Monday, November 30, 2009

End of November

Time to reflect as I look back at a busy month. Some of my ACCOMPLISHMENTS in November:

(1) Publishing an expanded LOOKING BACK book
(2) Selling books at the Sunriver CRAFT FAIR
(3) Attending classes about Utah GEOLOGY
(4) Giving a class on BLOGGING for Heritage Writers Guild (HWG)
(5) Publishing my LAST newsletter after 17 issues as HWG editor
(6) Blogging DAILY and keeping up with my friend's blogs
(7) TEACHING my sunday school class on family history
(8) Enjoying THANKSGIVING dinner and time with my family
(9) Helping with the BABY SHOWER for Rachel
(10) EXERCISING lots and LOOSING two pounds which I regained over Thanksgiving! Good thing I'll be teaching a class on Become a Healthier SLIMMER YOU in January 2010 for Dixie Comm. Ed.

Now looking forward to new CELEBRATIONS in December besides Christmas: a new grand daughter Lorien's birth eagerly anticipated-what a Christmas present as well as my son-the new father to be will be graduating from UVU with his bachelor's degree as he celebrates his birthday Dec 13th. The new generation is rising and working their way towards being grandparents one day. They don't realize that, but it sneaks up on you with each passing day. It's called LIFE.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Child Rearing

I love my grandkids dearly but sometimes
their noisiness drives me a little nutty.
So it's always a sense of relief, when it's
time to head home to our retirement nest.

I know why young couples have children.
By the time you reach my age, you are out
of patience to deal with the daily discipline
required to reach today's modern children.

I'm happy just to visit, read stories and listen,
while I leave it up to my son and dg-in-law to
discipline, train and deal with the day to day
problems; love and patience are required.

It's not easy being a parent, I know because
I parented for 35 years, sometimes patiently
and sometimes frustrated, especially during
their teen years. Now it's my time to watch.

As I see some of my grand children approaching
their teen years, it's a time of turmoil and self
questioning as each child tries to find their place.
All I can do is love each of them unconditionally.

(Photos from baby shower; girl baby is Rachel's niece
Lizzie in pink, and Elijah-a friend's boy baby in blue;
expectant couple is my son Jeff and his wife Rachel.)

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Baby Shower

It's going to be a girl named Lorien. I made a decorative name sign for her room just like I have for all my grandkids out of stuffed felt. (Click photo to enlarge.)

This is a bootie, sweater and cap I knitted for my first baby in 1965 but he (Frank) was not a girl so I've saved it for 44 years (and the births of three more sons) for a grand daughter to be. My first two grand daughters were twins and adopted at age 9 months so this set didn't work for them. It will be a shower gift for my daughter-in-law Rachel who is expecting a GIRL on Dec. 29th.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Thanksgiving Activities

I was trying to keep the little ones (grandkids) entertained yesterday. We made dinner place cards with turkeys. It was fun and creative with fuzz balls and pipe cleaners. In years past, we have filled the cards with comments of thanks for each person. This year it was easier because of their young ages to just make the cards. (Click to enlarge photos. Above Nathan and James, below Nathan, Emilee and Heather.)

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Article #80 Parenting our Parents

Unfortunately, there does come the time in our lives when our parents need our constant care. Not able to live independently without some assistance, we may discover it’s time for us to parent our parents. It’s not an easy transition for any of us. I recall at my mom’s funeral, my oldest son saying to his younger brothers…Well, we need to think ahead of how we’re going to take care of mom (me). That was a strange situation because here I was the person who had just been responsible for my mom’s 24/7 care, finances, health needs, and my son was already thinking ahead to my possible declining years.

