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Sunday, June 18, 2017

A special gift

Last night I got a special gift from my youngest grandson that he had purchased for me on his trip up the West coast with his mom and stepfather. I was impressed that he had only been home for about 10 minutes when he walked up to my house to present my gift. He said he had looked in several stores before he found exactly what he was looking for.

He couldn't have known how much I would treasure his effort.

Although Seattle is not my hometown it has left many once in a lifetime memories. I lived there from the time I was in 6th grade until I was 28 years old. I graduated from Roosevelt High School, had my first real jobs as a clerk for Rhodes Department Store and as a file clerk for the Teamsters Health and Welfare Union, met and married my first husband and gave birth to my two sons in Seattle.

I remember going over the bridge from one end of town to the other and all that water in Puget Sound. I remember the whale called Shamu, the Seafare celebrations every summer, complete with the hydroplane races. I also remember the 1962 World's Fair, held in downtown Seattle and of course, the space needle. I still have not ever taken the trip up its side, but my grandson said he did. He also ate in the restaurant at the top and watched his food spin around.

There are a lot of memories packed into my years of living and working in Seattle and I am happy that my young grandson has had a chance to make his own. I am also very happy with the special gift he brought me. Thank you Colin for your thoughtfulness!

Monday, June 12, 2017

Responsible for what?

My grandson is on vacation with his family but before he left he called and asked me for a favor.

He said he had ordered a pair of shoes that were a once in a lifetime deal. "Really Grandma I will never get this kind of deal again", he said. "These shoes were made by a very important person and they were marked way down."

I laughed and told him I had never paid that much for a pair of shoes in my life. Oh to be young and have your own spending money!

He knew when the package would be delivered, but there was a problem. He was going to be on vacation so he asked if he could use my address for the delivery. Of course, I said yes.

Today is the day. Since I know how much he paid for the package I don't want to go anywhere until it arrives. I am not sure if it is coming UPS of FedEx but kids are out of school now and it could be stolen if it is left on my front porch.

So today I am patiently waiting for my grandson's very important delivery. After all I agreed to be responsible.

Thursday, June 8, 2017


For the last few weeks I have been doing everything possible to improve my current physical challenges. I refuse to allow my body to be taken over by age. Although regular exercises and changes in diet have made an improvement I am getting impatient to see the results I expect.

Patience is a skill I have had a problem with my entire life. It is no doubt a side effect of wanting to control things. I'm sure I'm not the only one dealing with acquiring this skill. Today I decided I would research the word patience and see what others had to say on the subject.

Patience is not the ability to wait but the ability to keep a good attitude while waiting. 

Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience.

Sometimes things are not clear right away. That's where you need to be patient and see where things lead.

The key to everything is patience. You get the chicken by hatching the egg, not by smashing it.

Patience is waiting. Not passively waiting, that is laziness. But to keep going when the going is hard and slow- that is patience.

Patience can't be acquired overnight. It is just like building a muscle. Every day you need to work on it.

It takes patience to listen...It takes skill to pretend you are actually listening.

It has been said good things come to those who wait. All I have to say is whatever is coming had better be freaking fantastic!  

It appears that I am not the only one after all. I guess I will just have to keep plugging along and hope patience will eventually catch up to me.

Sunday, June 4, 2017


Even though I have searched on for relatives there are some questions I will probably never get answers to. It bugs me because there is nobody left who can give me the answers I am seeking. Perhaps the secrets of the past are supposed to remain secrets.

I found out as a teenager that my mother had been married before she married my father. According to my grandmother she was too immature to be a wife. That could have been a prejudiced opinion. That marriage does not show up on any records that I have found and I want to know the man's name and when they were married. I have no clue why I just do. He could have been my father.

The second question involves my maternal grandmother and her first husband, who died when my mother was a child. I found the mention of the fact on that they had a son in addition to my mother. There is no mention of a name for the child, which I find rather odd. My natural curiosity wants to know- what the heck? Why doesn't the child have a name? Was it stillborn? Was it given away for adoption? Was my biological grandfather even the father? Apparently I will never know the answer to those questions and it bugs me. That child was my maternal uncle.

It reminds me of an experience when my daughter was young. We were looking through some pictures and found one of my first wedding. Oops! I had not mentioned that I had been married before or that her brothers were half brothers. I wasn't intending to hide anything. It just never came up. The boys were 18 and 13 when she was born. Another interesting fact to this paragraph is that my first husband had also been married before and had a daughter, who would be a half sister to our two sons. I have no idea who she is, where she is or what her name is now. All I know is that her mother's maiden name was Wheeler and she lived in Seattle, Washington..

I guess stuff happens that gets buried if nobody asks questions. The intention is not always to hide the facts, but the facts are still important and can cause anxiety to future generations.

Perhaps the lesson is keep asking questions before it is too late.

