Tag Archives: Family Memories

Animal Parade

18 Nov

My Take

DiVoran Lites

By Dora Bowers as told to DiVoran Lites

Crowley, Colorado 1942-43

Description: Goats, Mom And Child, Kid, Small, Cute, Young, Fur
Pixabay

Around the time that David learned to walk well, we had a Mama goat named Petaluma and a baby goat named Billy. We also had a dog named ginger and a black cat. Sometimes in the afternoon between washing and drying dinner dishes and starting supper, we all walked along beside the irrigation ditch to the factory to see Ivan. For some reason, we always fell into a line, maybe according to whose legs were longest. First came Dode (which was me) then Doo Doo (which was the only way David could say DiVoran’s name) then David who we called Dab because of the letters of his name: David Allen Bowers. 

Description: Dog, Toller, Pet, Retriever
Pixabay
Description: Kitten, Cat, Black Cat, Domestic Cat, Pets, Animal
Pixabay

Then came Billy the little goat. Billy liked to detour, his divided hooves clicking over the glass which covered the new tomato plants. He stepped so daintily, he never cracked a single pane. After Billy-goat came Ginger the Heinz 57 dog with short forays to check out rabbit smells, and then the cat, always alert for field mice. Momma goat, Petaluma never went along and she wouldn’t tell me why. I suspected it was because she wanted some time to herself, or maybe I thought that because I was in tune with mamas needing just that. 

Description: Bantam, Rooster, Chickens, Farm, Domestic
Pixabay

Chanticleer the banty rooster was another member of the family that didn’t go along on the walk. He was a cocky and colorful little character, but he had a bad sense of timing. Day and night trains carrying troops and equipment for the war came down the railroad tracks behind our house. At night, when it was dark, Chanticleer couldn’t tell the difference between light from the streamliner and light from the rising sun. Whenever Chanticleer saw the light, he crowed, even if it was only 3:00 a. m. The noise would wake us and all the hard-working neighbors out of a well-earned night’s sleep. Chanticleer had to go.

He ended up in the pot, but no matter how long we stewed him (and we even served noodles with him) he turned out to be awfully hard to chew and for a while, we lost our taste for chicken. DiVoran’s tears when she guessed what we were trying to eat.

There in Crowley, we had young friends with children the age of ours, so Dave and DiVoran had playmates. We wives cleaned our houses on Friday then raced to see who could get to the other’s house first so their own would not be messed up with the children’s play. 

In 1943, when Dave was two and DiVoran 5, more and more countries became involved with the war. In the United States, some men were being drafted and others volunteered for service. Although deferments were usually given to men with small children; as well as to men who produced and preserved food, Ivan felt he must at least go down to the draft office and see if they needed him. They needed him—even though he worked in a canning factory, had small children and even flat feet. “By that time in the war all they required was a man with warm blood.”

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.”

A New Baby-2

4 Nov

My Take

DiVoran Lites

As told to DiVoran Lites by Dora Bowers 

Canon City, Colorado, 1941

Description: https://cdn.pixabay.com/photo/2016/11/19/14/28/people-1839564_960_720.jpg

Photo credit Pixabay

It was almost time for my second child to be born. Back then, we didn’t have an ultrasound and so had no idea what gender the child crowding my womb would turn out to be. The doctor checked me out and said the baby seemed to be in a breech position. That was a bad thing, but fortunately, Dr. Perry had delivered hundreds of babies. I was listening to the song, “Chattanooga Choo-Choo,” on the radio when my water broke. It was time to go to the hospital, but because I didn’t want to spend as many hours there as I did with DiVoran’s birth, I put off the trip. Dr. Perry barely had time to turn the child so that he came out feet first. David Allen Bowers was born at St. Thomas Moore Hospital on June 14, 1941, in Canon City, Colorado. Flag Day. 

I remember the first time I kissed our baby’s cheek. His skin felt like silk velvet. It smelled clean and new and was such a wonderful experience that I never forgot it.

For a time my mother Mabel and Ivan’s mother Marie scheduled themselves to help with the two children and the household one at a time. Ivan, tired and dirty from working at the gas plant, had no energy to help. DiVoran, aged three did her part by patting David in his crib and singing to him over and over, “Baby go night-night.”

