Dec 31, 2012

Should I tell about the:
man who is addicted to meth?
lady who has been looking for a job for 4 years?
man living in his car and wants some help getting it fixed?
Andersons and their new iPhones?
4 people I called who HAVE jobs?
visit to Sylvia and her telling us her jaw pain is gone?
late afternoon delicious lunch at Durango's?

No, I won't tell about that.

I'll say that I feel blessed by the marvelous year we have had.

2 wedding celebrations,
3 weddings,
visits by grandchildren and other family members,
church responsibilities,
Allen's successful eye surgeries,
visit to see Kristi D in Seattle.

So many GOOD things.

Thank you 2012 and Heavenly Father.


On My High Horse

So, MK told me he challenged his entire family to eat a POUND of vegetables a day.

I was aghast...a POUND of vegetables every day?

But, he explained why, the reasoning, the philosophy, etc.

So, I have been thinking about food and its effects.  I don't like what I have floating around in my head.

Because I just don't know, truthfully, how much difference what we eat really makes...

to our health, our longevity, our quality of life.

My neighbors smoked for 60 years - they gave it up a year ago - and they drink vodka every night.  They are in their late 70's, look like they've lead a hard life, but they are in good health.

My cousin,  a strict adherent to the word of wisdom his entire life, has incurable cancer.

My friend never eats sweets, eats sparingly, exercises, eats very very little meat or carbohydrates, and looks like a beached whale.

A friend's father died in his mid 50's even though he was trying to be wise about his health.

So, for me, I just don't get it.  I try to eat somewhat healthy, but I eat WAY TOO MANY SWEETS, CARBS, AND FATS.

However, I don't see it having an adverse effect on my health right now.

So, for right now at least, I'll keep the salt shaker on hand and the See's chocolates on my night stand.

Thanks...glad that's off my chest.


Time to Brag

Bridger, Sayre, Oscar...

They live in California; it's too far away.

Because, as you can see, they are about as cute as can be.  And, I need them to be around more!


Why I Love My Brothers

Every year we draw names;

this year we received from Gavin and Libby...

this was the gift card attached to the huge basket of goodies:

Makes me smile and laugh and also, ENJOY the tasty treats!

Family, there just ain't nuttin' like it!


It came in her Christmas letter...

a declaration of expectations.

"If I don't expect anything, I am never disappointed," she wrote.

It's an interesting philosophy.  And, I'm trying to decide if it is a good thing or not.

Shouldn't we expect people to show gratitude?

Shouldn't we expect appreciation for something we have done?

But, then, if that is why we are doing it, that is not right either....so maybe MaryLou has a point.

Keep your expectations low, and you'll rarely be disappointed.

Every Day a GIFT

B - our dear dear friend for many years - is having heart surgery on Jan 2.

My 1st cousin has incurable cancer...his brother has a bad form of Parkinson's disease.

5 ladies in our neighborhood/ward just had surgery.

My best friend from high school just told me in her Christmas card that she now walks with a cane and that her husband is in very poor health.

I will continue to be grateful for every single day!

Each day is a precious gift....


Gratitude for Good Neighbors

Popcorn, caramel corn (3 kinds), fudge, soda, jam (2 kinds), cookies, chocolate, candle, even some wrapping paper...

so many fun, tasty, wonderful gifts.

From so many marvelous neighbors.

I am humbled.

I am grateful.


The Ghost of Christmases Past

Time to reflect on:
Christmas 2010

We (people in the apartment building and a few people from the branch) were celebrating in a little tiny room on the first floor of our apartment building in Guangzhou, China.

I'm not sure where the tree came from, but we had a tree, some reindeer ears, and a lighted sign saying, Merry Christmas.

In addition, we had the must unusual turkey dinner I have ever had.  But, it was a turkey dinner.  Turkey in China - they eat chicken, so it was a rare treat.

After dinner, we played games, and I think we sang a few songs.  There were no presents, but it was a memory that I will never forget; a group of good, good people celebrating.  And, even though not all of us were Christians, all of us realized it was a special day.  Imagine, a Christmas without one present.

And, yet, as the people in Whoville say, Christmas still came.

Christmas 2011
WOW, what an amazing Christmas this was.  Because we had visitors from China!  Allen Sun, and his 15 year old daughter, who were living in Palo Alto, California for one year, came to spend the holidays with us.

I was so nervous about what we would do with them the entire time.  I needn't have worried.  It was all just perfect.  On Christmas Eve, we ate at the Beijing Buffet (which they LOVED!), then drove to Hurricane and spent time with the Fishers.  Then we drove around to look at the lights.  The Suns were thrilled with all they saw.

