Good Christmas at Joanne’s. Christmas Eve went to Church. The service was good. Various members stood and spoke as if they were the people concerned; Joseph - the Innkeeper - a Shepherd and Mary. It was quite moving and made the nativity really happen before your eyes.
I spent some time with Gary & Joanne chatting, it was really nice.
Gary went to Helen’s home on the 27th then rang me New Year’s Eve to say that he and Helen were getting married in May or June. I love Helen but I feel my son is choosing between the Celestial Kingdom and a few years of happiness now. If only he told her how important his religion is to him. I can only pray, and I do.
Thursday morning, and I am waiting daily to hear about Joanne, her baby is due anytime. This week I have dieted and gone from 12-5 to 12-1. I will keep at it this time. It’s all a matter of controlling my appetite and eating the right foods.
I am reading the Autobiography of Parley P Pratt. What a great man. He really understood. If there hadn’t been men like him to help Joseph the church wouldn’t have spread like it did.
S P E C I A L
FRIDAY JANUARY 29TH 1993
Today, Joanne’s son was born. They are calling him Joseph Nicholas. She rang last night to say she was going into hospital and if she hadn’t started in labour, they would break her waters in the morning. I was at work worrying till 4 o’clock when Ronnie rang to say all was well. The baby was born at 2-45, not bad going to say she only started in labour at 1-0. We seem to have our babies fast in our family.
I brought a box of chocolates at work and handed them, around. I was so pleased. Someone said, “Is it your first grandchild?” I said, “No, my 10th, but every one is a gem.”
Sunday, 31 JAN
We took Peggy down to Telford and visited Joanne in hospital. I didn’t want to come home. There are times when I find it a real bind to be away from my children.
Maybe we will live in America with Pam and Richard. I can’t imagine growing old and living a long way away from my family.
Tues. 2 FEB
Got a long letter from Pam today (unusual). She works hard to make sure her children get the best.
THURS. 25 FEB.
We went to the temple with Mike and Millie for 3 days at the beginning of this month. It was the most enjoyable time I have ever spent in the temple, except for when I did the work for my mother and father and when the girls were sealed and my own sealing. When I think about it, I have had some wonderful times in the temple.
This time was quite different. I went as a worker not a patron, so I was in training. It was so exciting to be helping. The spirit was so strong. I worked in the nursery for a couple of hours, looking after a baby which fell asleep in my arms. I just sat and rocked it. Later I dressed her in white and carried her up to the sealing rooms to be sealed to her parents. That was a great thrill.
It was good to be with Mike and Millie. We have been told that our ward will split soon and Bradford may become a stake. I find it exciting to be part of church history. I enjoy change. It gives you a chance to reform and work harder. There are many old friends that I shall miss, but we can always keep in touch.
Gary rang yesterday – no it was Tuesday. He was on the phone quite a while. I really enjoyed talking to him. Helen and he plan to marry on the 1st of May. I am still praying and fasting for Helen to join the church.
I hope Gary knows just what he is doing. He could lose his salvation --- oh, how awful. I can’t bear to think about it.
MON 1st MCH 93
Karen rang whilst I was at work. She told Ronnie about an incident over the weekend, whereby someone had been talking to her children in a demeaning manner about the Asian people. Karen told him they didn’t share is opinions on the matter and would he not teach his children to look down on other nationalities. I feel so proud of her for standing up for what she believes in.
Pam rang to say she is pregnant. I pray she will keep well and be able to deliver safely. She will be 38 this June. She had a dream that she had twins. That would be rather nice.
Joanne is having a struggle with her new baby. They take time to settle into this world and she worries so. I am glad that Karen is close by to help her. I only wish I was. Why am I so far away from my children?
April 11th 1993
Today was Easter Sunday. It was a fast day for us as we had the Satellite Broadcast [for General Conference] last week at Wakefield Town Hall. I love them. It is so good to feel part of it live.
Today was a happy day. We brought Enid Castle and Danny home for tea, then I wrote to Andrew. He sent me a letter last week which is rather nice.
Gary and Helen came on Tuesday and stayed overnight with us. I really enjoyed playing games with them during the evening.
Ronnie bought me a chocolate Easter Bunny and some earrings and David Copperfield (book). Quite unexpected and lovely.
