I can't believe that June is almost over! The weather has been so crazy this month. So our house has been up for sale 8 days now and it has been shown 6 of those 8 days, so I have to get my house clean and keep it clean while it is being shown. Chase and I really need to find an apartment soon. I just hate the thought of moving. It is hard work to move and so I guess I am procrastinating. Since we have Tinkerbell that makes it even harder to find a place that will accept pets and also I want the place to not be near a busy street and have a yard that she can go out and play in. She doesn't even use a litterbox anymore and goes to the bathroom outside so a yard with dirt would be lovely. My brother and sister-in-law are moving up to Pocatello after Ericka has her baby and I am really sad. I have been lucky to have all of my siblings living in Cache Valley and now I won't be as fortunate. It is good for them I am sure, but I am sad that I won't get to see them as much and Camden and the new baby. Chase is working hard for his dad and comes home late and exhausted. I feel bad that he works so hard for me and since I haven't been working much, I feel extremely guilty. I went to work today for a half day and it was good. It is just hard for me to not get anxiety about going back to work full time. The truth is that I don't want to work full time, I have liked being home as a housewife. I am hoping that I can go back to USU or BATC in the fall and hurry and get my degree done and then I can put Chase through school. He seems determined to do his dream and I can't seem to change his mind. He wants to become a herpetologist and own snakes and milk them for venom to sell anti-venom. I am terrified of snakes. So I am not sure how well this will work out. Maybe he will have to own a lab somewhere that has the snakes there and so we won't have any at our home. This last weekend we went camping up on my Grandpa Clarks land in Clarkston. We set up our tent and had tinfoil dinners and just had a great time just the two of us. We love camping and being outdoors. Chase also brought a few guns and we shot them. I shot his dad's 9 mm pistol and his brothers .44 cal revolver. They were pretty fun to shoot. Chase keeps wanting me to take hunter's ed so I can go and hunt with him. I want to do this but it is just finding the time. I guess we will see.

Father's Day

Since Father's Day is coming up this weekend, I just wanted to post something about the fathers in our life-

I have the most wonderful Dad ever! He is always so willing to help Chase and I out when we need it, no questions asked. He is an example to us by serving others. He is a counselor in the Logan 60th singles ward and he is so good with the young single people there. I am proud of his accomplishments he has made in his life. He is so diligent in exercising. He has many medals and awards from running and cycling over the past 20 years or so. How many children can say that their dad did the Ironman in Hawaii? Or have ran like 15 marathons? And this is all after he was over 35. So many times when I have had a problem or was down, he offered to give me a blessing and every time I said yes, it always made things better. He is such a good man and worthy priesthood holder. To watch my mom and him together now all of the kids are out of the house, it is so cute! He is so sweet to my mother and takes care of her. I just can't say enough about my father, Dan Cooper. I love you daddy, Happy Father's Day!

Next, my other Father in my life is my father-in-law Ken Volkman. This man is such a great example to Chase and I. He always is concerned for the both of us and tries to do all that he can to help us out. This man is the hardest worker I have ever met. He works so much and so hard to provide for his family, he doesn't stop if he doesn't feel well or anything. We thank him for all that he has done for us there, by letting us work for him to earn some extra money. He is the best example of service in our lives. He will go out and help different people in the ward, just because. He will drop everything to help another. I am just so proud of him in all of his actions. He served in the military for many years and was a green beret. He served our country and we thank him for that. He is an outdoors man. He loves to hunt and has hunted bison, elk, moose, deer and wild turkey and many more I don't know about probably. I always feel spoiled and special at Chase's parents house because I am the only girl and I like it that way. But I will have to share once Zach and Trevor get married. We love you so much dad and Happy Father's Day!

Also wanted to mention our Grandfathers as well. Chase's Grandpa Denton is so much fun to be around. He can always make a funny joke to lift our spirits up. He works as a sealer in the temple and we think that is so neat that he is doing great service in the temple for others. He loves the Jazz and to hunt and spend time with his family. He is from Arkansas so he says a few words funny. He always tells us great stories of growing up on the farm in Arkansas and he also is a WWII veteran.

