Monday, March 8, 2021

Kent Gardiner Stories

My first job
The first job I remember was painting the wooden picket fence between our Isabel house and Mr. Duffy's. It was the fence we fearfully climbed over to retrieve a baseball or basketball. Mr Duffy, a big round older man with gray, thinning hair had a personality like a drill sergeant. To us he was a man to be feared. So when an errant ball hopped the fence the choice we had was either to risk his anger or go without. The latter usually prevailed. The fence went about 75 feet on the south side of our property. Dad mixed up the paint, handed me some paint brushes and left. I started painting under the California sun and soon I was hot and bored. Mother came out with some fruit flavored Popsicle cubes she froze in ice cube treys overnight which helped. I found a long extension cord and plugged in an old radio, and  tuned it into KFWB.  The Bill Ballance Program and fifties rock and roll were perfect to keep my mind occupied.  Bill was irreverent, funny and had a gift for turning a phrase. I continued painting. In the end the white fence gleamed and dad said he was happy with my work. 1957

My First Job-Paper route
My first job was delivering papers for the Glendale News Press.  The route took place after school and included Harvard Av, Isabel Street, Jackson and all the way over to Louise. It also included a business section along busy Glenoaks Avenue which was backed by a large concrete wash. That section consisted of  Realtor and Title offices.  When I arrived home from school I was greeted with a string bound stack of fresh newspapers on our front lawn. I got everything together and began folding and snapping the rubber bands in place to ready the papers for throwing. Once all the papers were in a pile I stuffed the papers into two canvas bags and hefted the them in place on my goose neck handle bars. My bike was a sturdy red Schwinn with fat tires. Some of the Glenoaks businesses liked their papers delivered inside and a few customers wanted to have their papers "porched."
For me it was a race against the clock. I wanted to be fast. In fact I got pretty good at throwing the papers although occasionally I missed and the paper ended up in a bush or on a roof or out of reach.  Sometimes when that happened I got a call from the newspaper office and had to go back and re-deliver the paper.  I "collected" in the evenings.  Collecting involved handing the customers their amount due clearly printed on a stub. People usually fumbled around for the 5 or 6 dollars. Some tipped me for my service and when I got home I carefully counted my money  with a broad smile on my face. It was usually dark when I finished.

In 1959 we moved to 1366 Cleveland Road and I got another paper route for the "News Press". This time my route was five or six streets just west of Mark Keppel Elementary School. Most people were grateful to have their papers delivered. Sometimes when I collected a person opened their door and the heat and smell of their home or apartment just about knocked me over. When I was done I washed the newsprint off my hands, gathered up my rubber bands and stored my bike. One time I took a bag of rubber bands and made a ball about 8 inches in diameter. When you threw that ball at the ground it took off like a jet. 1958-1963

Gayle Goes to Kindergarten

Kent: My sister Gayle was born seven years after me in 1953. In June 1959 we moved into our new home at 1366 Cleveland Road and Gayle who was 5 was ready to start kindergarten. Because of her December birthday she was the oldest in her class. She attended Mark Kepple Elementary School which was half a mile from our home. In Gayle's words, "Because of where my birthday fell I attended Mark Keppel. The reason I had to walk home alone was because I was on a different schedule from everyone else." On the first day of school I was concerned Gayle would get lost on her way home. So I got a piece of chalk and drew a line on the sidewalk from the school to our home. Gayle still remembers following the line.

Gayle: I vividly remember being scared to start kindergarten. We had not lived at 1366 Cleveland Rd. very long and as a child I was quite convinced I would never be able to find my way home from school. All our schools were in the same place so we all walked to school together. I had half day kindergarten and came home before lunch. Mother had no car and two other children at home. Kent showed me great compassion and caring by riding his bike to Mark Keppel [1/2 mile away] and drawing a chalk line from the school to our house. When school let out that first day I remember following the chalk line all the way home. 


1958 LtR Gayle,Elaine, Jeff, Santa Monica Beach,  CA

Kent: Another time we were at the beach and Gayle remembers a wave upending her. In her words, "I remember there was a storm at sea and the waves were particularly high and I was literally pinned on the bottom under the water." From somewhere above she felt a hand reaching down pulling her to the surface. That was me. It is nice to be remembered for something good you have done. Summer, Spring, 1959

Gayle: Kent must have been very protective of me. I remember swimming at the beach. A huge wave came right over the top of all of us. I was little at the time. I can still remember what it felt like to be totally out of control under the water, hitting the sandy bottom and being tossed around. I felt like I was going to drown! A hand reached down and grabbed me and pulled me to the surface. It was Kent! Thanks Kent!!  Gayle Reese, written June 2001

