30 June 2009

Grandpa Virgel Edgar McMullin

Born 29th June 1896, Virgel Edgar McMullin is my maternal grandfather. Grandma Cassie was his second marriage. His first wife Rita Lewis had died young and he had two young boys which my grandparents raised along with my mom and her twin brother. All have passed on except my mom who is in the hospital now for sickness due to her diabetes. Grandpa Virgel was introduced to the church by Grandma Cassie and finally joined at age 54. My mother says that she thinks he believed in the teachings of the church earlier than that but just didn't have the faith to live it. His poor health later in life changed all that. As he became older, he lost a leg because of a blood clot due to smoking. Its thought at that time it was an eye opening experience which turned him closer to the church and its teachings so he was baptized.
After being baptized, he started doing genealogy and he and my grandma took trips to Missouri and other family history spots. At age 70 he became ill with another blood clot and died the 16th July 1966. Its interesting to know that my grandfather had our family history line linked back to North Carolina, not too far from where I am living now. I've often hoped that I can further the McMullin line by finding a link here in North Carolina...maybe someday. I have many great memories of visiting my grandparents in San Dimas California at this old house pictured here. The big apricot tree on the side of the house made lots of treats from my grandma's hands. The old place was torn down years ago and made into a parking lot. I still enjoy going back there, on occasion, and remembering the good old days.

27 June 2009

Pickin' and a Grinnin'

Last month I did a class on canning for Relief Society. I haven't been canning lately so it motivated me to get my old jars out. I did strawberry jam, chow chow, pickled beets, apple pie filling and for the first time ever I canned green beans. With my friend Debbie and her daughter Amy, we went out and picked beans for $9.00/a bushel. I was able to bottle 21 quarts from the bushel...whew! Thanks to Carson for helping with the snapping.
"Our Heavenly Father
created this beautiful earth,
with all its abundance,
for our benefit and use.
His purpose is to
provide for our needs as we
walk in faith and obedience..."
~The First Presidency

26 June 2009

Good Luck Janet!

Yeah Janet! My niece (Mark & Jolinda's daughter) has made it through the first round of auditions to sing the national anthem on Mormon Nite at Dodger Stadium. I love her voice and we are so proud of her. Good Luck! The competition looks tough so whatever happens have fun with it. We think you're great!

"As long as we live,

there never is enough singing."

~Martin Luther

21 June 2009

Just Me & My Dad

My Baptism Day
June 1965
Some Favorite Quotes about Fathers
"Any man can be a father.
It takes someone special to be a dad."
"Fatherhood is pretending the present
you love most is soap on a rope."
~Bill Cosby
"It is much easier to become a father
than to be one"
~Kent Nerburn
"When I was a boy of 14, my father was so ignorant,
I could hardly stand to have the old man around,
but when I got to be 21, I was astonished at how much
the old man learned in seven years."
~Mark Twain
“By profession, I am a soldier and take pride in that fact,
but I am prouder--infanitely prouder--to be a father. . .
it is my hope that my son, when I am gone,
will remember me not from the battle but
in the home repeating with him our simple daily prayer. . ."
~Douglas McArthur
"It should have great meaning that of all the titles
of respect and honor and admiration that
could be given him, God himself, he who is the
highest of all, chose to be addressed simply as Father."
~Boyd K. Packer
Finally, I love this quote by D. Todd Christofferson that was in the mormon message video, "Let Us Be Men"
"Though he will make some sacrifices and deny himself
some pleasures in the course of honoring his commitments,
a true man leads a rewarding life. He gives much
but receives more and lives content in the approval of his
Heavenly Father. The life of true manhood is the good life."

18 June 2009

Kiss the Girl

Happy Birthday Cassie!

