Friday, August 8, 2014

Ronald and Ellizabeth Gage

Ron and Elizabeth are on their way today to Bellevue to the temple to witness the marriage of their daughter, Andrea to Ken Krull.   The happiness of the occasion seemed to be reflected in them this morning and so I tried to capture that feeling.  The posed photos I took of them, just didn't do the job.  But this one I caught afterward, and I think I got it!
We've had a good time while they have been staying with us.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

A Writer In the House

I just talked with Dwight about his latest plan to write Western Romance novels that are about 3-4 pages long. After suggesting the hero wouldn't even be able to ride into town and see the sweet school marm in just 3-4 pages, I told him about John's book that is for sale on Amazon. Dwight asked me why I hadn't put something on Penrose Mornings about it, so I am repenting and putting a quick note here. John worked long and hard on this project and we were excited when he said it was actually going to print. He has received some great comments personally, as well as made some interesting contacts as a result of his book. Just in case you are wondering, it isn't exactly light reading. Sorry about the "Click to look inside" arrow. Can't figure out how to get rid of that. 

The Pitfalls of Reform: Its Incompatibility with Actual Improvement by John Tanner

Monday, July 14, 2014

Happy Birthday Louise

A rare time when we all, except Steve, were in Penrose.  This picture was taken at Burchell's.  Louise, we did have a good time regaling Liz with our stories of our visits to Paris with our friend Pierre, which Liz ate up hook line and sinker.  We're all here for you today, Louise, and Steve is below.

Here's Liz's wonderful collage for your birthday 


And since we all need to be together today, here is Steve (John Wayne)

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Birthday Time for Louise - July 14th

 This happy picture was taken last summer when Louise and Cheryl came to Preston for some shared Show 'n Tell to awe and amaze each other with  the quilts we have made, and to enjoy the camaraderie that we also share.  Louise has always been an example for me to follow in so many ways - She taught school, so I knew that I should do so, too.  She made quilts, so I knew that I should do the same.  She continues on with her sense of humor and optimistic outlook on life.  She sets an example for all of us.  The sister bond is very strong, and brings joy into my life.  May this day be a good one, and may you have many more to share with family, Louise dear.
This old picture is a favorite - First day of school.  As I recall, Louise was a freshman and I was in the 5th grade.  Back to Penrose for a minute.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Fun Reading and Reminiscing

I found an ad for this magazine and decided to try it. What fun stuff. It's  full of stories about long ago. So many of them sound like the way we grew up. Check out their website at .

Something fun from the magazine is another website called: . It will help you find a radio station near you or allow you to hear podcasts of Hollywood 360 on TalkZone. The radio shows left for this month are:
6-21:  The Aldrich Family, Dragnet, The Hollywood Star Playhouse and Escape
6-28:  Our Miss Brooks, Boston Blackie, Gunsmoke, The Humphrey Bogart Theatre.

With nothing good on TV, this may give us a fun alternative.

Have fun.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

We Haven't Changed A Bit

We were just a couple of little kids 50 years ago. There were sure a lot of things for us to learn. I guess 50 years isn't much when compared to eternity, but it is hopefully a good start. 

Friday, May 30, 2014


Another cherished classic of Stephen Michael taken by Dwight.  The background looks like some area we might be for a picnic.  What a charming child!  And you know what......he still has that charm us all.  Happy Birthday to our LITTLE brother.  We are so happy that you are doing well....with Mary Lynn's help.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Happy, Happy Birthday Elizabeth, Dear!

Elizabeth's five children are mixed in here between a spouses and a couple of children.  You can tell that laughter rules when they are together.  Happy Birthday, Elizabeth!  79 is a really big number.  You are dear to us all.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Do Over - Surprise Package From Louise

I deleted a couple of posts from yesterday, because after reading them I thought they sounded a little "snarky". This is an attempt at doing better.
The mail brought me a surprise package from Louise. Can you guess what was in it? Just by way of a clue, I now know when she was born, when her children were born, who they are married to, etc. Thank you Louise for your efforts. That was a lot of gathering of info for you to do.
Her efforts put my/our family history project back on the front burner and hopefully will give everyone else the courage to get their records and photos to me over the next few weeks. Perhaps I am being optimistic, but I think we can still get this done by Christmas.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Remembering Mother

Robert Petersen, Shannon, and Mother in her backyard.

