Wednesday, December 24, 2008
I started making dinner every Friday and Saturday. I reorganized my mom's books in their current boxes, so they're more in order than before within the boxes.
Before the snow came, I had walked to the Fairview Cemetary 3 days in a row. While there, I did some of my scripture studying at her grave. I went from November 3 to 5. On November 3rd, I picked up my new glasses that my dad got for me the week before. I had started wearing glasses in the 3rd grade but stopped when I was in the 6th grade and hadn't worn any since. So, it was interesting to wear some again after so long.
Starting in the beginning of December, I began calling Rachel on Friday nights at around 5 pm to update her on how things are going, with me and my preparation for a mission.
I also drew a new picture during my time here. This is it:
Friday, October 31, 2008
Rachel, Sara, and I drove to California for the McGee Family Reunion for the 4th of July weekend. We left Utah on Thursday, July 3rd and got to Uncle Larry's house around 3 am. While we were heading there, we got a flat tire (well, actually the tire burst) and some guy on a rural road changed the tire for us. We also got lost in San Francisco when Rachel accidentally took an exit when we wanted to stay on the road. We ended up stuck on a street that it was literally impossible to turn left off of. Then, once we managed to get to Pacifica (the town where our uncle lives) it was pretty impossible to read the street signs, because it was so dark out, in addition there was really bad fog, plus some signs were hidden, but we managed to get there in the end. We got a couple hours sleep before people started leaving the house to see the tide pools, and we decided to go with them. We left for Utah that Sunday afternoon. Our cousin, Brittany came with us so we'd have two people who could drive. Though the only trouble we had going back was that we had to use ducktape to keep Rachel's trunk closed.
On Tuesday morning, Rachel and I drove to West Jordan, because we were going to Lagoon because Becky's work had dicounted tickets for that day. We went on all kinds of rides. I had been to Lagoon once before when Mom, Sara, and I had come with Becky and the rest a couple years before, but Rachel had been on her mission at the time.
Then, on Thursday, Rachel and I were taking her desktop computer to my apartment to set up, when Rachel caring a big box stepped down from a curb and injured her foot. We took the computer to my apartment, where I had to set it up under Rachel's direction. Then, we found a place that her insurance would be accepted at and she had to drive herself to the hospital, where I ran in ahead of her to get a wheelchair so she could get in easier. From there, we went to the Emergency Room where she got checked and they told us that it was sprained wrapped it and gave her crutches and gave her a prescription for the pain and then we went to Walgreens to fill the prescription. After we got home that night, and were eating dinner (cereal because it was so late), they called her and wanted her to come back in, this time she got her roommate to drive her while I walked back to my apartment. They had discovered that Rachel had an avulsion fracture which one of my roommates had told Rachel that it looked like it could be.
For the next week or so, I became Rachel's pack horse, carrying her stuff for her. I had to wake up extra early to go over to her apartment to carry her stuff to BYU campus.
On Monday, August 18th, Rachel had to be out of her apartment and she didn't have another apartment so she was homeless. Then, on Wednesday, I had to be out of my apartment as well. So, we ended up staying at our cousin's (Adam and Betsy McGee) home for several days, until Rachel and Sara (whom needed to move out of Aunt Linda's house where she had been living) were able to find an apartment that they could have Gizmo, Rachel's cat at. They found a place on the 26th and were able to move in that very day.
On Monday, August 25th, when Sara, Rachel, and I went to look at an apartment that Sara had found in Ogden, we had a little car trouble, Rachel's car wouldn't stay running. So, we ended up taking it to some local place but after sitting around for hours they still couldn't do anything, so we got a ride from Brittany and Aunt Carla picked us up from Ogden and took us to Salt Lake where we met up with Betsy and she drove us back to Provo. Aunt Carla also told us that they knew someone that could possibly do something about Rachel's car.
