Friday, November 17, 2017

Fun Friday

Ben likes being a veterinarian. 

He takes good care of all my animals.

Some new animals joined our household today.  Ben helped pick them out.

The marble track came out today.

So did some M&Ms.  Ben counted his.

Corinne made corn and black bean soup for lunch today.  It was scrumptious.

Ben was going to help Papa empty the dishwasher, but he got distracted.

He did help Papa mix a new container of Crystal Light.

He is a good helper.

Ben enjoyed one of my puzzles, but just one for today.

Papa taught him the old wheelbarrow trick.  It was new to Ben and loads of fun!

I found some quarters so Ben could enjoy a few games of pinball.  Maybe tomorrow he'll let me take a turn.

The Amazing Ben Returns!

Papa and I picked up a tired little boy from the airport last night.  It didn't help that traffic caused us to be an hour late. Once at the house, Ben was happy to reacquaint himself with my toys.

Papa and Corinne picked up Cafe Rio for dinner.  Thursday is my favorite:  Tamale Day.

I found a new treat for this little boy.  A few adults enjoyed it also.  Ben is going to help me make a lot of treats this coming week.  I can't wait!

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Blast From the Past: Where's Waldo?

I scanned in over one hundred pictures and documents today.  This might be my favorite.

I cropped that photo from this one after locating Ben on the back row.  He was a pretty cute first grader.

Ben had a wonderful childhood, and he has a lot of stories to tell.  I haven't heard the one about the tree.

We all know this story.  Ben's version is much better.  It involves jumping horses and chasing bad guys.  And at the end he will show you the scars from the stitches on his forehead.

I did know about his dog, Boy.

I love this, although I found myself thinking that none of my birthday parties ever made the news.

Can you find Ben in this picture?

Maybe second grade wasn't his favorite.

Ben was a pioneer in receiving the polio vaccine.  Your are probably too young to remember this, but entire families gathered at schools to receive a drop of the live virus in a sugar cube.  That's my memory.  Ben's first experience was different than mine.  He was part of a test, but he later learned he received the placebo.

This is fourth grade.  I love looking at all the dresses and shoes.

Of course, I pride myself on my ability to find Ben.

It feels like a game of "Where's Waldo?"

I'm making it easy for you.

This was harder.  I had to go upstairs to ask Ben for help.  I even gave him a magnifying glass so he could find himself.  Eventually, he did. Top, back left. 
This was a junior high photo.  He became certain once he spotted his friends he was always with.

I scanned in a lot of football pictures today.

He didn't play football so the girls would notice him. He was a purist and loved the sport by itself.  Ben's on the left in this 1963 junior prom photo.

Ben was a tough guy in his youth, but his football days are over.

Again, I not only failed at finding Ben in this picture, but I couldn't even figure out what it was.  In 1965, four days before Ben turned 19, this picture was taken at the Mission Home in Salt Lake city.

Ben had to help me, but he had trouble, too.  He remembered that his companion was tall.  Ben's not short, so he wasn't kidding.  Ben has such a good memory.  He went through the group photo and named all the elders going to Japan.

The enclosed letter, written in Japanese, was from one of Elder Markham's converts. I can't do this story justice.  Please ask Ben about the convert and the theory of relativity.

Ben's best friend, Kelly, not only served with Ben in Japan, but they graduated together.

As I carefully sorted through the photos, I almost felt like I was prying when I saw what Ben had chosen to save in this box.  This is baby Sammie, one week old.

This was 1979, our last Christmas in Baytown.  Please notice Jeff's hand-me-down boots.

Ten years later, Ben was the bishop in our Clear Lake ward.  This was bishop's night at girls camp.

No son was ever better about visiting his widowed mother.  Often he took kids with him, although I'm pretty certain Sammie was a BYU student by this time.  Ben is a man who is quite secure in his masculinity.  Not only does he hold my purse for me without blinking, but apparently he was willing to hold one of his mother's dolls to make her happy.

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Blast from the Past: Papa Ben's Life

I came across a box labeled "Ben's Baby Book."  I decided to go through it today.  I found this picture of Ben heading to Idaho in his 1968 Firebird.  I've heard about this car but I've never seen a picture before.

This was the type of document I expected to find in this box.  Notice those cute feet.  If I can jest a bit, they seem to be normal-sized feet for a baby who was in utero for 11 months.  With a straight face, numerous older relatives in Ben's family have told me this, clearly believing it to be the truth.

I was pleased to find documents for all of Ben's priesthood ordinations.

His high school diploma was in this box.

This picture was taken two months before I met Ben in 1971.  The location was in New Hampshire, where Ben attended a conference on coal related to his major.

I made the effort to zoom in on Ben so you could see why I became so enamored with him.

Six months later Ben finished his masters and took a job at the world's largest refinery, which was in Baytown, Texas, leaving me at BYU.  I thought I'd never see him again.

I cannot emphasize this clearly enough: Ben loved his job.

Ben drove to back Utah to marry me in 1973.  Why does this picture make me laugh? I was pretty young, in every sense of the word.

This scruffy picture was taken at the end of that year.  I was 6 months pregnant.

David was born in early 1974.  I used cloth diapers before they were fashionable.

I know when this picture was taken.  It was late in a February night in 1977 when the dock at the refinery exploded.  Ask Ben about it sometime.  It's a terrible story.

The refinery was very dependent on the dock on the Houston Ship Channel.  A decision needed to be made in the early hours of the fire as to who would supervise the rebuilding of the dock.

Ben received the phone call in the middle of the night.  As he raced out of the house, he said, "I hope I'm home before the baby is born."  Jeff arrived the next month. The dock was finished much later.

In those days, we owned a Polaroid camera.  In all my scanning, I've been pleased to see how well these pictures have held up.

About this time, Ben was called to serve in a stake presidency.  While scanning in this letter, a memory surfaced which I had almost forgotten.  I was interviewed first, where the stake president told me Ben would need to shave off his mustache.  He and I had a serious discussion about that, and I'm not saying I won, but Ben kept his mustache.

I am so happy Ben took a picture of this moment! You can't tell from the picture, but I made my eyelashes from black construction paper. This is the woman who talked President Hall into letting Ben keep his mustache.

I wrote on the photo that Dave and Sam were trying hard to be "real good & quiet" for this picture in front of the Christmas tree.  Then I wrote that Jeff didn't fold his arms, because every time he did, he sat down.

This is a gathering of Spanish Fork High School graduates.  Ben is on the far left.  He has attended a few reunions, but not many, over the years.

I zoomed in again so we can see him better.

I didn't get to all the pictures in this box today, but I was delighted to scan in this one, which was after Baytown, after New Jersey, and back in Clear Lake.  First of all, Tommy is in the tan scout uniform on the right.  My brain went right there--I struggled to put Steve in the label.  My heart made a little flip when I saw my Astrovan in the background.

Often there are many stories behind a photograph. Notice Ben's sun glasses.  This was years before his cornea transplants.  Decades of struggles over his vision evaporated almost overnight.

I knew exactly what this picture was when I saw it.  Suddenly Ben has grey hair. We were living in Virginia just before Ben retired.  Ben has always been a faithful home teacher, and in this picture, he was moments away from baptizing Samuel Vincent, a little boy whose family Ben home taught.

I don't know how many copies of this picture I have scanned in over the years, but lo and behold, here was another copy.  Ben has a wonderful heritage, with a father who passed on his love for vehicles to his son.