Saturday, November 15, 2008

Kelly Update

I have been getting lots of phone calls and emails from family and friends asking about Kelly and how he is doing. I thought this might be the easiest and quickest way to get the word out to all of you who have shown love and concern.
For those of you who don't know, Kelly was diagnosed with stage 4 esophageal cancer last May and his prognosis was not very promising. The cancer had metastasised into his lower back on his first lumbar region. He has been fighting long and hard these past few months with all sorts of different treatments, all with promising outcomes.
Unfortunately he is not doing so well at the present time. He has been in a lot of pain and it seems as if the cancer has spread. The pain is no longer just in his back but has also gone down into his hips and both legs down to his knees. We are very greatful at this time that he is not having difficulty swallowing. Luckily we have some pain specialists who come into the home and have made him as comfortable as possible, which is hard to do considering the amount of pain he is constantly in. He is fighting hard and all of your prayers and faith I know would be greatly appreciated by him and his family. Thank you all for your constant love and concern.
He has taught me the meaning of faith and what it means to never give up. I love you Kelly.

The Things You Learn About Your Friends...

We had the
opportunity tonight to go with some friends to the "Farley Family Reunion." For those of you who don't know, it is a one man show and he portrays all of the characters that you might see at your own family reunion. It really was quite funny and you would be surprised at how many people that you actually think you recognize. Curt and Kathy Lowe invited us and Ryan and Cassie Farley, no relation to the play (although some of the people in the audience might have been related to them lol)

We went out to eat first at this new restaraunt called Paradise Bakery and Deli in American Fork. None of us had ever been so it was a new experience for all. The food was actually really good and their cookies were to die for. While we were waiting in line, they brought around a sample bowl of the cookies and the chocolate ones were pretty amazing. Of course most of us only got one sample because Cassie kept making me steal them out of the bowl for her when the server wasn't looking. We finished up dinner and headed for the play.

Well we got there about 40 minutes early so we decided to kill some time in the car chatting. I have decided that this could be a dangerous situation. The more time you have, the more things you learn about your friends that you had no idea. It really can be quite enlightening. For instance...

I learned that it is Curt's birthday in 3 weeks and he is turning a REALLY BIG number. Happy birthday Curt.
I also learned that Kathy and Curt have a friend by the name of Harry Orchid and you never know when he might show up.
I learned from Cassie that you should never brush your teeth with anti itch cream because it makes your tongue swell up and go numb. (thanks for the tip Cassie)
We finally killed enough time and went into the theater. As we entered we had to make nametags for ourselves just like you were at a real family reunion. Everybody's last name had to be Farley since that was the name of the play. It wasn't a problem for Ryan and Cassie but the rest of us made up our own names. Mitch was Charlie Farley (which by the way is Ryan and Cassie's son's name) and I became Frannie Farley.
We got to our seats and as I looked around, I swear that there must have been actors in the audience because there were some really weird looking people there. The lady sitting behind us must have thought that the show was the funniest thing she ever saw because she laughed so hard at every comment that she would put herself into coughing fits. Along with her was the woman who must have had a bit of a cold because I honestly have never heard anyone blow their nose for so long and so loud. The guy in front of us, whose name must have been Bubba, had this thick ol mop of hair on his head that he shook into Kathy's popcorn. She actually had to change seats because she couldn't see around his head.
The evening ended with lots of laughs and friendships made stronger...thanks for the night guys, it was one I won't forget.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Susie Homemaker? I think not

There is something about the fall season that makes me feel like Betty Crocker or Martha Stewart. I am not sure if it is the crisper air or the smells of people using their fireplaces but there is something in the air. It seems like wherever I drive there are fruit and vegetable stands with cars stopped along the way buying produce. I decided to stop. That I think was my first mistake. It is kinda like going grocery shopping when you are hungry. The damage had been done. I bought 2 lugs (what is a lug anyway?) of tomatoes. One regular and one roma. I was actually feeling pretty good about the whole thing. On the way home however, it hit me. What the crap? What am I going to do with 2 lugs of tomatoes? I know...salsa., stewed tomatoes and spaghetti sauce.

