Tuesday, September 28, 2010
Ashton is amazing! He hooked up the new printer that Jared installed last week to my computer in a blink. We saw the new owl movie with them which had amazing animation but was pretty much owls fighting for an hour and a half. I was half an hour late so Ashton can give you the story line and message if you need it! During the movie Eliza's tooth fell out which we were all excited about! The tooth fairy couldn't find us the first night but showed up the second night with splendor!
One of the great things this weekend was having the Power of Moms Advisory Board meeting here on Saturday morning. The day before April flew in to join Saren who spoke that day at a conference for women called Touchpoint. It was for women who run businesses online. It was created by a friend who served just after Saren did in Bulgaria. So we had a wonderful houseful on Friday night with the Looslis, April and Kelly, the conference organizer.
It was a delight to have Neylan, Whitney, Allyson and Kathy as well as Jared and Dad join us the next morning for this very important advisory board meeting where we heard about all the exciting things that Power of Moms is doing. Board members offered great ideas and it was an inspiring meeting!
We are so proud of all the hard work that Saren and April have done on this! It is so important to give moms the help they need to raise the next generation. It's going to go BIG!
Friday, September 24, 2010
There is a symbol that we noticed as we have traveled through Bali that permeates their temples, community centers and homes everywhere. We liked it so much that we had it carved into the edge of our Balinese tables and our front door is covered with it.
It is a symbol that means “Life is Always Changing”.
So true! Children are only the age they are for one day and then they’re another day older. Life is never exactly the same so we have to catch the moments as they come!
Charity came home from San Francisco last weekend for her best friend’s wedding. These two have been together from day one of their lives. What great memories they have of growing up together.
But now that Jane is married, the friendship is still strongly intact but in some ways…changed!
Still great…but different!
Soon this will be Charity in someone else’s arms!
As if that weren’t enough, the seasons are also changing! The undergrowth on the hill across from our house looks very different than it did in the spring when it felt as though we lived in verdant Switzerland!
And the quakies are starting to turn yellow.
And the mums are out!
You gotta love the changing of the seasons!
One of the most pervading changes in our society is the “in your face” sexually promiscuous media. When we were in New York last week, we saw the sign below everywhere! To see this when we were young adults would have been unthinkable. Even today it almost breathtaking. If my mother (who was born in 1905) would have seen it, she probably would have died of embarrassment and fainted on the spot!
I’m referring to the sign, not the advertisement for the movie (which is pretty crazy in its own right)! Dad did call the number and was just a bunch of “if you are a straight female touch 1, if you are a gay male, touch 2 etc. etc.
What a world!
We are so grateful for the guidance of the scriptures and the anchor of a living prophet who guides us and gives us direction that helps us to live happy, healthy lives. Because….the world is precarious and always changing!
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
Of course one of the main reasons that we go to NY in September other than to play tennis on the grass courts is to go to the US Open. Do you think we’re just a little on the OCD side on tennis? We do love the festive atmosphere and saw some fun matches in beautifully warm but windy weather!
After stomping my feet a bit about being a bit too sports oriented, Rick relented and we got tickets to The Screwtape Letters, which we LOVED! For one hour the man who played Screwtape never quit bringing the Screwtape letters to life. So thoughtful and stimulating!
Afterward Gordon picked us up in his car and we went to get some heavenly gelato. Gordon always to has a lot of interesting things to say and interesting people to talk about. It was a fun couple of hours.
The next day we did some catching up on some work at the Imagine Learning apartment. Although Anita and Tal had gone to AZ for a Care for Life Board Meeting we did get to spend Tuesday night with them at a very interesting documentary called “Abraham’s Children” produced by a Swiss film maker. A very interesting look into the Muslim world. Afterward we enjoyed some great thai food with both couples at Noah and Krisit’s apartment. FUN night!
We did get a chance to go to the MOMA (Museum of Modern Art). As the years go by, Dad gets even more eccentric. You just never know what he’s going to do. In this case he decided that he’d like to see the exhibits from a different view so he asked for a wheelchair!
The art, as always was splendid! We saw Hazel’s favorite Matisse
and one of my favorite Kandinskys
Of course the design rooms are also fun
At the very same time we were at the MOMA on the East coast Charity was at the MOMA on the West coast in San Francisco. For an exciting in-depth lesson on the wonders of modern art check out her blog here.
