Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Remembering Carrie Crockett

I received an email today from Jeannie Bassett who wrote the music and I wrote the words to our musical composition "The Lives That They Lived" that  was chosen to be printed in a special  ISDUP song book last summer.  Jeannie wrote:  "The ISDUP sent us a letter requesting some 'background information, inspiration or motivation behind the lyrics/music, or a family relative for which the song was composed. For this, we need your help in writing such a description about your song in the collection.' They want to include a written background for the contest songs so when it is used in a DUP Camp Lesson, there will be a handy description of the history of the song. Cool, huh?"

In response, I wrote the following to Jeannie:

I wrote my original poem for Paul's grandmother Carrie Hansen Crockett (May 25, 1889 - March 9, 1980) who lived in Idaho her entire life.  She slowly wasted away before death finally took her.  Being so aware that this tiny frail lady was living her last, I began to remember the stories that she had told us of her life.  The thought came and I was quite sure that she would want us to remember her when she was active and healthy and strong.  Who wants to be remembered as being frail and helpless?  As she approached her last hours on earth, the words to a poem began to form in my mind and I decided to write them down.  

Carrie was not a member of the church but she was a pioneer in her own right.  She used to tell us stories. She was about 5 feet tall but was very proud of the fact that though shortest on the girls' basketball team, she was the "jumping center" at the Albion Normal School.  She said her team mates on her basketball team gave her credit for causing the San Francisco earthquake in 1906 because it happened when she came down with a rebound.  Carrie told us of how the neighbors depended greatly on one another during their hard times and how much they looked forward to getting together to dance and have a good time whenever they could. In fact she met her husband, George Crockett, at one of those dances.  After their marriage, she told us  of sitting on the back of a wagon counting turns of the wheel marking the miles helping her husband who was a land surveyor.  She worked along side of her husband and family to homestead acreage up Rock Creek Canyon a few miles from Twin Falls.  George died accidentally when their family of three boys and one girl were still young.  Carrie continued to live on the ranch and kept it going and reared her family into very industrious men and women who provided her with much joy and pride.  

When the ISDUP song contest was announced, somehow that poem written 33 years before came to mind and I leaned over to Jeannie Bassett and said "if I provide the words for a song, will you write the music?"  She said she would be delighted.  Working together and thinking of the LDS pioneers and their struggles, we adapted the words of the original poem to emphasize the gospel and faith in God.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Letters from Bryce

We write to Bryce each week and he writes back.  His letters are short and sweet but he is happy and successful.

February 3 he wrote:
I'm in New Port and we just had another baptism and it was really great this week has been fun because I got transferred and I get to go to the Portland Temple and we have family's that we are teaching on a regular basis. the apartment I am in has a pool table in it.  Keep up the hard work and the work is fun.

February 10 he wrote: 
We play pool every p day and we are teaching a family regularly. It is so much better here than in Grants Pass because people are much nicer here and I did my very first door approach yesterday and it went really well.

February 17 he wrote:
...this week we had another baptism it was good and then we went out to eat with the family and it was really good food. I had clam strips and they were good. How are things going there? This week seemed to go by really fast and the days are jumbling together like its one big day.... In case you are wondering I'm eating really well and no need to worry on that part. 

February 22 we received these photos from Jeff and Janette with a note.
 A member in Bryce's mission sent us the picture of their family with Bryce and his companions--one is from Woodland, Utah and the other is from California they seem really nice.  Bryce shared that hamburger it's bigger then he is the  other picture is one of his baptisms.

Jeff and Janette also mentioned they went for a ride up Monte Cristo and saw seven moose.  

Friday, February 21, 2014

The Hair Style of Today!

With every one of our children when they were tiny and didn't know what was happening, I would comb their hair into a peak running down the center of their head.  This was just how babies' hair was combed "way back when."  I learned to do it from my Mom.  When I visited my new born grandchildren and combed their hair with a peak running down the center of their head, their Mom usually doesn't let "my" style of combing their hair stay very long.

Sooooooooooooo I was delighted to see that "my" style of hair combing has finally caught on!

This little boy had his hair combed in the same way
but I didn't get a good shot of him.

Our BIG Find at our local HEB!

Texas shaped corn chips!

Taking Care of the Temple Grounds

Maintenance at the Tampico Temple includes trimming the palm trees though he had to climb about 60 feet to get the job done.

The shrubs are easier to maintain and are beautiful at this time of year.  

