Archive by Author

New Neighbors

24 Jun

My Take

DiVoran Lites

Story by Dora Bowers

Not long after the Pueblo flood of 1921, Dad rented a small house in Canon City. Some of the neighbors were close to my age. I remember Jessica Redmond who came to America from England with her parents. Jessica had bright red hair. Her mother gave me Jessica’s pink silk dress because of that hair. The dress had tucks and embroidery and was the most beautiful dress I had ever seen. That is how I learned that no self-respecting red-head would ever wear a pink dress because at that time people believed that pink and red would clash. My light brown hair, though, was just right for it. 

Pink Silk Dress       DiVoran’s Vintage Pictures

The other neighbor’s child was a curly-headed boy with sparkling blue eyes who teased me and made me laugh. His name was Ivan Bowers. Ivan and his parents and brother had ended up in Canon City after a long trip from Illinois and a sojourn in Paonia, Colorado where his grandmother had died and been buried before they left.  

It wasn’t long until the Bowers and the Bedell families left the block of houses where they lived in order to start their own businesses. Marie and Ira Bowers bought a barber/beauty shop on Main Street that included living quarters. Ivan and his younger brother, Lowell helped out with the chores of keeping up the beauty shop, but Ivan would run next door to the machine garage any chance he got and from there he developed many of the skills he would use such as welding and car repair throughout his life. 

Welded Ship by Ivan Bowers  Photo, DiVoran’s Vintage Pictures

Marie, Ivan, Lowell, and Ira at the side of the machine shop DiVoran’s Vintage Pictures

DiVoran’s Vintage Pictures

Around the same time, my mother and dad, Mabel and Roger Bedell bought an apple orchard on the outskirts of town.  During the Great Depression neither family lacked food or a place to live. People would always need haircuts and as for my parents who took in relatives such as my mother’s sister and company, we always had eggs from the chickens, milk from the cows, and vegetables from the garden.

As I grew I was given more jobs on the farm. At first, I gathered eggs, but then I started bringing the cows in for milking. That reminds me of something that happened at school one day when I was twelve years old: I got up from my desk and walked to the pencil sharpener at the back of the room. As I passed one of the boys whistled softly then whispered, “Would you look at the swing in that gate!” I knew he meant the way my hips swayed when I walked, and I was mortified!. That evening as I followed the cows from the meadow to the barn I put my hands in the back pockets of my overhauls and started re-training my walk so that nobody would make fun of me ever again.

Dora in her overhauls at twelve and the baby sister she prayed for plus a young neighbor.  DiVoran’s Vintage Pictures

Author, Poet and Artist

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.”

Floods Sweep over Eastern Colorado 1921

17 Jun

My Take

DiVoran Lites

The New York Times June 3, 1921

Pueblo, Colorado Inundated, Hundreds Reported Dead 

Story by Dora Bedell Bowers

My cousin, Lloyd had his birthday on June 3, 1921. We were then both six years old. I have a picture of the two of us from around that time. We were the same height and we wore identical blue rompers. Our hair was cut in Dutch Bobs with every strand in place. My mother, my brother, and I had come to Pueblo to stay with Grandmother and Daddy Hunter while my father was working as the manager of the gas plant in Canon City. We would join him when he found a place for the family to live. 

We were in Lloyd’s mother’s upstairs apartment gazing at the birthday cake sitting on the table in front of an open window. We could hardly wait to get our forks into that cake. Suddenly we heard a hullabaloo of sirens, church bells, factory whistles, and shouting from the street below. Daddy Hunter ran down to see what was going on and discovered that a telephone call had from upriver at Canon City with a warning that Pueblo was about to be flooded by the Arkansas River and a tributary that had joined it.  Daddy Hunter hustled us downstairs and into the wagon where his horse Big Bill waited patiently. I’d never seen Daddy Hunter hit anything before, but he used the whip to get Big Bill galloping up the street to higher ground. That night we and hundreds of other people slept or tried to sleep on the floors of the schoolhouse that sat on a hill. We learned later, that although there were many miracles and generous-hearted people who saved others, the death toll eventually rose to 1,500.

