Archive by Author

Psalm 62 He is my Safe Place

26 Sep

My Take

DiVoran Lites

I stand silently to listen for the one I love, waiting as long as it takes for the Lord to rescue me.

For God alone has become my Savior.

He also is my safe place; his wrap-around presence always protects me.

For he is my champion defender; there’s no risk of failure with God

So why would I let worry paralyze me, even when troubles multiply around me?

DiVoran has been writing for most of her life. Her first attempt at a story was when she was seven years old and her mother got a new typewriter. DiVoran got to use it and when her dad saw her writing he asked what she was writing about. DiVoran answered that she was writing the story of her life. Her dad’s only comment was, “Well, it’s going to be a very short story.” After most of a lifetime of writing and helping other writers, DiVoran finally launched her own dream which was to write a novel of her own. She now has her Florida Springs trilogy and her novel, a Christian Western Romance, Go West available on Amazon. When speaking about her road to publication, she gives thanks to the Lord for all the people who helped her grow and learn.  She says, “I could never have done it by myself, but when I got going everything fell beautifully into place, and I was glad I had started on my dream.”

No Shame or Confusion

19 Sep

My Take

DiVoran Lites

In you, O Lord, do I put my trust and confidently take refuge; let me never be put to shame or confusion.

Psalm 71:1 

Photo Credit: Pixabay

Trust God

12 Sep

My Take

DiVoran Lites

Before you do anything, put your trust totally in God and not in yourself. Then every plan you make will succeed.The Lord works everything together to accomplish his purpose.

Proverbs 16:3

Photo credit: Pixabay

The Flowers, the Sunset and the Trees

DiVoran has been writing for most of her life. Her first attempt at a story was when she was seven years old and her mother got a new typewriter. DiVoran got to use it and when her dad saw her writing he asked what she was writing about. DiVoran answered that she was writing the story of her life. Her dad’s only comment was, “Well, it’s going to be a very short story.” After most of a lifetime of writing and helping other writers, DiVoran finally launched her own dream which was to write a novel of her own. She now has her Florida Springs trilogy and her novel, a Christian Western Romance, Go West available on Amazon. When speaking about her road to publication, she gives thanks to the Lord for all the people who helped her grow and learn.  She says, “I could never have done it by myself, but when I got going everything fell beautifully into place, and I was glad I had started on my dream.”

I Will Listen to You

5 Sep

My Take

DiVoran Lites

You will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. You will seek Me and find Me when you seek Me with all your heart.

Jeremiah 29:12-13

Photo Credit:Pixabay

To enjoy a choral presentation of the beloved song, Jesus Loves Me on You Tube:

https://youtu.be/4s1so1dTu7o

DiVoran has been writing for most of her life. Her first attempt at a story was when she was seven years old and her mother got a new typewriter. DiVoran got to use it and when her dad saw her writing he asked what she was writing about. DiVoran answered that she was writing the story of her life. Her dad’s only comment was, “Well, it’s going to be a very short story.” After most of a lifetime of writing and helping other writers, DiVoran finally launched her own dream which was to write a novel of her own. She now has her Florida Springs trilogy and her novel, a Christian Western Romance, Go West available on Amazon. When speaking about her road to publication, she gives thanks to the Lord for all the people who helped her grow and learn.  She says, “I could never have done it by myself, but when I got going everything fell beautifully into place, and I was glad I had started on my dream.”

Min’s Cafe-Part 6

29 Aug

My Take

DiVoran Lites

School

When we were in fifth grade, we were consolidated. For all the years the valley had been populated, the children had tiny schools scattered over the valley. Some of them were far away from the ranch, and the children had to walk through snow drifts to get to school and home again. The names of the schools were the names of the ranchers that built them. There were twenty-six school districts in the relatively small valley. 

Image by Jo Justino from Pixabay

We were taken to Silvercliff on a bus instead of walking to school. I recall one time when the whole class, oh about six people, had to walk because the bus was unavailable. That was fun; we laughed and played the whole mile to the Silvercliffe school. 

I recall riding a bus out to a ranch with some of our ranch friends. Their lives were very different from ours, considering the amount of work they had to do. At one of the farms, I saw my first different child who could not attend school because he had Down’s syndrome. That made me very sad. I must have eaten something I wasn’t used to at another ranch because I got sick. Another place I recall was where I couldn’t get out of bed in the middle of the night. There was furniture around the children’s bed, and I couldn’t get out in the dark. I suppose I went back to sleep and managed to “hold it” until dawn.

Back in town, we had town dances at two different places. One was the upper room of the only grocery store (which in future years was blown off the building). The other was the basketball area at the high school. I loved those dances. We were taken to one of the old ranch schools for a square dance. 

