received his patent for what would become one of the greatest inventions of all time... for everyone except people with teenage daughters.

Can you imagine a world with out telephones now?  They have opened up possibilities to communicate with people anywhere in the world.  I recently completed a software implementation with my hospital that consisted of weekly telephone conference sessions for several months in which the participants were in conference rooms in 4-5 separate hospitals in Idaho, Oregon and Michigan.  Some people even called in to those meetings in the PJs from home!

Picture of an Old Wall Phone
Rotary Phone

Phones have definitely evolved since Mr. Bell's time.  Remember the rotary phones?  One of my patients saw a picture of one and asked me if it was for a video game.  The most significant jump for me as a kid was when we got a cordless phone. It was magical.

Some aspects of the phone industry weren't so great. Caller ID, for instance, was a stupid development. At least I thought so  at around age 12 or so.  You see, my 2 buddies and I thought we were pretty cool.  We got one of the cute girl's phone numbers and then dared each other to call her.  All of us were too scared to actually talk so we took turns calling and listening to her pick up the phone and say "hello." It took several months before I learned about this amazing new technology that could magically identify the person who was doing the calling... when I found that out I was hopeful that the girls we called didn't have it... They did, and of course we always did it at my house and we were the only Hazletts in the phone book (in a few years no one will know what a telephone book is either).

Remember Zack Morris or Magnum PI with the Cell phones the size of telephone books?  I got my
first cell phone in 2003.  It had one of those nifty antennas that you pulled up to call and it came with Tetris.  Course the drawback was that texting "hello" or "LOL" took 4 hours and cost you $300.  Now, believe it or not, I still have a DumbPhone, paying for the data package makes me cry so I haven't given in.  But look at all the things a SmartPhone can do! With the right phone you can call, text, Facebook, Skype, FaceTime, SMS, and more all from your work, school, car (hands free only please!), house, or from the middle of the forest.

With all that communication ability, I hope it means we are getting better at communicating... but that's a topic for a different blog.  We curse when we drop calls or when the picture message doesn't come through.  Instead, we should remember that it wasn't that long ago that we were still using pony's and smoke signals to communicate.

I, for one, just hope that the next time my son leaves me 24 voicemails that all say "Daddy, I love you... come home from work right now!" or when I get to sing my daughter a song from hundreds of miles away on a business trip, I will smile and think of Mr. Bell and the glorious invention of the phone.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Princess Puppet Gina Waite

Just this last weekend I got a notice on my iPhone that it was time for another software update.  I was reluctant to upgrade because Apple definitely did NOT work out all the kinks before issuing the last one.  I decided to go ahead with the updating and everything seems to be working out just fact a little better than before.  That got me thinking....wouldn't it be nice if our brains had an internal software update every-so-often?  Like...say, once a month our brains would be set for an automatic upgrade that would help us think, process information and run at optimal efficiency for the tasks at hand!  Nah....then we may become robots that do whatever the programmer thinks instead thinking for ourselves.  Which reminds me of the time that my Mother took Valium for a post-surgery dental appointment and my sister, Lora, decided she would make all my Mom's decisions for whispering into my Mom's ear while she was half-asleep, doped up and completely agreeable to all the requests my sister made of her!

It was 1995...such a stressful time in my Mother's life.  She was planning a wedding, readying two sons to go out into the world for church missions AND undergoing massive reconstructive dental surgery.  To say my Momma needed some drugs to help lessen the physical, and probably emotional, pain she was experiencing was a HUGE understatement!   As my Mother came home from her dental procedure, she popped her pills with a Pepsi and lounged out on the recliner in front of the T.V.!  In those days, my Mother rarely took ibuprofen so to say the she was a pharmaceutical lightweight would be putting it mildly!

You must understand, my Mother was rarely seen in a seated position during the daylight hours...which drew immediate attention from ALL within the household...for we knew if my Mom wasn't moving at light speed, something was amiss!  That's about when my sister walked into the house....Enter Lora!  To know her is to love her, she's like a lab rat on amphetamines!  The girl has tireless energy and is always ready, and willing,  to help...whatever the plight!  Once in the house, she immediately went to my Mother's side.  First and foremost out of concern for my Mom (this girl was my Mom's BFF) but she was also well aware that if my Mom DID opt to take the medication, she wanted a front row seat for the SHOW that would surely ensue!   .....And....Oh what a show it was!  Lora proceeded to ask my Mom questions similar to these:

Lora: "How are you doing today Mom?"
Mom's answer: "Green!"

Lora: "How many fingers am I holding up?"
Mom's answer: "Marlene!"

This continued for quite sometime until we were all seated round about my Mom and  Lora...known hereafter as Princess Puppet Master!  It was all fun and games until my Mom, almost incoherent, started asking my sister for her advice in answering the questions.  She would say, "What sssshould I say Lor" to which my sister would obligingly whisper HER desired answer into my Mom's ear and my Mom would parrot the answer she heard, right back!  My brother's, being the opportunists they were,  started offering suggestions for questions my sister should ask my Mom.  Then, with a  promise of payment, asked if Lora would coax my Mom into answering in their favor...for example:

Lor:  "Is it okay for the boys to take the car and go to the movies?"
Mom's answer with Princess Puppet Master's help: "Of course you caaaann take the ccccaar!"

Lor:  "Is it a problem if the boys pay for the movie with your credit card?"
Mom's answer with Princess Puppet Master's help: "You's in my waallllet!"

This continued until my Mother, completely inaudible and practically unconscious, could no longer move her which my sister improvised and decided she would act as ventriloquist too!  With her fingers, Princess Puppet Master took my Mother's lips and began to answer the boys questions...all while moving my Mother's lips in time with her own response.  I think even Gepetto would have been appalled!  All I can say is if you are in need of a good laugh, or your source of entertainment has been limited...find a family member going in for dental surgery, grab a video camera and wait for their return...I know I DEFINITELY wish our video camera was rolling!