First of all, he needs to know that not everyone has to have help in his or her golden years. Many seniors can live independently quite nicely without support from their families. Others like my mom suffer from ill health and need either family care or an assisted care facility. My mom lived alone till she was 88, then realized she couldn’t continue to take care of her home, shop for groceries, drive to medical appointments, etc. without help. Being her only child and living some 200 miles away didn’t help the situation. Not wanting to move in with family and disrupt our lives, mom opted to go to a local assisted care center.
Moving her and organizing all her belongings gathered over a lifetime was not easy. It was extremely stressful and took much patience, probably as much as mom had experienced parenting me. Then helping her make the transition from total independence to living in an assisted care center was even more difficult. As her physical health and mobility declined, she became more childlike. I had to step in and become the all knowing parent-kind, loving and available. Making decisions for her that she didn’t always like or agree upon, knowing she had a terminal illness, and trying to prepare her for death was demanding. How do you prepare your parent to let go of their life and face the fears of their unknown future? You try to do so lovingly, all the time dealing with your own confused emotions of anger and grief. It’s a challenge.

Just as she had spent her life teaching and preparing me for what was ahead, now it was my turn to respectfully try to prepare my parent to depart from her loved ones. (I'm remembering my mom this Thanksgiving, and am thankful for her parenting in my life. Photo above moms l-r: me, my dg-in-law Tina and my mom, kids: Heather, Nathan and Emilee.)

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thankful Thoughts

I was just rereading some of your comments lately and realized how much I enjoy all my blogging friends who make time in their day to write about my daily posts. I also appreciate those who regularly read my blog but don't comment. It's fun to be part of a virtual community and makes up for some of the loneliness I have felt during my lifetime being an only child of a widowed mom with no brothers or sisters. Although, extended family-cousins, aunts and uncles have helped fill in the spaces, and FRIENDS have made all the difference in my life.

Friends who love you despite your faults
who care enough to ask how you are and
then truly listen, blogging buddies who
return day after day and leave encouraging
comments and suggestions to show they care.


Tuesday, November 24, 2009


I have a close friend who is depressed. It's difficult to deal with as I want to make it all better, to help this person see their value and feel good about themselves. But it's not that easy. I wonder why we are so critical of ourselves all the time? Especially as we get older and see the end of our life looming even without serious health issues. It's easy to look back and judge our lives accomplishments too harshly. We all gave it our best shot and that's all you can ask of yourself.

Especially during the holidays, depression comes easily for some people as they think of family and their expectations for their life that never came to be. If you believe this life is all you get, then that is depressing. My faith and belief system gives me HOPE and an understanding of my PURPOSE here in life is to learn and grow. I believe in an afterlife where I'll be with all my family and loved ones in a great REUNION where all our struggles and trials will be better understood. In the meantime we are here to love and serve one another, emulating the life of the Savior.

How do you cope with holiday stresses and depression in yourself or others?

Monday, November 23, 2009


Some people are so easy to work with:
flexible, creative, supportive and caring.
Others are harsh, critical and demanding.
Teamwork doesn't seem to come naturally
to them. They want to always be in control.

Things have to be done their way or it's
the highway. Well, two can play that game.
I choose not to play anymore. Criticized,
feeling used, I left. I know how to do that,
be it: a marriage, a friendship or a job.

I do love to work with others when we
come together and feed off each other
with our love, energy and enthusiasm.
That's called teamwork. It's necessary
for our soul's feeding and daily growth.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Think GREEN!

My blogging friend Michele of Rambling Woods gave her readers a challenge to talk about their appreciation of the earth and attempts to keep it green. Check out her blog sometime, she will teach you a thing or two about nature. So here goes:
(1) I definitely try to recycle more, especially our newspapers and aluminum cans.
(2) I'm trying to conserve on water by turning on the dishwasher only when it's very full.
(3) I love nature and have committed to getting out more and taking photos of the natural beauty in our area and sharing it on my blog.
(4) I'm committed to taking daily walks or bike rides and breathing in the fresh air deeply and being grateful for the different and unusual plants that grow in our desert area.
(5) I'm creating some nature/wildlife poems for my grandkids to help them think more about living things and appreciate-birds, ducks, lizards, etc.

Guess that will do for a start. Tell me what you are doing:

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Saturday again

Have you noticed how fast the days pass
quickly moving from Monday to Friday,
while I'm still doing the breakfast dishes.

Then it's the weekend––two more days
that are too quickly over. Night falls,
morning follows and suddenly it's...

Monday again. All the time, my life
is rushing quickly away from me.
There's no time for me to slow it down.

