Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Fancy Dinner?

Last Saturday I went to dinner with Dad and Kathy to their friends Alan and Nancy. We get there and the table is set with nice plates with chargers, napkins, fancy glasses ect. They ask who wants wine even. I think "oh, this is a nice dinner, napkin in your lap and wait for everyone to sit down kinda dinner." So out comes the salad: asian pears with pomegranate seeds and poppy seed dressing. Then comes dinner: cooked spinach with mashed potatoes on top and then that topped with grilled salmon. We make conversation and I was proud of my self because I could contribute with an NPR story I heard just that morning about Czech christmas tradition of  having carp and Nancy had heard the same thing and it turned out that her mother was czech she even had some of the blue dishes that they talked about. Go me. So we all ate and then Nancy said I thought we could watch a movie and then during intermission we can have dessert. Oh man what is dessert going to be? I said that I had to go,  sorry I was going to miss this fancy thing, and she said, "oh, take it with you then." She pulled out a box of drum sticks and handed me one. I laughed and said, "I see you worked really hard on dessert." She laughed as well and said, "yeah, it was a whole drive to the store"  So I guess you can be fancy and not at the same time.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Snail Mail

Hal's been enjoying sending mail, lately. Except he doesn't address it correctly, and he rarely puts stamps on it. He draws them on, instead. But he loves the idea. It's led to a funny conversation with our mailman, when I don't pull them back out of the mailbox in time. ("Should I .... answer them?" He's so nice.)

Anyway, last Sunday we'd taken two cars to church, and I ended up leaving with the kids about 15 minutes early, so we got home before Gordon by just a bit. Hal was concerned Gordon might wonder where we were, so he got to work right away, without any help from me. :)

Addressed to "Gordon- Church of God". Notice the stamp.

And inside was the note that said "Dad we god home", as in "We went home."

I tried telling him that Gordon was already on his way home, but he didn't want to hear it. 

I love this kid. Hopefully the mailman doesn't hate him. 

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Strong, Not Entirely Stable Leadership

Both of the Gregory kids have shown an interest in leadership positions lately. Lucy went trick-or-treating as Lord Buckethead, and handed out the following flyers:
I am Lord Buckethead. I have run for the office of Prime Minister of the UK in three elections. I am also an intergalactic space lord. My platform:

1. free bicycles for all, to combat obesity and bike theft

2. better pay for elementary school teachers

3. Discipline is key. If any child misbehaves 3 times they are blasted into deep space, with the parents provided a fruit basket of consolation or celebration, depending on the child.
Strong, not entirely stable leadership!

Theo ran for class governor and went to school in a suit and tie to shake hands and garner votes. He also wrote a speech (by himself) that included the line:
"There may come a day when the hearts of fourth graders fail them, but today is not that day!" 

Then he did a rap.

After he gave his speech, the other candidates withdrew (not kidding), and he goes into election day tomorrow uncontested. Apparently the hearts of a couple of fourth graders failed them after all.


Sunday, September 17, 2017

Go to Bed, Syd.

Sydney is a junior.  Syd is a laurel.

Syd has AP and honors classes that are kicking her butt.  She has seminary.   She is teaching herself piano and Korean.  She has 2 art classes.  She has an obsession with Asian boys that, to do it right (and she does), takes quite a bit of time.

Sydney also journals.  This was her journal entry.. late at night, after finishing homework and as she was falling asleep...

She apparently got the date wrong.  and (not pictured) right below the drawing it says

"And stuff." 

go to bed, syd.

Friday, September 8, 2017

Unusual Travel Suggestions You Should Say "No" To

I've been working a lot this week. It gets pretty slow at night, so I spend a lot of time at the computer in the little doctor's room, just hanging out. Every night at about 4am a really old guy named Norman rolls past my office on one of those motorized shopping carts, carrying a rolled up newspaper. He usually waves hello and I wave back. I figure he is probably in charge of delivering the newspapers to the hospital wards and I don't think much about it.

Last night, in addition to my usual polite wave, I said, "I always know the night's almost over when I see you go by." Then I turned back to my book.

About 15 minutes later, he passed by again, which never happens. "I could make your night go faster and give you a kiss," he said, as he rolled past my open door. I looked up, startled, trying to come up with a response that wasn't too friendly but wasn't too grouchy either.

"Well," I said, "that would be...(my brain raced, trying to pick just the right adjective)...memorable."

Memorable? All the adjectives in the world, and I settle on memorable? I mean, I was trying hard not to be insulting, but come on.

Just out of sight, the scooter screeched to a halt. Motor whirring, he backed up and stopped in the doorway. "Really?" he said. "Seriously, come on, lets go," and he made a vague head gesture towards the parking lot.

At this point I'm really flustered. I can't believe this 80 yr old man thinks there's a chance I'm going to hop on the back of the Elder-Scoot and motor on out to the parking lot with him for some snogging. I picture us rolling slowly past the nurses station at 3 miles/hr, their blank stares as they watch us go.

I shook my head to clear it and managed, "Sorry, I have a no kissing at work policy." He had the nerve to look genuinely disappointed. I think he said something else, but at that point I was slooowly closing the office door. I'm going to set an alarm to remind myself to close it tonight as well. Frankly, Norman makes me a little nervous. But I think I can outrun him.

