Saturday, November 24, 2012

Sky View High School Graduation 1975

I don't remember much of my graduation night, but have these few mementos, a picture from the paper, the program and a picture in front of the school.  I know we rehearsed many days, and I would have been with the choir which sang, "Impossible Dream," "This is our Country" and "Climb Every Mountain."

Christmases in Othello

As I was very young, I don't remember very many actual experiences around Christmas in Othello.  I remember going to larger cities to Christmas shop, Seattle or Spokane.  I remember having to get past or through Mount Ranier with the threat of winter storms and icy roads.  I also remember one year shopping in a big city, and being in the back of the rambler, where there was a compartment underneath for storing things.  We came home knowing our Christmas was under our feet, and not being able to peak. 
Weldon 1954

 We would often travel the other direction for Christmas, Idaho Falls or Rigby were prime locations for Christmas, either visiting my mom's mother in Lincoln (My grandfather passed away shortly after I was born) or father's parents in Rigby.  Sometimes we would have a joint dinner with both sets of grandparents. From the pictures I notice cards taped to the wall.  This is something we still often do at our house.

Weldon is going to hit me

1963 Christmas Day, Lincoln
1963 was a different Christmas.  We were at Grandma Wright's, after a tour of California, San Francisco, Disneyland, Rose Bowl Parade, we would move in with her having left the farm behind us.

Friday, November 23, 2012

A Christmas Story by: Charlie Wardle (Hyrum 1966)

A Christmas Story by: Charlie Wardle
December has got to be one of the slowest months of the year.  It seem like it takes Christmas forever to get here.
Our family always started celebrating Christmas early.  Right after Thanksgiving is over we all start thinking about Christmas.  A week after Thanksgiving, the Christmas tree goes up.
During the evenings of December our family loves to gather around the Christmas tree to watch the lights on it.  With the white snow outside, and all the lights in the house off, except, for the lights on the Christmas tree, the glow on the lights on the tree make the room very peaceful.
It is at this time the family would like to tell Christmas stories of the past.  I was five when this story happened, the youngest of the family.   Our family was living in Hyrum, Utah, while my dad was going to school in Denver.
With my mom being pregnant, my dad was the only one in the family, who could put up the Christmas tree.  For us kids, not having our Christmas tree up was just terrible.  All of our friends had their tree up, but not us.  Some of us kids started wondering if we might miss Christmas this year, because we knew Santa Couldn’t find us if we didn’t have a tree.
We begged and pleaded with Mom several times to put the tree up.  She would just say, “Dad will be home before Christmas, he will put it up when he gets home.”  It seemed like it took forever for Dad to get home.  A couple of days before Christmas Dad did come home.
On Christmas Eve, we as a family went out to buy our tree.  We kids were wondering if there would be any trees left.  Dad said, teasing us, “If we can’t find a Christmas tree, we’ll just have to use Mom’s flower plant instead of a tree.”  All us kids started whining.  We didn’t want a flower plant, we wanted a Christmas tree.
When we got to the tree place, to our surprise, there were a lot of trees left, and they were all half off, which made Mom and Dad happy.  All us kids ran over to the biggest and fluffiest tree there, telling mom and dad we wanted that one.  Mom and Dad didn’t like it though because there was a small part on it with no branches.  We kids begged and pleaded until Mom and Dad bought it.  Dad also fought a few extra branches to cover up the hole.  We loaded the tree into the trunk of the car and headed for home to get that tree up before Santa got there.
When we got home, Dad put the tree in the garage to drill the holes for the branches and spray the snow on it.  We kids enjoyed watching Dad do this.  We made good and sure that Dad hurried so we could get the lights and bulbs on it before Santa got there.
When Dad got done he brought the tree in and set it in front of the big window in the front room.  All us kids grabbed some bulbs to put them on the tree.  But Dad stopped us, telling us that the lights went on first.  Sara, the oldest of us kids, grabbed the Santa Claus face which had a light in it, to put on the top of the tree.  Then Sara, Connie, Weldon and Bill, all the kids that were big enough to reach the top of the tree, helped Dad put the lights up high, while I helped at the bottom of the tree.  We then put the bulbs on the tree, being the littlest, I did the ones on the bottom of the tree while my brothers and sisters did the ones up higher.  Soon the tree was all done.  We all stepped back to watch, while Sara plugged in the lights; the whole tree lit up very bright and beautiful.
We were now ready for Christmas.  All of us went and got our presents we had bought each other, and set them under the tree.
Mom had some nice hot chocolate for us which tasted real nice on that cold winter night.
Whenever we kids could, we would sneak over to the tree to see if we could find a present that belonged to us.  When we found one of our own, we could shake it and squeeze it to try to figure out what was inside it.  When Mom would see us feeling packages, she would say “now kids leave those alone before you break one—and get away from that tree before you knock the tree over.”
Then the begging would start, “Mom can we please open one up tonight?”  We kept on begging until she would give in.  We then had the big decision; which one do I open?  Which one is the best?  We would carefully pick out the one that we wanted to open.  The one that I opened was a GI Joe doll.  Right after we opened our presents Mom and Dad would send us all off to bed.
Christmas Eve was the hardest night there was to fall asleep.  I remember just falling to sleep when I heard a noise upstairs.  I thought to myself, “Santa is here.”  I waited for about five minutes, and then I started for the upstairs to see what I got.  About half way up I heard my daddy say “Back to bed!”  I asked him, “Has Santa come yet?”  My dad replied “No!  And he won’t come until you get to sleep.”  I went back to bed, and lay there until I fell to sleep.
About four in the morning, Weldon and Bill came to me, saying that Santa had come, Santa had come!  Hearing that I jumped right out of bed, ran up the stairs to see that Santa had found our house, and brought us lots of toys.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thanksgiving Through the Years

