Grandparents as Spiritual Guides

by Ruth Tervol

I grew up in Michigan. Our farm was rich in luscious vegetation and abundant crops. Mother’s garden would sprout on cue every spring. Every year we raised cows, chickens, and pigs. Some years we even raised lambs. At times it was hard to know which animals were our pets and which were for sale as each was treated kindly and with great care.

ARMSTRONG WEDDINGN PHOTO

Armstrong Wedding Photo

My maternal grandparent’s home was ten miles away.  One day each week, Mother took my brothers and sisters and me to Grandmother’s house where we played in the barn with Grandpa, and the cats. Sometimes Grandpa let us ride the horses, and at other times we hiked the woods behind the barn.  After lunch Grandpa would sit in his chair to take a nap, and Grandma would set us down to read to us from the Bible. She put so much into those stories, I can at times still hear her voice reading ‘Daniel and the lion’s den,’ ‘for everything there is a season,’ or “no room at the inn.” My Grandmother was the anchor of my faith that I practice today.

GRANDMA DESSIE LOWE

Grandma Dessie Lowe

My paternal grandparent’s farm was 25 miles away. We saw them less often, but love surrounded us in their home. Grandma would make a pot of opossum stew and loaves of homemade bread, which we would enjoy as we sat around the table together and laughed at the stories Grandpa told. We especially liked the one about our dad coming home from school with a snake in his lunch box. He had found it on the way home and forgot to tell Grandma about it. We would howl with laughter. The spirit of love was always there.

In a paper titled Senior Spirit I recently read an article that quoted Author Dr. Arthur Kornhaber. I was blessed by this article because it brought back memories of the year 1995; when I first attended Puyallup United Methodist church. I had a four year old granddaughter who loved to come to ‘Grandma’s Church’ and a newborn who would follow in her sister’s footsteps the next year.  So I became involved in Vacation Bible School.

My first year as Director of Vacation Bible School I met two grandmothers who impressed me.  Merle Davenport and Betty Driver both volunteered to help and came with grandchildren. I learned much from those two grandmothers that first year. They were demonstrating the suggestions Dr. Kornhaber had laid out in his book The Grandparent Guide: The Definitive Guide to the Challenges of Modern Grandparenting.

http://www.amazon.com/The-Grandparent-Guide-Definitive-Grandparenting/dp/0071383115#

Dr. Kornhaber wrote: “Acting as a spiritual guide involves teaching your grandchild to harvest such fruits of the spirit as love, tolerance, compassion, reverence, joy, peace, gentleness, faith, and kindness.”  I saw these two grandmothers demonstrating the following suggestions Dr. Kornhaber had made:

  • Display kindness and compassion toward others
  • Help others who are less fortunate.
  • Demonstrate reverence for nature.
  • Show respect for others’ beliefs.

Merle told me we should involve our grandchildren in our own rituals of faith and positive aspects of our belief, which led me to share joyous love with my granddaughters, and the need to share it. We shared blessing before meals and prayers at bedtime. We shared the birds and the worms in the backyard.

We signed up for Grandcamp at Lazy F, a United Methodist Campground, located about 140 miles from Puyallup. Grandcamp is where grandparents and grandchildren, between the age of 5 and 12, come together to work, play, and worship together for a week during the summer. At Grandcamp I met another Grandmother from Puyallup United Methodist Church: Jeanne O’Donnell. Jeannie’s grandchildren were older than mine, but I learned from her how to love those older grandchildren on the choices they made.

Jeannie shared with me some of the things she found were important for her grandchildren to see.

  • Always drive the speed limit
  •  Insist on paying the correct price for an item
  •  Return any excess change
  • Always tell the truth

Merle and Betty also practiced all these traits, and I remembered my grandmothers doing them as well.  As grandparents it is important for us to lead by example. Loving Jesus and loving them as He does.

I know my children taught values to my grandchildren, but their primary focus was on immediate care, education and social skill building.  As a grandparent I could transcend the pressing needs of now to concentrate on soul nurturing.  By blessing my granddaughters with my approval and invoking God’s blessing on them I have given them a gift that is priceless.

