Friday, February 19, 2016

083 Tuesday to Tuesday (Nov. 18-24, 2015)

I love this time of the year. People seem to pick up and move mountains in all they want to do and in all they achieve. Yet, there is an anxiousness over us all as we try to do so much that we don’t always have the time to enjoy it. Over the years, I’ve learned that we put too much time in trying to find “things” for each other. When the children were small, it was especially hard because I wanted them to have more than I had when a child. We didn’t have the money to buy lots of things, but I bought way too many of them anyway. Afterwards, I remember thinking that so much of it they didn’t really appreciate or enjoy. They looked at it when unwrapped, and it went into the pile without ever being looked at again. Sometimes those gifts were given just because they were something that was cheap but would add to the pile and make it seem like they had more. WOW, when I let myself reflect on past Christmas or even birthday presents, I’m ashamed that I put so much stock in them.

When I was in the 5th grade, I remember my birthday so clearly. There was no cake or celebration, it was just another day. Mom had gone to the store that day and had bought some oatmeal. We were unpacking the groceries, and I got hold of the oatmeal first. Back then they packed little juice cups (cut glass with a handle) in the box. I was so excited and asked mom if I could have the cup for my birthday. It is hard to express how much that cup meant to me. It was mine! I do remember walking down the road and thinking about how proud I was to have a little cup like that. If you asked me today, I have no idea what happened to it or even if I used it. My memory of the past is fading. I do remember thinking that it was a great birthday. (I went looking for a picture of the cup and found this one. My cup was just like this. Would you believe there is big business to be found in the dishes that came from oatmeal?)

Back in my day (I think it has changed in today’s time), being poor was part of many of our lives. If your dad had a good job (most of them were manufacturing), you made ends meet. Daddy was drinking at this time in our lives, and he had trouble keeping good jobs. Mom did not work, and there were seven kids to provide for in the home. We lived in a two-story home in Friendship, Virginia. It had no indoor bathroom, but there was a two-seater that met our needs. We had a garden, and we lived out of the garden. In the kitchen, the walls needed to be painted or wallpapered. We had no money, and the man who owned the house (his family, the Frye’s) lived right behind us in a humongous home – I babysat for their kids whenever possible. Mr. Frye had a skating rink that if we had $0.50 we could ride a bus and go skating every Thursday night – not able to afford that often). Mrs. Frye was a school teacher. It was Mr. Frye’s brother who owned our house. Anyway, we had no money to wallpaper this house, and we weren’t about to fix it up for someone who didn’t care enough to provide the supplies. So, mom used newspapers to cover the wall. When we had meals together, we played a game. “I see a race car or an article about a car race.” Whoever found the article first got to be the next one to find something on the wall. How funny that sounds now, but then, it was entertainment for us. That old house has been torn down now. I went to Liberty Hall High School while we lived there. Our next door neighbors were the Mountains. I’ve since found out that they are related to us. One time I was communicating with a cousin on Ancestry, and I found out that she was kin to the Mountains and had visited that home when we lived there. She remembered meeting the kids (us)  that lived in that old house. Family history is a joyous work.
Liberty Hall was the school I attended when I was in 6th-7th grades. Now it is abandoned and used to store hay.

Liberty Hall was quite a school in its day. Its here that I would play ball to my hearts content. I had to be captain at all times, and I pushed those boys to play hard. I was the pitcher, and I loved nothing more than striking out the boys (or anyone else who had the audacity to oppose me.) It was here that I broke up with my long-time boyfriend because of jealousy, but it turned out to be a good thing. It was here that I was in a beauty contest and was told by one of the judges that I would have won (stop laughing) if only I hadn't been chewing gum on stage. Of course I let it go to my head and was really resentful of the girl that won. A couple days later I was in the library with a friend and another girl came in that I had seen, but I didn't know her very well. She brought up the contest, and I spouted off about how the girl that won didn't deserve it. My friend kicked me under the table, and the other girl left. My friend then informed me that the girl was the sister to the one that won. Man, it's times like these that make me realize how immature and in need of good feelings I was. Back then, my hair was absolutely the bomb. It was long, and it was kinky. To say that it sprouted everywhere would be an under-statement. I also have to admit that I couldn't control it, and I didn't much care. If I could put it in a ponytail, I did. I think that's why my hair is so thin today. I digress from what I was going to say. My hair was so unmanageable that the mean boys in class nicknamed me "Bush."  Harsh! I vowed to put them down every chance I could. Anyway, I was such a tomboy, and I could outrun, outbat, outpitch (and out anything else I can think of) those boys.