Church was on Christmas morning, then we came home and opened presents that we had purchased for Allen and Cindy...they were so very appreciative of every little thing we gave them.  Just small items, but they just were so happy and grateful.  Jenni and her family came over for dinner.  It was really a perfect Christmas and we had the opportunity to tell them the origins of this wonderful holiday.

These are not ghostly memories of Christmas Past, but they are fond memories and remind me that gifts are not even needed.

The gift of the Atonement is what is important.  Family and friends are important.  I want to always realize that.

I'm grateful for the Saviour, his Atonement, and the Gospel.


Scotch and Soda....

I'll need some to help me get through the holidays; fortunately, my neighbor provided us with some....thanks, Jeanie and Jerry!


Young Women of the Little Valley 4th Ward

They brought these stockings over with those little notes of appreciation inside...

they are so great and they have incredible YW leaders.

Thank you dear wonderful girls.


The Beatles: Who Are They?

Ha!  It's a new generation.

Today, I taught a workshop class at the Employment Center.  A 50ish gentleman told how he learned to play the guitar as a very young boy and he loved music by the Beatles.  Just for fun, I asked a 20 year old in the class if she knew who the Beatles were...

"I think I've heard of them," she responded.

In the class were:
J - recovered and sober for over one year; he hated school, dropped out, then had a change of heart and is enrolled at Dixie State College...looking for a part-time job.

R - 50; life-long musician, homeless and needing work badly.

C- a home-health care nurse...she takes care of an elderly couple, but they don't pay her; just provide her room  and board.  She needs an additional part-time job for money.

B - 20ish hardowrking kid who fixed his father's ATV at age 13.  Wants to be a mechanic.

S- 20 year old who decided she had to get out from her family's negative influence...works at DI and wants to find a good job in auto mechanics.

T - 20 year old working at DI who also wants to work as an auto mechanic; he has a small engine certification.

Wonderful people; all.

Let's pray there is a job out there for them all!

Sundays in St. George

You'll find MOI in Primary on Sunday mornings - along with 140 other kids.

So, what's it like?

A Primary teacher told me on Sunday:

"I've never seen such bad-behaved kids!"

So, there you have it.  The Little Valley 4th ward ill-behaved kids.  But, soon, very soon, there will no longer be the Little Valley 4th ward; change is in the air!



It just always seems so futile!

We arrived at ten to eight; there was already a man waiting outside by the front door...by 8:15, three more men were there...wanting jobs and help from the transient bishop.

By nine a.m., I just wanted to go home.  My heart was broken...it just seems so futile and hopeless.

And, I feel so helpless.

Today, I helped a lady for two hours work on - what should have been a very simple - online job application at Pizza Hut.  She kept getting more and more angry and frustrated.

When she finally finished, she said in despair, "They won't even call me anyway!"  Oh, that made me upset.  Do they have any idea how long or how hard these people work on their applications?

Here's a positive thing that happened today.  Gordon Lyle's brother was serving a free elk dinner to all the DI and LDS Employment Center people...he has done it for four years.  What a very generous thing to do....

I'm tired.  But, I'm warm and I have food.  And, I have no bed bugs.  And, I have people around me who care.

I'm grateful.


Music - Balm for the Soul

I love the music of Christmas.

Last night we went to a concert at the tabernacle, and the last number was a sing-along of the Hallelujah chorus; it was so fun....

I'm not a singer, but it thrilled me to sing along in that glorious number.

Oh, to be able to HEAR.....what an incredible blessing!

Oh, to have such rich music in my life...what an incredible blessing!


For Hate is Strong and Mocks the Song....

of Peace on Earth
Good Will Towards Men.

So much evil in one heart.

It's hard to imagine that kind of anger, hatred, and bitterness...

May God comfort those families in Connecticut whose lives have been torn asunder this day.


The Clothes Closet

JC has lost 52 pounds since March using the Weight Watcher's Diet.  She is inspiring.  She can spout off how many points every bit of food is; she faithfully sticks to it and to drinking her 64 ounces of water.

I am impressed.

But that is not what this post is about.

Yesterday when I was visiting her, she said, "Come here, I want to show you something."

She took me down the hall, into her incredible bedroom,  then into the closet.  She wanted to show me a new jacket she just bought at the Pendleton Store.  It was plaid and very darling and it was small to fit her new frame.  Awesome.

But that is not what this post is about.

Then she proceeded to show me the tee shirts that were too big,  and the new ones that now fit.  She pointed out the jackets that no longer fit and the new ones that did.  There was a considerable size difference in what she used to wear, and what she wears now.  It was all amazing.

But, again, that is not what this post is about.

For you see, as I stood in JC's closet, I was overcome with a shocking realization.

JC's CLOTHES CLOSET was just that - a closet for clothes!

