Monday, December 29, 2008

A Sneak Peek to some of the videos of A Brand New Year

Below is a widget where you can watch some of the videos of A Brand New Year.
Nick appears in the segment entitled "Steadfast and Immovable"

Monday, December 22, 2008

Merry Christmas to all!

Hope you all enjoy lots of time together! We spent last weekend playing in the snow in Leavenworth, which was very cold, but so much fun. Merry Christmas everyone!

Love, Carrie

Friday, December 19, 2008

Goodbye to Rex

We need to mention, out of respect, the passing of our great friend Rex, our golden retriever / husky mix, on Dec. 13. He would have been 15 years old in about April. A sad few days for us since. The picture is from Christmas 2007.

Friday, December 12, 2008


Matt and Lorie came to Seattle this week for a Killers and Death Cab for Cuties concert, and so we got the chance to tend their four youngest one night this week. We invited Carrie and Emma over for a chance to get the cousins together, and got this picture of Emma, Joelle, Ashton, and Sage (I think I got the spelling right). Riley was downstairs playing video games with Zach, and these kids were watching Disney's updated Winnie the Pooh series, which I find a big disappointment over the old Pooh stuff with the voice of Stirling Holloway. But then, they don't seem to mind, so you can tell they were having a great time.

It was fun to get to see them, and have Emma get a chance to see her Montana cousins. We hope they come back soon!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Original "Twilight" Screenplay

I know you've been reading the books, and waiting impatiently for the movie. Well, here's a link to the original, but rejected screenplay. You'll want to look to see what was left out, what was added, and some original takes on the characters and their development.

Right. Go look. I liked this one better than what I saw Saturday night with the family.

Friday, October 31, 2008

A brand New Year

It's seems like we are always to busy to add anything to the family blog, but I wanted to let everyone know about a new church production that Nick and Demi have been blessed to be a part of. It's called a Brand New Year, a DVD that will go out to wards and stakes throughout North America to be used as a New Years Eve celebration. It's different than anything that has been done for the youth before. The music will be available for downloading on a new site created just for the youth. They're recording the DVD in the Conference Center three days next week, with a crowd of 21 thousand youth each night watching. Nick is one of the Hosts and Demi is part of the choir.

So make sure you watch for it in your wards it will be well worth it, and not just because there's a couple of Menendez's in it.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Emma turned 3!

It was a fun day, we had cake, explored a pumpkin patch and played dolls. I can't believe she's already 3, it was so nice to have Shane home from work for the day. I hope you are all enjoying fall where you are!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Iantha, Missouri

Found this picture recently, of particular interest to "some of us". The town is Iantha, Missouri, in southwestern Missouri, and its a real place, not "Photoshopped".

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Heber Nephi Folkman Trampled by Horses!

Our grandfather, Heber Nephi Folkman, survived the Galveston, TX 1900 hurricane, but jhis close adventures with danger were not through.

A couple of years after returning from his mission, living in Ogden, Utah, he was out on a date with our future grandmother, Kathryn Nelia King, and got into a tussle with his team of horses that landed him in the Ogden Standard Examiner for August 4, 1905. I've attached the clip here, but it may not be too readable.

Here is the text: "Heber Folkman, a barber, was painfully but not seriously injured at Plain City, Tuesday evening, by being knocked over and trampled by a team of horses that became frightened while he was untying them preparatory to returning to the city. A young lady, who was in the buggy at the time of the accident, fell into a faint from which she was not revived for several hours.

It appears that Folkman and the lady after being out driving for some time decided to call upon Mr. Folkman's brother, who lives at Plain City. At the conclusion of the visit while Folkman was in the act of untying the horses and after he had assisted the lady into the carriage, the horses became frightened and in plunging forward struck the man with their feet knocking him to the ground where they trampled upon him.

The screams of the woman, who became thoroughly frightened, attracted the attention of some pedestrians who were near by and they rushed to Folkman's aid. Folkman was still beneath the horses, from which position he was rescued.

After the injured man had been made as comfortable as possible a physician was telephoned for. Upon the doctor's arrival a hasty examination revealed a dislocated shoulder, a fracture of the wrist, and a number of minor injuries, which, though painful, are not considered of a serious nature. Aside from a bad fright the lady was none the worse for her experience in the buggy."

