28 April 2010

You Have Brains In Your Head

FIVE cousins graduate from Brigham Young University
on the same day! Mark and Spencer from the Rowan side.
Chandler and Karen (husband and wife) from the Hyer
side. Anne Marie riding both sides of the family fence!

You have brains in your head.
You have feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself in any direction you choose.
You're on your own.
And you know what you know.
You are the guy who'll decide where to go.
Dr. Seuss

It is indeed ironic that we spend our school days
yearning to graduate and our remaining days
waxing nostalgic about our school days.
Isabel Waxman

Wow. Kris and I graduated from this beautiful place in
1984. We met here. We fell in love here. Walking
the campus still feels like we belong here. And now,
our very first college graduate seems to think
this is her campus. How does that happen so fast?

With a slight change to the pronunciation of her name,
Anne Marie walks the graduation plank.

I just missed the turning of the tassles by
about four seconds. Fun to watch! But,
the hooping and hollering that followed was
fun...and only if you have Eagle eyes will you
spot Anne Marie before that man rudely
stands to take a photo of someone HE loves,
and blocks the view of someone I love! :)

When you have brought up kids, there are memories
you store directly in your tear ducts.

I guess I have never really doubted that we are all
born to our guardian angel.


Anne Marie with her Hyer cousins.
Karen's mother made leis out of dollar
bills for Chandler and Karen. One hundred
bucks on each lei!

Dodd and Zan with Chandler and Karen.

To us, family means putting your arms around each
other and being there. ~Barbara Bush~

My brother Creed and Sister-in-Law Ellen, with Spencer.
My brother Steven and Sister-in-Law Bev, with
Mark and Bev's mother, Donna.
Kris, myself, and Ty with Anne Marie and
her Grandma Hyer.

(I am missing the Hyer version of this group photo.
I was busy with cameras belonging to other
people, and missed getting the shot myself. Someone
please send me one!)

Donna, Bev, Mark and Steve

Anne Marie was so happy to
have her "Brumsy" there!

With Grandma Hyer

How fun is this...to finish college and celebrate with
people you have shared Christmas 'cookie days' with...
experienced Pine Mountain 'candy fests' with...
and most recently 'Sunday cousin dinners'
with while attending college?

Call recently moved to Provo and was interviewing for
a job during the first day of ceremonies. He got the
job! Then, ran over with a lovely bouquet of
flowers and found his sister. She was
pleased he was able to attend the
next day's college ceremonies
where she actually "walked."

With those eyes...
...had to do the glitter to match the robe!

It takes a long time to grow an old friend.
~John Leonard~

I value the friend who for me finds time on his calendar,
but I cherish the friend who for me does not
consult his calendar.

Kylie and Anne Marie. Dear friends
since they were 18 months old and enjoyed their first
play date together. These sweet girls have supported
and been there for each other in everything
important throughout their lives. I don't
anticipate a change in that!

I walked in and sat down...right in front of my cousin,
Marla who lives in Utah. Crazy. The Marriott Center
seats only 22,700 people, so naturally our blood
gravitated to the same place?? Our fathers are
brothers. I think we look like kin, don't you?!

In college I sang in a choir with Eric Jones who became
a dear friend. When he married Pia (next to me), Kris
and I enjoyed a year of married fun with them before
our college days came to a close and we headed off
in different directions. Eric passed away seven years
ago. Pia invited me to speak at his funeral. I still have
yet to delete his name from my list of email contacts.

She has since married just a great guy, Dennis Todd, who
was good friends with Eric and himself has a son
named Eric. Dennis is a perfect fit. We had a wonderful
and warm, but too-short reunion with them. Eric and Pia's
children are Jordan...recently called to serve in the Accra, Ghana
mission, and Stephanie who has been accepted to
two law schools...so far! Thanks you guys!!

BYU plays a three game series against their
rivals...the University of Utah...where
our son, Chase, attends college!

Alex Wolfe, #18 hit a walk-off home run in the final
game to win the series for BYU. Ty got the ball and
went with his sister onto the field to get the ball signed.
Kris and Ty were standing next to the grandparents of
Alex' wife, and found out that Alex was offered a contract
right out of high school with the Boston Red Sox for
over $300,000 dollars. He served a mission for the
Church instead. Maybe we should watch for him??

Anne Marie and Chase

There is a bond forged between people who have hid
under the same bed from the same parents.

This is Bag Number One...

This is Bag Number Two...

By accident we picked up the wrong bag at the Oakland
Airport. When we discovered the mistake the evening
we got home...we phoned the person who was listed
on the tag. Unbelievable. They had done the same
thing, and had our bag. What's more...they lived just down
the road in Modesto. When Kris went to meet them
and exchange bags...the two men laughed. They knew
each other from serving in the Church. Crazy. Those
bags could have traveled anywhere or been
picked up by anyone.

12 April 2010

Renewal. The Human and the Seasonal Kind.

In this post: Reunions with Sister Hailey
Holtzclaw, Family, and my bosom friend,
Marilyn Stokes.

Yosemite Redbud

Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience.
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Yes. Another beautiful day in Yosemite. Kris' brother
Kevin, his wife Catherine and two of their five boys,
Justin and Derek, came for a visit. The Redbud in
the Park was on full display. Beautiful.

