Sunday morning I attended Welfare Meeting. Between Welfare and Sacrament Meeting, I was standing in the hall and a man, all dressed in white, came running in with a small 4-year old boy in tow.

He came up to me and said, "Is this the place where they have church for children?"

I told him we did have a meeting for children and he replied, "Good, then I will leave him here. What time do you finish so I can come and pick him up?"

I said--in total shock--"We finish at noon."

He replied that he would return at noon and leaned over to the boy and say "Give me a kiss mija." The boy gave him a kiss and he left with me standing there in charge of a strange 4-year old boy I knew nothing about.

I took his hand and told him to stay with me, asked his name (Damon) and introduced him to the Primary President, Sister Faller.

We went to Sacrament meeting together and, being the good grandma that I am, I had candy in my purse to entertain him. Sister McFall asked him if he had any breakfast and he told her he had a muffin. She gave him an energy bar, which he saved for later.

He was very obedient and behaved during the meeting, though he was bored. I kept thinking, "I hope I haven't just adopted a 4 year old boy." His teacher, Sister Mickelson, was sitting behind me and told me she would be sure he got to all the right places.

I asked him who brought him, "Was it your grandpa?"
"No."
"Was it your Dad?"
"No."
"Who was it?"
"Never mind" and he shut his eyes.
"Where do you live?"
"Far away"
"What is your Mother's name?"
"Never mind" and he shut his eyes again.

Oh, my, I think I may have just adopted a 4-year old boy.

During the meeting he noticed he was not wearing any socks and then checked to see if he was wearing underpants--he was, trauma averted.

After Primary started I walked out into the hall and saw the man who brought him pacing back and forth as if he was looking for Damon. I stopped him and introduced myself. He was quite embarrassed that he had not even found out my name when he dropped off the boy and wanted the check and be sure he was okay. His name was Rick and he was Damon's uncle. He gave me a little personal information about Damon's family which I won't put here, but it was an interesting story.

Man, was I relieved.

We walked to the Primary door and looked in through the window and saw Damon up in the front of the room with Sister Faller. They were singing the Hello song to him. Rick was ecstatic and thanked me and said he would be back at noon to pick up Damon and then this..."If he has a good time, I will bring him every week."

I'm thinking..."and who are you going to leave him with?" but I didn't say that.

After the meetings, I went to the classroom for the 4-year old children and found Damon just finishing a picture that said, "I want to hold the Priesthood." He was so excited and couldn't wait to show his uncle the picture. I guess the uncle will find out very quickly what he is learning at the place were they have church for children.

So, Rick picked up Damon--Damon jumped up and down with excitement because he had so much fun--Rick said, "see you next week"--I realized the sign on my forhead that said "sucker" was flashing--all in all it was a great day.

Tamales homemade by Jackie Harrison. I'm in the holiday spirit now.

You remember Papa's Grow Sticks? Of course you do, how could you forget something so important to me? Well, we finally found a lumber source in Springerville, Arizona. They custom cut them for us and every stick is from a forest conservation project so we are not not only made in the USA, we are green.

This is Charlie, he is loading 700 pieces of lumber into the pickup we rented for the trip.

That's a lot of lumber. We are going to be very busy.


See how neatly it is stacked.

Whoa, it looks a little crooked. Watch out Tarzan...

Do you think that pickup can hold a load like this?



Tarzan looks a little worried.


Those straps are ingenious. We thought we were going to have to unbundle it to get it in the truck.




Up-se-daisy


Going doeoeoeown...See Charlie standing up to be sure it goes in the bed of the truck?








And in it goes, we made it...


Tarzan is guiding it along...

Notice the wheel well...

Whoa, that is one heavy load. Not much space left in the wheel well.

Tarzan and Charlie are checking out the weight on the pickup...
We made it home but about 30 minutes into the drive home, we did have to stop and redistribute the weight of the lumber, see in the last picture how it is over to the left a bit? That made things real scary and having had another scary experience with weight shifting, we decided it was worth the effort to break down the bunch and redistribute the weight.


When we arrived home we had to unload that lumber, we were having an unexpected 100° day. I do not sweat. I get a little moist sometimes, but drops of sweat like basketball players have do not form on my body, especially not on my face. Well I got so hot and worked so hard that sweat actually dripped off my eyebrow. I thought I was bleeding. When we finished we were going to run some errands and go out to eat...


NOT



When we finished, we ate leftover roast beef sandwiches, took a hot shower, and fell into bed exhausted.

The ole' gray mare, she ain't what she used to be.

