Holding my "before" favorite shirt after losing 125 pounds on my journey to better health.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

The Flowers speak to me

Beautiful Almond trees that bloom in our town every spring.  They have to be over a hundred years old.                   

As I am out walking I see many beautiful flowers that speak to me.  They remind me of times past and how I came to love the flowers. Today I spotted these Poppy's growing in a weed patch. They are all so beautiful but reminded me of a poppy garden I use to see blooming when I was a child.  My Grandma Elmer had a plot of ground between her home and my Uncle Rex's home in Payson, Utah.  Each year we would go over to see the beautiful bright red Poppies bloom.  They would bob and weave in the breeze and you could see inside the jet black center.  It was such a sight to behold.  One year we did not go to the Poppy garden.  When we did go to see Grandma the Poppies were mowed down and the land tilled up.  We could not believe what we were seeing.  Who had done this horrible thing to Grandma's garden.  My dad explained to us that the Poppies were Opium Poppies  and that the government had made Grandma destroy them because of the narcotic in them. Of course I  could not understand that and have not thought about it for many years. (probably half a century)   I then got thinking about who I thought about when I saw certain flowers.  I though about my mom as I saw a beautiful yellow rose and remembered how she loved the ones along Grandma Warner's fence.  Mom tried each year to start one from a cutting in her yard and never could. When I lived in West Jordan she brought a start  to my new house and that rose grew.....She was always so proud that I had a yellow climbing rose bush in my yard. Oh, the Iris!!!!!  Many a trip we went on around town and even to Mapleton to see a special color of Iris that was blooming.  I can't smell an Iris today without thinking of my Grandpa Johnny's back yard. The quest to grow a "Wabash" or "white" or a "coffee colored" Iris. My Dad always said he loved the Daffodil  because it told him spring was here.  My sister Elaine had to do a tribute about a rose one year when she was a young woman I think her rose was called a Peace Rose.  I don't remember for sure but when I see the colored roses I think of her.  I have always love the lilac bushes. My Grandpa Johnny had many along the side of his house and I think of him and my mom but I also now think of my sister Joan.  Joan gave me a book about the lilac which contained a wonderful message that when you see it bloom you know those in Heaven are with you. She gave me and our other two sisters this book after she found that she was finishing her battle with Breast Cancer. I have a lilac bush in my back yard that blooms multiple time through out the summer and even into the late fall.  I think of her when I see those blooms. My oldest sister Marilyn had a side yard full of three foot tall stalks with a large purple bloom  on the top. I don't remember their name but she sure comes to mind when I see plants that are on tall stalks like those.  Onion, garlic, etc.. She has moved from that home and I am not sure if they still bloom there.  When I see a Giant Joshua (cactus)  I think of my brother Kevin..(hehe) When we were little our parents took us to California to see the cousins.  We stopped by the side of the road to take a picture of those huge cactus. As we were backing up to get a good picture one got my brother right in the head. Cactus spikes like to stay with you so he had a pretty painful trip for a few days with that spike in his head.
    I have put a picture of the Old Almond tree on the top of this blog.  It is one of the sights I look for each year.  I begin checking when we have the first signs of spring and when they are in full bloom I sit under them and take in the sight and smell.  There are several trees along there that were part of an old pioneer orchard.  The tree trunks are gnarled and black. The blooms come out in that pale pink and seem to almost smother those trees.  I have taken so many people over to see "my" trees.  My Mom and Dad when they were alive. My Aunt Leora.  My Mother-in-law.  My husband has to go with me every year.  I have taken several friends.  I use to take my kids every year. Now I just send them a message that the tree in blooming. I don't know what stories my family will remember when they get old (like me) but I hope they are mixed in with a few beautiful flowers.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Two Bits