SUN 28th APRIL
Today was an important day in the growth of the church. Huddersfield 1 and 2 met at Halifax where the Stake President re-organized us into 2 [units] [a] wards and a branch, called Meltham Branch. Most people were happy to see the church growing.
There were one or two whose sorrow at parting from friends was overwhelming. Now is the time to do what we sing in the hymn, “I’ll go where you want me to go, dear Lord.”
Ronnie and I went to Louise Fearnley’s for dinner tonight. Her husband Roger makes us feel so welcome.
On Sunday, March 7th, Joseph Nicholas Davies was blessed. We had a lovely family gathering. Gary and Helen were there and gave us our wedding invitations. The baby is really doing well.
Last Friday, we had our last Homemaking --- well, it was really a party and most of the sisters were there. We really had a great time together. After they had mostly gone home around ten, Millie, Donna, Melanie, Lesley Dearnley and myself stayed on and chatted until one o’clock. It was unusual, but enjoyable. Ronnie was up at Durham, speaking at a Singles Convention. (When the cat’s away, the mice do play.)
SAT. MAY 1st 1993 *****“GARY’S WEDDING”*****
Today we travelled from Nicholas and Joanne’s home to MWNT, pronounced “Munt”. It was a nice journey through beautiful Wales.
We stopped for toasted tea cakes and hot chocolate and had a look round a village fair. Joanne’s baby was very good.
Karen and Lewis and family had [hired] a caravan not far from the church, which stood alone in a field not far from the edge of the cliff. Gary with Chris and Melanie and Danny and Julie were at Bed and Breakfast at the house on the caravan site. Across the fields on a hillside stood a big old farmhouse, where Helen lived with her family.
We got changed in Karen’s caravan, where I discovered I had left my blouse at Joanne’s. I brought it out with the suit on its own and the girls said I looked fine, but how I wish I had the blouse. Maybe I am getting too proud.
The service was very nice. It wasn’t complicated and the hymns were easy ones I knew quite well. A few of the words were different.
Derek and Elizabeth Gadsby were so nice and did everything they could to make us feel welcome and at ease.
Little Lewis was here, there and everywhere with a video camera. Gary looked quite yellow in church, but his colour came back after Helen arrived.
While the service was going on I felt “what are we doing here?” There was nothing I could do --- the talking was over and the decision taken.
How much more joy would I have felt if they had been heading for the temple after the service. I have not given up yet, nor will I ever.
Every Sunday I will fast for them both.
The Gadsby family are really nice. What an asset they would be to building of God’s Kingdom, if only they would accept the gospel. The weather was cool, but sunny.
TUES MAY 4TH
Today is my 8th Wedding Anniversary. It doesn’t seem so long since we married. It’s been a good 8 years. We still have a way to go to make it a Celestial Marriage, but we are working on it.
Rang Pam to tell her about the wedding. She is pregnant and coping fairly well. She has to rest a lot. She is 38 next month, which is late to be having children, but she wanted another before she finished. I pray every day for her welfare and for Ruth Jackson, too.
She is pregnant with her 7th child and one of her children is brain damaged, so she has a lot of hard work to do. She looked so tired, when I last saw her.
Thurs. 6th May
Today Ronnie got a cheque for £131.00 for things he has sent to the Ensign [magazine], which will be published. It’s his first payment for that kind of work, which he is very good at. We are hoping it will be in the June Ensign.
SUN. MAY 16th 93
Today was our Ward Conference. John Scott talked about visiting the sick, the lonely and the needy. He said that each person in the ward needed to be visited and he really put the Lord’s teaching into perspective.
I was interviewed to be a counsellor in Primary to Leslie Dearnley. I am looking forward to it, but will so miss working with Silva. I was quite excited about it, but the Lord’s will be done.
Karen rang. She says Gary and Helen called to see her and he seems very happy. He talks about going into business with Chris Leonard in the Pine Furniture Business. I hope he does simply for the fact that Chris will influence him for good!
On Tuesday I found the wedding of my great-great-grandfather. I am excited to send off for a certificate.
Thursday last was our Homemaking [meeting] at Halifax. Sister Carol Grey came from Sheffield to talk to us about her organizing and driving a truck of aid to the people in Bosnia. She has been there 3 times with a convoy called Starlight U.K. The stories she told us made us weep and realize how fortunate we are and how much we need to help our neighbour.
Ronnie and I decided to give £100.00 to help to buy a wagon to take the supplies over in.