While I'm on Liberty Hall, we were in class one day when the principal came to the door and told us that President Kennedy had been shot. I had a friend in the class, Peggy Williams, who did some really good impersonations of John F. Kennedy. When we got the message, she just burst out crying. I remember standing with her at the open window (if you look at the school, our class was on the right-hand side, second floor, front) and talking about how bad it was. I will provide some examples of this hair but why I couldn't find the really bad ones (I know some of you will wince over these hahahaha).

Anita and Linda, I'm about 3 - notice the curls

My hair looks pretty tame here, about 4

5th Grade, 10 years old

At least its glossy and shiny

At the bottom of this photo it says, "Defective" - wonder if someone was trying to tell me something

Sorry, if I bore any of you with my personal reminisces. I get on a topic and it brings things back to my mind. I think I'll show you some of Craig's pictures over time.
Craig and dad, Ken, 1948-49

Craig and Ken, Christmas Day, 1950

Craig as a Teenager

Craig in College

Craig graduating from Auburn University

Younger but hair still the same.
Craig after we were married


Anyway, back to our lives here in Milwaukee.

On the 18th, we were supposed to go to Salvation Army to pack and ship toys to children who had a parent in prison. Now, that is a sobering thought. As it turned out, we learned that we were not needed because they had done the same work on Monday and had so many volunteers that they had finished it. 

My cousin, Becky Walton Taylor – Uncle Howard’s girl) had a birthday so I sent a birthday wish to her. One thing I found out doing family history is that she had a baby sister who must had died at birth. I never had an idea. Becky never mentioned it, now did my parents. I found out when Becky’s mother passed away and while looking for her obit found a daughter listed who had passed away also. I had put it on my Family Search site and when Anita (my sister) first began her family search site in earnest, the first thing she did was delete the record I had created. When I called her, I asked what she was doing, and she argued that they didn’t have a baby that died. I assured her that it was true, but it was a while before I found that information again. I called Howard Davis (Aunt Sibyl’s son) and asked him if he knew about it. I also asked if he knew where Uncle Howard and Uncle Wallace (daddy’s brothers) were buried. He did, so I asked that if he ever got up that way would he please take pictures for me. He posted them on facebook, and he sent me a picture of Becky’s sister’s, Ruth, tombstone also. How could we have been so ignorant of such a thing. Our families just never talked about it, and we were not even born when Ruth was. 
Such an amazing discovery in our family.
On the 19th, we were supposed to help set up for the Holiday Fest begin Friday and go through Sunday. However, we also had Brother and Sister Schwitzer come to the mission to teach us, and we had Pathway that night.  We had a busy and wonderful day. It is so exciting to have General Authorities come to visit the mission. There is a lot of love for missionaries, and they always provide great counsel.