I took the bus back to Bismarck on Tuesday morning at 6:05 am. It started with me leaving Provo at 6:05 am and from there I had an hour layover in Salt Lake before taking the bus all the way to Butte, Montana and there I had a 7 to 8 hour layover. I left Butte at around 1:30 am and went to Billings where I had an hour layover, before I got on the bus that would take me the rest of the way to Bismarck. Upon arriving in Bismarck, I discovered that they had lost one of my suitcases when I switched buses in Billings. So, when I went to sleep my first night back, a had to use a blanket other than my own, and I only had one pair of clean pants that wasn't stained (which was only because I had left said pair of pants in Bismarck to begin with because I really don't like wearing them all that much because whenever I go out in those pants when the ground is even wet, I always arrive home with the bottoms of the legs soaking wet). I got a call the next morning around 11:30 am telling me that my suitcase was at the bus depot and that I could pick it up anytime before 5 pm that day. So, my dad took me to get it during his lunch break that day. So, at least it only stayed lost for less than 24 hours.
Tuesday, May 13, 2008
Sunday, May 11, 2008
Q: What are your favorite books?
A: A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle; Light and Truth by Darryl Harris;
The Keystone by b.v. cheyenne
Q: What are your favorite TV shows?
A: CSI; Without a Trace; Monk
Q: What are you favorite movies?
A: Fiddler on the Roof; Jumanji; One Magic Christmas
Q: What are your least favorite movies?
A: Karate Kid; war with battles
Q: What are your favorite foods?
A: baked potato; bananas; fish fillet
Q: What are your least favorite foods?
A: Lima beans; Pumpkin pie; very spicy
Q: What are your favorite school subjects?
Q: What are your least favorite school subjects?
A: Physical Education
Q: What are your favorite topics?
A: The Last Days; Church History
Q: What are your least favorite topics?
Q: What are your favorite types of music?
A: Easy listening (can sing to); LDS
Q: What are your least favorite types of music?
A: Rap; Western
Q: What are your favorite songs?
A: Bring Them In by Nancy Hanson; Never a Better Hero by Kenneth Cope; Here I Am, Lord from The Savior of the World soundtrack; I Write the Songs by Barry Manilow; The Test by Janice Kapp Perry; Abinadi by Jenny Phillips; We Trust in Our God by Jenny Phillips
Q: What are your favorite colors?
A: purple; blue
Q: What are your least favorite colors?
A: yellow; orange
Q: What are your favorite animals?
A: dog; cat
Q: What are your least favorite animals?
A: wasps; hornets
Q: What are your favorite types of books?
A: mysteries; historical fiction; science fiction
Q: What are your least favorite types of books?
A: R-rated books
Q: Who are your favorite teachers?
A: Gerald Hilton
Q: What are your favorite things to do?
A: read; play games
Q: What are your least favorite things to do?
Q: What are your favorite book series?
A: The Work and the Glory
Q: Who are your favorite prophets?
A: Joseph Smith, Jr.; David O McKay; Gordon B Hinckley
Q: What are your favorite hymns?
A: “O My Father” (#292 from Hymns of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints); “The Lord Is My Shepherd” (#108 from Hymns of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints)
Q: What are your favorite animated movies?
A: Finding Nemo
Q: What are your hobbies?
A: crocheting; paint by number
Q: What are your talents?
A: good at math; mother; good cook; good at crocheting; knitting; reading fast
Q: How do your family members describe you?
A: weird; avoids confrontation; nice; stubborn; responsible; worrywart
Also for a Relief Society activity several months before she died, we each had a piece of paper we had written each of our names on, and passed them around the room, when everyone wrote something good about the person whose name was on the paper.
These are what people wrote about my mom:
It is wonderful to see you in the temple. The great mother you are is reflected in the affection your daughters show you.
Karen is a very gentle person.
Your ability to handle situations is amazing & you always come to church meetings.
You are such a nice person.
You are a very nice person and very friendly.
You are very reliable and helpful.
Amazing mother, willing to sacrifice everything
Karen, what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger, right? You are an amazing woman. Thanks for being a great supervisor! We love ya.
You have a tremendous ability to quietly overcome hardships.
You are a kind & sweet spirit.
Thanks for being so strong and kind.
