Monday, December 31, 2012


Time to BLOOM where you are planted, despite the circumstances!

1. Keep my well filled
2. Reach out to others
3. Act don't react, etc.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Saturday Afternoon Drive

Goats also, used for milking?
Steers everywhere being fattened up.
Just a lazy afternoon, eat-sleep and try to keep warm. 
No need for watering pastures now
New farm house in Hurricane, Utah in winter.
Lots of calves growing up alone without their moms.
So many warm colors plus blues and purples.
Sand Hollow Reservoir with Pine Valley Mountains.
No boat on this reservoir that holds our drinking water
Lone fisherman on a cold wintry day at Quail Lake

I love the multi-hewed red-pink rocks of southern Utah!

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Letting go...

As I've been journaling and rereading my almost daily writings for the past year. It's amazing. All the experiences and emotions that travel through our lives almost unnoticed. Some feelings we need to LET GO of: anger, rejection, hurt and replace them with love, forgiveness and healing. The wounds inside us sometimes don't receive the attention they should because they aren't bleeding or demanding immediate attention daily. That is, until the pain gets so strong that it disrupts our normal functioning. Then it's time to LET GO, write about the pain-release it, so it doesn't become a toxin within that eats at your soul.

I still carry within me the pain of rejection that happened with my divorce. It continues even today with a family member who hasn't healed. I can't reach this person despite by best efforts, but can only focus on my own reaction. I CHOOSE to LET IT GO!

Maybe a NEW YEAR should be a time of cleaning out all the cobwebs of pain and replacing them with a clean slate to write new memories on, applying healing salve to old wounds to restore health. What are some issues you could take care of? Family relationships seem to be my focus, perhaps because I value them so much! Some are wonderful and others are sad in comparison to what they could be.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Happy 3rd BIRTHDAY Lorien

This is Lorien's birthday #2 collage, now she is three today!

Here is a family Christmas photo her parents sent me. She's growing!

Taken in the fall, she's now in a leg cast but will get it off soon!
Note her cute little brother Edmund who is growing fast too.

Thursday, December 27, 2012


Right now I'm intrigued by art therapy books. Writing is therapeutic 
but so are images and when you combine the two of them....hmmm! 

 Here's a challenge for you to give titles to my Soul Collage cards: 
above #1 family, #2 boat, #3 woman #4 dolls. Write in a comment.
Click to make them larger, made out of magazine collages.

Here a title I gave to (L) Keep looking and (R) Don't give up...
THEN the next step is write a story about one or a poem. Try it!
Here's a collection of titles that almost makes a poem for me:

keep looking
don't give up
the past is over
plans change
find self
bind together with love

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Article #226 New Traditions

What are some of your traditions or cherished family practices that have been passed down through your family for generations? I’m sure you can look back on your childhood and recall how you celebrated special occasions like holidays or weddings or funerals. In the good old days, families lived closer to each other and gathering was easier.

 Now you can have grown adult children living anywhere in the USA or even abroad. Getting together to share any kind of family celebration or holiday is expensive and difficult to arrange given everyone’s busy schedules; not to mention making time for all the in-laws involved and their time with these same families. It’s easier for retired parents or grandparents with good health and no child rearing responsibilities to go visit the kids or some of them.

 We’ve lost many family traditions because of our modern society. It seems that only a major occasion like a family wedding or funeral can bring a whole family together. I remember when my 89-year-old mother died. It had been several years since she had seen or been together with all four of my sons and their families because of the travel distance involved and her poor health, which limited her traveling.

 Perhaps what is needed nowadays is a NEW family tradition. As parents or grand parents age, let’s have a REHEARSAL FUNERAL or an annual FAMILY REUNION where everyone makes a special effort to visit the oldest family member at least on a significant birthday9 say 70-75-80-81-82-83 while they are still alive. That would be an improvement. I have heard numerous relatives at funerals comment on how they wished they’d visited the deceased family member more often. My mom would have been 95 this month, which means I’m getting up there in years also. I tried to get my whole family together for my 70th birthday, but it didn’t happen. Now I’m waiting for my 75th or perhaps I should just go visit them, while I’m still able.