My Grandpa Clark is so special because he just radiates the spirit. He has had an amazing life and has definitely put in his fair share of service. About 20 years ago, he started the Martin Harris pageant and served as president for almost all of the years. He helps set up the stage every year to this day and pulls the set behind his tractor. He is so spiritual and always has a good story to tell. He loves to hunt deer and pheasants with his sons and grandsons. I have heard him share many stories from the railroad when he worked as an engineer. He is always more than willing to help his family in every obstacle they may face. We love him so much and hope that he lives to be 100! Happy Father's Day.

Grandpa Volkman lives in Nebraska and I have only met him a few times, but from what I know he has raised a good son. He is funny with the different comments he makes. His health isn't the greatest and gets around with a walker. His laugh is infectious and lights up the room. Chase said that he learned so much about working when he would go out to the farm to visit his grandparents growing up. He said that grandpa was always working on the farm and taught him a few things. We hope he is doing well and miss him so much. Happy Father's Day.

I just hope that we can all thank our fathers in our lives for all that they do for us. They sacrifice so much to make us happy and see that we are alright. Happy Father's Day!

Work vs. Hard Work

Since I've been on a work siesta for the past week and a half to get my medicines working right, my lovely wonderful husband and his father decided that I could dedicate my time to earning some money in the 'family business.' I had just gotten done at the doctor's office and picked up some perscriptions for Chase and I, and I decided to phone my hubby and see if he needed the meds I picked up for him. He said that he did and so I got the location of where he and his father were working and drove on up. (Sidenote: the area they were working in is so beautiful, It is called Green Canyon Estates it is just at the mouth of Green Canyon in North Logan. I think the Address is something like 1900 N and 2600 East.)

(Subscript again: I had dated a boy in high school that took me on a couple of dates up Green Canyon. It was so much fun we had a big group of people and went up and hiked around and had a cookout, I thought that was a really fun time in my life. These boys in high school were really good boys that were so creative and knew how to have good clean fun. I miss not being able to go and do fun things like that again. I think your attitude and decisions can really change depending on what kind of people you hang around with. Thinking on that note personally, I just remember always feeling happy and joyful around these people. I felt closer to God and Christ. I felt such a strong testimony in my life when I hung around these people and this boy in particular.

I wish I could be more like this now in my life. I know I decide my actions and my behaviors and I am responsible for how close I am spiritually to God, etc. I just must be a pessimist in real life. If anyone has any suggestions on how to always have a good positive attitude and spirituality, please let me know, I could use this.

Back to my original story:

I drove up to the site and apparently my husband and his father thought I should work with them for the rest of my day to earn some money. Oh and the family business is KGV Landscaping for those who don't know. So I had my nice, newer crocs on and no socks with these fleece sweat pants and a t-shirt on. So, needless to say, I didn't feel 100% dressed for the job. I would have liked my older running shoes on with long socks and some older levi's and a jog bra and a older t-shirt, but it would have taken like 30 minutes to drive home to Smithfield and back again with the lovely construction going on in Smithfield. Oh, and those who think Landscaping is a piece of cake job, come try it. I dare you. It is not the "oh, I am mowing the lawn on a riding lawn mower type-job" or "just planting a bunch of plants" job either. One thing that I truly admire about my in-laws and husband is that they really know how to work hard and I respect them for it. My father-in-law in particular. He works 16 hour days like 6 days a week and he is over 50, so he always can outwork us, even his sons, who probably wouldn't agree with me on this. I just really think of him as the best example of work-ethic and hard work and service for others. I love him so much for taking care of us and providing for his family.