Lauten's Coffee Shop since 1941
In 1962 I had a friend named Paul Lauten who lived across the street. We spent a lot of time together messing around, poll vaulting in his back yard, flipping bottle caps across the street and making blow guns that could pierce an orange. His father, George Lauten, ran a Coffee Shop at 4441 San Fernando road near Chevy Chase Drive in Glendale. Paul worked with his father and one day invited me to join him as a dishwasher at Lauten's. The work was sweaty but it was fun doing something besides throwing papers. There was Mexican dishwasher who we both liked named Manuel. He bused the dishes and brought them back to me in grey treys so I could place them in the dishwasher and stacked them in clean piles. I learned a few Spanish words. Manuel called me Kan-da-lan-e-o.  That was his translation for the name Kent. The term stuck with me and I have used it off and on since then. We worked hard. The pay was good. Eventually I moved up to be a cook. I had seen Paul work at the grill and soon learned how to do eggs over easy, crispy hash browns, veal cutlets, top sirloin and other related dishes. Two older guys came in nightly. They always ordered veal and tipped well. The waitresses liked them and they were cheerful and friendly. One time I overcooked two large top sirloin steaks. I felt terrible. It was difficult judging medium rare vs medium well. During this time I experimented with smoking. I never fully inhaled but did so more as a joke. One day Richard Pettit came in for dinner. He saw me through the window that separated the grill from the fountain area where the waitresses walked back and forth. Richard sat eating his meal and I appeared at the window and exhaled smoke out my nostrils. He had the most shocked look on his face. As I looked back on this event it was pretty immature but I can still see the look on his face. Smoking didn't last long and looking back it was pretty stupid. Glendale, 1963-1965

Van de Kamp Bakery   
Before leaving for my mission in October 1965, I worked at the Van de Kamp Bakery in Los Angeles at 2930 Fletcher Dr. It is located where the Glendale Freeway intersects the 5 Freeway. I was a cook because of my experience at Lauten's Restaurant. It was basically fast food preparation. I worked that summer and on August 11, 1965 Marquette Frye, a young African American motorist, was pulled over and arrested by Lee W. Minikus, a white California Highway Patrolman, for suspicion of driving while intoxicated. Chaos resulted. The Watts Riot, which raged for six days and resulted in more than forty million dollars worth of property damage, was both the largest and costliest urban rebellion of the Civil Rights era. We, in the restaurant, were concerned about rioting reaching our doors but it never happened and we continued to serve burgers, ice tea and bakery goods until I left on my mission. Los Angeles 1965
Dating Sherry Cornwell by Kent Gardiner
Growing up I was painfully shy. There were always awkward moments at lunch and snack in high school when my friends were not around and I didn't know who to eat with or talk to. When I was a junior going to Hubert Hoover High School in Glendale I was feeling this when a pretty girl came up to me and offered me a doughnut. We struck up a conversation and from that time on for the next few years we were inseparable. Sherry was a convert to the church. Her mother worked in an office and her father was a milkman who did deliveries to homes and businesses. I walked her home daily from High School which wasn't hard because she lived just above the school on Hillcrest about four or five houses from the Hoover High track. We went to Prom in my dad's 1954 Ford Station Wagon. It was hard being separated when I went away to school at BYU in 1964. Sherry wrote to me my entire mission and we dated after my mission. Finally it was time to decide to get married or move on. I decided I was not mature enough and we separated. She married John Scott and they have 6 children. John serves in the Temple in St. George. Cheryl is a realtor at Red Rock Realty, St. George. She tells me all her children are doing well and life is good. She still keeps track of old Glendale friends. It is funny how you can intensely love someone in your youth and years later you hope and pray they are doing well. Now at 75 I look back on my life and realize that much of the love I have for my two wives was actually taught to me by a sweet girl who took the time to notice me in High School. Glendale 1963-1968

High School Sweetheart by Sherry Cornwell
My High School sweetheart was Kent Gardiner.  He was a handsome, fun loving, adventuresome guy, with a great deal of style and charisma.  I met him at an LDS dance in La Canada with some of my girlfriends where he was also there with his buddies.  I fell head over heels in love with him.  My senior year at Herbert Hoover High School was an exciting time because I had a great boyfriend and we did tons of fabulous things.  We went to the Draft Dance ( a girl ask guy dance) many football and basketball games, stake dances, numerous trips to Bob's Big Boy.
The Senior Prom was hoot in  a half because we went together in his Dad's station wagon and I remember cruising down Wilshire Blvd. feeling so grown up and was delirious with happiness and life was just perfect.  Then at the end of the school year we went to Disneyland for grad night where we boarded a big yellow school bus as a senior class and were locked in the park until way early in the morning with the rest of our classmates,,,,,that was a blast!  Later that year,  I attended Glendale College and then transferred to BYU in the spring so I could attend school and be with Kent. He got his LDS mission call and he was sent to the British South Mission oddly enough in the area where my ancestors had lived before.  
I wrote him letters everyday and was really upset if my mailman didn't bring me letters every day.(lol)  I was totally smitten. He came home from his mission and continued his schooling at BYU. I was blessed to have a this wonderful cherished person in my life. Now at almost 75, I look back at my life and just smile.  These were good times!!!!!!