As Merle, Betty and Jeannie taught me, only I could set the pace and role of nurturer that is uniquely me. I must take every opportunity to nurture my grandchildren. They never outgrow the need for grandparents. Children get special experiences with their grandparents. One day my four year old granddaughter asked if she could ‘type’ a story on my typewriter. “Of course,” I told her. She had pounded on my typewriter for some minutes when I asked her what her story was about.

“I don’t know,” she said, “I can’t read yet, can you read it to me?”

I ‘read’ from her page about a little girl at the beach.  She loved it.

God bless us in our Grand parenting, and a special blessing to Merle, Betty, Jeanne, and all nurturing Grandparents. I salute the memory of my maternal grandmother who went home to be with Jesus when I was twenty eight years old and who told me to be aware as a Christian that people were usually watching to see what we would do in any given circumstance. I now know it is especially true of grandchildren.

Titus 2:7-8   In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that those who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bad o say about us.

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What Are We Doing Here Anyway?

by Char Davenport

This is not an organized write, but a ramble.  A ramble that I am sure many have had and it is just my turn.  It is about life, how it comes to be, and how it ends.

In 1990 my father died of lymphoma.  He was 74, and I was 35.  I thought he was quite old, but now at 58, I realize he wasn’t.  He struggled at the end, personally tried to be strong, physically deteriorating.  I promised somebody, I don’t know if it was him, myself, or God that from that point on I would look out for my mother.  Now she is 96, and I’m nearing 60, pondering how long she will go on.

I, in no way, want to lose my mother.  But I do wonder why she is still here.  She has fallen down the stairs, had a kitchen cabinet drop on her head, had breast cancer, a clavicle break, and a broken pelvis.  She has broken a wrist three times, had one hip replaced, and later a rod placed in her femur.  And in 1988 they inserted a new heart valve that was to give her another seven years.  That was 25 years ago.  She is an anomaly in many ways.

In most cases I feel things happen for a reason, but this one is a challenge.  There are older people across this planet lying in back bedrooms, sitting in nursing homes, parked in front of televisions all seemingly waiting.  I’m sure they think about it, at least part of the time.  Are they waiting for the next visitor, the next meal, the next game show?  Or are they waiting for the next passage, the exit from this world as we know it.  It probably just seems dramatic because there are so many now, or maybe just because I am closer to it.  It brings up that old question, just what are we doing here anyway?

Maybe the elderly or bedridden just seem like they are waiting.  Maybe we are all waiting, but some of us are too busy to think about it.

I wonder sometimes if my mother feels guilty to know she is alive when someone else loses a daughter of 38 or a child of 10.   I decided not to ask her.  But why do healthy athletes drop dead, and young viable people contract cancer?  Is life really NOT about how we live?  Maybe it is all a precursor for something else.

Twenty-five years ago in a fifth grade history book from which I was teaching, I remember reading that the early nomadic tribes would let an elderly member decide when they were done.  And they would leave them.  Leave them to face a winter, a summer, a fall, or a spring, alone.  Alone to meet their maker, to walk the path to the next world, or to no world at all.  I don’t think I could ever leave my mom in a cold tundra alone on a fur mat.  The words spoken silently with the eyes would be unbearable.

At times I wonder if mom is still here because of the lessons that she teaches without teaching.  That we need to lead a simple and spiritual life, that we need to be good to others, and that we should eat our fruits and vegetables. That a whole and complete life can be had if you live it right.  Of course that would imply that a short life was lived wrong, and I certainly don’t believe that.  And the messages spoken with eyes are still with us.

So for now, I will return to the precursor belief.  That maybe we cannot even fathom the complexity of life as God has intended it.  It is certainly strange that we find no other signs of life in this universe.  Can it really be that we are the only living beings in the infinity of the universe?  Pretty lonely, and fairly simple for a God powerful enough to make it all.  Maybe there are different layers of life going on simultaneously, but we only fathom the life we are currently living.

When people occasionally see ghosts, or aliens, or spaceships, couldn’t it be some form of life from one of God’s other dimensions?  Maybe that is where we are all going.  Maybe we all have a purpose there.  And maybe mom’s purpose hasn’t needed her yet.  This concept is a little different than the norm, but it makes the purpose for existence more believable, gives it more merit.  When God is ready for mom, or for me, or for you, He will call.  And he will assign you your next purpose.

