Monday, August 31, 2009

America's Drive-in

No more driving to upstate N.Y. to eat at the closest Sonic! The good news is that there is now one in Peabody, Mass. The bad news is that the lines are long (it's been open 5 days). I went tonight with some friends. We waited for 10 minutes, gave up, and went to Wendy's in Woburn. We'll be back...

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Guest blogging gig (again)

Today I'm the guest blogger on the Segullah blog!

From tablecloth to apron

My friend Angi and I have a craft swap going on. She makes something for me and then I make something for her. She's moving to Seattle--tomorrow--and it was my turn to make her something so today (while watching Ted Kennedy's funeral) I made her this apron from a tablecloth that I bought on Monday (the same place I got these books). I'm going to miss Angi. She's a crafty friend (and the best Primary Chorister EVER!). We're still going to make things for each other so it will be a cross country craft swap.

Saturday, August 29, 2009


One of my summer jobs during college was working for Customer Service at the phone company on Van Nuys Blvd. I greeted customers and helped them trouble-shoot their phone bill issues. I often directed them to phones on the wall that would dial a customer service agent (in an office behind the wall) who would hopefully help them solve their phone bill problems. One day I helped a man who showed me his phone bill that had a 880-minute long distance phone call on it!! That means talking for over 14 hours! I sure hope the poor guy got his bill taken care of. Now days doesn't everyone have an unlimited calling plan?

I was reminded of this story last night when I hung up from talking to my sister-in-law after 142 minutes! I'm glad it's all part of the plan.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Favorite Things Swap

I saw this swap on one of the (many) blogs I read and signed up. My package arrived today and it was a nice card, stationery, stickers, soap, a cute eco-friendly bag, and a keychain. I love all of it! My swap partner was Amy from craftingbycandlelight. Thanks, Amy!!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

China 1999 memories

It was our last day in Nanning and I remembered I had brought some black&white film. One of the moms went with me and we walked around the streets near our hotel and I quickly took 48 photos. This is one of my favorite pictures from my trip. Part of me wishes I had taken all my pictures in black&white (55 rolls!).

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Back to July 4th

I loaned my niece my small digital camera to take to Europe. I got it back last week and uploaded photos tonight (now that my computer is fixed!) and look what I found. This was taken on July 4th at the Ft. Lauderdale Airport. Ian looks tired. Kim looks proud. Adrienne looks happy. And Jamel was in Europe.

Happy Anniversary!

My wishes are late (how long will I use my camera/computer issues as an excuse?) but Happy 17th Anniversary to Chuck and Jennifer! They are best friends and love life's adventures!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

A rare sight in New England

Especially in Cambridge. Monster truck takes on the Fresh Pond Mall.

Old books

I drove to Templeton (central Mass.) yesterday and stopped at one of my favorite antique shops. These books were on sale. For a dollar. I'm really happy about the cookbooks. They are from 1938, 1941 and 1950. The MASSA-CHUSETTS book has some cool stuff in it. And, I was a Girl Scout so I am happy to have another handbook handy!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Serendipitous day off

I took today as a vacation day. My phone rang this morning while I was sleeping in and when I checked my voice mail later it was the camera repair shop. If I hadn't had the day off I wouldn't have been able to pick my camera up until Saturday. Hooray for today! I went for a drive this afternoon and stopped on the way home to visit one of my blogging buddies and this photo was taken in her beautiful garden.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Peach pie

Many many years ago back in the land of California I entered a "pie contest" at a summer church fair. I made the crust from scratch and then dumped in a can of cherry pie filling. I wasn't thinking. I was young. I never imagined I'd win a ribbon AND that my brother would mock me for committing "pie fraud".

Yesterday I made this peach pie in a small-sized pie tin I found at an antique shop a few years ago. It's contest-worthy: made from scratch (crust and filling).

Note: Please excuse the lame photo. My big camera and computer are both in repair shops. I am anticipating their return(s) this week. Sigh.

Saturday, August 22, 2009


Good friends. Good food. Good-bye (to the Woods).

The Time Traveler's Wife

Enjoyed movie night with friends but I'm not going to lie -- I didn't really enjoy the movie.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Number ten

My friend Laree, the youngest of the LaPierre's ten kids, is heading to BYU next week!  I took her out for ice cream last night.  She's really excited about college and I'm sure she'll have a great experience.  I gave her some advice: hike the Y, go to the devotionals and international cinema movies, make lots of friends, etc.  Oh, and study!!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

No photoshop in this photo

I took this photo with my cell phone on the bus tonight. Gotta love the MBTA! I love handmade signs on the bus!

