Saturday, October 26, 2013

Family Matters

January 16, 1973

Dear Perry and Gene,

We have been wondering how Linda's baby is. We hope it is gaining and improving in health.

You wanted to know about Mother writing a life story. Shortly after they moved into 1190 Elgin Avenue, they went to Richfield and stayed a few weeks. Hope and June wrote and typed what they told to them. Hope had it printed and she said she thought you and all your children got one of them. However, if you didn't, she has one for you, so let her know.

Sunshine Ranch grove of trees where Elmer prayed for a son
Also Mother wrote a short history when Grant 4th Ward was publishing a few life stories. I believe I have a copy of it which I'll send if you want it. I can have it xeroxed so let me know. That is all I know about. Last summer I wrote down a few things she told me about her parents and grandparents. I can also send those too. They're just short pages of things as she told them. If you want those, I'll be glad to get them in shape.

I've never written so many letters before as I have these last few months trying to get the Goodrichs organized. It's a slow uphill battle. The indifference and procrastination of the people is something indeed. And you know me, how I like to have things move if I am responsible. I'll send two sheets showing some plans and a little progress.

Walter and I had a real good trip at Christmas time. David, Barbie and Michael met us in Norfolk. We spent Christmas Day with them. The next day he took us to Jamestown and Williamsburg. It was wonderful to see and hear the beginnings of our nation. Williamsburg has been restored as it was before the Revolution. We really felt the spirit of the great ones such as Patrick Henry and Thomas Jefferson.

The next day we spent a very interesting time in Washington D.C. Then David and family went back home and we went on to Milwaukee. One of Walter's friends took us to see Lee Roberts, our cousin. He used to live in Roosevelt, son of Elmer Roberts. He's a very good carpenter and seems quite properous. He is very interested in the Goodrich family. He also gave me a book about Duchesne County which was put out by Mildred Dillman. He showed me where my picture was in it as a teacher, and I didn't know it. His parents were divorced and his mother has been completely crippled for over 20 years. It was quite refreshing to find someone so family conscious and so concerned. Perhaps the tragedy in his own family made him realize the importance of love and unity.

The whole trip was wonderful and it seemed incredible that we could go across the country so fast. Mostly we were flying above the clouds, but sometimes we could see through to mountain, rivers, plains, or city lights.

I read the book you sent to Dad and Mother and it was delightful. I have a nice history of Grandma Goodrich's brother George Henry Taggart. It cost $7.00, but if you want one, I imagine Scott Taggart has some more. Love, Hazel and Walter

Family gathering in Claremont, CA, August 1973
February 11, 1973

Dear Mother and Dad,

It has been quite some time since I wrote to you. I do hope all is well with you still. We are having a lot of rain now so I suppose you are getting more snow and you already had more than enough.

The other night I got out those life stories that you told to Hope while you were visiting with her in Richfield. They were surely interesting and some of them brought back many memories. Of course it made me appreciate you too even more intensely. It is surely good to read about our ancestors and what they did to make the way for us. I became particularly interested in that when Hazel sent me a copy of the Goodrich stories. I was so impressed that I gave all of the children copies for Christmas. We also included some stories Gene has collected on the Fasts. I wish I could get more on the Manwarings. I do recall reading a brief autobiography of Herbert Manwaring. Is that all we have?

We expect to come up for spring vacation again--April 15-21. However, Gene may come up with Linda, Eric and children March 19th. They surely want their children to meet Grandma and Grandpa Manwaring.

We are all well except for minor bouts with flu. It doesn't seem minor when you're having it, but now that we are recovered, we can see loftier things to think about. I hope we can hear from you soon. Love, Perry

March 5, 1974

Dear Perry,

As I look out, I see a foot of new snow and a huge snowman across the street and little children playing in the snow. Do you remember telling us once how Linda and Marian (a long time ago) hurried and gathered the snow from a neighbor's car which had come from a higher elevation and carried to your own yard to make a small snowman? This has been quite a storm, and you folks should have had some of it. But the sun is shining now and the day is nice.