Mother's pose tells so much about her.  In-law children were included in her circle of care and love.  Grandchildren were at her side curious about what she was doing.  She stayed in her Sunday dress for the entire day, with an apron worn as she cooked Sunday dinner, washing dishes afterward.  The camera..........her own need to record the family doings to add to the years of history she had previously kept when she was able to stop time and that we can view anytime at our own desire.   And that smile..........and the touch of her hand. 
We are privileged to honor her this Mother's Day 2014.  We are forever grateful!

Monday, April 28, 2014

No Snow, No Rain, Just Pretty Posies

When we woke up this morning the radio was telling us that anyone traveling east out of Salt Lake City towards Park City should watch for the snowplows. However, we looked outside and although the mountains to the east of us were getting snow, we had sunshine. This is what our front yard looked like. Just thought I would share. Besides, after telling me that I am a pain in the neck, Dwight told me to post this.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Happy Birthday to Judy!

 One of my favorites from days of yore - written in Mother's hand.
 Judy always had a happy, optimistic outlook - and was full of nonsense from the get-go.  Love this picture -and she grew up to be beautiful.
And this picture, looking very un-Judy like, but look at the height of the lilac bush - early days in Penrose, for sure.

Judy, we can always depend on you for listening, counsel, advice (even if we don't always take it), and lots wisdom.  You have always helped us to look on the bright side of things, even in times of stress and difficulty.  Thank you for being there - can't wait to read your autobiography.  I know it will be full of memories, both shared and new to those of us who left home early on.  May this be a very good year for you and your family - you are dearly loved.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Look What Laura Found

I love it when Laura is on spring break and has computer time. Check out the link below for something really neat. Some of you may have already run across this, but it was new to me. How fun it is to see Dad's name.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Powell High School

Now, I read in the online pages of the PT that the "old" Powell High School is being torn down.  I remember in the early 1970's, when I went back to teach in Powell in Miss Harkins' English room in the REAL old high school, that this school was a state of the art high school, with wide halls, spacious rooms, etc.  Where did it all go wrong?  Has time really flown that fast?

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Who Remembers the Radio Broadcasts of the Old Fashioned Revival Hour?

OK, this one has been rattling around in my brain (or little gray cells, as Poirot calls them) long enough.  So here it is:

This is radio station KGHL in Billings Montana bringing you Your Old Fashioned Revival Hour!
Every day with Jesus is sweeter than the day before
Every day with Jesus I love Him more and more
Jesus loves and keeps me and He's the One I'm waiting for
Every day with Jesus is sweeter than the day before

And with the little song, that's about as long as we ever listened to the Old Fashioned Revival Hour, so we never had an opportunity to become revived.  But how clearly I remember the song and the KGHL greeting.  One more tidbit among millions.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

2 Cents From Judy

Maybe this might be something that Dwight had in mind with his last blog post.

From September of 1980, I have a letter from him of which I am quoting a snippet.

"If you can think of anything else Mom would like or would enjoy please either go ahead and get it and let me share expense or let me know so we can sent it from here.  There are so many things I have thought of over the years that I would like to send her and wish I could have or would have when she would have enjoyed them, but I don't think 'things' ever were that important to her, so at least maybe nothing has been lost.  I worry about her being warm in the night in that house, with the heat turned down."

This is just such a lovely passage, full of loving emotion.

Six Blood Siblings, Six Separate Sets of Memories

As of March 2014, we six Blood siblings are still around, meaning in mortality.  From oldest to youngest, we are Louise, Dwight, Elizabeth, Judy, Ann, and Steve.  Like the Blind Men and the Elephant, we each have a different view and a different set of memories of growing up in Penrose, Cody, and Ralston.  I (Dwight) was the first to leave, in January 1950.  Louise essentially left at the same time, since she moved into Powell to continue school at the junior college there.  I was 17 when I left home.  My memories of Penrose consisted of nine years in the little brown house, three years in Ralston, and four years in the white house that was the Blood family home until our parents moved to Washington state.  My sibling memories are most closely linked to Louise and Elizabeth, being closer in age.  I can remember the exact days that Ann and Steve were born but, for the life of me, I have no idea how Judy showed up there in our bedroom with the other three of us in the little brown house.