Ralph's Stock Clerk
After my mission I crossed a picket line at Ralph's Grocery Store. My job was to stack the shelves. At the time I was driving a brown 55 Chevy. One day I parked in a distant part of the parking lot and walked to the far end of the lot to Ralph's. When I got off work I walked back to my car and found sugar all around the spout where you put gas into the car. I knew what this meant. So I called my dad who helped me tow the car home and I pulled the tank, cleaned it out and put it back together; all while not starting the engine. Fortunately it ran. Fall, 1967
After my mission I also worked the Christmas rush at Penny's department store in Glendale on Brand Boulevard. I was assigned the shirt section which was toward the front of the store. It was amazing how two or three customers can destroy a store display in minutes. I spent a lot of time organizing the stock, putting shirts in the right section or answering questions from customers. There is something calming about working in a retail setting. They didn't play music back then although you could hear Christmas sounds coming from the other businesses in the area. After Christmas I got a job at a clothing store on Brand. The job didn't last very long because I didn't fit in with the other clerks who were oriented differently than I was. Then I got a job at a "Dollar Haircuts" place, also on Brand. My job was to take the money and sweep up the hair. The barbers could do many haircuts an hour and since they only charged a dollar it appeared to me to make good business sense. Christmas, Spring, 1967
For a short period of time I worked as a professional pallbearer for Forrest Lawn, Hollywood Hills. My job was to greet guests and if they didn't have family members to lift the coffin I was the man. I also helped arrange the family floral bouquets. From the perspective of the mourners I was a somber cemetery employee dressed in a dark blue suit that looked like it belonged in a mortuary but behind the scenes there was a group of us having a good time. There were lots of jokes about life and death. Sometimes it was hard to keep a straight face because your co-employee was making a face. 1968

My love affair with MG's 
When I was in High School during my junior year Bud Leeper from the ward came by each morning in his 1958 MG Magnette to pick me up for Seminary. The car was black, no power but totally beautiful. It had the lines of a Jaguar sedan. After I got back from my mission I bought a brown 1955 Chevy with black tuck-and-roll upholstery and a Hurst four on the floor shifter. I added some lifters to raise the car a  bit and drove it a couple of years. Then I bought Bud Leeper's MG Magnette. I redid the interior with red naugahyde and cleaned it up. I drove it to BYU and back a number of times and loved the car. The grill was beautiful and once I placed a Dr. Pepper can on the grill and took a photo of it. My friend/mission buddy Richard Watson loved the photo.

Once Richard and I decided to drive to Arizona to visit Bob Layton. When we were 20 miles south of Provo a part of the road slowly declines. At the bottom of the hill a cop pulled us over. I couldn't figure out why because the car topped out at about 65. When the officer told us he was pulling us over for speeding Richard fell over himself laughing. He thought the car was gutless and we laughed all the way to Arizona.

About 1970 I was in my last year at BYU. One night I drove to Salt Lake City which was about 40 miles away. On the way back the rods started knocking. By the time I got home they were making a huge racket which could be heard for blocks and my temperature gauge topped out. I knew the engine was cooked. Later I took it home to California where I stored it at my parents house for a year or two. Finally dad said it needed to go and I gave it to Wayne LeCheminant who later gave it to his mother.  I wish I had the car today because it was unique, beautiful, classic but totally gutless. That car began my love affair with MG's. 1963-1970
1954 Ford Station Wagon
In 1954 my father purchased a new green 1954 Ford station wagon. It had plenty of room so the next summer the family took our first trip to Malta, Idaho, where dad's parents lived. We had a great time and took many trips in that car. After seven years of heavy use dad painted the Ford white with red trim around the windows. Sometime in the 1960s the Ford threw a main bearing and dad and 12 year old Mark rebuilt the engine. It threw a main bearing again and this time dad figured out that the bearing "spun" because the tab to hold it in place was etched into the block in the wrong place. Dad fixed it and the car went for many years. 

I learned to drive in the old Ford. It had "three on a tree," meaning you shifted manually from the steering column.  I assume most of my siblings learned in that car too. At first, shifting was rough and dad winced as I tried to smoothly take off from a stop. But dad was patient and I finally learned. It's something you don't forget. 1954-1962

Delivering phone books
One time I got a job delivering phone books. I drove to the warehouse and loaded as many phone books as I could into the Ford. There were books all the way to the ceiling. Then I drove around Glendale delivering the heavy soft covered books. My route included many apartment buildings and I hefted an armload of books over lawns and up apartment stairs. I had good energy and enjoyed the work. 1967 
 Mark gets a car
When my brother was 15, in 1965 dad thought he needed a little direction. At the same time a friend at dad's work had a crashed green 1955 Ford with a blown engine. He offered it to dad for a dollar. Dad brought it home and he and Mark rebuilt the engine and fixed the dent and interior. They used Myjoiner Brothers in Burbank to do the machine work on the engine. Mark found some seats at a junk yard and the car was ready to drive. It was a 2 door station wagon with a front and back seat and lots of room behind the seats to haul stuff. The car sat at a bit of an angle with the back slightly raised. Mark and dad painted the car red in the back yard and it looked good.

When Mark was 15 and 1/2 he bought a Honda 50 from a kid in a gas station. Mark handed him the money and said, "I don't know how to shift it, can you give me a short lesson?" The young man did and Mark drove the Honda 50 all the way home.