That was quite an experience for all of you when Linda's baby was born, and we hope all is well now, and we were so glad to hear that the little boy's heart is perfectly normal now. Your father is quite pleased with the name. You spoke of your descendants. You know it seemed for awhile that the name "Manwaring" might die out as far as we were concerned. Your father was feeling a little left out because we had five girls and no boys.

Grandma Manwaring was down to our place, and she said "Well, doesn't your patriarchal blessing say you will have a posterity that will hear your name in honor? Your girls will hear some other name." Then after that, you were born. So now Dale and Jan will carry on the name.

Jan and his girlfriend were here some time ago and invited us to be present, if we can, to their forthcoming marriage in the Provo Temple in July, I believe. (Dad says Salt Lake Temple.) I have had quite a time with nose bleeds. I hardly dare to clear my throat. Dr. Davis didn't do anything for me--said my nose had been cauterized several times and to do some other things, etc. etc. such as keep a pan of water boiling on the stove to keep moisture in the room and of course, "don't irritate my nose."

Hazel comes and does things and takes our laundry. Our washer wore out, but I could still do a lot of it by hand. Hazel thinks the young generation is a selfish lot. Anyway "her school children are."

Next day: Well, the world is still white. The roads are clear though, and we are feeling ok. We have had quite a wind. Hazel said it was taking the shingles off from their house. She says the wind has more force at their location where it comes down those mountain slopes.

Grant came down several days ago to see his doctor and took me to the grocery store. He is not feeling very well. Well, I had better get this in the mail. Love, Dad and Mother

P.S. Did you read in the paper of the death of John Goodrich, my brother? Ruth and Arvil came here and told us about the funeral.

Perry's sister, Venice and husband, Arizona Temple
for the wedding of Venice and Alvin's son, Dale
August 29, 1973

Dear Mother,

Just a birthday wish. We surely hope you have a happy day. I suppose Venice told you we went to Mesa for the marriage and reception of Dale [Bascom]. It was a very pleasant trip and visit. Jan enjoyed it too.

We just said goodbye to Jan, Renee and Harriet this morning for BYU. It's rather quiet here now, especially since Marian with her three have gone to stay for a couple of days with a friend. She is here while Warren is finishing up his military assignment and getting them relocated in Ukiah, California. (That is an area somewhat near Sacrament.) He has graduated now and has a job there. We are surely glad for them.

We had a combined birthday party at our home for Harriet, Dale and Tina Hartman. It was pleasant. If you had been here, we could have included you. This was the first time we have had all of our children together in three years. Best of wishes. We surely love you. Perry

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Jan Returns & Baby Jesse is Born

Jan's home from his mission to Bolivia
September 21, 1972

Dear Perry & all,

Writing to you has been on my mind for some time, but I get side-tracked too often. Yesterday we went with Hazel and Walter and Hope to Provo where they held the Goodrich Reunion. It was a good spot in the park, and there we found Renee and Harriet and Marian and children. We had a very good visit with the girls.

I should tell you about my birthday cake. One Saturday they came from Provo and brought a gingerbread house all decorated with white icing, like melting snow, all dripping down the eves and colored dot candies marking the window, doorway and chimney. It was so beautiful and funny, I had to go and call the neighbors in. Part of it is still in existence. I hated to dismantle it, but Floyd and his family called on us, and I had to pick off some of the most inconspicuous candies for the children.

Yesterday at the park, a Brother Johnson who is the husband of Venna Goodrich, and is president of the Granger Stake talked to us--Pa and me--about what a fine man Alan Mangum is. Alan is a bishop and teaches school. He told us that Alan is such a worker and a very good school teacher and a good bishop. I told him that Alan had a good wife too who was able to help him.

I hope we get to see Jan when he gets back. Renee says she thinks he can't get off here in Salt Lake City. Venice's boy, Kent, goes soon on a mission to a Japanese location. Kent has really done things to make his family proud of him. He has saved his own money for this mission, and he was wanted as manager of a Safeway store out there. He sang a good song yesterday at the program.

Well, I will close for now.

Later: So many things come along to take my time and attention. It is still good weather. Has anyone told you about Grant? He had his operation for "chest hernia." He has had quite a time, but Hope told us yesterday he is feeling better. He went to Richfield recently to sell his home there. Everything, he said, was in such bad condition he phoned to Hope for her and Nelson to come and help. They repainted and cleaned everything and finally sold it.