Thus, my memories of Penrose are most closely linked to we three older siblings, since the other three were still young when I left home.  Getting better acquainted with them during the past few years has been one of the delights of being a big brother.  Since I left home in 1950, most of my memories of Penrose are limited, first, to the little brown house where I spent the first nine years of my life.  This house today would hardly pass minimal housing standards but, to us, it was a paradise among the cottonwoods and the apple orchard. Louise started school in 1935 and I started school in 1936, riding the primitive school bus on an arduous long journey into Powell, 12 miles away as the crow flies, but many miles longer in collecting children along the route.  I wore bib overalls and had a bowl-type haircut with my blond bangs hanging in my eyes.

In 1941, we moved to a small farm a mile west of Ralston on the Powell-Cody highway.  We spent the war years there, again riding the school bus into Powell and enjoying the much shorter route and less time bouncing over the rough roads on the Penrose route.  And then in 1944, after my Uncle Orvil died, Dad moved us back to Penrose to manage Grandpa Wasden's farm, for a brief time with Uncle Norman Sorensen.

After leaving home, I was able to come home only sporadically.  During college at the University of Wyoming, I usually could not afford to come home for many of the holidays since I had to work to stay in school.  After leaving Laramie, we lived in Bozeman Montana, Fort Collins Colorado three times, Ann Arbor Michigan twice, Washington, D. C., State College Pennsylvania, Cheyenne Wyoming, Laramie again and, finally, Provo-Orem Utah.  Since our parents had moved to Olympia Washington, we rarely were able to have either the time or the resources to travel that far and, often, gaps of two or three years existed between times when we could visit our parents.

Thus, my memories of home and Penrose are restricted to a narrow early window of time and space.  It is up to everyone else to fill in the gaps and tell the stories and relive their own memories.  Judy is now writing her life story, Louise and Elizabeth have told their stories, and Judy is writing hers.  That means that Ann and Steve  remain to tell the missing stories from the times when none of the rest of us were around home and we can only fill in the gaps with our imaginations.

Besides our more formal life stories, we all have much to gain from sharing stories and reminiscences here on the blog.  Since some of cannot remember who played last night's basketball game, it matters little whether we can remember exact stories and sequences.  What matters is the spirit of the stories, the light we share from the memories, and the ties that bind us.

Ann is working on a great project with family pictures and brief family stories, and I need to finish my contribution to this project.  I hope we can all take just a few minutes now and then to share some special memory or story here on the blog since such postings tend to wake us all up and keep us in touch with each other.  And who knows how long we will be able to continue doing that?

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Title picture

Dwight, don't know how else to let you know that the lilacs lend themselves so well to this repeating design along the sides, and I love the road sign.  Is that sign there now?

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Wash Day in Penrose

This story by Ann needed to be brought to light, so here it is.  I hope you agree!

Dwight's post also suggests we talk about what went on in the kitchen/multipurpose room. Here are some of my imperfect memories. Since this is how I remember it, then this is how it must have been for me.
Saturdays were the most amazing. After breakfast was cleaned up, Mother would pull out the wringer washing machine from the closet, bring in the bench stand from outside, along with the tub that hung on the coal shed. It was used for rinsing the clothes in, once they were done agitating in the tub of the wringer washer. 

I was considered "too little" to be of much help, but I can remember going out to "help" hang the wet clothes on the clothes line. My job was to hand the wet clothes to the official hanger-upper.

When the laundry was washed and all hung out to dry, the washer went back into the closet and the tub went temporarily back outside. Then there was bread to make and sometimes something special to bake for Sunday. 

Cleaning supplies were kept in the kitchen closet and so we would drag (that is how I felt about that job) out the broom, dustpan, dust clothes and dust mop and clean the house. In my memory that was an every Saturday occurrence.