 In our digital world, I know it’s possible to communicate via email or Facebook or Skype. Somehow, it’s not the same as a personal visit where you can look directly into a loved ones eyes and hug them which is so much more satisfying than just typed or written words or texts in emails. Maybe we need a new national holiday called Family Togetherness Day? NEXT TIME: Teaching Moments.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas EVE

Our Sunday School lesson yesterday was entitled BY FAITH ALL THINGS ARE FULFILLED. We started out discussing the meaning of the word "faith." Our teacher is originally from England and brings a different viewpoint because of his background. He taught us that originally in the 1600s the English dictionary's definition of FAITH was "belief in God," but through the ages it has changed to "an irrational belief in an unprovable concept."

Interesting to see how the influence of man's philosophies or life styles have changed such a fundamental word so needed in our society today. A belief that there is a higher power who is in charge and created this universe takes action plus believing on our part. Without that faith, life could seem hopeless. Because you choose to believe in God doesn't mean you are lacking in intelligence but only that you have carefully chosen to have and exercise FAITH in a Higher Power however you identify that individual. History and the Bible do prove that a man named Jesus was born and died. A great teacher, was He also the Promised Messiah as prophesised in the Old Testament and the creator of worlds?

I like Paul's definition in the Old Testament: (Hebrews 11:1) FAITH is the substance of things to be hoped for, the evidence of things that appear not. You can't have FAITH if you have KNOWLEDGE. There is a power and peace that comes with having faith and drawing on the powers of Heaven through prayer for guidance in your life. Happy holidays as you celebrate the birth of the Savior whether you believe in Him or not...

Saturday, December 22, 2012

New Beginnings

No end of the world in sight though prophesied by many
including the Mayans and Warren Jeff of FLDS fame locally.
Only God knows when that will be, but the scriptures tell us
of signs of the times yet to come including evil deeds about,
natural disasters and men's hearts-faith failing them. It's time
to celebrate the truths we hold dear to be true that Christ will
come again and there is purpose to life and our time here.
Merry Christmas to all, remember WHY we celebrate the season.

Friday, December 21, 2012


Well, it's time to UPDATE my cell phone because I got a new digital camera last year with a fantastic zoom 35x (my old camera died), but it's too big to carry in my purse. One thing always calls for another and I wanted to update my old cell phone which has a very poor camera in it that won't download photos to my computer. I've also been very unhappy with the coverage T-Mobile gives me and knew it was time for a new cell phone from ANOTHER company with a better camera for my Christmas present! 
While out shopping with my friend Caryn we stopped by VERIZON and talked to the sales guy there. He was friendly and oh so helpful. He asked me if I was over 65 years old-what a COMPLIMENT! Told me I only looked 61 or 62-I told him...remember compliments can get you anywhere especially when you are 72! I got a NEW Samsung Intensity III and a Senior monthly coverage all while keeping my same telephone number and lowering my monthly rates. It has a pushout keyboard which I'll enjoy although I don't have text coverage-that's an extra $10/month plus Internet coverage-that's an extra $30/month. For $30/month basic I have 200 minutes plus 500 weekend and night minutes. With my old cell phone I had 300 minutes for $35/month. Since I mainly use my phone for emergencies and long distance calls, it will serve me well. I'm not ready to be hooked to the Internet 24/7 wherever I am, but perhaps that day will come...I also have a land line for local calls.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

It snowed here!

Our first snow of the winter on the mountains only
No snow on streets or cars to shovel off-just perfect
But it's cold outside, perfect weather for Christmas...

