Tuesday, February 17, 2015

A Semi-Annual Update

Well, how have you been? I've been caught up in the day-to-day of life. Moving, then not moving. Packing like a mad woman and then not packing like a mad woman. Enjoying new grandchildren--joy and rejoicing and all of the good stuff. Serving in my calling, feeling the love and partaking of the wisdom of amazing Relief Society women. Allowing for the mourning process of leaving this place I have come to love. I think I am an East Coaster somewhere deep down, even though I am born and bred of Pocatello, Idaho and parts thereabout. I have sent some sobbing prayers to heaven asking why I had to come to love the people and the history and beauty here and now I have to leave. But you know I also sent sobbing prayers to heaven when I had to leave Washington and then again California so I'm starting to get the idea that I am supposed to be learning something here. Perhaps that there are amazing people yet to meet and love and vistas ahead to appreciate and more history to be learned.

Luckily, I am an (annoying) optimist so I am looking on the bright side.
Which is a little easier with the bone-chilling arctic weather we have been 
enduring here as of late. 
California sunshine, here I come.


In the meantime, we have two offers on the house and we are just waiting for the paperwork and etc. to work their way through the various bureaucracies. We'll see which one comes out on top.

While we are waiting, I offer a pictorial timeline for your viewing pleasure:

I started taking pictures of the places I love around here so I can hold them
in my heart and see them in my picture file too.

This is the unique, historical building that is home to our
local paper: The Newtown Bee.

The bee on the roof and the bee on the door...just... too awesome.

Christmas came and went....Shane and I felt the need to have a
real tree this year. Christmas Spirit was in short supply with 
everyone spread out across the country.
 We brought home a beautiful, fresh tree and
the amazing pine smell was magical.

We spent actual Christmas in the Golden State. Here you see our
Christmas Eve dinner. Andy saved the day by finding a beautiful spot on the 
beach right next to this awesome diner. So we enjoyed our yummy
food as we watched the sun go down over the ocean.

A perfect California Christmas...

...was made even better with some family time talking with
our missionaries. Sister Gale serving in the Illinois, Chicago West Mission

Elder Gale serving in the California, Los Angeles Mission. We were able to get
everyone on our Google Hangout and I loved listening to the family banter and the
grandchildren chiming in. Sam gave us a sampling of his Spanish and they both
shared experiences and testimonies. 

A few days after Christmas, we got to see family and friends in our
old ward in Ramona, California. We were there for the very special
occasion of the Blessing of our precious Mabel.
Look how adorable she is in the dress her Mama wore.
We enjoyed our time there and the Horton family hosted us
for dinner and entertainment. 
They are always fun to hang out with.

A few weeks after Christmas,
I zipped down to North Carolina for some daughter/grandbaby time. 
I love that we get to be friends now. 
One of the many rewards of mothering awesome kids.

Cuteness Alert! 

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Birthday Boy!

Happy Birthday to the Hubs!

Let's take a little walk down memory lane in celebration...
well at his age, it's a LONG walk :)

This was actually just a random group of pictures hanging out in my blog archive.
His complete picture history is stored on the laptop that melted down.
Shayla assures me she will rescue all the pictures on it when she gets home.
So, in the meantime  enjoy...


Prom Date!
Rocking the quintessential 70's powder-blue Tux...

Handsome Scholarship Recipient!


Missionary on P-day!

Missionary serving as best man at a wedding!

Engaged to the woman of his dreams!
(Right honey?)

BYU Graduate!

MBA Graduate!

Business Man!

Husband, Dad, PopPop...
We love you!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Out of the Mouth of the Truthist

We had the missionaries over for dinner yesterday. Shane doesn't love being the last one at home and having to be social in situations where it is just me and him and other adults, but he was very mature about it and was a good host at dinner.

 After dinner they shared a spiritual thought with us. They talked about the power of the Book of Mormon for changing lives and then asked us our thoughts on that. I didn't want Shane to feel pressured to say something so I shared a few experiences and then I looked at Shane and realized he had something to say. So I said, "I kind of blathered on there--did you have something to add?"

And he said:
"When I was 11 years old, I decided to read the Book of Mormon on my own. I read at night when it was very quiet and I could really take it in. As I was reading, it felt like a prayer. Heavenly Father was speaking to me through what I was reading and I knew it was true. All of it. That is when I got my  testimony of the scriptures and prophets and everything. I could feel it and I just knew it."

I managed to not embarrass him by bawling my eyes out. 
But it was hard. 

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

A Conversation With the Truthist

Now that Shane is in college, I get the joy of spending quality time with him on the drive back and forth to Waterbury. It affords me the opportunity to hear his startling insights on life.
Like this conversation we had today:

Shane: "School sucks." (because he had homework and a test to study for)

Me: "It's better than being dumb."