Then, when the day was winding down, the tub that had been previously used for rinsing the clean clothes was brought back into the kitchen. The fire in the coal stove was stoked which made the room toasty warm (most of the time), doors were closed, water was heated in both the water reservoir in the stove, as well as the tea kettle and we would start the round of Saturday night baths. The water got kind of thick as we got towards the end of 8 people, but I remember the water getting changed midway through, which probably meant either the tub was taken outside and dumped and then brought back in for round 2, or some of the water was scooped out using a bucket and then fresh, clean water was added to the tub. When the last bath was taken, Mother, who by then must have been absolutely exhausted, would get down on her hands and knees and, using the bath water, scrub the old linoleum kitchen floor. Regardless of our circumstances, she worked really hard to keep our home clean, as well as our family.

As to Elizabeth's comment about the electric stove, in my memory that was a magical time. I hadn't heard any discussion about what was going on until it happened. The stove was from the Home Ec. building at the high school. They were replacing the "old stoves" with a newer model and were selling the old ones for what must have been a good deal. And moving out of the coal stove meant the well worn linoleum would have to be replaced. I can remember the smell of the glue Dad used to lay down the new flooring, as well as the magic that happened when the wiring was done for the electric stove and it was plugged in. There were buttons on the stove that you pushed for the specific heat you needed on each burner. The buttons lite up in colors, which was "awesome". The clock had a timer on it that worked beautifully until it was struck by lightening. I can't remember who it was, but someone was standing washing dishes when the lightening struck, coming through the kitchen window and hitting the clock. It had a burned mark on it which served as a constant reminder of that event.

Friday, February 28, 2014

Throw Back Thursday--Oops it is Friday!

Beautiful Kathryn Ann and her little daughter, Kristen helping with a wedding at the Puget & Yew chapel.  1983.  That was a wonderful time for us with many family members close by.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Louise's Kitchen Komment!

Please note:  Louise's comment for Dwight's post about the Penrose kitchen!  I found it in the waiting to be reviewed to be published!  Good job, Louise.  Please don't quit trying!  Remember, you and I have a "deal" anyway.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

A List of Items in the kitchen of our Penrose home 1944-1949

As best as I can remember, here are the items that were in the kitchen of our Penrose home during the years I was there between 1944 and 1949:

  • Starting on the east side of the room to the right of the door to the living room: the clock shelf, with a succession of alarm clocks, some of which worked, some of which were cussed.  The clock on the clock shelf was the monitor of our lives, time for school, time for church, time for bed.

  • Below the clock shelf was the woodbox (blue?) with kindling and paper to start fires in the kitchen and in the living room.
  • In front of the woodbox was the coal bucket.
  • Somewhere in the vicinity was the shovel, alternatively called the coal shovel or the fire shovel, used for adding small lumps of coal to the stove fires or for scooping ashes out of the ash pits of the stoves to haul outside.
  • Next, moving to the right, the coal stove for both cooking and heating.  That meant trying not to cook much during the summer heat. As I remember, four removable lids were to the left on the top of the stove.  To the far right was the hot water reservoir.  Under the stove top was the oven.  A shelf was two or three feet above the stove top where the matches were kept.