School has started and I am now in full swing with 200 students--yes I said two hundred. That means I have 200 papers to grade every week besides working full time, being Relief Society President and making Grow Sticks every day.

Blogging must wait. See ya now and then.

My friend and I have been laughing at our stupid behavior when visiting with different doctors and the stupid behavior of doctor’s offices and insurance companies and we are wondering if there are others who have stories to tell.

If you have an interesting story, please email it to me…grandberry at gmail dot com.

So, I went to the dermatologist to have a full body skin exam. There are a few things I’m concerned about that could be melanomas. There I am totally naked in the doctor’s office (except that silly little paper thing they give you) and he is doing the exam.

Me: I have had this bump on my arm that won’t go away and it has changed colors. I've had it for four months.
Doctor: That’s normal, probably a bug bite
WHAT I DON’T SAY BUT WANT TO: Are you crazy, a bug bit that lasts four months? That can’t be normal.

Me: I have these bumps on my scalp and my hair dresser tells me they look like moles (I find one and tell him where to look, he doesn’t touch it or part my hair to get a better look or anything. And my hair is clean--very clean and shiny)
Doctor: Yup, they are moles, that’s normal
WHAT I DON’T SAY BUT WANT TO: What do you mean they are normal, I have done the research and Google tells me that moles on the scalp can be precursors to melanoma. You need to look closely and be sure none of them are putting my life in danger.

I point out a few more things and then, he proceeds to check me out front and back, as I stand in the room wearing nothing but a smile and that silly paper thing they give you, and then...

Doctor: You have good skin, nothing unusual.
WHAT I DON’T SAY BUT WANT TO: The bumps and things I pointed out may all be normal, but not very sexy.
Me: Okay, thanks doctor
Doctor: I’ll see you in six months
Me: (total silence)

The doctor doesn’t even notice my silence and rushes off to earn his next $500 for a 10 minute exam.

Then I am sitting in my car—fuming—and I remember the wart on my stomach. I have a wart on my stomach the size of a tic tac, and he didn’t even notice that? I was going to have him freeze that right off, but he got me so frustrated that I didn’t even mention it and now, here I am with a very unsexy wart on my stomach…did I mention it is the size of a tic tac…and I am going to have to do the freeze job myself.

So, to recap, bump on my arm—no diagnosis (doctor visit of no value), moles on my scalp, diagnosed by my hair dresser (doctor visit of no value), wart on my stomach, unnoticed by doctor (doctor visit of no value).

And insurance paid for that…

For your information, the American Medical Association says that if you have moles on your scalp you should have pictures taken of them so you can compare and see if they change color or shape.

So, if you have a doctor story, I need it. I am collecting doctor stories. Not sure what I am going to do with them. In case I decide to publish them please include permission to use the story and if you want your name included with the story or not. Again, send them to grandberry at gmail dot com.

I don’t want the name of the doctor or insurance company, but if you have a doctor story or doctor experience or an insurance story of some kind. I am interested. Positive and negative stories are accepted.

Image from http://healthcare.zdnet.com/?p=1163

"Courage is like a muscle. We strengthen it with use."

Ruth Gordon
____________________________________________________________________________________
You will recognize her best from this picture


She also looked like this


I saw SteveE crossed eyed with one eye. He didn't know he could do that.
I saw myself crosseyed with one eye, I've never seen myself do that, kind of hard to see your self when one of your eyes is looking left and one is not.

I saw Tarzan with one lense missing in his sunglasses and he didn't know it. When I pointed it out, he said "I wondered why everything looked so funny." Then he spend severl minutes wondering how long it had been that way and why no one had told him before me. I assured him it was because I love him most of all.

It seems like such a good idea....

The companies make it so easy for you, right?

Just sign up for auto pay and they will magically take money out of your bank account to pay your bill and you never have to worry about it...

BUT WAIT, THERE'S MORE

Don't be so fast to sign up for auto pay that way. Once you do that, you lose control of the money being taken out of your account.

The company can take your payment out twice, yikes, overdraft.
They can continue taking money out even when you don't owe them money any more, yikes, overdraft.
They can make a typo and take out too much or too little, yikes, over draft and late fees.

The experts say the better way to do this is to set up the auto pay from your bank.

That way you have control over the money. If you want to stop the auto pay, it is a simple matter of you canceling it on your side and not trying to get someone on the receiving end to stop it. I have wanted to stop an auto pay "immediately. Sometimes, the receiver has a 30 day window in which they still have access to your account before they cancel the autopay.

Take my advice on this one, use the banks autopay, not the creditor's autopay.

