Sunday, November 29, 2009

Giving Thanks and all that...

Thanksgiving is the best. I love all the holidays (any excuse to eat and sleep in is fine by me), but Thanksgiving rules. Perhaps that's because I'm not the mom or hostess so it's a low stress time for me. I love all the rituals (really, do we have to have little nut cups with our names on them?), the time with family, and of course, the food.

We rarely get together for Thanksgiving as an entire family. Since both of my parents have passed away, the question of where to go for Thanksgiving is ever present. For many years my sister Linnea and I would rotate among family members. My older siblings are now grandparents (what the heck!), so there are always fun, noisy kids around.

In recent years, I have joined my sister and her family in Logan. The reason for this is simple (no, Loene and Alan, it's not because I love Annette the most): gluten-free stuffing, gravy, rolls and pies! Celiac disease really puts a damper on the holiday feasting, but since 6 out of 9 in my sister's family are fellow Celiac-kers, my sister cooks up a fabulous gluten-free feast. This year my nephew, his wife and their 3 girls also joined us. Casey actually made the pies and did a great job with the gluten-free crusts. It was a fun day-beautiful weather in Logan.

Another thing that made this a special holiday was a special man in my life, Sammy. Now before you get all excited, Sammy is my friend's shitzu. I got to be his foster parent for a week. He is a smart little soul; very loving and snuggly. It was fun to have him around. Sometime I'll get a dog, but for now I'm better off just being a once-in-a-while parent.

That's it. Lots to be grateful for!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Stampin Up! Down Under!

I was given the most amazing opportunity last month. I spent a week with the wonderful Australian demonstrators and two of the Australian Stampin' Up! employees.

I flew into Sydney. Unfortunately, my luggage wasn't in the mood to travel, so it remained in Los Angeles. By the time we got things documented, I had missed my flight to Melbourne. I arrived there Friday afternoon (love Melbourne!) and met up with Aaron and Hollie who work for SU Australia. We walked and walked and walked to a yummy Thai place, then I crashed.

Still no luggage, so I presented some stamping techniques using my hotel amenities kit-the shower cap, nail file, q-tips, etc. It was fun and the event attendees were super sweet to me. My luggage showed up around 7 pm.

Sunday I flew to Hobart in Tasmania. I love to say that. Who gets to say they flew to Tasmania for work? I enjoyed several days on my own, then Aaron and Hollie joined me. Our Hobart event went well. It was great to be able to really stamp!

I ended my trip in Perth, where we held an event for 200 attendees. I really enjoy Perth and the demos there. For some reason it feels like home to me. We ate some amazing Indian food that night then Aaron flew to Syndey. Hollie left in the early afternoon the next day and I didn't fly out 'til 11:00 pm, so I was grateful when Ngaire Anderson called to see if I'd like to take a field trip. She brought her two kids and we went to a memorial park (cemetery) where kangaroos just roam around. There were lots of mamas with joeys. It was so cute! After that we went to Hillary's on the Indian Ocean and ate some fish and chips. Ngaire's kids are darling. They created a great memory for me to take on my journey home.

Getting home was horrible. A major delay in leaving Sydney (after an all-nighter to get there from Perth) resulted in further delays in the LA. I was plumb tuckered out by the time I landed in Salt Lake!

My darling friend Cathi brought me over dinner, then I crashed around 8 p.m. and slept until 11 a.m. the next day.

New friends, fun stamping, great food. What's better than that?

Saying Goodbye to a Dear Friend

I never intended to wait this long to post, and I was ready to report on Australia...but last Saturday I got a text from my dear friend Mary telling me her husband, Neil, was in critical condition at the hospital due to the H1N1 virus. After stuggling for days, Neil passed away last Wednesday night.

I am so sad for Mary and her kids. I'm sad for me. Neil has taken fabulous care of my yard for two summers. I will miss his attention to detail and pride in what he did. I will miss his dependability and stability. Neil was always there and now he isn't.

I am sad.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Christmas (Jingle) in October

Christmas Jingle Simply Scrappin' Cards
I'll admit it---I love Christmas anytime. So, last weekend when I had some time to play, I created 36 cards out of one of Stampin' Up's! Simply Scrappin' kits. I had so much fun trying to just use the materials in the kit--I didn't even use adhesive! I still have all six sheets of beautiful designer series paper I can use for other Christmas projects. Pretty stoked about this. I think I might even be motivated to email my once-a-year card making friends and get a girls' night out going!