The next day we heard that men from Canon City were coming to help clean up after the flood. My daddy was one of them. Six years before, around the time I was born, Mother and Dad had lived in a small house across the railroad tracks from the Pueblo gas plant and Daddy had worked there. There was talk of him being a good man in a pinch and I was so proud of him. He brought four men from Canon City in a Model T Ford to help clean up and reorganize the Pueblo gas plant. When they got there they discovered that the holder where the manufactured gas was stored had sunk into the muck and had to be lifted and resettled. 

Better times, Roger, Dora’s Daddy, Vera her aunt, Dora, Mabel, her mother and Dora Bell, her grandmother.  DiVoran’s Vintage Pictures

That first day at the school I looked up and saw my daddy walking toward us through the crowd. I ran to meet him. There he stood, tall and straight. He was about 5 foot eleven and always weighed one hundred forty- four pounds. He was dressed as he always dressed in well-shined black Bulldog boots that had a rounded toe and laced to the ankle. He wore striped work pants, a blue shirt, and a one-inch long black string tie. He parted his thick chestnut hair on the side. He had blue eyes and big ears. When he saw me, he got a silly grin on his face and picked me up and swung me around. After he set me down, I put my small hand into his big one and kept it there while he talked to the other adults. My only thought was, daddy’s here, and I’m safe. 

The next morning we ventured out to see what we could see. The river was still in full spate roiling up under the nearby bridge until I was afraid people standing on it would be swept off and drowned. I learned later that it had happened just as I had feared. The muddy yellow water contained all kinds of debris, including dead horses and cows. We saw bedraggled bouquets that had been set out in the cemetery for Decoration Day. The water had swept them off the graves and into the raging flood. We half expected to see dead bodies come rolling down the river. It was scary but I knew my daddy could look after all of us.

When we were sure the danger was past, we went to Grandmother and Daddy Hunter’s rooms to bathe and put on clean clothes. We were surprised that even though the two-story building sat by itself on the low ground everything was just as it had been when we left to go to the party. There was the old rocking chair with its homemade cushion, and the coal-oil lamps ready to light as soon as it began to get dark. After our baths, Lloyd and I walked the block to Dammeron’s where we bought red and black licorice sticks, one for a penny.

When the family got together for our belated supper at Lloyd’s house, Auntie told us what she found when she got home. The first thing was the high-water mark at the second story level.. When she actually got into her apartment she was amazed to see that the cake had floated off the table and out the window. My mother said that we could have been swept out just as easy if we hadn’t got away. We were so grateful for the warning and for our escape. The watermark remained on that building for decades and it could still be there as far as I know.

More about the Great Flood of 1921

When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you. Isaiah 43:2 New Living Translation

Author, Poet and Artist

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.”

Heading West

10 Jun

My Take

DiVoran Lites

Story by Ivan Bowers, DiVoran’s Dad

Source unknown

I was born in Hidalgo, Illinois on June 9, 1915. My grandfather, Noah Dulgar, had been hearing about how easy it was to grow cherries, apricots, grapes, peaches, plums, pears, and apples in Paonia, Colorado. Being a long time farmer he decided to move there and start a new life.  

The Dulgar Family                               DiVoran’s Vintage Pictures

I had just turned five when Pa Dulgar loaded thirteen of us into a one-ton, model T, flatbed, truck, and we started the 1,500 mile trip from Hidalgo, Illinois to Paonia, Colorado. Pa Dulgar a carpenter built side rails in the back of the truck to hold all the family and goods we had to take with us. The front windshield could be swiveled up to let in air and closed down for rain. Pa’s truck-bed had a canvas over the top that could be rolled back in the daytime. Most of us rode perched on boxes, cans, bedding, and whatever else we needed for the trip. We followed the Ocean to Ocean Pikes Peak trail (OOPP) by watching for markers on telegraph poles.

We must have looked like the family in the movie, “The Grapes of Wrath.” In those days, unless you were rich enough for trains, hotels, or restaurants, travel was rough. Some people rented out rooms in their homes, but there were too many of us for that. We slept in the truck bed, a few small ones in the cab, and some under the vehicle. 