They are planning on buying the old Williams home in Spanish Fork. Nelson doesn't seem to get anyone for a wife yet. He seems content to go along with once in awhile a date with someone. He told us this recently about going to the wedding reception of one of his old "flames." the mother of the bride, when Nelson came along to offer congratulations, threw her arms around Nelson's neck, broke down and cried. She had always favored Nelson, but her daughter was unpredictable and was always playing games. I wish Nelson could find some good, dependable person.

Hazel was voted in as president of the Goodrich Association, much to her dismay. She has so many things already to do and teaches school too.

Uncle Jan brought Cherylen & Laura ponchos from Bolivia
Well, I have told most of the important news items I believe. We hire two neighbor boys to cut and carry away the grass, and they should come today. We told them not to come Saturday as we would be gone. Tell Dale and family hello, and Linda and hers. Thank Linda for the pictures, and I plan to write before I get many years older. It would be good to see them all. I can't quit thinking of Marian's little girl who when she was here was so full of life, and at the reunion the other day was sitting by her mother--just a perfect little lady.

I will close hoping to hear from you again--not too long in the future and hoping we will get to see Jan. Love and best wishes to all, Mother and Dad

October 4, 1972

Dear Mother and Dad,

It seems that my handwriting is getting worse and worse so I try to type as much as I can. It was surely nice to get your nice letter. I had just been thinking how long it had been since I had heard from you. then when we got the letter, it was a nice surprise.

It is so wonderful to have Jan home with us for a little while. We have surely been doing a lot of talking. We stay up and talk and talk. Of course he has a lot of film slides to show us too, so we have been getting filled in on his two years absence gradually.

He surely wants to see you. He is flying up to Provo with some friends this Friday the 6th. He wants to attend a missionary reunion there that night. He will spend some time with his sisters in Provo, but of course he plans to come up and see you before school starts so you can plan to be seeing him soon.

I have a different job this year. I am supervising all of the reading specialists in the school district. I find it quite exciting up to the present. I am trying to bring a number of new and innovative ideas and have a number of people quite interested in them. Hazel will probably be interested in this. I really hope I can bring them off the way I have planned.

With conference coming up this next week we will especially be thinking of you because we know where you folks will be. We wish we could drop in and see you. How are all of you up there? I haven't heard from Hope or June for quite awhile. I surely hope you, Mother, and Dad can keep well this winter. I surely hope you will write us and let us know how you are. Love, Perry

November 24, 1972

Dear Perry & all,

We were so glad to get your letter telling of your plans for the holiday, so I will tell you what we did. Floyd asked us out there. Lorin was there too. Sharon had a real feast cooked, and we brought some of it home with us for today. They had a real nice turkey with dressing, plus a chicken. So they sent the chicken home with us, plus a pumpkin pie with whipped cream. Floyd has finally got his home finished and furnished. Lorin seems to be doing well.

Hope asked us up there, but we had already promised Floyd. She had June, and Hazel and Walter. Grant has been having a real bad time with an infected ear. He has had to get a doctor's help. Kerry Dee and wife came to see us. They have a nice little girl, and they all seem happy. Lorin seemed well and happy. He has been in Colorado all summer with Gene and family. His children surprised him by fixing up his house during the summer for his return. They even put pretty carpeting on the floor. All in all, we had a real good day and we are both well. Love, Mother & Dad

Jesse at birth
December 4, 1972

Dear Mother & Dad,

It was good to hear from you and to know that you had such a nice Thanksgiving. Last Wednesday Linda gave birth to a baby boy--Jesse Manwaring Hartman. Everything seemed to be just perfect. Linda didn't require any anesthetic and no stitches. The baby seemed to be in excellent condition. Then the next day he began gasping for breath and breathing rapidly.

At first they thought it was a lung infection. Then they discovered it was a heart defect. He has been under oxygen ever since then and is under constant observation. They will be taking some tests within the next few days to determine if they should go in for surgery or not. If they can get it to correct itself enough, they may wait and operate when he is about six or so.