My sister Martha's fourth child, Cassie celebrated her birthday on the 15th. This picture is of my son Jake kissing her when they were about two years old. Its got to be one of my most favorite pictures I have because, unlike the Disney Movie, Little Mermaid Song, "Kiss the Girl," He had no shyness about giving his cousin Cassie a little smooch. Martha, Mark and me all had children in the year '85. Jake (mine), Davey (Mark's) and Cassie (Martha's). We loved getting the kids together and having them strike a pose.
Cassie now lives in southern California with her husband Ruben and their three boys.
Love you guys,

16 June 2009

A Little Family History

Dad's Family
Dad (drum), Uncle Jim (piano), Uncle Bob (trumpet),
Aunt Betty(violin), Aunt Doris (clarinet), Pop in back
My dad's birthday was on June 11th and he turned 82 years old. Ironically his oldest brother Jim was born on the same day ten years earlier. His two sisters Betty and Doris almost shared the same birthday, born May 22nd and 24th and his other brother Bob born at the beginning of May. So all siblings had birthdays that were in the months of May and June. My dad's mother passed away six months after he was born and so he was left being raised by his father with the help of two loving aunts... Beth and Jean. My dad had much love for Aunt Beth and for her I was named. There aren't many pictures of my dad in his youth. This rare picture shows how musical my dad's family was. Most don't know that my dad loved to sing and perform. I never heard him play the drums even though he's pictured here with one. My dad loved sports and enjoyed coaching. He coached some Pee Wee Football but is most known for coaching Little League Baseball off and on for years. He also loved tennis. He joined the church when he was twenty-five. His sister Betty knew my mom's brother and they started having my parents write letters to each other when my dad was in the navy on a ship. In correspondence, he found out my mom was Mormon and started reading the Book of Mormon. He felt the Spirit very strong as he read it. He knew that what he felt was from God and so he was baptized into the church. He has always had a very strong testimony and is very sensitive to the Spirit. He loved helping the missionaries and bearing his testimony to all. As a senior, he served a mission with my mom in Nauvoo, IL. He also loved doing family history and has helped many searching their family trees. He loved being a home teacher and was a great example to me of giving service. My dad was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease a few years ago and his body is aging with arthritis. For his birthday, my sister took him some homemade ice cream. She asked him if he was aware it was his birthday and if he knew how old he was. He answered "97." He laughed about it so we don't know if he was making a joke or just didn't know how old he really is. Some days are good and some are bad but I'm grateful for my father for his acts of service and his love for Jesus Christ. The other day in church, we we're singing "Abide with me 'Tis Eventide" and it brought tears to my eyes because I can remember my dad singing it with such passion as a child. I like the second verse the most:
Abide with me 'tis eventide.
Thy walk today with me
Has made my heart within me burn,
As I communed with thee.
Thy earnest words have filled my soul
and kept me near thy side.
O Savior, stay this night with me:
Behold, 'tis eventide.
O Savior, stay this night with me:
Behold, 'tis eventide.
Lowrie M. Hoffard

07 June 2009

Beauty & The Beast, Middle School Style

"Be Our Guest" Jessica & Jodi
Last night we went and saw Jessica's Middle School perform "Beauty and The Beast" Jessica got to be a narrator and villager in the play. She also got to be a spatula in the scene and song "Be Our Guest" which I personally thought was the best part of the play. Five youth from our church participated in the event which included our cousin Kyle B. He was great as "Lefou." Our friend Brigham played a lead role as "Gaston". All sang so well. We feel really impressed with our Middle School here to be able to do such a great job in performing arts. We're just a small, country school at the edge of the county. Last night the Assistant Principal said that our school is one of the best kept secrets in our county and I would totally agree. We feel really blessed to have such wonderful teachers at the middle school level who want to have great things for our kids.
Jodi, Brigham, Kyle, Jemma & Jessica
Our youth from the church
had a fun time performing
Cousin Kyle with his sister Kellee
I think he has acting in his future