Ivan as a child                       DiVoran’s Vintage Pictures

All along the way, we had to keep fixing the truck. Pa let me watch and help the best I could. Whenever it rained the mud dried into ruts with sharp edges that cut the tires. Pa and my dad, Ira, jacked up the truck and removed the wheel, then patched it and we were on our way. A lot of times we all, except for the two-year-olds, got out and pushed the truck through sand or up the hills. Later, when Ira told the story he’d say, “Yep, by golly, we pushed ‘er all the way from Illinois to Colorado. We had to keep fillin’ up that leaky ole radiator but sometimes we weren’t close enough to a river or a creek to get water so we always took a big jugful along.

For food, we shot rabbits and squirrels and we fished when we could. The women of the family had brought some of their canning and we’d buy milk, eggs, and sometimes vegetables from farmers along the way. One thing is sure we didn’t have any money to waste, so we ate a lot of oatmeal cooked over a campfire. 

Amy, Pa’s wife, and my grandmother sometimes sat on the bench seat in front with Pa with the two-year-olds on their laps. Other times, Ira took the driving and Marie sat in the front seat with him. Pa’s wife, Amy wasn’t strong, so we all tried to protect her the best we could.

The men wore overalls and the women wore homemade wash-dresses. Most of our clothes got pretty raggedy, but Amy and Marie and the older girls tried to keep them sewed up as much as they could. 

Of Pa and Amy’s kids, my mother Marie was the oldest, then there was Ruth, Glen, Mable, Pauline, Earl, Helen, andPaul. Helen was the same age as me and that was so funny. How could an aunt be the same age as her nephew? Helen had pretty red hair like my mother’s, and she liked me, so we stayed friends all our lives. The two-year-olds were my little brother Lowell, and my uncle Paul who was an even younger uncle than Helen was an aunt. 

Plough Horses  Pixabay

Sad to say, Pa’s plans didn’t turn out like he hoped they would. His wife Amy died, his workhorses drowned when they fell off a bridge and his children scattered. Finally, he made up his mind to go back to Illinois where he had friends and more family to help with the children. Marie, Ira, Ivan, and Lowell moved to Canon City where Marie and Ira lived for the rest of their lives. Some of the family ended up in other states, but they visited when they could. I met Dora in Canon City when we were both just kids.

Author, Poet and Artist

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.”

Baby Book Four

27 May

My Take

DiVoran Lites

Story by Dora Bedell Bowers

DiVoran talks very well now and she is still just as friendly with people as ever. She sucks her thumb (yet & still). She weighs 26 ½ pounds. She has a black kitten which we call, “Little Devil.” We have a grass yard here so she is able to get outside in good weather. Everyone compliments her on her lovely curls, which are now blond. Grandmother Bowers sometimes forms them into a head full of long curls. Our child is sweet and everyone loves her. May that always be true.

January 1, 1944

Dear little book,

It has been a long time since I have written.  We are living in Crowley, Colorado now. Ivan works on the machinery in a tomato factory, and my paid job is to cook the noon meal for six workers every day.  Sister is five years old now. I call her that because she has a two-year-old baby brother. His name is David.  He is just learning to talk and can’t say her real name so he calls her Doo-Doo. We still have our cat. He is big and very mean at times, but he’s beautiful and shiny, and we love him in spite of his disposition. 

David and DiVoran about 1943   DiVoran’s Vintage Photos

We have a goat for milk, and she has a kid. DiVoran loves warm goat’s milk. The doctor recommended it. It’s very good for her. We have chickens and a rooster. When we go over to the factory to visit Daddy, we walk in a line. I carry David piggyback, then comes DiVoran, Boots the Irish Setter, Mama-goat, baby goat, and Chanticleer the rooster. I’m always surprised when the baby goat prances over the window glass that protects the young tomato plants. He never breaks a one.  