Shane: "But if ignorance is bliss, then I am being denied my Constitutional right to the pursuit of happiness if I have to go to school."

Monday, November 10, 2014


 My comfortable little world keeps shifting and I am doing my best to keep up. I am supposed to move to California. But my house hasn't sold so I am still in Connecticut. My last homeschooler started college classes this Fall and put me out of a job I have loved for the past decade or so. Shane growing up is also putting me out of the career that has required every last ounce of love, creativity, patience, energy, and gumption I could muster for the last 30 odd years: full-time mom.

So, what next?

A while back I went into New York City to attend a career workshop put on by the church. It was held in this LDS meetinghouse in the Chelsea area. A territory I was not familiar with. It is always an adventure finding my way around NYC and any new area tests my driving and navigating skills to the limits.

The workshop promised to "Make negatives into positives" among other things. I figured 30 years out of the regular work force might be a bit of a negative to overcome. And maybe my lack of a degree or any other serious training or skill. On my drive to the city I contemplated the irony that I had worked at Bradshaw Auto Parts and then  did house sitting/babysitting and then ran a daycare in our home while Andy earned his "Three Degrees of Glory" as I like to call them. Then I pushed and prodded and nagged and cheered and hammered out essays and faxed last minute transcripts and drove apathetic scholars to early morning ACT tests, not to mention the relentless determination required to get each child to early morning seminary with the required attendance for BYU--all in an effort to get our 8 children into college-- where so far they have earned or will earn their degrees of various sorts. You can add to that the recurring  panic I went through when I first started homeschooling as I contemplated how much responsibility I had taken on for the future success of our younger five children. At least once a month I felt overwhelmed by the dread that I might be ruining their lives. It was great motivation to keep The Gale Academy of Classical Education running at a pace to prepare our scholars for higher education. So somewhere in this I had a point...

Always a bridesmaid, never a bride.
Or always a determined supporter, never a college graduate...

I have teased Shane for many years that I am going to follow him to college and finish my degree. He just rolls his eyes but I think it worries him a little that I might actually do that. 
I would like to, but I will have to find gainful employment before I can make that happen.

I did my best at the workshop to prepare my Power Statements and outline my skills and strengths. I was sitting amongst some pretty heavy hitters in the education and employment categories. A professional opera singer who had sung for operas in Sweden and Austria. She had since directed an award-winning choir and was looking for a position teaching voice and choir. An entrepreneur from India who had run a big successful business there. He had an engineering degree.  A woman from Spain who was struggling with English was a talented graphic designer. It was a supportive group and I learned a lot from them. The church has a great employment program and the people who were running the workshop had a very helpful understanding and perspective on the varied, unique circumstances of each participant. 

I was grateful to be among people who valued my chosen career up to that point. They guided me through the process of taking the skills and talents that had served me well as a mom and home educator and turning that experience into a resume. I was also grateful to see that my years of service  as Relief Society President, Stake Young Women Presidency and Girls Camp and Cub Scout volunteering were all considered proof that I was a productive and capable human being. 

It is a new phase of life for me and I am ready to jump in. 
As soon as the house sells. 
And we get moved to wherever we are going to live in California. 
And I get a job. 

Friday, November 7, 2014

Bouncing Baby Boy

Announcing the newest Gale Grandchild:
Remington Colt Gale
Born October 27th
7 lbs. 15 oz.

He made his grand entrance 3 weeks early--with that weight it was 
a tender mercy for Mama Adrianna that he didn't go to his full term size!
Her water broke early in the morning and when they got to the hospital 
they saw that he was breach (feet first!) and did a c-section.
So he was out into the big wide world pretty quickly and caught
us all by surprise. 

Baby Remi with his Papa--so sweet!

And with his Mama on the day he went home.

Adorable Baby Yawn!

He seems pretty happy with life so far...

Welcome to the world little one!
I am patiently waiting for my time with him--
I can't wait to smoosh those chubby cheeks!

P.S. If you want to see a cute picture of baby Spencer for comparison purposes, go here.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Fresh From Heaven

We welcomed a new little grandbaby to the Gale Family:

Mabel Sienna was born to Seth and Taylor
last Saturday morning.
She weighed 6 lb. 4 oz.

Mama Taylor had a short labor and delivery and the 
proud parents were holding their sweet daughter seven hours
after Taylor's water broke in the wee hours of Saturday morn--

So Precious! And look at that hair!

Mother and daughter

Aunt Siara stopped by to visit.

Here's a blurry, pixelated picture of Seth as a newborn--
just to make note of the hair similarity...

...it was cropped from this awesome picture of Seth being
welcomed by his older siblings. 

I have to wait a couple of weeks to welcome this newest little one in person--her early arrival caught us all a little off guard. I am dying to get her in my arms and start the Nana spoiling!