Wednesday, June 29, 2011

My Grandma Lichfield ... An amazing woman!

One of my favorite pictures from our wedding day (May 22, 1993)... The kiss - by Grandma & Grandpa Lichfield.
She passed away yesterday and below are a few memories ...

For my Grandma Lichfield –

Brigham City, Utah -

First, I remember as a young girl anticipating the trips to Brigham City, Utah to spend time at Grandma’s house. Her house was so magical to me and I can still smell the flowers leading up to her front porch and see the beautiful garden in the back yard. And whenever I see a mint bush – I think of her and the smell of fresh mint by her backdoor.

She lived right across the street from Kentucky Fried Chicken and whenever we stayed there she made sure we enjoyed a big bucket of hot chicken and biscuits as part of the stay. The chicken always tasted better at her house.

Grandma was wonderful at making children feel welcome! She had special toys up in the closet for us to sleep and snuggle with during our stay. She also had a fun bedroom upstairs with twin beds all made up for us to sleep in.

I’ll always remember bubble baths at her house and the pink flamingo painting that was right next to her tub. I also remember the pig collection she and Grandpa had and how fun it was to visit and check out each one.

I remember taking creative adventure walks with her. She would give me a brown lunch bag and tell me to collect stuff along the way. When we returned home she would help me assemble the items onto drift wood and create a wonderful work of art. Those art pieces sat in her kitchen cabinet for years and reminded me each time I visited of walks and fun we enjoyed together.

I loved looking through her picture books. They were full of family memories and fun times. I loved to have her tell me about each picture and what was going on.

One summer, Grandma taught me how to make roses out of frosting. She could make the most beautiful wedding cakes and she taught me some of her secrets. I remember eating my frosting rose and drinking ‘liquid sunshine’ out of her emerald green cups. In case you are wondering, liquid sunshine was her name for orange juice!

Grandma made the best pancakes! I loved to smother them with her peach jam and sit at the table and listen to Grandpa tell stories.

Grandma had the best hugs – she was always the last one to let go.

When Grandma & Grandpa came to our house to visit -

Grandma and Grandpa made everything fun! When they came to our house to visit (in Richland, WA) they wore matching travel shirts and would take us out to Pizza Hut for dinner.

When I was in high school, they teased me about ‘boyfriends’ and called me ‘Twitterpatted’ …

Mocking Bird Hill in Bedford, Wyoming -

Grandma and Grandpa had this wonderful place in Bedford, Wyoming that they built for family gatherings. I remember a big Lichfield family reunion there and how wonderful it was to all be together.

Family was the most important thing to both of them. And I feel so blessed to be a part of it.

The killdeer bird -

One particular story that I hold dear with Grandma occurred when I was quite young. We were in Wyoming attending a family reunion and my sister, Amy, and I were walking with Grandma. She knew all the names of the flowers and taught us all about the beauty around us. We happened upon some horses that had their legs chained together and we asked her why they were wearing those awful things? She told us they were called hobbles and that kept the horses from running too far away. We thought the word hobbles was so funny! Our walk continued and we happened upon some little birds. One was lying on the ground – barely moving. We picked it up and asked her to make it live and be healthy. She gently scooped the little killdeer into her hands and tucked it inside her coat. It didn’t make it and died in her coat. She helped us gently bury the little bird and told us that everything that is born must eventually pass on…

A little note from me -

Grandma, thank you for the beautiful life you lived and for all the love you showed me. I know that you are in a better place – surrounded by people you love and who love you.

I will miss you and I love you more than words can say. And I can still feel the hugs and kisses you so freely gave! I hope those never fade …

Your granddaughter,
Wendy Lichfield Christensen
June 29, 2011

Monday, June 27, 2011

Summertime ...

Can't wait to write love notes in the sand ...
Looking forward to picking cherries in Yakima ... (That's me, the second fruit from the left)!!

Lighthouses - they move me! I can hardly wait to visit this one in July ...
The Ocean - beautiful, vast, inspiring ... ahhhhh I can already hear the waves, feel the sand on my feet and taste the s'mores on the beach.
Butterflies, chalk art and summer - they just go together.
I hope to bump into a few flea markets and bring home a few treasures from the road.
Road trips - nothing like them (especially when you turn the corner and find yourself face to face with a big, gorgeous mountain!)
Check that out - Mt. Rainier.
Afton, Wyoming - SO hoping to spend some time here in July!! Fingers crossed.
Summertime - full of wonder, awe and adventure!
Cheers to the places we go, people we meet and the new things we learn, see and experience ...


Ingredients -
• 1 cup(s) sugar
• 6 large lemons, seeded and juiced
4. Bring the sugar and 1 cup of water to a boil in a small saucepan. Stir occasionally until sugar dissolves completely. Cool.
5. Stir the syrup, unstrained lemon juice, and 4 cups of cold water together in a large pitcher.
6. Chill. Serve over ice.

Monday, June 20, 2011

A Saturday in Seattle ...

My husband and I took a little getaway trip to Seattle to celebrate his birthday ... Yup, it was raining, yup - the traffic was crazy and yup - we had a great time together!
I love Pike Place Market - Full of life, energy and vibrant flavors, colors and people!
I love to stop at the fish stand and see the guys throw the fish and chant their 'fishing chants' ...
We stopped for fresh doughnuts (1 dozen tossed into a brown paper bag sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar) ---- YUM!
The flowers are gorgeous ...

