Thursday, August 9, 2018

What I Thought I Knew About Jesus When I Was a Little Kid

As I was going through some of TRQ's old files, I found something I must have been given while I was in Primary or Sunday School.  It's a handout with a picture of Jesus.  Underneath there is one sentence with two spaces to fill-in-the-blanks.  Here it is.

The first miracle of Jesus was performed in _________ when Jesus turned the water into ___________.

You'll be please to know I answered "Cana"and "punch."

Punch is in the house, y'all.  Party on.

Saturday, August 4, 2018


People often ask how TRQ is doing and I always say YOU CANNOT KEEP A BOOT-WEARING, BUTT-KICKING WYOMING GIRL DOWN.  Because you can't.

But things have been hard, of course, and the last month has been particularly difficult for her, which is probably why I feel like her grandmother--the former game warden of Sublette County, the terrorizer of men and animals who stood in her way, the doubter of my father's worthiness to marry her granddaughter because he didn't know how to fish, the woman for whom TRQ was named--has been whispering in my ear lately.  Here's what she says:  Look after my granddaughter right now unless you want THIS boot-wearing, butt-kicking Wyoming girl to tan your little hide when I see you again on the other side.

OK, Grandma Pat.  Message received.

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Things I Have Done This Summer to Make Myself Feel Better

One of my boys today told me he'd read my blog post about Churchill's little black dog and wanted to know if I was still doing better.  I said to him OKAY, YOU ARE NOW MY FAVORITE SON BECAUSE YOU READ MY BLOG.  (Note to my other four sons:  you'll be my favorites, too, if you tell me you've read my blog.)

But that's not the point.  The point is his question made me think a little about the things I've been doing that have elevated my mood.  Here they are in no particular order.

1.  Gardening
2.  Sitting on the back porch every night, watching the day fade away
3.  Reading
4.  Walking through the cemetery with Ken Cannon and the dogs
5.  Connecting with grandkids
6.  Listening to baseball on the radio
7.  Going to Bees games
8.  Attending a concert or two at Red Butte
9.  Having tea with Lisa B and her girls
10. Traveling with TRQ
11. Eating KFC whenever I feel like it
12. Dude.  I love KFC
13. Strolling through Liberty Park with Gigi
14. Working on a novel I may never finish and encouraging Louise to do the same
15. Walking every morning with Sally, Kathy and Nancy

Monday, July 30, 2018


Unlike most people in my Sunday School class who read their scriptures on their phones, I pack around an actual Bible.  That is if I think about it.  And honestly I just grab whatever one I find lying about because you know how Bibles are.  Always lying about.  Which is why I had Ken Cannon's missionary Bible with me yesterday.

Anyway, it was filled with underlinings and notes in the margins.  Child baptism!  Faith!  Missing scripture!  I saw the handwriting of Ken Cannon's nineteen year-old self, and suddenly I had a vision of him being all earnest in his brown Napoleon Dynamite suit, TAKING THE GOSPEL TO THE WORLD, YO.

That was a lot of years ago.  But I enjoyed thinking about Boy Ken Cannon, and I felt grateful to him for writing in his Bible.  That's the beauty of a physical book.  You can see what people marked up or which pages they folded or how they responded (!!!!!!) to an idea.  It's like having a conversation with a previous reader.  A one-sided conversation, maybe.

But still.

Saturday, July 28, 2018

Time's Gift

Ugh.  What a boring title.  Who'd want to read a post about that?!

But whatever.

I went to a wedding shower today for my great-nephew (seriously?  I have one of those old enough to get married?!) where my mother-in-law (who's 98) fondly reminisced about her old home in Lincoln, Nebraska.  My sister-in-law noted that her mother only remembers the good things about life there, and it occurred to me that the passage of time frequently allows us to do that--remember what we loved about a place or a person.

When I think about my childhood in Edgemont, I don't think about the nightmares I was prone to having as a kid.  I don't dwell on the anxiety I frequently felt about my dad's job and whether or not we'd have to move.  I don't remember the way that neighborhood kids made shifting and hurtful alliances with and against one another.  I rarely remember the illness that put me in bed for the better part of a year.

Instead, I think about the way it felt to go screaming down our street on a that green Schwinn bike and running barefoot--fast and hard--through a sunlit summer.

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Feeling Better Now

Well, it's no secret that I got toppled over by Churchill's Black Dog this spring.  But I've been doing my best to show Black Dog who's alpha.

This afternoon when I looked at my great-grandmother's empty white pitcher sitting on the table in my entry way, I felt a little explosion of joy in my chest when I thought about buying a bouquet of sunflowers and filling that empty white pitcher right up with bright yellow flowers.  I haven't felt that way in months.

Black Dog hasn't exactly won his Canine Good Citizen certificate yet.  But things are definitely looking up.

Monday, July 16, 2018

Oh. I get it. I'M AFRAID!

I've been tinkering around with a manuscript.  And I have the whole morning blocked out to work on it.   This is what I've done so far.

1.  Taken out the garbage
2.  Also the recycling
3.  Also the brown bin where you put grass clippings and stuff
4.  Texted my kids
5.  Texted my kids' wives
6.  Checked out Lisa B's Facebook and noted how adorable the dress she was wearing to her event the other night is
7.  Rearranged the gnomes on my desk
8.  Drunk two Dr Peppers
9.  The ones with unicorns on the cans
11. Called for the cat who is ignoring me
12. Looked for my calendar to remind myself what I have to do today
13. Which I already knew
14. Write!
15. Why am I not writing?

Because I'm scared.  I don't know exactly what to do next.  I'm at that place where I need to move on, leap to the next level, whatever.  But.  Instead I'm letting myself be earthbound.

I'll let you know how it goes.

P.S.  I just looked at some dragonfly earrings on Etsy.