Music is the soul of the world
embedded in sound

04 June 2009

Put Another Candle on My Birthday Cake

We celebrated my 52nd birthday on June 2nd. Maybe you better not "put another candle on my birthday cake," you might not be able to see the cake. In the "old days" I would come home from school as a child to hear Sheriff John sing "The Birthday Cake Song" on his TV show. So for most of my kid's birthdays, they've had to endure hearing me sing that song to them. Oh well, my own goofy tradition, I guess. But really, the older I get the more I realize how fast time truly goes by and how many more things I still want to do. I love this quote:
"Watches are so named as a reminder -
if you don't watch carefully
what you do with your time,
it will slip away from you. "
~Drew Sirtors
I also love this quote:
We should work hard and use our time wisely
to serve our families and build up the kingdom of God.
Time and the ability to labor
are the capital stock of the whole world of mankind,
and we are all indebted to God
for the ability to use time to [our] advantage. . ."
~Brigham Young
Well, birthday celebration is over. I guess I better get moving.

02 June 2009

My May Recipe

Sour Cream Enchiladas
2 cans cream of chicken soup
1 small can diced green chilies
1 small can chopped olives (optional)
1 8 oz. carton sour cream
1 cooked diced chicken
shredded jack cheese
shredded cheddar cheese
flour tortillas

DIRECTIONS: Mix together soup, sour cream, chilies and 1/2 olives. Place a layer of sauce in the baking dish (so enchiladas won't stick while baking). Then add 1/2 of sauce to diced chicken and mix real good. Place a serving of mix and some cheese in tortilla, roll and place in dish. When dish is full, pour remaining sauce over enchiladas. Top with lots of cheese and remaining olives. Bake at 375 for 20 to 40 minutes until heated through. (Sometimes in a hurry I'll layer the tortillas and sauce like making lasagna, I also like it with green onions.) Yum!

Good recipe to use with leftover chicken. I don't usually use a whole chicken with this recipe.

01 June 2009

Birthday Catch up

I haven't kept up well on my family birthday greetings in May so here's my belated version.

Annie R. S. at about 3 years old
and with her husband Adam & kids

Annie's birthday was May 6th. She has two children and is living in Star, Idaho near Boise. She's my brother Mark's oldest. I feel a special closeness to Annie in spirit because she loved playing basketball as a youth, she served a full-time mission, and she graduated in physical education. She also serves with the Young Women which I served for many years in my 20's.

Happy Birthday Annie, love you.

Wendy, wife of Rick B. and
Yvonne, wife of Davey R.

Happy Birthday to two niece-in-laws. Wendy on May 13th and Yvonne on May 21st. I love these pictures. Rick & family in Japan. Davey & Yvonne (Ma and Pa) on a pioneer trek with their stake youth.

Bill B. holding baby Steven L. 1987 and
with wife Chelsea and their newborn Ryan 2009

Bill celebrated his birthday May 5th, Chelsea also had her birthday in May, yesterday, the 31st. Bill is my sister Martha's second son. Through the years, all in the family loved to take pictures of Bill because he always had such a cute smerky smile. He and Chelsea live in Arizona where Bill teaches seminary for the Church. Chelsea also taught 1st grade this year. I don't get to go to many of my family's weddings but I was able to see Bill and Chelsea get married in the LA Temple a few years ago and I hadn't been there in quite a long time. . .it was a real treat. Love you guys.

Scott R. and Jolinda T. R. (center front)
both with birthdays in May
(This is my favorite picture of my brother Mark's family)

Scott was born on May 23rd and I believe he turned 15 this year. He's Mark and Jo's youngest. I can remember visiting them when he was only 18 months old and he kept wanting to climb up on the kitchen table. The moment that Jolinda would put him down, he would be climbing back up. It was cute but a bit scarey. We loved watching him as a tot. Now that he's growing up, Carson and Jessica think Scott is pretty cool and love it when our families gets together. Jolinda has been the best sister-in-law ever, putting up with all the wierdness of our family. She's great! We love her. I love that she's always up for a game of scrabble or whatever one wants to play. . . she's there. She's also very talented in sewing and music. Love you Jolinda. Her birthday was May 5th. Happy Birthday to all!