Just as I prayed he would, David “grew in wisdom and stature and in favor with God and man”. (Luke 2:52) 

We four moved to Crowley where Dad got a job at a tomato factory keeping the machinery running. There, we lived in part of a section house with a small yard and a railroad track behind us. We raised chickens and had a nanny goat who had just had her baby too. The milk was good for all three of the kids. 

The house had a front door and a back door, but there were no doors on the inside. We had to go out one door and walk to the back or front of the house and go in the other door. In desperation, Ivan knocked a hole in the wall between our bedroom and the kids’ room so we could reach through to tend to baby David in his crib. Finally, Ivan decided to cut interior doors so we could go from room to room without going outside. That was a relief!

When David was big enough (or so I thought) we swam in the retaining pond near our house. I suspended David from an inner tube by his arms and he hung there kicking his tiny feet and enjoying the cool water. When I looked away for a second his inner tube had upended, and all I could see was his bottom and his feet sticking up. When I rescued him he coughed and spluttered but thank the Good Lord he was fine.

It was my job to feed the tomato harvesters three big meals a day. The oven leaked ashes that peppered the homemade pies, but the men were so hungry they never seemed to notice. The big boss came for his meals when they left for the field or if the workday was over going to their rooms in the section house, or maybe down to the bars if it was payday. 

Knowing it was important for children to have fresh air and sunshine, I put them outside in the small fenced playground their daddy made for them and they played happily in the sandbox and on the low swing. DiVoran was big enough by this time to look after her brother. Whenever a train went by they ran to the fence and waved to the conductor who always waved back from the caboose and sometimes the engineer blew the whistle for them. 

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.”

Marie’s Notes 5

21 Oct

My Take

DiVoran Lites

Marie’s youngest brother, Paul, had a hickory rocking chair made by their great grandfather, William Henry Dulgar who came from England with his parents in the early 1800s. I imagine someone in the family has the rocker yet. It has held many mothers rocking their babies and perhaps a few indulgent papas too.

Paul’s son, Dean, had a portrait of William Henry Dulgar in his judge’s robes. For a long time, it hung above the stairwell but eventually, Dean hid it away in the attic because he didn’t want anyone in the family to take it. The tension broke when Cousin Mary persuaded Dean to let her have it copied so that every family could have their own picture. Dean agreed and peace was restored to the family.

“How blessed you are when you make peace! For then you will be recognized as a true child of God.” Matthew 5:9

I had met Dean when my grandparents took me to Illinois to meet my relatives. He and his small sister were beautiful children, and I enjoyed spending time with them. Many years later I was sad to learn that as a young man, Dean took a short-cut over a frozen lake and the ice broke under him. Nobody was there to keep him from drowning. 

Annie, Paul, and Dean

Another ancestor I met was Great Aunt Mae, Marie’s aunt. I met her many years later when she had moved to her daughter’s house in California. We were in Inglewood where Bill attended Northrup University. After I worked for three years to help pay his tuition, we decided to start a family. He got a daytime job and I got a baby which pleased me no end.

I’m glad I got to know so many generations of my family. Aunt Mae had been born in the late 1800s. She moved to California when she was 57 and lived with her daughter Aldyth and died at 88. Aunt Mae’s other daughter, Irene Hunt wrote the children’s book, Across Five Aprils, (1964) which won four awards including the prestigious Newberry Award. It was made into a movie and is still used in schools to fill in the history of the Civil War. Even though many in the family suggested I meet her, it just didn’t happen. I’m about brave enough to meet her now, but alas, it is too late.

Aunt Mae had lots of time for me. She admired the green and black cotton maternity dress with the black velvet bow I had made for myself. She suggested I keep my kitchen clean by wiping down all the cupboards every day. But I didn’t do it. She taught me how to make a crazy quilt from elegant fabrics such as satin and velvet (her materials.) That included teaching me how to make a feather stitch. We talked about things such as shaving legs and underarms and she said she never had to do either because the heavy homespun of her dresses was so rough they wore off all the hair. When our daughter was born, Aunt Mae was her great, great, great, great Aunt. That tickled me too. 