My memories of Thanksgiving have become blurred with Christmas.  The pre-Thanksgiving activities were usually at the school, telly the Mayflower story, constructing Thanksgiving turkeys with colorful feathers.
Often a feast at Aunt Audrey's in Pocatello made the day special.  Her home wasn't the largest, be we all seemed to find a place to eat, either in the living room with t.v. trays, or in the kitchen.  There was a great crowd there with many cousins.   Sometimes our attention would turn to football on the telly in the afternoon. 
More recently a tradition has been for my mom's family to gather in Logan at her church on Thanksgiving about every third year.  These are busy days, and fun.  We use one end of the gym for we decorate, while in the other we get a basketball game going.  There is a t.v. set up with a movie.  The Thanksgiving meals are spectacular wit both ham and turkey.  I love ham gravy.  There are vegetable trays and all the side dishes you could think of--bean casserole, stuffing, cheese tray etc.  After the meal we would always take family pictures on the stairs in Grandma' church.  There would be a big group picture and then individual family pictures.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

My Life in Theater: Saturday's Warrior Choir

In my first year at Utah State University, before my mission, I had the opportunity to sing in the Logan "Saturday's Warrior" Chorus.  They actually paid us for singing, $5 a night.  Steve Simmons was the choir director.  He was also the director for the USU Choir (not the advanced Chorale) and also taught me private lessons for a couple quarters.  We had a couple long runs in Logan, but also traveled to Twin Falls and Montpelier, Idaho.  They fed us on the trips.  In Montpelier we stayed with local families.  In Twin Falls I think we had a hotel. I roomed with Danny Pitcher.

Joseph L. Bishop: My Mission President

My mission president was the president of Weber State University before he was the president of the Buenos Aires North Mission.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Poetry by Sarah Teasdale

A Cry

Oh, there are eyes that he can see,
And hands to make his hands rejoice,
But to my lover I must be
Only a voice.

Oh, there are breasts to bear his head,
And lips whereon his lips can lie,
But I must be till I am dead
Only a cry.

Your Heart Will Burn, Campfire Dance

This is one of the highlights of "Your Heart Will Burn" which he performed as a ward production in 2003.  This dance is choreographed by Tamara McGhie.  Elaine Morris plays violin and Joe Eliason piano.  Mark and Billy Wardle wrote the music.  Performing are Natalia Wardle, Alysa Orton, Jean Juang, Sharon Juang, Maggie Hutlinger, Kimmie Dye, Ashley Orton and Susie McElligott.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Duckwater Round Dance

When I worked for the Duckwater Shoshone Tribe, I learned there was great power in the round dance.  The step is relatively easy, so this is a dance in which I participated.  But the power of the dance is in a large group forming hands and dancing.  One time I danced with the school children; and on another occasion the entire community participated in the dance.  The music and the step seem to increase feelings of camaraderie.  The times when I participated, everyone held hands and the circle was complete.  This video gives some idea of the music and the step.

Friday, November 9, 2012

First Year for Bridgerland Youth Soccer: 1976

With who as many people who play soccer now, it is hard to believe  this was not always the case.  My brothers and I did not play soccer growing up, but I was coaching it as a young man.  The article from the Hyrum Crusader does not name me, but if Weldon was doing something, I was doing something.  When Peter Banks moved to our community, he took the initiative to get soccer started, and Weldon was a key part of this.  We practiced at the baseball diamond at South Cache Junior High School.  This was my first introduction to soccer, other than seeing it on t.v.  It was just before I left on my mission.