One time while driving the Ford Mark heard a clunking sound coming from the rear of the car. He discovered a bolt had dislodged from the spider gear. He fixed it. The red Ford had 3 on the tree and a six cylinder engine. One day the shifting linkage broke. Mark was friends with Charles Brown who was going to throw away some extra linkage he had. He gave the linkage to Mark who promptly used the it to move the shifter to the floor. 

In 1969 Mark went on a church mission to the Alberta Canadian Mission. During the two years dad took care of Marks's car and on his return he had wheels. 1965-1969

My second MG
In 1972 while I was teaching in Glendora I bought a yellow 1967 MGB-GT. The car was super cute with wire wheels, a good interior and was fun to drive. One day I drove to Highland Park to a somewhat tough area to pick up a girl on a date. As he drove into the neighborhood I suddenly saw bright flashing lights in his rear view mirror. The policeman pulled me over and asked what I was doing. He said, "We don't often see this type of car in this neighborhood." I laughed.

Around the same time I decided I needed more room to move school materials and car parts and traded my yellow MGB-GT for Mark's 1955 Ford. Mark drove the MG until he got married when it became impractical to own it. Both Mark and I have dreamed of owing that little car over the years.  Mark liked everything about it except the spoke wheels which needed bimonthly tension adjustment.

In 1973 Mark and I got interested in old MG's and Mark purchased a 1952 MG-TD that was junk with the idea of restoring it. Later they found another TD which had all the parts and a rebuilt engine. They decided to restore it. They did most of the work at dad's house in Glendale. It was quite a day when they hung all the fenders on the clothes line and spray painted multiple coats of paint, sanding between coats and taking great care to work with as much perfection as possible considering we were outside in a dusty back yard. When the car was put together it was a thing of beauty. The brown body, black fenders and black interior gleamed. We tossed a cloth across the hood and the cloth slid across the paint like it was on glass.

Once Kent drove the TD from Glendora through Pasadena to Glendale the night before the Rose Parade. People holding their places for the Parade gave loud shouts of approval to the car.  A family I home taught made me a black felt cap which looked pretty cool with the car. 1972-1974

One day while teaching in Glendora in the summer of 1973 I drove to church in the 1955 Ford. After teaching the 14 year-olds he walked out to the lobby and saw a very pretty, young woman on the phone. She had long luxurious hair and I overheard her asking for her brother to pick her up from a Laurel Conference. He told her it would be a while. So I struck up a conversation with Suzanne Brown and her friend Melinda Romney. I offered to drive them 20 miles away to their homes and they accepted. I put Melinda in the front seat and Suzanne in the back. Where Suzanne was sitting she could look down through the floorboards and see the street below. In 1974 I sold both cars and bought a 1972 MBG-GT.

In the summer of 1974  Suzanne and I dated in the Ford. We went to the Hollywood Bowl, dinner downtown LA and to a Dodger game. At the end of the year they got married Suzanne never let me forget I put her in the back seat. She probably didn't realize that I thought she was too beautiful and too young to ride in front with him. 1973-1974

Visiting my sister
During the 70's and 80's Suzanne and I took a short vacations to San Diego to visit their family and see the sights.  Their house and garage was very organized and inspired us to do the same. At night we put the kids down and we slept in Ron and Sandy's bed. It was very comfortable and we loved the privacy. Suzanne: "Isn't it nice of Ron and Sandy to give up their bed for us? How kind they are!" Over the years I wondered why they did that. So I asked. 
Sandy: "In 1972 Ron’s parents moved to Boulder City, Nevada. They bought a trailer because homes were not available. They had two bedrooms and their son Jerry was in one and they had the other. They also had a motor home. When we visited they gave us their bedroom and they slept in their motor home.  We didn’t have a guest bedroom in San Diego so we gave you our bed with the master bath and we slept on the hide-a-bed in our family room."

Leland Davis
In the early 2000s a man moved into our ward who looked like a "character." He had a large "Santa Claus" beard, walked rather stiffly and had a bright gleam to his eyes. So I asked to be his home teacher.  The first month Brett and I went to visit him I told him I would visit him every month.  He said, "No you won't"  I said, "Oh, yes I will." He told me that for the last twenty years which he had home teachers he was never visited monthly and he doubted I would be any different. From that day on I visited him once a month and often more.  Brett and Ryan M came along as my companion and they enjoyed our chatting as much as I did.  When we visited Leland he asked what our favorite soda was and dsshed to the garage to get us a frosty can.  When UPS or USPS or workers were on his street, he hunted them down, learned their names and found out what soda they liked.  He loved people and people loved him.

Leland was born 23 May 1935 in 23 May 1935 Kinston, Lenoir, North Carolina and had relatives there he visited during the summer. That included his mother Swannie Belle Humphrey (Davis) who lived to 1999. Swannie was baptized when she was 19. He was proud of his upbringing and his roots in North Carolina. Leland was 11 years older than I.