Next we headed for Central Park where Dad went from the wheel chair to biking through Central Park. The wind was whipping my hair so hard that I couldn’t even see where I was walking let alone where I would be biking so I opted for FAO Schwarz which is always fun!
As I was standing there in an avalanche of toys, a man next to me asked the sales person, “Is this where I can find the stuffed animals?” The sales person said, “Yes,” and without cracking a smile he said, “Is this all?” And the answer to that was actually “No, if you make a 360 you can see nothing but stuffed animals!”
In other departments there were a few dolls too!
as well as a Harry Potter department complete with sorting hats!
Then it was dinner in the food hall in the basement of the Ritz and on to one of the best Broadway plays we’ve ever seen…A Little Night Music.
Bernadette Peters and Elaine Stritch are absolutely amazing! The message isn’t as inspiring as Wicked but the acting dancing, script, dry humor, music were fantastic! It’s the first time we’ve every seen an instantaneous spontaneous standing ovation in a New York theatre.
On Saturday Noah (who had been in Orange County for three days) Kristi and the kids picked us up in their zip car minivan and we had the most fun in the country picking apples!
Here we are in the hay wagon on our way to the orchards:
There’s nothing like being up in a tree!
A great time was had by all!
On Sunday morning we found a 9 am sacrament meeting in Inwood so we could catch our plane and it turned out to be a Spanish Ward. We met lots of nice people and loved seeing that beautiful, quiet neighborhood.
We’re home at last and on to a big week here with lots of things coming up! More on that in another post! Are we blessed or what?
Saturday, September 11, 2010
What a sad thing it is to contemplate that on a day exactly like today was in New York nine years ago, terror that none of us will ever forget struck New York and changed history forever!
It just happened that we met with our agent for our new book on Entitlement at the Harvard Club a couple of days ago.
The next day we had lunch with our new editor at Penguin and her number 1 assistant darling Miriam Rich (daughter of our dear friends Bob and Mary Rich who we just did the program with at the Visitor’s Center in DC). I forgot to take a picture…darn but it just happened that directly across the street from where we had lunch was the Fire Museum which held a memorial exhibit of 9/11. Since it was 9/9 we went in and were full of sorrow as we remembered that fateful day!
It’s good to think about and mourn again with those who lost loved ones, not only here but at the Pentagon and on that field in the midwest.
Next year will be the 10 year anniversary (how is that possible) and they plan to have the memorial and the new building finished by then. Today everything in the media was plastered with remembrances of 9/11 including an enormous flag draped across the George Washington Bridge where we drove with the N&K Eyres (blog coming later on that). It’s all so sobering! What a sad sad day!
How lucky are we that we got to be in NYC to see McKay skip off to his first day of school at Public School #151!
He was pretty worried about having a red lunch “box” to put in his red backpack because he thought it might get camouflaged!
Despite how Lyla looks at this very moment, the whole family was soooo excited!
Grandfather…giving last minute instructions while proud Daddy records every step on camera:
Not many dads can pick up an apple for the lunchbox (or the teacher?) from a street vendor on the 3 block walk to school!
We were here with the McKay and Lyla in May while Noah and Kristi went to Paris to meet Tal and Anita with the baby. While walking down the street with McKay that weekend we saw a family we knew who knew McKay as well. The mom leaned over and said, “McKay, are you starting kindergarten this year?” and McKay replied with confidence, “Yes, but I already know everything!”
You can see that confidence in his face! Does he look ready or what?
The whole school is stuffed with just kindergarteners and 1st graders so there are a lot of pre-schoolers and babies involved too!
What a great story for McKay to tell his kids…that he started school on the upper east side of Manhattan on September 8th, 2010…even if he did already know everything!
Wednesday, September 8, 2010
The ride was spectacular!
The tennis club was straight out of the 1800's! Everyone had to wear pure white, including white collared tee shirts. Last year his shorts were cream and a great guy ran home and got him some shorts of his own so he could play.
What a guy!
