Friday, February 20, 2015

The Bedlamites' Visit

   This past week my sweet wife has been down to RootsTech in Salt Lake City. It is a big family history technology conference sponsored by FamilySearch.  Linda went with Madelynn (one of our grand daughters), Madelynn's good friend, Shannara, several of our ward's youth family History Consultants, and Lynell Nielson.  Also making the trek to RootsTech was my daughter Sarah, her three older daughters, and quite a few of other youth from her ward.  Needless to say it was quite the party and I was feeling a little left out. As much as I would have loved to go,  I have beekeeping classes in progress and the store is pretty busy this time of year.  I have some employees, but they are too new and inexperienced for me to leave the Beez Neez in their hands for a week.

   I didn't have much of an opportunity to feel lonely for the first couple of days that Linda was gone.  I was pretty busy between various church responsibilities and the fact that I had to prepare for our ward's first annual Chili Cook Off that was coming up Friday evening. I was responsible for some sort of cowboy music sing-along that was supposed to keep the crowd occupied at the beginning of the event while the chili and pies were judged.  In keeping with the cowboy theme, I roped a good friend into helping me with that. We met Thursday evening and spent an hour or so practicing cowboy songs on the fiddle and harmonica. I also had to squeeze in time to bake four batches of cornbread and a couple of pies for the event.

   Sometime Friday afternoon I received a heads up from my favorite daughter-in-law that they were coming to visit for the weekend.  I instantly went from feeling like a wallflower to feeling like my whole dance card had been filled in.   I went to the ward social as planned. The sing-along went just fine and the cornbread was a big hit. Out of four batches I brought just a few small pieces home. Sometimes during the summer I question whether its worth all of the trouble to grow my own corn for cornbread. I never question whether it was worthwhile when I take cornbread out of the oven. Best of all I came home to the enthusiastic welcome of the little Bedlamites. I cannot the express the joy I feel from the love of my grand children. It makes any sacrifice I have made in this life worthwhile.
Nora was a little unsure what to make of McDonald's play area
    Early Saturday morning I went with the Tunnells to the Seattle Temple. While Beth and James attended the Temple, I took the Bedlamites to breakfast at a nearby McDonalds. Fortunately for me, little sixteen month old Nora has decided that she likes me.  That made the whole adventure much more pleasant. I suspect the strong endorsement of her older siblings has contributed somewhat to her acceptance of me.  There is often a bit of "me too" mentality in the youngest child. We made it back to Snohomish at a reasonable time and I wasn't too terribly late getting to the Beez Neez. I was very grateful for employees who had opened the store right on time.
My antique corn sheller, all stocked and ready
    Several weeks ago I had found ear corn on sale at a local feed store. I bought a 20 pound bag to replenish the wooden bin on which I've mounted my antique corn sheller.  That turned out to have been very fortuitous. The kids spent several hours playing with the corn sheller and continued to run the empty cobs through the sheller long after all of the corn had been shelled. Nora seems to be particularly fascinated with corn.  She was very interested in the corn sheller itself, both in feeding ears of corn and turning the crank. She treated the bin full of shelled corn as if it were a sandbox. I spent the rest of the weekend stepping on corn kernels that she had scattered throughout the house. Fortunately, corn kernels are much easier on my bare feet than are legos, the items she is normally scattering.
After an hour or so of recreational corn shelling
    On Sunday evening I was able to participate in the Tunnell's Family Home Evening.  It was very fun to watch John conduct it.  After a relatively short lesson, designed to match the relatively short attention spans of a few of the participants, we had a little dance as an activity. I played the birdie dance on my fiddle while James accompanied on guitar.  Beth taught the dance to the little Bedlamites and they loved it.  Even little Nora had a great time trying to keep up with the other kids when they reached the part where they spread their wings and flew around the room.  There was some serious cuteness going on. I was unable to take pictures as I was supplying the music. I can't do hardly anything and fiddle at the same time.

     I finally broke down and used my new Kitchen Aid mixer. I used it to make pie crust of all things. It did a very slick job of it and truly made the task as easy as pie.  The purpose of the pie crust was to make chicken pot pie.  I made the pie crust while Beth made the filling. I thought our joint effort turned out very well but some of the little Bedlamites seemed unconvinced. I never cease to new amazed at the wonderful food that children will turn up their noses at. Yet, they will joyfully eat at McDonalds. Obviously their taste buds are not fully developed. One morning I introduced my son James to the egg mcmuffin maker I had gotten front the Romeros. We went through a good many english muffins to keep up with the demand. Fortunately the chickens are laying again so we currently have a good supply of eggs. The kids were okay with that as its food that looks like something you would buy at McDonalds. Besides, I have never seen kids go through English muffins like the Bedlamites can do.
My new toy, courtesy of my business credit card rewards program

Chicken Pot Pie, We were trying for a "fiddle" theme on the crust

A wonderful little gadget


  1. See! You should have kept the double! Looks like a fun weekend. We miss those Bedlamites.

    1. It is only when we have visitors that the double McMuffin maker would be useful. 90 percent of the time I'm making just one. Over the past month I bet I've eaten about 20 egg McMuffins. A very fun Christmas gift.

  2. It was such a wonderful weekend! I'm glad you don't mind a full dance card :)