Like Manna

Ever since moving into my new place I've wanted to get some big artwork for the walls. But I couldn't find anything that I loved, or that didn't seem I thought about painting my own but even buying a big canvas and framing it seemed expensive and hard. Months went by. Dad came to visit and asked what projects I still had for the apartment, so I told him about this among other things. Well, we were out in downtown SLC shopping for furniture and keeping our eyes out for big artwork...when suddenly out of the heavens came crashing down a large, framed, canvas painting. It bounced and rolled, stopping only feet away from me completely unharmed. I just looked at Dad, stunned; but he (realizing that we had best not dilly dally when accepting a gift from the gods) swooped over, snatched it up, and started booking it to the car. "Do we need to ask if this is ok??" I squeaked, hoping he'd say no. "Just get in the car!!" he yelled back. Right then a disembodied head popped out of the fourth floor window from the apartment building above. "Did you throw this out? Can we have it?" I asked, waving vaguely toward Dad absconding with the canvas. "Have fun with it!" the being yelled down, neither confirming nor denying from whence the canvas came, just giving us his beatific blessing.

So off we drove, giggling the whole way home. We bought paints, and I painted myself some art. Once I put it on my wall I hope that people will ask me about it so I can evangelize the story of how my wish violently landed at my feet from the magic dumpster of the sky. 

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

The One in Which Rachel Kisses a Moose

OK, Rachel didn't kiss a real moose, but not because we didn't try hard to find one. We went to the Moose Visitors Center in Walden, the "Moose Spotting Capitol" of Colorado. Then we went on two different "Moosey Wildlife Nature Walks." Then we drove and drove to the Moose Viewing Overlook. Finally we did an auto tour through the Arapahoe Wildlife Preserve, but nary a moose did we see. We did have some other fun though:

- we made up Wild West alter egos. Doc Gregory (the town's perpetually drunk MD), Tessie B. Jackson (the scoundrel), Miss Maybelle (the saloon-owning, pistol-packing firecracker), Georgie Moon (the drifter), and the Sheriff (a lawman so mysterious no one knows his name), all met for a game of cards one evening which went well until Tessie got shot for cheating.

-we found a place to car camp and spent a while constructing a bathroom privacy wall out of sticks and leaves.
- Theo, on seeing the moon through the trees: "Now THAT'S a nice waxing gibbous!"

- we played 'operator charades' in which Barbie on a submarine became robot Queen Elizabeth in an ostrich slaughterhouse.

- Theo asked for a pinecone war, but no one wanted in except him, so the rest of us collected ammunition and made Theo run a gauntlet under pinecone fire.

- Carrie wanted elk horns (long story) but was too shy to ask about them, so she paid Theo $20 to approach a pair of hunters unloading their wares at a big game processing place. They didn't have any, and didn't seem inclined to discuss it much either.

- Rachel wished she'd brought a warm hat for camping so she wrapped her church dress around her head and slept like a baby. "Any night that ends with your dress wrapped around your head is probably a pretty good night." -Christopher Gregory

- We thought about getting haircuts at the 'Crosshairz Salon,' with an awesome logo of gunsights, antlers coming out of a rose, and a frog, but didn't.

- Lastly, we ate a lot of cheese.

Friday, August 25, 2017

Scenes From An Eclipse, Rachel

Theo had the right idea by wanting to run to WY to catch the total eclipse - it lives up to the hype. I wasn't that set on going until I figured out that I could finagle my schedule to get Monday off, and then I figured I had no excuse. But I wasn't sure what to expect - all the news reports were about how many people were going to be swarming to these little Idaho towns, how terrible the traffic was going to be, how we should pack extra food and water and gas, etc. Also, the weather report said “partly cloudy,” which made me afraid that we wouldn’t even be able to see it. But the drive up there had zero traffic, the day dawned with not a cloud in the sky, Rigby was small enough that we had no trouble getting around, and the lake we found was perfect and had just the right amount of people. We got my camera set up just in time, though that was a little stressful - the tripod I brought is not the best, it was hard to find the sun and focus it on full zoom, and we had to jerry-rig a solar filter for my lens by dismantling a pair of solar glasses* was just a little embarrassing to be next to all these pros with their high-tech equipment. But hey, we did it! 

The total eclipse itself was SUPER cool. I had seen a partial eclipse before, but I was surprised by how different it was between even 95% eclipsed and the totality. It got suddenly drastically darker, the temperature dropped 15 degrees, and the fish freaked out right beforehand (who knew?). It was otherworldly to look at the sun completely covered - the colors were all off, the corona was mesmerizing, and it felt awe-inspiring to stare wide-eyed at the sun with the naked eye. The 360 degree “sunset” was incredible and eerie, and even though it lasted 2 minutes 17 seconds it felt like it was over in 30 seconds. It was so overwhelming I forgot to even look for the stars, but people around me said you could see a few of them.

Everyone cheered and whooped and hollered, and it felt like a bonding experience - afterward, everyone started chatting excitedly with each other, looking at each other’s photos, trying to describe the experience and how they felt about it. Our neighbors consisted of a family from CA, a father-son duo from AZ, a couple from the Netherlands, a man from Germany, and a couple from the UK. So crazy that people from all over the world all converged on the same small town in Idaho for this unifying event. As a result, the traffic back was admittedly crazy, but was still better than I was afraid of. All in all, it was totally worth it!

*Thanks Krissie!