SUNDAY 23 MAY
Pam tells me she is expecting a baby girl and she rather likes the name Annie. That’s nice.
We had our Singles Conference this weekend. It was a huge success. We had to hold it at Bradford so the numbers were a lot less. We probably had about 80 to 90 people there.
The service project on the Saturday afternoon was very good. There were about 60 children (disabled in some way) and they had a disco party.
Mad Mac [Brithe John McCechnie] came from Dewsbury to do it, and he also performed as a magician. The kids loved him. He doesn’t charge for these things, which is very nice.
The Lord Mayor came and he enjoyed himself, too. I hope people will see us in a better light.
We had a fireside tonight. Chris Hopkinson spoke about the priesthood authority. It was very interesting.
TUES 1st JUNE
Ronnie and I went to Elland Picture House [The Rex Cinema] to see a film called “Ground Hog Day.” It was about a man who had to go through the same day over and over again. At first he took advantage of everyone and then he felt sorry for himself and tried to kill himself. Then he started to help people until he became so loveable everybody in the town loved him, and then the day moved on.
We don’t have the same day or even the same opportunities each day, but we do have a new day to improve ourselves and there is always someone to help.
Ronnie and I sent Sister Grey another £400.00 today. We don’t have a lot and this money was in case I fell sick, because Asda doesn’t pay me sick pay. But, as Ronnie said, if we are low at least we won’t starve and these people are [starving], so we must give. I am glad we have this opportunity.
I have been released as a counsellor in Relief Society and called as a counsellor in Primary under Leslie Dearnley and with Wendy McEwen. I will enjoy this calling, I’m sure.
MON. Sept. 20th
An update from last June is that I really love Primary. I knew I would. In July we had a French student, Thomas. We took him down to Karen’s for a week. I don’t think he was too happy there. When we brought him around it was Adam’s 14th birthday.
We did the usual round of Bolton Abbey, Skipton Castle, and Castle Hill, but we did something different like going down a mine at Wakefield. It was quite an experience. When you see how people had to work just to survive it was horrendous. What a wicked world, when just a few can have so much and so many have to suffer for it. That is not the way the Lord intended.
In August, Ronnie and I went to Seattle – Vashon Island – for 3 weeks. It was nice. Pam is expecting. In fact, today is the day [when the baby is due] and I am fasting and waiting and praying. Even though she wasn’t well, she made us so welcome and Richard, too. The children were amazing. They cleaned and worked so hard. They will certainly be self-sufficient when they have to be.
Ronnie went to Montana for a week to visit his daughter, Andrea and her husband and new baby. He went on the train this time, which was much more comfortable. He was elated when he got back because he felt so much closer to his daughter. I am so glad.
Gary and Helen stayed in our house to look after the dog whilst we were away. They have a flat down in Wolverhampton now and Gary is helping to set up a business finding accommodation for the students. I was hoping they would be staying up here and that Gary would be working with Chris Leonard, but that idea seems to have fallen through.
MON. SEPT 20th 1993
Rachel Joanne Beck was born. Pam rang me 10 minutes after her birth. I am so happy.
THURS. 30 Sept. 1993
Ronnie and I and Matt visited Gary and Helen last week. We went on Tuesday, slept over and came back on Wednesday.
We had a walk in a park in Wolverhampton where there were some beautiful ducks and geese, and some very tame grey squirrels. I really enjoyed being with Gary and Helen. They get on very well and work together well in the home. Helen makes me laugh.
When I told them what Pam was calling her baby she buried her face in Gary’s arm and said, “They didn’t call it Helen.”
When I told Karen she said to tell Helen we’ve done that joke before. Well, I haven’t seen it before.
Joanne came up last Saturday with Joseph. It has really been nice to have them here. They are no bother at all, and Joanne help around the house. Joseph is lovely. I took him in to Asda yesterday to show him off. He performed beautifully and smiled at everyone. I have some of the world’s greatest grandchildren. I wish I saw more of them.
Francis got a temporary job. He has been up at 7 o’clock every morning to catch the 7:30 bus to Honley, where he has been packing. He doesn’t like the work, but he has persevered and gone every day. I am quite pleased with his efforts.
I don’t like lazy people. They don’t warrant respect, when they sit back and take and never give. It is not the Lord’s way.
