Sunday, November 27, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving.
We enjoyed Thanksgiving in Colorado with my childhood friend's family, the Eckert Family.
We considered driving to Utah to spend Thanksgiving with the Locey extended family. It's a good thing we didn't go to Utah. On Wednesday evening the battery on Wendy's car died just a mile from home. I replaced it. On Saturday morning the alternator died. I replaced it. Perhaps the two were related. In any event, I'm grateful that I had the skills to fix both items. I'm also grateful that we didn't have to fix them on the side of the road in the middle of nowhere.

On Thursday night we got ready to try out the hot tub, only to learn that it is not working. I spent some time on Friday trying to diagnose it but it didn't get very warm. On Friday afternoon I played games with Brandon and friends from work. Wendy ironed table cloths, boys shirts, her shirts, my shirts, and my pants. The boys had a movie marathon and played. We enjoyed having a few days off.
Wendy made a heroic effort to get the back yard tidied up before the arrival of our first snow last week.
She cleaned out 4 flower beds and cleaned out the climbing vine in the corner of the yard. It took her 3 days to get it the way that she wanted.

She broke the fork while digging up the ground.
The garbage man took our normal garbage and 9 extra bags full.
The boys were very excited for their first snow in Colorado and got dressed to play.
They made snow men, had a snowball fight, and rolled in the snow.

They were even excited to clean off the driveway.
I got caught in the first snow coming back from Colorado Springs. The normal 75 minute drive took over two and a half hours. At one point after being stopped for a few minutes, I found that when I stepped on the gas pedal the wheels spun, but I didn't move. All around me were semi trucks on the side of the road in a similar situation. Fortunately, I was able to slide into the lane next to me, regain traction, and continue on my journey.
Wendy tried acupuncture for the first time. The acupuncturist said her pulse is too low and that she should consume as much coffee, tea, and hot alcohols as possible. She came home with these huge hickeys on her back from what's called cupping. Cupping helps loosen muscles and encourages blood flow. If you watched the Olympics Michael Phelps had some cupping marks on his body.

Last Friday night our friends the Ryans came for a quick visit on their way to Iowa. We enjoyed seeing them. We went to the Rec Center in town and swam. Everyone had a good time. They returned yesterday to their home. Because I was working on the car, Wendy and the boys met them at Union Station.
They ate lunch and had a grand old time seeing each other.
Last Saturday my work hosted an open house. Wendy and the boys were able to see the office where I work and learn a little bit about what I do. It was great. Later that day, Wendy's parents arrived on their way home from Mexico.
(They'd been there for a short trip.) We enjoyed supper with them Saturday evening. They came to church with us on Sunday morning. We took them to the airport after church.

I grew up playing with Mike DeMonbrun from 2nd grade through the end of middle school. His family moved to Colorado before we started high school. Mike now lives about 20 minutes away from us and his parents live about 25 minutes away. On Sunday night we drove to Mike's parent's home to celebrate his father's 70th birthday. We had a great visit. Mike's dad makes delicious prime rib!
Per my suggestion, we set up Christmas on Thursday night.
Wendy was surprised because that isn't generally what I like to do. I am trying to be more jolly in the season. She called me an amazing guy. I'll take it. I'm usually more like the Grinch.
Be Well.
 The boys Lego creation.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Pie Party, Paint, and Politics

We've been in Colorado for 13 weeks. In the last 2 weeks,
  • We celebrated Sweetheart's birthday. Hurricane and Underfoot decorated the cake with our family, a pumpkin, a spaceship, and a droid.
  • We trick or treated in apparently unseasonably warm weather (Last year there was snow. This year there was none with temperatures in the low 50s.)
  • We transferred all our cars with Colorado license plates and titles.
  • An American flag was placed in front of our house. We are so happy to have a place to fly a flag.
  • Sweetheart and I stayed up too late on Tuesday watching the results from the election. We read yesterday that the last time there was a Supermoon, Truman upset the presidential race against Dewey in 1948.
  • We have assembled 2 new bookshelves and unloaded most of the boxes in the loft.
  • Three of the 4 exterior doors were painted red. The paint wouldn't cover and after 5 coats, I returned to the store. They replaced the paint with a new quart. Two coats later and voilĂ , painted doors. The brush strokes show which is bothersome. They might get to be sanded down, primed, and repainted next summer. We are starting to need our exterior doors.
  • The day I started painting the doors we also painted white and blue so it was a red, white, and blue kind of day.
  • The kitchen got painted blue. The Golden Gate Bridge color was Underfoot's favorite color in the house. Alas it is no more.

  • An electrician came to put in 4 new outlets. One is a welding circuit that Sweetheart hopes to use one day.
  • The island in the kitchen got a new outlet as well. This would be the 5th outlet installed. The outlet was put in closest to where the cooking action happens in the kitchen. This convenience has rocked our world.
  • ALL the baseboards are painted!!!
  • ALL the doors on the main floor are painted!!!!
  • Pie Party pressure helps us accomplish a few things like hang pictures on the wall and put up our family tree. Pictures on the wall helps with the feeling of being moved and settled for me. If left to Sweetheart, there would never be pictures put up.
Underfoot went on his FIRST EVER field trip. He had a lot of fun visiting The Plains Conservation Center

The boys participated in the Primary Program. One Sunday a year the children present the songs and teachings they have been learning all year. Each boy shared a statement about prophets and temples. They sang every song. They smiled a lot. We loved listening to what they shared.
The Pie Party was a lot of fun.
We were more ready than we ever have been. I reduced the amount of pies I normally make.
The house was full and lots of conversation. Most of the pie was eaten.
Be Well.
 We took Underfoot to school, and there was a full rainbow. 
If you look carefully you can see a double rainbow. 
It was there for about 10 minutes then gone.