Needless to say, this is all been quite sad for us. We would certainly appreciate your prayers in his behalf and in behalf of Linda and Eric. He has been placed in special care in a hospital in Pasadena and Linda travels out there twice a day just to hold and feed the baby. She certainly shows beautiful strength and courage and so does Eric. Eric was really looking forward for this baby and was really hoping it would be another boy.

I know it would mean a great deal to them if you could drop them a few lines. I am sure you would know what to say. Meanwhile we are fasting and praying as are the others in Provo. That is all we can do right now, but we can do that and although it is the most we can do, it may not be a small thing. "The prayers of a righteous man availeth much," as the scriptures say.

Other than this, we are all well, and we are looking for the return of all of our family for Christmas. But they all had a good time together at Marian's on Thanksgiving. Please call the others in Salt Lake and let them know about little Jesse. Love, Perry

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Babies Scott Manwaring and Christopher Bodily are Born

Dale & Carolyn's little boy, Scott, born February 9, 1972
February 12, 1972

Dear Perry & folks,

The book came yesterday ok, and I wanted to sit down and read it all over again. My artwork in the back is still there!

The ground is still bare and the sun is shining. Everybody is well as usual. We saw Renee a few weeks ago. She looks well and happy. The mail has come early, so this letter will not get sent today.

Later: We were glad to hear about Dale and family and the new one who will perpetuate the name.  Give Dale our best wishes. We were glad to get letters from Linda and Marian too. It surely would be good to see all of them. Dad said, "Didn't it sound good to hear Perry's voice?"

We are anxiously waiting for your article in the Era. [Perry published an article in the Church magazine about the process of learning to read titled, "Black Marks Your Eye Can Pick Off the Page"]

June is having quite a time with bursitis in her shoulder and typing all day at the office doesn't help it. Well, did I tell you that I won a prize for being the oldest woman with the most grandchildren at the stake party? The prize was a little book on "How to Keep Well."

Well it is about mail time, so I will seal this and get it sent. Love to all, Mother

May 11, 1972

Dear Mother & Dad,

I guess it's appropriate that Mother's Day and Dad's birthday come on the same day. I can remember several times of this happening. We surely hope you are both feeling well for the occasion.

We are all well here. thanks for the birthday card you sent me. Also, I think I failed to thank you before for the book by Thoreau that you sent me for Christmas. We surely had a nice visit with you when we were there. Happy "Days" to both of you. Love, Perry

July 13, 1972

Dear Gene and family,

I'm sending Harriet and Renee a small gift. I'd hoped to get something for them before I left, but we left earlier from Pat's and didn't get a chance to do it. How is your mother doing? I hated so bad to leave so soon, but I felt like I just had to on Art's account. I went to Disneyland and to the ocean on Wednesday and Saturday.

Marian with baby Christopher born June 22, 1972,
Sacramento, CA.  Cherylen holds up her brother, David
while cousin Laura takes care of her Bear-Bear
We enjoyed every minute of the time I was with you all and would have liked to have stayed longer. Seemed like you homes were so far away from each other. I thought before I left home that I could get on a bus and go any place I wanted to, but no bus system in New Hall connects us to each town. But we enjoyed everyone so much. You were good, and Perry too, and Pierce to take care of us. I loved you all for it. You have such a nice family. I wish I could have seen Marian and her family. But maybe again sometime before I get too aged and crippled up.

Poor sister Leora. She just couldn't understand it all, but I was glad to see her once again. I haven't been down to see Leola but will as soon as I can get rested up. I didn't tell her I was going to see Leora for she'd been like your mother--she'd have wanted to have gone along and would have worried about it. She is doing fine they say, and I'm so glad about it.

Your Uncle Arthur gets very forgetful anymore but not too bad. He still drives down town and out to the boy's home in the country. He's going on 84 years. It's awful to get old especially not being able to walk very long or be on one's legs. But some others are worse off then we are so we should be thankful that we can get around as well as we do.

Gene, don't forget your promise to visit us now. We'll be waiting for that day to come. It's been a long
Charlotte & Scott
time since you've been with us hasn't it? Thank you so much for your hospitality and your driving us around. It was so nice of you. Pierce and Mona too were so kind and good to us. We enjoyed everyone so very much--even Linda's in-laws--she was so nice. Give my love to your mother and god bless everyone of you and your family. They were so nice and those dear grandchildren--don't we love our grandchildren.