November 26, 1976: First Year for Bridgerland Youth Soccer
The American Youth Soccer Organization has been introduced to Cache County.
Peter Banks has headed the Bridgerland Youth Soccer, region 131 of the AYSO.  This has been its first year in Cache County.  225 boys and girls played soccer this year.
Teams practiced at least once a week with games on Saturday at Logan Jr. High.  AYSO's motto is "Everybody Plays".
Hyrum based teams did well and earned first place honors in each of three divisions.  In division I (eight and nine year olds) the Hyrum team Sharks took first.  Playing for the Sharks were: Steve Banks, Kamran Preece, Truman Preece, David Bailey, David Wengreen, Mark Wengreen, Craig Jorgensen, Ryan Brown, Burke Reeder, Joey Maloey, Kurt Johnson and Robi Shelley.  Coaches were Weldon Wardle and Leland Preece.
The Eagles, another Hyrum based team, took first in division II (ten to twelve year olds).  Members of that team were: Mike Banks, Alex Bell, Randy Funk, Kenneth Gordon, Tim Harrison, Bret Johnson, Chris Johnson, Kenny Johnson, Scot Jorgensen, Jeff Loosli, David Preece, Ryan Reeder, Craig Whitaker, Todd Windlow and Rick Wood.  Coaches were Peter Banks and Tor Wedde.
Division III (13 and 14 year olds) saw the Dynamos, a Hyrum, Providence and Nibley team, take first.  Players were: Doug White, Corey Smith, Leonard Barton, Chris Checketts, Todd Larsen, Cory Shaffer, Eric Bell, Dewilton Binggeli, Aleck Johnson, Kenneth Campbell, Scot Johnson, Thor Dyson, Robert Johnson, Kevin Banks, Mario Wilson and Dwane Hansen.  Their coach was Larry Sanchez.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

We Lost Carol DeBolt This Past Month

Carol Debolt passed away last month.  No obituary was published at her request.  We had been corresponding at Christmas for the past several years.  Last year she had mentioned that she had cancer.  Her illness limited her ability to work.  Most recently she had worked at the stadium in San Diego--I think the Padres.  Carol loved baseball.  She had followed the Pirates, and sometime the took the West trip with them.
Carol DeBolt had lived in Hyrum, kitty-corner from Lincoln Elementary, the corner of Center and100 East, for several years.  She moved to Cache Valley to work with the Home Start program. This was a program related to Head Start, working with preschool children.
Carol had four children, Judy, David, Linda and Ben.  David and Ben participated in Hyrum sports, mostly baseball.  They both played short stop.  Carol was very active in the kids sports.  She and Sister McBride, (mother of Darrus and Robbie) would take it upon themselves to provide meals for us.  They were the team mothers.  They would prepare the meals, and we would eat them is how that worked.  We also had many good times, because it was impossible to always be focused on baseball.  Spoons was a really big hit.  We also played a game of putting flour in a cup and then putting a penny on top.  We would slowly cut the flour away until the penny would fall--something like Jenga.  We had many fun times.
Carol was a great fan of Ohio State.  They played two seasons in a row at the Rose Bowl, and we boys went on a road trip to Pasadena.  We slept on the street to have a good spot for the Rose Bowl Parade.  We watched the game and both years Ohio State lost.  One year the Volkswagon Van Carol drove had issues.  It fell on me to fix the alternator one time with card board pieces, because the garage in the desert didn't have the part.  It got us home, and then died.
Carol was  voice of agitation in the community.  She spoke out for recreational opportunities and fair government. 
The DeBolts left Hyrum for California after I returned home from my mission; probably 1979.  I took environmental science at Utah State with David.  David had continued playing baseball, including Sky View High School, and I heard some university in San Diego. 
Before I went on my mission, I gave Carol a Book of Mormon.  I stayed at their house until early in the morning, building up my nerve to give it to her.  I think she put it with many others she had been given over the years.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Hyrum Lost a Friend This Week: Art Keeley
    Growing up I was good friends with David Keeley, and consequently spend quite a bit of time in the seminary building where Art Keeley worked.  There were two classes.  Brother Keeley was always there, while the other teacher seemed to have more turnover.  Brother Keeley had a snack drawer where he would sell candy.  Some weeks I would take my lunch money and blow it on candy.
     Going home from school, we had a half hour wait for the bus to come.  So with David we would hang in the seminary building where we played a lot of ping pong.  There were four of us, David, Terril Morgan, Randy Allen and myself.  We also spent a lot of time in Brother Keeley's classroom on the piano.  Randy would really play, and the rest of us would play "Peter Pumpkin Eater" on the black keys or "Chopsticks" or "Heart and Soul."  Some days Brother Keeley would have us help with different chores.  We went in the basement several times storing things or bringing things from storage.
     Some days we over did and missed the bus.  Then Brother Keeley would give us a ride, although I'm not sure he always liked us tagging along.  He had an old white station wagon.  They would have to stop at someone's house on the way where they bought fresh cow's milk.
     Brother Keeley had a good sense of humor and would use it in his class.  I remember he made a game on Jeopardy game on Church History and the question was, "liquor on the top shelf."  The answer was "Hyrum," the town where I grew up.
    At South Cache there was an annual basketball game; faculty verses ninth-grade boys team at the end of the year.  Brother Keeley would participate, sometimes as the ref, with the goal of bringing some comic entertainment.  He would do a good job.
     A few years later, 1981, when I graduated form Utah State, there was a special article in that Art Keeley was graduating with at least a couple of his children, including David.  He had gone back to school to get a Masters in Special Education.  He had developed an interest as a younger son was born with down's syndrome.
     The Keeley family was a large group, and I know I can't remember them all.  Claudia the oldest, and then David, my age, James, Lisa, Kevin and then a few younger siblings.