Friday, June 24, 2011

A love affair with office supplies

I am in the process of trying to assimilate all of my Moms things into my home and if you knew my Mom you probably understand that this is not an easy feat!

Today I unpacked 5 boxes of pens, pencils, rulers, calculators, books, white out, sharpies, tape, a zillion organizers, and anything else you could possible think of in the office supply department. My Mom had a thing for office that I inherited.

Growing up I loved when the fall was coming and my Mom would take us school supply shopping. Forget clothes - I wanted highlighters and new pencils! I loved to go up and down the aisles of Farr's Stationary store and pick out my notebook, my pencil holder, dividers, a new magic rub eraser, and of course a couple of mechanical pencils with their reloading lead that came in the small tubes. I loved to go home and put it all together.

I felt some of that excitement today as I unpacked all of the extra office supplies that she had collected. Yes, I think collected is an appropriate word - my Mom did collect office supplies. She was the best boy scout ever - Be prepared - and she was prepared for anything and everything!

Everything finally has found a home and is labeled and organized and it feels so good. Almost like the first day of school all over again.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

33 years ago today....

You gave me life.

And so much more.

Love you,

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

In your shoes

Dear Mom,

One of the first things I packed of yours to bring back to Utah with me was your walking shoes. I broke out one of your favorite books on Eating Clean this week as well as laced up your shoes.

Chocolate chip cookies sure taste good to grief,
but running feels better for grief.

Thanks for the good example you were the last couple of years on being healthy!

Love you. Miss you.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Prepared with care

My Dad was impressed with Loma Vista Memorial Park on Memorial Day when he took my Mom flowers. All of the veterans graves were marked. In my Dad's words, "I become more and more impressed with Loma Vista all of the time." I would agree. Everything in my experience with them has been so dignified.

(I'm pretty sure my Mom is stoked she is next to a veteran)

I was sent this article by a dear friend that I wanted to share.


Putting up 3,800 crosses and an equal number of U.S. flags at veterans’ graves takes quite a bit of work. To do it, nearly 500 volunteers showed up at Loma Vista Memorial Park on Saturday, getting the job done in just a few hours. Marking the graves for the Memorial Day service is a tradition in Fullerton that dates back more than 70 years, when the Chapman family first did it.

Aidan Haines, 7, with Cub Scout Troop 234, puts a flag on a veteran’s grave at Loma Vista Memorial Park in Fullerton in preparation for Memorial Day. A service will take place at 10 a.m. Monday at the cemetery, 70 1 E. Bastanchury Road.

Volunteers serve those who served. Each year, thousands of people attend the Memorial Day service at Loma Vista Memorial Park. When they get there, they’re greeted with thousands of U.S. flags and crosses or Stars of David planted at the gravesite of each veteran.

Putting up those 3,800 flags and crosses takes a lot of coordination and even more volunteer effort. They don’t go up overnight; in fact, the setup and cleanup for the Memorial Day service takes a week.

One of the busiest days was Saturday, when nearly 500 volunteers braved chilly winds and a fog-smeared sky to place the flags and crosses. “That’s the beauty of this event. Once someone comes once, they’ll come out here again,” said Ed Paul with the American Veterans Memorial Association. “With a lot of families, you’ll see the grandfather, son and grandson all out here.”

The association, made up of about 20 local residents and representatives of service organizations, exists just to put on the Memorial Day event. Its members and volunteers make sure the crosses are set out at each section of the cemetery on Friday. On Saturday, they handed out laminated maps marking veterans’ plots and the flags to be placed there. On Tuesday, volunteers will take down the flags and crosses, and on Wednesday, volunteers will iron the flags to prepare them for next year’s event.

So many volunteers showed up on Saturday that the work was done in less than three hours. Groups of all denominations spread out methodically, enthusiastically searching for names on markers. Boy Scouts stood around graves and saluted the deceased after planting flags.

“It’s being of service to people who were of service to us,” said Kristen Nelsen of Fullerton. She navigated the graves with flags, along with other members of the Fullerton Woman’s Club and the La Habra Woman’s Club. Nelsen doesn’t have any veterans in her family, but wanted to come out to the cemetery in homage. “It’s an honor,” she said, to mark the veterans’ plots.

Other members of the group swept the grave markers with small brooms. “We brush them and clean them, so they’re all nice and tidy,” said Marilyn Huff of La Habra. “It’s a woman thing to clean,” she joked.

Fullerton High School sophomore Graeme Huntley also helped out Saturday. He and nearly 20 of his fellow Junior ROTC cadets at the school had spent part of their week repairing hundreds of the crosses and painting 2,800 of them. “It was hard work,” said Huntley, 16. “But it was worth it. We wanted to honor our veterans.”

The event started with Fullerton’s Chapman family in 1939, when flags and crosses were placed at the graves of some 50 veterans. Now the number of deceased vets grows by hundreds each year. The Memorial Day service takes place at 10 a.m. Monday at the cemetery, 701 E. Bastanchury Road.

On Tuesday, volunteers are needed to take down the flags and crosses, starting at 7:30 a.m. On Wednesday, volunteers are needed to iron the flags starting at 8:30 a.m. at the Red Cross building, 1155 Lemon St. Volunteers need to bring an iron and a towel. The association is also seeking donations, which would be used to purchase crosses and flags. Donations may be sent to the association at P.O. Box 3451, Fullerton CA

Julian Landeros, 7, of Cub Scout Troop 1 223 hustles to place flags on veterans’ graves in preparation for Memorial Day.

Lauren Sutherlin, 9, places a flag on a veteran’s grave Saturday at Loma Vista Memorial Park in Fullerton.