Where were the cans of food storage because the pantry can't hold them all?

Where were the St. Patrick's Day, Christmas, Easter decorations because the garage shelves are totally full of other really important stuff like a sewing machine that hasn't worked for ten years?

Where was the shelf that housed candy, nuts, and gum in case she got hungry getting dressed each morning?

Where were the emergency gifts to give people when you totally forgot their birthday, anniversary, bar mitzvah, etc.?

Where did she keep the boxes, sacks, bags of unfinished projects that were going to be completed..."when I have some time on my hands?"

Where was the huge garbage bag of clothes that go to the DI?

Oh, sure, there were some shoes and some of her husband's hats in there, but I think technically they could be defined as clothes.

So, as far as I could see in her lovely, organized closet, it was being used for one thing only:


I'm still in shock.

It was inspiring.  It was motivating.  I determined that I would get my own closet in order.  So this morning, I looked around...what could I really do to make it like JC's?

And, I did do something.

I took out a little container of gum that we got in China in 2010, and put it in my desk drawer, where I am more likely to chew it soon, as it is getting mighty old!

Ah, I feel better all ready!

Totally Made Me Smile


Terrible Tuesday

"The world of hurt" woman came in...she lives on $400 a month; she's desperate.

DP - age 58 - moved to St George to help his drug-addicted daughter.  He gave up a beloved coaching job to do this for his daughter.  She is doing much better, but he is desperate for a job.  He can't find anything.  At age 58, where do you look for a coaching job in Southern Utah?

N came in; she just left a polygamist sect and needs help to enter the real world.

B has been disowned by his parents after leaving his mission, getting a felony conviction, etc.  He needs help, but what to do?

We met M; a distinguished intelligent 40ish man who was fired from his lucrative job in Los Angeles.  His boss didn't want him telecommuting any more.  He wanted M to be available all hours.  M needs a job, but won't be able to make anything near what he was earning in LA or in his field.

All day long, I hear the stories; all day long, I want to weep.

I am in a world of hurt for so many people.....

Missionary Moments

Mondays are busy.  We didn't have time for lunch.....

Today, 3 young men came in looking for jobs....

2 of them have been off their missions for one week.

1 is going on a mission in three months.

A 65 year-old lady said to me on the phone,  "I'm in a world of hurt for money."

I wish I had a magic wand.


Christmas Goodie Time...

so here came Lexie and Paige...

can you even imagine two cuter little neighbor kids delivering warm chocolate chip cookies on a Sunday evening?

I can't.


Just a Thought....

The craft-making mother had posted a picture on Facebook of her turkey decorations.  They were cute.

Sitting by the little turkey table decorations was her little 3 year old.

It made me laugh because today in Primary, that kid was such a little TURKEY.

Hee.  Hee.


Library Lover

I love a library (I like book stores also, but things aren't FREE there!)

It's like having your own personal store to just pick and choose.

It's such an amazing concept.

I hardly ever use the local library much any more.

But, I'm so glad it's there; I'm so glad it's essentially free.

Okay, you get the idea...

Libraries - one of my favorite places.

Remembering My Dear Dad

I saw this picture on Facebook today while looking for something else. Seeing my father in the picture at the wedding of Nathaniel and Jeanine reminded me what a wonderful father I have....

  He was so faithful about attending family events.

So, this picture made me happy/sad.

Interesting, huh, to have those emotions all at once.

(Looking at this picture and remembering the time frame, I just remembered something else about this day  in history.

Jenni was trying to make a decision about moving to Hurricane or to stay in Bountiful at her current job.  She asked Preston for his advice at the wedding luncheon, and he told her to: Definitely go for it....

She and Brent took that advice, moved to Hurricane, and as far as I'm concerned, it has been a marvelous blessing in so very many ways!)

Now, back to this picture; Dad, you always inspire me.  Thanks for always being there - literally and figuratively.


There's One Born Every Minute....

a sucker that is!

And, I just got suckered in a scheme...

I'll never be critical again when I hear about people getting duped.

So, here's the deal...


it is.

Just to Prove It Really Happened!

It's rare, extremely rare;

like winning the lottery.

But, here's proof;

I got lucky once, at least.



Missionary Moments

I never like seeing people out of work.

But, it's even worse when it is someone I know personally.

So, today, when JB's name showed up on my list, I felt a sick, sinking feeling in my stomach.  And, the reason he lost his job was so stupid and so unfair...what has happened to loyalty for employees?

Then, a man came in and is desperate for a job.  He lost his job on a Monday; the company went belly up.  On Tuesday, his son left for a mission.....the following week, his wife asked for a divorce.  He said his son is really struggling on his mission because of his parent's divorce...well, of course he would be struggling.