His father was baptized when he was 9 and was born and died in Deep Run, North Carolina. The family raised tobacco. Leland remembers hanging the unwieldy tobacco leaves out to dry in the dry North Carolina sun.

Leland had a number of collections including a knifes, a Civil War book collection and his prized pocket watch collection which I think was quite valuable. I once found a number of prized Civil War books at a garage sale and donated them to him. A big smile crossed his face as he took the books.

Sometimes I walked out the front door of my house to find strawberries or veggies on the doorstep with a note from Leland. When cherry's were in season he pulled up in front of our house in his vintage VW bug, and off we went to Leona Valley to pick cherries together. We ate and picked cherries until we were sick.

One time he said, "Kent, let's go for lunch at my favorite restaurant in the San Fernando Valley. A few minutes later he appeared in his VW bug, I jumped into the passenger side.Leland had rheumatoid arthritis which made all of his joints stiff. Some of his fingers, teeth and joints were fused. Life had been difficult for him, although he never complained.  When he got into the bug he'd pulled his bottom onto the driver's seat and swung his stiff arthritic legs around, pushing himself into position.  He really wound up that green VW.  On the way he'd tell stories of a legion of squirrels who were bothering his garden. Once he relocated squirrels to the yards of people he didn't like. We laughed over that. In reality he liked everyone.

He talked about how proud he was of his family and in particular of his son, daughter in law, daughter and grandchildren. Leland was an alcoholic. He wasn't proud of how he treated his wives. But that all changed when his son Brandley, died in an unfortunate motorcycle accident after his mission.  Leland said  that the goodness of his son changed him and motivated him to be good enough to be with Brandley in the next life. That may be the reason he served in the LA Temple every Tuesday.  He told me how much Temple service meant to him and after the temple he looked forward to visiting his daughter, son and grandchildren. 

At his funeral I stood next to Terry Young who said, "Kent, Leland Davis was God's gift to me in my old age."  I felt the same way.  The funny thing about that statement is that in spite of his rheumatoid arthritis and the toll alcohol had taken on his body I always viewed him as young, even youthful.  He had an enjoyment of life and a love of people that was infectious.  When you went to a restaurant with him he always knew the names of the waitress and the owner and would introduce them to you as his friends. Leland was my friend. I love Leland and look forward to catching up in the next life.  2002-2012

Around 2014 I took an art class at BYU. After class I walked from the HFAC building to the BYU Art Exhibit and watched a short presentation seating an apple. Then I went out to my car and couldn't find my keys. I looked everywhere, under seats, in my pockets, and in my lunch bag. No keys. I retraced my steps to the Art Museum, no keys. After searching for some time I gave up and called Deborah who had a set of keys. She came about 45 minutes later. While waiting for her I looked beneath the car,  and along my path to the museum. I prayed. No keys. Deborah arrived and wanted to get something to eat so we both drove to the restaurant. It was cold and I wore a coat. We sat and ate. Half way through the meal I looked down at the floor and low and behold: the keys. How they appeared is difficult to know but on the way home I resolved to keep better track of them and we gave a prayer of thanksgiving.

 A child's point of view
At Thanksgiving 2020 the family met in St. George and also visited Arches National Park. Eric had four sets of Pickleball paddles and we enjoyed learning how to play pickleball. We also visited the park.  As we all stood looking at the beautiful arches Dax said, "Grandpa, they look like they will fall on all of us, but I know they won't."

Later when we were all in a small room eating and chatting,  Xavier said, "Gracie is trying to make friends with the old people."

I’ve decided the contention in media is not for me. I'm done with all political posts on Facebook. People either get we are in the last days or they don't. No amount of convincing is going to change a person's mind. So I focus on other things. Saturday night Deborah and I continued our study of The Revelation of John the Apostle. It is a 900 page book by Richard Draper and Michael Rhodes. It is one of the most amazing books I have ever read, period. December 2020

Food Storage
A couple of weeks ago I woke up with the thought of buying food storage for Brett/Ashley for their birthdays. The same day Deborah went to the Sandy Home Storage Center. They told her some items were no longer available however she was able to get many Ashley and Brett said they could use. Previously we heard that there was a problem getting cans to pack food in at Continental Can Company. I worked there one summer on an assembly line. They can make a thousand cans an hour. On Monday the 8th I went to the Lindon Home Storage Center and got some more storage items and afterwards went home, picked up the rest, and made a delivery to Brett. It was great to see him and he seemed most grateful for his new found “insurance. " February 2021

Computer Problems
After backing up about 4gbs of photos, files and videos my dearly beloved iMac gave out. I spent a lot of time in front of the screen for the last 8 years. Brett helped me make a start up disk on a flash drive and the computer worked, though not well, for the time being until we figured out what to do. 

