Friday, January 31, 2014

Sunrise and Promises


How different are sunrises and sunsets.
Mornings––full of promises and possibilities;
evenings––times to celebrate accomplishments.
Life is full of sunrises filled with anticipation,
expectations and dreams to be fulfilled.

Only in sunsets is there time to reflect:
giving thanks for difficult times, finding strength
to endure one more day with heavy burdens.

The cycle continues, renews its promises.
God watches over us with never ending patience.
Another generation eager to view their sunrises
are unaware that sunsets will come too, in time.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

First Dinner Party

We had our first dinner party with our new chandelier. A potluck with friends, I got too busy to take photos of the dinner. It was fun to socialize with others. Think we'll try to do it monthly at least!

Intent serious domino players contemplate their next move!
Everyone had to see the blue boat-it's epoxy with blue pigment in it.
All the ladies love the color, but it will be covered with white paint later. 
Much easier maintenance and care for the boat builder-hubby! Now for the other side.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Article #279 Aunts, Uncles and Favorite Relatives

l-r Vernon kids: Weston, Bonnie & Stan
            When I was 5 years old, my father Stanley was killed in an airplane accident. My grandpa provided a loving example to me as a growing child. Later, a stepfather would join our family when I was 18. Uncles filled the gap in between for my father figure. My favorite uncle was my father’s younger brother Weston who was serving in WWII. When Wes returned from overseas. I clung to him and followed his every footstep starved for attention from a missing father. Through the years as I grew up, I always looked to this uncle to remind me of the father I was missing.
            Aunts always seemed to me like extra mothers whether on my maternal or paternal side. They helped me celebrate my successes, listened to my disappointments and always provided an example of living a good life despite obstacles. My father’s only sister Bonnie started me on the great adventure of gathering my genealogy. Always there to strengthen me with inspirational stories to shore my growing faith, she was like a second mother to me.
Another aunt, my last one still living, is Ethel. At age 94, she’s still going strong and lives at home where she enjoys puttering around in her house, caring for her yard and flowers. She’s endured well the struggles of life and talking with her we always find something to laugh about. This aunt is a link to my grandma. Always making delicious homemade bread, I loved to eat at her kitchen table. Hospitality with a capital H was extended to any visitors.
(r-l) Esther and Grandma J
My aunt Esther was the oldest sister in her family. She wielded quite an influence on everyone. She was the first one to leave the nest in the now deserted ghost town of Silver City near Eureka, Utah. Moving to the big city of Salt Lake to work in the laundry, she set the example of courage to make it on her own and generosity in always sharing some of her merger wages with her mom, a widow with 4 kids at home to support. Esther led the way in many regards for trying new things. After her marriage to Lester, they moved to California for better jobs in the new aircraft industry. California was booming. In time, other family members would follow their example and enjoy the opportunities that a booming California and post WWII economy were developing.
NEXT TIME: More Family Stories.

Sunday, January 26, 2014 I-pad mini

I'm usually about 3 years or more behind in technology but I'm catching up with my new I-pad. Have had one lesson already and two more to go at Simply Mac. After a demonstration at Relief Society-our church women's organization on tablets, etc. as a way to access the scriptures, I was convinced and bought me a new I-pad 3. Of course it's already obsolete, but so am I. Lol!

I love it and the ease of looking up cross referenced scriptures. Mormons use the King James Bible, Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants-revelations given to Joseph Smith our prophet during the re-establishment of the Church, and the Pearl of Great Price-containing the complete book of Moses and Abraham and Joseph Smith's history. It's amazing! They are all available to download or to read by clicking on the links above. I used to carry all these books with me each Sunday to church plus several manuals for Sunday School and Relief Society-now it all fits inside my purse with my I-pad.

Electronic scriptures plus manuals, etc.-what an invention
I finally modernized and now have all my scriptures available on an I-pad 
I can also read books, surf the Internet, do email, etc. Interesting invention.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Another month speeding by...

I don't know about you, but TIME is going warp speed for me with many activities, visitors, classes to teach, meetings to attend, etc. Sometimes I just have to push the STOP BUTTON and say SLOW DOWN, ENJOY THE MOMENT. The joy is in the journey not reaching the destination. Time has a different perspective as you age because you don't know how many days you have left or what health challenges you'll met. Although, I guess you could say that about anyone at any age. I've been noticing more opportunities to help others around me. Whether it's just a smile, a compliment or taking time to visit or give service. It all enriches my life! What's been your experience with the MONTH of JANUARY?