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It Has Been a Year of Laughter and Sorrow

by Ruth Tervol

October 2013

Ruth and RichBecause You have been my help, therefore in the shadow of Your wings I will rejoice, My soul follows close behind You; Your right hand upholds me. Psalm 63:7-8

My husband, Richard Marcott Tervol, died one year ago on October 3, 2012.  This picture was taken of us at the Michigan State Fair in Detroit, Michigan in 1955. He was just home from serving his years in the Army during the Korean Conflict.

At times I still have difficulty seeing beyond the sorrow; it is the memories that comfort me today and shall continue to do so. As I walked through our kitchen today, my eyes were drawn to the plaque that hangs on the wall above the coffee pot.

It says,“But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”  (Joshua 24:15 NKIV)

Rich had designed every aspect of the kitchen, and then oversaw the remodeling. He was ruth's plaquealways eager to show anyone all the extras. Upon showing the kitchen to George, one of his friends named George told him that it needed one more thing. George said he would be back to Puyallup on Thursday and would drop it by.  Rich invited him to come for lunch on Thursday.  After lunch George presented Rich with this plaque. He had handmade it just for Rich, and Rich proudly hung it on the kitchen wall. Those special moments of the Godly man the Lord gave me to love for 58 years will forever reign in my heart.

I never contemplated being without Rich at my side. He taught me so many things during our years together. He taught me how to follow unconditionally the Lord’s precepts. He always told me that God designs transitions and provides the grace to embrace whatever follows as we moved from here to there and back.  This transition of going on without Rich is the hardest I have had to deal with.

We had discussed what our end of life desires were, but I never thought I would have to deal with them. There were times during the four weeks that Rich lay ill that I ran away from the truth of what was happening inside his body, and I did not want to know what would come next.  A certain amount of denial seemed to work for both of us.

During the last week of his life he said to me, “Baby, am I going to beat this thing that has a hold of me?”

My mother always told me to tell our loved ones not to worry even in the most difficult times. However, my answer to him was, “The doctors say ‘no’ but I believe in miracles, and God is with us!”

He closed his eyes and said, “Remember our promise to each other. I will always love you.”

A week later he told me good-by for the last time.

A certain amount of denial in this time of trial seemed to ease the way for both of us. I do believe that making plans while we were both healthy, and knowing each of us would carry out the desires of the other help to make this transition easier.  Rich faced this time with courage and left his family with a lesson in love and grace.

Having said all of that I still have a problem with the ‘special days’ holidays…anniversaries …birthday (the following happy picture shows us in Paris on our 50th wedding anniversary).

I always anticipated these events with such happiness. Now I continually fight back the Rich and Ruth in Paristears whenever I think about setting the table with one less place and knowing that no one wants to sit in the chair where Rich always sat.

So I turn to God. I will always need His help. If I was to depend only on my willpower, it would be putting on a brave front and I would never heal.  I am learning not to let the past affect the present. I ask God each day for His help, so the pain of my loss will not destroy the bright moments that come my way forming a new future.

If I take life one moment at a time, I can learn to rely on God’s promises.

“They shall bear fruit in old age: They shall be fresh and flourishing.”  Psalm 92:2 KJV

Corrie Ten Boom said, “The measure of a life is not its duration but its donation.”

Rich’s motto was, “To stay active, not complain, keep the faith, and we would always add value to our life.”

“Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.”  I Thessalonian 5:11 NIV

I am so grateful for the love that others have shown me, for their hugs, their smiles, their phone calls, and their encouragement.

“Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning.”Psalm 30:5 NIV

In my time of grief I have learned that nothing can take the place of the Living Word of God.  When I asked God to embrace me with His love, He gave me this : “For your Maker is your husband, the Lord of hosts is His name; and your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel; He is called the God of the Whole earth.” Isaiah 54:5

When I needed strength: “The Lord God is my strength; He will make my feet like deer’s feet. And He will make me walk on high hills.” Habakkuk 3:19

When peace and care were needed: “Peace I leave with you. My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” John 14:27

The assurance of answered prayer: “Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.” Jeremiah 33:3

Rich and Ruth with RaineeThe Lord gave us fifty eight years together, with three children and 2 granddaughters. It has been a year, 365 days, since Rich went home to be with Jesus. Sometimes it feels like ten years and sometimes like last week. So much has happened around the world and in my community, and the changes in me are astonishing. I am getting used to my own company and have made the first steps into widowhood. I have accepted who I am now.