Note: No bus tomorrow. My car is out of the repair shop. It's so quiet and no more dripping water. And, I've even got a new tire.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

China 1999 memories

One of the most interesting parts of my trip to China was when we went to visit the foster families that 4 of the girls had lived with. This little girl had lived with this couple for a few months. It was really sweet to see her with them. There is a lot of love in this photo.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Leaf Society Ladies

My youngest brother called the Relief Society, the "Leaf Society".  Here is a picture of the Arlington Ward Leaf Society Presidency.  We didn't plan on dressing like angels.  It was just a nice coincidence.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Look at us!

It was the night before Robes and Kim got married in Atlanta (October of 1983--4 years before this photo). We were at Kim's parents' home in Dahlonega, GA, having an open house. One of Kim's aunts asked me if we were adopted.

I was so intrigued; I had NEVER been asked that question.

My reply, "Why do you ask?"

She said, "Because you call your parents by their first names."

Saturday, August 15, 2009


I've got a pocket full of pin money and the Yard Sale is over! I was going to take my leftover treasures to Goodwill on the way home but my friend is having another yard sale in September so I donated my stuff to her. My load has been lightened and I'm smiling!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Tomorrow: Yard sale

My friend and I are having a yard sale tomorrow. I've got a lot of treasures to sell (kitchen stuff, clothes, shoes, bags, books, DVDs, patterns and more).

I'm hoping to make fifty bucks.

Note: this photo was taken at my last yard sale (before I bought my condo) and if I remember correctly I made about $200 and sold nothing for over $5. A lucky lady got a Coach bag for $5.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Kimballs: #5

I went to Kimballs tonight (for the 5th time so far this summer) with a few friends. This time I had Moo Tracks (vanilla ice cream, chocolate swirls and peanut butter cups). You can't go wrong with Moo Tracks.

This photo was taken earlier this summer (remember, I'm digital camera-less right now). I'll call it "quaint New England".

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

August 1998 - New York City

Eleven years ago around this time I was in New York City with my brother Robes and sister-in-law Kim. Robes had an appointment at a clinic for alternative cancer therapy (his tumor had crossed the midline of his brain and there were no medical options left) so I took the bus from Boston and spent the weekend with them. I have a lot of sad memories from that weekend. But my favorite memory was when Robes asked me to go downstairs and get him a "kotard" (that was the brain tumor talking). I asked him if that was a kotex that could be used as a postcard. He smiled. I laughed. And I laugh when I remember because otherwise I wouldn't stop crying.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

The three C's

In alphabetical order they are: camera, car, computer

And they are all in need of repair.

I wasn't sure I wanted to dump more money into my Canon 10D (it cost me $239 to repair the automatic focus in January) but decided to spend the $148 to fix a spring (that makes the automatic focus not work). I'm not ready to buy a new DSLR. It's in the shop so I feel a bit stranded without a digital camera (I loaned my niece my small digital camera for her Europe trip and it should arrive any day now). I wanted to take a photo of the sign at the restaurant I ate at last night with friends. [Shrimp tacos. Yum!] I need my camera with me. At. all. times.

The tailpipe on my car sounds very LOUD. Is it about to fall off? Can I blame the streets of Boston? The last time I took my car in I had a list of 6 things for them to look at/repair. There is water leaking into the passenger seat. They told me "there are cars newer than yours that have that problem". I don't doubt it. This time I'll have to be clear and say "FIX IT!"

And, last-but-not-least, my computer turns itself off now and then and when I reboot it I see this extremely disturbing message: Alert! Previous shutdown due to thermal event. I'm trying to organize things on my computer so it's all backed up, just in case that thermal event means death to my Dell.

Monday, August 10, 2009

China 1999 memories

This is one of my favorite photos from my trip to China in 1999. Those bundles may not be heavy, but they sure are bulky!

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Sloppy Joes

I saw this in a recent Williams Sonoma catalog and it made me want to share my friend Mariann's recipe for Sloppy Joes (the best I've ever had!):

2 lbs. hamburger
1/2 cup ketchup
1 T worchestershire sauce
1 can tomato sup
2 T vinegar
1 T mustard (prepared)
2 T brown sugar

Brown meat. Add ingredients. Simmer slowly for a half hour. Serve on hamburger buns. Makes 15.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Market Basket angel

I was out-and-about today running errands and helping a friend pick up a chair from craigslist and decided to stop at Market Basket on my way home. I was almost done shopping and reached into my purse and my wallet wasn't there. I immediately remembered that my friend and I had stopped at a bakery and I had taken my wallet inside and must have tossed it onto the floor of her car and not into my purse. Thank goodness I had seen my friend Cami in one of the aisles while grocery shopping. I decided to forget adding watermelon to my cart and chased Cami down and asked if she would pay for my groceries and I'd give her a check tomorrow at church. Maybe that was nervy of me but I didn't want to ditch my cart of groceries (get my wallet and go back--ugh!) and she knows where I live. Cami is my Market Basket angel!