Wednesday, December 19, 2012


What is it that makes a FRIEND? Someone who is interested genuinely in you and willing to listen, share and is honest. I've had several close friends throughout the years. Some I haven't heard from for years as distance separates us. It does take EFFORT and TIME to build a friendship that is reciprocal. Some individuals don't make good friends as they are TAKERS that can drain your energies and not givers that listen and give ENCOURAGEMENT. A good friend is a real TREASURE! To be a friend to others takes effort, love and sometimes PATIENCE. So fun to have Caryn around to do things together this winter...

Monday, December 17, 2012

Lamantation in poetry...

The World Today
Violence, terrorists even among our own;
jealousy, anger and bullies exists in families.
Satan rages in the hearts of many while others
saddened, ponder in their hearts how to stop it.
Reaching out to love those closest helps,
turns our thoughts from negative to positive.
Free agency demands expression, but protection
of self and loved ones responds with prayer
and trust in the Father of us all who weeps. 

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Family VISIT

Checking out Grandpa's boat building project in the garage.
A USA puzzle provided instruction and fun to do together
for the brothers Nathan and James.
Time to make original Christmas cards for family members.
Emilee helps Grandma with salad making for family dinner.
A visit to St. George's LDS Temple to see the lights.
A nativity scene outside creates a Christmas mood.
Warming up inside the temple Visitor's Center

Christmas tree decorations in the Visitor's Center
Book of Mormons now available in 107 different languages.
Eating Sunday breakfast together before church starts.
Good looking family with happy Grandma to have visitors

Friday, December 14, 2012

Soul Collage® Class

I signed up for an interesting class at the AHA!-Artful Healing Academy
that just opened up in town with directors: Cindy Cox and Pat Major.
I always enjoy new ideas and participating in creative art activities.
Here are some Soul Collage® cards we made at a workshop with Pat.
(Click to make images taken from magazines larger.)

The cards are about 5 inches by 8 inches in size, made of cardstock.
I found myself drawn to words as well as images that I organized
and pasted together after cutting or tearing. After making the cards
we discussed why we selected the images we did and made 

lists of words that appealed to us as viewed our own images.
Then we looked at other participants cards and added words
to their list of words which opened up new ideas for me.
I can use these cards or this idea for writing/poetry prompts.

The ideas of these cards can be used in therapy or self help
sessions to expand awareness of emotions and ideas that
float around in our subconscious mind and heart. It's quite
a New-Age type process with the cards that I don't understand
yet or believe in, but I enjoyed the hands on art experience.

An interesting activity that my friend Caryn and I are exploring
together. The first five cards I made in Saturday's class and the last 
five cards were made on Wednesday while looking through
old magazines and just generally relaxing/talking at my place.

Do these cards open up any ideas to you for writing?

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Happy 30th Birthday JEFFREY

It's been quite a year for my youngest son Jeffrey as he turns the ripe old age of 30! He graduated with an MBA from Thunderbird International College in Phoenix, Arizona in April, was hired by an investment firm in SLC, then his wife Rachel gave birth to their second child a son Edmund in June! It's been a good year for Jeff and family. Congrats and Happy Birthday...I remember when I turned 30-it was a long long time ago!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Safety Glasses

Watching my husband work carefully with his power equipment as he is building his boat gave me to some ideas about safety glasses. Maybe we all need some or at least the concept of protecting ourselves and being aware of danger in any situation that we might find ourselves in. 

I'm amazed each time I drive at all the close calls from drivers who aren't in the NOW moment driving safely, but are instead talking on the phone or texting or thinking of something else. As you get older, it's so important to watch where you are walking as a slip off a curb can cause a twisted ankle or worse and never jump on a trampoline.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Article #225 Personal Battles

            During a recent family holiday gathering, I was thrilled to have so many of my immediate family members together: six of my seven grandchildren, two of my four sons and their wives. It was not an easy to arrange with so many schedules involved. We solved the problem of the nearby in-laws who also wanted their family together for the holiday by combining families––the more the merrier. I get along well with all my daughter-in-law’s parents. We are near the same age and have much in common.