I got home and pulled out the dust covered canning jars. (not joking the dates on the lids were 1997) I loaded up the dishwasher, had Mitch run to the store and buy lids, got the rest of the ingriedients out of my garden...that's right I have a garden... and got started.

I went into my recipe drawer and found "The Best Salsa Ever" recipe. Hmmmm sounded easy enough. It did however occur to me that I was going to need some help and what better bonding moment between mother and daughter than canning together right? I got Kylie out of her sleeping stupor and made her come and help. She was a great sport and let me take pictures along the way.

To be fair, I did let her choose what her task would be. She had the option of slicing and dicing the jalapenos and anaheim chilies or chopping the onions. She chose the onions because I have this handy dandy onion chopper from Pampered Chef. I am sure she thought "quick and easy" and then she could escape. LOL nope. She had to chop 9 onions and it turns out it wasn't so easy. Not only were they the strongest smelling onions I have ever come in contact with, they imediately burned everyone's eyes that came into the kitchen. I honestly have not ever been around that strong of onions before.

It didn't take long to discover that we couldn't work in the kitchen without opening the windows and turning on the fan. It really was quite funny. Mitch came home with the lids and imediately his eyes started to water. He had to go into the bathroom and rinse his eyes.

Here is Kylie trying to get the smell of the onions to waft under the bathroom door while Mitch is rinsing his eyes.

Well after 6 hours of cutting and chopping and "cooking down" and stirring every 15 minutes for 3 hours, we finally got our harvest bounty. With the help of Mitch, Kylie had escaped hours ago, we got the salsa poured into the jars and waited for the seal to pop. Which by the way I never heard cause no one told me that when you cold pack, the entire bottle has to cool down before they completely pop. THAT would have been a good tip to put into the recipe.

We finished, cleaned up and I looked around and I still had a lug of regular tomatoes. I thought to myself, tomorrow I am going to make the stewed tomatoes and spaghetti sauce. I went downstairs into the storage room to get more jars so I could stick them into the dishwasher to prepare for my adventure in the morning and found 2 cases of store bought stewed tomatoes, 2 cases of spaghetti sauce from the cannery and 2 cases of salsa from the cannery. I muttered something under my breath, (can't seem to remember what it was) and stomped back upstairs. The lug of tomatoes went to Angela.

I got 15 jars of salsa after 6 hours and burned retinas...

Pretty sure whatever was in the air is gone...can't smell it anymore cause my house still smells like onions.

Halloween...not so much fun anymore...

I love the holidays. It all starts for me on October 1. Out come the boxes of decorations, I throw out the old and replace with the new. Tombstones, ghosts, grim reapers and so on. We eat dinner out of pumpkins, Chad and his friends sit on the roof and chuck candy at the trick or treaters and scare them to death. We decide on costumes and get the necessary items to make them perfect. Ahhh the fun of the holiday... Not so much anymore. What happened? Could it possibly be that I no longer have little kids? No costumes, they have their own parties and lives to attend to. I didn't even get dinner out of my pumpkin this year cause I was reffing the state volleyball games. (who scheduled that over Halloween?)

I did get to see Grant, Angela and Victoria however.
They were so cute in their scarecrow family costumes. (Thanks for driving all the way here!)
Still waiting for the other two grandchildren halloween pics...(hint hint Heather)

I think my biggest gripe however has to be the jerk that invented "trunk-or-treat". What happened to going door to door and getting as much loot as possible? Taking your mom's favorite pillow case and dragging it down the sidewalk cause it was so full of candy? I remember my brother Kelly and me dumping our haul on the family room floor and trading for our favorite candy and both walking away with a grin thinking that we totally ripped the other one off. NOW? they walk around the parking lot and get their candy. Please. I only had 4 knocks on the door from trick or treaters and they were teenagers...hmmm not quite the same. Even though Chris, Chad and Kylie are not home anymore to make my Halloween experience complete, I did find some old pictures of them at Halloween. I suppose it will have to do for now. *sigh*