Saturday, February 28, 2009

And We Danced. Most Romanically & Kiely in Her Norwegian Folk Dress

Marnie took this sweet picture of us dancing. A moment in my history. Steve wasn't too happy about it. I was thrilled because I love to dance. I have never danced with Steve in all the time I've known him and everyone around us helped me making him feeling guilty. I love guilt.

This is Kiely in Steve's grandmother's native folkwear of Norway. Steve grandfather lines also had Norwegian. Kiely could have just as well been there. She has her grandmother's wide shoulders and very fair skin. Kiely looks beautiful and has done dance since she was three years old. I could tell she was in heaven wearing the beautiful Norwegian dress.

In the Valentine picture, above ... doesn't Steve look like such a Viking?

The hat and bodice were embroidered and beaded because it was for dance performances. The dresses are in different colors and design depending where the family is from. Sophia was family names: NEILSEN, Beckstrom, MORTHENSEN, OLSEN, NIKOLAISEN,Olson, Eckeland, Hansen, Nelson, and more. I noticed a link and copied it so here it is: Neilson Family Pedigree from: Stenkjar, Norway

The bunad Kiely is wearing is for performances and dancing. The original one from Stenkjar is red damask bodice with clasps. Black wool skirt, white, embroidered with white shirt, blue flowered apron with a belt and brooch, and lastly an embroidered red hat and one silk scarf around the head and a printed or embroidered shawl around her shoulders and tucked in the bodice vest.

We were super excited to get pictures of the dress and that Kiely was with us to model it for us. Absolutely beautiful.

Kiely's other side is mostly British Isles, almost all Irish. My mother's maiden name is O'Connor and lots of others. I think there is a bit of Welch, Dutch, French, and Prussian, too. But Great-Grandma Loepp McKean married an Irishman, and never spoke German. The Mennonites were driven from one country to the next.This story of religious intolerance sounds a bit familiar if you are LDS.You understand.

Our family loves to celebrate our genealogy on St. Patrick's Day. How 'bout green spuds! Actually, it's always cabbage, spuds, and brisket in one big pot every year. We love beer, but I have a Guinness Stout in my cupboard, just to freak my friends out ... just kidding ... I tried to increase the goat milk production by putting it in the milker's grain. The goats hated it because they are La Manchas and don't like Irish beer. I guess I'll have to try "Dos XX" or "Corona" lol No one believes me that the beers are for the goats when I try and buy it, not even my husband. I love this time of year!

Kiely's regional Folk Bunad
from Steinkjer, Nord Trondelag, Norway

Valentine's Day Dance. Yay... He danced with Me First Time in 40 Years. Kiely In Norwegian Folk Wear From Sophia Neilson Patten's Homeland

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Santa Paula Fire Training Video

I'm so proud of my captain, well, both my captains. Dustin, my son, was the "Captain Training Instructor." I'll have to ask my husband, the other captain, who did the PIO work with the Ventura County Star reporter, Anthony Plascencia, what Dustin's "big" acronym or his assignment name is. My Steve did a great job narrating the training exercise and I'm so proud of him. He really is an awesome and professional speaker.

Dustin has done this kind of training once with a real house before and now both, were extremely successful. I'm so impressed with the amount of work that he had to do to prepare the house. It was a huge assignment to gather and coordinate all the different agencies that came and participated. The neighboring business was used as a training exercise for arson investigation in addition to yesterday's drill. Dustin is ... no words to explain how impressed Steve and I are with your drill. So many firefighters and new rookies were there and it all went great. Safety is #1 with Dustin and I know where he gets it!

Friday is when the real fire starts. The real "burn!" I'm begging for a picture of "our guys" in front of a burning house and show their "brotherhood."

I know there is so much more I should be relating about this drill. Please listen to my husband's video about my son's drill.

Santa Paula Fire Department Training And Burn. I'm So Proud of Dustin Lazenby

Thursday, February 19, 2009

The Handkerchief Mouse and Laughing At Inappropiate Moments , ROLL YOUR UNDERWEAR?

I haven't posted much lately because I crashed our big computer, I know it can be fixed, but need money..Steve's CERT lap top that he had to buy, has a broken frame, a flaw from the computer company, yes it can be fixed too. Just need to send it in. More money and time to wrap it up properly and suck all the information out of it.

Tuff times are here especially with us. Money is really tight, but the other "big" events are so out-weighing the money stuff, that since we've paid our tithing we can just let it go and have faith. I need to do that more often and have faith in all things.