I do love a nice long weekend to create and refill my bucket!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009


I am beginning my day with an icy glass of ginger ale. It's 6:30 AM, 34 degrees outside, I bailed on my work out friend (sorry Cathers, who pulls a muscle during sleep? It's beyond me! But I digress...), should be tidying the house a little after last weekend's stamping marathon, but all I can think about is my ginger ale!

Can I explain? I am all about immediate gratification. Fast food, fast internet, tv on demand, crash get the picture. So, it's surprising that I am enjoying this ginger ale after weeks of anticipating it, days of shopping for it, and beginning to make it last night at 7:30 PM. Yes, I said make it.

My friend Donna found a recipe for ginger ale and surprised me with some a couple of months ago. I wasn't home, so she left it in my fridge with a note about how to assemble the perfect glass. I can't explain how delicious that glass of ginger ale was. It was a party in my mouth. The sweet, tangy ginger with a hint of lime both surprised me and made sense to my taste buds. Since then, I have been planning to make my own. I finally bought the ingredients, then realized I'd left the recipe on my computer at work. Arghh!

Gratification delayed.

After peeling the ginger and adding it to a simple syrup, I had to wait for the concoction to cooto room temperature. By then it was too late to sip.

Apparently it's never too early to sip! I'm wrapped in a blanket watching the wind blow while I drink this cool, sweet, bubbly treasure.

I recently heard you should start every day with a win.

I won!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

A Kick in the Rear

My darling friend, Cathi, is a church mentor for a group of teenage girls. A week or two ago, she talked to them about life and how to Bee happy. She taught them: Bee Your Best Self, seek for Balance and have a Plan Bee. Then she challenged them to set goals for the next two weeks to help them “bee”gin the process (sorry, I couldn’t resist :)).

Last Friday she surprised me by giving me a folder like she gave her girls! Along with the folder, she gave us a darling SU treat box with things to help us track and achieve our goals. Here’s a picture of my goodies.

Isn’t that a fun idea! I will confess I needed a kick in the rear to get me goal setting and self improving—and I’m glad it was in the form of a gift in a bag.

Monday, September 28, 2009


I attended a family funeral on Saturday. As I listened to family and friends honor my cousin, I was impressed by the impact of one life on the world. Does that sound lofty?

Each of us has such power! Our small lives aren’t. Small that is. There are countless people whose lives intersect ours every day.

Several years ago I began to notice a yellow truck on my drive to work. It was particularly remarkable because, well, it was yellow. Day after day I would see that yellow truck. I began to wonder about yellow truck’s driver. Where did he go every day? Was he a teacher? A father? Did he wonder about me (I doubt it because my Honda is pretty run-of-the-mill silver)? One day the yellow truck was gone. I wondered if yellow truck’s driver bought a new truck or moved to Italy. Sometimes I still wonder.

I might not have a spouse or children running around, but I’m really trying to be a spot of light in the world. If enough of us do that, we can and will make a difference.

Wow! Quite philosophical for a Monday, eh?

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Founder's Circle (Fun in the Sun)

The Gathering Place-waiting for demos to join the fun!

I returned from Founder's on Sunday morning and dropped into bed for 7 hours. 7! I was sooo very tired. It's a great event-a true privilege to be able to attend and help KelleeSue and her amazing team.

Here are some of my highlights:

Lynsay Mahon and Cori Hancock-Check out that concentration!

Our Lovely MDS Lab
1) Teaching MDS with Cori. The pointer finger and naughty finger. That cute kid (who does he belong to, anyway?) flying down the slide. Making the same scrapbook page over and over (and over) again. I'm a pro at that page now! Once, knowing something Cori didn't know-the rest of the time she totally schooled me.
2) Speaking at the final dinner. The weather was quite dramatic, but The Ledges golf course was beautiful. The demonstrators did a butterfly release, we ate yummy food and took tons of photos. I got to share the story of my butterfly sister Linnea. It was a tender night.
3) Meeting the Rising Stars and hearing their stories. I sooo hope they continue to be successful. What neat ladies!
4) Seeing demo friends again.

Me with Tami White. Aren't we cute?

5) Making new demo friends.

Jackie Ross and Sharon Armstrong peeking through the decor.

6) Laughing with (sometimes at) KelleeSue's team.

7) Hearing the great ideas at the business share.

8) Watching over 115 ladies swap.