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Family is family

It doesn't matter if family members are still living or not they are still family. Today I sent a copy of a family tree to my oldest granddaughter. She is probably oldest by a few minutes because she is a twin. She also, in my opinion, has the most common sense so perhaps she will care and pass on the information. Maybe, maybe not.

She and her two siblings seem to forget that there are two sides to every family. Their mother's side is predominately Native American and that seems to be all they care about. There are three more nationalities on their father's side; French, Scottish, Swedish and English.

It took me several years to go back on and get everything on my side of the family in order as far back as I could. I didn't even know the names of my biological grandfathers who both died before I was born. It is very sad that people just don't seem to care about the past anymore. The only paternal grandfather my granddaughter knew was a step grandfather and he recently died. Her biological paternal grandfather, Warren S. Smith, died in 2008 and she probably doesn't even know his name

Whether the 54 people from my family tree, going back to the 1800s, are alive or dead they are still family members and deserve to be remembered. At some point my great grandchildren, will be looking for this information. I just made it easier for them. It's the least I could do for their future.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

A brand new month

Looking back at May I see my calendar was all marked up with appointments for various physical problems. I am glad that's over and I can began this month with a new schedule.

My foot problem (gout) has passed and my foot doctor, my PA and I have all agreed to take a wait and see attitude. We are waiting to see if my body decides to do it again. If it does the first step is to eliminate the water pill I have been taking for years to control my blood pressure. Everyone agrees that could be what is causing a build up of uric acid. The attack was not likely due to food, although I have given more thought to my diet and added yogurt, more fruits and vegetables and water. I have also included vitamin B12 and C supplements to help things  move in the right direction. Oh and I discovered the frozen stuff I was having for lunch was loaded with hidden sodium, which of course was what was increasing my blood pressure.When I stopped eating them it went down.

I was due to finish my month of physical therapy for my rotator cuff problem, but my therapist and I have decided to add a month of once a week therapy. Although I do the exercises at home I feel I need that little extra push to spend more time on them. My therapist and I do feel that all I really need is regular exercise. Again we will see, but I am looking forward to positive results. I have been told that at my age surgery is not an option. That's good because I didn't want that option anyway!

Deciding that any appointments with my chiropractor were going to just have to wait, whether she agreed or not, I reached the conclusion that it was counter productive. After discussing it with two physical therapists I was convinced that it is my body and my decision.

For the most part I have a great team of people doing their best to keep me healthy. I love it when everyone agrees and we are all on the same path. I am looking forward to a brand new month with a lot fewer physical appointments and problems. Following suggestions and  keeping positive thoughts are going to be my contribution to a great outcome. 

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Speaking of trails

 Interesting how life seems to leave a trail and whether we notice it or not it's there.

I just finished a book titled, Alone Again,. I didn't like it, but it reminded me of an e-book I have listed on Amazon titled Spirits of Cibola County. It also reminded me that I am a very good writer. The book I just read began with no preface and was a collection of short stories that didn't seem to have any connection. The last story was supposed to be the author's life. He explained he had found a book that inspired him to write a similar one. He simply copied the format. Interesting, but no cigar!

My book on the other hand came from my own mind and a curiosity about my neighbors. I know that each story has a tiny thread that leads to the next one. All I had to do was follow the thread and my own intuition. Many of the 64 stories first appeared in columns I wrote for the Cibola Beacon, with the last few added to help get it up to date. It begins with a brief history of Cibola County, New Mexico to give readers an idea of the area.

The stories also led to a sister blog to this one in 2014 called Cibola Images. It was meant to promote my adopted home town and the people who live here. I shared a few of the stories combined with pictures and tidbits of things that were happening. After awhile I noticed it didn't get much response so I let it sit and sit.

About the same time that I finished reading, Alone Again, I shuffled my Doreen Virtue Angel Cards and drew Entrepreneur. At first I thought, "Oh come on what does that have to do with anything?" The first part of the card read:Self employment suits your disposition and intentions. Working for yourself allows you to better follow your intuition and Divine guidance

Well alright I'll buy that!

I immediately remembered my vow to not write for the Beacon again. I like writing my blog because I do not have an editor screwing up the points I know I am supposed to make. As an example one of the things that always bothered me in writing a newspaper column is the fact that women are referred to by their last name i.e. Gunn. In the first place I was born with a last name of Halverson, Gunn was just borrowed. Why don't men get it? In my opinion it is disrespectful.

I'm not really sure what I am going to do with the sister blog, but there is a real possibility that I will try to pick up that thread again. A lot of changes have taken place in the area since I stopped writing in 2014 and I only used a tiny portion of the life stories I had at my fingertips. I have written permission from the subjects to promote them in any way I choose to use them.

Often the trail continues when something you don't like pushes you to move forward. I have found that happens a lot when negative people appear out of nowhere. They are only roadblocks giving us a little time to refocus.