Well, must close and get to bed. Love from Aunt Minnie and Uncle Arthur

August 27, 1972

Dear Mother,

It seems like a long time since we have written each other, doesn't it? But I surely haven't forgotten you. In fact just now I looked at the clock and saw that I had an hour before church. As I thought about what could be the most useful thing I could do in that time, I was struck with the thought that I should write a letter to you and Dad. Then I quickly realized that your birthday was coming this week.

We are going over to Dale's and Carol's after lunch for a birthday supper with Dale. Do you remember how he wanted to celebrate his birthday with you when he was little? I think he would like to again. He has been trying to figure out a way to get up there. He would surely like you to meet his little Charlotte and Scott. But now he has the full responsibility of a family and so I guess it has to be postponed for another summer. He wants to get back into school and had to register on the 30th, which interfered with his planned vacation time.

Renee and Harriet are leaving tomorrow to return to BYU. I hope they will be able to get up to see you sometime this fall. Marian and Warren are already there. Jan will be home in just 3 weeks. It's like looking toward Christmas as a child.

How are you and Dad feeling? It would surely be nice to see you but it doesn't look likely this summer. We'll have to let our children carry our greetings. But for now it's Happy Birthday! Love, Perry

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Letters between Perry and his Mother

Harriet & Renee
August 12, 1971

Dear Perry,

With a common lead pencil I will attempt a letter. It seems I cannot keep track of my good pen. Gene, we are glad you send us a card once in a while. It helps a lot.

We hope we can get to see Harriet while she is out here. I figured she would get very lonesome for Renee. And the birthdays in August! Nelson has had his then there is Dale, Harriet and I. Give Dale and Harriet our birthday greetings!

It is warm today, and I suppose the heat will increase. We have an air conditioner in our house here in the kitchen window. It helps a lot. The last two weeks has been given to house, yard, garage and basement cleaning. When Hazel starts anything, she does a thorough job of it, and I mean thorough! All of my objections amounted to exactly nothing. But it all looks nice, and I will try and keep it better. Hope bought paint and helped with the west bedroom. Hope came for awhile. She is scheduled for another scout campout for Grant and has to cook and prepare. Meanwhile, she will stay with June while Grant is gone.

Dad and I went to the temple yesterday with our neighbor. The temple was closed during July, so it was crowded yesterday, and we were both tired today.

You know Kizerians came from the old world, and Mormons had a hard time of it there and it was hazardous to try to flee to the U.S. But Sister Kizerian told it all to a worker who worked on our ward chapel several years ago, and he put it all together in a drama, and it has been staged in several cities--Salt Lake for one. It was put on in our stake quite some time ago, and it was good and interesting. I think Brother Kizerian must have told you how their people were persecuted by the Turks, didn't he?

David and Barbara came Sunday to show the baby and visit. He is really a sweet child, and I think he will look like David. Maybe I can get this in the mail yet. The mailman came and brought such nice letters from all of you--Jan and Renee. My! That was wonderful that Renee got first place in her English class composition. All our love, Mother & Dad

"A hot August day in LA" 1971
September 3, 1971

Dear Mother,

It was surely good to talk to you this morning. It was good to hear your voice--it still sounds just as good as it always did even when I was a child; although, I suppose you are not feeling real comfortable with your arm up in a cast. I'm glad you like the flowers. Even though they were a day late for your birthday, I guess it was quite appropriate that they were there when you got home from the doctor.

Gene and I just got back from Sacramento Monday. We were up there Friday through Sunday night to visit Marian, Warren and family. They are surely a wonderful couple and have a very happy home. They like Northern California, their house and their ward. And everyone in the ward really likes them too. So it was very pleasant to see them in such happy circumstances.

I am going to send you a copy of Jan's last letter. We are surely happy with his service. I think you will enjoy this last letter. The other children are all well and happy too so we feel very blessed. Renee and Harriet are up at MIA Girls' Camp this week so Gene and I are here alone with her mother. The girls always like camp.

