We’ve had a whole lot of busy going on around here lately.
- Sprinkler re-do: We have secondary water up here in Fruit Heights that is pressurized very well. The sprinklers are tied to that system but they’ve been a problem basically since we’ve moved in. I wanted to re-build the whole control system but have lacked motivation. Well, while I was in Washington, D.C., last month, they pressurized the system and one of the plastic shut-off valves broke in half and flooded Leah’s room in the basement. Flood + wife dealing with the aftermath = motivation. Simple algebra, really. I cut the whole thing out, moved it about 8 feet away, rebuilt the valve manifold and main shut-off, and added a spigot and filter. Success. I actually felt a great sense of accomplishment when this was complete. With 90 degree days coming this week, I am happy to have something for my lawn to drink. Thanks to Bryon Leavitt for his help!
- Wedding: My sister Kaitlin — #10 of 11 children — was married last week to Chad Lanham. As a side note, his mom’s name is Karen, so during the festivities we were talking to Karen Lanham, which is pronounced the same as Karen Lannom, one of my former co-workers. It was weird. Anyway, Kaitlin got married at the Provo, UT temple and it was fun to be able to participate. Congrats, Katy!
- Church calling: I was released as a youth Sunday School teacher (age 16-17) and called as the adult Gospel Doctrine teacher. This is the first time I’ve had this calling and, in fact, I’ve only ever taught this class once in my entire life — about a month ago as a substitute. This will be fun yet challenging for me since I’m no expert in church doctrine.
- Photo shoots: We took our kids to BYU’s campus to do an impromptu photo shoot. My kids aren’t that cooperative so we didn’t get a bunch of great ones to hang on the wall, but we did capture some fun ones. Later that day, I did an informal photo shoot for my brother Adam and his wife and kids. They were much better about looking at the camera and paying attention.
- Calf branding: There is a guy who lives down the street from us who owns a small (<200 acres) ranch south of Evanston, WY. The ranch isn’t his main job, but more of a hobby. When I found out this winter that he had a ranch, I approached him and said, “Hoyt, my goal is to get to know you well enough that you’ll invite me to come up to your ranch and work for a day.” He said, “Well, why don’t you help with branding this spring?” I haven’t branded since I was a missionary in Nebraska (in 1997) so I jumped at the chance. That came on Saturday. I made the 1.5 hour drive to their ranch and was there by 8am and immediately put to work. We herded the cattle from the pasture to the corrals, immunized and branded the calves, and basically got really tired. After all that was done, I helped fix fence for a bit. It was good work and I look forward to helping next year. Sorry, no pictures.
Phew. School is winding down and the kids are excited about summer. We’ve been in our home in Fruit Heights just over 9 months now and have really enjoyed our time up here. We’ve also recently had a few friends come up to the house, the Smiths, Garners, and Bryon Leavitt. We love keeping in touch with the great friends we made during our 7 years in West Jordan.