 I went to bed one night to find a sweet note and treat.

Sunday, October 30, 2016

One Month Later

It's been almost a month since we've written. October has brought light to the house. We've repainted some light fixtures and have had them down since we moved here.
One week ago Sweetheart put up two hallway lights and this week he put up the chandelier in the main room. We chose to use old style LED Edison bulbs. Other updates to the house are:
  • The main entrance hallway and accent walls are painted.
  • Half of the doors are painted on the main floor.
  • A mirror was hung upstairs so we can see what we look like.
  • The radon system has been put up.
  • Electrical wires have been strung for a freezer outlet so we don't trip the ground fault circuit interrupt box and lose all the food in the freezer. The electrician will come on Saturday.
  • We have 1 vinyl sign hung. Maybe not such a big deal, but the boys each were happy to see the sign and said that it has made them think of this house as our home.
  • One flower bed is weeded and planted with bulbs. It only took Wendy 4 days to weed it.
  • The floor underneath the washer and dryer is SUPER clean because the laundry soap lost its lid, fell onto the floor, and spilled. It was a giant nearly full Costco bottle of liquid soap. It is the cleanest house part of our house.
  • Razor bladed the stove top to get it clean.
  • Work table completed
  • All three cars and trailer secure in the garage

The boys had fall break and parent teacher conferences. We went to the Denver Natural History and Science Center one day. The rest of the break we played and worked at the house.

We did write letters to friends, make smoothies, and ate watermelon. The boys teachers have mentioned that they are both adapting well to a new environment and new school rules.

  • starting to like his new school
  • loves to rake leaves (and jump in the resulting pile!) since he never has had leaves before
  • wants to prepare all breakfast meals
  • has been creating his Halloween costume for a month. He is Benny from the Lego Movie- Spaceships! Spaceships! Spaceships! Spaceships! Spaceships! Spaceships!
  • is trying to meet the reading challenge assigned to him at school. He has read 4 books in the last 2 weeks. The goal is to read 20 by the end of May 2017.
  • loves to play the piano
  • is using his initiative more and more to help around the house
  • is learning how to cook
  • carved pumpkins with his brother tonight
Family Happenings
  • Fort Collins LDS Temple dedication
  • Sweetheart bought Wendy a bike
  • Took family pictures
  • Pie Party preparations are underway 12 Nov 2016! We'd love to see you there!
  • Keeping the house together in spite of some chaos
  • Starting to exercise again
  • Excited to see plants in the spring
  • Dressed up as Envy for Halloween. Wendy was green. Green with Envy. Get it?
  • Enjoying being able to breath
  • Getting to know people at work
One of the fun things this week is that Sweetheart and I went to the temple. We saw a man that looked like my great-Uncle Jerry.
We asked the man if he knew Uncle Jerry. The man said, "That's my brother." We made a family connection. It was a lot of fun. You never know who you are going to run into.

This is what fall looks like with the moon still up.

Monday, October 3, 2016

Focus on the Joy

Grandpa Locey stayed with us through Tuesday. He helped Sweetheart with projects in the garage like moving the stairs into the house, discussing how to make the garage most efficient, and hanging lights.
We are grateful for the help he gave and the boost that it gave us in moving the cars into the garage. The projects have to get finished before the cars go in, but we are on our way.
For family home evening, Hurricane taught about how family is important and built a Lego home complete with a windmill and a Lego character for all of us including Grandpa. Grandpa left very early on Tuesday morning.

When the Denver Broncos win a game, the Kroger's grocery store gives a 60 cent donut to VIP card holders.
Underfoot learned this one morning on the way to school because we stopped by the grocery store.
The decision was made that the boys would trade off getting the free donut.

We ate on our backyard deck, and Hurricane said to Sweetheart, "Dad, you can breathe. We can eat outside again." This was a marvelous recognition by him that Sweetheart is healthier and able to breathe.

Painting touch up continues in the house. The big new is that we have put enough boxes away to have a clear area in the kitchen and family room area.
Before - August 2016
The furniture placement isn't final and will change a bunch of times before it finds a permanent spot. It shows we are making progress.
Now - October 2016
Now - October 2016
Focus on the Joy. This was one of many uplifting messages from our semi-annual LDS General Conference.
Russell M. Nelson taught about joy. - Talk here.
As a family, we took time to listen and learn from the messages on Saturday and Sunday. We have treats, focused family time, and a chance to be together.
Hurricane wanted to make a cake and took almost every treat to decorate the cake. Underfoot swam laps when we went to the pool between sessions.
He also played, but I thought it was funny that he wanted to swim laps. The time together is priceless.

Be Well!


Sweetheart took at picture with his parents before Grandma Locey left.
 Robert D. Hales taught that when a child asks a question,
it is important to stop everything and teach. 

Dale G. Renlund taught about repentance.
He shared about how he lit a firecracker in the chapel,
felt horrible, and used the example as spring board for his talk.

 Hurricane is ready to go to the pool. 
He swam with the hand paddles for a long time.
 We completed this puzzle.
It was 150 pieces.

We found this seeder on a walk we took.
It reminded me of fall, harvest, and Idaho.