9) Joining a few demos for dinner. I went to Paula's restaurant with Judy Garza, Ruth Bingle, Becky Kareck, Angie Juda and Esther Boyle. It was soo great to visit and learn more about them. The food was just okay, but the company was four star!

10) Tying lots and lots of knots!

I dare say a great time was had by all. I also dare say some of us need a break from all this fun!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Cincinnati Regional

Donna and Shelli doing a great pose after Shannon taught us some tips

Shannon looking fabulous

The regional in Cincinnati was so much fun! I am always better after spending time with demonstrators and Stampin' Up! employees. I was pleased that I had the energy needed to support my amazing team of facilitators. They really rocked it. I was sooo happy with the stamping and business content! We arrived around 8 p.m. on Wednesday and just had a bite to eat at the hotel. The next morning was deliciously lazy-we met at 11:00 for lunch and to head to the convention center to get set up for rehearsals. Lunch was at Chipotle. We hit it just right because right after we sat down the line went out the door! The rest of the day was all about getting ready for the seminar. Rehearsals went well and set up was a breeze. That night we ate at a brewery next to Chipotle that had the yummiest food.

Lisa the Popester

Friday and Saturday were a blur of Stampin' Up! regional fun-I swapped, smiled, hung up demonstrator swaps on the display boards, gave feedback to my team, and got caught up with Jill.

Bonnie and the great facilitators

We flew home early Sunday and I napped and then went to bed early. I love my own little bed!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Big Day #2

Hemolytic anemia. Whew! The bone marrow biopsy was 100% clean and clear. No sign of cancer; no sign of anything extraordinary. The doc thinks my body got confused because of either a virus or some medication (could have been either) and began to treat my red blood cells like an infection. My immune system is working overtime to kill off those pesky red blood cells faster than I can store them, making me anemic and tired. We did more blood work and will know Thursday for sure if this is the real deal. The treatment is steroids and folic acid. I can handle that. I had to use Prednisone once before for about a week and nearly went out of my mind but, considering the alternative, I'm feeling quite positive about this! If you're like me and get curious about this kind of stuff, medline has a great explanation.

It was a nice weekend-I had some Bonnie time, some Landon & Parker time, some stamping time, some Tamsin, Sam & Emma time, and some family time for Annette's birthday. Still, at the back of it all was the upcoming doctor's appointment. My two sisters joined me for the news and my brother gave me a great blessing yesterday.

I feel such relief-and such hope that I can begin to get my energy back.

One thing-you sure realize how many people love, support and care when you go through a scare like this. I am overwhelmed by the wonderful friends and family I have. Truly blessed.


Thursday, September 3, 2009

Waiting for the Phone to Ring...

...Just like in high school when I was sooo hoping for a call from the totally great guy in Biology. Only this time it's waiting for Dr. Litton to call. I'm pretty sure he told me that he'd call if the results came in on Thursday. Problem is I was at the beginning of the Versed injection, so I may have been in lala land.

He's not going to call, is he? It's 9:30. He's gone home. He doesn't work on Fridays, Monday is a holiday. So, I guess it's wait until the 12:20 scheduled appointment on Tuesday.

My mind just went to a dark place. Did the biopsy come in but he didn't call because there's something wrong?

Yikes. I am now going to self-medicate with some diet root beer and air popped popcorn. Wow, that sounds rather lame in the self-medicating arena. Perhaps I should throw in some chocolate.


Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Big Day #1

It feels like forever since last Monday when this bone marrow biopsy was ordered. I have lived 7 different lives since then. Emotional roller coaster seems to be an understatement. I'm off to the hospital in a few hours. I feel great. Calm. Ready for some answers. The procedure itself doesn't concern me at all. Perhaps ignorance is bliss?

Anyway, that's how I feel.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Conversation with an 8 year old

My favorite 8 year old, Parker, now has an email account. Here's our first interaction:

Hello Parker,
How are you today? Did you have fun
playing with PJ and the kids yesterday? Do you have any homework from school?
What is your teacher like? Have you made any new friends?

I'm so glad
you have an email address! I will write to you, okay?


Thanks for email Bonnie. I do have new friends.I did have fun with PJ
and his brother's.


It made me smile, thus qualifying it as a needed post on ye olde blog.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Freak Out!

