Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Gift of Family

On Penrose Mornings, over the past few years, it has become an undeclared tradition to acknowledge a brother's or a sister's birthday with fun comments, sharing of memories, and expressions of love, all with a little humor tucked here and there. This has become one of my favorite things on my birthday, never knowing what might be written but anticipating that only the good things will be remembered. The writing has been a source of encouragement to keep trying, as well as a comfort when there are challenges or unexpected twists and turns to be dealt with.

Because there appears to be challenges ahead, some unknown, some known, I decided there was something I wanted to do this year. This post isn't really an attempt to change our undeclared tradition, but, perhaps, to add a new dimension to that tradition. On the eve of my 68th birthday, I wanted to tell each of you how much I love you, and how thankful I am for your goodness, for your example to me, for the laughter shared, for the complete acceptance of me and mine regardless of faults and flaws, and for being willing to share your lives with me. I am thankful to be part of an eternal family.

When I look at this photo I can hear Dad's laugh, Mother's encouragement to get with it, Dwight's teasing, yodeling, "intellectual speak" and concern for each of us, Louise's gentle strength and smile, Elizabeth's enthusiasm for a new project, Judy's perfection of Mother's skill of answering a question with a question, and Steve's love of creating beautiful "things". Then there are those who are not in the photo, spouses, children, grandchildren and now, for some, great grandchildren. What a wonderful life we have been blessed with, and that I get to be a little piece of this family is incredible. I am truly blessed, even though I am not excited about the increase in my age.

If I could have a birthday wish this year (it is impossible to cover the important things with just one wish) for our Penrose clan and all those who help make our family complete, it would be that we will find something good in each new day, that we will continue to have faith in eternal principles, that we will give a hug to someone we love daily, and that we will look for one thing to laugh about each day, even if no one else sees the humor.

May we always be there for each other in the good times, as well as when the times are most difficult, and may we always remember that whatever this next year brings, we will not go through it alone. I love you all. Ann

Monday, November 22, 2010

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Pole Chair Again

This is not a great photo, but it does show the pole chair and the recovering job Mother had done on the cushions. This was the last time I was in the Tumwater house. I had taken the train to Olympia to see Dad before we left for Ohio. The stacks of books must be something that is a genetic trait, just ask Velna about Dwight's stacks.
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Saturday, November 13, 2010

The New and Improved Penrose Blood Family Blog

Liz called me this morning to titter, teehee, giggle and make fun of me when she could see I was struggling to fine tune the blog a bit.  Reminded me of when Dad was trying to milk Old Red, the meanest cow I remember.  I got rid of the books for Ann, and I didn't like them either.  I adjusted the column widths so stuff doesn't slop over in the two main columns.  Now we have a poppy or is it a pansy, it has whiskers.  I do not want any comments, complaints, bloviations, or other verbiage, thoughts, or expressions for at least six weeks.  I hate blogger.  Too many limitations on what you can do.  I've thought about moving the blog over either to Typepad or Wordpress, but we seem to have adjusted to blogger so I'd better let well enough alone.

We do have some work to do.  I would suggest we focus a bit on telling short stories and anecdotes and reproducing documents and such in addition to just commenting on the blog posts, though the latter comments are important.  We need to encourage family members who are members of the extended Blood family to feel at home on this blog.  I also encourage readers who visit our blog who are not members of our family to share their experiences in developing family blogs and the benefits their families have received from their blogs.  Finally, we need a major streamlining of the categories to make it easier to archive similar material.  I hope that in the next year or two, heaven willing, that we can compile one or a series of family printed books from archived material.  I hereby resign from fiddling with the blog.  If I could learn HTML I could likely post our own photo on the side backgrounds and maybe in the next life I will be shown by some kindly young person how to do that.

Thank you all for your patience with me and for your continued interest and participation in this blog.  I think we have all found a home here and that we have been blessed with closer contact than we would ever have experienced without Penrose Mornings.  The future of this blog is limited only by the ingenuity of our participants and readers.  I would like to think we would be smart enough to take family blogging and family history blogging to a new and higher level that would not only benefit us, but also be of help to countless others who are considering starting such a blog, or who have started one and then seen it languish.  The benefits are simply too great, the family ties too important, and the heritage to be passed on too valuable and fleeting, to not take this project seriously.  Cheers, dmb

Friday, November 12, 2010

The Cow Barnyard After I Left Home

The shop is on the right, the lean to garage straight ahead, the light pole that the cat named Holstein (a coward) would shinny up and sit on top until his warring battle scarred friends departed, the white house ahead.

Dad working on the new Powell LDS Church 195?

