Thursday, October 30, 2008

Goodbye Baggie

Yesterday evening while watching TV with E we got the call. E's Grandmother Marsha "Baggie" had died. She passed away in a rest home while sleeping; we are all hoping it was painless.

Everyone that loved her called her Baggie. When E was a tiny kid, he had a hard time saying "grandma" and for some reason one day he said "Baggie" and it stuck. Baggie loved that E had given her a special name, and everyone seemed to think it was perfect.

Baggie grew up at the farmhouse, she was the youngest of 11 children, and the first to be born in a hospital rather than at the house. She was a wild child who loved causing trouble, sneaking into neighbors' yards and letting her kitty Percival in through the upstairs window at night.

Baggie loved her grandchildren most of all. She was happiest telling stories about her grandchildren. Two of her very favorites was E's "lellow" sock story and when the hen chased David across the yard at the farmhouse. She would laugh and laugh.

Baggie, you will be missed.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Weekend, continued

After the doll show on Saturday the weekend fun didn't end. On Sunday E and I decided to take a mini road trip out to some semi abandoned towns in the west desert. It was a beautiful day for a drive and we visited Ophir, Fairfield and the Pony Express Trail before making our way back home. Did you know that Fairfield Utah had the largest army base in the US pre-Civil War? I didn't either. When the Civil War started the base was demolished and the troops moved back to the east coast to help with the war. Nothing remains of the base.

This one room school house still is in great condition in Fairfield.
School, detail.
On Sunday night we attended Chelsea's annual halloween party, this year's theme, pirates! We arrived at E's family's house at six and enjoyed Chelsea's games, foods, drinks and fun. This year Joe attended, and helped host. It was a great night, and full of lots of laughs. E played with his new camera, and was able to get a lot of low light shots, so all these party photos are his.

Chelsea and Joe were awesome hosts. I wonder what type of parties to expect from these two, I'm sure there will be a lot of great ones to come.
The dinner table was arr-right!
Apparently, I'm a dork at every year's party. (Last year was no exception).

Monday, October 27, 2008

Busy autumn week

It is amazing how buys I've been staying since I've not been working. Never in my life have I had time to just sit back and enjoy. Yes, I'm looking for a new job, but I'm also loving my time off.

E and I have talked about how we want to landscape our backyard, and since returning from Japan we've decided to do an Asian Garden. I've done lots of research on what makes a beautiful Japanese stroll garden, and last week I started the garden officially when I bought three new trees. One is a Japanese Maple, which is essential in Japanese gardens. One is a crab apple which had huge pink blooms in the spring and turns bright orange in the fall. And I got a firebush, which isn't really a tree, but turns a bright stunning red. Our garden is going to look magnificent.

Another thing I've had time for over the last couple of weeks is my dolls, and my doll friends. I am so lucky to have met some awesome people on my doll message boards, some of my closest friends are online friends that share my love for dolls. Last week I got a message from a Utah member that has been admiring my collection and photographs from afar. She was hoping to get some pointers from me (for some reason she thinks I have talent!) and wanted to meet me. I was more than happy to meet, and last Friday I met my new friend Caroline at Thanksgiving Point Gardens. We had a wonderful time chatting and talking all things dolls. And, we took lots of photos of Violet and her girl Mari, who dressed in "violet" to meet Violet. We wandered around the gardens for over two hours and finally said goodbye, hoping to see each other the next day for the doll show.

On Saturday I woke up early to attend the biannual doll show held in Salt Lake. The greatest thing about the doll show this year was we saw lots of our American Girl friends there! Amy, Kathy, Sandy, Melissa, and others were there. And Caroline attended too, which was great fun, because we just continued our long conversation from the day before. Plus, I acquired two new AG outfits and a beautiful custom made dress for Ruthie.

More about Sunday's activities to come

Monday, October 20, 2008

Heber with Mikey

E and a weekend full of activities. On Saturday we went to Lagoon for our yearly Frightmares tradition and went to Logan's house for a murder mystery. On Sunday we made our way up to Heber to have dinner with Joe's mom and E's family.

E and I left for Heber an hour or two early because we wanted to have time to explore and take photos. Of course I brought a doll, and Mikey was thrilled to be chosen for the outing.

Here are a few photos-

"Let's go Mommy! I'm ready to explore!""Oh! Look at the pretty river and the rocks!""I wonder what type of fishes live in the water.." Mikey asks."What is in there?""Look what I found!""Slime!"

Friday, October 17, 2008

Yippee! Large photos!

Thank you Lesley for helping me out! My photos are now big and beautiful!

And to commemorate this new blog template, I present you Wall Arch which crumbled mere months after I took this photo.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

You may notice something different

You may notice something different about my blog, but for awhile it has bugged me how small photos would show up. I'm trying something new, seeing if it helps me display photos larger, so this is a test....

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

I'm done, oh yea I'm done!

Today was the last and final day of cleaning out the pond at the condo. Never ever again will I have to kneel and reach down into the disgusting abyss and scrub the slime and guck off the plastic liner. It feels really really good to be done.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Chilly weekend!

