Friday, July 25, 2008

Mama Mia

Princess got off early this afternoon and we went to see the obligatory Chick Flick! Well, not really twisting my arm, I love musicals, and both of us love ABBA. So we ate a Whataburger and headed over to the Hollywood 16.

We got there a little late, but found two seats together at the top of the theater. This movie was great. Not a lot of substance (no moral stories, etc), pure fluff (feel good, toe tappin dance in the aisle), but we loved every minute of it. We both hummed and tapped along with the music, laughed and there was a group of mature women in front of us that would squeal with delight. It was a great afternoon.
If you get the chance, go see it. It will make you smile.



Avoiding, that’s what I’ve been doing. Avoid blogging; avoid feeling, kind of like walking around in a daze.

I was in Chattanooga, TN this week, visiting our plant, meeting up with a gentleman that reports to me, making my presence known in the plant/office. The change did me good; it got me out of my funk. I got to see a little rain and that always perks my spirits up…guess its cause I was raised in the desert and rain came in huge waves, like August monsoon and February/March.

So, to mix things up a bit, I thought I would include some photos.

This is Sadie, begging for food from our table. Thanks to my lovely Princess and her Dad who taught Sadie that food from the table is mmmmhh good!

This is Sasha, looking for her Mama (Princess) and wondering why she was left alone!

This is my niece Mallory Kate! We took this while in Vegas and I bribed her with marshmallows to come sit with me and watch baby Einstein’s. She is full of energy and sometimes she is a little cuddly and she’ll give you hugs and smooches.

This is my family, taken after the Mom’s funeral. Back row (l to r) Bert (#5), Rich (oldest), Russell (youngest). Front row Christina (Buffy, also #4), Dad, Me (Skip – these were our nicknames for each other in high school #3) (not pictured Audrey #1 - deceased).

Taken 2 July 2008
Standing (l to r) Me, RL (Berts #2), Aunt Aurella (Mom's only surviving sister), BJ (Bert's #1), Bert, Russell, Justin (Christina's #1), Kelley (Bert's #3), Nichole (Rich's #1), Richard III (Rich's #2), Kyle (Christina's #2), Tanner (Christina's #3), Shane (Christina's hubby), Rich
Sitting (l to r) Princess (mine), Christina, Dad, Dawn (Rich's), Alisa holding Mallory (Bert's and Bert's #4).

Just a side note, Alisa was the only smart woman there, she had taken off her heels to feel more comfortable. Also, notice, my tie coordinates with Princesses dress!

I'm doing better each day - I still struggle with the "funk" now and then, but I took yesterday and today off to catch up on some things and just relax. As far as becoming normal - heck, it hasn't happened yet, so don't hold your breath!


Sunday, July 20, 2008


That's how I am feeling. I was in a funk on Friday night in the airport in Houston. Blue, I still am. I was feeling sorry for myself (that's how it always is right?), for the loss of my best friend. So I decided to cheer myself up. I called Princess.

Princess was less than talkative. She was busy doing things around the house, her answers to my questions were short or one worded. No luck there.

So I called my sister Christy. She was busy, preoccupied working on a template, her answers too were short or one worded. Two strikes.

I then called Bert. He always likes to talk, but alas, it was not to be. He was on the other line and asked me if it would be OK if he called me back. I said sure. Well when he called back I was on the plane from Houston to Waco. Three strikes.

I didn't call Rich, he's usually riding his horse or roping or something cowboyish, and Russell works a lot of swing shifts so I didn't call him either. Instead, I sat in the airport with tears escaping down my face wallowing in self pity. It was, I was, pathetic.

Everyone says that the death of a parent is hard, I thought I was prepared. Mom had been so sick and in so much pain that I knew that her passing would be a blessing for her, and for my Dad who had worried so much for her these past five years. I'm not prepared. I made it through the funeral, put on my smile, stopped crying when Dad said to stop, and put on the brave face. I'm still doing that. But it's painful, my Mom is my best friend. We had so much in common, movies, TV, music, books, sense of humor. My brothers and sisters all said I was Mom's favorite. They were wrong, she IS MY FAVORITE! That is the difference.

Oh, I know that I'm whining, full of self pity, and down right wanting, no needing to, requiring that I get through these feelings in my schedule and put my life back on track. Well I can't. I just figured that out this morning at Church. I have to heal. It's gonna be a long road for this Mama's boy.

Saturday, July 12, 2008


Mom's service was beautiful.  Probably the longest funeral service I've sat through in my whole life, but it was a beautiful tribute to a loving Mother, Sister, Wife, Aunt, and Grandmother.

Dad had all of us kids line up by age in the Relief Society room to greet and thank all the people that came to pay their respects.  Aunt Aurella was next to Mom, fitting for sisters to be next to each other.  Think of it as a receiving line (like for a wedding), so that we could personally thank everyone.  We were warned not to cry, he said "No tears in this line, no matter what.  Your Mom is at peace, we are happy for her and I want you kids to emulate that and to show that Joy on your face".  It was hard, and we would tell people that came through crying, "no tears, she is in peace, be happy for her".

