Dean is Old

This little baby, born feet first, just celebrated his 55th birthday earlier this month!  During the difficult delivery, mom said something whispered to her to give up on this baby, but she didn’t listen to that voice.Baby Dean

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DeVere… in the News!

Happy 74th Birthday to my Dad… today!

De -49 Chevy

Here are some news articles featuring him:

De-Donna New Parents

1) This first one was a chance photograph taken in December 1961.  A beautiful young couple with their first child… me!

De-Donna Pistols

2) My father was a policeman in Springville, Utah for many years.  Both he and my mother often entered police shooting competitions.  He was always so thrilled when she out shot him!

DeVere  Token Hobby

3) My father has been collecting “tokens” for many years… he has a spectacular collection.  Tokens are coin-like objects that can be traded for something of value.  My mom has spent a lot of time waiting while my dad haggled for tokens!

De-Donna 50th Anniversary

4) Lastly, here is an article about my parents when they celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in December 2010.

Finding Donna Jean

Happy Birthday to my Mommy, who is 73-yrs-old today!

Donna Jean attended the old “Pink School” in Nephi, Utah.

Can you find her in the pictures below?

Donna 1st with Richmond (front of teacher)21st Grade with Ms. Richmond, 1947-48

Donna Jean is standing directly in front of the teacher… teacher’s pet!

*Her best friend, Nona, is in the back row, 5th from left

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Donna 2nd with Belliston (middle at L)22nd Grade with Ms. Belliston, 1948-49

Donna Jean is in the middle row at left

*Nona, is in the middle row at right

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Donna 3rd with Stephenson (middle 6th from R)23rd Grade with Ms. Stephenson, 1949-50

Donna Jean is in the middle row, 6th from right

*Nona is in the middle row, 6th from left… matching dresses!

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Donna 4th with Ferre (missing)24th Grade with Mr. Ferre, 1950-51

Donna Jean is absent on this picture day 😦

*Nona is in the middle row at left

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Donna 5th with Mellor (middle 4th from L)25th Grade with Mr. Mellor, 1951-52

Donna Jean is in the middle row, 4th from left

*Nona is absent on this picture day 😦

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Donna 6th with Evans (back 6th from R)26th Grade with Mr. Evans, 1952-53

Donna Jean is in the back row, 7th from right

*Nona is in the back row, 6th from right

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Donna -Jr27th Grade with unknown teacher, 1953-54

Donna Jean is in the middle row, 4th from right

*Nona is in the middle row, 3rd from right

DeVere, a classic “Utah” name

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DeVere Kelsey

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18 April 1940

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Happy 72nd Birthday to my father… TODAY!!  He prefers to go by the name of De… but I revere DeVere, because of the choices he made in his life that had a huge impact on my life.  Dad was born in the middle of 9 children to a very poor family in Utah.  He and many of his siblings were able to break out of a legacy of alcohol that had kept their family in poverty.

The best choice my father made in his life was to marry my mother.  Despite opposition and/or lack of support from their own parents, my parents chose to marry for eternity.  Dad has told us that once he and mom were kissing a lot in his car.  They stopped suddenly and reminded each other that they wanted to marry in the temple.  So, they said a prayer together asking for help to remain worthy to marry in the temple.  Sounds like a small thing, but I believe this choice was a turning point in their future lives together.  My parents were married on 9 Dec 1960 in the Manti Temple.  I was born “in the covenant” the following November.

Dad told me once that he had wanted to get work with a railroad company.  His mother sent letters to family members asking for financial help to get him into this career, but no one responded.  Instead of giving up when this career didn’t work out, my father went on to join the national guard, work for the forest service, work as a police officer, own small businesses (i.e. upholstery, retail foods), and work as a truck driver.  Basically, my father worked hard in his life to provide for himself and his family.  Despite many setbacks in every career, he chose to keep trying and striving to succeed.  I have heard him say that “you have to do it yourself because no one is going to help you.”  That has been true for him in many ways… and yet, that hasn’t stopped him from helping others when they needed it.

For example, I remember one experience I had with my father as we sat peeling potatoes in the back room of the Fros-T-Freez.  My Uncle Ken, dad’s brother, arrived unexpectedly for a visit.  The purpose of his visit was to ask my dad to help pay for a mission.  My dad asked many questions about why Ken wanted to serve a mission, which Ken answered admirably although he was put on the spot.  I’ll never forget the Spirit I felt as I sat there peeling potatoes and listening to them talk.  I thought I would bust with pride when my dad said he would help Ken pay for a mission.  I believe this experience laid a foundation for my own choice to serve a mission several years later.

I love my dad and I love how enthused he gets about collecting things like coins/tokens as well as how creative he is with painting and wood-carving.

Happy Birthday Donna Jean

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Donna Jean Bowles

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25 March 1941

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My mother celebrates her 71st birthday TODAY!  Happy birthday to one of the most compassionate women I know.  Not only has she accomplished the great feat of raising 7 children, she currently is a loving influence on 22 grandchildren as well as the first great-grandchild born in the last year.

Donna has worked side-by-side with my father for more than 50-years.  In their early years, when dad worked as a police officer, they enjoyed entering “shooting” competitions where she almost always came out the winner.  In their later years, they owned and operated the Fros-T-Freez drive-in and High Mountain campground in Nephi, Utah.  Both she and dad are retired now, but she keeps very busy with church service and with piecing beautiful quilt tops that become immediate heirlooms when she gifts them.

One of the greatest tributes that can be paid Donna is that she honored her own parents by caring for them in their last years.  They lived a few blocks away, so my mother was able to visit them almost daily to look after their needs in their own home until her father passed away.  Then she brought her mother home to care for and was privileged to be holding her mother’s hand as she passed away.

I will always love my mother because she first loved me and believes in me.  She has successfully fulfilled the most important roles in life… daughter, sister, wife and mother.

Half Century

3rd Grade 1970-71I cannot believe I am now 50 years old… young!  This is me in 3rd grade during 1970-71.  I remember I woke up that morning and told my mom it was picture day.  She was angry because there was no time to fix my sleep-disheveled hair.  But, she made the groovy striped vest I am wearing.

We went to Disneyland to celebrate my 50th birthday!  Actually, Dean had a business trip to California so I decided to go along and we took Sarah & Amelia as well.  It was 3 days of motion sickness, lack of sleep and lots of fun!

The talks in church last Sunday were about “seasons” in our lives.  It seems we’re always looking forward to the next season… I can’t wait until this baby is born, until this baby is out of diapers, until this child goes to school, etc.  Well, I am enjoying the time we have with our 2 youngest (teenaged) daughters right now!  We loved the long drive and time spent in California with them.  Before we know it, they will be off to college and then… just around the corner… is the wonderful promise of grandchildren!!

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