This weekend was great, but quite chilly. The beautiful autumn weather turned cold on Friday, and it ended up snowing a great deal of the weekend here in Salt Lake. E and I were not in Salt Lake, however. Friday night we spent in Deer Valley with E's company for a company party. It was fantastic, I am so happy E found a job that he loves.

Then on Saturday we went to the farmhouse. The weather at the farmhouse was cold and chilly, but mostly dry. We spent a lot of time inside sleeping, playing games, coloring and chatting. Joe came along, and it is great fun getting to know him better. I couldn't be happier for Chelsea. The photo above is Joe, Chelsea, and E giving Joe's dog Cody some snuggles at the farmhouse.

Here are two photos of a Spring City field that had been watered overnight, and thus frozen.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Scanned aspen leaves

Here are some of the scanned leaves that I collected at the cabin. As you can clearly see, they change from green to yellow to red to brown. I love them. (Also, I took the time to upload these REALLY high res, so please please click on the photo to see it large!)

All the colors, arranged in order of how they change.
Looks like a flame, doesn't it?
Some of the leaves I collected.

Letting the cabin sleep for winter

I've posted on my blog a few times about the beautiful alpine property my family owns and the simple cabin that sits on it. Well prepare for more autumn photos, because my Grandma, Brandon and myself went up today close the cabin for the winter. This involves cleaning the outhouse (no running water!), taking the chimney inside (there isn't any heat either), and securing all the outdoor furniture under tarps.

Well every tenth year or so the aspen leaves up there don't only turn gold, they turn red, orange, yellow, brown, lime green and every color in between. There were many times when I picked up a leaf that was in the middle of turning from gold to red that looked like fire. Stunning stunning stunning.

I collected a bunch of leaves and brought them home to place on my scanner, but first, here are a few shots from the day:

Red turns to orange turns to gold all against a clear blue sky. On days like today, I wish I was a poet or songwriter, because I can't quite capture the beauty that I would like to in words.
Fallen leaves and aspens behind.
The forest floor is a kaleidoscope of color.
Our old ladder leaning up against the cabin had caught a little pocket of leaves. So pretty.
In the meadow the river was just barley running, and all the fallen aspen leaves were floating on top, lazily downstream.
It looks like my micro mode works well. Even caught a few small specks of moisture on the leaves in the foreground.
Next post, the leaves I brought home and placed on the scanner!

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Autumn in Utah

Autumn has arrived and it is gorgeous. Absolutely stunning. E and I went on a little walk the other night and captured a few photos, here are my favorites:

The job hunt is going fine, slow but steady. There are plenty of things that are needed around the house, so I am enjoying my time home. I've never spent much time at home because I had a full time job before I graduated from college. I am liking the change. I fill my day with home improvement projects and crafts. One thing with being home more is I am thinking about being a mother more than ever. I hope E agrees that this is not a problem.

Today I'm going to seal our front porch, organize the storage room and continue to look for a job. I'm pretty good about keeping busy.

Sunday, October 05, 2008


Here are the books I've been reading as of late:

Twilight- I mentioned on my blog a couple of times before how much I adore these books. They were great fun to read and really had me hooked. Five Stars.

New Moon
- The second book in the Twilight series was just as good as the first, in my opinion, but that is because I really really like Jacob. Five Stars.

Eclipse - Third book in the series, again, fantastic! I love Jacob and Edward. God, both are so sexy! Five Stars.

Breaking Dawn
- Fourth and final book in the Twilight saga. Fantastic. Loved it. Will read the entire series again! Sorry these are such brief reviews, I can't spoil anything for those of you who have not read it. Five stars.

In addition to my vampire love stories, I have been reading non fiction travel books. I love reading travel books.

Japan - I swear I read this book five times or more before, during and after our trip to Japan. I'm hooked on Eyewitness travel books, and the Japan one didn't disappoint. Five stars.

Alaska- I am always thinking about my next trip, and E and I have been playing around with an Alaska idea. We'd love to explore everything Alaska. The Eyewitness book is awesome, of course. Five stars.

Journeys of a Lifetime: 500 of the World's Greatest Trips
- I picked up this book the last time we were at Barnes and Noble, and it was a total splurge, but I LOVE it! I've looked at it again and again, and E and I decided to make a list in the front of all the things we've done so far, with of course, the goal to many many more. Five stars.

I guess I've liked the books I've been reading lately, they all received five stars.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

A few more photos of Fushimi Inari Shrine

Although Fushimi Inari Shrine wasn't our favorite shrine or temple in Japan, it did make for some fantastic photo ops. I've heard from a few of my blog readers that they wanted to see some more of this facinating shrine. The hundreds of torii gates wind of the mountainside, finally reaching a shrine at the top. The shrine itself is not the reason people visit, instead, it is the gates themselves.

From the front the gates are solid orange, but if you turn around, there are black prayers on each gate. Photos without the black prayers are taken looking up the mountain, photos with the prayers are taken looking down the mountain.

Here are a few more of our favorites, all looking down the mountain. For one looking up (without the black prayers, I posted this photo last week)-

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