Thank you very much for listening

My sister, Inez, is so fun.

I have fond memories of playing with her when we were children. I don't recall that we argued a lot. We always shared a room and playing in there alone with her was fun.

Our father was in the Air Force. We traveled all over the world and in our travels we each had a collection of something. She collected dolls. Our father made her a cabinet to put the doll collection in it was painted blue and had glass doors. We were not allowed to play with the dolls...

...that is unless we were alone in our room.

We were oh so careful and soon learned we could not play with the Dresden ballerinas because the glass net on their tutus just crumbled in our hands.

I wish we lived closer.

Isn't she just the cutest thing? This is Inez, Mom, Tarzan, and me at the Springerville, Arizona 4th of July parade 2008.

They said it for me:

Becky

Ree

Amberly (not a 911 salute, but a reminder of why I love America)

Shellie

Lenn

Once you make a choice, it is your responsibility to make it the right decision.

This is a loose quote of something Paton Manning said on NPR. He was specifially speaking of choosing a college to go to, namely once he chose a college, he had to work to make it the right choice.

I have thought about that for awhile now and I believe that it can be extended to many other choices we make in out lives. Think about it, what choices have you made that now you have to work at to make them the right decision?

I saw images taken by the Hubble after it was repaired by the Astronauts, so I can still say to the question, "What's up?" "The Hubble Telescope."

We have long been advocates of the envelope method of budgeting.

As you know, I am saving for my PhD, that is a little more than an envelope worth of money, however, the new kitchen door and security screen we want is going to cost us about $800 installed. Here is what we do...

We get an envelope and put a few dollars in it every week. Both of us contribute out of our personal spending money. When we get the money saved up, we buy our doors and hire our installer.

We never feel the pain of a large purchase such as that. Sometimes it takes us longer than other times, but we can always reach our goal.

Once we hired a surveyor for our property, he was going to charge us $600. He finished before we had the whole $600. I got out my envelope and told him that I would give him the $400 we had saved up and the other $200 on payday.

He laughed and said, "You have been saving up for this and you only have $400 in that envelope? I'll take that and call it even."

I love a bargain.

I remember when I had time to relax and enjoy Memorial Day and a cookout with friends.

With time, we gain weight because we accumulate so much information and wisdom in our heads that when there is no more room, it distributes out to the rest of our bodies. So we aren't heavy, we are enormously cultured, educated and happy. Beginning today, when I look at my butt in the mirror I will think, "My gracious, look how wise I am!"

I don't know who said this, but it's mine now.

I saw my 87 year old mother, walking sprightly up the stairs.
I saw blackbirds on a fence
I saw the sun on the lake
I saw Tarzan wishing he had his fishing pole

I saw poop on a sign. No actually I didn't see the poop until I got the picture on the computer. I saw a cool sign on a country store.

I saw wood for Papa's Grow Sticks.

All in all it was a glorious weekend.

This is a silly tip...it's actually more like Tuesday Trivia, but whatever...

You know those "Ineroffice Envelopes"? Like these? Welllllll, here is some funny trivia for you.

These were invented by the military (of course we believe it was the Air Force that invented them).

In the Air Force they are referred to as "Holey Joes." 'Cuz of those holes.

Did you ever wonder why they have holes in them? Well, I just found out today from Tarzan...

When the military was passing top secret information around the office in these Holey Joes, they needed to be sure there was nothing left in the envelope, thus, the holes.

Isn't that kewl?

Digger always wore black shiny, pull on work boots.

Always.


One year, when my brother and I were both married and living in Utah, Digger began a campaign for new boots. He would say, "Boy I sure would like some rough out boots." And then in a few days, "I have always wanted a pair of rough out boots." And so on, for about 4 or 5 months before his birthday.

Digger was never one to ask for anything, so I'm sure in retrospect he was not hinting for us to buy them for him. Rather, he was talking himself into it.

If you don't know it, rough out boots are brown and they have a rough leather exterior like unfinished leather. Well, not that rough, but anyway, they are not smooth and shiny.

So, my brother and I went together on our struggling college budget and bought him a pair of brown rough out boots, just like his shiny black ones, only brown and rough out.

We all met at his house and had lunch, then he opened his present and put the brand new brown rough out boots on and said, "Boy, these are nice, they would be nicer if they were black and shiny."

My brother, boxed them up, went back to the store and got him a pair of black shiny boots. Have I told you--I loved Digger.

If you have or want me in your private blog, please do this for me so I don't lose track of you.

http://pensivebrenda.blogspot.com/2009/08/attention-all-private-bloggers.html

My email address is grandberry at gmail dot com.