And so romantic. I love to see all the ladies walking around the market carrying their fresh flowers and their guys holding their hands... ohh la la la. :)
Not pictured: The macaroni and cheese from Beechers ... It is so good. If you ever find yourself in Seattle at Pike Place Market, get in line and get a tub of this ultra yummy stuff. And don't worry about having an umbrella - sometimes getting caught in the rain is the best way to spend a Saturday in Seattle. :)

Thursday, June 16, 2011

The first piano recital ...

Tonight my daughter has her first piano recital. We are really excited to hear her play and enjoy the evening of 'music' together. I'm hoping she continues to practice and improve because I've got a few favorites I can hardly wait to request: A mom can hope and dream right?! :)

As for now ... we're loving every sound coming from the piano and her little fingers! Way to go Lauren.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


Never give up on anybody. Miracles happen every day.
~ H. Jackson Brown, Jr. (Life's Little Instruction Book)

Monday, June 13, 2011

A 'Toy Story' Moment ...

It's the first day of summer ... my kids are home and there's really not too much officially planned. Days like today are rare and I enjoy them!

We decided we could use the day to go through the toys and clothes and make a run to Goodwill with all the unwanted items. We were doing great until we reached the bin of stuffed animals.

There is something about stuffed animals that pulls at the heart strings. We decided we were not going to be emotional about the 'dejunk' and just started tossing toys into the big bag.

Everything came to a halt when I grabbed a little Beanie Baby mouse named Cheezer. This little guy was once white (like the one pictured above) but due to years of love is now worn and grey. His little black eyes are scratched almost to clear now and he's not so fuzzy.

No emotion - I was just going to toss it into the bag. Nope, couldn't do it. I looked into those little mouse eyes and was immediately transported back to the doctor's office and was sitting next to my son, Kaleb, who was scared out of his mind for the unavoidable shots that were coming next.

I looked into his big blue eyes and told him to be tough and that the shots would be over soon. I also promised him we could go for ice-cream and pick out a new Beanie Baby pet if he was really brave.

He was brave and only shed a couple of tears and Cheezer (the little mouse) became his new best friend.

It was a Tory Story 3 moment - only I couldn't let the mouse go. No, he stays with me and someday when Kaleb's son or daughter needs to be really brave, I'll remind them of their dad and his little mouse that brought him years of magical fun.

Happy summer and cheers to the little moments that matter!

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Saturday, June 04, 2011


I bumped into this photo tonight and had to smile! I would love to have a clothes line in the backyard.

I remember spending summers as a kid with my Grandma and we would hang out the clothes together on her big spinning clothes line and talk about how she used to do her laundry by hand. Those are sweet memories!

I think tonight my dreams will be of fresh, white laundry blowing dry in the cool mountain air of Wyoming and stories of days long gone told by my Grandma.

Friday, June 03, 2011

Nail polish and the 7 Habits ...

I have one daughter. She is 8. She is smart, funny, kind and the happiest person I know! I could go on and on about how wonderful she is. I won't. I will however, share a little moment from tonight.

It's 10:00 on a Friday night ... She sees the book I am reading in my room and asks what it is about. I inform her that I'm reading and enjoying very much - "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People" by Stephen R. Covey. I have always talked to her like she is older than she is so I launch into a little book summary about the 7 habits. She is completely enthralled with every word and I stop and ask - "Does this make sense to you?"

Lauren: YES! I live my life just like the effective people mom.

I had to agree and in that little moment - I made a mental note like this:
Remember this moment Wendy ... because before too long she'll be out on the Friday nights and someone else will get to enjoy her vibrant, positive and kind personality.

And I tucked the moment away in one of my very favorite mind files called: Moments with Lauren and we went back to doing our nails and discussing Habit 1: Be Proactive / Principles of Personal Vision. (7 Habits book page 65).

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Proactive and Reactive Language ... what's your style?

I'm currently reading "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People" by Stephen R. Covey.
This book is really amazing and with every word I find myself having little 'aaa ha' moments. As I was reading his segment about listening to our language (page 78), I couldn't help but think about the day the construction crew showed up at my house to install all the new windows.

Our old house (that we have been fixing up for over a year now) was built in 1944 and the windows had never been replaced. I can't begin to explain in words how excited I was about getting new windows. They truly transformed the place! And the view was significantly better with the new, clean glass.

Now back to Covey's book ... In this particular segment I'm reading he talks about the importance of listening to the language we use. There are two types of language patterns. The first is Reactive Language (this is the type used by people who often use excuses and choose not to claim responsibility for their choices). Some reactive phrases are: There's nothing I can do. That's just the way I am. He makes me so mad. They won't allow that. I have to do that. I can't. I must. If only.

The second type of language is Proactive Language... (this is a more empowering language used by people committed to being responsible for their choices and actions). Some phrases are: Let's look at our alternatives. I can choose a different approach. I control my own feelings. I can create an effective presentation. I choose. I prefer. I will.

Back to the windows - we choose how the world looks and how our lives will be. It's all about what we choose to focus on and ultimately do. And we choose what type of 'windows' we'll look at the world through. Our thoughts and language (empowering or not) determine our actions and the way things appear and end up.

This week - pay attention to the phrases you use and the thoughts you entertain.
Is it possible that you could use a new set of windows to see the world from?

If so - choose words and actions that will help you SEE with more clarity and positive purpose.