Sister can help out a great deal now. She sets the table and takes the scraps to the chickens. She looks after Dave very well for her age. I take them to Sunday School. DiVoran still has curly hair but so hates to have it combed. She says she is going to let it grow until she can walk on it. She has decided to marry the neighbor’s boy Lloyd Osbourne. 

Sister doesn’t care for dolls. She loves books, though, and she likes to color. She reads to Dave when she can get him to sit still long enough to listen. Sister has a persistent cold which I hope we can overcome. Her eyes are hazel now; her hair is darker too. Her feet were somewhat curved when she was born. I tried to massage them and help them to be straight, but I didn’t succeed. Sister likes the radio, and she loves to dance. I suppose she picked that up from me. Daddy Ivan will be examined soon for the army unless his boss, Mr. Picketto gets a deferment for him. Don’t misunderstand, he’s ready and willing to fight for his country, but the boss needs him at the tomato factory to keep the machinery running. I’ll close now with a prayer that I may be a good mother through the coming years. 

The End 

Author, Poet and Artist

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.”

Baby Book 3

20 May

My Take

DiVoran Lites

Story by Dora Bedell Bowers

October 21, 1939  

 

 

  It has been a while since I wrote in this little book, but I shall try to remember the most important things that happened. When DiVoran was nine and ten months old we lived in one of Ira and Marie’s upstairs apartments. One day when Ivan and I were standing at the top of the stairs getting ready to go down, Punky (which is what we call her now) walked off the top step and tumbled down seven stairs. Ivan sprung down four steps in order to pick her up. I was so scared I nearly fainted. She developed a black and blue spot on her jaw, but she’s all right now.

 

Punky was eleven months old when she started walking. The day she did, Ivan and I had gone deer hunting and left her at the apartment house with Grandmother Bowers. We didn’t get home until late but when we did Marie told us that DiVoran started walking at four-thirty in the afternoon, and didn’t stop walking and falling until six o’clock in the evening.  

 

 

Two weeks before she was a year old, I took her to Sunday school. Her teacher, Elvira, who was my Campfire Girls leader and Sunday school teacher when I was young, said DiVoran mostly watched the other children and mirrored Elvira when she patted the pictures in the book. Our toddler was happy to see me when I went in to get her. Elvira said she seemed to have a wonderful time. Punky’s first birthday was the next Sunday so I was going to take her to Sunday School but by the time I got her dressed and undressed and dressed again, she was asleep with her new leggin’s half on, half off, so I decided we’d just stay home.

 

Babies are sweet, but one-year-olds are cuter. Punky says, “Mama, “Da, Da”, “Ah boo,” “hi”, and “yep.” She can patty cake, be a big girl (by putting her hands in the air). She crosses her arms over her chest to love the baby, she throws us kisses and says a how-do by nodding her head. She knows that means yes, too, but it’s different. She shakes her head no when you offer her something she doesn’t want.

 

The other day DiVoran and I were out in the yard. She saw a rock and started to laugh as she went toward it.  She tried to pry it up but it was as big as my head and wouldn’t budge. I picked her up to distract her and we went to pet our Irish Setter, Boots. 

 

This morning Punky was sitting in her high chair as usual when she suddenly spotted her rag doll. She reached over and took her child in her arms and kissed it smack on the mouth.

 

She isn’t house broke yet. It doesn’t seem like she ever will be. When she is through with her bottle she throws it out of her crib and sucks her thumb. She is bow-legged and pigeon-toed, but she is still the most wonderful baby in the world.

 

At a year old DiVoran has eight teeth.

 

We planned a birthday party, but her great grandmother Hunter was so sick we couldn’t have it until Monday. DiVoran had two cakes, one on Sunday, another on Monday. It was the first time she blew the candles out by herself.

 


Marie and Ira Bowers

Punky’s Granddad Bowers gave her a little silver bracelet with a big red jewel the size of a quarter. Her mama and daddy gave her a heart-shaped locket with a pearl on it.  

To be continued

 

Author, Poet and Artist

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.”