Thanks

I love Oscar...

No, Tarzan is safe, he loves Oscar too...

Tarzan walked outside and turned back to tell me "Oscar's back."

I stepped outside and sure enough, there was Oscar just sitting by the house, like he does every spring and fall.

We always muse, "Why does Oscar come up here every spring and fall?"

I turned to go into the house and noticed something on the bottom of the door. I looked closely and saw a scorpion with a BODY THE SIZE OF A QUARTER.

(Insert ooos and yucks here)

I calmly said, "Tarzan, look at the bottom of the door."

Tarzan moved quickly, and manly when he saw it. He took a broom and swept the scorpion outside and then beat the living daylights out of it.

We then both -- at the same time -- (I love it when that happens) looked at Oscar and then back at the scorpion and said "oooooooooooh." (You have to say that starting low and then making your voice go up and then back down)

Tarzan took the broom and swept the now deceased scorpion over to Oscar and we went into the house.

5 minutes later dead scorpion gone...we love Oscar.

You know there is a rule of thumb on whether or not you can afford to buy the kewl thingy there in Ikea that you just have to have.

It is called cost-per-use. You figure out how many times you will use the item and divide that into the cost if the item to figure your cost for a year--as an example...

I had to have a fancy delux vacuum that all the young girls in the ward were talking about. So, it cost me (because I got the really fancy one) about $500. I vacuum about 150 times a year. If I have the vacuum one year, it costs me $3 each time I use it. If I keep it for 5 years, it costs me 66¢, now that makes it a bargain.

However, here is a good one, you want a new blouse, it costs $50. You may wear it 10 times in a year, less if you have lots of cloths. At $5 a pop, that is an expensive blouse when you could go to a discount store like Ross and get a perfectly good blouse for maybe $10 and have that cost go down to $1 per use.

If the item is not something you "use" rather something you will just enjoy such as a picture on the wall, you can say cost-per-enjoyment. Now, that's my favorite, 'cause I can really enjoy something----a lot.

And finally, the cost per use on boxes or bottles of consumable products is something you should pay attention to. It used to be that bigger was cheaper. A larger box of cereal cost less per ounce than a smaller box of cereal, but not anymore. One example I have seen is a popular brand of shampoo at a cost like this:

15.0 ounce bottle 90¢ cost 06¢ per ounce
22.5 ounce bottle $1.47 cost 06.5¢ per ounce

Watch out for that, most price labels have the cost per unit on them, do some comparison and save yourself some money. That may not seem like a lot of money, but when you realize it is 8.9% more for the larger bottle, you might want to give it some serious thought. How would you feel if the store charged you 8.9% more for everything you bought. Yikes.

I'm a city gal, at least I think of myself as a city gal. I love theater, I love sports, I love the action of downtown, I love the feel of a college campus, but...

I have spent several years in the country, so maybe I'm a country gal. You be the judge...

Tarzan and I had company coming early Saturday morning. Friday night the septic tank backed up. Do city gals have septic tanks?

Anyway, several hours and a few dollars later, it was running again. Thanks you Shad you are the best.

This reminded me of another time and another septic tank in another place where this city gal lived in the country.

The places was Fruitland, New Mexico. We lived on a 2 acre farm with a septic tank. It needed to be replaced, so we hired someone to do it for us. They built it with cinder block and cement. It was all finished...a thing of beauty...the lid was not on yet and we could see that things were flowing into it as they should (sorry if that grosses you out).

The next day they came to put the lid on and cover the tank. With the lid in place, the tractor started covering it up and when the weight of the dirt and tractor ran over it one too many times, you guessed, the top broke and the front of the tractor went down into the hole.

Now, I am laughing at the picture, I hope you are.

Not only did they have to pull the tractor out, they had to clean all the cement and dirt out (along with the other stuff that had flowed into the tank). It seems they had not put enough rebar in the lid for the tank.

The moral is, "Anything worth doing is worth doing right." OR "Don't take shortcut they can be a yucky mess."

"Sometimes, languishing in the arms of your sweetheart for an extra half hour in the morning is the best way to start your day."

Sandi Grandberry

Remember this? Here is the tractor we moved, innocent looking isn't it?
She moves with style and grace...did you ever see such a stylish hat for shoveling you know what?
See how the hat is tipped slightly to give her some style?No, not turning away from the smell, backing up. In case you don't know old manure doesn't smell bad and this is OLD horse poop. Yeah, she's cool, well, not really, it's 115 °
What would Tarzan do without a good partner?