So I set to work at this newly built house by Dr. and the Mrs. Garg, although it isn't the pain doctor Garg in the Specialty Hospital or the pediatrician female Doctor Garg, so I am guessing the Gastroenterologist, although I have never met or been to this Dr. Garg as I have seen the others. This job was a big one, I am guessing that it was around a $50,000 just for landscaping the whole property. The backyard slopes up really steeply so what we did is put a bunch of large rocks in and created like two levels and planted trees and bushes and then laid down mulch/bark to cover it all. What Chase and I worked on was putting in a drip system for all of these plants on the two levels that were steep so that the Garg's wouldn't have to water their plants individually, it would just come on automatically like a sprinkler system would. I had no gloves and was put to work putting holes in the big pipe with an attachment and attaching a piece to a small flexible pipe and then attaching an end piece which determines how much water will be going to each plant either 1 gallon per hour, 2-gallon, 5-gallon etc. The larger the gallon is for the bigger plants like trees would need more water, right? (My teachers always thought I was really great at writing and I quite enjoyed it, but sometimes they thought I rambled on and gave too much information. Remember those kids in high school who always complained about writing a 3, 5 or 10 page paper, like "how am I going to write enough to get all of the pages complete?" type thing, well, I was just the opposite. I would always write too much, or have too much information and would go well over the alloted amount, so I had to find a way to cut out parts in each of the papers I wrote. I believe my sister Denise is the same way and could agree with me at this point. See? I got off-track again!)

Well, this job was not very fun and not exactly labor intensive but was more hands-on finger intensive which was not fun. My first two fingers, were all calloused and numb and my wrists up to my shoulders hurt so bad by days end. So I was kneeling, sitting, etc going along in this mulch which reacted with my fleece pants like velcro and so each tree or shrub I would come to, I would have to kneel down/sit on my bum and attach the stupid pipe and then stand, brush my pants off from the bark, and walk a couple of steps to the next one. Oh, if I only had Levi's. And socks. Needless to say, I ended up getting bark down my pants, in my underwear and in my shoes. Those of you who know me, know I do not like my feet getting dirty. A picture of me as a two year old in San Diego can attest to that. Mom and Dad had me on the beach and mom was carrying me along the sand and thought I would like to get down and walk along it as well in my bare feet. She put me down with my shoes off and put my little feet in the sand. I immediately didn't like it and began to cry. To this day, I don't really like sand on my feet, it really bothers me because you can never quite get it all off when you put your shoes back on from the beach or lake until you get home to shower. I HATE sand! I love California and the beaches, but not the sand. So the same goes with this lovely bark in my shoes, I HATED IT in my shoes every step I took all of the way. I really enjoyed working with Chase and he kept tellling me how much he loved me working together with him (maybe we'll take over the family business Dad!).

At the end of the day, I really got a wake up call on how hard of a job landscaping is. Now there is work (which I do at Conservice, thank heavens for that glorious job) and there is hard work (like landscaping). I really enjoyed being outdoors all day (that is one perk I don't have) and hearing sounds of nature all around, but I just honestly felt like I was going to die by 5:30 or so. I started around 10. Oh and one thing I forgot, SUNSCREEN. Apparently the Volkman boys have some strange immunity to the sun, they don't really burn easily and they just tend to go really dark brown. One thing I pray for my children is that they get the Volkman dark skin and be lucky with that. I know Great-Grandma Thompson would be saying how beautiful ivory skin (pasty-white) is and how much we should value it. Denise and I share this common white skin. We burn, burn some more and then go back to being bright white again. No summer tan for me, especially for my legs.

So while I enjoyed working with my husband and being outdoors, my mouth was soured because I burned my neck, ears, face, and arms. And I was wearing long short sleeves, so now I really have the farmers tan going on now. Three days later: I am still suffering from this awful sunburn. Words of advice: wear sunscreen. Although, from this experience, I did learn the value of hard work and how much my Father-in-law and Chase's work really is. From time to time, I would help on a big project like planting flowers, shoveling dirt around, or laying sod (I am not sure if that was harder or what I did on this job).

I think the generations today really don't understand what hard work is. Our grandparents and forefathers didn't have it so easy as we do. They really did work hard to earn a living and make a home. Anyways, so here is my long post--I didn't know how fun blogging really is.