Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Marian will soon graduate

Marian graduates, June 1966
January 28, 1966

Dear Mother,

So glad you got moved ok. We wanted to help you but you were anxious to move before we could make any arrangements to help. Glad you have such good friends in the church. I'm so thankful for all our friends in the church too. We feel as close to some of them as we do to some of our own loved ones I think, but how wonderful it is that we as brothers and sisters in the church can have such understanding for one another. It makes this old world a much better place to live in for we need the encouragement and love and understanding of those around us.

I was asked by one of the bishopric several weeks ago to give the children's story in Sacrament meeting. Perry suggested a short story which I had read and was familiar with. It isn't a church story but has a genealogy theme running thru it. I practiced it over and over and sketched pictures to go along with it. But I was so nervous and apprehensive about it all when my turn came to give it. I just can't relax ever while standing behind the pulpit.

Well, before I finished telling the story, my mouth went completely dry. You perhaps have had this experience too. Well, I could hardly talk but somehow managed to get thru it! Well, I received many compliments on it. It seems the adults enjoyed it as much as the children did. Yesterday I received a lovely letter from the bishop. I will send it to you to read too. I really appreciated it, so please return it. I feel like framing it--ha!

Then I volunteered to assist at the "open house" week of our new stake chapel which is completed now and ready for dedication. Since I teach in Sunday School, I was asked to serve as a representative of the Sunday School and introduce people to the new Junior Sunday School room and classrooms and explain our procedures there to groups of people and friends and investigators who attended the open house. (Hundreds of people went thru the building last week.)

I had to have that "little talk" memorized too, so I could give it within a given time and skillfully. Wow! It put me on my toes, but I know all of this is good for me. I shall gain better poise and get so I can talk to people with more self-confidence.

I work for the PTA by serving on a telephone committee for the senior class activities this year (last year too) since I have a child graduating this year so had a lot of people to call this week and discuss things with. That and Relief Society and visiting teaching to accomplish plus the family chasing has kept me on the go this month and now the month is gone!

I am so anxious to see your new abode. Hope we can come in next weekend. We will be having Stake Conference this weekend in our new stake building! You will too, I suppose. Your conference seems to always be same date as ours. Do hope you are well and rested up from your move.

Perry has changed jobs in his school work. He has been transferred to another school and will be a specialized teacher helping problem children learn to read. It's a new program in the Pomona district being subsidized by the government. This job will be more challenging and interesting and a change from the regular teaching schedule he has had for so many years. His book is still in the hands of the publishers, so we wait anxiously to hear from them too.

The children have all just finished a half-semester of school and finished their grueling exams this week so will enjoy a few days of letup and relax a bit while the teachers get their grades worked out. They are all in better spirits around here now and acting a little more human (poor things.) Linda surprised me Wednesday when I got home from Relief Society. She had the house all straightened up and a lot of ironing done, dishes done too, and beds changed--wow! I was so pleased. She said it was a pleasure to do it after so much studying and pressures at school--ha!

Well, so it goes. Linda really had a happy day on her birthday too, I think. She received a tape recording of her boyfriend's voice (very interesting) and a beautiful bouquet of daisies and daffodils from his parents (the bishop and his wife.) We gave her a box of chocolates.

We received Eric [Fast's] announcement of his West German Mission call. Guess you did too. My isn't he handsome! I wrote to him and sent a small contribution. We are all very proud and happy for him. Must close and get this off to you now. Hope you get it tomorrow. Love from us all, Gene

Gene, Leora and Perry
April 16, 1966

Dear Gene and all,

It was so nice to hear from you. That was a joyful surprise. But I am sorry to hear about your mother. But Gene, I noticed when I was out there the last time that she was failing a lot. Well, we are all bound to go thru this old age it seems. I have been going down now for the past 3 years. A year or two ago I was sick practically all year. Then this past year I have doctored constantly. First my stomach and then my spine. I have a hiatal hernia of stomach and if I'm not careful of my eating it bothers me quite a lot. Then when I began getting better then Arthur got sick and lost so much weight. He looked like a skeleton and I worried so much over him and when he began to improve a little then I had to hurt my spine and had to go to bed with it for I couldn't walk or hardly get in and out of bed for 6 weeks. Had to use a cane to hold my weight off my spine.