I will forever remember all the blessings God gave me through Rich.

  • His love for me and his telling me every day
  • His love of nature
  • The necessity of quite time
  • His grin and laugh
  • Vacations – camping, hiking, traveling                Rich and Ruth Hike
  • His wise leadership
  • His generosity
  • His wisdom
  • His courage to stand for truth
  • His sense of humor

As I look back over this year it is very evident that the Lord and His army of angels have been walking by my side. I am thankful for the years we had together. And have learned that death cannot rob me of the joy of my many memories. I praise God for those memories and pray God will keep them sharp.

I know I am getting better, even though I still cry at moments without cause, because I can now think of a job that needs my attention and get the job done. When I wake up at 3 A.M. as I often do, I can think of happy moments, trips we took, trails we hiked, marathons we ran, camping with family and friends, or a special dinner at a restaurant we liked.  I think of the many laughs we had together and feel a warm presence in my space.

Tervols Hiking

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One Long and One Short Ringy-dingy

by Miki Craighead

Mal __ —–.  Evelyn __ —-, Don __ —, Gen __ –, Maxine __ –

In the days when children could roam freely within their neighborhoods. . . and in the days when a child needed to be called to do chores. . . and in the days when the only phone in the house was securely fastened to a wall. . . and in the days when the family gathered every evening around the dining table for dinner, the ensuing problem was how to get the attention of those who were scattered about fulfilling their own agendas and summon them for a meal, a chore, or a phone call.

Untitled

I was in such a family with five children, a mother and dad.  I could be anywhere in our two and a half story house, including the basement making wooden toys, the attic playing dress-up, or in the neighborhood playing games of kick the can, or roller skating on the newly paved street. My siblings, all older, had their own sets of activity.

My dad took great pride in developing new ideas that made living a bit easier.  Since we were a fairly large family and didn’t have great means for extras, my parents frequented the Goodwill store for whatever they needed in supplies. Mother crafted beautiful hooked or braided rugs from 100 percent wool clothing purchased at the Goodwill store. An example of Daddy’s creativity is an outdoor lamp still in use today made from a peanut butter jar which lights the entrance of the house at 2500 North Lawrence, Tacoma.

Summoning one of us kids or the whole family became a huge chore for anyone who needed to get in touch, so Daddy decided to devise a system that would save anyone the inconvenience of yelling or of having to hunt down one of us out in the neighborhood. Thus, the system of the electric bell. Daddy and my older brother Don devised the system by wiring up alarm bells to electricity, mounting one inside the house in a hallway upstairs, and the other outside the house where it could be heard throughout the neighborhood. Its ringer was housed just above the telephone which was mounted near the kitchen.

Each of us five children had a different bell signal. My signal was one long ring followed by one short ring. My sister next in age had one long ring and two shorts. The short rings ascended from one to five from youngest to oldest sibling. The summons for dinner was two long rings. If anyone didn’t hear the sound, or was late, he or she didn’t get to eat dessert, so the system worked brilliantly. 

I think I can safely say that this bell was instrumental in promoting family togetherness. Our family prayed in Quaker silence before the meal, then celebrated and shared each other’s individuality while gathered at the dinner table in response to the bell’s call.

Miki's family postcard

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Blessing a Small Group of Disciples in 2013

daily bread

by Karrie Zylstra Myton

I took my first Disciple class when I was still a baby or, at least, that’s how it feels to me now. I know I’ve taken 3 classes, all at Mason United Methodist Church in Tacoma. I took them while I lived with my grandmother in North Tacoma when I was in my twenties before I had my first child and when I had two bouncing dogs I loved like the moon and the sun. The last class I took when my oldest son was an infant at least twelve years ago.

For those who may not know, Disciple is a 32-34 week course published by Cokesbury through the United Methodist Church. The same group independently reads the Bible with a study guide 6 days a week. The group then comes together in a 2 and a half hour session to discuss, watch videos about the material and prepare for the next session. We also pray for each other daily. The first year’s course reads the entire Bible: 17 weeks in the Old Testament and 17 weeks in the New Testament. The other courses focus on specific parts of the Bible like the prophets or the letters of Paul.