Also when our daughter was born, Aunt Mae’s brother, Marie’s dad, gave the baby a rubber doggy that squeaked. I held onto to that for a lot of years knowing it was from little Renie’s great-great grandfather. 

Remember, Jasper Dulgar knowing all the property owners in Jasper County Illinois? Well, apparently his daughter who turned out to be Aunt Mae wouldn’t let people ask him about who owned what property after he was 96 because it was making him too nervous. 

I think this is all of Marie’s notes, but I still have a big box of letters and notes to go through, so I’ll see what I find. Thank you for your “Likes.” 

Grandpa Dulgar and DiVoran c 1940 at Marie’s house on Main Street in Canon City, Colorado.

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.”

A Block in Each Hand

16 Jul

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

I really must brag a little bit here…you will understand as this missive progresses.

Our oldest daughter, Karen, was born in Wiesbaden, West Germany.  She was already on-the-way when we flew over there for Fred’s Air Force assignment.  We were absolutely thrilled that she made her appearance pretty much on schedule.

I have a picture of her – and a cute memory – of an occurrence when she was seven months old. 

She wasn’t walking yet – or talking yet – but she looovvvved her Daddy.

I had her sitting on our bed this one particular instance and was talking to her, when Fred happened to walk past the bedroom doorway.  He did NOT come into the room.  Karen saw him walk by, and reached out her arm, as if to say – DADDY…COME HERE!  And here’s that picture.

Karen – 7 months old, Wiesbaden, Germany

I’m not quite sure just when I learned the following “trick” for when children are learning to walk, and whether or not I used it with our two girls, but somewhere along the line, I learned to do this, and have passed it along to many new mothers and fathers.  I thought I had told both of our girls when their children were growing up, but neither remembers me telling them about it.

To describe it:  I might have mentioned in previous postings that Fred and I have a great-grandson, Silas. 

Silas – 8 months old

Karen and her husband, Brian, get to see him quite often – about once a week, as they go to Forrest and Alyssa’s house to “babysit” so Forrest and Alyssa can have some time off and together time.

Forrest, Alyssa and Silas

Recently, while they were babysitting, Karen did a “duo” cell phone call with us, where we can see that adorable great-grandson of ours, and he can see us. He was a busy little bee that day. He also had one of those push-type toys that he was pushing and walking behind throughout the house.  At one point, Silas took Brian’s fingers in his little hand and began to “walk” around the house.

And so – here comes the “trick” – I mentioned to Karen and Brian that they – or Forrest and Alyssa – should put a block in each of his hands, and he would walk! He thinks that he is holding on to something or someone, and it gives him the assurance that he can really walk!

Credit Pixabay

And what to our surprise, but Karen sent us a VERY short (six seconds!) video of Silas walking – with a block in each hand!!  She said they had suggested it to Forrest and Alyssa, and they actually did it.  And they gave me credit for the suggestion!  (That’s where the bragging part comes in!)

So…if ever you or someone you know wants to encourage a small child to “walk” without help – just put a block in each hand – and watch them go!  It really works!

Judy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years .

  Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing. Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.

After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins as well as a great-grandson. She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Some Random Thoughts…

31 Mar

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

 

 There are times when it seems like nothing comes to my mind to write about.  And then I will have some fleeting thoughts flit through my mind and disappear just as quickly.  Sometimes I can grab hold of some of them and put them down on paper – or in this case, on the page in the computer.

That happened recently, and here is what I grabbed onto:

When our oldest grandson was born and grew from a baby to a little boy, I was pleased to see that he looked like he would have more of the “Wills” side of the family than his father’s side.

 

One of my favorite pictures of a very young Forrest

 

But as he grew into his teen years, I saw him evolving into his father’s features more and more.  Not surprising, and he became a very handsome young man.  I suppose I shouldn’t have been surprised – as here is one of my favorite pictures of Forrest with  his father and him, at a very early age.  They could be twins!

 

Brian and Forrest

 

But now Forrest is a grown man, and married to a delightful young lady, they have given us our first great-grandchild! Karen (our firstborn – and Forrest’s mother) and I were discussing Forrest and Silas (Forrest’s son – our great-grandson) not too long ago, and I was trying to determine who I think Silas looks like.  Karen stated that she sees my Fred in Forrest…..and I’m sure my jaw dropped to the floor!  I had never considered that!

