Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Valentine's Day.

Dan bought me roses for Valentine's Day.  He's such a romantic and I love him.

A February Trip to Portland

Dan and I have been looking at homes in the Vancouver area.  A realitor sends us emails with listings and we check out the homes.  It won't be right away but we've thought it might be nice to live a little closer to some of the children after retirement.  We've tried to keep our minds and hearts open so we're wise in our decisions.  We found one home that we thought might work out nicely and used that as an excuse to take a trip to Portland.  Dan was actually the one who initiated the idea and contacted Tessha and Patrick about a possible trip over President's Day break. 

With that done, the rest fell into place and I took time off of the pharmacy, got us listed on some flights and make a reservation in Salt Lake.

So, Thursday Feb. 13th after school was over we loaded our bags in the car.  Alisha had decided to stay home so we said good bye to her and we were on our way.  We stayed the night at the Microtel and caught the shuttle to the airport the next morning.  We didn't even have to try for the early morning 6:30 flight.  The nonstop 9:30 flight was wide open.  So nice!!!  I sat next to a young boy of 6 and we chatted most of the way.  He was going to visit his Granpa and Granma and go skiing with them.  He played with my iPad and we did cross word puzzles.  Mostly, I just told him we were "getting closer" and would be there "pretty soon."  He make the flight seem rather quick for me.

Tessha picked us up and took us to a nearby Shari's for lunch.  Melissa, the realitor met us there and we all enjoyed a good meal and reviewed the housing market in Vancouver.  The house we'd come to look at had a sell pending so we didn't even go look.  She told us that almost any decent house with a reasonable price tag was being lapped up quickly.  We called the owner on another house and were told we had to make an appointment to see it and there were already 6 others looking at it.  Since we're not that close to wanting to move we decided to just keep looking and to start looking for a loan if we should choose to go.

After lunch we went to Tessha's and Patrick's place in Tigard.  They have a nice 2 bedroom, 2nd story apt. that they call their "Tree House".  It's got beautiful trees all around it and being up a little higher they have the benefit of being among the leaves.  Of course, the leaves were bare in February but you could still get a similar effect. 

We relaxed and watched a couple of Netflix waiting for Patrick to get home.  Tessha had fixed us a wonderful dinner (I still want the recipe.) and we enjoyed each other's company that evening. 

The next day we went house looking in the Portland area and quickly remembered why we didn't move there in 2001.  The homes are all way too expensive for us.  We even looked at little, 2 bedroom homes and found them in the 200-250,000 range.  Sad, but not for us.  So we went to dinner.  We ate at the Claims Jumper and for the most part the food was really good.  I know the desserts were.  Afterwards we checked out the AT&T store before going to the movies.  We saw "The Quartet" and loved it!!  I highly recommend it; especially for us older folks. 

Then we went back to the AT&T store where we changed Dan's phone for an iPhone that Patrick had.  He was giving it to Dan since it is a lot easier for Dan to use than the Droid that he had.  We were all having trouble entering data into his old one and he wasn't able to get Instagram on it.  Patrick had an extra iPhone that he thought might work well for Dan so we had Dan's number but on it and we left the Droid for Patrick to keep. 

When we got back to the apartment, Patrick stayed up to 2:00 in the morning getting every thing just perfect on Dan's new phone.  I had bought him a cover, charger and earphones for it and he was ready to go.  Tessha took us to the airport and again we walked right on to the 9:30 non-stop flight home.  So nice!!  Thank you so much, Luke!!

We took a taxi back to the hotel since they had sent their shuttle driver go home early, got our car and headed north.  The ground was totally white from snow but the sun was shinning and we were glad to be heading home again.  The roads were good; fantastic compared to just a week before when we had to pull over for a place to stay the night.  It looked beautiful and spring is coming.  Besides, it was wonderful to see Alisha again.

Thanks for the visit Tessha and Patrick!!  We love you and loved staying in your "Tree House" for a couple of days.  Thanks for all your help with the house hunting and the iPhone!

Monday, February 25, 2013

A February Trip to Utah

On February 8th we made a second trip to the VA Medical Center in Salt Lake.  This time it was a Speech/Voice/Respiration Evalation by a Speech/Language Pathologist.  Fun, uh?  I thought so and I think Dan enjoyed it since they did a feeding evaluation determine if swallowing was a problem.  No!
He was able to eat all the snacks and drink all the drinks without any problems.  However, he has very shallow breathing with very little diaphramic support.  She gave him some exercises to do and will do another eval in March. 
On this trip we had a very fun experience having an early dinner with Johm and Sue Laing.  They are Patrick's parents and they live in Salt Lake.  They had us for lunch one day when Tessha and Patrick were dating.  We were flying back from Seattle and Patrick had arranged for us to meet his parents.  Sue had a wonderful lunch ready for us and we visited for a little while before driving on home.  Now, almost a year later, we met up with them in SL.  They introduced us to a wonderful resturant on 300 S called "The Other Place".  The food was wonderful and the company even better.  The only problem was that even though I had my camera in my purse, we were having such a nice time, I forgot to take it out and get a picture. 