Things apparently all turned out well, as just about 9 weeks later, Heber Folkman and Kathryn King were married on October 5, 1905, and later moved to Jerome, Idaho, where Dad was born and raised.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Heber Nephi Folkman and the Galveston Storm of 1900

Our grandfather, Heber Nephi Folkman, was called to the Southwestern States mission in December of 1899, and arrived in the mission field later that month. He kept a journal for his entire mission. Some days it was quite detailed, others days less so. As I recently found the missing pages that talked about the hurricane of 1900 that was so devastating, I thought I would share some of the story of the summer leading up to the storm, and his full entries for the storm and its aftermath. Grandfather and his companion, Elder Dana, worked in Eastern Texas for several months, and then were called with Elders Norton and Kirkpatrick to labor in Galveston.

Elders Folkman and Dana arrived in Galveston on the 31st of May. He had never seen the ocean before. “I seen the Ocean for the first time in my life it is quite a site to see the waves roll up on the shore one after another never seazing like they were mad because they could not go on but had to go back to the Ocean to be met by another which when they would meet the roar would be as loud as many Lions coming to gather in battle.”

After visiting the mayor’s office and the chief of police to get permission to proselyte and a promise of protection, the elders divided up the city and set to work. Their day normally consisted of tracting in the morning, visiting 50 to 75 home on average, then spending the afternoon in studying and resting during the worst heat of the day. In the evening, they tried to hold street meetings, or get the local churches to grant permission to meet in their houses of worship. The work, however, was not productive, and the local ministers turned down their requests. Hardly anyone they contacted while tracting had any interest, and their street meetings drew little attention.

Heber said in his journal on June 6th, “The people generally in the City don’t care much for religion is all they care for is making money and have not time for to listen to the gospel.” Indeed, Galveston at the time rivaled Houston in shipping and commerce, and had more millionaires per square mile than Rhode Island [1]. Often, in the cooler evenings or on Saturdays, Elder Folkman and his companions would walk down to the wharf and watch the ships loading and unloading cotton, cement, wheat, and other commodities. They also visited the beaches on the Southeast side of the island, landlocked Utah boys fascinated by the constantly rolling waves.

On June 8th, he noted “They are very wicked in this city they don’t care for religion and especily Mormonism. We receive poor treatment as a rool.” They had taken lodging at a boarding house for $8 a month, with permission from their mission leadership, but were expected to try and find “entertainment”, someone with whom they could stay without charge. This, too, proved difficult. On June 13th, the elders received a letter from (mission) Pres. Jos. G. Duffin reminding them to “leave their room, and go out and depend on the Lord to open up the way for us to get entertainment.”

One promising lead pointed to a family of Mormons in town that turned out to be “Jospehites”, members of the Reorganized Church, later the Community of Christ. Elder Folkman said “but they did not bleive in any thing we tried to get an invitation to stop with them but we did not get it.”

On June 18th, Elder Folkman noted that “the people are very bitter they will not talk to us they think we are here after the women…”. A newspaper article later in July called the Elders “pimps” and much worse that Elder Folkman chose not to record.

Tracting on June 22nd found a 79 year old woman, Mrs. Nunn, who had joined the church many years before. Her last contact with the church had been in 1856, with Elder John Taylor. They spent some time talking with her, but her family did not approve of the Mormon missionaries, and they continued looking for a place to stay for free. She seemed firm in the faith to them, and they occasionally visited with her.

Heat and mosquitoes were also a problem. Elder Folkman and his companions often retreated to the beach to cool off, noting that “it is fine bathing when the waves are large the rougher the sea the nicer bathing.” Often, the mosquitoes made sleeping difficult, and the heat made the work challenging. In August, Elder Folkman talked about being laid up with the “summer complaint”, almost certainly malaria. Later in his mission, he writes about taking quinine to calm the chills.

After July 4th, they gave up the rented lodging, and got temporary housing with a family for a few weeks, and then found another house that would take them for a longer time a 712 29th Street, near the high ground at the center of town, and near the water works building. The home was owned by an older woman, Mrs. Daniels. But the work continued to unfruitful, and Elder Folkman’s journal often records reports like “Went out tracting visiting 60 families met with no success” or “Went out tracting finding the people about the same.”

Elders Dana and Kirkpatrick were transferred, and Elders Larson and Hunstman replaced them. In August, they were able to get a few appointments to teach, but little came of them, and on August 17th, sold the only copy of the Book of Mormon that they were able to place all summer. After a break for the Labor Day holiday, the routine started again, with similar results. On Friday September 7th, they contacted 83 families, then spent the rest of the day in studying.

Saturday, September 8th brought a change:

Could not work on account of storm could not go out of the room and at night the water from the Bay (Galveston Bay was only 7 or 8 blocks north of their house, the water being pushed by a strong north wind [2]) came up all over town we had to get out of the room and move up the stairs it was 4 feet of water in the room and the wind so strong that it was blowing houses down all over town the people all moved out but us Elders and the Lord spared us while the city was half destroyed.

