Friday, June 19, 2009

Life's a Parade

We had our annual Art City Days family sleepover last Friday night. Our list of activities included: The concert in the park which was the acappella comedy group Moose Butter,eating a Kiwanis scone with honeybutter, getting up at 6:30 (Dawson 5:45am) to go to the balloon launch Sat. am., fireman's breakfast at the new fire station, parade, Dawson's baseball game, and part of the concert Sat. evening which was rained out. It is a wonderful tradition!

Gabe is not a big fan of loud noises - the list includes fire engines in the parade and burners heating up the air inside big hot air balloons but dad's ready to reassure and explain and he is soon ok

Watching the parade go by - dad holds Gabe while the horses are prancing, freshly shaved head Dawson behind, and Tyfani holding baby Roman talking to Mariel

Haydon dancing to the loan drummer jammin' on a flat bed in the parade - we love our small town Springville style!

Gabe also dancing in the street at Art City Days Parade

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Home Make Over Ava Edition

Kitchen with new stove,hood,granite, painted cabinets (and clutter sorry)

Kitchen granite, undermount sink, new fixtures

The beautiful deck in a rare moment of sunshine

New basement bathroom

Living room (and one in dining room) chandelier

Living room carpet (doors from pantry resting there too)

Front entry/dining area laminate wood into carpeted living room

Living room window, new carpet and two tone paint and lights

Upstairs downstairs split, new white railings, new carpet

Master bath with granite counters, new tile, new fixtures, new ceiling, new paint,painted cabinets (still one coat left to do here)

Exterior with roses and bushes reshaped and new plantings, new lights, mulched beds

Monday I went out to clean and took a few pictures. I am not a professional real estate picture taker but I thought everyone would like a peak at the amazing home maker over. Please make comments - we need the pat on the back! Seriously, amazing and beautiful!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Trapped in a Time Warp "THE HOUSE"

Men on deck

New brushed nickel chandelier the first night it lights up

Have you ever felt like you are trapped in an old scifi TV show segment? Working on THE HOUSE for the last few months makes me feel that way. It seems like week after week you appear for another episode (or 2 or 3) and work on it but it is still not finished! It will never end. Surely everything will done before this week in June because we have to a.celebrate our anniversary, b.go to Art City Days concerts, parades and fireworks with our family, and c. finally get some of our own yard work and housework done? But no,there it is - really close but still not done. I will post more pictures when we go out for our final appearance this week so everyone can see how amazing it really looks.
Special guest stars this week included Donna and Peter who jetted in from Chicago to build the deck, scrub the tub and toilet, make store runs and much more than can be mentioned,Sue (Energizer Bunny) the painter who started the day she got back from cooking for a week at girl's camp and has stuck with the project, and 2 friends of Jonathan's (hope they are still friends)who stepped in when Jon had to get back to his real job at the U of U. The weary Balzottis and Gleaves thank you all and hopefully this week's episode will be the final, concluding episode of THE HOUSE - no reruns!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Book Look Review "The Story of Edgar Sawtelle"

“The Story of Edgar Sawtelle”
A vacation is when you vacate and leave to go somewhere else. And a staycation is where you stay close by and visit local spots like Seven Peaks Water Park. Then what should we a call it when you don’t even leave the house – a vegecation? If you are planning to vegetate at home this summer I have an excellent book to suggest. “The Story of Edgar Sawtelle” by David Wroblewski is 562 pages long so this vegecation can be a nice long one.

It is a novel set in another time and place. Edgar Sawtelle lives on his family farm with his parents in the North Woods of Wisconsin during the late 1950’s. Past generations of his family bought the remote farm to raise special dogs developed to be perfect companions for the humans chosen to own them. The breed becomes known as Sawtelle dogs and their legendary intelligence spreads as young dogs are carefully placed in new homes. But this is much more than a dog story. It is a story of the relationship between people and their animals and their land. It is the story of Edgar Sawtelle.

After several miscarriages Edgar is born to Trudy and Gar Sawtelle. Their joy is tempered by the discovery that their baby cannot make a sound. He doesn’t appear to be deaf but when his mouth opens to cry, only a breathy whisper emerges. One of the most extraordinary moments in the book happens next. Almondine, the dog who becomes his nanny, has only just met the tiny newcomer but knows that there is a worry being communicated between the parents and the doctor. As the new mother dozes in the rocking chair holding the silent sleeping baby swaddled in a white blanket, Almondine lies at her feet keeping watch. “…a sound reached her ears- a whispery rasp, barely audible, even to her. At first she couldn’t make sense of it…it took her a moment to understand that in this new sound she was hearing distress – to realize that this near-silence was the sound of him wailing. The baby had no voice. It couldn’t make a sound. She saw his mother continue to sleep – she finally understood: the thing that was going to happen was that her time for training was over, and now, at last, she had a job to do.” Almondine then gently wakes Trudy by licking her face.

The Sawtelle family divides the kennel work between them. Young Edgar, despite his physical handicap, begins feeding and caring for the large kennel of dogs in the barn at a very young age. His mother, a remarkably wise and graceful woman, trains the new pups as her husband oversees the breeding, maintenance of the kennel, and running the business operation for the farm. It is an idyllic life for this little family and their dogs. But Gar’s younger brother returns home bringing deception and disaster and driving young Edgar away into the woods where he learns to survive with three young dogs as his companions.

I found it difficult to return from my vegecation. Closing the last page and ending Edgar’s story was difficult. Returning to the reality of a busy schedule filled with tasks and timetables was stressful. But every once in a while my mind drifted back to Edgar Sawtelle and Almondine and I remembered how I felt while reading this great book.