 

However, here is a picture I found recently, where I can see the resemblance.  When I saw the picture, my thought was – “there’s Forrest!!”  Amazing.  And here I didn’t think there was any Wills influence in him at all.  Silly me.  What do you think of this comparison?

 

Fred and Karen, 1969 – Karen is 2 years old

Forrest, Alyssa and baby Silas

 

How Silas measures up remains to be seen. Hope Fred and I live long enough to see how that unfolds.

More next week…

 

 

 

JUDYJudy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years
Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing.
Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.
After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.
She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins.
She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

White Sands

24 Feb

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

 

Have you ever had the opportunity to “play” in a sand dune?  I remember outside of Albuquerque, New Mexico, where I grew up, were some great sand dunes, and we used to drive there and just spend time romping through the dunes. It was great fun!

However, I remember once when I was working in a multi-storied building downtown that we were able to watch a huge sandstorm blowing from the east into town.  It was blowing a lot of that sand from the dunes – and it was a rather frightening thing to see.

Each of our 50 United States has a state motto. New Mexico’s motto is: The Land of Enchantment.  And then, when you are out in a sand storm, you must be careful not to get any of that “enchantment” in your eyes!

 

 

Perhaps you’ve heard of White Sands, New Mexico? It’s a U.S. National Monument (part of the U.S. National Park Service), and is located between Las Cruces and Alamogordo, in central-southern New Mexico.  It was established as a National Monument in 1933.  It’s also near Holloman AFB.

 

Credit Google Search and National Park Service

 

On March 30, 1982, the space shuttle Columbia landed at the White Sands Missile Range, after being diverted from Edwards AFB in California.  Bad weather at Edwards had made the landing strip there too wet to handle the weight of the shuttle.

 

Space Shuttle Columbia landing at White Sands Missile Range, 1982

Credit Google Search and NASA website

According to Wikipedia:   Its white sands are not composed of quartz, like most desert sands, but of gypsum and calcium sulfate. Unlike other desert sands, it is cool to the touch, due to the high rate of evaporation of surface moisture and the fact that the sands reflect, rather than absorb, the sun’s rays. At 1185 meters [3888 feet] above sea level, there are approximately 442 square kilometers [162 square miles]of dune fields and is known to be the world’s largest surface deposit of gypsum.

 

Do you know the difference between a National Park and a National Monument?  I didn’t for a long time.  Here is an explanation I found online:

According to the National Park Service, “a national park is intended to preserve at least one nationally significant resource, whereas a national monument is usually larger and preserves a variety of nationally significant resources.”

 

If you have ever walked on a “beach” with the brown sand that is associated with beaches everywhere (except Panama City, Florida, whose beaches are white sand), you will remember you had to walk really fast – because the sand was so hot!  Not so with the sands at White Sands National Park.

I remember going with family to White Sands several times in my life.  Here are some pictures I have of the park, I’ve marked the ones I purchased.  The others are of my family.

 

Purchased slide – Battle for vegetation

Purchased slide

Purchased slide

My Granny and her sister – 1959

My Granny holding their dog, Trixie,

Granny’s sister and her husband,

a friend of the family

Granny and Trixie, inspecting the sand

 

This picture on the website caught my attention. The write-up stated:  Moonlight hikes and sunset tours are available throughout the year from the visitor center, so visitors can get a whole new perspective as the light changes.

 

Credit Google Search and White Sands website

 

If you are ever in that area, be sure and give the White Sands National Monument a visit.  It is well worth the time to get THAT sand in your shoes!!

 

 

JUDYJudy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years
Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing.
Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.
After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.
She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins.
She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

That Cockroach

17 Feb

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

 

Back in 1990, our Aunt Jessie died.  She was the only “Auntie” on my mother’s side, and was quite special to my brother and me.  She was an antique expert, and had many items of antiques in her home – be it furniture or dishes, or whatever.