            Amid the chaos of so many cousins and siblings playing and moving about, it was possible to visit one on one with most of my family members. However just at dinnertime, tragedy struck when one of the youngest grandchildren, only three years old, was injured jumping on the trampoline outside with her six year old cousin. Her cries immediately brought everything to a stop. Her mom, a nurse, checked out the leg that the child couldn’t put any weight on.  The immediate thought was a hairline fracture of the femur, which proved to be true later. This was almost stopped our holiday dinner in its tracks, until an in-law grandparent suggested that the child lay down and watch a video while the rest of us ate dinner before making the trip to the ER.

            Our celebration ended after dinner when the parents of the injured child left for x-rays. This sweet grandchild’s femur did have a hairline fracture which will necessitate this lively little girl to curtail her activities for many weeks. She is too young for crutches and too heavy to be carried everywhere with a cast on her leg. What a sad development for an otherwise joyous holiday gathering of feasting and visiting.

            Mishaps, accidents and opposition are personal battles to be expected in life even though we try to avoid them. As a parent or grandparent you don’t want your loved ones to have to ever experience pain or discomfort. You would gladly carry their burdens on your own shoulders, but it can’t be done. We, each of us, will have our share of challenges to work through as we assume the responsibilities of parenting and try to protect our family from disappointment, worry or pain. We can rally together to give support, love and prayers as a family as trials come into our individual lives. NEXT TIME: New Traditions

People pleasing and the word NO!

Well, it happened again as I almost took on the RESCUER role
after a phone call from an individual who wanted editing help
with his biography and I had been recommended. How can you
say "no" after that introduction? I would be rejecting two people:
the person who recommended me and the person needing help.
I've always tried to keep everyone happy even at my own expense. 
You think after SURVIVING two demanding marriages and divorces,
I should have learned, but I'm still a work in progress. Smile...

Finally after lots of thought, prayer and inner voices arguing inside,
REASON prevailed and I decided to say "No." The requester was quite
polite and accepted my decision well. I'm happy and realize again
how difficult it is to keep priorities in mind and my life in BALANCE!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Article #224 Affirmations and Compliments

            I have a hard time with self-help books or classes that want you to make affirmations or state a goal you wish to achieve as already happening. Example:  I'm a success at losing weight. Repeating this positive phrase is suppose to help you believe that you can accomplish it. What I find lacking in affirmations is honesty or a plan. I can’t affirm that I’m thinner, unless I am. Affirmations only add to the confusing self-talk (both positive and negative) that can go on inside your head or mind. We are all good at self-criticizing. Maybe it's time to substitute true positive compliments to yourself instead of fake positive statements. (Although, if affirmations work for you, don’t let me stop you.)

            Here’s some examples of self-talk from my life:
             1. BOOKS: I could say as an affirmation: I am successful at selling my books or Negative self talk: well, you've certainly failed at trying to sell your own self published books or I could compliment my efforts: I have to say you have really tried to sell your books and YOU HAVE WRITTEN FOUR OF THEM! plus helped other friends to self publish their own. Compliments or positive self talk build and encourage you rather than tear you down, while affirmation can lead to more disappointments.
            2. RELATIONSHIPS: Affirmation: I will motivate my extended family to gather for the holidays or Negative self talk: Well for all your efforts, the rewards have been few in trying to get your whole family together for a reunion versus a compliment for my efforts: You had a wonderful time with those family members who were able to come and celebrate the new baby's blessing. Keep trying.
            3. SELF IMAGE and WEIGHT LOSS: Affirmation: I feel good with all the weight I’m losing or Negative self talk: You've gained back most of the weight you lost in the past few years and struggle with your eating habits versus complimenting my efforts: You are trying again to loose weight and exercise more––good for you.

            I hope you get the idea. We each need to be our own best CHEERLEADER. Although it helps to have friends, family or spouse who do that also. The only person we can control is OURSELVES!!! Focus on eliminating affirmation-type and negative self-talk by adding a compliment or two to restore HOPE to your life. What are some COMPLIMENTS you need to give yourself? Write them in your journal now. NEXT TIME-Personal Battles.