Sunday Galveston Sept 9. Still on the (curb?) after one of the most terrific storms that ever pased over the country the sight that my gaze this morning was terriable over half the city destroyed and the other very badly damaged the water and wind to geather played havock the report is the loss of life will be in the thousands they are hauling them in by the wagon load food and water scarce as the water works system was destroyed and a good many cisterns filled (presumably with sea water).

Monday Galveston Sept 11 (certainly the10th but incorrectly dated in his journal). Went round to see the sights it is terrible to behold they are hauling in dead bodies by the wagon loads they have had to resort to sinking them in the sea to dispose of them they are in such a condition that they can not keep them so they take them by the ship loads and take them out in the sea and sink them rich and poor white and black. I see many bodies lying amongst the timbers and where they had lodged we tryied to get a boat to take us to Houston they wanted $5.00 a head for 25 miles and we desided to wait another day and see if we cant go cheeper we cant walk out for both bridges are washed a way so we have to do the next best.

Tues. Galveston Sept 11-1900 went to the warf and got a chance to go to Houston by ship went back and got our grips just got back in time to catch the boat we left at 10:30 AM arriving in Houston at 6.30 PM went and got a room at the Capitol House the fare from Galveston was $2.50.

Word was just beginning to get out from Galveston about the terrible toll the hurricane had taken. The missionaries would have been among some of the first people to arrive from Galveston since the storm. Tuesday also was the first day that officials from Houston were able to see firsthand the destruction and loss of life. The more accurate reports were labeled fantastic and unbelievable in Houston, which had received some wind and rain, but not the full power of the storm. Elder Folkman’s journal continues:

Houston Wednesday Sept. 12-1900 Went to breakfast then took in the sights met a Mr. Daniels son of the Lady that we was rooming with in Galveston he was glad to see us to learn of his mother he invited us to take dinner with him at the hotel where he was staying.

Houston Thursday Sept. 13-1900 Went to the PO received no mail spent the day in looking round the excitement is great here yet from the storm they are coming from Galveston (line missing).”

On Friday, Elder Folkman and his companions ran into two other missionaries who were looking for them, and talked with them late into the night. Elder Folkman and his companions were to start for Austin County for a mission conference, a distance of about 160 miles, which took them several days on foot.

The great hurricane of 1900 took an estimated 6,000 to 10,000 lives in Galveston and the surrounding areas. The storm surge, little understood at the time, was magnified by the fast moving northbound category 4 or 5 storm with sustained winds of 150 mph, and gusts of perhaps as much as 200 mph, from the northeast, piling up a huge wave of water. The storm surge was at least 20 feet, and some estimates put it as much as 30 feet or more, surmounting the highest point of land in Galveston by several feet. The surf on the Gulf Coast side of Galveston smashed buildings, homes, and a beachside streetcar trestle into a moving wall of debris that crushed everything in its path as it cut halfway across the island city.[3] No word is given if Sister Nunn, the elderly Mormon woman the missionaries met, survived the storm. Her name does not appear in the list of casualties, either.

Trains were swept from their tracks and all their passengers drowned. Soldiers at one of the low-lying coastal forts on the east end of the island mostly drowned, firing off their cannons at the height of the storm in a desperate cry for help. People who took refuge in the strongest homes and public buildings found the wind, water, and debris destroying even large brick and cement structures.

The storm was only vaguely forecasted as a slight storm by the US Weather Bureau, but recorded as a major hurricane by their Cuban counterparts. Hurricane alerts were not allowed to be declared by local officials, and had to be cleared through headquarters in Washington, DC. By the time the national offices of the Weather Bureau began to be aware of a major Gulf Coast storm, telephone and telegraph lines were already down from Galveston to the mainland. [4].

Elder Folkman finished his mission in March of 1902, still suffering from the effects of malaria. He and his companions found much more fruitful ground in Eastern Texas, baptizing many and working with others who had previously joined the church. By the time he passed through Galveston shortly before his return to Utah, he pointed out to the one or two new members of the church in the city the house where he had survived the storm, one of the few to not be heavily damaged or destroyed. He returned to Utah, married and moved to Southern Idaho, working in various jobs. He died in 1947 at the age of 78.

Source Notes:

  1. Isaac’s Storm, Erik Larson, Vintage Books, 2000

  2. ibid. A combination of a strong north wind as the hurricane approached and the storm surge from the south pushed the shallow waters of Galveston Bay on the north side of the city to meet the onrushing 20 to 30 foot surge from the Gulf of Mexico.

  3. ibid.