Saturday, May 3, 2008
This one is another one of the Tree of Life. I didn't want to attempt to do pears this time, so I just did circles, but I have a sunset in the background. This one of the Tree of Life is the one I kept. I wanted to have a sunset in the background of mine, because I like the look of them so much (in case, you can't tell from most of my pastel pictures).This one is just a plateau with a sunset in the back. This is another one I kept.This one is yet another of the tree of life. This one I gave to my sister, Sara. She also wanted a copy of the tree of life.This is a picture of a path going between two trees and leading into the sunset. Yet another one I kept.This one is of two hills with a sunset in the background. This one Mom wanted to have, so I gave it to her.This is another of the Tree of Life. This one I also gave to Mom. She had liked the idea of using pears, so she wanted pears on the one I gave her.This one is just of grass with a sunset in the background.This one is not one of my Divine Nature project. It's a pastel picture I did, quite a bit after the other pastels. This one is another portrayal about the Iron Rod leading to the Tree of Life. In the Book of Mormon, it tells about a mist of darkness and lightening. So, that's what I portrayed in this one. You can also clearly see where the Iron Rod is in this picture.This is a drawing I did for my 9th grade Art class. My teacher gave each of us a tiny picture of a house in Bismarck that we had to enlarge with what's called the grid system. With the grid system, you lightly draw a grid on a picture you are going to enlarge and then you draw a larger grid on a blank sheet of paper and go from there. Here are my most recent pictures that I've done. I used this same grid system to enlarge that I really enjoyed when I drew this picture in the 9th grade (which I got an A on).Here's the first picture I tried. I printed this picture out in black and white and used the grid sytem to draw it. It's a picture of the Bismarck, North Dakota Temple. I was quite happy with how it turned out. Several people that I've shown it to, have complimented me on how real it looks. Someone even told me they thought it was a photo at first.
This one I tried is of my sister, Rachel's cat, Gizmo. I gave this one to her for Christmas after she got back from her mission in Russia.
This picture is of our cat, Cougar, who died in the fire that we had in our house 5 years ago. I'm amazed at how well it turned out. The drawing actually looks like he's actually giving me a sideways glance.
This last picture is of our dog, Sugar, who died from cancer of the blood quite unexpectedly while Rachel was on her mission. All of these pictures I printed out in black and white, so I could use the grid system to enlarge them properly.
Thursday, May 1, 2008
After that, Sara and I talked a while at the grave about Mom and I recorded that as well. I really enjoyed it and it was good just to talk about her. I felt really good about reading the poem at her grave. After we were finished with that, we spent about a half hour at the grave. We walked home from there.
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
Monday, April 28, 2008
Before the transfer, Sister Nicholls was feeling really sick. But I ended up going out with Sister Mustoe as her companion for the afternoon. Sister Nicholls was kind of babysat by Sister Lanouette (a member of the ward) while we were out teaching. I ended up going to a dinner appointment with Sister Mustoe, becuase of Sister Nicholls being so sick. It was really interesting. It gave me a good idea about what it would be like on my mission when being fed by members. The couple that fed us are inactives that moved here from somewhere else.
We also began a Young Single Adult Family Home Evening that we have just about every week in March. We decided to adopt Preach My Gospel as our FHE Lesson Manual. I gave the lesson on March 16th from the book, and i talked about the Restoration.
On March 18th, I went to BSC early. Sister Pitcher (one of my visiting teachers) wanted to set up a time when we could meet, and the only good time was before my Spanish class, which her husband suggested. He suggested that we meet in his office at BSC at around 8:30 am. That way we would be able to visit that month. Sister Pitcher and I met up at 8:30 in his office. It was really interesting. At around 9:50, I left the office, so I'd be able to get to my class, that Brother Pitcher teaches.