Baby Book 2

13 May

My Take

DiVoran Lites

  Story by  my mother, Dora Bedell Bowers  

Card-Star of the West Press

On Christmas Day, when DiVoran was nearly two months old Ivan’s Uncle Glen and Aunt Lucille invited us to Sparks for Christmas. We put aside the long gown that most babies wore for the first couple of months and she wore a pretty pink dress a and a bunting I had crocheted which went perfectly with the leggings her Great-grandmother Hunter had made for her. When we got to Sparks, Glen and Lucille were glad to see us, especially the baby who squirmed and kicked her feet to show she was happy to see them too.

 

For Christmas DiVoran received a wooly dog made by a convict from the Colorado State Penitentiary in Canon City where Granddad Bowers worked as a guard. She also got a baby rattle from Boonie Egbert and another rattle from the Safeway folks, where Ivan worked as a meat-cutter. There was another baby book from Ivan’s aunt and uncle. She got a soft, fuzzy duck and swan from my brother, Snooks (Smithy) Bedell and his wife, Lena. She received a crib-sheet and pillowcase from Mrs. Hill and Kitty Hill. We got her a doll, which she likes to have in the crib with her.

 

She learns something new every day. During her first eight weeks, she learned to turn her head to see who was talking to her. When she smiled, that person would just beam. And on the second day of January when DiVoran was three months old, she held up a tiny hand and stared at her fist for a long time as if it were the most interesting thing in the world.

 

DiVoran likes to suck her thumb, she not only likes it but feels it is an absolute necessity. Last night, we wrapped her thumb in gauze so she couldn’t suck it. She cried, so we unwrapped it. She went back to sleep so we wrapped it again waking her in the process. She cried again so we unwrapped it. So that’s how it went until we gave up and went to bed. All in all, though, she is a good child and not only because she belongs to us.

 

Photo by Pixabay

 

  Our baby girl likes intense colors, particularly the afghan throw over the back of the Chesterfield couch. She lights up at the sight of a bright dress. She enjoys listening to music on the radio, especially the lively tunes. There are a few things she is particular about such as thumb sucking, sleeping in her basket, and not having too many covers on. She wants plenty of food and it had better be on time. Sometimes she just lays in her crib and kicks her feet. The doctor said we were not to pick her up too much because it would spoil her, but sometimes it is hard to resist. She coos and smiles a good deal, particularly when we say hello or call her sweetheart. She turns her head with a definite movement now.

To Be Continued

 

 

Author, Poet and Artist

 

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.”

DiVoran’s Baby Book

6 May

My Take

DiVoran Lites

Story By Dora Bowers  

DiVoran Rae Bowers-1938

Lovelock, Nevada

    On October 29, 1938, my water broke. The time was 12:15 in the morning. After becoming convinced that the moment had come, Ivan ran for the doctor. Doctor Perry brought him home in his car, then took us to the Lovelock Hospital. In those days, the hospital was just a house with several bedrooms. Dr. Perry observing the timing of my labor left me with the nurse and went back home to finish his night’s sleep. Fourteen hours of labor later, the tired father sneaked into the nursery to see the baby. It was three P. M. on Saturday and there she was, blue as your hat and not a fit sight to see. For Ivan, it was hardly love at first sight because the first sight was bad–very bad. By the next time we saw her, she looked better. She had tiny ears, a nicely shaped head, a small mouth, and blue eyes. Her hair was the same color as Mama’s and Daddy’s which was dark brown. When one of her beautiful little hands curled around my thumb I knew those hands were the things I loved best about her, although it was hard to choose.  