Soon we will all be back in school again. Then it will be the full rush schedule 5:00 am to 8:30 pm. Gene and I have quite enjoyed this summer even though we haven't taken any long trips. We have taken a few little short ones close around here.

We bought us a new little car--really little--a Datsun. With most of the family gone, it should serve our needs quite well. On the trip to Sacramento we got 39.6 miles per gallon! Can you believe it? Of course we kept it right on 60 mph all the way as it wasn't completely broken in yet. Coming back we traveled 65 to 70 and still got 38 miles per gallon.

Linda and Eric are blessing their boy John Leslie this Sunday. Dale, Brother Hartman and I will all stand in. I guess we'll have them all here for dinner. It will be partly Dale's birthday dinner since we didn't get over for his birthday. Well, please be careful so that you don't take any more falls. Love, Perry & all

September 22, 1971

Dear Mother and Dad,

I guess I shouldn't expect to get a letter from you, Mother, with a broken right arm and Dad with his poor vision, but I have been wondering how you are. Perhaps you can persuade some of the other members of the family up there to write me and keep me informed. But I suppose you are both ok or I would have heard.

I suppose you are getting some nice autumn weather up there now. This is a nice time of the year in Utah. It is nice here too, but not quite so dramatic as up there with leaves changing color and all. Last week we had a real searing heatwave. It got up to 115 in Pomona. But now it has passed and I imagine old summer's back is broken now.

I thought I was going to get to come up and see you a couple of weeks ago. A man in our ward has his own plane and he was going to fly up. He invited Renee and me to go with him, but then it fell through when he was unable to get some repairs on his plane in time. But I, or we may get a chance to come up some time or else we are going to fly you down here. I hope you are still considering the latter possibility.

We surely do get good letters from Jan. We are so pleased and proud of him and the good work he is doing. But we are pleased with all of our children. They are all on the right track and working hard to stay there. Did we tell you that Renee had straight A's for all of her work at BYU last summer?

We are surely glad that Renee and Harriet got to visit with you last summer. They told us all about it, and it was almost like visiting there ourselves. Harriet has quite a way of telling things which made it particularly enjoyable. She said that Gene and I got to go up there and visit last year while they stayed home, so now it was their turn, and I guess that's right.

When we were visiting up in Sacramento, a young man came up to me and said he remembered me and especially you two from out in Roosevelt. He was Robert Stolla. I'm sure you remember the Stolla family. He surely did speak highly of you and said to give his greetings. He was also in our Pomona Ward a number of years back.

Well, I'm sure I don't have to remind you to be careful. Dad, you take care of Mother, and Mother you take care of Dad. Love, Perry

November 29, 1971

Dear Perry and All,

Thanksgiving has come and gone, and now we look forward to winter and Christmas. We had a very enjoyable Thanksgiving Day. Norma and Alan asked us out there with all of the Mangums. Sharon was not there. She was in the hospital with another new boy. That makes three boys and three girls. The last one will be named Douglas Robert. Norma had us bring home a supply of the dinner, so we had plenty for the next day.

June was surely pleased with your telephone call. She said, "Perry calls me every Thanksgiving." Yesterday Gene, Carma and family called on us. They were on their way home, and Lorin is going back with them to stay awhile. He has retired now from his job, so he can travel and visit if he wants to. Gene lives in Loveland, Colorado. Thanksgiving time has so many wonderful foods. Just try to imagine anyone going hungry. Yet I suppose somewhere in the world, someone is hungry.

My broken arm is doing very well. It hurts in the wrist when I bend it. The report called it a "shattered arm". I am glad my nose wasn't broken too as they at first thought. So many times you have said, "Now Dad and Mother, try not to have any falls."

We got a good letter from Jan yesterday. If I answer all of his questions, it will take a little while. He certainly has a wonderful spirit. We would certainly like to see all the family members. When I look at their pictures, I have to smile with pleasure.

I haven't seen the mailman. (He is just going down, so he will be back real soon.) So I will get this in an envelope. Love to all. It would be good to see all of you. Mother & Dad

December 2, 1971
Perry hosting one of many Thanksgiving dinners

Dear Mother & Dad

It was good to hear from you and to know that you had such a good Thanksgiving day. I am glad that you have such fine thoughtful grandchildren. I thought of having you down here, but I guess that is impossible since Dad refuses to fly. I still think you should do it though. We would surely love to have you for Christmas.