I loved our Valentine's Night "Sock Hop" party at the Church. The dance and fun music was wonderful. I really got to dance with my husband, Steve for the first time in 40 years. I didn't dance when we were dating. Unbelievable, huh? He danced at my kid's weddings, but not with me. And only one dance. So, I didn't even know if he could shuffle around. We danced slow twice and Marnie even took a picture of us together. Thank you, Marnie. The dance had no lines for dinner, it was with a bunch of sweet, wonderful friends all having fun, and best of took me back to sweet-heart times. Yeah, and it was free! I hope it's an annual event.

Sunday, oh no...I must confess. Whenever I really need to "sit tight" at Church. (Oh! Translation: Sit and listen carefully to the speakers, be reverent, perfectly mannered, and have my legs crossed at the ankles) I get so "antsy"! You know by now I talk with quirky-country sayings. "Sitting loose" would be sitting on the back row in the breezeway area, so we can play tricks on people (no one can see us) like putting sunglasses on when the new bishopric was put-in and they were all bald. Fun! No back row out there now...with an average of 60-65 members average attendance. We don't use the breezeway anymore. Yes, we ARE the "mission field".

Okay, I'm sitting tight and I'm getting side-tracked. I was thinking of Brother Skousen and tearing up and I pulled my hankie out. I touched my tears and then started making his favorite trick with a hankie. It was a jumping mouse that always made me laugh and amused my children...and scared the most prissy lady in our ward. She actually screamed when it jumped during Church, but in the foyer... and had to be shushed by the Sunday School Presidency. I think she went home. Anyway...back to trying to fold my little mouse. I wasn't making much progress and Kiely grabbed it and quickly-- as I became more teary that I couldn't make it-- She rolled it up and there it was like a "Tootsie Roll". I said, "Where are the ears?" Kiely pulled-out the side she thought was the ears, but it was a tail. Funny, it was like a rabbit's ear. And we looked at each other and the little quick-witted girl, that she is--she said, "(giggle) LAB RAT!" Kiely said that, sorta' loud. I started laughing like nuts, and the bench started rockin'...Kiely couldn't hold it in, but she did better than I did. She and I just laughed hard, side hurting, hand over the mouth, but not out-loud, really. I did "snort" a couple times and coughed along with it. People had to know what was going on, it was during the closing song and the closing prayer. Don't you hate it when that happens? I really felt the heat in my face as it turned red. Jack Skousen would have loved it. I got the "stink-eye" from my husband and Kiely and I busted-up again after Church and before Sunday School. It wasn't loud. It seemed just a "comic-relief" and I think when Church was over I skipped out. Well, as well as I can skip. In my own mind...type of thing.

Here's a link to an easy way to Make The Mouse.

Or another good
one is: Hanky Mouse

There are lots of easy instructions on a handkerchief mouse on the Internet. I love it. Hope to master the trick like Brother Skousen.

Here's a tip for using the "mouse-roll" in everyday life! Let's give our girls lots of practice folding clothes. Girls do have quite a bit of laundry, right ? ROLL YOUR UNDERWEAR

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Valentine's Day Post. This is About My Lips.. My Lips .. My Giant Freakin' Lips..

I didn't have a chance. My gene's had big lips. Hey, my dad's name is Gene. But he wasn't the only big-lipped one. My mother, the Irish one. Yes, she puts red lipstick on, still. Glad she doesn't read this stuff. To my little sister Lori: I'm telling you...don't print this out!

Finally, after years and years my lips are in style. My eyebrows went out of style (Brook Shield's 1990) but my lips have been just right for only about 6 or 7 years. Why were they so big when everyone else had little Tinkerbell lips? Was it to keep me out of trouble or what? This isn't a new observation. I was so overwhelmed when I first heard that someone increased their lips with stuff (?) to make their lips BIGGER!

I was born with very large lips. I knew I could scream louder, but other than that, I didn't think I was that much different than anyone else. I was in the 4th grade when I saw my school picture that I noticed that I had big, puffy lips in my school picture. My mom told me my lips were chapped and yes, that made sense. The east wind blows at the beginning of school which equals very chapped lips and I also seemed to get poison oak on my face in the fall. You know Poison Oak is just sticks ... I always got FATTER lips when I had poison oak and my lips were swollen from a running through the "sticks". HO, HO, HO, I couldn't laugh, my lips would crack! This began my inferior-complex.

Okay this is going to be a long post. You know when you ask me what time it is, I'll tell you how-to-build-a clock-type of person!

My lips have a good-side. When I was little I could pout better than anyone! I could look like the sad kitty on the Shrek movie and always get my way. I could do kissy-face better and I could even point with my lips, when my hands were busy.

