Showing posts with label 2013 blog project. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 2013 blog project. Show all posts

Monday, January 06, 2014

Reviewing 2013

I sincerely apologize for keeping my goals posted on this blog, but it's such a great (and easy way) for me to find them.

Part of me feels really sad when I look at my goals from January of 2013, especially with what happened just a couple of days later.

I didn't write about family history.
I didn't lose weight.
I worked on the organization but with pretty marginal success.
I did get more clients!  In fact by the end of 2013, I was running around like a chicken with my head cut off because I had so much to do.
I did get a new calling.  (I'm now in the 2nd Counselor in the Primary.)

I've been taking my sweet time as I think about my next year's goals.  What do I want to achieve?  What is valuable?  How much of anything is too much?

Tuesday, January 08, 2013


The words were spoken softly and gently, but they hit hard as if he were being slapped.

"I need you to come identify the body of your son," the mortuary owner said in that gentle way people attain when they constantly deal with death.  "Mr. Hughes?"

"Yeah," Lloyd replied.

"Sometimes when people he did, especially in intense heat--often, when they've been out of that situation for a few hours, their bodies turn coal black. There is absolutely nothing you can do about it.  But I need to prepare case."

Lloyd hung up the phone, grabbed his hat and coat, and drove to the mortuary.  In 1940, it was only days before Christmas--the holiday that would never happen in the Hughes home again. It was cold, but even with his coat on Lloyd felt eerily chilled. He had no real recollection of the drive to the mortuary, yet somehow he arrived.  He grabbed the heavy door handle and entered.  Lloyd was ushered back to where the bodies were kept.  Standing together with the undertaker, the body was uncovered.

Lloyd held his breath, grateful that the body was not an unnatural black and simultaneously devastated that he was looking at the body of his 19-year-old son.  There he lay, handsome as always, but now missing the spark that meant he was Bill.   Lloyd checked for Bill's right hand where his middle finger had been damaged in an accident and stood shorter than was usual.  On Bill's left shoulder was a one inch yellow butterfly tattoo.

"Well, that looks like my son," Lloyd said in his slow Iowa way.  "But then he's got that tattoo.   My kids all know how I feel about tattoos. None of them would have ever had a tattoo on them. I don't know what to say,"  He paused and spoke a little more quietly than before,  "I think that's my boy."

The mortician glanced at Lloyd.  There was no doubt in Mr. Hughes' face: this was his son.  "Thank you, sir, for coming in."

Thursday, January 03, 2013

The Thing About 2013

The older I get and the bigger the projects I decide to tackle, the more I realize that I'm going to have to be very disciplined in order to get it all done.  (Which brings me to wondering if there's anything I need to let go? )

The biggest thing I want to do this year is this blog project.  Working with my grandma to create a beautiful family history record of many of her family members will mean so much to me and my family in the years to come.  

And, dear family, I want this to be a group project.  If you see a typo, misspelling, improper grammar, or verb tenses that aren't making sense; speak up!  I will also be happy to listen to your take on events and apply what I can where I can, but if your version differs from Grandma's--I'm going with hers.  This is her history from her point of view.

This year I'd also love to lose weight, get organized, get a couple more clients, and hopefully get a new church calling (I've been doing Primary music for 6+ years now).  But all of that pales in comparison to the job of recording this family history.  

I have moved upon by the Spirit of Elijah and I've found a way that I can contribute in a meaningful way.  So this year, my most important goal is to record at least 40 family history posts.

This year as I work on this family history project, I'm not moving in a linear way though time or through the family.  I will be jumping around quite a bit, from person to person and story to story.  Whatever is pressing on my Grandma's mind is what I'll write about.  Please take each story on it's own merit.  I hope you enjoy the ride.  

Tuesday, January 01, 2013


A fierce storm raged overhead.  Rain came down in torrents.  Lightening slashed the black midnight sky, and thunder rolled and rumbled through the heavens.  The clock in the town square slowly pealed twelve times, the sound flowing over the darkened, sleeping little city.

In a large clapboard house on the corner, however, all the lights were ablaze, the storm was hardly noticed.  In a bedroom on the first floor lay a young mother, twenty-two years of age.  Her husband of six years was with her, and so was a doctor who was helping her through the final stages of labor.  For the young mother it was the first time she had been away from family when one of her babies was born.  The new child was baby number four for her, and all four of the babies had been born at home.  The mother was afraid if she went to the hospital to give birth she might not bring her own baby home.  That was unthinkable!!

The town clock pealed once, it was 12:15.  Labor continued.  Time passed so slowly.  Then the clock pealed twice, it was 12:30.  Labor was ending.  A little after midnight on January 24, 1925, as the storm screamed and howled around the corners of the house, a baby girl was born.  I was that baby girl.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

2013 Project

I'm doing something so exciting that I can hardly contain myself!  My grandmother, Carolyn Kirkwood, (my mother's mother) is helping me record her family history on my blog this next year.  I'm so, so excited!  I've taken my digital recorder over to her house and had a lovely chat.  These stories will be anything but boring.

In my family history there are murders, suicides, train wreaks,  rushed marriages, tragic deaths, divorce, conversion, vacations, and happy family holidays.

2013 will be a year to remember.