  • On the south wall were two cupboards, one with doors (to the left of Liz who is drying dishes) and one open cupboard (to the right of Louise who is washing dishes).  Mother's meager collection of pots and pans were kept in the lower cupboard on the left.  Louise and Liz are using the two battered white enamel dishpans, used for bread making and everything else, but one for washing and one for rinsing at dish time.  To Louise's immediate right is the flour bin.  And then, in retrospect, the incredibly tiny fridge that served a family of eight people.  This is the only known photo of the south side of the kitchen.
  • On the west wall just around the corner from the fridge was the wash stand on which were kept two water buckets carried in from the pump 20 yards away from the kitchen.  Also on the wash stand was an enamel wash basin.  To the immediate left on the floor was the "slop" bucket, in which leftovers and waste were dumped.  I taught Steve the principles of centrifugal force in showing him how to twirl a full slop bucket (outside, of course), over one's head without spilling a drop. Mostly, we threw waste water out the west door a little way out in the yard.  A single dipper for drinking was in the water buckets.  And, yes, we all drank out of it.
  • Above the wash stand was the medicine cabinet.   Dad kept his HIS brand shaving soap and Gillette razor and blue blades there, which we replenished each Christmas for 25 cents a package from Fryer's Pharmacy in Powell.  Also, we had aspirin, but very little else.
  • To the right of the washstand, between the washstand and the west door, was the cream separator.  The buckets of milk were carried in from the cowbarn after milking and the milk was separated from the cream after saving out enough milk in bottles in the fridge for drinking.  The cream was dumped in the cream can which reposed behind the slop bucket, where it soured and got hauled to town once a week to sell to the creamery there, and often provided the only meager ready cash for buying the week's necessities.  The skim milk was carried back out to the barn and fed to the calves.  Dad always said the skim milk gave the calves pot bellies, so I was always reluctant to drink skim milk for many years because I thought the same fate awaited me.
  • To the right of the west door out to the yard and along the north wall was the table where eight people gathered to eat.  The clock shelf is on the wall in the background and you can see the stove back and shelf.

  • This concludes my inventory of the items in the very tiny kitchen in the Penrose home in which I spent my final five years at home before leaving for college.  A few years later, Dad added an electric stove and replaced the coal stoves with gas heat.  
  • Additions and corrections and stories about what went on in this kitchen are welcome.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

More Important Stuff

I have debated about putting this in an email or posting it on the blog, but since the blog seems to need an infusion of energy, I decided to embarrass us all by posting this here.  If we complain or put comments or lamentations about how we can't get this done, then it does become public knowledge.  And then again, if no one reads the blog there is always the excuse of "I didn't know".  

So, on to the subject of the day.  It is time to get back to important stuff, which includes gathering photos and then other information so I can put together something wonderful (potentially) for the posterity of  RMB and MAWB.  

Now, it is important to put this in context.  Dwight says this "ain't" going to work because no one is going to do it, but I told him he was wrong,  Please let me be right, just once, even though I am the "little" sister to most and I still think I can get Steve to do what I tell him to do.

Here are the details of phase one.  From each of you, by FEBRUARY 21, 2014, I need the following: PHOTOS. Oh, yeah, you want to know what photos.  Let me clarify - I need photos of each of you, alone or with spouse; photos of your children with their children, and great grandchildren, etc.  In other words this is the pictorial part of our history.  All of these can be sent to me electronically, or send me the "true" photos (as opposed to electronic photos), I will scan them and return your photos to you.  The photos do not need to be professionally done, just clear.  They could have been taken five years ago, 10 years ago, whenever, just as long as they look like you.  Children's photos can be in groups, or all by their lonesome, however with whatever you send me, please identify the people in the photo.  If the photos are black and white, that is fine, if they are in color that is fine.  For example:  there is a wonderful picture of Louise that was taken for her 80th birthday (so she doesn't need to send that one to me, because I already have it), so now she just needs to gather her family photos.  I can also go to the blog and pull off certain photos if that is all I can get.  

Please gather what you can and get them to me.  Also, just put a quick comment on the blog that says "I got it" or some such thing so I know you have read this and I don't have to bug you individually.  We have one month for phase one.  If you have any suggestions, complaints, etc.  I am open to suggestions, but call Judy if you have complaints.  I hear she is good at solving problems.

I'll get back to you in a week with a progress report.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Steve and the big lamp

I do hate to put anything on the blog to go ahead of the wonderful pictures of Laura's beautiful day, but I keep looking at old pictures, too.  This one brings back memories, and I can put colors in this picture.  The couch was a pale aqua, the chair a reddish color, and the the six-sided lampshade with Pocahontas  (Dad's name for that panel) a definite antique.  So you think Steve was reading anything but a comic book?

Monday, January 6, 2014

Wedding Photos

Here are a few photos from Laura and Jeremy's wedding.  Sweet times!
The day was perfect - blue skies but very chilly.  Storms were coming but they held off for a couple more days.

Happy, happy, happy!