Photo-Pixabay

A nurse brought her to me, but neither baby nor I knew how to go about breastfeeding. The nurse helped and finally, we managed with the aid of a breast shield. The next problem was naming her. After all, one couldn’t go through life with the name of She. The catch was that we had been prepared for her to be a he. After four days of our calling her Rae, the nurse, Mrs. Smith, came in and told us that we had to give her a full name so we could get the birth certificate. The nurses were trying to help. I asked, “How about Alice Rae? My best friend’s name was Alice, but Ivan didn’t like that name for our daughter. One of the nurses then suggested we put the letters of each name together. Ivan and Dora. When we decided on Divoran Rae Bowers, we thought we were finished but that wasn’t the end of it. The other nurse, Mrs. Romaine, suggested two capitals, one for each parent’s name. We worked it out and decided on DiVoran. As for the Rae, that came first from her father’s name, Ivan Ray, second from an another friend’s name, and third from the ray of sunshine that came through the window of the operating room when she was born. That ray meant hope to her mother after the long labor. So we have recorded the first week of DiVoran’s life. She weighed seven and three-quarter pounds when she was born. Her grandma, my mother, Mabel Bedell, had come from Canon City to be with us when we went home. She was a practical nurse and a big help. Home, at last, DiVoran was beginning to settle in, but when she fainted in my arms one day, we took her to the doctor as quick as we could. His diagnosis was that my breast milk wasn’t rich enough. I felt sad about that, but Dr. Perry ordered, Mellin’s food, lime water, and sugar of milk for her and we put her on the bottle. I thought that would work better, but still, she failed to thrive.

To Be Continued

Author, Poet and Artist
  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.”

Writing 2

29 Apr

My Take

DiVoran Lites

    When Mother was ninety years old she had to go to an assisted living facility. She wrote and told me she couldn’t write any more letters because she had slipped and hit her head on a dresser. I suppose she felt fogginess descending. I kept writing, and Bill and I went to California to be close to her when my brother and his wife needed a break. Eventually, Mother could no longer manage to talk on the phone. I felt bereft, but I still had God as a correspondent. I journaled daily during my morning devotions. I liked to paraphrase scripture exactly as if God was talking directly to me. Instead of writing: “For God so Loved the World, that He gave His only begotten Son,” I could write “Beloved, I loved the world so much that I gave my dearly beloved son so that you could live a free and blessed life.” It’s what I do privately. I’m not trying to rewrite the Bible or anything like that. I kept two things in mind: 1. Write from the first-personpoint of view as though God is speaking.  2. Cut out the future tenses. For instance,if the Bible says something like, I will comfort you, I simply write I comfort you.That makes it more immediate and it shows me I don’t have to wait and wonder when he will do something because I am His, and He is already doing it. In the morning I take my coffee into my office and turn on soft Christian music. I remain still and meditative to see what I’m to do each morning. Sometimes I feel inspired to draw and paint, sometimes I write down problems, sometimes I free-write what I think God is most likely telling me, I try for everything to chime with the Bible. I choose scriptures that are plainly for a believer who wants to obey God. It can get pretty depressing to read the warnings that are meant for those who ignore him. In other words, it is important for me to stay positive. I run everything together with what He is saying and what is in my heart and brain. When I read it again I feel loved and comforted, and that is how I know God has been talking to me. When I first started I got Peter Lord’s first two books which had tips about knowing God and were made to write in. They asked only for a short amount of time from us. After that,I started buying my own inexpensive spiral notebooks. From there I began to splurge and buy hardcover blank books. Next came spiral sketchbooks with lots of lovely white paper. I have 134 full ones now. They live on my sturdy closet shelves in two bedrooms. Writing in a journal is a habit. I love to get Bible verses from various sources and read different translations. I like the Bible apps that have so many versions, but I like my printed Bibles too.  

Here’s a sample of how some of my journals look in the closet.

  At times I wonder if anyone else will ever read them, but I’m not concerned about it. I’m not saying this method is for everyone. I’m retired and I’ve always liked to write. People can spend time with God in many ways. Problems and questions are solved in these sessions and they make fears and worries flee. Instead of being a navel-gazer, trying to figure out what I did wrong and how to make up for it, I am learning to start singing God’s praises and thanking him for everything, good and bad. Praise comes and joy then appears. The Lord lifts my spirits and gently tells me what to do next. If it’s asking for forgiveness he will show me what to do and when. If I need encouragement to do something I feel He wants me to do, His guidance and power come gently. “The Joy of the Lord is my strength,” or to make it plain and easy I can hear in my heart that He is saying, “My joy is your strength.”    
Author, Poet and Artist
  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.”

