Tip-toeing and camera flashing through the tulips


It’s become a tradition of sorts to drive down to Thanksgiving Point in Lehi, Utah during Tulip Festival.

The girls were just tiny the first time and now every spring their words come begging to know when they can go.

When I looked at this photo from a year or two ago, I wanted to name it something else. I wanted to call it, “Not As the World Giveth” and I wanted to photoshop out the ladies in the background. Then I realized this one includes them too.

We try to go to the festival when we think the least amount of other people will be there, because we all go to see the flowers, to breathe in the smells of nature, to feel the spray of water as you walk the pathways.

We all go there to find peace.

It is like any other beautiful spot, a place of reverie, we lean over and smell the flowers and peer into their amazing artwork, and as children, they just enjoy the moment and then it moves on.

For adults, like the woman taking pictures, we try to preserve these moments for as long as we can. We prepare for this day. We choose our clothing so we can feel as pretty as the flowers. We find the best camera for our needs. We make sure we will have the perfect picnic lunch. Some gather the children to take while others get sitters so they can spend this time alone. Others go there hoping to meet a romantic stranger.

But we all go.

And sometimes, even if just for a moment, we find peace.

stepping back in time


When an opportunity is placed before you to go see any sort of re-enactment, no matter how unlikely you are to enjoy it, take it.

Life was just going along pretty normal, one day we are lying around without much going on and the next moment we are on our way to Custer’s Last Stand Re-enactment.

It’s a bit odd to wake up one morning with horses and Cavalry and Native Americans camping out beside your tent. Imagine if you will, crawling out of your tent to run into the curly blond haired Custer at your feet, smiling down at you when he has been up since before sunrise.

As taken as you might be by his sparkly smile, the thing you start to notice more are the horses.


The Native horses are sent out on their own to wander down through the tents and get a drink of water. They do this and then head home on their own accord.

The Cavalry’s horses are tied up and led every step of their day, so they don’t cause a ruckus in camp.

After practices all day,  the real performance finally begins.

You are sitting out on the field being transported back in time to this long forgotten battle between two totally different groups of men when (with the exception of one unusually handsome Native rider) you only see the horses, and in particular, the Native horses, who, without riders anywhere near, start to do their routine right in front of your feet.

Back and forth and back and forth these beauties dance in perfect time with the script.



Far away in the fields you see uniforms and stallions with shiny buttons coming ever so slowly near, and soon the dancing horses find their way to their caretakers and the show goes on.

One can hardly recall the shouts and the blood that undoubtedly were painstakingly practiced by all these men, but to this day the dance of the horses continues in my head.

Kirlian Aura’s & Gifts

2004 01 10 Provo

Part of enjoying the wonder of this place called Earth is partaking of new and delightful experiences wherever and whenever they appear. Always thinking of our own safety and that of others around us, of course.

The opportunity presented itself in 2004 to have a man who had a machine that did Kirlian Photography. We were told with these photos the man could look at the aura in the photo and see possible health issues, so we decided to go explore this new idea.

The line of people before us was pretty long so we took our place and watched and listened.

He would call the next person to come up and he would put a black shield like a hairdresser might use around the person.

He then had the person put their fingers on a device that connected to the “camera”.

Next, he would ask the person to think of their favorite place, a spa, a cabin, a waterfall, etc. He would talk a bit with them and ask them for some specifics so as to get them really comfortable and then a flash and it was all over. The photo was given and the person went away smiling.

As you can see if you could look real close at my picture, I did not have this experience. If you could look really close you would notice my nose looks like I spent time recently with Rudolph. There are a myriad of tears flowing down the black curtain over my chest which is beating a thousand beats a minute as he took this photo.

In my experience, when he told me to go to my favorite spot, I did. He asked me where I was, I said, “I am at Five Mile Creek” he asked me to describe it as if I was taking him along.

So I started where I always did, in my head I envisioned the winding road that I would drive to get to the creek and I said, I am driving down the road to get there. He stopped me and said, “The trees are like a tunnel!”, I said, “Yes, yes, they are.”

I continued and got out of the van and started to walk down to the creek, at this point he started to talk about the squirrels and I concurred there were a lot of squirrels in the woods. Next the water rolling over the sticks and stones, still all you might expect to find at a place called 5 mile creek.