  4. ibid. Changes were made to allow local offices of the Weather Bureau to give major storm warnings as a result of the lack of warning for this storm.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Peach Days Parade in Brigham City

We took this photo after the Peach Days Parade on Sept 6 in Brigham City. (The peaches are wonderful this year, by the way.)

The Sons of Utah Pioneers have this handcart and usually enter it in the Peach Days Parade. This year Linda and Steve's family agreed to "staff" the handcart, so after Linda ran her 10K in the morning, she immediately changed clothes and joined the rest of us for the parade: Mark, Amanda and friend Frank, Steve, Ethan, Spencer, Grandpa, Linda and Anna. (Kimberly had a conflict and couldn't be there, and Grandma Iantha was staffing her Senior Center booth on the courthouse square.)

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Labor Day

Labor Day here was fun. We tried to get everyone together to go hike to the Ice Caves at Big Four, which we have done a few times before. It's pretty spectacular, but the bridge was washed out, which would have required wading a knee deep river. None of us were very prepared to do that, so we hiked to Boardman Lake instead, about one mile up through old growth forests. Carrie and Emma, Zach, Luke and Lindsay, and Kate and I all did the hike. Earlier, we got Pete and Becca to meet us for breakfast, but they could not go on the hike with us.

Emma had a great time, but she mostly did the hike on somebody's shoulders. As you can see, it was fairly cloudy to start, but the day ended as sunny, but never all that warm.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Zach got his Drivers License Back! or "Why Body Shops and Insurance Companies are a diabolical alliance!"

Fortunately, Zach, and the driver of the car he hit, are fine. No airbags deployed, no police issued any tickets, but we do have an appointment with the insurance adjuster today.

For those who have not heard, Zach is completely free of the episodes that caused us such anxiety over the last year and a half. The most recent neurologist says they never were seizures, and he shouldn't have issues ever again.

We've often given our cars nicknames. The 1978 Toyota Celica with bullet hole rust was the Toyolet, the 1992 Subaru we inherited from Peter was the Superpoo. Our Impala was from day one "The Impaler", and now it has lived up to its name!

Meanwhile, we had just fixed the right rear fender. A lady backed into me in the Lowe's parking lot the week before Tom and Jamie's wedding, leaving some scuff marks, and a dent just a little bigger than the palm of your hand. I took it to a body shop for an estimate. They promptly reeled off a quote for $2,400! I couldn't believe it. Her insurance company surely would have paid it, but I just could not bring myself to claim it. One of my coworkers has a body pulling tool, and in an hour on a Friday night, we pulled the dent without leaving anything but the slightest crease, only visible if you get really close and know it's there. I gave Don a $100 Starbucks card, and I'll do some polishing by hand to fix the scuffs, but $2,400? Give me a break. The lady was more than happy to pay for Don's Starbucks card.

My guess is that this one is worth $3,000 to $4,000, and may actually prompt the insurance company to total the car. I've looked online, and I can buy the parts for about $600, and then just need to get it painted. The body shop, I'm sure, will quote over $1,200 for the parts. If they total it, I'll buy it back for salvage, do as much work myself, pay off the loan, and not have to deal with the deductible.

Just doing my part to keep the cost of auto insurance down.

Friday, July 4, 2008

What we've been up to in June

June was a busy month for us! First was Zach's 16th birthday. A couple weeks ago Troy spoke in church, Zach blessed the sacrament, and Josh passed it. I was a proud mom that day! (I should also mention that Josh turned 13 in May, so we've got two teens in the house.)

Then we had Cub Scout Day Camp. I think the scouts all had a great time, and my family and friends made up 1/2 of the staff, so we had a great time too. My mom came all the way from Utah to help out, which I appreciated so much. She taught a craft class every day, Troy taught Chess and Ping Pong Cannons, and Ian taught the Whittling class. I got to boss everyone around and make sure all the classes were running smoothly.

After camp I started my new job. I'm now the Brand Logistics Expert at Gap Kids & Baby, which basically means I'm one of the managers. I love the job, the people I work with are the best.

Then we had Sophie's school play, The Little Red Hen, and her dance recital, which was adorable. She took both tap and jazz this year, and got to dance in 3 of the recital's numbers. She's growing up so fast! (I'm still waiting for pictures from the recital, I'll post them later.)