During the town dances, Mrs. Erps played a honky tonk piano. The town quilters had made a beautiful quilt for someone who stopped in the right ring that was painted on the floor. I was thrilled down to my toes when my little brother and I, walking around, stopped in the right place. The quilt had a blue background with flowers and a yellow backing. All the names of the quilter were stitched into the quilt. I was thrilled, but my brother did not need it, so he gave me his half. It wore completely out decades later.

Our parents stayed at the restaurant during the dances, and the people came for refreshments. Mother and Daddy would casually ask, “How are those kids of ours doing?” They were assured the kids were doing fine and having a good time. Everybody looked after everyone else in those days and at that place.

Susie Luthi, whose father had the hotel, taught the children’s Sunday School at the church where Mother sent us. She was sixteen, and I was twelve. She got polio and was sick for a very long time. She asked me if I would take over the teaching because I was the only child interested in the Bible. We only had five children in the class. Over the time of my life, I have taught Sunday school for many years. The last time I saw Susie was at a school reunion not too many years ago, and she was still beautiful and sweet.  

My best friend Patience and I both won a trip to Denver. Mine was for writing a Colorado Young Citizens League speech contest that year, and her’s was for winning the spelling bee at her level. The speeches were about the history of education in Colorado. 

Patience and I had our first banana split at an ice cream parlor. We climbed up on the stools to sit at the marble fountain counter. We ordered the first banana split either of us had ever tasted.

Image by Hans Schwarzkopf from Pixabay

It was terrific, but we couldn’t eat it all. Just as we had vowed to be friends even when we were grandmothers (which we are), we vowed never to forget the ice cream, banana pieces, and syrup left in the bottom of the dish. I’ve only had about three banana splits and never could finish one. At one time, Bill’s sister and her husband shared one with us at a Dairy Queen. The four of us didn’t have any trouble polishing that one off. 

DiVoran has been writing for most of her life. Her first attempt at a story was when she was seven years old and her mother got a new typewriter. DiVoran got to use it and when her dad saw her writing he asked what she was writing about. DiVoran answered that she was writing the story of her life. Her dad’s only comment was, “Well, it’s going to be a very short story.” After most of a lifetime of writing and helping other writers, DiVoran finally launched her own dream which was to write a novel of her own. She now has her Florida Springs trilogy and her novel, a Christian Western Romance, Go West available on Amazon. When speaking about her road to publication, she gives thanks to the Lord for all the people who helped her grow and learn.  She says, “I could never have done it by myself, but when I got going everything fell beautifully into place, and I was glad I had started on my dream.”

Min’s Cafe-Part 5

22 Aug

My Take

DiVoran Lites

Animals

Free photos of Horse

I was six years old when Dad came home from WWII, and we bought Min’s Café in Westcliffe. Dad wanted my brother and me to have a horse, so he bought us a part Shetland pony, a small horse breed. We called him Yankee. At first, Dad would help me into the saddle, but the minute he let go of the reigns, Yankee took off for the corral where he and the other town horses lived. The small horse was the master until Dad showed us how to rule over him when we rode. 

We soon outgrew Yankee and Dad got bigger horses. We were free to gallop on dirt roads when no cars or tractors were there. But not on the prairie, where there were many Prairie-Dog holes for the horses to step into and break their legs. We went out to the rodeo grounds and played with the horses, with my brother changing from one to the other. 

Photo Credit:Pixabay

Another time we played with the horses by having them step over the treated logs that would soon be supporting street lights at the end of Mainstreet. My horse stumbled, and I flew off his back. It knocked the breath out of me, but I got up and mounted again, which Daddy had always told us to do. Otherwise, if we walked away, we would grow afraid and never get on a horse again. 

Photo Credit:Pixabay

We had Brownie the dog, a tiger cat, two family horses, and later two donkeys for packing on a fishing trip. Yes, many donkeys are indeed as stubborn as three-year-olds. My brother and I never got them to do anything we wanted. Each of us was given a calf, but mine died. It was the first real heartache I had ever experienced. Why did she have to die so young?

The train station was built during the silver rush in Silvercliff, now a tiny town. It was a toss-up whether Denver or Silvercliff would become the capital of Colorado. The train station’s history now includes the story of why the tracks that ran on the side of a mountain were taken out. In wintertime, heavy snow piling up pushed the tracks off the mountainside, and the line had to be constantly repaired. 

Needing a bigger place to live and a place to accommodate paying guests, Dad bought the old train depot, and he and Mother renovated it.