Regardless, we had a nice afternoon and a great dinner before heading down to Orem to spend the night.

Laura and Mark were doing a last chance Utah ski day so the next morning they brought Jace and Annie to our hotel room and we all went swimming.

Gracie kept Brooklyn so she could drive her up to the slopes at feeding time.  Kristi and the kids came over and joined us in the pool.
When it was time to check out we went to Kristi's place and she took the boys and Katara to a birthday party in Sprinfield. 
With Jace, Annie and Marley, Dan and I stopped by Burger King and got hamburgers and fries for all. 

We ate them at the house and then played the rest of the afternoon.  It started snowing pretty hard around 3:00 when Kristi got home.  We were expecting Laura and Mark soon.  The plan was to head home that evening but it was snowing so hard that we keep putting off leaving thinking it would ease up a bit.  Laura talked us into staying in Orem.  She even arranged a room for us that night at the Orem Hampton Inn.  We were excited at the thought of staying another night and got it the car to head to the hotel. 

I don't remember if it were Dan or Alisha but one of them spoke up and said, "Don't you have to work tomorrow?  OH NO!!! I had forgotten.  The pharmacy had given me Saturday off so I didn't have to go down and come back both on Friday.  But, I had promised I'd be back to work for Sunday so we turned around and went back to Kristi's to tell Laura we wouldn't be able to stay.  We had to head for Idaho.   The roads looked ok; not good, but ok.

But that changed soon after we were on the freeway.  It was slushy, very slick ice and cars and trucks were going every which way.  It was so slick that I was really afraid.  The police were on the right and the left as cars were sliding off the road in both directions.  We even saw a white truck right in front of us suddenly start spinning and went through three lanes of traffic before it was on the side of the road.  Luckily, he didn't hit anyone and nobody hit him.  Amazing when you think of it.  About the time we got to south SL I called Laura and told her we were turning around and coming back.  We weren't going to make it home alive that night.  She told me to pick a place to stop and she'd get us a room wherever that was.  She didn't even want us to drive to come back.  

We were supposed to pick up a gift for Tessha and Patrick from Sue and John before heading home so we decided to try to get to their place in North Salt Lake and then we'd find the Hampton in Woods Cross and stay there that night.

It meant that we were on the road a little longer but we were blessed and got there safely.   We were so grateful for a nice place to spend the night off of the roads. Thank you, Laura!!  We spent the night there and headed home the next morning.  I will say the roads were a little better, not much, but a little. And it was light outside with some sun to melt the ice.

It took us about 5 hours but we made it home and I was at the pharmacy by noon.  I have to say, this was one trip I was just glad to get home safely~ even if I had to work when I got there.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Snow Days and New Fish

 One day the driveway was covered with snow and the next day I was able to clear it all off.  We had two school closure days in Jan.  The first was because it was 20* below zero with the wind chill factor and the second day it was because of blowing winds and drifting snow.  Unfortunately, they don't make the closure announcement until 30-40 mintes after I am already at school.  I was able to stay and work as comp time for the sick leave day I needed to take the following Friday. 
In the mean time I bought another fish.  This time I got an algae eater to help keep the tank clean.  He's done a great job and we call him "Pleasy" because he is so nice to have around.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

The January Trip to Utah

Dan had a VA appointment for an MRI on Janurary 18th so we made the trip down to Salt Lake.  Afterwards we found our way to Mark and Laura's new place in Lehi where Laura had made a yummy dinner and Gracie had brought Olive Garden bread sticks.
It was good to have a few minutes with them that evening.  Laura worked on my I pad for me and Mark made paper airplanes with Jace.  Annabelle picked out one of Kevin's Barbie Princesses and Grace left on a date. 
Later we headed on down to Orem where we had a room for the night.  On Saturday we went to Haini and Kristi's house so Marley and Katara could pick out their princess dolls, too.  I'm not very good at taking pictures but this is what I have

(I still need help turning my pictures upright.)  We left and came home later that night.  The roads were good both going down and coming back.  In January. that's a real blesing.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Alisha's Beautiful

Alisha got a new Christmas dress and the first time she wore it she looked so beautiful, we just had to take some pictures.

I can't seem to upright my pictures on my blogs anymore.  Any suggestions?