It's Friday night at around 8:30 and I'm typing this as I listen to a variety of 80's disco songs loaded on my i-pod by my music savvy friend Anita. It's rather ironic because I am indeed freaking out right now. I have fought against it since Monday at about 1:17 p.m. when I met with a specialist following several months of feeling run down and fighting off one sinus infection, fever, or sore throat after another. I ended up going to an InstaCare the Monday of convention. My blood work showed I was anemic, so I began taking mega doses of iron and went to my regular doc for a follow up. He did blood work and told me he thought I was having a reaction to the drug I was on for the silly (in my opinion, I know it's serious to those who truly suffer from it) Restless Leg Syndrome. He told me to slowly take myself off the drug and come in for a repeat blood test the following week. He also put me on a strong antibiotic (my third in 24 days). The repeat blood test was still off, but showed I actually had too much iron in my system-so I went off the iron and was scheduled to meet with a hematologist to talk about what was going on. Here's where the first freak began: "Utah Cancer Specialists; How can I help you?" What? I thought I had the wrong number. Deep breath.

Thus began the beginning of my long waits. One week to meet with the specialist. Three hours for the appointment. Another blood test just to make sure things were still off. Talking to the doc, okay, listening to him explain the reasons for anemia and telling me the story my blood is telling him indicates a blood marrow disorder. Well, doesn't that sound nice! Knowing I would Google it anyway, he spoke frankly about things like leukemia, lymphoma...and my mind kind of closed up. It was reassuring to hear him lay it all out and explain we should begin by doing a bone marrow biopsy to start with, it may be he's wrong and this is some other issue with my colon, kidneys, or liver, but we might as well know what we're dealing with, I should be able to get a biopsy done this week and have results within two days. Okay. It's Monday, so if I have the test tomorrow I'll know by Friday. I can handle that. What? Nursing shortage, will call later with a biopsy time, nice person on phone telling me the biopsy will be Tuesday, Sept 1 (Sept 1? Isn't it still Aug 5? What the heck!) and since the test is in the afternoon, the results won't be guaranteed until Friday Sept 4 and the doc doesn't work Fridays oh and Monday is a holiday so could I come back for the results on Tuesday, Sept 8th? I heard myself say sure. Call my team, call my sisters, call my friends...

Put on a happy face. All will be well. Work is a blessing. Loving family, great friends. Prayers, love, concern, phone calls. When will it be normal again? Speaking of normal, what about this itching? I feel tired. Is that from lack of sleep (the voices of darkness seek me out each night), from the anxiety of not knowing, or from something more sinister?

So tonight I'm being obedient to the i-pod.

Ahh, Freak Out.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Stampin' Up! Convention

Ahh, Convention! I have sufficiently recovered to hit the highlights of the week. I love SU's annual convention. As a demonstrator, I always get tons of ideas and feel rejuvenated and revved up. As an employee, I get to reconnect with demo friends, make new demo and employee friends, and watch my team be simply amazing!

I was thrilled to have some time with Jacque Craig (my soul twin in Hawaii). I met her last year at Founder's Circle and we found out we have many things in common. While I don't get much face time with her, she's a familiar friend already. Know what I mean-someone you feel like you've known forever?

I can't even begin to mention names of other demonstrators-I know I would forget someone! When I close my eyes I see and feel a sea of smiles, hugs, quick visits and affirmations. I am amazed at how many of these wonderful women truly impact my life. They probably have no idea how much I look forward to even the briefest of moments with them. It might even be pathetic in a 'you don't have a life' sort of way-but I truly feel blessed to be around them.
I met some new demo friends and look forward to sharing gluten free recipes with them! Bring it on, ladies!

As for connecting with employees, I love to visit with Paula Hogan and Pam Harbin at our events. Seems I don't get enough time with them-so just eating a meal together reminds me of their great personalities and talents. I try to eat with people I don't normally work with just to give me a chance to get to know other people better.

My team (Amanda, Holly, Mark, Carrie, Shannon & Donna) was amazing! Amanda and Holly were mostly behind the scenes, but their support made the breakout classes go smoothly. Mark stepped in for Ben at the last minute and did a great job interviewing Lisa Fast. He's a terrific guy and I like seeing him get a chance to present. Donna's class with Missy Shipman was so polished! They worked together very well and Donna really helped Missy to shine. It was informative and motivating. Shannon had a big challenge to coordinate everything Ruth, Joan and Christina needed for demo theater-and she presented some fun ideas herself! The three demo presenters really benefited from Shannon's dedication. I was glad she also got some time to stamp on stage and have fun doing it. She's an amazingly dedicated gypsy! Sweet, talented Carrie was my convention lead-so she took care of sooooo many details in preparation for the event-then she researched and presented a great break out class and stamped on main stage! Wow-what a lot to juggle. She came through like the professional she is. Love her to death.