I was starting to get suspicious as he mentioned the birds and the fall leaves, because I hadn’t mentioned the time of year. I had this funny feeling in my gut and I decided to test it.

I turned in the other direction and headed down to the beach. Yep, right here is Lake Michigan, “The Mother of all Lakes” and always the end reason for any trip to 5 Mile.

I watched his face, as I did not mention what I had done, nor where I was, and his surprised look hit me harder than I would have thought, had I even  considered that someone had that gift.

He said, “What is THAT?!!!”

I smiled as the tears flowed down my cheeks and I told him, “THAT is Lake Michigan.”

And so it was, that I alone am witness to what we both “saw” that day, together, and this photo that was supposed to tell me if I had any health issues from my aura, instead taught me that there are so many more Gifts of the Spirit than anyone ever talks or writes about.

I began to look around for more of these wonders in the people around me. Gifts that most never consider, like the girl who cut my hair at the mall, who puts you to sleep with her brushing. Every single time! and people go back to her just for the relaxation.

Do we come down to this planet with these gifts or do we develop them here? I believe from talking to people – and everyone has at least one of these gifts – that we came down with them, and it is our choices that help us develop them.

Look at a gifted musician and you know that they practiced and spent hours honing their gifts, but some of them seem to have that extra little something that makes it truly a gift.

Would this man have used this gift had he not gotten a Kirlian camera? Probably, but would I have ever experienced it had he not chosen to take those photos that day? No.

When a wonder is presented, always take the time to enjoy it, even if the tears flow.

a storm over Manti


One day as we were driving along the backroads of central Utah with LaVan Martineau and his girls, he looked over and asked what could I see in the mountains?

There was silence for a bit as I took a look out the window and finally the answer came very quietly. “All I ever see when I look at the mountains are birds.”

He got his big grin out and said, “Yes! That is what you are supposed see!”

Now, that is not all you are supposed to see, one day he showed me a large snake on the mountain, but a small landslide had occurred recently that changed the snake to a broken snake and he pointed this out to us and possible meanings. It’s a fun thing to be able to drive along with someone who can read the mountains and teach at the same time.

Many would not listen to thoughts such as these, but then, they miss out on all the fun too!

This picture here above was taken high on a mountaintop west of Manti, Utah. It was a very stormy day and one in which no sane people would be driving up there, but there we found ourselves. As we got out to take this picture a very large eagle descended upon us so we rushed to the truck for cover, beautiful & scarey at the same time.

You can’t see the rainbow that was just forming on the other side of the valley, but maybe, just maybe you can see the bird?

His tailfeathers are spread wide and he is about to swoop down over the valley.

What things do you see when you look at the mountains? Whatever it is, I hope you have fun looking!


Mom’s Foray into a Food Co-op

Grain Train

One afternoon in the early 1970’s, my mom took me to an old building in downtown Petoskey, Michigan to visit her new foray into weird food for the family.

I cannot recall which building it was anymore but I recall climbing a whole lot of scary wooden stairs and walking down old hallways and finding a place filled with the smell of honey, bee pollen, grains and wonderful warm spices.

The place was called The Grain Train Food Co-op and my mom was determined her family would have a nice storage of wheat, honey and dried fruits to fill our hunger needs.

She bought a few of these little containers called Dannon yogurt and she filled a small paper bag with dried pineapple rings as a treat on the way home.

We were quite skeptical about this yogurt but we enjoyed the fruit on the bottom a lot. The pineapple rings and dates have also weathered the test of time and find their way into my own pantry, as you can see from the photo above.

Mom bought like a half a ton of hard winter wheat that the co-op ordered for her and she taught herself and others how to bake with it. One month she had us, as a family, eat mainly from wheat, honey, salt, oil and powdered milk. I’m sure there were a lot of complaints that month she had to endure.

Mom taught community classes on using gluten and about healthy and “fun” ways to eat it.

Today some of her children cannot eat wheat or gluten, so we are learning to do as she did and teach ourselves about new things to eat such as, “Forbidden Rice” and “Hemp Hearts”.

I love to head into Whole Foods and fill the cart with nice healthy foodstuffs but I miss climbing those stairs into a backroom with my Mom and feeling like I stepped back into Laura Ingalls Wilder’s day, for a moment or two.

When we visit Petoskey in the summer we always stop by the Grain Train store but it isn’t the same as those first years high up in an old building with those nice spicy smells.