Movie review

A few people have asked what I thought of Julie & Julia. I really liked it! I came home last night and found Julie Powell's blog. [I also found this more recent blog of hers.] What a great idea to make all the recipes in Julia Childs' recipe book in one year. I read this book a few years ago and this book recently for book club which made the movie even that more enjoyable.

Today I finished reading A Homemade Life which I really liked. It was filled with wonderful stories and lots of interesting recipes. I actually made the Italian grotto eggs twice this week and I might just make her chocolate cake tonight.

That's a lotta links!

Friday, August 07, 2009

Movie night

I'm going to the 10:00pm show and I know I'm going to love this movie!

Thursday, August 06, 2009

China 1999 memories

Ten years ago this month I spent two weeks in China. My friend Jennifer was adopting her second daughter from China and invited me to go with her. She said I was good in groups, wouldn't tell her what to do with the baby, and I can't remember the third reason she invited me! It was an adventure! There were 7 families from the Boston area in our group. It was so wonderful to be part of this amazing experience. I took 55 rolls of film on that trip and during this month to celebrate the 10th anniversary of traveling to China I'm going to share some of my favorite photos.

This photo was taken outside the city orphanage in Nanning (where 3 of the girls had been living) and makes me think of friendship.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Dinner guests

I've gotten to know one of the counselors in the Boston Temple presidency and his wife a little bit--a very nice couple from western Massachusetts. When I found out that they stay at the local Quality Inn during the week so they are close to the Temple I invited them to dinner and tonight was the night. I served pasta with hollandaise sauce, green salad, garlic bread, fresh pineapple AND homemade nectarine ice cream (made last night at midnight). I enjoyed getting to know them better, they loved my condo and I hope to have them over again before their assignment is over in the fall.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

The price is right

Two bags of groceries.
For reals???

Monday, August 03, 2009

Nantucket, July 2008.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

The Pitchforths

My mother's maiden name is Pitchforth. Two of my brothers have Pitchforth as their middle name (Robert and John). It's (obviously) not a very common name.

A few years after I moved to Boston, I was driving down some random road in Arundel, Maine and as I drove by a mailbox noticed it said PITCHFORTH on it! Are you kidding me?!? No way! I stopped the car and took a photo of the mailbox and sent it to Grandmother Pitchforth who was still living (I need to find the negative to that photo). My brother Robert/Robes visited within a year of that and we went to Maine and we found that mailbox. Robes was more daring than I and decided we should drive down the road to meet the Pitchforths. So we did. Barry Pitchforth was taking a nap on a picnic table but got up and had a short visit with us. I thought he resembled Grandpa Pitchforth (my mom's father). Barry called his parents that day and told them that we had stopped by and he told them that Robes reminded him of his side of the family (which is funny because Robes and my dad look a lot alike).

A year or so after my friend Brian married Jenifer he called me one night and asked if I was related to Ann Hughlings Pitchforth. Of course I was and asked him why. Turns out his wife Jenifer is related to her too. Now we call each other cousin.

Last night I went to dinner and a movie with my friends Alicia, Leah, Jenn, Alicia's brother Micah and his wife Morgan. [You know where this is going...] I asked Morgan where she was from and she said Minersville (that's in Utah) and I told her I had family that lived there--the Pitchforths. She got a funny look on her face and said she was related to some Pitchforths. Minersville is tiny (from trusty Wikipedia: Minersville is a town in Beaver County, Utah. The population was 817 at the 2000 census). Told ya.

Morgan's great-grandfather and my Grandpa Pitchforth were brothers.

It's a small world after all. It's a small, small world.

Lena is in Boston!

My friend Lena is in town and tonight a bunch of her Arlington Ward buddies gathered at the LaPierre's home (where else?!) for dinner. It was a really fun evening. Lena is athletic, inspiring, beautiful, smart (she's transferring from the UofU to Stanford this fall), and the list goes on. It has been so nice to see her (I saw her last year in Utah) and she's got a soft spot in her heart for Boston, I can tell!

Saturday, August 01, 2009

She's got brothers

Family Reunion

I was the photographer for the Dredge Family Reunion today.

Summer re-reading

My brother Robes did a communications internship in New York City 27 summers ago (he was a BYU Journalism major). The first weekend there he bought a really cool small hardbound book at Macy's for $1.00 and he faithfully kept a journal for those two months. I've enjoyed re-re-re-re-reading it and just read it again this week, finishing tonight. Here are a few of my favorite entries.