Monday, July 28, 2008

A Lovely Day

Mom's funeral was Saturday. It was a lovely day. Not too much crying, and a whole lot of appreciation for who she was. It was so great to see so many friends and family. It was like one big reunion. The music was perfect. Kenneth Noble sang "As I Have Loved You" with the granddaughters singing back up. Wow! Mom asked him to sing at her funeral 30 years ago. She was so prepared for everything. Everything except lung cancer. I can't imagine anyone putting themselves at risk for this horrible disease. PLEASE DON'T EVER SMOKE! I know that this doesn't guarantee that you will never get lung cancer, but......It was so fun sitting around with my 7 siblings remembering and laughing as we prepared our parts of the program. It was been such a full, amazing week, but I am exhausted. I may sleep for a few days. Dad is still struggling a little, but seems to be coping better everyday. We will all miss her dearly.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

A Great Lady

Mom passed away last night surrounded by her family. She is finally resting and at peace.

Leona Carpenter Udall
Born: November 7, 1928
Died: July 21, 2008
Married: May 27, 1948-Lee Kenyon Udall
8 children, 41 grandchildren, 22 great grandchildren plus 3 on the way, Friends, Missionaries, Temple Workers, Clients, and countless others.
We all love you mom.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Difficult Week

March 2008
Mom has declined rapidly this week. Lung Cancer is EVIL. No one should have to suffer from it. She is comfortable and at peace and just waiting to go. Our family has all gathered to say our good-byes and to be together. It is so hard to watch all of this happen. I have been absorbed in her day to day care and haven't allowed myself to focus on the loss that is coming. It is probably a good thing, but I am sure that I will have some rough moments in the near future. I am brimming with emotion that I have to keep in check becasue mom doesn't want to cry. Crying closes off her airway and makes it hard for her to breathe at all. All of us who spend time with her are brave and calm at her house and then cry all the way home in the car. It is hard to exist that way, but it feel somewhat normal now. I'm not sure how we will adjust when we no longer ........Dad is doing fairly well. He tells her that she is still the most beautiful woman he has ever seen and kisses her. She is aware of what is going on, but often doesn't have the energy to force out any words. The are formed but soundless. We will carry on and continue our vigil and rely on the Lord to help us all endure.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Homemade Cheese!

Yep! I made my own mozzarella cheese this morning. I got the recipe from the book I read last week. It was SO easy. All of you can do it. You can get the ingredients from a health food store. It also works best on store bought milk so you don't have to go out and buy a cow. I did try it with raw milk from Matt's cow and it is good, but way more milky/buttery tasting. Not bad, just different. The pasteurized milk looks and tastes like the mozzarella you've been eating all your life. I also grew the cute little tomato in the pic. Call me "Digs With Fingernails" (you know, Dances with Wolves). I'm a nature girl. O.K. Not, but I can survive in the wild!

P.S. I will share the recipe for any that want to shun the supermarkets.


* I need to add one warning about the Michael Pollan book. There are 2 very bad words on page 383. I have them blacked out in my book. You could just skip the whole page, it isn't extremely relevant. Don't let this scare you away from reading the book though, it is worth skipping that page to read the rest. M


On a different note: I mowed Gr and Gr's lawn yesterday. I was wearing flip flops so I went looking for some other shoes to mow in..........I found my mom's old mowing shoes. You remember the thrift store Converse tennis shoes that are splattered with bleached spots. I wore them to mow really just because I needed shoes but as I made the pass by the carport, I remembered this picture.
Little did we know that this would be the last time mom "got her excercize" by mowing. We will be experiencing a whole bunch of "last times" over the next coulple of months. Things change so quickly. Makes me want to hold on to what I have even tighter.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Great Summer Read

I just finished two non-fiction books that forever changed the way I look at food. I know, you are thinking, boring!...NOT, they were fascinating, and intriguing. The first book is called, "Animal, Vegetable, Miracle" by Barbara Kingsolver. It is an in depth look at a year of eating. She and her family move to the family farm and decide to eat only what they grow or can purchase from nearby farmers. This isn't a preachy environmental book, just a detailed account of there endeavour. The author is funny, descriptive and engaging. Food has never been so entertaining. The second is called, "The Omnivore's Dilema" by Michael Pollan. This book follows four meals from seed to table. Each meal is totally different. McDonald's, commodity corn grower, organic farmer and the author's homemade meal. Very informative. A hint: He calls us humans "corn with legs". You'll have to read it to find out why. They are both on sale at Borders right now for BOGO half price. Happy reading!

Monday, July 7, 2008

Hello from Santa Monica

We are having a great time in So. Cal. Weather is perfect. Only bad thing was the city bus. We waited two hours for it after the fireworks friday night. Saturday we rented a car. After church yesterday we went to the LA Temple. It is enourmous! We are going to rent some cruisers (beach bikes) today and see the sites. We hate to come home tomorrow. Enjoy the pics.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

No Time To Blog!!!

OK, not really, but it sure has been a busy few weeks. First, we got to keep little Savanah for a day while her mother was having baby #4. Her daddy was in Iraq. He got home in time for the blessing. Lela (my sister) came from Utah and brought her 11 yr. old. He stayed with us while she helped mom. WILD! We had Jesse, Jeff, and Jack (neighbor and friend) most of the time. They had fun and even had a camp out in our back yard one night. Next was Emily's All-Star game for VB. Her team (South) won. It was fun to see her compete one last time. Then we went to Mesa for ASU orientation and registration. Em got her classes and now we are rethinking her working during the semester. She is taking Chem 1 and Pre-Calc among others. Sarah's birthday was Friday and we went to Big Surf. It was a blast. Of course we all got burned, but who cares. We also went to see Wall E. It was a cute show. Jesse and Sarah posed with Po from Kung Foo Panda at the theater. On the way there the sun was covered by some smoke from a nearby fire. It was eerie looking, but cool. Saturday was Megan's wedding. Monday, Nona and I tackled a huge project at moms. Weevils! Yuck. 2 large paper sacks of oatmeal had become infested. They were everywhere!!!! We got the laundry room cleaned out and bleached and threw away a whole lot of food that was crawling. When Jayna came in the afternoon to start on the Kitchen, Grandma C. had taken most of it out of the trash and put it back. So......after she left for Mesa, we threw it away again and cleaned some more. They were in the couches, beds, bathroom, and on mom. Today she found one in the opening of her G-tube! AGHHH! Tomorrow we will bring the army (our kids) and anhialate the rest of them. On thurday, we leave for California for 6 days. Nona, Dena, and Lela are coming too. We leave on the midnight train (la-tee-da, oh boy, what fun, uh huh, whoo whoo) from Tucson to LA, then to Santa Monica where we will watch fireworks, shop at the farmer's market, play at the beach, wander through the shops, lay around and possibly rest. Enjoy the pics. I'll have more when we get back.

...physically and mentally!