Showing Kevin and family the trail, via a bronze map,
that Kris, Call, Ty and Anne Marie followed when
they hiked Half Dome last year.

Taking the hike to Vernal Falls

Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature's
peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The
winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms
their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves.
John Muir

Photo of John Muir in Yosemite. Do yourself a favor and
purchase Ken Burns' "The National Parks" documentary.

...And after ten years spent in the heart of it, rejoicing and
wondering, bathing in its glorious floods of light, seeing
the sunbursts of morning among the icy peaks, the noonday
radiance on the trees and rocks and snow, the flush of
alpenglow, and a thousand dashing waterfalls with their
marvelous abundance of irised spray, it still seems to me
above all others the Range of Light.
Alpenglow: A reddish glow seen on mountain tops
before sunrise or after sunset.

Justin, Derek and Ty on the walk to Vernal.

Illyilouette Falls...seen on the walk to Vernal.

The magnitudes of the rocks and trees and streams are
so delicately harmonized they are mostly hidden. Water-
falls, five hundred to one or two thousand feet high, are so
subordinated to the mighty cliffs over which they pour that
they seem like wisps of smoke, gentle as floating clouds,
though their voices fill the valley and make the rocks tremble.
John Muir

The Redbud trees were just indescribable...and
everywhere. I know you can grow them in your yard. But,
they just appear different in a setting such as Yosemite.

On our walk to Vernal Falls.

Ty, Marie, Kris, Justin, Catherine, Derek and Kevin
with Vernal Falls in the background.

The Vernal, four hundred feet high and about seventy-five
or eighty feet wide, drops smoothly over a round-lipped
precipice and forms a superb apron of embroidery, green
and white, slightly folded and fluted, maintaining this form
nearly to the bottom, where it is suddenly veiled in quick-
flying billows of spray and mist, in which the afternoon
sunbeams play with ravishing beauty of rainbow colors.

I just can't apologize for sharing more Redbud.
Absolutely stunning.

Water flowing downstream of Vernal.


To the outside world we all grow old. But not to brothers
and sisters. We know each other as we always were. We
know each other's hearts. We share private family jokes.
We remember family feuds and secrets, family griefs and
joys. We live outside the touch of time.
Clara Ortega

If life is a theater, then parenting is improv.
Robert Brault

Perhaps you can explain why I just saw three cousins
carrying a huge log 'for fun?' After raising three boys
myself, and Catherine FIVE boys, why would it not
have occurred to us that they were making this effort
so they could toss it over the bridge we were about
to cross? No harm done. I'm sure John Muir is still
resting easy...and it really was fun watching it float
off to some new resting place! But...hello!! I mean,
we weren't off to build a campfire or anything...

Following lunch at the beautiful Ahwahnee Lodge.

Photo by Kris.

The last bear I saw in the wild was in
West Yellowstone, as a child! Fun!

Have you seen the new show 'Minute
To Win It?' Kris and Kevin had to have 'a go'
at this challenge after we watched it
together on television.
(Good going, Kris. Sorry, Kevin!!)

Kris, Ty, Anne Marie, Marie, Marilyn and her daughter, Christy.

Our dear friend, "Sister" Hailey Holtzclaw returned
from serving her Latter-Day-Saint mission in Lisbon,
Portugal. We flew Anne Marie home to surprise
Hailey because they grew up together (as did Christy,
Marilyn's daughter...also shown.) Kris was
her home teacher forever, and I was one of her
Young Women Leaders. Marilyn Stokes, who brought
Hailey to Church since she was a very young girl
(because her family were not members of our Church),
also flew in from just outside of Boston, Massachusetts to
surprise our dear friend.
I have to tell you... Marilyn
moved away from Turlock when Ty was only about a year
old. So, he did not really know her like the rest of our family did.
However, Marilyn was the friend we phoned at 1:00 A.M. early
Christmas morning in 1994 to come and stay with our
other three children, while Kris and I went to the hospital
and I gave birth to Ty! Just one reason I call her my
'bosom' friend. She just is. So fun to have her back
in our home.

Oh, how good it feels! The hand of an old friend.
Henry Wordsworth Longfellow

Video of Anne Marie answering the door when Hailey
came to say hello. She had no idea Anne Marie was
in town. When she say's "I thought I was coming home
to a ghost town" she is referring to the fact she did
not think any of her young friends would be around
because college is still in session for most. So fun!! She
was not released yet...thus the handshake with Kris! LOVE
when she say's "Are we still on film?...I have to be well-
behaved. I have the name of the Church.." and
she points to her name tag!

Those friends thou hast, and their adoption tried
grapple them unto your soul with hoops of steel.
William Shakespeare, Hamlet

Where we love is home, home that our feet may leave,
but not our hearts. ~~Oliver Wendell Holmes~~

Kris and Anne Marie tried cooking on the salt
tablet we received from Dodd and Zan (Kris'
brother) for Christmas. It was FABULOUS.

One of the very nicest things about life is the way we must
regularly stop whatever it is we are doing and devote
our attention to eating! ~~Luciano Pavarotti~ Haha!

Good bye, sweet daughter...for now!