Of course, the building had a wooden walk, and Dad had to take it out. It was spring, and baby rabbits ran everywhere. Dad gave me a soft baby rabbit and sent me upstairs to pet it. There were too many rabbits in the valley to keep as they harmed the terrain. Naturally, we had to “get rid” of them. It was like living in the Old West. The mountains always soothed me, though. I knew God had made them, and they were our fortress.

Photo Credit:Pixabay

In this place, I first became aware of the sound of coyotes in the night. I wasn’t afraid because I knew they were God’s coyotes, and he wouldn’t let them hurt me. 

Photo Credit:Pixabay

 We lived in Westcliffe until it was time to move on. I was twelve years old. Then we moved to Los Alamos, the heart of the Atomic Bomb, where Dad became a gate guard, and later, after we moved to Albuquerque, a courier for carrying bombs in a big semi. 

To be continued, but still in Westcliffe

DiVoran has been writing for most of her life. Her first attempt at a story was when she was seven years old and her mother got a new typewriter. DiVoran got to use it and when her dad saw her writing he asked what she was writing about. DiVoran answered that she was writing the story of her life. Her dad’s only comment was, “Well, it’s going to be a very short story.” After most of a lifetime of writing and helping other writers, DiVoran finally launched her own dream which was to write a novel of her own. She now has her Florida Springs trilogy and her novel, a Christian Western Romance, Go West available on Amazon. When speaking about her road to publication, she gives thanks to the Lord for all the people who helped her grow and learn.  She says, “I could never have done it by myself, but when I got going everything fell beautifully into place, and I was glad I had started on my dream.”

Min’s Cafe-Part 4

15 Aug

My Take

DiVoran Lites

Photo Credit:Pixabay

At one time, Colorado had many Tuberculosis patients. The Department of Health required the sick people to go to the pure mountain air for its high, dry effect on healing lungs. When David and I washed the dishes (by hand), we were required to put a pink powder into the rinse water to sterilize the dinnerware.  

The cool sweet water that came down from the mountains and into our faucets was the purest in the world. We also had it hot and cold. We pulled each dish out of the hot, pink rinse the government insisted on for restaurants and put them into the drainer to air dry. We pretended we were building a fairy castle as we piled the dishes in a drainer. When the stack got so high that the dishes fell to the floor, there was nothing else to do but pick them up and set them on the stainless steel counter because we couldn’t reach the cupboards. 

We had a restaurant-sized grill for hamburgers, sausage, pancakes, bacon, and eggs. I was pleased and proud when Dad let me cook a hamburger for him to serve to a customer. Min had a reputation, too, for the best pancakes in town. Each day she put a fresh bowl of batter in the big refrigerator, so we would be ready to serve pancakes night and day.

Photo Credit:Pixabay

Beef dishes were plentiful, but I was already looking for a way to avoid eating meat. Dad hunted, fished, and then hung the carcasses  in the big shed to season. The last straw for me on eating meat was when I saw the movie “Bambi,” and Bambi’s mother died. 

The roast beef was the special every day, and our parents wanted us to eat what they thought was a wonderful meal. A row of hand-made wooden booths ran along the east wall where we were. We ate our meals in the center booth. We were always happy when someone put a dime in the jute box, and we could have a dinnertime concert.  

A painting of Custer’s Last Stand with horses going down dead and people being scalped hung above the middle booth. For some reason, we chose to make it our booth. Maybe it was because of the painting; paintings were in our lives, but who needed paintings when they had such a wonderful view of God’s mountains.  After I ate my mashed potatoes and gravy, I wrapped my roast beef in a paper napkin and dropped it into the hole the builder had left at the top of the booth. 

Photo Credit:Pixabay

We had a small pantry off the kitchen where many things happened. That’s where Brownie had to stay because it was against the law for dogs to be in restaurants. Sometimes Mother tried to get the knots out of my hair there.

I recall spending a whole fourth-grade class sitting at my desk tugging at my hair with a comb while the other children listened to the teacher. She was a woman with no children of her own and one of the sweetest, kindest teachers I ever had. As an aside, an old building had been designated our new school in Silvercliff. Each class now had its room. It was the beginning of gathering all the children in the valley attending the one-room schoolhouses. They called it consolidation. Our sweet teacher let me finish unsnarling my hair, and I was finished by recess. 

Mother had always tried to rake out the tangles when she had time before I left for school. One day, however, she decided to cut it short. She got half of it cut with me wiggling and trying to get away, and finally, I broke away and ran the two blocks home with Brownie running along. When I got there, I looked in the mirror and knew I had to go back and let her cut the other half.

