What's In This Blog

I created this blog for my journal. I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In this blog I keep many of the things I come across as a member of the church. I also share my experiences on the ACE Train and getting to work, my experiences in Manteca where we have lived for three years, and other things I think are noticeable.

Monday, December 31, 2012

Picture Taking Session.

For a bit more than a day we had the entire family together.  This resulted in a picture taking session.  Ty did the honors.  These are my pictures of the day, by Ty's will be much  better.

Norman Christmas Party

Party at Dianna's was 12/28 Friday after Christmas.  We had a great time with soup and salad bar.  Sheri took chicken noodle and Liz made cheese broccoli.  There was also ham and beans and clam chowder which I enjoyed.  Dianna made home made bread which I enjoyed with Gary's frozen strawberry jam.  Our family was 16 for the party with all our kids, Gary and Angie's family and Mark and Dianna's family and we had quite a crowd.  There were 27 for the gift exchange party.  Two babies did not play.  I scored a chocolate football and Tony a large jar of cheese balls.  He was torn between the two so I got the chocolate for him.  Caleb  scored a edible snake and Sheri a book.  We had fun. Tony really likes Rachel, Gary and Angie's daughter.

Christmas: Grandpa Scoresby's Visit

Grandpa Scoresby was with us for almost a week, from just after Christmas until this morning.  We were stuck on the Bay Bridge, so were about an hour late to great him, but we had a good time all the same, playing games and conversing.  Grandpa always brings a box of Idaho Potatoes.  He then is prevailed upon to help fix a Grandpa breakfast with hash browns, pancakes, scrambled eggs and bacon.

With Grandpa we had sixteen in our house.  This lead Caleb to try a tent one night.  He said he was fine until his heated socks gave out.

Caleb sleepwalking into the house
Sixteen were us five, Anthony and Charity, Ty and Tali, Jeremy, Kayla and Skylar, Mark, Liz and Elliott, Grandpa.  We were missing Sevey and Ollie, Lizzy's boys.

We prevailed on Grandpa to sing with us in church.  We sang "Guard Him, Joseph," a Sally DeFord song which has a four-part men's section.  Singing were myself, Anthony, Grandpa and Caleb, Natalia, Charity and Sheri.  Miranda played the piano.

Holiday Trip to San Francisco

Liz has never been to San Francisco, so we made the trip.  Crissy Field is much nicer than it was when we took the kids there years ago.  We went over in three vehicles.  Traffic was a killer, but we survived.  We all had picnic by the bay, and walked the bridge.  Some stayed for Pier 39 and Ghirardelli's Chocolate.

Tony at Crissy Field, then the picnic party, and then the Bridge.
Tony below the bridge

picnic party

Caleb and his nephews
some of our party

Tony liked the design of the cables

Sheri and Tony


Mark, Liz and Elliott

Jeremy, Kayla and Skylar


Thursday, December 27, 2012

Christmas Movie Night: Miracle on 34th Street

****Miracle on 34th Street (1947)  watched the black and white version, and so got the original version.  This movie presents a young single mother, Doris Walker (Maureen O' Hara)and her daughter, Susan Walker (Natalie Wood) as a mother and daughter who have the attitude of only believing in things that are real, and not in Santa Claus.  It also has a Kris Kringle (Edmund Gwenn) and a lawyer, Fred Gailey (John Payne) who defends Kris when he is being sent to an insane asylum because he insists that he is Santa Claus.  Kris Kingle is a very good Santa, and insists  it is more important for the children to be happy, than any one store to get sales.  There is a company psychiatrist at Macy's who leads the anti Santa Claus movement.  That leads them into conflict.  The case ends up in court, and there is a cute scene with the son of the District Attorney who is prosecuting the case.  The son points out his father told him who Santa Claus is.  His father is try to convince the judge to commit Kris Kringle to an asylum.  The judge is seeking some reason to accept him, as is given this when the U.S. Postal Service delivers letters to him.  Of course Doris had suggested this.  This movie talks about faith, and what faith is.  Doris and her daughter find faith in the end.  I really enjoyed Natalie Wood, and her emotions and expressions.  It is interesting the commercialization of Christmas was a theme over sixty years ago.  This movie is a classic.

***^ Miracle on 34th Street (1994)  This movie has basically the same characters and relationship.  Richard Attenborough stars as Kris Kringle and Mara Wilson as Susan Walker.  There are a couple of plot twists which keep this show interesting.  We are introduced to Kris Kringle who intervenes when a hired Santa Claus is inebriated.  Instead of a psychiatrist, the villain is a competitor shoe, with a couple employees who are trying to discredit the Santa Claus who is bringing the store he hopes to buy, back from the brink. The other interesting twist is "In God We Trust" gives the little bit the judge needs to not commit Kris.  The other is the three   requests from Susan to Saint Nick and how they come to pass.  Again a classic.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

2012 Christmas Devotional

If anyone is still seeking the true meaning of Christmas, I invite you to check out the Christmas Devotional.  President Uchtdorf talks of being good at accepting gifts, President Eyring about how special gift s can help us find peace and President Monson about finding the peace of Christmas through service, and tells the story of his old primary teacher.  The tabernacle Choir also sings.


Christmas Day 2012

I was up first, 6 a.m. and waited for everyone to gather.  Of course I had been up several times earlier.  2 a.m. I gathered the stockings, and 4 a.m. I stuffed stockings while Sheri finished wrapping.  I was also up several times fighting stuffed nostrils.  We started opening gifts a bit after 6:30.  Pretty good time as we took turns--Skylar, Tony, Caleb, Miranda, Charity, Kayla, Anthony, Jeremy, Mom, Me.  We wrapped a long time, and our course Tony would get a couple turns each time as he had the most presents.

Special gifts included remote control car for Tony, I received the book I have been wanting for a couple years, "Tell My Story, Too", Sheri got a "George Foreman" grill, Miranda a Kindle and Caleb a Levi quilt.  His drum set he got several months ago was suppose to be his Christmas.  We are also now Wii people.  So are the Halls.  Jeremy and Kayla are going to take home Caleb's old drum set.  Sheri also got them a nice knife set. We enjoyed baby Skylar and all took turns holding him.
We enjoyed Sheri's traditional cinnamon rolls for breakfast.
I slept much of the morning, but we went to the Normans for Christmas dinner.  The Jones were their guests.  The Jones came to our house last year for thanksgiving.  Their baby, almost one and a half now, is so cute.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christmas Eve 2012

Our evening started with a traditional German dish, rouladen.  Here is a recipe.
However to be honest Sheri makes hers a bit differently.  Sheri uses round steak, and she does beat it some to tenderize it.  She does roll dill pickle, quartered length wise, onion and bacon inside the round steaks.  She ties them with thread.  She then sautes them with butter.  She does not use mustard.  She cooks hers for a longer period of time, roasting them in the oven or slow roaster.   She does add beef flavoring and brown grave mix, so when they are done the gravy is already made.  I like rouladen not only for the taste of the meat, but also the gravy has a distinct flavor from the bacon and pickles.

After dinner, and clean up, we had our yearly nativity scene, with Sheri narrating and everyone taking a part.  Skylar was Baby Jesus  Tony was Joseph with a light saber staff.  Kayla was Mary. The cat and I were shepherd and lamb.  Cat did OK for a time, but angel upstairs, and camera flashing were enough for him and he ran away.  Jeremy also was a lamb.  Anthony was our angel.  We had three wise men, Charity, Miranda and Caleb.

We then had dessert and opened and put on our Christmas jammies to go see lights, but as we were tired we only went to the Manteca light castle.