 I'm not going to list everyone's name, just know that this is the group we had for Thanksgiving dinner plus one who couldn't be at the temple, as well as filling up the house during an amazing weekend.   A few went home to sleep, but let's just say our house was full of laughter, story telling (do you remember when?), and catching up.  It was wonderful.
Paul says we look kind of old.  We are ok with old as long as happy is included in that description.

The "Tanner" girls - 

This photo is a hoot.  Kristen wanted a photo of her and Nate.  Having Gwen in the photo wasn't a surprise, but Jonah was an added bonus.  Look hard and you will find him.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Robert and Judith Petersen

For our 50th Anniversary, we had planned to have an "official" portrait done.  So here we are four years later and we finally got the deed done.  This was taken in July. 

Thursday, December 26, 2013

More Santa Letter Collection

Notice this was to "Judy and Ann and Stephen" yet Dwight is mentioned.  Believers vs. non-believers? 
I have loved these letters.  We carried on the tradition with our kids, and now they are doing the same with theirs.  May there always be a letter from Santa.

Monday, December 23, 2013

More Letters From Santa

 This is the last of the Christmas letters I have - I think!

There is no year on this letter, however I suppose we could have the brown paper sack carbon dated.
The creases are permanently embedded, so just in case you can't read the letter, this is what is says: 
Dere Childrun,
It isnt that there aint no Santy Claus, Its just that some times people think there aint - maybe becoz of what seems to be afare reason - I thot thats what u thot.  Then you hang up your stockings.!  That restores my faith in people but leaves me slightly unprepared this year.  Pleze try again next year.  But if that long legged grasshopper thinks I goofed last year, what has he to sa for himself!
Lots of love to everybody.  Be good for another year one day at a time -
Santy Claus

Another letter - again no date.  This one is written on a wide brown paper sack and so it doesn't fit on my scanner.
"Help!  Help!  I'm snowed under - all this mail!  I'll just have to write one the bunch of you.  Dang it, when you wrote me as you did I just had to kick thru with a little - nothing you want, of course, but a token.  Liz, I hear you had your chance.  That relieves me.  I'd like to add some more p.s.'s but I gotta go.  And when yu gotta -
Santy Claus

This must have been a year for personal replies to our letters.  The responsibility of who wrote to whom must have been shared this year. 

Among Mother's treasures I found the letter below tucked away in her handkerchief box when it came my way.  Amazing how Santa shared our letters.  Where was our "right to privacy"?    I have no idea how old I was - again no date.

The following letter was written when it was just Judy, Steve and me at home.

And the following letter was written probably my last year at home before I graduated from high school. That was the year Dad and Mother gave me my jewelry box.  Steve and I decided to forgo the annual Christmas stocking routine and were gently chastised for our decision.
Fun memories from a long ago time.  Can you smell the peanut brittle?  Or the carrot pudding?  Or remember how it always seemed so magical to go on the last outdoor trek before climbing into bed?  Remember how the clear late night sky would be full of twinkling stars and how we would try to guess which one was the brightest.  And then, in the house there was the newly decorated Christmas tree with twinkling lights and several homemade ornaments, along with the tinsel that had been rescued from the year before - and that felt a little like magic, all by itself.  However, none of this would have meant anything without the little white house that was full of love and family. Christmas memories are a great source of warmth, even on very cold and snowy days.  I love you all.  Merry Christmas!

Christmas 1955

Elizabeth captured this story-telling  picture of Mother on a cold Christmas Morning in 1955.  Details reveal that she had on her milking jeans so barn chores had been part of her day.  However, she put on one of her dressiest shirts in honor of the day.

Mother had babied a geranium through the fall and into the cold of December.  It sat proudly on the desk with light from that east window to keep it green.  I was careless and knocked it off the desk, breaking the pot and smashing the plant/ She didn't get mad at me, but I could tell it was a big loss to her. 

I was determined to find a way to replace it and eventually found this one at McGlathery's Florist in Powell.  It was one of the most expensive gifts I ever bought. I got it home somehow and hid it in the bottom of our tiny closet till Christmas morning.  The recorded smile was worth every effort and it is one of the most remembered gifts that I gave.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013