Friday night it began to snow, and we had 5” before it was over. 
The snow begins with 5 inches

Brookfield Church Bldg for Holiday Family Fun Fest

It was education day at the festival, so we had to be there for children that were brought in by schools to provide them with an international experience. They had passports that they had to get stamped to be able to get a piece of candy afterwards, and many of their teachers diligently brought them by to see what we did. We had several teachers tell us that they have a genealogy section in their curriculums, and they were glad we were there to help get the kids excited about doing the work. Of course, we did not use computers, so all they could do was write down anything they knew about their families. I talked with them mainly about their family stories. I asked if any of them had a story about their family. One little girl said her gg?grandfather invented rat poison. I thought that sounded pretty good considering they had the plague in Europe, and it was spread by rats. One of the Sister Missionaries who was working with us told us that her ggrandfather came from Germany, down through England where he obtained a wife, and on to America. I don’t remember where they converted to the Gospel, but they traveled to Salt Lake City where he became the first dentist there. I love to hear the stories, and I tried to get them to think about their families and how important it is to know about those who lived before them. 
Myself, Sister Osburn, and Sister Quist (Blond on Right) Helping

Sister Green in Red Helping Students

Sister Wise Helping Some of the Younger Performers

Sister Osburn (RB) and Green (RF) Helping

The next day we had a conflict with the Fun Family History Festival that was being held at the North Stake Brookfield building.  While we had to go to that festival, we got our Elders to come down and hold down the fort which they did very well.
Elder Potz (from McKinney, Texas) and Elder Palaccio - both excellent Elders

The snow was still coming down, and we knew when we got up that morning that people were not going to come, and they didn’t. Craig had a presentation on why we as members of the Church do family history. I was supposed to help with the nursery, but there were no children, so didn’t have to worry about that. In fact, I think there were only two people who came that were not involved in some kind of presentation. I hate to admit that Craig and I weren’t keen on this festival to begin with, but the genealogy director in the stake was determined it would go her way or no way. As it turned out, it was a good workshop, but no one came. The most important thing I saw was a set of pictures that I’m determined to have for us and our children. I love them. 
Setting Up for Festival

History Fun Festival at the North Stake Building

Presenters Set Up

Presenters Working with Other Helpers
View of Empty Room

Sister Cuzner, last director of Family History Library

Photo Example I Want to Make

Another Photo Example I Want to Make

The Fun Festival was over at noon, so we hurried over to the Holiday Festival. We had gotten Elders to stand in for us that morning, and they had done a great job. There was a lady, Susan, from the Milwaukee Library who had worked in the childrens’ section but was retired now. I’m not sure that she had ever done any genealogy, but she was good to man the booth. Last year we worked with her, and she acted like she didn’t want us there and had told us not to bring any missionaries with us. A lady named Durtka and her husband are in charge of the festival, and when they came around last year they wanted to know where our missionaries were. We explained that we were told they were needed, and she told us to get them down there. She and her husband are involved in immigration efforts in America. They take care of immigrants who show up in Milwaukee. They have worked with the Church, and they love what we do. This year they came down to the genealogy booth during the summer, and they made sure we were going to be there. They asked our missionaries who were there to be sure and come also. While at the Holiday Fest, I bought an interesting bowl that was made from a burle (knot) in a tree. I love it – very unique.

While sitting at one of the tables working on my computer, I looked up and there was a couple smiling at me. I thought I knew them, but couldn’t remember. They came over and started talking and acting like long lost relatives. It turns out he was the man I had met at one of the festivals in the summer (I think it was the American Indian one), and I had found out that he was from Grayson, Virginia. I was so excited to meet someone from my part of the country, and we talked about all the places we both knew. I did not recognize his last name as one I had seen before in any of the records, but he has a sister who is working on some Walton information. I concluded that we must be kin.
Jack Suit and his Wife from Grayson, VA - kin to my Aunt Shirley Walton, late wife of Uncle Wallace - brother to my dad.
 The couple set down, and finally, they said something that gave me the clue as to who they were. I hated that I didn’t know, but I really think he had less white hair when I met him the first time. I was happy to tell him that I had found his family linked to my Aunt Shirley (Uncle Wallace’s wife). I looked up my records, and I let them look at them. One of Aunt Shirley’s grandfathers was his grandfather. He and his wife were excited to see what I had done. It was obvious that he hadn’t done much, so it was fun watching them look through what I had. We talked about getting together before we leave to go back to Layton. I hope we can do that. Evidently, they don’t live too far from where we do in West Allis.