Friday, February 14, 2014

The Arts and the end

We had a "to do" list of things friends had suggested that we do while in Mexico City.  We had two more places to go and today was our last day there.  On our list was to go to the Belles Artes building and probably was the intent to attend a performance of the performing arts but we didn't have time.  It was a beautiful building and there was an art exhibit of one man whose art work and whose spider was out front but from the posters shown, we opted not to go see his exhibit. 

A very large spider!

This is a photo of a photo of the stage inside the Belles Arte building.  
We walked through another wooded Plaza Alameda park on this Valentines day.  A few youth had signs that they would give "brazos" for free today.

The Potted Potter was playing at a local theater and we read online that:
 "The Unauthorized Harry Experience – A Parody by Dan and Jeff
 takes on the ultimate challenge of condensing all seven Harry Potter books (and a real life game of Quidditch) into seventy hilarious minutes. "  

Museo Nacional de Arte

We took the time to enter the very large building filled with art work of Mexico.  We noticed the many people working were in coats and scarfs and realized afterwards that the signs said the temperature in the building was intentionally left cool to protect the art.  No wonder it felt so cold inside!  Below are several works of art from the different sections.  

Can't remember the artist's name but we were always drawn to his works.

Religious Art showing an act of great charity.  

We thought these next three pictures of the local life were fun.

Again we didn't record the names of the artists but thought their works were religious masterpieces.  

Paul in Noah's arc

Abraham and Issac

Then it was time to pack, board the bus and head back to Tampico.

Xochomilco - "place of flowers"

From Sherryl's journal:  14 February 2014:
"We finally made it to Xochomilco and weren’t sure where we were headed so some helpful men with Xochomilco embarcacion tags headed us down a street and as it turned out—not surprisingly—to where they had an interest in the boats.  The arch said Belem and looked official.  I was more interested in a bathroom stop and they were more interested in dickering a price.  Finally they directed me to a bathroom and for 4 pesos we were given some toilet paper neatly folded which is nice but whose hands had folded it?  Paul and the men talked money and Paul and I began to walk away.  They had a chart showing all we would see and a price on the wall of 350 per person per hour and it was a lot higher than what the internet said we would pay.  Paul offered 400 for us both for 1 hour and walked away.  They stopped us and accepted our offer.

"Many brightly colored flat boats were floating side by side and lined the river as far as we could see.  How they knew which one to use remains a mystery but we walked over three to one that could make it out of the mess.  A young man with a 15 foot pole that touched the bottom of the canal or river maneuvered us out of their boat parking lot and that took up several minutes of our hour long trip.  He maneuvered around a construction job under an overpass as well and banged the boat a few times.  A hand written sign inside the boat said 'propina 100 pesos' and I pointed it out to Paul.

Apparently Xochimilco means “place of flowers” and was once only vegetation but now has a lot of residencies there.  There is a part of the island dedicated to just vegetation but that would be part of a 5-hour trip that would cost much more.  As it was we floated down the main stream for 30 minutes and turned around to return.  But we did see and take pictures of the birds, we heard mariachi music and we had musicians with a marimba (large xylophone) and guitar floating along willing to play us a song but we could hear them play for others as well.  There were flat boats filled with people laughing and enjoying their food and huge parties going on.  People selling beer came by and souvenir vendors and food cooked right on their barges.   Along the edges of the stream were nurseries filled with plants for sale.  Our driver kept asking if we wanted to stop to buy anything but we didn’t.  It felt like we had begun on the quiet end of the stream and was making our way to the party area when we turned around.  Paul and I quietly sat in our boat that would comfortably hold 14 people with a table down the middle and colorful chairs down the sides.  Our driver maneuvered our boat on the trip back but seemed to bump another boat who bumped him back.  It has to be hard.  I asked Paul what he tipped and he said 40 pesos.  Glad he is the one who deals with the money."

Our first ride on the very busy light train.

Our driver and his 15 foot pole. 

Everyone travels by boat here.

There were a lot of flowers for sell at the side of the canal.

These men played their music as they floated.

The musicians had their boat.

These were the party boats and we could easily hear their laughter and music.

Our driver maneuvered around other boats and the repair site.

Back to the parking lot.

Xochimilco - the streets, cathedral and market place

The streets of the city of Xochimilco were narrow.

It was a tourist town with lots of shops.

We found the local cathedral and actually went inside via the back door.

We left from the front door.

There was the outside market all ready for Valentine's Day.

There was a big, nice, clean inside market as well--with bathrooms.

They sell literally everything in the market.

They had very nice looking fresh fruits and vegetables.

Then we joined the crowd again.
We were part of this group leaving the light train and heading to the metro.