I also got to present at the last general session. My oldest sister Loene and my two darling friends Anita and Cathi came to watch. It was so much fun to stamp for the demonstrators. What a rush! I had a fun ending to the presentation-Jill Kocherhans and I sang a couple of years ago at an NBA ball game (such an amazing experience) and I tricked her into thinking Anita needed us to sing at a Ute event the week after convention. We rehearsed quite a bit the weeks prior, then on Friday right after Spencer finished singing, Jill said "You and I should sing sometime," and I said, "Oh, we will!" Then I explained that we were really singing together the next day and she cried because she was so touched and excited. I don't know why, but I wanted it to be a surprise. I hope our Canadian demos understood and didn't feel slighted. A demo posted the song on YouTube, so here it is!

All in all it was a great week. I wasn't feeling 100%, but I loved every minute of it.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Sister Party

Annette, hanging up some Decor Elements. She's good!

Tamsin, Katie and Annette during our Facial Fiesta! Aren't they glowing?

Loene, Jennifer, Ava, Annette, Katie, Tamsin, Emma

I love a Sister Party. I grew up with three older sisters, Loene, Annette and Linnea. Oh, I have one older brother, but that's an entry for another time. Anyway, I shared a room with Linnea, so we were always buddies. Being just two years older than I, she was wise and very street smart in my eyes. Loene and Annette shared a room also. Theirs was a mysterious lair with teenage girl stuff that I both feared and envied. I'll spend more time on the sibs later-this is all about Sister Parties.

We began Sister Parties by taking short trips together. Now we simply take advantage of any long weekend and put it to good use. A Sister Party for us entails a whole lot of nothing. No schedule, no expectations, no obligations. We read, sleep, eat, watch movies, shop, laugh, and repeat. Not all components have to be present-some Sister Parties are heavy on the reading and light on the shopping. Others are full of sleep with the occasional outing just to breathe air outside of the house.

Oh, I should also explain you don't have to be a sister to join a Sister Party. Many years ago after my sister Linnea died (another blog for another day), we invited my brother Alan to join us. He pretended to have fun, then asked that next time we had a sister party maybe he could just come to the eating part. Funny, funny Alan! Loene's sister-in-law has partied with us; so has Annette's twenty something son. Oddly enough, outliers tend to only attend one party. Hmmm. Most notably, the sister party includes nieces. The most consistent non-sister attendee is my niece Tamsin. She became an honorary sister after Linnea moved to the great Sister Party in the sky.

This particular Sister Party included Annette, her daughters Tamsin and Katie, Tamsin's daughter Emma and, for one fun afternoon, my sister Loene, her daughter Jennifer and granddaughter Ava. We did pedicures, manicures, facials (thanks to Cathi-yay for Cathi), read, shopped, saw the newest Harry Potter movie, went out to breakfast for a rather pathetic gluten free meal at Marie Callenders (they've changed their menu-no more yummy cheese and bacon laden hash browns-dang!), watched So You Think You Can Dance, spent an entire afternoon running errands that resulted in one failed attempt after another to find a perfect gift for Emma's upcoming second birthday, rented some shows On Demand, and just enjoyed being together. The gang is staying for church today-a real treat-before heading out. It's been a great weekend and I'll miss the noise and bustle of family after they leave.

Friday, July 10, 2009

I can't believe I'm doing this!

I decided to see how hard it would be to get a blog going. Hmm, not hard at all! I suspect keeping it up will be the challenge. I'm not too worried-who in the world is going to actually want to read the goings on in my life? Nevertheless (fun word to use!), I'm doing it.

So, what do you want to know? I'm currently reading Fatally Flaky (Diane Mott Davidson). I like the series-she's not the best writer in the world-but she's just right for a light read.

Hmm. I've learned to not make fun of syndromes I hear about on TV. Turns out I have Restless Leg Syndrome. I've made so much fun of those commercials! Oh well, now I have an excuse on those days I feel draggy.

I've recently joined Facebook and Goodreads. I must be growing up, huh? Just wanted to see what the fuss was about. Seems to be my pattern of behavior. I've learned not to make fun of fashion because about the time something (ponchos for example) goes out of style I decide to get on the bandwagon. Blogs are probably on their way out too-now that I've joined the hullabaloo.