We got some food from Senagal and shared it. It was really good. It was like a stew over some kind of noodles. Yum, yum.  There are times when I love eating foods from different countries. Our friend, Omar, is from Senagal which is what inspired us to et the food. Omar came to this country and married an American. They were married for 5 years, and he never got his citizenship. They are now divorced and had a daughter. He has now been here 20 years and is illegal. He worries all the time that he'll get a knock on his door and people will want to deport him. If he stays here 5 more years, until his daughter is 21, he can apply for citizienship again on her record. 
International food court, I wish I had one of the Senagal court. This is the German court.
Our Booth

Japanese Dancers - So Cute

King and Queen



The Scots Have Arrived

Missionaries Helping Visitors

Indian Set Up

Watching the festivities under the canoe

These little girls are sisters and cousins. They are being taught the Czech way of life. They each have so many petticoats depending on their age. They were so cute. They showed us their petticoats, the youngest one pulled her petticoats over her head to show us. They are too young to dance yet, but they are being taught their history and why their culture is important.
On Sunday, we were able to go to Sacrament and then walk out to return to the Festival. We only had to stay until 6:00 that evening, so we were looking forward to an early evening closing. I had plenty of opportunities to walk around and see the exhibits. Susan laid back and let us do the work, but it was a slow day. Although the snow had stopped the day before, it was really cold. It is sad that this was out last festival. We will always remember these days and how exciting it was to tell people about Family Search and to help them understand how easy it is to do. Our Family History director in the South Stake has told us that they have people come in all the time who are carrying the flyers we gave them at the festivals and say they have come to get help. They had no idea that there was a family history library available. When we hear that, we feel that we have made a difference here. We pray that there will be others to pick up the ball and run with it.

On Monday, I had to call Verizon and get out of a mess I had gotten myself into with them. I’m learning that when businesses such as this will tell you the information you want to hear, but nothing more. Being ignorant of what to ask, I walk away with one understanding, but find out differently when the bill comes out. They act like that, of course, is obvious and should have been known. By the time I got through talking with the woman, she refunded most of my money as a result of the mix-up, and she returned our plan to its previous status. UGH! I’m too old to read the fine print when its not given to me in terms I can understand.

That day we had lunch with Tim and Jolene Carson. How I wish they would wake up and realize that they need to get to the Temple. It’s the little things. “I find it hard to believe the Lord will keep us out of Heaven over a little cup of coffee.”  Or “I need to work some things out” meaning I’m not doing what I should to go. They are such a wonderful couple. We love them so much. Our time is running out, and it doesn’t look like we will get to go to the Temple with them. Sad!

On Tuesday, though, Craig got to take Dave Armstrong and two Elders to the Temple so Dave could get his Endowments. I had to stay at home because there wasn’t enough room for all of us in the car, and the Elders wanted to go so badly. We get to go every week, so I stayed home and did genealogy. We are so proud of Dave. Virginia, his wife, didn’t want to go down. I told her she and I could go, and we could see inside the Temple (front area where there is a waiting room), and we could go shopping if she wanted, but she would have no part of it.
Elders Tunstal and Smith, Craig and Dave (sorry for bad picture).
Our scripture for the month:

2 Nephi 31:20
Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life.

I love this scripture. I’m truly learning to feast on the Scriptures. I’m on my third reading of the Book of Mormon this year, and I hope to finish by the end of December. I’ve learned so much this time around. I would like to make it my goal to read the book at least three times every year.

Elder and Sister Lenhard


  1. I love hearing about you as a child/teenager/young adult. Love the pictures, too...that last one of you (mom) reminds me of some of my pictures. Several of the others remind me of Bethanne--which is crazy because I've never thought she looked like you. Love it!

  2. I have never heard any of those stories of your childhood, Mom, except about JFK's assassination. Do you remember when I went with you to go see that school? Please share more stories and pictures!