Then I got called to be in YW, just in time to go to Girl's Camp. The Girl's Camp was in the same place as the YM's Scout camp the week before, and the girls got to do all the things the boys did, which was pretty cool. We hiked Mt. Yale, one of the 14ers in the Collegiate Peaks, and also went rafting on the Arkansas River. When the Scouts climbed Mt. Yale, Josh was the first one at the summit. Our bishop said that Josh practically ran to the top, they were all amazed. I was very proud of him, especially after climbing it myself. It's a tough hike, very steep, and is a Level 2. About half of the YW made it to the top. The group of YW I was with didn't, but it was close, just 500 feet shy of the summit. There were thunderstorms coming in, and the remaining 500 feet was very steep and you had to climb over boulders, so it was a tough call to turn around but we had to keep the girls safe. It was probably the hardest thing I've ever done, besides giving birth.

Troy came up for the rafting trip, which was on the Arkansas River. We went through Brown's Canyon and about 10 rapids and suck holes. The water was really high from all the snowmelt, but we wore wetsuits so we didn't care. It was so much fun! In most of the pictures I look like a drowned rat, but it's hard to smile and look relaxed as you go through class 4 rapids! I really did have a great time.
Hope you're all enjoying the holiday weekend! Ian's here, we had a BBQ, and we're off to a concert and see the fireworks.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Zach Update

At the risk of alienating Zach, but in the interest of keeping you informed, I'll give you a quick update on Zach's health issues, which is good news. No pictures, though.

After almost a three month wait, we finally got Zach back in with his doctor at the infamous HarborView Medical Center. The doctor apologized (!) for not getting back to us sooner, and also apologized that one of the residents that saw Zach while he was in for his tests didn't call us. I think he also apologized for two or three other things, plus just general apologies as well. That's more apologies from one doctor in one visit than I've heard from all doctorrs in the entire rest of my life, I believe.

Bottom line, he said that Zach was not having epileptic seizures, and the episodes of dizziness, partial loss of sight, etc, probably were related to some anxieties exacerbated by his depression, and that he was often holding his breath, which brought on the heart rate increases. Kate had observed a little of this, but it was a revelation for Zach. Good news, since that day, he has been aware of the breath holding issue, and has controlled it himself, and has not had any episodes for 5 or 6 days now. Needless to say, we are thrilled, and he is too. Driving is going to come back into his immediate future, but he is more excited about that than Kate and I are. He still is in some counseling for the anxieties, but he is happier than he has been for a year, I think.

Thanks for everyone's thoughts and prayers over this last year. He is through with school for the summer, and working at the family business, Sears, in their lawn and garden to earn money for school in the fall. We'll keep you posted.


Thursday, June 19, 2008

Aunt Retta & Ethelyn

Grandma Doris gave me a book of greeting cards she and Grandpa received the first 7 years or so of their marriage. (I think it's an old greeting card sample book from King's that she pasted their cards in.) I love to look through the old cards, and it's fun to see the little notes Grandma and Grandpa wrote to each other. I recognize some of the names, but most of the people who sent the cards are unknown to me.

After reading Dad's post, I knew I had seen Aunt Retta & Ethelyn's names somewhere. So I got the book out and found this little Christmas card. Thought you'd like to see it. If we get together for a family reunion, I'll bring the book so everyone can enjoy looking through the cards.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Busy Summer Time

Apparently we are all pretty busy these days, as the Blog posts have been few and far between. But I enjoy seeing everything that gets put up. Thanks Linda and Kevin for your recent posts. Today (Friday June 13 -- oops, I hadn't noticed!) I'll be flying to Seattle where I will meet Iantha. She has been in Denver herding 150 Cub Scouts with Mary Anne (and Ian, as well, I hear). Iantha and I will show up at Tom's wedding on Saturday, but we have to return home to Brigham City on Saturday evening.

By the way, Kevin, where did you find that old picture of Dad and us on the Blogsite? I don't remember having ever seen it before you posted it. Would you please send me a scan of it?

Here's a blurry old photo I found recently in a box with a lot of Mom and Dad's letters and birthday and Christmas cards in it. If anyone has time to read through the letters looking for anything of interest, speak up.

This photo shows our great-grandmother, Charlotte Emma Senior King, the elderly lady in the front, and standing behind her over her left shoulder is her daughter, Grandma Kate King Folkman. Next to her, in the hat, is Grandpa Heber Folkman, though you can't see much of his face. Most of the girls in the picture would be various Great Aunts to Kevin, David and I. The youngest girl at the back of the photo is probably Aunt Merlyn, who lived in Sparks, NV, at the same time that Mom and Dad lived in Reno. The big guy on the left is Wilmer Rigby, who married one of Grandma Folkman's sisters, and settled in Idaho where they have a lot of family under the Rigby name.