Only depression can make it extend
into slowness and
I guess I'm happy that it's Saturday again.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Who me?

I'm an awesome bird, I think
Although, my mom never stayed
around long enough to tell me so.

She was off flying circles with some
crazy hawk or other creature.
I don't know who my Dad is,
maybe he looks like me.

I fell out of my empty nest.
There was no one around
to pick me up or
help me learn to fly.

So here I am walking around
like some awkward duck
or goose, though they certainly
look different than me.

Being on the ground
does have its advantages.
There are lots of crawly things
to chase after and eat.

But there are lots of dangers, too.
Humans who want to catch me,
put me in a little gilded cage,
and teach me to sing.

If I can be careful and hide
when I see them or their pets,
I can eat the tasty birdseed
they leave in their birdfeeders.

I'm an awesome bird, I think.
Although, my mom never stayed
around long enough to tell me so.

Thursday, November 19, 2009


Suddenly I’m elderly
being called “dear” and “sweetie,”
helped to cross the street by boy scouts.

Just how did this happen
to little old me while
I was busy doing other things.

At age 16, I couldn't wait to be 18
graduated from high school
ready to take on the world.
Then suddenly I found myself 22
not married but graduated
from college and an old maid.
At age 24, I was finally getting married
with my whole happy life before me.
But ten frustrating years later
found me getting a divorce and
a single parent of three lively sons
facing life alone without a job.

Just how did this happen
to little old me while
I was busy doing other things.

At age 39, I thought I’d found
true love again and remarried
adding son #4 to my family.
Thirteen years later there I was
now age 52 divorced again
with only one child at home.

Just how did this happen
to little old me while
I was busy doing other things.

Not wasting much time
I immediately found another
loving companion to join my adventures.
We married and set out to live
our future golden years together.
After all our debts were paid,
children raised, and an empty nest
facing us, we looked at each other
and surprisingly said:

Just how did this happen
to little old us while
we were busy doing other things.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Thankful for Teachers

Name three special teachers you have had and how they changed your life:

1. Phyllis Moore-my first ballet teacher that helped me gain confidence in my ability to dance and perform. I went on to dance professionally in the Los Angeles Ballet Company then went to BYU to gain a Masters degree in dance and taught all forms of dance in college for 10 years. I also taught Children's creative dance for several communities.

2. Mr. George Saunders-my high school math-science teacher who praised my abilities. Because of my success in this subject matter, my confidence in my intellectual abilities and self worth increased greatly as I headed off to college to become an engineer.

3. Mr. William Fleener-my high school Senior Seminar-English teacher who made us think and took our advanced class of 24 selected students to visit other nearby colleges in So. California, thus building my desire to gain a college education. He also demanded that we put more effort into our writing essays and term papers. I still remember writing about "All highways are not freeways."

I am thankful for these teachers and others who helped me change my life. I love to teach also and especially help others find their voice in whatever it is they want to do. Tell us about your three special teachers:

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Article #79 Common Courtesy

What’s happened to common courtesy? Has it gone out of style? When I was a young girl, you never called an adult by their first given name, but out of respect you addressed them as Mr. or Mrs. Jones or Miss. Nelson (never Ms. Smith or by their first given name.) I remember the shock I felt the first time that my son’s teenage friend called me Lin. I stopped in my tracks and thought…What did he call me? I felt silly correcting him…Did you mean Mrs. Floyd? Somehow the respect between adults and youth has gotten lost and with it common courtesy. Although, most people today still refer to their teachers and also their doctors properly.

Then, there’s the matter of labeling. Consider this experience I had at my doctor's office recently with one of his assistants. A young girl (twenty something) kept calling me dear. For some reason that always rubs me the wrong way. You wouldn't call someone your own age dear. They would probably wonder what was wrong with you. But this woman called me that several times. Each time I controlled my urge to set her straight. Wanting to tell her that I may look old to her, but I am not 80 yet and won't be ready to be called dear, sweetie, or honey until I have one foot in the grave. Maybe she didn’t know whether to call me Lin or Mrs. Floyd?