Seventh grade was horrible. Thin, thin lips were in. Actually, for the next five years thin lips were in. I hated my fat lips. All my friends called me: "liver-lips" and "fishy-lips" Did I outline them? Are you kidding? I put on white lipstick on them constantly to try and have "no lips". My mom told me later that the white lipstick just made them look bigger and she meant better because she was okay with her large lips, but mostly...she didn't want to freak- me - out by saying I was emphasizing them. Thank you. I would look in the mirror with the horror of my five daughters .. if they noticed a pimple on their chin. ACCCCKKK! They all were growing a new nose or chin! How could they dare complain? Their stupid pimples went away. My lips were here, still.

As you are reading this you are thinking, I know, "Poor girl..." But you don't understand my lips were dang targets. Dogs would jump-up to lick my face and knock me in the lips. I went to the Junior Prom, with a fat, big, purple top lip. Slammed doors on them, and they got so sunburned because they were sooooo out there.

Target kissy lips. Before I was married a lot of guys kissed me. Yes, I'll confess but I didn't kiss them. I was so afraid of my lips feeling all squishy and fishy. I should be thankful my lips didn't get me in trouble. I was so self-conscious my lips, so I should just thank my lips for not giving me a bad reputation.

Some interesting side notes: Does everyone open their lips to put mascara on or am I the only one? Why do I do this? Why when feeding a baby I purse or pucker my lips to help the babies suck. I do that even feeding baby lambs or the baby goat kids. I know my lips are going to stay like that, all wrinkly. Oh my gosh, big, fat, wrinkled-up lips! Hope they don't sag.

Not too long ago a big, yearling Santa Cruz (growing horns) ram lamb was running past me. I knelt down in the wrong predator position and the dang lamb. Well, I remember seeing flying white fluff that was hard as a boulder hit my lips and nose. My front teeth went through my fat lips. I also had a broken nose and it was a technical knock-out. I was found wandering around in the front of our house, seeing stars. Yes, that describes the lamb "knocking the daylights out of me." I was in the night with the stars. "COAL-COCKED!"

Recently, I have had face cancer. A lot of it on my lips. PEOPLE WEAR SUNSCREEN AND DON'T DO TANNING BEDS, YOU'LL BE VERY SORRY!!!! The medication was strong and my lips swelled to more than 3X normal size. My doctor told me that there won't be scars because lips don't scar. Well, he's right about the outside, but I still have fatter lips because of the ram lamb. The no scaring on my lips makes me want to give away lots of kisses of appreciation.

"I've grown accustomed to my face" (My Fair Lady song) Well, except for now I'm a putty knife while my scars fade. I can still use my pout, point without hands, smile a lot and give kisses to my grandchildren. BTW Don't use "puffer lip-stick" when kissing babies. You'll leave a mark! Babies must be scared of me... Old lady with "big fishy lips" and glasses comin' at me. Reminds me of Ernest P. Worrell, or Jim Varney dressed as a woman. Do you remember his character Auntie Nelda? You NEED to "You Tube" it. That's so funny, I make myself laugh.

***Added Feb. 12, 2009. These are my daughter's lips, she is the middle child and has two young children. She has the hives and has had them for two months or more. Something she is allergic is making the hives and her lips are huge. She doesn't have these lips normally. I FEEL her pain. Hope the new doctor makes the lips and the freakin' hives "GO AWAY!!" I love you and your mom is rooting for you. "YOU CAN DO IT" from some random Adam Sandler movie.

Big Lips, Boby O'Connor Wellman, DNA, Gene Wellman, and Susan Wellman Lazenby

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Quirky Sayings In Real Life

Exercise For Real Life....

The doctor told me "Physical exercise is good for you."
I know that I should do it,

but my body is out of shape,

so I have worked out this easy daily program
I can do anywhere:
Beat around the bush.
Jump to conclusions.
Climb the walls.
Wade through paperwork.
Drag my heels.
Push my luck.
Make mountains out of mole hills.
Hit the nail on the head.
Bend over backwards.
Jump on the band wagon.
Balance the books.
Run around in circles.
Toot my own horn.
Climb the ladder of success.
Pull out the stops.
Add fuel to the fire.
Open a can of worms.
Put my foot in my mouth.
Start the ball rolling.
Go over the edge.
Pick up the pieces.
Whew! What a workout!

I stole this from my daughter, Bree.
She's so fun!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Around The Corner and Something Little Makes Our Lives Better

Kenna is getting better all the time, the metal bat seemed to do so much but I really believe faith, prayer, and most of all a Priesthood Blessing that she received from her Uncle Dave before she went to the hospital. She was blessed to only has some black eyes to heal. This bruising on her face was taken a couple days ago and she's so much better, even today. Kenna and her family went to Disneyland today and the day after she got the back-swing, her personality was back happy and cute. She just wondered who the girl in the mirror was. We are throwing away the bat and the kids are going to be very, very careful on their swinging practice. The second picture is before the bat incident.