One day Brett and I went to the Apple store where the young man said they were coming out with a new chip called the M1 which was a large leap forward in terms of processing. Unfortunately the iMac didn't have the chip although the laptops did. He said wait a month or two and the new iMac should be out. After a month of waiting I decided to get the Mac Mini and a large LG monitor. After setting it up and looking at the clarity and resolution I decided the monitor was inferior, returned it and bought a more expensive LG monitor which worked perfectly. After another month Deborah decided she wanted to quit work and needed a computer. We talked laptops but they were expemsive and the batteries have a limited life. Deborah suggested we look at KSL Classifieds. We found a two year old iMac for $700. It has 4k resolution and the young couple who owned it said they needed the money for their new home and that the computer was in great condition. We drove to Payson, bought the compluter and now we are the happy owners of two Apple computers. 

 In April the new iMac's came out. They have a cheesy white band around the screen and come in pastel colors. They still have the band at the bottom of the screen. 

Babysitting Grandchildren
Tuesday we watched Crew and Dax. This is always the highlight of our week. I wanted to show Dax where our neighbor is adding a cement pad next to his driveway but he was missing a coat. So I put him in my old sweatshirt and we went and had a look. He looked pretty cute with my sweatshirt down to his ankles and rolled up sleeves. Crew had a very messy diaper and we gave the boys a bath which they loved. Crew took a good nap. When Ashley leaves Dax asks Deborah to open the back sliding glass door and wave to him. This day Deborah said she could hear Dax yell from the car, “Goodbye-Grandma!, Love you” That made her day. February 2021
Visit from my Sister
From Tuesday night to Thursday Ron and Sandy came to visit. Ron’s vision is not good so he is selling the plane he built. Because of his vision problems they took the California Zephyr  from just outside Chicago to Provo. Round trip was $1200. They got all meals and a cozy sleeping compartment. They loved the majestic scenery across America. Sandy and I worked on a JHG timeline, talked about lots of different topics and played Pickleball on our local court. Ron asked to see my solar ovens and train layout. Ron is an engineer who has many skills most people never even dream of. He told me he is working on a high tech solar oven which will automatically track the sun. It will  be powered by a solar panel. He is also interested in an HO scale car system that uses a regular plastic/metal HO scale cars. One adds magnets to the bottom of the car and it runs on a bed of coils. It sounds really cool. February 2021

On Wednesday the 10th I went in to see Dr Platt to see if I have cancer of the prostate. Over the last year my PSA went from 3.8 to 6.2 in six months. Dr Sharp suggested I go to see a Urologist. A week previous Dr. Platt had me lie on my side and he shot my prostate 13 times. Each shot removed a bit of tissue which was analyzed. When he said, “Just two more.” I breathed a sigh of relief. There were three possible outcomes: cancer, enlarged prostate due to infection or nothing going on here. My test came out clean and he suggested no further testing. I was so happy I went across the street and found 6 classical CD’s at Deseret Industries Thrift Store and as I walked to the check out counter, I realized I wasn’t wearing a mask.  February 10, 2021

On Friday I went to Eagle Vision for an eye exam. Dr Peterson did many tests. I have been concerned about macular degeneration because uncle Frank and my dad suffered from it. They took a photograph of my retina. It is interesting seeing the reddish flesh interior of your own retina. Dr Peterson said my optic nerve looks great and so does my retina other than a floater or two which I don’t even notice. That was a relief. My distance vision is still ok and I already  have prescription glasses for distance. My left eye is a little weaker than my right for close up vision. I ordered some high tech reading/computer glasses with special coating for glare and UV. I was going to get titanium because I hate messing with broken frames but decided on “plastic” instead. A young woman in the office showed me her Silhouette glasses and said she has had them for 5 years and another pair for 10 years. She even took them off, popped out a lens and bent the frames which all popped right back into shape. The glasses will be made in California and should be ready in a couple of weeks. The frames are a muted black and have rounded eye openings. I prefer large lenses for reading and thought  frameless with titanium temples looked interesting. February 2021

Favorite Uncle
I went to visit Frank. His vision is not good so he uses a magnifier in order to see the computer screen but recently his computer broke. He took it in to Apple who wants $700 to fix his charging port. I asked him what his charging port looked like the night before my visit and he said bits of metal are falling out. So I figured his computer was junk. He bought a refurbished Apple laptop but can’t get it to work. He sounded frustrated so I drove to Provo. I thought a simple solution to his problem could be an iPad. When I got there he had an iPad on the counter and said neither he or Lillian used it. So we found his Apple ID/password and his G-mail ID/password and got both his new laptop and his iPad working. Before I left I asked to have a look at his old computer. He said he was still thinking of having it fixed because it is frustrating moving to a new device when he knows his older Apple laptop so well. I picked up his old laptop and looked into the charging port. Something was in there. I poked around and found a staple lodged in the magnetic charging port. I removed it, plugged in his charger and voila: it works perfectly. Problem solved. Frank was beside himself with gratitude. It can be tough getting old. February 2021

Apple iMac
At the end of February I decided to back up all of my computer files. This amounted to about 1.5 TB of photos, 1 TB of videos and .5 TB of documents. My last step was to use Time machine to back up a few items left on the Mac. I walked out of the room, returned and the computer had crashed. I worked for a few days trying to resurrect it. I tried "Restore" and the "Terminal." No luck. Finally Brett came over and formatted a flash drive, put Catalina on it and voila, it works. We will purchase a new Mac when the new Apple M1 chip comes out. Until then we are depending on a little flash drive and a bit of good luck. March 2021

On December 1, 1969, the Selective Service System of the United States conducted two lotteries to determine the order of call to military service in the Vietnam War for men born from January 1, 1944 to December 31, 1950. These lotteries occurred during a period of conscription in the United States that lasted from 1947 to 1973. It was the first time a lottery system had been used to select men for military service since 1942. I was number 334 and thankfully did not serve in that useless war. 