As long as I lay in bed, my back was okay. It still isn't well yet and every time I ride a short distance I'm in bed or down next day, but it is getting better. I thought I'd be in a wheel chair for a long while. I didn't get to go to Katy's oldest girl's wedding the 26th of February. Everyone else went to it. I have to hire a girl to do my housework one day a week. But maybe when summer gets here it will get okay. I guess I injured the vertebras or discs. I thought I'd broken my back.

Gene, I wish I was close to you so I could be with your mother once in a while. It is quite a problem when one gets old and forgetful and still wants to take care of themselves. Because we're always afraid they might get burned, fall or injure themselves in some way. It's hard to make them realize they can't be alone and yet they think they're capable and strong. Your mother has always been so independent and capable and always wanted to wait on herself and everyone else. It's going to be awfully hard on her.

You know, Gene, I never did believe in taking tranquilizers. I think they're dangerous to one's self. But doctors still try to push them on their patients. I have Leola in another nursing home now and she isn't taking any medicine at all. She had a nervous spell about a week or two after I moved her when I got sick and the lady had to give her two tranquilizers to calm her, but after two days she quit on them when she got calm and she hasn't given her anything.

The lady is so good to her. She says Leola is very good. But she likes to be quiet and sit and watch other people. Talking makes her nervous so Mrs. Goodwin just lets her alone. She takes such good care of her and Leola likes her. She doesn't do anything, only sleep, dress, eat and sit in her room. Seems happy though. Answers you when Mrs. talks to her. So I feel she is doing fine.

The other place where she was they didn't care for her. Let her hair go and didn't bathe her or cut her nails (toes and fingers.) She as in a terrible shape while there. It took me about an hour to try to comb her hair out (knots) and finally had to cut it off. That woman was supposed to give her sheltered care and keep her clean and from body odor. Some of these places aren't fit for a dog to go to. It's pitiful. I go down to see her often and she always is clean and nice. That is sure a relief. You know Gene they pay for these helpless people very good wages and they should do their duty.

I wish your mother could have come out here when she wasn't so old and I could have taken her around. Now I'm pretty helpless myself but have hopes of being better. But my age is against me for a quick recovery. Arthur has given up farming and I'm so glad. The boys are farming the ground where we lived. No one in the house. It's about to fall to pieces. Can you remember how it used to look? We still have some old furniture in it. I've sold my cabinets and electric stove. Hope I can get a little out of the other things, but it wouldn't be much. Might as well give it away.

Family vacation while we're all still together
The weather here has been chilly for this time of year. Just last week we still had snowflakes. Every time our flowers think about blooming they get frost bitten, poor things. My tulips are late. I can't hardly get Arthur settled. He just thinks he should be out farming and he's too old and not able.

Gee, I wish I could come see you all again. We had such a lovely time when we were there. All we do anymore is spend money on doctor bills and medicine it seems. Arthur wants to live on his social security and he worries for fear he can't. And I don't think this medicare will benefit us older people at all. Sometimes we wish we hadn't signed up for it. Anytime the government gives you anything you pay for it dearly.

Well Gene, I must close and thank you so much for your letters. I was so glad to hear from you. Please keep me in contact with how your mother is because I'm so anxious. I thought maybe we could be together and maybe see Ed and Bryan but now I guess it will never be. Arthur won't ride on an airplane. He's scared to pieces of a plane.

Well hope your family is okay and Pierce's too. Give my regards to them and let me hear about them also Richard's too. Wish some of you would come see us sometime. Loyd's next oldest girl will be married in June. She graduates also in June and has a school near Chicago. No great-grandchildren yet although will have 3 granddaughters married. Gene take care of yourself and God bless you all and your mother. I think of her so much. Love, Aunt Minnie

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