It makes me so happy to see baby lambs and especially when Kiely does the delivery. She was beside herself. She actually saved a stuck baby and then gagged like crazy when she had to fling the "snotty bubbles" there seemed a lot more than usual....more than there were babies. We were really afraid of five lambs coming from just this one sheep. Anne, the mother, never comes into milk so we are busy feeding and hugging baby lambs. Grandchildren and lambs are a precious site.

Our dog "Little" is the protector, mother. She's never had a puppy-litter and the baby lambs and goats have always been hers. We have other dogs and it was amazing to see her protect the triplets. I've never seen her bite another dog until one attached its teeth to one the lamb's leg. You don't bring out the bear in Little. The other dogs stayed far away after that. "Little, the alpha female."

And then there's the kid. The red-headed leprechaun that just turned 2. The hat is not his hair, but it seems our red-headed grandchildren, just seem to have personalities that are unequal to the rest of the clan. They are major hams. Jaxon will dress himself in the most outrageous outfits, ever! Jaxon climbs every curtain, bookcase, and is constantly working his way to standing on any table and that's just his style. He's all boy with his trucks, cowboy hats, and the little bike he rides all through the house. Jaxon thinks his bike is a motorcycle and he's going to Texas.

My spirits were so lifted when Kiely came home from school and told us about her dancing class. She is doing great! Someone told her and this is not all of it, that they thought she taught tap because she looked so happy dancing. (not to mention, fast) We are so blessed by her performances on our living room floor. I honestly think I will never redo the floor because she's been tapping on them since she was 3. Actually, I have a video of her dancing on her first birthday to Milli Vanilli and she's really good! Everywhere she taps she pops paint off our wooden floor. I look at her happy dance spots and think I want to save this. I know she loves her horse, the menagerie that we have, and dance. She gave dance up for one year and this has been an re-awakening of something she loved and was missing in her life. Kiely sleeps now.

Baby Lambs, Black Eyes, Funky Kid, Loving Tapping Daughter

Sunday, February 1, 2009

I Was A Disaster Waiting To Happen, Don't Hold It In

Simply, today-- I felt the Spirit in Relief Society to bear my testimony. I am in Young Women and really the chance to be in Relief Society is a special occasion for me. It's been years since I have been able to make the testimony part of R.S. and I felt like I needed to stand. I couldn't move my feet, so I just stood. I think I mostly just said how I felt, as in the post below, minus the alligators. I gave no details, but I stopped talking when the Spirit was so strong it burned deeply in my heart and all of my chest, that I started to cry. That experience was the most, I can't exactly define it.... but it was a fiery, burning in my heart to comfort me. I was overwhelmed, it was real, so intense, and as odd as it sounds to person that is not LDS, it was the most comforting feeling I've ever had. I couldn't stop crying and everyone gathered around me and loved me. My sisters in Relief Society were there with compassion and love that I felt part of a sisterhood that only angels in heaven could give. I love them all so much. I think I cried hard on every shoulder.

I was very near fainting and had the most severe, sudden headache. I believe from the force of my crying and trying so completely hard to gather myself together and stop! It made my head feel like it was bursting. Dear Sister Brock gave me some chewable Tylenol and I hugged on Larin's husband and he almost carried me to the car--I completely lost my headache as I got in my FJ. I went home. I was a disaster waiting to happen. I know that there must be an acronym for it. DWTH

I've been strong...trying to not be upset in front of the little kids, the rest of my family, especially Kiely, or upset Steve. He has cried so very much.

Today was Jaxon's birthday and I was a mess after church. I'm embarrassed that I lost my composure at church in front of so many, but it was wonderful to have the sisters there to give me their love and support as well as a burning witness of the Holy Ghost. They don't know and it's not just one huge trial, it involves many things happening all at once. A convergence of unhappy situations that are way too complex to explain, especially one of the most sad.

Please all of you that visit my blog and don't even know me or my family---think of our family in your prayers.

****Added Monday, Feb. 2, 2009: I just want to let everyone know my post, last night, was not meant to mean that I'm special or in anyway deserving of all that I received. I felt so humbled by the experience that I went to my knees in thankfulness. Really... it was a reassurance to me that my Heavenly Father is really aware of each one of us and I needed that reassurance for not only me, but for all of our family. I love them all beyond absolutely anything in my life.

Love, Prayers, Sisters in Relief Society, Testimony