Since 2001 we have been at war with Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria in the middle east. All these wars are money makers for the Military Industrial Complex and all totally un-needed. 9/11, from my point of view, was engineered by people in the US government and used as a pretext for the last 20 years of war with no benefit to anyone. The following is from an article on the BBC website. published March 7, 2021

1. When Saddam Hussein invaded the oil-rich emirate of Kuwait in August 1990, President George HW Bush snarled: "This will not stand." The Kuwaiti government-in-exile promptly hired a US public relations firm, Hill & Knowlton, whose Washington DC office was run by Bush's former chief of staff. The PR firm coached a purported witness, introduced as a 15-year-old girl called "Nayirah", to tearfully tell US congressmen in October 1990 that Iraqi soldiers had entered a hospital in Kuwait, removed babies from incubators and left them to die on the cold floor. Nayirah, reporters were assured, was using an assumed name for fear of reprisals against her family back home.

Only after the war would it emerge she was the daughter of Kuwait's ambassador to the US. And her story was completely baseless, as John MacArthur details in his book, Second Front, Censorship and Propaganda in the 1991 Gulf War.

Bush is recorded as having publicly touted this tall tale at least six times as he blew the bugle of war. "Babies pulled from incubators and scattered like firewood across the floor," the president said on one occasion during a speech to US troops in Saudi Arabia. The irony is that it seems babies actually did perish after being removed from incubators during Gulf War One. Only it reportedly happened in a massive US-led allied air raid.

2. He cites deceptive statements by Bush's son, President George W Bush, as he sold a sequel war on Iraq to the US public.

These included downplaying intelligence doubts that Iraqi President Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction, and implying he might even have a nuclear weapon, and asserting he was an ally of al-Qaeda.

Prof Ginsberg says "whoppers" that lead to military action are the most harmful of all, and that Trump is not as blame-worthy as some of his predecessors in this respect.

3. JFK's brother, Robert Kennedy, once said of LBJ: "He just lies continually about everything. He lies even when he doesn't have to lie.

Johnson's falsehoods on the Vietnam War included using an August 1964 naval attack that never happened in the Gulf of Tonkin to dramatically escalate the conflict.

"We are not about to send American boys nine or 10 thousand miles away from home to do what Asian boys ought to be doing for themselves," he told voters two months later in Akron, Ohio.

After being elected, LBJ quietly sent the first US combat forces to the jungles and rice paddies of the war zone, eventually deploying more than half a million troops.

Johnson's constant dissembling about this foreign policy disaster envenomed (poisoned) American political life and led journalists to coin a euphemistic term about his administration: the credibility gap.

It's all a rueful reminder of the blessing carved into the mantel of the White House State Dining Room:

"May none but Honest and Wise Men ever rule under This Roof."

I like this quote: H.L. Mencken (1880-1956) once said, "The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed - and hence clamorous to be led to safety - by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary."   H.L. Mencken, In Defense of Women

Expressing Love
I grew up in a family with lots of love but it wasn't expressed in so many words. My mother died when I was 14 which ended any maternal expressions of love. Dad grew up without much love from his own rough frontier father and at the time it wasn't considered manly to express sentiments such as this. 
When I married Suzanne in 1974 things changed. Suzanne and I expressed lots of love for each other. It was common in her family to say the words, "I love you."  We expressed daily love for our children which represented the caring and concern we felt for each of them and we expressed love for her parents. 
According to my brother Mark, "loving others is one of the more difficult commandments. Our father did love each of us but he was not affectionate nor did he express love very often. The great blessing of our father was his training and his example. We are blessed to have the parents we did."

According to Christ we live in an age when "the love of many will wax cold."  Matthew 24:12. Today we see people being unfriended  because of their political views. We also see families where members don't love and respect each other

One of the basic needs we all have is to love and be loved by others. What does that mean? Love has been described as the care and concern for others. It is what God is all about. His love for us is unconditional and lasts forever. That doesn't mean he will ignore misbehavior. We will have to pay for our own sins unless we take advantage of the atonement and let Christ suffer for things we have done wrong. But Heavenly Father's love is eternal and he stands with open arms because he is our father and loves us perfectly.

We were watching our grandsons recently and Deborah asked, "Kent, it is ok if we have a f-i-r-e in the backyard. I said, "No it is too windy." A few minutes our 4 year old grandson asks, "Grandma, what does F-i-r-e spell

Fiber and Four Year Olds
March 2, Our four year old was eating an Ausiebite this morning and asked,  "Grandma, how much fiber does an Ausiebite have?