We had a houseful for Thanksgiving. Renee flew down with a member of our ward. He flew up to get his daughter who is at the "Y" too. We also had Linda, Eric and family, Dale, Carol and family. Later Pierce and family came over. It was a beautiful day and the afternoon the children all went outside and played games. Then toward evening as it began to get cool we put a nice big log in the fireplace and then they all came inside.

Then Friday night Dick and two of his children (actually one of his children and the Indian boy who is staying with them) came in from Utah. They stayed until Monday morning. All in all it was very nice. Now we have Christmas to look forward to. Marian and Warren are coming down then. They spent Thanksgiving with the Bodily's in Idaho, so they are spending Christmas with us.

Mother, I am surely glad that your arm is healing ok. I surely pray that you will not have another accident. Now winter is here you will really have to be careful of the slippery steps. I wonder if you shouldn't keep a little bucket of sand handy.

I am glad that you have Hope and Grant so close that they can give you close help. Also Hazel, Walter and grandchildren are all there for help and comfort too. Of course we have Gene's mother here so we can help her. But I'm afraid she doesn't appreciate our help. She so wants to be independent. She keeps saying how she wants to go back to Los Angeles and have a little apartment of her own. Yet we know she isn't able to do that and so it seems like we are keeping her here almost against her will. Of course if she could be on her own, that is what we would want for her, but we know she can't so we keep her here and help her the best way we can, which is in the ways she can't help herself.

Of course that is really the whole plan of salvation--doing for others what they cannot do for themselves. So after you have done what you can for yourself, don't hesitate to let others become Christ-like by helping you.

We surely do get wonderful letters from Jan, and I am glad to hear that he has written you. We are certainly grateful for the lives that all of our children are living right at this point and pray that it will continue and even improve. Linda and Eric are both active in the ward here. Linda is an excellent Sunday School teacher and Eric is active in the priesthood and is a home teaching supervisor. Marian and Warren are very active in their ward in Sacramento and they have so many good friends. Warren is a counselor in MIA, a Sunday School teacher and a seminary teacher. Marian is Junior Sunday School chorister and Primary teacher.

Dale and Carol are active in their ward and are doing a real good work with the youth. Dale is the explorer leader and has explorers in activity the like of which is beyond memory of anyone in the ward. Of course much of it is because of his interest in mountain climbing, so they have a mountaineering post. They have a lot of activity, go places and do things which is what young people like. Carol is an excellent wife and mother. (And mother again in just a few weeks.) She has also been the girls camp director in the ward.

Renee has really a remarkable scholastic record. She went up to the "Y" with a near straight "A" average and so far she is holding it in college. Besides that, she has a wonderful disposition (much like yours, Mother) and a sweet spirit which everybody loves.

Harriet is really a delight. She is so much fun to have around (albeit she thinks it is a gross injustice to be the last and be left alone with two "old people.") But I don't know what we would have done if we had stopped having children before we got Harriet. But Harriet often feels that she stands in the shadow of Renee because of Renee's scholastic record (although she actually isn't very far behind) and because Renee is so sweet. I told her once that she and Renee are like a bottle of 7-Up. Renee is the sugar and she is the "kick." But Harriet is really quite a leader and organizer. She was in charge of the Girl Life program in our stake this past year and it is really amazing how she could organize and get people to do things.

I guess this is really a thanksgiving letter. Thanksgiving originated as a thanks for the harvest. Well, this is my harvest.

Renee & Harriet with the "living" Christmas tree
December 6 - This started out as a Thanksgiving letter and it looks as though it's going to end as a Christmas letter. That is one thing I usually try to do--get a letter written to my parents and sisters for Christmas. It makes me think of when we used to each make something for each other for Christmas. I'm a little far away for that now, but I do still try to make a few meaningful marks for the family. So here it is "writ' by hand."

It's beginning to seem like Christmas and Christmas makes one think of home. I surely hope the season will be a happy one for you. Much love and best of wishes, Perry