SUNDAY 10th OCT
Karen rang today to say that Abigail had been to the temple yesterday to do baptisms for the dead. She did 7. I am so pleased my grandchildren are now doing the same things that my children were able to do at the temple.
With the [London] Temple being closed for a long time, Lewis and Adam didn’t get an opportunity to go, but if we take some family files down they will be able to do some. We must arrange it. It would be great to have a family week at the Temple.
23rd Oct. 1993
Nathan had an accident today. His front wheel came off his bike and he fell over the front onto his face. His mouth was badly cut inside and his poor little face is all swollen and sore. How it hurts inside when one of your own is hurt. I (and I’m sure his mother and father) would take all the pain from him if we could.
I suppose our Heavenly Father would like to take all our pain from us, but he can’t if we are to progress. How he must hurt when he looks down on all the suffering going on in the world at this time. Why are people so wicked to each other and cause so much pain. Even within our Latter-day Saint homes, we could be kinder and try not to hurt each other.
NOVEMBER 19, 1993
My 60th birthday today. It’s hard to believe that I have lived on this earth for 60 years. It hasn’t been a bad life “all told.” I have had my good times and my bad times and my share of pain and sorrow, but I can see looking back that the Lord has looked after me and guided my footsteps and blessed me greatly. The thing which is most important to me is my testimony of my Savior and my life revolves around that. My constant prayers are for my children and grandchildren, that they may have testimonies strong enough to keep them on the right path, so we can be an eternal family.
I went into work and had so many good wishes expressed. I was quite overwhelmed. The checkout supervisors and office staff had collected. They gave me a beautiful card and a little cake with a candle on and £10.00 in vouchers. Wasn’t that lovely?
Ronnie bought me a lovely silver necklace to match my bracelet, and a lovely card.
We travelled down to Joanne’s for dinner. No, before that when I got home at lunch time Mike and Millie came for lunch and brought me tights, chocolates, grape juice and a cake. They are so generous. Then we went down to Joanne’s.
The journey took 4 ½ hours instead of 2 ¼. It was awful on the motorway. When we arrived in St. George’s we called at Karen’s to pick up my present. She was sat watching television and Jacob was asleep on the couch. All was quiet, and what I thought might have been a surprise party obviously wasn’t.
We chatted to Karen and learned the sad news that Lewis’s father, Lewis Brownlow, had died that morning so Lewis wasn’t home.
After a while Karen said, come and get your present and I followed her into the dining room, where Joanne and Nick and Joseph, Gary and Helen, Lewis, Adam, Abigail and Nathan were all waiting for me. It was a surprise party and I was so pleased.
They gave me lots of hugs and kisses (worth their weight in gold) and a bouquet of flowers and an envelope with lots of money to spend. (I bought a watch and a pair of shoes.) The money was nice, but the love was wonderful.
Pam rang to share our joy. Oh, how I hope we can celebrate together in the eternities.
God bless my husband and children.
MON. 29 NOV. 93
Very bitter cold outside. How grateful I am for a warm home, with all its comforts. I am so fortunate. The girls in the checkouts at Asda are going to bring a shoe box of goodies for Bosnia, which I will send to Carol Gray, a lovely lady in Sheffield, who takes them to Bosnia herself. We all should do something.
I had another birthday party on Saturday. My special church friends came and we had an evening of laughter and fun, at Donna McMillan’s home.
I like December when we are singing carols and getting ready for Christmas.
I am now working in the new Asda and it is easier because of the modern tills and better hours. I work 3 mornings a week for 5 hours each, which with my pension of £38.97 makes my income up to £90.00 a week.
On Christmas Eve we went to pick Matthew up in Bradford at 8 o’clock, then travelled down to Telford. It was a pleasant trip. We took Ella, the dog, with us. She is getting old now and has eczema, which doesn’t look nice, but she has an endearing face still.
We took the turkey, Karen cooked it and made the starters and dessert, whilst at Joanne’s we cooked the vegetables. We forgot about gravy, but we had fun eating together.
I really enjoyed being with my grandchildren. Each one is very special and I wouldn’t swap them for the world. I pray every day for them. We stayed over until Wednesday.
On Tuesday Gary and Helen came for the day. I bought Gary a temple tie pin. I hope it reminds him of his covenants. I also ordered the Ensign to be delivered to their home once a month.
My only regret was I didn’t get to see a Nativity this year, because of the car not starting and being late down to Telford.