Saturday, September 29, 2007

The Life and Times of a Grandfather

This past weekend, I took a two hour drive to pick my mother up from her sister's house. This sister, my aunt, had in her possession documents from my grandfather's military duty. I have very few memories of this grandfather as there were some relationship issues that kept him and my mother apart and thus us kids didn't really get to know him. It is so sad how Satan can step in and destroy families, but that is another subject for another time. I have a strong interest in family history and why people make the choices that they make and so my current project is to get to know as much about this man as I can. Unfortunately, he died several years ago and so I cannot talk with him in person and so I have to dig through old papers and talk with those who did know him. His name was Everett Bowen and he was born in Audrain County, Missouri in 1911. I know that he graduated from highschool and married my grandmother Zelli Romans Trower in August of 1941. He worked as a sheet metal worker for North American Aviation Company for 6 months in 1942 and served his country in the 3119th Signal Service Battalian of the army between 1943 and 1946, when he was honorably discharged. Soon after he was discharged from the Army, He moved his family to Washington State. The family consisted of my grandfather, grandmother and my mother, who was born in 1943, while he was away during the war. Another daughter came along some time during 1946 and then another daughter in 1948. The family remained in the Seattle area and all three daughters were married in the Seattle area. When I was about 4 or 5, my grandparents divorced and due to the difficulties between my mother and grandfather, we rarely saw him. He retired to the Puyallup area and also died there in 1988. As you can see, all I currently have is a bare skeleton of his life events. I hope to flesh it out in the weeks to come and be able to have a more complete idea of his life and times. I enjoy the pursuit of family history, it is like trying to solve real life mysteries.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Update on Autoshop - homeschool style

I have posted here before about how my husband is doing autoshop with our teen boys by restoring a 1965 Mustang and I thought it was time for an update. It is a long term project that is taking many hours of labor but will prove worth it in the end. Occasionally, I am able to help some too. A year ago in October my husband purchased a 1965 mustang that was not running. The body was in pretty good condition and it came with two engines and a transmission. The project started with a gutting of the interior and removal of both engines, one from the engine compartment and one from the trunk. One of the engines has blown cylindar walls and is therefore not able to be used. They will use the engine from the engine compartment to which they need to add a new carborator and headers. After gutting the interior, they started to strip off multiple layers of paint. There are a couple of areas that need metal cut out, due to rust, and then new pieces welded in, nothing too major. Stripping the paint has been tedious, but is close to being finished. When they strip an area of paint, they apply rust convertor. They have spray painted the interior and sealed the seams. My husband has picked a paint color and we have a friend that paints cars for a living, who will help them paint it when they are ready for that. There is still a long way to go, but now things get exciting as they get to start putting things back together.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Our Summer's End Last Hurrah!

Over the weekend, our family was able to get away to Ocean Shores on the Washington coast. The weather was wonderful, sunny and in the 70s and we had the most relaxing time. There were walks on the beach, sand castle building, strange creature finding and go cart riding. It was especially wonderful because all of our family members were able to go. In this season of our lives, with older children working outside of the home, it can be very difficult to coordinate schedules.

This is a picture of the creature that our daughter found when digging the moat around her sand castle. We didn't know what it was, but have since discovered that it is a Pacific Mole Crab, and that it is considerably larger than the average Mole Crab.

Our trip gave us just the boost we needed to start on our busy fall season.