When I was young, I wasn't very interested in all this, but as time goes on and no one remembers these people any more, I have become more interested in these things. On the Saturday before Memorial Day we put flowers, as we always do, on Grandpa and Grandma Hunter's graves in Logan Cemetery. Next to them is a family that I thought no one would still remember, as they have no descendents, but we knew the mother of the family as Aunt Rhetta. I wonder if David recalls visiting her in Logan when we were very young. Her only child, a son, was killed in WWII, shot down over Holland, and his body not recovered, as far as I know. She gave me a really "neat" hand-tooled leather belt that had belonged to him, during a visit when I was probably about 10 years old. Anyway, while we were there cleaning up the grave sites, an elderly woman came over to us and asked who we were, and I was very surprised to learn that she was a niece of Retta from another side of the family, a different wife of Grandma Mae Smeath Hunter's father, I believe, and we visited for awhile about things. She mentioned names I had long forgotten, such as Aunt Ethelyn, with whom Retta lived in her last years. The woman's married name is Jensen, but we were both surprised to find someone who still remembered those ancient days.

We also took some flowers down to Mom and Dad's graves, as we hadn't been there for quite awhile.

-- Robert

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Valentine Family Vacation

Hello, family! Just wanted to say hello, since I haven't for a while. Our family just got back from a trip to California and we had a great time. We drove through Reno on the way west so the kids could see the apartments where Grandma and Grandpa lived, the Federal Building where Grandpa worked, and the famous downtown Reno lights. Then we visited Martinez/Pleasant Hill to show the kids where their mom grew up in California, did all the touristy stuff in San Fransisco, headed south to Disneyland, hung out at the beach, and visited Sea World in San Diego. We decided to go all out and do everything we could in 10 days because this may be the last vacation we take with all seven of us together before kids are in college, starting careers, getting married or going on missions. That thought is very hard to grasp, but is a reality nontheless. Amanda will be a senior in highschool this year, so next summer her schedule may not permit a big family vacation with us if she starts college right away. Anyhow, it was great fun. Love to you all!

P.S. If anyone would like a photo of the building where Grandpa worked in Reno for family history purposes, I have one.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Small World, part 2

I asked a few questions of my brothers, and also of the researcher in Texas who has a copy of Heber Nephi Folkman's missionary journal, and it appears that our cousin Alan's oldest son, Kevin, married an Odom from Texas while he was at BYU. Other members of her family recognized the Folkman name, and Alan apparently provided a copy of HNF's missionary journal to this graduate student who knew the Odom's, which is how he got a copy, and recognized my story about the Galveston hurricane. I still plan on getting a copy of those particular pages to my friend who posts about early Mormons of not such huge importance, but who have fascinating stories anyway. I'll also post those excerpts here for anyone to read. Meanwhile, if you are interested, this is a great book about the whole storm, and how it changed the US Weather Bureau forever.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Small World

From time to time, I read and occasionally comment on a couple of LDS-themed blogs, and have done so for about a year and a half now. It's an interesting diversion during the day, and rarely takes up any time. However, on one of them, there is a woman who has been doing some interesting posts about little known pioneers and others from Mormon History. She's done several at Times and Seasons, and one in particular caught my attention. She was talking about a missionary who went missing in Alabama in 1888. Southern States Mission President William Spry, later governor of Utah, sent a James Tilman to try and find out what had happened to the missionary. Tilman, a southern native, traveled undercover, and was able to eventually find the body, buried in a paupers grave, that could be identified as the missing missionary.

Ardis Parshall, the writer of this post, was trying to find out about Tilman, and said that later in the 1899 to 1900 time frame, he may have been in East Texas with a family by the name of Odom. That made me think about Heber Nephi Folkman, and his mission to Texas, so I was going to offer to search through HNF's missionary journals, of which I think Robert, David, and I all have copies of, to see if there was any mention of James Tilman. However, when I posted that my grandfather had been in Galveston for the great hurricane in 1900, someone piped up that he thought he knew who my grandfather was, and even his birthday. Turns out that Heber Nephi later found the children of the original Odoms, and got them baptized. I'm not sure where, and I'm trying to find out, but apparently Heber Nephi's missionary journals exist in a copy somewhere else that this other person has read, and was very familiar with. He said that in East Texas, Folkman was a name held in much reverence.

At any rate, Ardis wants to post about the missionaries who were in Galveston for the storm, and the records indicate that there may have been three others besides Heber Nephi. I'm going to try and dig out my copy and forward a scan of it to her, but she also thinks that the originals, or at least a copy of them, should be in the church archives. Not a bad thought, but a small world indeed.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Carrie and Shane took Emma to the Seattle Temple the other day to get some pictures, an unusually nice day for this April, so having only one grandchild to brag about, I thought I'd share it with you all.


Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Zach will probably kill me for this, but we haven't much talked about his issues, and I thought you should all know. Zach spent from Thursday morning till Monday evening at HarborView hospital in Seattle (the inspiration for the hospital in Gray's Anatomy, I believe). It's your typical big city hospital, with the major regional trauma center, metal detectors at the doors for after hours visitors, and $4 an hour parking for everybody.

Zach, as most of you know, started having trouble with scleroderma several years back. It's an autoimmune disease closely related to Rheumatoid Arthritis, and in fact was diagnosed as that originally. It's potentially serious, but his case was mild and "superficial", which means that it only affected the bones of his right hand, and some slight discoloration and thinning of the skin on his right arm and shoulder. It took 6 years to get that diagnosis, and then 2 years of medication got it under control and in remission. He should, if the general history of this disease holds up, not have a problem with it ever again. We all hope.

Last spring, Zach started having what he described as "head rushes" or lightheadedness. While we were in Utah last June, he had what Carrie immediately recognized as a short seizure, some slight shaking of his arms and legs, that lasted about 5 seconds. That prompted a quick trip to the emergency room, but a CAT scan and MRI showed nothing wrong, so we started on a long round of diagnostics and tests. We spent a couple of months chasing heart related problems, but nothing showed up, even with wearing a monitor 24 hours a day for 3 weeks. We finally got him into Children's Medical Center's neurology group, as he was already a Children's patient for his scleroderma. They began a series of tests, which ended up with a 24 hour EEG test, that showed he was having mild seizures of an indeterminate nature and cause.

We've tried several different medications since last fall, one of which he was allergic to, and another that aggravated a previously unknown tendency towards depression, and really put him in a tailspin for a couple of weeks. The current situation is that he spent the last three months in Bellingham going to school up there, and continuing to have minor seizures. Since the seizures cause a short loss of vision and balance for maybe 5 seconds, he has been unable to drive, which really sucks for a twenty year old. A lot of his life has been on hold while we deal with this issue.

As he is now twenty, Children's wanted to transition him to an adult program, so that's why we ended up at HarborView. The head of the Neurology department there said he wasn't sure that he was having real seizures, so they brought him back in for an extended test. Now, normally Zach has the seizures while he is doing things, like watching TV, or playing video games, playing scrabble or card games with the family, or other times when he is engaged and active. He never has them at night, and almost never when he is lying down. As you may have guessed, the extended EEG required him to stay in bed, and not move around. As a result, he registered very few episodes while he was in that part of the hospital, so the doctor decided to do the whole cardiac thing again, and moved him to the cardiac care unit. Both wards were filled with interesting people, as you would expect from a large, public hospital. Stories for another day. End result, we know there is nothing wrong with his heart, or the veins and arteries leading to his head, but we know it at a much higher level now. Sigh.

So after finding nothing, he was released last night, and is back at school at BCC here in Bellevue today. Still can't drive, and is looking for part time work. About the only negative involved in all of this is that he can't drive, and he can't (or we can't, and the doctors can't) seem to figure out what is causing this. I suspect there are more tests in his future, but your thoughts and prayers are all welcomed.

So his heart is fine, and we are all trying to figure out what is going on in his brain, but really, how different is that from any other 20 year old?

Zach, just thought we'd share, if you read this. And my apologies for sneaking this picture while you were asleep in the hospital the other afternoon.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Way to go Steph!

I'm sure Stephanie is modest about the work she does, but it's nice to read about it. I know our family has new respect for the ski patrol ever since Josh broke his arm while skiing 2 years ago. He went over a jump going faster than he thought and collided with another skier. They thought his arm was dislocated at first, but then realized it was broken and took great care of him. It turned out he had broken part of the growth plate and the orthopedist said if they hadn't been so careful with Josh getting him down the mountain, it could have been worse. He healed up nicely with no long term damage and has been skiing ever since.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Letter to the Editor

Just a quick note to forward the Letter to the Editor that was sent by the father of a young skier that Stephanie and her team recently saved. Stephi was first responder and because of her quick actions this young man survived some horrific injuries, including ruptured femoral and renal arteries, a closed head injury, multiple spinal fractures etc. She received the Park City Mountain Resort's 'Patroller of the Year' award and other recognitions from the ski patrol as well. She loves her job, tough as it is sometimes.