My Uncle Gary gave the family prayer, then we said our goodbyes to Mom.  Rich and Dawn and their son Richie, Christy and her son Kyle, Bert and Alisa, Russell, and Princess and I, all left to sing a prelude as Mom was brought into the Chapel.  We sang "I Know that My Redeemer Lives", one of Mom's favorite Hymns.  Aunt Aurella gave the invocation.  My younger cousin Eric Price, Bishop of his Ward, conducted the service.  

Christina gave the Eulogy, and did a superb job.  Then Russell spoke.  My how my littlest brother has grown and matured into a fine man.  The grand kids then sang "Families can be Together Forever" with dry eyes, and with smiles.  They did a good job.  Bert spoke next.  He reminds me of Dad.  The way he speaks, his hand motions, even his facial movements, all scream Dad.  I spoke next, a few tears, told everyone in the Congregation that I was no longer "Jimmy", but had graduated to Jim and they should respect that.  Us kids again sang, this time "How Great Thou Art".  Then Dad's Bishop from Hurricane spoke, then Eric concluded.  Rich said the closing prayer, the Congregation sang "God Be With You 'Till We Meet Again".  All in all about an hour forty minutes long.

We had a great visit with family at the luncheon, then we helped the Relief Society clean up the Cultural Hall, and headed to Christina's to change, then it was home for a nap.

My days are good, peppered with some tear time, when I let the emotions get a hold of me, and then I remember Mom's last conversation with me "Stop Crying.  Don't cry for me".  Well Mom, I'm crying for me, cause I am selfish and I miss you.

Dad is doing good, we spoke for about 30 minutes today.  I am grateful he took the time to develop in me a friendship when I was an awkward 14 year old going through the awful emotional stress of teenage strife.

For you dear readers, I thank you.  For your friendship, for your love, and for your prayers.  Both Princess and I are blessed to have you in our lives.


Blame Canada

Yep, it even sounds like Southpark in my head when I say it.

So Princess and I arrived home on Sunday around 9:30 PM, unloaded the car and then crashed into our own bed for the first time in two weeks.

Monday I worked from the plant and Monday night, the Keller's brought over a scrumptious dinner even after I had threatened Andrea and Brandon both (It was extremely good and we appreciate the thought behind it).

Tuesday, I flew to Canada, Northbay to be exact, about a one hour flight north of Toronto.  In Toronto, I met "R" from my group, and we drove two hours farther north to a small town, called New Liskeard.  The next morning, we crossed over into Quebec and drove to the vendor's site for the audit.   Afterwards, we drove back to Northbay, stayed the night, and flew into Toronto where we were picked up by the same vendor's salesperson to audit another site about an hour and a half away.

Friday I flew home, did some yard work - not much, mainly pulling weeds, etc, and then Princess and I had a quiet night, eating poached eggs, bacon and toast.  It was deeeelish!  Today we've been doing chores, ran a couple errands and are about to have homemade tacos for dinner, and then I'm going to prep my Sunday School Lesson for tomorrow.

Next week, I'm off to Georgia and Tennessee for team meetings.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008


Last night we had the viewing for Mom. She looked so beautiful. Her daughter and daughters-in-law, along with Mom's only surviving sibling, dressed and prepared her for the funeral. I was there too. I was there to fulfill a promise made to Mom 14 years earlier when my older sister had passed away. It was a blessing that I was there. After we finished dressing Mom, my sister, Christina, Princess, and Aunt Aurella set to task to apply her makeup. They did a great job, she looked so good - and I believe it was because they used her very own makeup and not the mortuaries product. Then Aunt Aurella did Mom's hair, just like Mom did in life. The flowers were beautiful and filled the room, it was amazing.

The three and a half hour viewing was great, so many faces I hadn't seen in a long time. Many remarked how beautiful and peaceful Mom looked, and I heartily agreed.

Today will mark the longest funeral in the history of mankind. Mom had mapped out her funeral, three musical numbers (us kids are doing two, the grandkids are doing one), four speakers (Christina, Russell, Bert, and me), two Bishop's from Hurricane are speaking, and then the final remarks by my cousin, the Bishop conducting. I'm taking snacks and a Big Gulp. I'm gonna need'em! And I'm bringing my stock in Kleenex with me. I'm a Big BOOB with capitol letters - and I'm a Mommas boy, so this is gonna be hard.

Thank you again for all your comments, your phone calls, your e-mails. I am thankful for my membership, testimony and faith. I know that Mom is in a better place. I know that Heavenly Father lives and loves us. I am thankful for His son, Jesus Christ, whose atoning sacrifice makes it possible for us to return to live in their presence. I am most grateful for Princess, a loving wife and best friend. Again, thanks for all your support and for your prayers. Keep them coming, I gonna need them today.