On March 27th, I went with the Sister missionaries. They had an appointment with someone named Douglas Tyler. Upon meeting me, he asked if I had a younger sister, to which I replied that I did. He said that he thinks he knows her. Then after we were seated, he said "Your sister's name is Sara, right?" To which, I again answered "yes". He said that he knew her from school. Upon later inquiry from Sara, he was apparently in a class with her and she had very briefly answered questions he had about the Church and The Book of Mormon when she was in the 9th grade. Apparently, he had been given 2 Books of Mormon from members of the church and had thrown both of them away, but they apparently made a big enough impact on him that when finding a Book of Mormon in a thrift store, he bought it, read it, and gained a testimony of it and decided he wanted to be baptized. He got baptized on April 12th, and both Sara and I attended. I felt that I really needed to go because I had ended up accompanying the Sister missionaries to teach him several times.
On Thursday, April 3rd, my dad and his wife were out of town for the week (since Saturday night), so since it was Sara and I, I decided that I wanted to have the Sister missionaries over for dinner. Sister Kozlowski can't eat gluten or dairy, so it kind of complicated what I could or couldn't make. I decided to make chicken with tater tots, tossed salad (even had a salad dressing she could have), olives, tomatoes and cucumbers (for the salad), and whole kernel corn. We also had Tropical Punch Kool-Aid. The dinner was a success they really enjoyed it. Afterwards, they were going to be able to go to Institute because Doug would be going, so they gave me a ride there.
On Thursday, April 10th, a girl in my Spanish class, Ruth, offered me a ride home after class. She asked me if Spanish was my last class for the day, and I told that it was the only class I was taking because I wanted to better prepare for a mission. Then we discussed exactly waht i meant by a mission. After that, she asked me what my church believes. I told her briefly about Joseph Smith wanting to know what xchurch to join and praying about it, the First Vision, the gold plates translated into the Book of Mormon. I also told her that we believe the Book of Mormon to be the word of God along with the Holy Bible and that Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost are 3 seperate beings. Then, she asked me what I believed the Atonement to be and I told her that it was Jesus suffering in the Garden, dying on the cross, and rising again from the dead, which initially I was able to state thanks to all the times I went out teaching with the Sister missionaries. I went out with the Sister missionaries at around 2 pm. Then, around 2:30-ish, we were invited to eat at Space Aliens, since I was with them I got to come, and I met Elder and Sister Cook, a missionary couple serving in the state. They had invited all the missionaries in the area (2 Elders in Bismarck, 2 Elders in Mandan, and 2 Sisters in Bismarck) and I got to come along and get fed because I was with the Sisters for the afternoon. It was really interesting; I had never been to Space Aliens before.
On Thursday, April 24th, I was out with the Sister missionaries, and they were being fed again that day, and I got to go with them. Elder and Sister Johnson (the CES missionaries) fed them.et Elder and Sister Johnson at Los Amigos, a Mexican Restaurant. It was really interesting, because that day in class, Brother Pitcher was saying that the class would go to Los Amigos and order in Spanish for extra credit, but I wasn't going to be able to go, because the time when most of the class could go is this Thursday at 7 pm, when I have Institute. So, i was going to miss out, but I ended up going there the same day it was brought up in class. It was also interesting that Elder and Sister Johnson were the ones feeding them, since the Sisters wouldn't be going to Institute that night, and Elder and Sister Johnson were going to be teaching it, so the Sisters ended up not taking me after all, since Elder and Sister Johnson would be going anyway.
Friday, January 18, 2008
Then, the following Sunday, January 6th, they came to get me at around 6:30 pm. After I got in their car, they joked that I was out with the missionaries twice in one week, might as well give me a name tag right now. We first went to see the Stetsons (Sister Stetson has recently been baptized) we watched the Living Scriptures animated movie "Samuel the Lamanite". After that, we went to another house where they gave a Bible to a Hispanic lady. Then we went to Mike's home and talked to him for a while. After that they took me home.
This last Sunday, January 13th, Sister Nicholls invited me to sit next to her in Relief Society. She introduced me to her new companion, Sister Mustoe (actually she's her New OLD companion, they had already been companions before). Then, we talked and I told them my schedule for this week and the pitiful number of days I was scheduled to work (only Tuesday and Wednesday) and then I told them that I didn't have class on Fridays. Hearing that, Sister Nicholls suggested "a day in the life of a missionary" and I agreed that that would be a good idea.