F came in - he's wacky, but he's polite.  Apparently, he sleeps at Wal*Mart; not actually IN the store, but in a place that is not totally outside either.  He doesn't like the homeless shelter; bed bugs.  Lots of other have complained about that also.

SB called to tell me about a job opening as a secretary in his office.  He posted it somewhere and in two days had over 160 applicants!  He can't wade through them all, there are so many.

M came in very excited; she got the job at DI.  She has lost her home, car, driver's license, children -because of drugs.  But, she is working very hard to turn her life around; this is a start...a new job at DI.  She will do well.

Randy taught the career workshop course; he is beyond fantastic!  It was so exciting, energizing and helpful...there were a lot of people in there and they ALL need specific jobs...

I get so discouraged.

As we left and got in the car, I told Allen that I was quitting the mission and going back to family history.

But, of course, that isn't true.  I'll be back there on Monday morning.  And, I'll be eager to help out if I can.


Letter to the Editor

December 3, 2012

This letter is in response to the person in Saturday’s VENT column who wondered “why we never hear of the LDS having free meals for the needy and homeless on Thanksgiving and Christmas.”  

Probably the best answer that could be given is that the LDS church is very quietly busy 365 days a year giving help to the needy and the homeless.  

From 1985 to 2011, the church rendered assistance in 179 countries totalling $1.4 billion.  The church has provided 63,377 tons of food, 14,345 tons of
medical supplies, 93, 196 tons of clothing and 11.1 million hygiene, newborn, and school kits around the world.

After every major disaster, the church has quietly stepped in - with materials and people - to provide assistance.  

The LDS church has 143 storehouses where people of all faiths can get temporary help with food needs.  The church helps people - of all ages, races, religions - with getting jobs at 327 employment resource centers. 

Additionally the church’s top humanitarian initiatives include clean water, vision treatment, wheelchair provision, neonatal resuscitation, and disaster relief. Other initiatives include immunizations, family enrichment programs, and family food production. In 2008, LDS Humanitarian Services provided aid to 3.3 million people in 122 countries, and since 1985 help has been given to 23 million people.

So, dear Vent reader, wonder no more; the members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints are very very busy indeed.  They donate their time, their money, their efforts to help people - of all ages, religions, nationalities, creeds.  And, it is not just done on Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Come join us in our efforts to make the world a better place.  I think you will be amazed at what the LDS church really does after all.

Loni Hackworth

Monday Missionary Moments

WOW, it was SLOW today.

Totally surprising.  Mondays are always so very busy!

But, I was able to call some people and to input some jobs.  It's amazing how much there is to learn and how much I'm always forgetting.

A lady came in today to see the transient bishop; it was so very sad.  She had 2 boys with her; maybe ages 8 and 10...they looked so disheveled and in need of care and attention.  And, why aren't they in school?

She didn't want anything except to warn us of the impending earthquake in California.  She told Sister S that she was Jesus.  Sister S (who is a therapist), said she was either manic or scizophrenic.  It was just sad.

WB came in again; he badly wants a job.  He's so - well, just different.  It was a challenge to help him fill out an on-line application.

After the mission, we went to Costco; OUCH...we try to save money, but going into that store is


The Goal...

A few months ago, I set a goal to go to the temple every other week.

It's a noble goal.

And, it's amazing how easy it is to make legitimate excuses why I can't go:

Primary meeting,
Visiting teaching,
Errands to run,
Visiting Sylvia,
Eating out,

as you can see, the list includes some important items also.... but some are really not that important in the grand scheme of things.

But, I'm trying to put temple attendance as a high priority.  I try to keep that goal.

And, today, it was especially poignant for me as I did work for my mother's first cousin.

That is a marvelous feeling.

Farewell to Ding Dongs Nov 2012

Have you ever remembered eating something that was just so delicious?

In your mind the memory of that food evokes strong feelings of deliciousness.

Well, when I heard that TWINKIES were goners, I immediately went to buy some.  It was 10:30 on a Saturday morning at Wal*Mart but they were SOLD OUT!

So, I bought another food that evoked the same fond delicious memories; DING DONGS.

With some of our family together after playing pickle ball, we went for one last taste of these iconic snack foods.

I bit into it.



This was what I had once thought was so delicious!  Boy, have my taste buds changed and refined over the years.  It was like eating a ball of wax; chocolate wax.  It was - in a word -


I threw the rest of it away.

So, now I understand why Hostess and Ding Dongs are goners....

Farewell Hostess.

Hello See's Dark Chocolates!

Cousins Coincidence

Dixie texted; she wanted to meet us for lunch. Dixie is Allen's 2 or 3 COUSIN; who knows, but anyway, they are related.  She is won...