Monday, September 6, 2010
The Rising Star Outreach luncheon with Becky Douglas was so fun! So many wonderful people showed up there to hear about RSO while 95 golfers were on the Golf Course in Heber at the 1st Annual Shawn Bradley Red Ledges Golf Tournament.
We smile when we remember that Shawn really spoiled things for Tal in India because he had gone the year before we got there. When they saw Tal who is 6’9”at the Rising Star school and the leprosy affected colonies, they wanted to know where that REALLY tall (7’4”) guy was!
Sadly Shawn’s dad (61) had fallen off a roof two week earlier and died. An autopsy showed that he had a heart attack before he fell. Bless Shawn for carrying on with the tournament. We had a nice chat about all the things you learn from unexpected disasters in life.
This is the only picture I got of the whole thing! Duh!
Hours later we were on a plane to LA for an EO meeting with a terrific and diverse group of EOers for a parenting seminar and then we took off for Orange County to take a look at the new haunts of Noah and Kristi who are moving there in about 7 weeks.
I love California but I never know where I am when I’m there. i guess that will change when they actually move there and I get to drive around and figure it out!
After being in Noah and Kristi’s new neck of the woods last week, we are now on the other coast in Eli and Julie’s beautiful new condo in Washington D.C. even as I write. They are on Capitol Hill and from their roof you can see the Capitol
The Washington Monument
The Jefferson Monument
And they can almost see the games at the new National’s stadium which is literally three blocks from their house.
Their new condo has about 50 feet of glass on the 11th floor so all you have to do is look out to get inspired! Here is their beautiful new kitchen:
Of course the first order of business was to find a good sushi restaurant and indeed we did!
The Kobe beef burger was to die for (no pun intended)
The next morning, the most important thing was finding those clay courts so Eli and Dad could play! Dad is headed for the grass court national tournament in New Jersey next week so he was really going working hard to get ready! Eli was cool as a cucumber as dad shows off his six pack!
Besides a new house, Eli and Julie are sporting a new car! What wonders two incomes can provide! We so excited for them!
It’s a Junior Phaeton!!! (except that it’s spotlessly clean inside and out).
Eli is the new ward mission leader and yesterday we got to go to the baptism of a terrific young mother! What a ward! Two people were confirmed new members of the church today in sacrament meeting. One was the bright boyfriend of a darling girl named Charity, who has just recovered from a double lung transplant and is an opera singer. They are in their late 20s or early thirties. She’s still singing. Such an amazing couple!
After a wonderful time meeting so many people who love Eli and Jule at the ward we had the rare privilege of speaking once more at the Washington DC Temple Visitor’s Center which is directed by our faithful neighbors from Salt Lake, Bob and Mary Rich. Mary prepared a scrumptous dinner for us at their apartment and we were joined by Eli and Julie and Brent and Esther Jane Ward whom we were delighted to see!
There was a terrific audience of about 400 and we had so much fun! The best part is meeting friends of our kids. We found friends that knew every one of our kids, including Josh’s friend from High School, Shannon, who has 6 kids! Two of our missionaries who are now grandparents were there too! FUN!
At the center, there was an incredible display of amazing sculptures called “The Healing Power of the Savior” which included absolutely gorgeous sculptures of the poignant moments in the life of the Savior. Somehow I think the artist (we think her name is Angela Johnson) is related to Shawni’s Dave. Can’t remember how. Anyway, she is a genius!
The Garden of Gethsemane
The view of Lazarus as he sat up in his tomb.
It was amazing!
I couldn’t finish this last night because we had to watch a third set tie breaker at the US Open at 1:30 a.m.
And now…another Labor Day has come and gone! We had breakfast this morning with a darling couple who are friends of Julie and Eli. He is Lorraine Swifts’ nephew and she is from Utah and has a dance degree from Julliard. They are expecting a baby in January. So fun to talk to them!
This afternoon we went…of course…to a Nats game! They played the Mets and I got to see my first grand slam by a guy who just came up from the minors 6 days ago. Baseball isn’t my favorite sport but it was great to be there with Dad (who insisted that we go and then promptly fell asleep) as well as darling Eli and Julie!
Now were squished onto a bus loaded with holiday revelers going home to NYC! Noah and Kristi, McKay, Lyla and Jacobson AND Tal and Anita, here we come!