Consider also the problem of expressing gratitude when receiving gifts. As a young person, on special occasions I always made a list of any present I received and who sent it. If they lived a distance away, I would write them a note of thanks. Thank you notes are another common courtesy we’ve lost. Emails do count, but there’s something special about the handwritten note and the effort to put it in an envelope, address, stamp and send it off. (Most brides today still do write thank yous.)

Both my grandmothers always remembered my birthday. I could depend on them to send a thoughtful card and some money in the mail. I would be sure to quickly write them a thank you. Now if I don’t remind my grown kids, most of them forget I have a birthday. (Although, I always remember their special occasions with a card and present of some kind.) Times change I know, but sometimes not for the better.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Why Write?

Since I'm doing a blogging class tomorrow for the Heritage Writers Guild that I belong to, it's about time I said more about WRITING. Why do we write?
  • To find our voice
  • To express those experiences that so dear to us
  • To be creative
  • To capture the stories that our mind or the great creator sends us
  • For therapy and clarity
  • To connect with others
  • To sell books-see mine on the top right
There are as many reasons for writing as there are people I believe. So once you decide to write, the important thing is to write freely-don't over analyze your words. Just capture them on paper. Brain storm or cluster what it is that you want to write plus morning pages will get you going. Then choose the idea that draws you to it. Editing and criticizing comes much later. Right now I'm trying to capture histories of my family members and build understanding between them. Writing and sharing it on a blog can do that as you develop an audience and feel appreciated. Tell me of your experiences.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Negative Self Talk

Although it seems to never stop
there's a strange little voice inside
that nags and sometimes
even shouts..."you can't do that."

But I can do it! IF I don't believe I can't,
so how to convince myself I can?
Stop listening to the negative voice,
tune into that other quiet spirit
sometimes inaudible, just a feeling
"with FAITH anything is possible."
I like that feeling and surrender.

"I know better, I am here for a purpose,
I have potential and promises.
Someone knows me better than I do
He is my loving Heavenly Father."
I can ask for His support.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

I Saw a Toad...

today in our front patio and it reminded me of my many poems and thoughts about kissing a frog and finding your Prince Charming. But there is also another side to that story.

The new Disney movie "Princess and the Frog" has a scene where the Princess gives in and kisses the frog so he can turn into a Prince and guess what? She turns into a frog. I laughed and laughed when I saw the preview. Growing up as I did with fairy tales and always wanting to live happily ever after, life was disappointing just like that scene. I needed a divorce in order to escape becoming like my frog. Click here to see the Disney trailer-it is too funny.

But then another frog came along and this one didn't know he was a Prince in disguise. His wife had divorced him and so his self worth was down. He was sure he was a frog but when we met, I sensed something else about him. Although we didn't kiss right away, now after 16 years of marriage I know he really is a Prince in disguise, but he still doesn't know it. Working with him on his life story, has been enlightening for him though challenging to sort out his accomplishments and perceived failures. Oh so, cathartic for both of us.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Shadows and Types

So many of my blogging friends are posting photos of SHADOWS that it certainly gets you interested in LIGHT and the resulting IMAGES that can be made of an object. So how does that relate to LIFE? Could a shadow be like an AURA or PREMONITION that you have about someone without really knowing them? (The problem here is judging without really having all the facts.) Take the situation where you met a new person either online or for the first time. You immediately form an IMPRESSION of the person which is kind of like a shadow-sketchy and not filled in with details. Sometimes it's just a gut feeling which I have learned to trust. Then as you interact with a person over TIME their TRUE personality or character comes out slowly UNLESS they are a skillful actor or deceiver. What you thought or prejudged about them is either PROVEN of CHANGED by your EXPERIENCES with them. This is particularly true with dating or superficial first encounters like meeting new people in a public situation. Also it relates to how you present yourself to others. I tend to be open and honest, although shy and quiet at first. It does take time for me to let others know the REAL ME when I build TRUST with them through interactions over time.