Letters to the Editor
They turned potential disaster into a miracle
Article Launched: 03/15/2008 01:00:00 AM MDT
As a frequent skier at our three resorts, I often fail to notice the ski patrol doing their job. Only the sound of the Air Med helicopter makes me think, but only for a few seconds, about the work that these professionals are performing. On Tuesday, Feb. 26, my cell phone rang while I was approaching the top of the Motherload lift at PCMR. My oldest son explained that his 22-year-old brother had fallen down the Hour Glass at McConkey's and was seriously injured.
I rushed to the base of the McConkey's lift and was able to speak to a patroller who was helping coordinate Cameron's evacuation. His vital signs were very weak and he was in considerable pain. The patrol had arrived within minutes of a 911 cell call and they began to stabilize Cameron and get him on a backboard for the ride in the toboggan down the steep chute. Within a few more minutes I could hear the sound of the helicopter's rotors racing up the canyon and landing on a flat spot at the bottom of the Sampson trail. I skied toward the flare that the patrol had lit to guide the helicopter in and was met by the ski patrol and the medic on the heli who provided me with an update on Cameron's condition and was told I had only seconds to see him as he was swiftly transferred aboard and rushed to the U Medical Center ER.
Cameron was diagnosed with multiple internal injuries and had two surgeries within 14 hours. Miraculously he is back at home convalescing and he should have no permanent injuries.
I would like to recognize Patrollers Stephanie Folkman, Kevin Hammonds, Andy VanHouten, Zack Zane plus the Air Med Crew of Beth Fischer, John Cooper and Dan Yeoman along with the U of U ER team, Trauma team, Neuro team and anyone else who I may have missed. Your professionalism and dedication turned what could have been a disaster into a miracle for our family. Kenneth J. Block Park City

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Aunt Marjorie Folkman Newman

Pre-comment: When I say "Dad," I'm referring to Robert Vaughn Folkman, the father of Kevin, David and me.

Just a note to mark the passing of Aunt Marjorie in Jerome ID. She was Dad's younger sister, and the last member of Dad's family still living. Her husband, Tommy Newman, passed away only 56 days earlier after being married more than 60 years.

An interesting fact: I believe she was the last living grand-child of the Folkman pioneer family that settled in Plain City, Utah, in 1857-1858. So, a generation is now completely gone.

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Monday, January 28, 2008

Seattle Snow

We had a snow day today, and school was canceled. Most of you from Idaho and Utah will laugh, as you can see the grass through the snow, but we had fun. Here is Emma out sledding.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Highland Folkman Update

Just an note from the Southern Folkman's. Dave and I are going to return to Nauvoo for the summer. We will be serving as "parents" to the work crews assigned to the pageant. Approximately 20 young men 17-21 years old either just preparing for missions or just returning. 12-16 hour days setting up and tearing down the stage, lighting, sounds, props etc. plus missionary prep lessons, district meetings, temple baptisms and every other activity praiseworthy or of good report. Kris and her family will be returning as cast members for the first two weeks in July. We will have an apartment furnished for us by Pageant so we are hoping that some of our other children and their families will be able to make the long trip.

David is still working for Lowbook Sales and I am still working with my contractor while trying to establish a new business, roof deicing systems. I have partnered up with Matt and Tiger and the market is fresh and new and there is a great need for what we have. It is just getting the first two or three installations in an area that is difficult. Old problem, new solution ... takes some time to educate the buyer. We do have the new Aspen Grove lodge as an installation but have been battling weather and a construction foreman who doesn't seem to understand that our product goes on after the roof is on the building. He wanted us up there in November when there wasn't even a roof deck on most of the project. It is kind of like installing carpeting when the floor isn't installed. Anyway, we should start in earnest this following week.

Stephanie was recently featured in a chapter of a recently published book written by a guy who is a free-lance writer for Ski Magazine and other sports type perodicals. She is "Dynamite Girl". Her name is changed to Jackie, and she offers the disclaimer that the colorful language and some of the events in her "life story" were subject to literary license, but it is definitely Steph. This guy interviewed her last year and went with her as she did avalanche control, ended up putting her in his book about extreme sports.

We have a gaggle of scholars in the form of extra smart grandkids. Nick, Demi, Avery and Riley all carry 4.0 GPA's (got it from Grandma). Additionally we have three guitar players, one cello, one bass and two mandolin players between them. Nick plays cello and bass in the concert orchestra. Avery and Riley play guitar in their school's jazz band. Riley and Demi also each play the mandolin. David has taken up the mandolin in an effort to keep up the the grandkids. Me, I'm sticking to the bagpipes and hope to improve my skills this summer because some of the young men on the work crew are also the bagpipe players for the pageant and I hope they will let me practice with them. I learned a lot from the players last year and hope to pick up some more this summer.

Friday, January 4, 2008

Sophie's New 'Do

Sophie cut her hair for Locks of Love! Doesn't it look cute & sassy?