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Article #278 Remembering Grandpa

Before I wrote my own life story, I started to collect stories about my grandparents so their memory wouldn’t be lost to my grandchildren who’ve never met them. The only grandparents they remember are me, and my mother who lived to be 89. Share your grandparents' stories.  I found this old photo I didn't remember having of my grandpa Joseph Harold Vernon (r) and his younger brother Malin.
My grandpa was a great storyteller about the fish or deer that got away or the train derailment that he had to take care of with his job on the railroad. He seemed to always have time for me. My grandpa wore bib overalls with lots of pockets to hold special things like his railroad watch that gave precise time, a trusty pocket knife, a white clean handkerchief––no tissues in those days and some pocket change if needed. Every time we left after a visiting him years later, he always gave me a real silver dollar. I can still picture him in his bib overalls with his suntanned face and large moustache to protect his face from the sun everyday as he labored outside to keep the trains going from LA to SLC. He was a quiet man, full of integrity, humor and love.
A Senior Sampler reader, Donna Shouse of Hurricane, Utah, tells us about her grandparents: When we pull into the gravel driveway, I am in awe of the BIG white house standing so strong and tall on the grassy lot of Rock Hill Drive. There’s Grandma in one of her sweet cotton housedresses with a gingham apron around her waist. Standing next to her is Grandpa decked out in his overalls from his years of working on the railroad system. After the hugs and kisses of welcome, the first thing we must do is explore their lovely kitchen garden at the back of the house. 
I notice that Grandpa has set out the worn little red scooter for us to play with during our visit. Grandpa is a sweet, quiet and gentle soul.  I love climbing into his lap where he bounces me on his knee.  He always has a stick of gum in his shirt pocket to offer me that tastes of cinnamon. In the cool basement he plays solitaire.  Many times we giggle and nod to each other when we catch him cheating. I smell a whiff of the scent of fresh green onion, and know we will soon be enjoying a bowl of wilted lettuce from their garden. Fun memories. NEXT TIME: Aunts, Uncles, and other Favorite Relatives. 

Tell us in a comment about an experience with your grandpa... 

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

What do you see?

We went to dinner the other night at Don Pedro's Mexican Restaurant
 and saw this amazing painting on the wall. 
Check it out then tell us what you saw first...

If you look and see only an elderly man and woman, look closer
there is a young woman with a sombrero on and a young man
playing a guitar for his loved one and other fun details on his ear. 
Click to enlarge.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Cooking Time

Trying to loose some weight and eat healthier in the NEW YEAR

Chicken stir fry with carrots, onions, peppers and green beans-YUMMY!
A favorite beef sausage-hot dogs sliced, zucchini and shredded cabbage with
vinegar and a little splenda, lots of black pepper-it's tasty.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Boat Report

After a long Christmas holiday break, it's time to get back to work...
Mixing up the epoxy for the first coating 
Scraping it on with a wooden tool
Using a brush to spread the epoxy out evenly
Rolling it on turns out to the be the fastest way
A brush helps get the epoxy into the seams 
Half of the boat is done with the first coat, about 3 more coats to do 
It's looking good, will be painted white eventually

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Article #277 More Grandparent Stories

           I’m looking for your ROUGH DRAFT stories (200-300 words) about your grandparents. Send them to me via a comment. I’ll choose a few to publish and give you some editing tips for your use. Tell me if you want your name published with your writing.

A dear friend of mine who is quite the talented writer sent me the following vignette about her grandmother. Notice the details. GLADYS BROWN by Caryn Stott. She was an Irish colleen with a perfectly formed Bottecelli angel’s pouty mouth, periwinkle eyes and thick hair the color of licorice with the shine of a new limousine. She only stood 5’2”, but she could bend the entire universe to her will.  She didn't cause things to happen with force, but with wit, grace, and the gentle ways of women born in the late 1800’s. With an air that would bring a description of “demure” to mind and yet, the word most used to describe her was “saucy,” she was not one to be trodden underfoot. 

When she laughed, it wasn’t the tinkling of a was full of gusto. She had always wished that she had been able, just once, to jump a train and travel like a hobo while she was young. There has never been a pigeonhole that could hold my grandmother. I suppose what I loved about her above all else was that elusiveness.  The fact is she was so multi faceted.  She was in many ways, today’s woman. Independent. Willful. Strong. Yet, she held the mystic, magical quality of yesteryear’s womanhood. Mysterious. Coquettish. So unbelievably soft. Ahhh, to be such a woman.  

            Caryn has a way with words and uses them well to describe her grandmother’s physical, spiritual, and emotional qualities. I can almost picture this woman from this well written vignette or excerpt that pays loving tribute to an important person that was a great influence on her grand daughter.