TIME and PERSPECTIVE are the elements needed to prove what someone real persona is. So we are not just concluding from shadows or IMPRESSIONS what that person is like. I can look back at many years of dating and even an earlier marriage where the person I met was very DIFFERENT from what that person was in their core or SPIRIT. We are good at that, putting our best foot forward and HIDING our imperfections which are revealed overtime with pressures. So it takes a certain FAITH in a higher power to make any friendship or relationship and a trust in the goodness of people. How about all the bullies, terrorists, and dishonest individuals in the world? They still have value as individuals with specific needs and wants, but we do need a PROTECTION against their abuses or the ability to take whatever experiences life hands us with acceptance and LEARN the lessons given. What do you think?

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Self Therapy

Writing does many things
it slows us down
puts us in touch with life
the now moment

As we look, think and
consider what is happening
why and how we can learn
from each experience
insights come our way

Reading doesn't do the same
it's too fast and easy
but writing freely
connects words with heart
allows emotions to flow

That's why I blog
to learn more about me

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Veterans Day

Somehow I always equate the word Veterans with WWII and not the Vietnam or Gulf War. But a veteran is anyone who serves our country and puts their own lives at risk whether defending our country or following the orders of his leaders. I've never had any of my four sons serve in the military but I can just imagine the worry and heartbreak that accompany that event. Let us all be thankful today and always for those who serve and protect our FREEDOMS. (Photo of me about age 3, and my uncle Weston who served in the Army in WWII.)

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Self Image

Talking about marketing ourselves, got me thinking of the self image we all have. Considering first of all-AGE. I think we adults all feel younger inside that we appear outside. Gazing in a mirror or window as we pass a store or house, it's interesting how we PERCIEVE ourselves. First of all, I check out my WEIGHT-am I looking any better since I'm loosing weight? In the mirror a SMILE takes years off my face and makes anyone look better.

Then there's HAIRDOS and CLOTHES. I have some apparel that I love to wear and feel great in, then other articles of clothing that sit unworn in my closet. Everytime I try them on, I end up taking them off and putting them back on the hanger. I don't like how they feel or look. Those are items I need to donate to a second hand store, also old shoes that I never wear. We Americans tend to have too much MATERIAL THINGS and could so easily share our access with those in need. We're also too influenced by the skinny youth model standard out there in advertising and magazines.

So our SELF IMAGE is made up of many things-our appearance, our age, our experience with others, our CONFIDENCE, our outlook, health, current stresses, EXPECTATIONS, etc. We can choose HOW we see our life despite any problems or challenges that are in our way. One way to change our viewpoint is not to dwell on our problems but rather COUNT OUR BLESSINGS...write them in a JOURNAL or a BLOG. This is a great month to do that. Also we need to practice UNCONDITIONAL LOVE on ourselves-despite our challenges. God loves us, and we need to love ourselves. Even the scriptures back that up. Love your neighbor as yourself. Make a list in a comment of 10 of your greatest blessings or things you love about yourself and your life. Here's mine:

1. My family-each one of them
2. Faith in God and a church I believe in
3. Writing abilities and opportunities
4. Trust worthy loving husband
5. Living in Utah-my home
6. Opportunities to teach
7. Friends to enrich my life
8 Internet for blogging, education and shopping.
9. Health and opportunities to exercise
10. Ancestors and a heritage

Monday, November 9, 2009

Putting your best foot forward

That's part of marketing too. I had a fun experience at church yesterday. Sat down next to a new couple and we started talking. They are new to our area, moved here from Idaho for the warm winters. We seemed to click and I ended up inviting my new acquaintance and her hubby to accompany us to a archeology club meeting this week. Later I got to thinking how making new friends is like marketing or presenting yourself. You smile, you listen, you ask questions and sometimes you connect.

Another experience last night at dinner our friendly waiter smilingly said "beer or root beer?" I laughed because I live in Utah where there are many non drinkers and root beer is a favorite drink. He was marketing or presenting himself as our helpful waiter and probably hoped to receive a bigger tip for his performance.

Then we went for a walk and I noticed the many desert flowers still in bloom-more marketing for those houses for sale, and for our community which has standards of maintenance to keep our area looking nice. I'm uploading some of the photos taken on our walk and will let you think more about appearances, smiles, dress, manners, behavior, dating, teaching, conversations, politics, etc as marketing. Note the difference in your reactions to the appearance of the daisies and the cactus. Would love your comments...