I don’t remember individual verses or passages from my classes over twelve years ago. I remember struggles with passages and with the study material’s interpretation of the passages. I remember meeting at a leader’s gorgeous house where it sat perched above Old Tacoma, looking out over Commencement Bay. I remember experiencing torment in my personal life during one Disciple course and struggling to contribute to the class or even continue on.

I remember watching other members of the class as they wrestled with the texts and the details of their own lives. I remember, perhaps more than anything, the closeness that I developed with the people in the classes because we held each other up, talked of things that mattered deeply, and celebrated with each other for a year of our lives.

Starting a new class now is daunting. It feels a bit like going back in time twelve years. It feels like touching on the scary time I knew when my world turned upside down. It also feels like facing those fears and noticing that, oddly enough, even some of that scary time had joys wrapped inside.

This piece, then, is my messy blessing on our next Disciple class. May it carry us through to spring 2014 and beyond. May we wrestle with the Bible and with other people’s ideas like Joseph with God in the tent. May we follow and come to love like Ruth followed and loved her mother-in-law. May we embrace faith like Mary in her mission to have Jesus. May we find healing in this next Disciple class even as we face the pains of the past, present and future. May we find a joyful surprise waiting for us at the tomb like Mary Magdalene, and then spread words of love to others.  Amen.

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Springtime in My Soul

ruth's spring 2

APRIL 3, 2013

By Ruth Tervol     

Springtime is a time of growth – there is gentle but rich and fierce growth going on in my garden among the lilacs and the mud, the perennials and the muck around them, and in my soul.   It gives me much hope as the days march on one after the other, and growth begins again in my garden and in my soul.  It is also the season of Easter, the death of Jesus and His rising, reminding me that the body may die but the soul never does.

I have experienced the pain of the ‘winter season.’  Rich, my husband of 57 years, passed into the arms of Jesus six months ago. He loved the beauty of springtime and new growth. He spent many hours in the yard weeding and planting. I am looking forward to springtime and feeling his presence in the garden. I still at times feel a deep lonely place where he used to be, but as much as I miss him,  I can concentrate on getting things ready for spring.

As it has now officially arrived – the time of ‘new growth’ – I am trying not to cling to old pain, but looking inside for new growth.  Spring is gentle, but it is the time of enriched growth where trees begin to bloom and plants shoot up.  I was always anxious to get started on planting the garden and cultivating the beds, but Rich would say, “It is not warm enough yet. Just wait a bit.”   I have a desire for order and rest I find in winter, but spring demands new growth both in myself and in the garden, to put away the restful days of winter and find time to garden.  Springtime truly is a time to plant and grow, to pay attention to the needs of others as well as myself.

I received a ‘Thinking of you’ card today from a friend who knows my heart.  “This day,” she said, “May you be overcome by God’s presence, and feel surrounded by his peace and love. May you somehow know the calm and joy that God lavishes on you each day.”  I had felt moments of pain this morning, and things seemed so dark that I wondered if I would ever be able to truly rejoice again. I wept as the voice of her card swept over me! In the midst of my grief, God had revealed Himself to me through my friend.

I believe God was reminding me that He was there in the midst of my pain. I would never be left alone. While the pain did not disappear, somehow my heart felt lighter, the crack in it less deep. I could move on while supporting a broken heart.  This means taking time each day to be alone with God, to lift up those who have needs, and thoughts of those who have moved on.

I have found that there is a light showing me the path to follow each day.  God’s light comes through the clouds to brighten my soul. It is not a light one can see, but a light one must feel. Being at peace where the Lord wants me to go comes from the time I spend with Him. Spending time with Jesus each morning helps me take the next step.  The path is hard, but the beauty on the way lets me see Jesus in those around me.

I have learned on this path that when you love with all you have, you grieve with all that you are. This path the Lord has set out for me seems way too long and has too many switch backs for me to walk alone, so my friends have kept me putting one foot ahead of the other. They stop by and take me out for a walk, invite me to lunch, call and check in by phone, bring me a book, or hand me a biblical promise they have written out on a note pad. Some send me a card, and others just stop by for a hug and chat.