 

Jessie and some of her antiques

 

At this point, I want to copy from an older post of mine about Aunt Jessie:

Unfortunately, Jessie never thought any of us wanted anything of hers.  Because none of us had expressed an interest in any of her things, some time before she died I suggested we should all make a list of her things we wanted, and give it to her.  If there was a duplication in “wishes” – hers was to be the final decision. She was quite delighted to see how much we loved her things, after all.  And, I must admit that, after I had made my “list,” I finished it with the statement that we would rather have HER in our lives than anything of hers….but that we loved her and wanted to have keepsakes of her.

Consequently, we all were able to acquire something of Jessie’s that we loved, and reminded us of her.  One of the items was her car.

 

 

Bill and DiVoran drove it from Albuquerque to Florida.  He kept that car for many years.  Here’s his description:

Jessie’s car that I bought from mother after Jessie died was a 1978 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme, that had only about 75,000 miles on it. It was in excellent shape, having been a “high-desert” car (no humidity) and having been kept in the garage all its life (no rust). I had the entire car Ziebart rust-protected and undercoated as soon as we got home to Florida.  After all the years I drove that car in our Florida weather (and with it parked in our driveway), it still had very little (if any) rust on it (and still had just over 150,000 miles on the speedometer) when I traded it in on the 1984 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme we bought in 1988. That’s about all I can remember.

 

At one point, Fred and I (and I think Janet) came down to Florida from Virginia for a visit.  It was probably Spring Break, but I’m not sure.  I do remember Mother was with us.

We were out one day, riding in that Olds.  It was a two-door car, and I was sitting in the back seat.  I saw a “movement” of some sort out of the corner of my eye.  I looked down and saw – A COCKROACH!  I let out a yelp and Bill, who was driving, said, “what’s the matter?  What is it?”

I said, “there’s a cockroach back here!!”

Bill looked at DiVoran and said, “I thought you took care of that roach!”  And DiVoran then looked at Bill and said, “I thought YOU took care of that roach!”

We continued on our journey, but I made good and sure that I didn’t see that roach at any other time on the trip!  I hate cockroaches!!!  I’m sorry God saw fit to make that particular insect!

 

Credit Google Search and http://www.schendelpest.com

 

 

 

JUDYJudy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years
Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing.
Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.
After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.
She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins.
She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

A Sweet Memory

27 Jan

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

 

 

I have mentioned, in previous postings, that my Father came from a large family – he was number five in a group of 13 children. He was born in 1892, and was 20 years older than my Mother.

 

10 of the 13 children – 1936-1938  Daddy is fourth from left. Uncle Ed is on the left.

 

I think his closest sibling was a brother, Edwin, who we called Uncle Ed, or E.O.  He had left the family farm, went to college, and had a typewriter shop in Shreveport, Louisiana.  He had married, but had no children.  He became a widower in about 1961.

While Fred and I lived in Fort Worth, Texas, he married a lovely lady, Joecilla, who had been widowed very young, after about four years of marriage, and never married again – until she met Uncle Ed. He moved to her house outside of Shreveport.

 

Uncle Ed and Aunt Joecilla visiting Albuquerque, New Mexico – 1960’s

 

When our little family was moving from San Antonio, Texas to Florida in 1974, we stopped to visit and stay with Uncle Ed and Aunt Joecilla for a few days.  She had a dress shop in her little town, and women from Shreveport would drive the 30 miles from Shreveport to shop in her store.  She had quite good taste in clothing.

Uncle Ed was two years older than my Father, and at his age at that time – 84 – was in rather ill health.  As a footnote – my father had already passed away by this time.

To tell this story, I must brag a bit here – both of our daughters were reading before they ever went to school.  That includes kindergarten at age five.  I have always said that being able to read is probably one of the most important things in life.  If you can’t read, you can’t do math, since many math problems are word problems.

I have a sweet memory stored away in my mind of Karen, sitting on that big blue couch in the picture below, with a book on her lap, as if she were reading it.  She was about three years old, and the book was upside down!  But she wanted to read so badly, she was trying to make the words work for her.

In any case, at this point of time, our Karen was seven-years-old (7) and Janet was four-years-old (4).

 

 

Karen had been through kindergarten and first grade before we moved to Florida.  However, she and I had been reading together since she was quite small, and by the time she was in kindergarten, she was one of only a few in her class that finished the reading program the school offered.