The library was directly across the street from the restaurant at the back of the town hall. I loved to read Judy Bolton mysteries and fairy tales. The librarian had assured me it was all right for a young lady to like fairy tales still. She liked them too. Once I got my book, I went back across the street to Min’s, sat in the bar’s back booth, and ate potato chips to my heart’s content.  

 To Be Continued

DiVoran has been writing for most of her life. Her first attempt at a story was when she was seven years old and her mother got a new typewriter. DiVoran got to use it and when her dad saw her writing he asked what she was writing about. DiVoran answered that she was writing the story of her life. Her dad’s only comment was, “Well, it’s going to be a very short story.” After most of a lifetime of writing and helping other writers, DiVoran finally launched her own dream which was to write a novel of her own. She now has her Florida Springs trilogy and her novel, a Christian Western Romance, Go West available on Amazon. When speaking about her road to publication, she gives thanks to the Lord for all the people who helped her grow and learn.  She says, “I could never have done it by myself, but when I got going everything fell beautifully into place, and I was glad I had started on my dream.”

Min’s Cafe 🍽 Part 3

8 Aug

My Take

DiVoran Lites

Going to The Jones 

The turquoise marque on your right is our local theater  

In Westcliffe, we had a small movie theater called “The Jones,” where we saw all the newest movies after they had traveled America before they got to other small towns like Westcliffe.

From Min’s Café, we could look sidewise out the big plate glass window to see when the new and so beautiful Neon lights went on. The show was open on Friday and Saturday, and that was it. No Sunday night shows because everybody had to get up early in the town and at the ranches on Monday. We could only go to the movies in the summertime. If we had tried to go in the winter, we would have frozen because the theater had no heat.

There was a low counter where we got our tickets and a bag of popcorn. 

For the tickets, we paid twenty-five cents, and the popcorn was ten cents. It came from a popcorn maker that wafted a wonderful fragrance into the room. We went through heavy red curtains to get inside the show.   

Everything was in black and white, as are the pictures above. Looking at the faces, I see Laurel and Hardy in the middle at the far right. This movie was made in 1937, one year before I was born, but the Laurel and Hardy movies were so funny that they amused their audience for many years.

Once, when my friend Patience went with me to a scary show, she was so frightened that she started fiddling with the buttons on my coat (yes, we still had to wear our coats because even in the summer, the theater was chilly). By the time the movie was over, all the buttons were on the floor. I picked them up and tucked them into the pockets, and Mother sewed them on the next morning. 

I don’t think my brother David liked going to the movies, so when he grew older, he must have stayed at the restaurant or the house with Brownie until the movie ended.

To be Continued 

DiVoran has been writing for most of her life. Her first attempt at a story was when she was seven years old and her mother got a new typewriter. DiVoran got to use it and when her dad saw her writing he asked what she was writing about. DiVoran answered that she was writing the story of her life. Her dad’s only comment was, “Well, it’s going to be a very short story.” After most of a lifetime of writing and helping other writers, DiVoran finally launched her own dream which was to write a novel of her own. She now has her Florida Springs trilogy and her novel, a Christian Western Romance, Go West available on Amazon. When speaking about her road to publication, she gives thanks to the Lord for all the people who helped her grow and learn.  She says, “I could never have done it by myself, but when I got going everything fell beautifully into place, and I was glad I had started on my dream.”

Min’s Cafe 🍽 Part 2

1 Aug

My Take

DiVoran Lites

I loved to dance, so Grandmother paid for dance lessons while we still lived with her and Granddad in Canon City. However, when we got to Westcliffe, I had to find places to dance. When the tourists came, Dad put a huge dining table in the middle of the room for the tourists, so there was no room for a dancer there. But we still had the garage between the gas station and the restaurant, which smelled like tire rubber, with plenty of room for playing shadow hands and dancing. 

One of the best things that happened was that we rode out to a ranch and selected a fuzzy brown puppy to keep. Dad told us to take all our money and pay for the dog when we got him. We gathered all the money we had made from washing dishes, cleaning tables, taking out the trash, and swatting flies in the summer. Between us, we had thirty cents. We never knew if Dad gave the owner more. We named the wiggly creature Brownie. As far as I recall, he was the only dog in town, and all the town loved him. We could go anywhere with him at any time, and every night he escorted us to the house and stayed as a guard as we slept. 

The old railroad duplex where we lived when Jeanine and I were in third grade. My brother David, neighbor Jeanine, her baby brother Kenny, Helen, and me in the majorette boots. 