Foundation for the new Powell LDS Church

A Little Peek at a Little Corner of Main (Bent) St. History in Powell WY in 1948

Since we are all waxing tears and eloquence over our home town of Powell Wyoming, here is the only other photo I can find taken on main (Bent to you natives) street.  The significance is not in the girls in the photo, but in the fact that the building on the right was a sort of shed-type building where Hiram Absire, Rose's dad (Rose was my true love in the 3d grade and Louise's friend, but Rose betrayed me in the 7th and I never spoke to her again; now getting back to the sentence, where Hi's Electric was located.  Dad made the sign with cut out block letters on it.  The gap between Hi's Electric and the Coulston Clinic where we went to the doctor until I left home in 1950 and where we had our tonsils out, was obviously just being excavated for Penney's, Moyer's relocated drug store, and whatever else went in there.  In the background is the old Presbyterian Church.  Didn't it get moved to another part of town?  The girls are, knowing you are not interested except for one, are, l-r, Wenoa White who was an Elk Basin oil family migrant, Celia Scott, and Loretta Winterholler.  And Louise, tell me if I'm wrong, but the three girls crossing the street are likely Dora Berryman, Phyllis Jesse, and Phyllis Bell, inseparable in high school.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010


Celebrating the Americans and the institutions that keep us free.  We were surrounded by incredible people that we really knew little about.  Fred Giles, already mentioned, Battle of the Bulge, Burchell Hopkin, B-52 pilot, Dawson also already mentioned, Mel Cozzens a bomber pilot(?), young Mel, Air Force Viet Nam, Sinclair Orendorff, Battle of the Bulge.  I believe the list to be much longer and if you remember please add on to it.

Then of course there is Dwight discussed joining the Marines well past my bedtime with the folks.  I stayed and listened until Mother realized that I was still up and sent me packing.  I do remember that Dwight was passionate in his conversation.  And we move on to modern day, there is Ross who spent a tour in Afghanistan and has landed on almost any runway in the world that would support a plane.

The above photo is merely for illustration  only.  I don't mean to slight anyone here, I know so little, please add, it is a great part of our lives.

Monday, November 8, 2010

New design

You may not like this design, and I'm not sure I do, but we need a little variety here and there.  If this doesn't meet with your approval, say so and we'll fix it.

Main Street of Powell Wyoming 1949

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Something of interest: Our humble blog is going to be listed on GeneaBloggers!

From: Thomas MacEntee

Date: November 7, 2010 4:58:34 AM MST
To: dmblood@mac.com

Subject: Your blog has been added to the list at GeneaBloggers
Hello there!

You’ve got a great genealogy blog – Penrose Mornings: Blood Family Blog - and we’ve added it to the list of over 1,300 genealogy blogs at GeneaBloggers (http://www.geneabloggers.com/).

We will announce your blog in our weekly New Genealogy Blogs on Saturday, November 13, 1010. In the meantime, please visit the About (http://www.geneabloggers.com/about/) section at GeneaBloggers to learn how you can display your GeneaBloggers badge on your blog and also how you can participate in activities such as the Daily Blogging Themes.

If you need technical assistance, please check out Bootcamp for GeneaBloggers (http://fbbootcamp.blogspot.com).


Thomas MacEntee
Founder, GeneaBloggers
+1 (773) 661-3080

Saturday, November 6, 2010


While looking for pictures to post for Kemp's 50th birthday today, I found this one.  Here is it the old pole chair that we mourn over today.  I know this is the only photo I have that includes the much loved chair.  Hmmmmm......

Friday, November 5, 2010

Just Some Thoughts

In the fall of 1981, Elizabeth, Judy and I were working with Dad in doing some house cleaning, as we were all attempting to help each other adjust to life without Mother. Tucked back behind the bottles of canned fruit we discovered several quart jars full of coins. As we talked about that amazing find, we came to the conclusion that Mother was never again going to be without the means to take care of their (Mother's and Dad's and family) basic needs. For some reason this little incident keeps coming back to nudge me to share it with other family members with a little thought, from my perspective. And yes, I know the jar in the photo is a pint not a quart.

There are some amazing things we all learned from Mother and Dad, although our education was most often the hands-on type. For me, the standouts are many, but because of the time of year, the political upheaval, friends losing jobs and/or homes, family members struggling to find ways to survive, and people all around who are hurting and passionately looking for something to hold on to, I want to share just a few.

First, we were always taught to respect others, although there were times when it was difficult because there were major disagreements. I truly believe we have all been given a gift to look at our lives and do the best we can, but in that process the respect for others who see it differently is sacred. I can remember Mother's quiet demeanor when things would get just a little out of hand, and I usually knew I had crossed a line that was not appropriate.

Second, we were always taught to realize how blessed we were to always have food (even if it was asparagus), and shelter where we were warm and snug when the Wyoming winds blew. The garden, cellar treasures, and farm animals created a very safe haven for us when others were not quite so fortunate.

Third, there were always the underlying ties of family love, gospel principles, home, and mutual respect, even when everyone's lives went in directions other than the choices our parents hoped for. I will always be grateful for their unconditional love and support.

So, where is this going? I'm not sure, but perhaps this is my ending thought. I don't know how many of you read the Christmas Jars by Jason F. Wright, written in 2005. May I suggest this is a Christmas where it will be good to remember our heritage - and to reach out to others by creating our own Christmas Jar, regardless of what we put in the jar and then finding someone in need to share it with.

We are so blessed, even though times are hard, and to lose ourselves in helping others just might be good medicine. If this sounds preachy, please forgive me. You know how it is when there is something else I should be doing and I don't want to do it.
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