Monday, December 29, 2008


Apparently the Utah County Building is having some "issues".

Friday, December 26, 2008

Have you ever seen an angel????

Two sweet happy angel sisters Erika and Melissa.
Pretty In blue.

Angel Father-in-law teaching Tyler about being 
the best angel he can be!

An Angel mother with her angel twin girls.

An Angel dear husband with his devil wife...
Who spawned this devil child who can't seem to keep
her middle finger down at early morning
Christmas hours.
She's an angel though!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


The Christmas tradition of "real" caramel making is alive and well in the Anderson home.  Christmas is not the same if a batch (or three) of Grandma Neen's caramels is not made.
Arline taught me this delight before she passed away and I will forever be grateful for 
this lost art which she passed to me.
She also taught me the the cherry chocolate making skills (see last blog).
Our delicious wrapped caramels.
See the stocking?  Erika made that for Tyler with no pattern...what a talent.

This is a great recipe for Caramel Bugles.  Usually I use Bugles but this time I tried "Pirate Booty"  or corn puffs.  It is really delicious.  Here's the recipe:
2 cups brown sugar
1 cup light Karo syrup
2 cubes butter
1 can sweetened condensed milk
Mix and stir constantly on medium until temperature reaches soft ball stage.  Pour over bugles (or corn puffs) and mix together.

Terry loves it!  And ME!  

Sunday, December 14, 2008

A Family of Dips!

Advance Warning:  Cherry dipping is NOT the same as skinny dipping.  In fact, eating said chocolates results in less skinny dipping!
Last Friday, our family spent the evening dipping cherry chocolates.  This is a yearly tradition ever since my mother-in-law taught me the fine art over 10 years ago.
Now she is no longer with us here on earth but her candy making lives on.
Here is a beautiful picture of the end results:

We made almost 200 of these beauties. 
Plus, we dipped almonds AND homemade caramel. (another Christmas must have)

Here's Erika and Tyler along with our little helper, Ali.
He just jumped right up and put his paws on the counter like he was ready to help.

Here's Terry teaching Ali to wrap the fondant around the cherry.
I think he just wanted to eat it!
(oh, and there's Melissa in the background enjoying some homemade caramel)

Monday, December 8, 2008

Fixin' and Missin'

Things are looking up!  I've felt great for the last couple of days.  I was able to put my trees up and decorate our home.  It took me about two weeks from start to finish because I took it so slowly, which is the story of my life these days.   It's all done and I feel all happy and festive inside.  Here, take a look:

Front Room

Family Room

Today was the first time I've felt that returning to work was something I could possibly do.  In fact, I got a little bit excited about it.  I miss my kids and am dying to see them.  I've purchased a little present for each child and I'll deliver them the day before school is out for vacation (Dec. 19).   I'm feeling all warm and fuzzy about my sweet first graders.  This is probably because Adrianne (my co-teacher) dropped by last week with a disc of Halloween photos of the class.  I love, love, love to teach at Halloween time.  But, due to the tumor, I missed it all.  After looking at these pictures, you can see why I miss them and love them so much.

ARRRRR...The Pirates

Gimmee an "A"

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Happy Birthday Melissa!

The birthday girl!

Today is my oldest daughter's 21st birthday.  I don't know how that happened but it did and I'm so proud of the adult she officially is!  We (Terry and I) had the privilege of spending the day with her. 

The best part?  The party!  Melissa's friend Susanna planned the whole thing.  It was held at a swanky new night club in downtown Provo.  I know that sounds like an oxymoron but it's true.  The place is called "Sparks" and serves all non-alcoholic drinks.  Each person who came got one drink and bottomless appetizers.  We all dressed up and had a great time.  Have a peek at all the fun...

Melissa and Susi

Erika (my baby daughter), me, Melissa, Susi
(Yes, I curled my hair and my leg is showing above my boots...oh, the horrors!)

Erika with a Shirley Temple.  That's cotton candy on top.
That was our favorite part.'s non alcoholic!
I loved this little mock appletini.  It was like cold wassail.  It really put me in the mood for the holidays.  Oh, and see my manicure?  Terry actually did it!  He is an 
artist after all!

Blowing out the candles.

Monday, December 1, 2008

I'm a teeny, tiny bit discouraged...dang it!

I'm so tired!

If you know me well, you know that I like to keep myself busy.  I teach school, I work at Bath and Body Works about four days a week, I like to go shopping, etc.  I like to keep busy.

So, when I was planning for the big surgery, I had it all planned out that at the magical six week mark I would be perfectly fine and ready to resume my life as I knew it before.  WRONG!  There is nothing magical about six weeks.  In fact, I've been home now for 40 days and I'm still not ready to take on the world.  

Every day I have tried to get out and do shop, walk in the mall, go to Barnes and Noble.  By the time I'm at my destination, I'm ready to come back home.  I'm exhausted.  I'm so discouraged.  I thought I'd be better by now.

I do feel better as far as the pain goes but not as far as the exhaustion goes.  I put my problem to the friends I love and trust on my Weight Watchers message board.  I got two responses that really made sense to me.  They cheered me up and I read them every single day.  Thanks to my dear friends Boo and Mo (not their real names obviously) for being so eloquent and also for their permission to post their responses here.  They really do explain what I couldn't put into words about my healing.

1st from Boo:
Tami, it takes time.  Besides the anesthesia, your body had been severely injured.  Yea, the doctors did it purposely and in a controlled way, but your body doesn't know that.  It knows it's been injured, and is taking care of itself.  Your energy will come back.  I promise.  Poor sweet Tami. :(

2nd from Mo:
Boo is exactly right.  Surgery is major trauma to the body.  Think of it like a car accident, or other major trauma.  Like Boo said, it was trauma that was very controlled and contained, but still trauma.

On top of that, you had this thing that grew very, very slowly ad started pushing your organs out of the way to make room for itself.  Your blood vessels carried blood and oxygen to it, and it was starting to damage some of your other organs.  Then, one day, it's gone.  So now instead of the slow pushing movement of your organs in one direction, they have this giant space to move back into and slosh around.  Ouch.  Plus, the organs that the tumor damaged need to heal as well.

All of this requires energy.  It doesn't feel like it, because it's not the kind of energy expended when you get up and move, but trust me, your body is expending it.  Your cells and processes are using a lot of energy to give you your strength back and get you, not back to normal, but in better shape than you were in.

It takes time.  You will get there, young lady (I liked that part). Patience.

Pretty good advice eh?  So now I'm being patient and letting my body do it's job.

Thanks Boo and Mo.  
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