I had a friend named Bev that I use to go visit with once or twice a month. Bev was a rough, tough, opinionated, feisty gal. She had come from a hard background but you could feel the inner strength she had gained surviving through her hard life.  She was one of those women who would go out hunting and fishing but also take care of the gutting and later the butchering on her kitchen table.  She started having small strokes that eventually caused her to be bedridden then pass away several years ago.  As I was sitting in her funeral her husband told a story about her.  Bev was a prankster and loved a good laugh.  For many years she had been pulling a prank on many in our neighborhood and we didn't know it.(that was the biggest part of the fun for her.) Bev decided that she was going to glue a Two Bit on the sidewalk in front of her house and watch people try to get it up.  She knew that a penny would not tempt to many but a Two Bit!!! Wow.  She spent many years laughing as she watched others try to pick that up. She would on occasion go out and even shine it up a little so it sparkled in the sun.  Her children and then her grandchildren watched with her and laughed at the neighbors as they dug at that money. I had to admit I was one of the many who picked at it and rubbed my shoe on it to see if I could get it free. I had forgotten about that story until I walked by her house today and glanced down to see if it was still there. It is gone but the fun memory of Bev's Two Bits will linger in my mind for a long time. (for those of you who do not know what a Two bit is ask an old me.)

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

My Twin

I have been told through the years that I had a "twin" in town.  I wondered about this as I know there are people who look a lot like other people. People would tell me that they had seen me here or there and I had never been to here or there. During those years I did not go out much and usually never alone. I just didn't feel good enough to go out and shop or do the other things they would claim they saw me doing. I ran into my twin one day in Walmart and yes, I could see that we did look alike.  About the same size and hair style. Same hair coloring and movements. Close to the same age. From the back my husband thought she was me. Another time he passed her in the post office and was amazed at how much alike we looked.   I haven't seen my twin for a few years.  I really haven't even thought about her.  The other day I was out for my walk and I passed my twin.  She was on a motorized scooter and was struggling to get off it.  She had oxygen on and seemed very weak.  She still had the same hair style I use to have (tight curly perm) and wearing the same style of clothing I use to wear. Sweat pants and 3X mens T-shirts. She was even wearing the same type of sunglasses I like. Big and white.  My twin was struggling to do the normal tasks of life and I was walking 11 miles.  I don't say this to brag. I looked at my twin and in my heart I felt such love and compassion for her. I wanted to hug her and say, "I was you." I wanted to encourage her to begin that first step to reclaim the health she has left. To fight with every fiber in her body to improve her life. I didn't stop to talk to her.  Sometimes I have felt that I have offended others when I speak to them and say, "good job at the gym today or glad to see you out walking on this beautiful day." They don't know me and don't know that I DO KNOW how they feel and I am giving them true encouragement and not mocking them.  My twin was a reminder to me that I need to continue working on my health. It will be a forever process for me. I know if I don't I have all those diseases lingering in my body that can come back. I will watch for my twin when I am out and about. I might just stop and visit with her for a moment. I will ask her if she was ever told that she had a "twin" in town.  Maybe then I can give her the encouragement and hope that I know she needs.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Cleaning Grandma's House

Has been a while since I have written on here. Just needed a little break I guess. This post is going to be a little different. Maybe some of you will think I'm weird but I will just say, "join the crowd, I know I am a little weird." This post is about my daughter and something that she has been experiencing for many years. 
        My daughter moved to Provo, Utah many years ago to attend college. She lived about 15 miles from my Mother.  I am not sure how often this would happen but Emily would go over to see my Mother and help her around the house.  They spent many hours going through photos and working on other stuff.  I am sure Emily would dust and clean as that was an honored job that my Niece Bonnie use to come and do before she moved from the area. They would help with the Christmas tree and assorted odd jobs that Grandmas love their granddaughters to do... It was a special time for them. My Mother remarried and moved from her home into her new husbands home. Emily moved and the cleaning stopped.  The house was sold many years ago. My Mother has passed. This is where it gets interesting.  My daughter when she is going through troubling times begins to dream about cleaning my Mother's house and not able to get it done.  She has called me many times and asked me," What is Grandma trying to tell me?" We have talked about many different ideas and always come to the conclusion that Grandma knew she was struggling with decisions and wants her  to take care of herself. This has gone on for years.  My daughter has gone through some very tough times. She and her son D survived a horrific car crash that the responding officers told us they should not have survived from. She has a strength that I can only wish I had. She does continue to struggle with many issues in her life. (we all do)  So she has been having the dream again.   She knows that Grandma is sending her a message, but what?  This past few weeks she has been pondering a lot of changes in her life. Health, employment, and family situations.  She has been able to make some final decisions  that she thinks will help her in all these areas. She said that she had the dream again last night.   As usual she was doing all the tasks like before but this time she finished cleaning and locked the door!!!!!!  I think Grandma is satisfied with  her choices and with her final cleaning.