Leopard Print Boots
2021 Recently I was sitting at the computer and Deborah popped in with a wild pair of leopard print boots on and asked, "Do you think it is okay to wear these to the temple?" I immediately said, "Sure, they look good." Deborah had a shocked look on her face as if to say she wasn't expecting that response. As it turns out she has owed these for quite a while but didn't think I would approve. She hid them in the car and when she got to work she changed into them. One day I came in to ask for her keys so I could wash her car. She told me she hid her feet behind the counter so she wouldn't be found out. Now she wears them all the time. They look really good. 

Deborah worked at Osmond with girl named Emily. Her mother gave her up for adoption but took a picture of her and later when the mother had her own family they never forgot Emily because they had a picture. This Christmas her sibblings wanted to find Emily as a Christmas present for their mother. They all did an Ancestry DNA test and found Emily. This Christmas Emily is meeting her mother and siblings for the first time and she wants to find out why she was adopted. The mother lives in Idaho and Emly is traveling to Idaho to be with her biological mother. Emily said that her mother has been looking for her for many years, which is why the siblings took the DNA test. How cool is that?

Jean DaBell
Jean DaBell went in for a gallbladder operation and when they opened her up they found she was filled with colon cancer. Over a period of three months she tried various cures with to no avail. She was in tremendous pain. Once Ashley visited her at the Huntsman Cancer Institute in SLC. She got there after hours but went in anyway. They talked and laughed and had a wonderful time. Finally Ashley said, "Are you in pain?" Jean said yes, but I can't call for help because if they come in here they will see you and kick you out. Ashley had a special relationship with Jean. Last Sunday the 12th of December 2012 Jean, bedridden, in pain and tired started to fade. Her exhausted husband slept next to her and her daughters and Ashley woke Jean up every hour to administer pain meds. Late in the evening Jean took her last breath with Ashley watching. Dan, her husband slept. The daughters asked if they should just let Dan sleep. Ashley said, "No, we don't want him to wake up by himself to a dead Jean." So they woke Dan and told them she had just passed away. One of the daughters turned to Ashley and said, "You seem comfortable with death." This is the third person Ashley was with as they passed. 

Money and Marriage
Andrew dated a girl for two years and wanted to marry her. Her father was a Cardiologists and didn't approve of Andrew because he didn't make enough money. Toward the end of the three years Andrew spoke in private to the girl's parents, asking again and again for her hand in marriage. He told them he would be true and faithful to their daughter and take good care of her and love her. They looked at him and said, "There are more important things than the church." He walked out never to return. Eventually he married Ashley and they have three children. Today the girl is unmarried. 

                                                                                                                       Slides, 2 Sept 2022

A young woman, maybe in her mid-twenties or early-thirties, came to the library with many boxes of slides to digitize.  She was quite angry.  We started copying the slides, and in doing so we began to visit together.  I found the reason for her anger.  Her grandfather, who lived in Pleasant Grove, had recently passed away.  That day, she had driven from her home in Heber City just to be close to her deceased grandfather in his home.  When she got there, her aunts were there cleaning his home in preparation that it might be sold.  As she went in, she found ALL of his pictures, slides, documents, journals, audio cassettes, everything in the TRASH!  She told her aunts that if they didn’t care about the documents, she wanted them.  She gathered all of the items from the trash and then set about trying to digitize everything.  That morning she copied and placed on a flash drive close to a thousand slides.  She will need to come back to scan all of the other things.  The miracle to preserve all of the documentation of this man’s life which would have been lost and forgotten.  Among the slides were his mission photographs, photographs of the many trips he had taken both with family and trips as part of his work   The most valuable, were the many pictures of his family-- children and grandchildren from babies through their school years and marriages.  As we witnessed together this great miracle, her heart was softened, and though it demanded much of her personal time, she had been and was continuing to be an instrument in preserving the history of her grandfather. I was blessed to see this miracle!


DI  The other miracle that I wanted to relate, took place in mid-August.  A man and his wife came with boxes and boxes of slides and photographs even 8 mil film reels.  As I listened to their story, I learned and testified to them that what had happened was truly a miracle!  Both the husband and his wife had been part of sad divorces many years previously.   The man’s had been a very bitter divorce and his ex-wife in her anger, not only tried to turn the children against him, but refused to let him have any of the photographs, his personal journals, or papers.  After many years, the bitterness persisted.  The man and wife I worked with had been married fifteen years. Because of her kind nature, the now adult children had adopted this woman as their mother.  Eventually, the ex-wife discarded several items to Deseret Industries including old journals and photos. Unbeknown to his biological mother, one of her sons had become employed at the DI.  One morning as this young man was working, his assignment was to decide what should be done with many items that had been donated for discard or recycling.  He came across some things that caught his interest!  He called his “adopted” mom on the telephone and said, I thought you might like to look at some of the things that came to the DI today.  When his father and she got there, they found his journals and the many, many pictures and slides even 8mm film reels that documented his mission and the lives of his children. Both wept!  Sister Clarnell Harper