Hopefully you have someone in your family, no matter their age who can help you capture your family’s legacy in words. Gather their facts and info as well as stories from your youth to write a rough draft. Then, involve others in your family help you put flesh on the bones of your story. Perhaps a grandchild is a talented writer? Do you have a favorite relative that needs their life story written? Let’s have more stories submitted.  NEXT TIME: Remembering Grandpa. 

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

HWG Presentation


Presentation on Memoirs

Besides PRINT, there are other DIGITAL OPTIONS for PUBLISHING

1. An E-BOOK which is just a digital copy of your printed book (i.e. my latest book Discover Your Voice After Divorce) which can be downloaded to a digital reader (Nook, Kindle, I-pad, etc. or to a computer) or attached to an e-mail. Many options for doing this. I used Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing.

2. WEBPAGES-I have all my FAMILY HISTORIES on a webpage that I use from See for possibilities of this type of publishing. Will need specific software (I used Pagemill to set up a webpage) and some expertise. Ask a computerwise family member for help! Check out  the LDS website that is open to all and has options for adding photos and stories of yourself and your ancestors.

3. BLOGS (you are there) which is really just a WEBPAGE but with the option for your readers to COMMENT on what they read. It can be adapted to any topic including your memoirs or just some section of your life. Those who can access or contribute to your blog can be determined by you. Your audience can be the whole world or just limited to family members. See settings for details and there are easy templates to set up a blog.

4. PDF-Portable Document Files can easily be copied to CDs, DVDs or emailed as an attachment when your memoir is finished simply convert your doc file to a pdf. It's quite easy using a print copy or export option in your word processing software. A pdf file saves all your formatting while a document file doesn't. More options info available in my book Find Your Voice: Write Your Life Story  available for $10 with ideas on beginning to write, editing and publishing.

5. I-MOVIES or SLIDE SHOWS with special software can add color, movement and sound possibilities to your memoir. They can be saved to DVDs or uploaded to as I did my Icelandic movie to share with family. Opportunities for adding sound, movie clips, music, etc.

6.  Don't forget FACEBOOK, TWITTER and other SOCIAL MEDIA sites for tidbits of your memoirs or a way to HOOK your audience into wanting to read all of your memoir.

Saturday, January 11, 2014


Caryn loves to teach and does a fantastic job at it, look at her students

Everyone loves to try something new in art journaling-playing with Zentangle!
Showing some new techniques to try engages everyone
Caryn is demonstrating some ideas to try from her own art journal
Everyone can be an artist and explore their creativity, no matter your age
Painting, drawing designs and playing around, it's all great fun
Other activities this week stuffing envelopes for Spring poetry activities

Friday, January 10, 2014

A New Road Opens

We live on Exit 2 of the freeway which goes to the airport and dead ends but will eventually continue to Hurricane via a to be built Southern Parkway-now a new section is finished so we went for a drive.
A new section of the Southern Parkway is finished to Sand Hollow Reservoir
Cut through solid red sandstone, it's a colorful road to drive 
Lots of work and blasting to make this cut for the road to go through
Pine Valley Mountains in the distance and wide open spaces
Gorgeous natural colors make this a beautiful desert area with stark beauty
Virgin River wanders back into the city of St. George
End of the road for  now, but construction is continuing

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Happy #45th Birthday DANIEL

Early years growing up and school times.
Marriage to Tina and raising a family of four children
From the Hallmark birthday card I sent to Daniel:


There's no sweeter mystery than a son.
You hold him, fast asleep in your arms,
and wonder what he's dreaming.

You watch him at play,
his imagination taking him
someplace your can't quite follow...

You see his interests, his tastes,
his talents taking shape
all the while guessing
at what he's thinking.

You look at the man
he's grown up to be
and marvel at how everything
came together
to make him who he is.  

Recent photo in Mexico where the Hatches did a service project

You see in him so much
you always hoped for,
so much you never
could have dreamed...

And it's all a part
of your love for him.

It's all part of why
you're so proud
to have him for a son.


Tuesday, January 7, 2014

You LIGHT UP my life...a shopping trip

An after Christmas shopping spree with BFF Caryn
My current chandelier that I'd like replaced...
It's okay but was selected by the original owners for their decor
Looking for Southwestern designed chandelier, something like this #1
So here are more choices #2-I like the shape of the glass shades on this one
This one #3 has simpler lines and but similar shape shades to #1 
And #4 in the center, simpler lines but shades like #2. Will take hubby to decide.
Favorite part of shopping-lunch at Paula's Mexican Restaurant
Caryn's looking for new furniture for her new home in Ogden
Old lamp coming down, the ceiling is 13 ft high...
Hubby helps with new chandelier going up
The finished project, I like it!