So, that's what I did today. They picked me up at 10:30 am and first, they had to stop off at their apartment for some reason, then we went to see about visiting some people. Then, we stopped at a less active member's home, Sadie Kraft, and talked to her for a while. After that, they took me tracting with them. The first apartment in this one building that we went to, a woman answered and let us in to talk with them. There were two girls that live in this apartment. Their names are Tia and Brandy. We talked to them for a while, gave them each a copy of the Book of Mormon and left after a bit. A couple doors down, we got invited in by another woman named Brandy. We talked to her for a while and they gave her a pamphlet with their names and phone number on the back. After a bit more tracting, we left for lunch. All the missionaries were invited to the North American Steak Buffet by Brother and Sister Riskedahl, including the CES missionaries, Elder and Sister Johnson. After that we stopped off back at their apartment so they could get more Books of Mormon. After that, we went to see more people and they ended giving 2 more Books of Mormon away. Then, we went back to their apartment for dinner. We had spaghetti with pasta sauce. I also had a hot chocolate. While there we took this picture. This is a picture of (from left to right) Sister Nicholls, me, and Sister Mustoe at their apartment before we ate dinner.
After dinner, we went out to visit more people, though a lot of people weren't home and then they brought me home. Overall, it was a very interesting and exciting day.
Saturday, January 12, 2008
We had also gotten some snacks and drinks for New Years Eve. We wanted to spend it with just the three of us. Especially because, New Years had always been a Mom thing. Every year we'd play games and eat snacks and drink pop with Mom. We also rented 4 movies and watched 2 of them on New Years Eve. The movies we watched were Stardust and Firehouse Dog both of these movies were really good. We also rented Hairspray, which is just plain weird, and Snow White: The Fairest of Them All, which was pretty strange but interesting.
Rachel left a week ago yesterday to go back to Utah since she had to be in Provo for a meeting on the next Monday and would be leaving for Jerusalem the next day.
Before Rachel left, we edited this poem I wrote weeks ago together. We plan on putting this one in the front of our mom's life history book. This is the poem I wrote:
My Mother Was My Hero
She wasn't very special
In the eyes of the rest of the world
But she was my hero
The one I always trusted.
I'd wake up each day
To the sound of her voice
Telling me to get up
And ready to go.
I wake up each day now
To the sound of her alarm;
The beeping is all I hear.
My mother was my hero
But now her voice is gone.
I'd walk in the door
And see her on the couch
She'd be sitting or lying,
Resting in her special spot.
Now, the house is empty
Her space on the couch is clear
She's nowhere in sight.
Her presence is no longer there.
My mother was my hero
But now she is gone.
Calling the house
Nearly every time
She'd answer right away
She was always there.
Calling the house now,
Her answer never comes
She is no longer there.
Another answers every time.
My mother was my hero
But now she can't be heard.
When a ride was needed
She'd be on her way
She would always make it
No matter what was going on.
Now, when I need a ride
She's not going to come
Someone else must come instead
She will never come again.
My mother was my hero
But now her presence is gone.
She took me to deliver papers
Whenever I requested
She'd take me everywhere
That I needed to go.
She'll never again take me
Wherever I need to go
I have to take the bus
Or get a ride from another.
My mother was my hero
But now she is here no more.
I would talk to her
About every little thing
Every single day
When I had something to say.
No longer can I talk to her
She's nowhere to be found
Now, I talk to Rachel
Since Mom is not around.
My mother was my hero
But now she's far away.
For people who knew her,
She was always there
If ever help was needed
She would immediately come
But now she is not coming
To those who are in need
She cannot come directly
Someone else must come instead
My mother was my hero
But now she is not nearby.
She may have been my hero
But now that she is dead
Her influence on her children
Will always be felt.
My mother is my hero
She will be forevermore.
In the future, when I have children
They will know of her:
Her smiling face
Her caring eyes
Her loving words
My children will know my hero
Her memory will live on.