We weren’t supposed to walk to the creek just out of town. The water ran too fast for children, but I started slipping in wearing my clothes when I was about ten. I could let them dry before I went to the restaurant. Unfortunately, I didn’t know when the shorts and tee shirt were thoroughly dry. When I stepped into the back room of Min’s, Mother knew where I’d been. I think she just turned me over to the Lord, and I kept on with my wild ways. I only remember one spanking from Dad and none from Mother, but I may have forgotten a few. We had the run of the town with Brownie as guardian. 

Photo credit:Pixabay

The duplex had one bedroom barely big enough for a bed and a dresser. That was mom and dad’s room. There was a living room, a bathroom, and a kitchen. Dad installed a bunk bed in the kitchen for us kids. We put our clothes and toys in the kitchen drawers and cupboards. David slept on the top bunk, and I slept on the bottom. If the wind got bad or the coyotes out prairie got loud, I climbed up to join him on the top bunk. When I climbed the ladder and settled next to him, the top bunk fell onto the lower bunk. We slept on the double bunk, which was crooked, and Daddy put them back together the next day. 

Photo credit:Pixabay

Min’s Café was prosperous enough for Dad to buy a Piper Cub, and several times he flew us over the mountain peaks to Canon City to visit Grandmother and Granddad. The cockpit was so small that David and I had to squeeze behind the seats and sit on a wooden platform. There wasn’t even room for luggage. One time out of boredom, I made airplane sounds, but Mother told me to stop because it might make Daddy think there was something wrong with the engine. 

When we returned to the house one winter after a flying spree, I found that the goldfish I had won at a town get-together had frozen solid. I begged Daddy to thaw it out, but he wouldn’t even try, so I was in mourning for a day or two.

Another time my little brother and I went to a town dance; he was kind enough to walk with me in a marked circle as the pianist played. The quilters of the town had patched together a beautiful quilt. David and I were in the winner’s spot when the music stopped. It was a beautiful quilt with a lot of blue in it. David didn’t have any interest, so he gave it to me. I loved that quilt until I wore it out. 

As children, we went to the town dances on our own while Mother and Dad worked at Min’s. As the other people of the town went for refreshments, our parents would ask how we were behaving, and we always got straight A’s. 

To be continued

DiVoran has been writing for most of her life. Her first attempt at a story was when she was seven years old and her mother got a new typewriter. DiVoran got to use it and when her dad saw her writing he asked what she was writing about. DiVoran answered that she was writing the story of her life. Her dad’s only comment was, “Well, it’s going to be a very short story.” After most of a lifetime of writing and helping other writers, DiVoran finally launched her own dream which was to write a novel of her own. She now has her Florida Springs trilogy and her novel, a Christian Western Romance, Go West available on Amazon. When speaking about her road to publication, she gives thanks to the Lord for all the people who helped her grow and learn.  She says, “I could never have done it by myself, but when I got going everything fell beautifully into place, and I was glad I had started on my dream.”

Empty Nest

18 Jul

My Take

DiVoran Lites

I heard a bird call with the most resonant

Song I ever heard and saw it on the tree.

The bird didn’t see me. Then another one

Winged in with a piece of plastic in her beak.

 I knew she was soon to be a mother

 But I didn’t move or speak.

She zoomed into a Carolina wren nest

She had built in an aloe plant.

We discovered one egg one day, and

 The next another—every day, one more

Until there were four, and she couldn’t 

Lay any more. The nest was full.

We checked the birds every day.

Suddenly, one morning a head no bigger

Than the tip of my pointer finger wobbled.

Soon the nest was full of beaks and

Beady eyes, feathers, and wings. It seemed to expand

Like a womb with a growing child. Parent’s cries rang,

“In-coming, in-coming,” as they delivered bugs

And the nest began to peep. I went to look,

Soon even the expanding nest was too small.

I saw a tiny perfect wing. I heard the father calling

“Flying is the thing.” I thought soon we would

See nestlings fledging. But oh, it was not to be. 

The next morning, everyone was gone, 

No beady eyes peeking out at us.

No cleaning the nest of tiny balls

No more serenades

All gone.

Empty Nest. 

Pictures by Pixabay

DiVoran has been writing for most of her life. Her first attempt at a story was when she was seven years old and her mother got a new typewriter. DiVoran got to use it and when her dad saw her writing he asked what she was writing about. DiVoran answered that she was writing the story of her life. Her dad’s only comment was, “Well, it’s going to be a very short story.” After most of a lifetime of writing and helping other writers, DiVoran finally launched her own dream which was to write a novel of her own. She now has her Florida Springs trilogy and her novel, a Christian Western Romance, Go West available on Amazon. When speaking about her road to publication, she gives thanks to the Lord for all the people who helped her grow and learn.  She says, “I could never have done it by myself, but when I got going everything fell beautifully into place, and I was glad I had started on my dream.”

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