Writing

22 Apr

My Take
DiVoran Lites

As I was growing up, I didn’t realize that my mother, Dora, was a journal keeper. Now that I am older I appreciate her stories and cherish her handwriting more than ever. She wrote about her ordinary life if there is such a thing. Lately, I’ve been posting some of Mother’s stories on Old Things R New. I’m grateful for the opportunity to share something so close to my heart.


Dora didn’t write much growing up, but she paid attention to everything. When I was born she filled a baby-book hand-made by an inmate at the penitentiary where my grandfather worked. Though the book is primitive, you can see that the convict who made it took time to do a good job. I have wondered if perhaps he had a little girl, too.

Dora wrote more after she retired. She also assembled a family history for my brother and me and sent along a few ancestor stories to go with the names and dates. I’m not really into genealogy, but I have enjoyed referring to the wheel now and then over the years. I see now that it needs refurbishing.

When we were small Mother told us stories. She could ask us to give her three words and then make up a tale from them. Some of them were probably about our beloved dog, Brownie.

Mother was a good role model. When I was twelve, she started a Girl Scout troupe. She also bought me a Girl Scout diary and I filled it with youthful chatter. When I was in high-school I got a red one and wrote about my boyfriends and girlfriends.. After I married Bill, I received a white one and filled it with a young wife and mother’s observances.
When Bill and I moved to Titusville with our children, we began to understand the Bible better and to form a deeper relationship with Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Both our pastor, Peter Lord and his wife Johnny Lord taught us ways to know God for ourselves and brought in wonderful guest speakers to enhance their teaching.

One of the things Peter Lord suggested was that we write letters to God. I could handle that. After all, Mother and I had been writing to each other since I left home eight years earlier. For over forty years, letters flew between California and Florida with real visits in between. That’s about 4,000 letters crossing in the mail. I enjoyed that, and because I did, I started writing to God too.

To be Continued

Author, Poet and Artist

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.”

 

Lovelock Wedding

15 Apr

My Take

DiVoran Lites

As told by DiVoran’s mother, Dora Bowers

Dora Bedell became Mrs. Ivan Bowers on April 27, 1937. I put on the rose flowered dress because the long white one didn’t seem right for a small group wedding. Ivan’s dad had arranged for me to have a rose corsage, and the fragrance of those roses has reminded me of that day ever since.

We were married in the basement of the Baptist Church between Sunday School and church by Reverend Swabackland. Lucille and Glen stood up for us.  Two of their friends and a child were there. After the wedding, we all went to Glen and Lucille’s for chicken and noodles Sunday dinner.

The ladies of the First Baptist Church of Canon City sent us a shower by mail. We got handmade lunch cloths, pillowcases, and tea towels. Most of the shower gifts were hand hemmed, embroidered, and crocheted. Mother and Dad got us an electric iron. Ivan’s mother and dad got us silver-plate flatware.

We spent our first night in Lovelock at the better hotel on the right side of the tracks. There were slot machines all over the lobby. Ivan put a nickel in one and a jackpot of nickels poured out. But a nickel jackpot didn’t go far and we were running out of money, so after the first night, we moved to the Big Meadows Hotel across the tracks. Accommodations took the last $20 of the original $80.00 we started out with. 

Ivan was making $27.50 per week. After the Big Meadows, we rented a large, empty house, empty except for a bed and a table. Lovelock, the county seat, had a population of 2300 and drew Black Foot Indians off the reservation, and miners and ranchers came from a hundred miles away in all directions. Between Safeway and home, 13 bars and gambling parlors and 3 houses of ill repute nearly filled the main street.

We still lived on the wrong side of the tracks and Ivan had to walk past about half those places with his weekly paycheck to get home. One Saturday night, he lost the week’s wages gambling. After that, I met him and walked home with him. I imagine that was when he first felt truly married. 

I remember though, that I always felt safe with him. He kept a butcher knife by the bed to protect us from the many railroad bums who jumped off the boxcars of the Reno-Salt Lake City train and roamed Lovelock looking for handouts before they got back into the boxcars.

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