The Park Avenue Princess is giving one of these awesome purses away. I want one so bad it is silly. This is my favorite shell
Miche Bag, Utah based business, unbelieveable idea.

If you are going to be on a committee that receives long, detailed presentations from several different experts in their field, you may need to have some caffeine to survive.

My most embarrassing moment happened when I was 16 years old.

I was taking a speech class from Mr. Udall. He had one day a week when you could give in impromptu speech and complain about anything you wanted as long as you did not slander anyone or badmouth any individuals.

It took me about three months to come up with something to say for that assignment. Finally, a couple of things began to bother me so I stood up and said (with my hands on my hips)...

"I've had two things on my chest for the longest time."

Mr. Udall couldn't get the class back under control and I didn't get why they were laughing. I was really hurt that everyone was making fun of me. When I did finally catch on....

one word

mortified.

What is your most embarrasing moment?

You can't see it in this itty-bitty picture, but I am at 4% of my goal.

Photobucket

It is a life long dream of mine to get my PhD.

I am a person of no particular circumstance. I do not qualify for any scholarships or grants. There is no way I will be able to pay for this education out of my meager State salary.

I am going to start my PhD journey next year. My degree will be a PhD in Higher Educaton Administration.

There are 6 months left to earn the money for my first year.

If everyone who knows me donates $1.00 and everyone who knows them donates $1.00, I can do this.

I would love to have a donation from you.






I saw a purse I want so bad my teeth ache. I love purses. Check it out. You can buy one purse and then change its "cloths" so you have lots of purses and never move your stuff. Last Sunday I was driving without my driver's license because I changed purses and didn't move my wallet to the new purse.

Did I say, "I L-O-V-E this purse."


"Teens who watched just 21 extra minutes of TV daily were more likely to become depressed as young adults, compared with those who watched less (2 hours and 38 minutes vs. 2 hours and 27 minutes), according to a recent study. Could it be a chicken-and-egg situation? Maybe, but research did exclude anyone who was depressed at the start. And really limiting the amount of TV anyone watches is never a bad thing."
Woman's Day July 2009

When our oldest child was just 8 years old, our TV "broke" and we just never got around to fixing it. As a consequence, our children played outside, used their imaginations, learned to communicate with other family members, became readers, yes and even studied the scriptures. I highly recommend you break your TV.

The first week is the hardest, the silence is deafening, but the adjustment was worth it.

I'm a day late, but you will understand when I tell you that I just spent one week with five of my grandchildren. I was a little busy and a little tired and had quite a bit of catching up to do.


Grandkids week
1
Number of mud fights


Number of splash parks visited



Number of times Tarzan got a personal cool down



Number of Candy Stores Visited



Number of cups of glitter vacuumed up
Number of successful all nighters pulled
Number of 3-D movies in the theater we watched

2
Number of water fights
Number of boys who got to spend 1 hour in the Apple Mac Store

4
Number of girls who got makeup

Number of boxes of cereal eaten

5
Number of Harry Potter movies watched
Number of meals Tarzan cooked outside for us


6
Number of huge trash bags filled

12
Number of tomatoes eaten

80+
number of paper plates used

84
Number of hours spent playing video games

100+
number of Plastic Cups used

168
Number of hours TV was on Disney Channel

174208
Highest score in Snood

???
How many times someone said “Shut the door.”

When I was in high school I broke my tailbone.


I don't recall how, but I do know that I carried around a rubber donut to sit on for about a year.

It wasn't very pretty, but it got me a lot of attention :-).

Anyway, we were all in Flagstaff at a music festival and I bent over a suitcase to get something and one of the girls in our room kicked me in the buttocks.

Paaaaaaiiiiiiinnnnn....

However, when the pain subsided, I was fixed -- leaving my tailbone just slightly slanted out and easily bumped and bruised.

Flash forward (clears throat and mumbles number of years) years.

I work with this great bunch of guys. If you follow my blog, you have seen this picture before.

So, we were sitting around the Perudo table playing ... don't get all pissy because we are State employees playing a game at work ... we were on our lunch break.

I kept complaining that the chair I was sitting on was really uncomfortable, like a spring had broken and was sticking me in the same buttocks mentioned earlier.

SteveE switched chairs with me... he is such a good boy. He is sitting down in the picture with his head back.

The offending chair...Later, at home, on a chair I use all the time, same thing...

What is going on?

So, here's the deal...

Tarzan made an exercise bench and we haven't padded it yet.

I am up to 44 sit ups a day with no pad...

and my poor buttocks (the same one mentioned above) has a floor burn on it--right on the tailbone.

Ouch!