14 February 2013

. . . this one's for you, dad . . .

. . . we're at that age . . .
. . . we're most likely 
to run into old friends 
at our parents' funerals . . .
. . . and every time, we say, 
"we really should get together" . . .
. . . well, apparently, the only way 
to make it finally happen 
is to have a "take charge" guy 
move back to arizona 
after 30-ish years away . . .  
. . . so ~ this past weekend, 
was the first ever 
mesa 19th ward 
non-funeral reunion . . .
. . . see? . . .

. . . i had a pretty much
 sheltered/charmed/awesome 
childhood and youth . . . 
. . . i didn't live 
in the fanciest neighborhood . . .
. . . but i grew up 
in the best ward ever . . . 
. . . i was always proud to say 
i was in 19th ward . . . 
. . . my dad was the bishop 
during most of my junior high 
and high school years . . . 
. . . all my closest friends 
were in my ward . . .

. . . i looked forward to this reunion
 almost as if it were christmas . . .
. . . and you know what? . . .
. . . people came . . .
. . . lots of people came . . .
. . . mostly the "kids" 
who were teenagers 
when my dad and royce beydler, 
who followed him, 
served as bishops . . .
. . . and our parents . . .


. . . koko {he was the boss} 
organized a brief program . . . 
. . . he introduced bishop beydler . . . 


. . . who then proceeded 
to take the mic 
and crack himself up . . .
. . . he's adorable . . .


. . . then my cute mom 
spoke on behalf of my dad . . .
. . . she used his own words, 
as written in his life story . . .


. . . confession: 
i got a little teary-eyed 
listening to her . . .

{two of the five julies ~ neuffer and dastrup. 
and yes, i will probably always refer to them by their maiden names}

. . . these two ladies are the wives 
of my dad's bishopric counselors . . .

 {edwina dastrup and patsy huber}

. . . and here is 
one of my dad's counselors . . .

{clark huber ~ he never ages}

. . . one thing we absolutely wanted 
to have happen at this reunion 
was a reenactment 
of a roadshow theme song . . .
. . . what you see pictured here 
are a lot of really good sports . . .
{we probably could've used a rehearsal or two}
. . . "the lights come on, 
the music plays at sundown, 
the people stir 
because it's not so hot" . . .

{marilyn berry, laurie lambson, kori richmond, janet berry, panda head, 
sally carpenter, deanna conrad, julie dastrup, lawanna burgess, 
lisa beydler, julie neuffer, kathy kocherhans}

. . . "come check the teeth 
and test the knees - 
not run down. 
on our camel lot" . . .
. . . and the girl to boy ratio 
at the reunion 
was about the same 
as it was for the actual roadshow 
thirty-nine years ago . . . 
. . . look how much fun 
the boys were having! . . .

{russell carroll, koko head, todd lorenzen, jeff davis, ted sherwood, 
and julie ellsworth who was turning pages for me at the piano}

. . . i bet there weren't 
five julies all the same age 
in your ward, were there? . . .
. . . four of them 
came to the reunion . . .
. . . one from prescott, 
one from spokane . . .
. . . then later that night, 
all five of them got together 
for their own after party . . .

{julies ellsworth, pomeroy, neuffer, and dastrup. not pictured - farnsworth}

. . . a great time was had by my family
 ~ brother jeff {with all his eyewear}
me and mom . . .


. . . i felt such a flood of emotion 
just walking into 
that old barkley building . . . 
. . . a lot ~ a LOT ~ of memories . . .
. . . and i was completely unprepared
 for how much 
it made me miss my dad . . .
. . . he would have loved this party . . .


. . . i bet he was there . . .


 . . . kind of cool that we partied 
on february 9th . . . 
. . . right before dad's 
valentines day birthday . . .
. . . that also would have 
made him happy . . . 
. . . we visited him 
at the cemetery 
this afternoon . . .
. . . where halleigh 
entertained the littles 
with storytime . . .


. . . and we were all surprised 
to look over 
and find tate in prayer . . .
. . . he was very serious . . .
. . . amber asked 
what he was saying . . .
. . . he said he prayed 
for grandpa great 
to please come back to earth . . .
. . . childlike faith . . .
. . . we had to have a little talk 
and explain a few things . . .

{notice the orange soda again?} 
{and my little brother's headstone.}

. . . oh, how i love 
this family of mine . . .
. . . the ones on earth . . .


. . . and the ones who've gone . . .

. . . i really looked forward to 
 the reunion last weekend . . .
. . . and i'm even more excited 
for the one someday 
in heaven! . . .

{reunion photo credits: julie ellsworth logan and deanna conrad scanlon}


5 comments:

lifeinredshoes said...

Reuniting with old friends seems more important the older we get.

P.S. Grand boy's name will be Jack :)

JULIE said...

oh my gosh stephie....that was awesome. so thankful for wonderful forever friends...like you! how totally sweet is tate ...priceless photo, priceless kiddos. happy birthday jack, you have an amazing daughter.

Unknown said...

I made promises after "my" Bishop Davis pasted away 2 1/2 years ago to many of the old timers from our Mesa 19th Ward who I have visited from time to time: We would have a reunion. Sorry it took me so long to get back here and act as catalyst to turn it into a reality. I feel confident that Jack, Tom, Ray, and Arlise were watching from the balcony with smiles as we gathered the old ward back together under a familiar roof. I can't thank you, the Julies, Panda and all who helped and more importantly CAME to reminisce, visit and smile. Hug your mom for me. She truly transported us back in time with her words and Bishop Davis'. How fortunate and blessed we all are to still have each other! What other youth group can make that claim? If there are any, they are as lucky as us.

RoeH said...

Good heavens. What a neat post. I saw several people I know or know of. Julie Pomeroy is married to my cousin. That's such a neat idea to do that. I get tired of seeing everybody at funerals now. We all say we're going to get together, but nobody ever does it.

Anonymous said...

Stephanie,
I had no idea how much we have in common. I grew up in the Logan 19th Ward and my dad was the Bishop during my teen years. We had a great youth group and I have similiar memories of roadshows and the play "All in Favor" We had two Julies in my age group and I think 3 Kathys. We need a 19th Ward (Non-funeral) reunion.
Merilee