All of that is important to this story.  You see, while we were visiting Uncle Ed and Aunt Joecilla in 1974, there was one day that I went looking for Karen for some reason.  I couldn’t seem to find her anywhere.  However, when I looked in the den, there was Uncle Ed, stretched out on the sofa with an afghan draped over him.  And there was Karen, sitting on a stool at his side, reading a story to him!  He was enraptured with her and her story!  I have no remembrance of the story she was reading, but she was having a great time reading to him, and he was having a great time listening to her!  They just enjoyed each others’ company.  I waited until she had finished the story before approaching her with whatever I needed her to do.  I most certainly didn’t want to interrupt that sweet time between the two of them.

As I said – it is a sweet memory for me.

And just incidentally – she is a librarian now!

 

JUDYJudy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years
Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing.
Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.
After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.
She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins.
She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

My Children in Church~Part 2

20 Jan

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

 

 

As I mentioned in my previous posting, a memory came to my mind recently that caused me to giggle.  When I described it to Fred, my husband, he chuckled, as well. Hope you think it’s funny, as well.

Also as I mentioned, we were in a fairly large church at that time – the time of this incident.

 

Credit Google Search and First Baptist Church, Panama City, Florida website

 

Because it was a large church, the Minister of Music wanted the choir to stay in the choir loft during the entire morning service, and, surprisingly, he wanted us to stay up in the choir loft during the EVENING service, as well.  Being dutiful choir members, we did just that.  We weren’t too keen on staying up during the evening service, as that meant that we were never able to sit with our children during any worship service. But that was a sacrifice we made, to be part of the music program at that church.

Well, I know that children will get into all kinds of trouble in church.  Just the nature of the beast, I guess.  I remember some stunts I pulled as a child, so I guess I should have expected our girls to follow along that path.  And they did!

But this one particular evening service – it was along about the same time frame as the incident mentioned in my previous post – as I was in the choir, listening to the pastor give his sermon, that I noticed our two girls.  They happened to be sitting with two of their good friends.  The boys’ mother was also in the choir with us.

I noticed that all four of the children would look down together at something in the hands of one of the boys.  And then they would look way up.  That puzzled me.  What in the world were they looking at?  Look down….look way up…..look down….look way up.  On and on it went.  I finally managed to look up at the same time they did – and what did I see? The reflection of a hand-held mirror, bouncing off the mirror from one of the chandeliers in the Sanctuary – and hitting the ceiling of the Sanctuary!  He must have finally found just the right angle for the mirror to reflect on the ceiling!

Before I had time to get up and leave the choir loft – the service ended.  As you might imagine, I made a mad dash to the children!!  I told them two things: 1) you four are NEVER to sit together again. 2) don’t ever bring a mirror into the Sanctuary again!  Actually, I told the girls a third thing – LOOK AT ME OCCASIONALLY!!  I would give them “the look” and they knew that I meant for them to stop whatever they were doing and SIT STILL!  Pay attention to what was being said!

Oh well, kids will be kids, I guess.  But it’s a funny memory to have.  And, as I posted last time:

Children are a heritage from the Lord….

Psalm 127:3

 

Karen and Janet – 1976

 

 

 

JUDYJudy is living in Central Florida with her retired U.S. Air Force husband of 50+ years. Born in Dallas, Texas, she grew up in the Southwestern United States.She met her husband at their church, where he was attending the university in her town. After college and seminary, he entered the Air Force, and their adventures began.They lived in eight of our United States, and spent six years in Europe, where their oldest daughter was born. She was a stay-at-home mom for many years
Judy has always been involved with music, both playing the piano and singing.
Always interested in exercise, she was an aerobic dancing instructor, as well as a piano teacher for many years, and continues to faithfully exercise at home.
After moving to Central Florida, she served as a church secretary for nearly nine years.Her main hobby at this point in time is scanning pictures and 35mm slides into the computer. She also enjoys scrapbooking.
She and her husband have two married daughters and four grandchildren, including grandtwins.
She and her husband enjoy the Disney parks as often as possible.

Hermit Dam

8 Jul

My Take

DiVoran Lites

 

Our family, Ivan, Dora, DiVoran, andDavid moved to Westcliffe after Dad came home from WWII. We lived in the Wet Mountain Valley with the Sangre de Cristo Range to the west of us.