The Lord told me to stay connected! I am grateful for the beautiful friends and family He has given me. It is true that memories still bring tears, but I turn to God with thankfulness then sorrow turns to gratitude. I love the way His Word guides me from sadness to a thankful heart: “He who brings an offering of praise and thanksgiving honors and glorifies Me; …” (Psalm 50:23 TAB) and again “Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. “ (1 Thessalonians 5:18 NIV)

I remember often the fun we had running through the canyon, walking beside a creek, and hiking the trails of Mt. Rainier always together. At times these memories pour over me like a waterfall and the tears stream down my face so I sit down and write a note to the one I love. It helps to know that he is in a beautiful place – sitting at the feet of Jesus.

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I Love Sweet Peas

by Miki Craighead

Sweet peas

Just now my sweet peas are blooming, and I visit them as often as I can to smell their
sweet fragrance.

Sweet peas bring back many pleasant memories of my childhood. When I was still in grade school, I was treated to a time to visit with my cousin Dick Junk who was the same age as I. Since my family did not own a car, my Aunt Elva would travel from Olympia to Tacoma to pick me up and take me on the long journey to Mud Bay, just outside of Olympia. Believe it or not, the trip took nearly a whole day, as Pacific Highway was only a gravel road
in the late 1930’s.

Dick’s mom, my Aunt Margie, planted many wonderful things in her garden which included a large bed of sweet peas. She allowed me to pick as many as I wished, so I would make garlands for my hair and for the pussy cat, and bouquets for the dinner table, and nosegays for my dolls. What a delicious time that was!

Of course cousin Dick didn’t especially enjoy that kind of activity, so I reluctantly gave in
to other more boy-like activities. I learned to row a boat under the guidance of my
cousin. He had the most beautiful blue eyes that God ever created. They were
translucent, semiopaque eyes that lured me into a trance. Oops, I digress with the sigh
of a twitterpated female! We went fishing in Mud Bay with a little row boat and Dick
would have to bait my hook and take care of any fish caught, but it was satisfying that I
could add other accomplishments to my life, even though the fish we caught were only
bullheads which had to go back into the water, thank goodness.

My Uncle Merle and Aunt Margie’s property was also near an oyster farm. Dick and I in
our boat often would row out to a scow where a laborer was sorting oysters. I’m sure
this worker was probably annoyed by our childish inquisitiveness. Sometimes he let us
fish from the scow.

When we got tired of fishing and annoying the oyster guy, we often would row up the
bay and find a fun spot in which to play and tell each other stories. I don’t recall ever
wearing a life jacket in the boat. I’m not even sure they had such things in those days!
And we were totally trusted by the adults in charge, as they never requested to
chaperone us or question where we went or what we did.

Sometimes Dick and I would wander into the woods and look for licorice root, a fern that
grows like a parasite on trees. We would suck on the root, savoring the flavor of real
licorice. With the internet capability, I now learn that licorice root is medicinal, and very
good for sore throats and cough.

Our excursions lasted a goodly amount of time. We would need to relieve ourselves,
and without a bathroom close by we had to be industrious about our needs. All I could
do was hide behind a bush and use big leaves for toilet paper. Since boys are
graciously endowed with an easier way to relieve themselves, Dick was quite
industrious. He found a clear spot on a high precipice and aimed his flow over the hill,
naming his special spot “pee point view!” I remember being shocked and embarrassed
while he proudly aimed his urine out over that high hill overlooking the bay.

July 4th celebrations at Mud Bay were memorable because my parents would have
nothing to do with the noisy, dangerous, fireworks; and these vacations with my cousin’s
family gave me the opportunity to experience them. Uncle Merle let me light sparklers,
and then taught me how to light a punk with which to light and throw a firecracker. But, I
assume that I was as right brained then as I am now, and I mistakingly lit the firecracker
and threw the punk! I can still see Uncle Merle running to the cupboard for the first aid
kit, and hastily bandaging my badly burned thumb!

I now digress and return to visit my pot of sweet peas. Within this aromatic meditative
moment, I am reminded that these sweet smelling blossoms are here only for a brief
time. Like our lives, they wlll wither and die, but only to evolve into seeds and make
possible new blooms in another year. And like the sweet pea, we will wither in old age
and die; but our lives will transform to the spiritual world, leaving behind in our loved
ones important essences of our lives.

Note: The property at Mud Bad is now owned by the State of Washington. My uncle
built a newer home there in later years which was designed by my dad, Stanley T.
Shaw, architect. After the State took over the property, this house was used as the administration building of Evergreen State College.

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