 

 

 

This is part of the 9.6-mile road to Hermit Dam. Nowadays it is considered one of the most dangerous roads in America and one of the ten highest in Colorado. The road becomes a trail before you get to the lake, so you must get out of your four-wheeled vehicle and walk. No horses are allowed on the road or on the trail. I have a bit of news about that. Tell you later.

 

Hermit Lake

 

Dad became involved withthe local men who hunted and fished in the mountains. He enjoyedhelpingstock the lake with Rainbow, Brown, Cutthroat, and Brook trout from a small private airplane. He also took tourists on tours up into the mountains, on horseback.

By the time he was eight, David was a better horseman than I, so he would ride Dixie, a skittish paint, and I’d ride Derby a more gentle soul. One time going back down, we got ahead of the parents and came to a fork in the trail. In that spot we were on flat ground, so we decided to gallop. David and Dixie went first and as always, Derby and I followed their hard pace. Then the trail forked and Dixie took the left side. Fully expecting my horse to follow I leaned left. This was one time, however,that my horse sense failed me. Derby served to the right and I flew off, thus receiving my first flying lesson. Thank the Lord I was not hurt. The parents were still lollygagging behind and never knew a thing about our shenanigans.

Another time I went swimming in a freezing cold alpine lake made by a beaver dam. When I got out I couldn’t stop shivering, but everybody thought I was pretty brave, so it was worth it.

One fine spring day we were in the mountains and mother made a camping stew. We always kidded her that she put everything in the pot including cans of sardines and peaches. This particular day, she found dandelions growing and stripped them of their leaves to cook apart from the stew. She had been a campfire girl and knew a lot about camping and nature. She would never pull a wildflower out by the roots because then they wouldn’t be able to grow again. As we sat down to eat, giant snowflakes fell, but it was only one of those spring storms and uskids enjoyed catching the cold flakes on our tongues.

When I grew up, I married Bill and we had two children. Bill got laid off from work at the Cape and we took a six-week camping trip out west with our children.

We went to Westcliffe so the kids could see the schools I’d gone to, and where I had lived with my family. While we were there, I urged Bill to go on up to Hermit Lake so they could all see where good times with my family took place. We didn’t know it required a four-wheelvehicle. I will let Bill tell you rest:

 

“This was the roughest road (if you could call it a road) I had ever traveled in any kind of vehicle.  Here we were in a 1958 Ford station wagon (adjusted for sea level operations), pulling a pop-up camper up that one-lane road to an altitude of almost 12,000 feet.  Once we started up that road, we had to keep going.  At some points,we were moving no faster thana slow walk, having to steer around large boulders.

“I was getting worried that we would not be able to find a place to turn aroundwhen after two hours we came to the end of the nine miles of road. Luckily there was a flat space just large enough that we could turn around. Since it was getting dark we decided to set up the camper and spend the night there. Even though it was summertime, at that altitude the night was cold. The next morning we cooked breakfast, packed up the camper and got ready to head back to Westcliffe.  Well,guess what?  The car wouldn’t start!

It seems we had developed tiny cracks in the spark plugwires.  Now, with the air at this high altitude being so thin, the spark was jumping from the spark plugwires to the block, and not to the plugs. I removed the wire from each plug, cleaned and dried it, wrapped electrical tape around it, and reinstalled it. That coupled with the rising afternoon temperature, seemed to do the trick. With the car running, we now embarked on our two-hour adventure back down the mountain to Westcliffe.  WOW– What a trip!  I sure don’t want to ever have to make a trip like that again.

As I remember it, the reason we didn’t walk on up to the lake that morning was that the clouds were covering the mountain below us and we could barely see the road to get down, so we wouldn’t have been able to see the lake which was higher than where we camped.”

 

Thanks, Bill, not only for writing your take on itbut for getting us out of every jam we’ve been in for most of our lives. I thank God for you.

For years I’ve thought my life was regular and uneventful, but when I look back now and see the things I was privileged to participate in I know I had many adventures that perhaps others had not had. I also thank God for my mother, father, and brother and for all the things we did together.

Here’s a YouTube link that shows the road to Hermit Dam as it is now.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3iRqcN1Ozv0

 

 

 

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.”

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