The dream about my son

When I was pregnant with my son, I had a dream, and in that dream I was pregnant. I wanted to know the sex of the baby, so I looked down at my stomach and saw a window in it. I could see the baby through the window. He turned, and I could see his male sex organs!

Then sure enough, a few months later I had a boy.


Scary dream about my dad

When I was about six or seven years old, I had an frightening dream about my dad.

For a short time he lived in an apartment complex on the sand in Huntington Beach. He lived in two apartments there, one a studio and the other a two bedroom. My dream was of us in the two bedroom place. There was no furniture in it. A small man with a green robe on was wondering around the apartment. When I say small, I mean he was about my size at that age, maybe smaller, and he was definitely a man, not a boy. He was an old man in fact and was bald. He had a rope around his waist as a belt for the green robe. It was like a monk’s robe since it opened in the front, and some fabric was gathered around his neck. It might have been a hood, I am not certain.

My dad walked into one of the bedrooms, and the small man walked in after him. A few moments later, the man walked out and has a sinister smile on his face. I waited for my dad to walk out, and when he did not, I went into the room to see where he was. There was a pile of bones on the carpet next to the closet. Somehow I knew that the man had devoured my dad. I was so scared and sad that I woke up. I think I went into my mom’s room and slept on the sofa for the rest of the night.

It took me a long time to understand this dream. My dad struggled with drug and alcohol addictions for most of my life. I now believe that this was a prophetic dream, telling me that the addictions would consume him. As frightening as that is, I have hope, however, since the bones will rise again.

I still don’t understand what the color green symbolizes. I searched online and as far as I am aware, there aren’t any religious orders that wear green robes.

Just because I say nothing…

Just because I say nothing, does not mean I have nothing to say.

Just because I don’t say anything bad about a person or a group, does not mean I have no criticism of the person or the group.

Do not assume my silence equals assent. It may, but then again, it may not. Don’t assume that my compliment about someone means I approve of what they believe. As Archbishop Fulton Sheen said in A Plea for Intolerance:

Tolerance is an attitude of reasoned patience towards evil, and a forbearance that restrains us from showing anger or inflicting punishment. But what is more important than the definition is the field of its application. The important point here is this: Tolerance applies only to persons, but never to truth. Intolerance applies only to truth, but never to persons. Tolerance applies to the erring; intolerance to the error.

I try very hard to distinguish between the person (who was made in the image of God) and what they believe (which may be erroneous or not). They might believe something erroneous, but it is not necessarily my job to point that out to their face. If their erroneous belief causes them to act in a way that is harmful, then I can point out how the action is harmful, and how it may be evidence of an erroneous belief.

But in regards to the person, apart from their behavior, I might be wrong about their error, because there might be important facts of which I am unaware, or, I might be the one who is in error.

I tread carefully, slowly, patiently.

SolarBeat: musical solar system model

Check out this site. It is an interactive display of the solar system. It shows all of the planets and their speed relative to each other.

As each planet crosses the horizontal line, it plays a note. They all have different notes. You can adjust the speed to make the planets go slower or faster.

In the screenshot that I took, Mercury has gone around the sun 825 times, and Pluto has not gone around even once.

This site has been around for a long time; I discovered it years ago, maybe even before the divorce. I had kind of forgotten about it for a while, but remembered it just the other day. I couldn’t immediately remember the name, but googled around a bit until I did.

It shows the relative speeds, but not the relative distances or sizes. That is super fascinating, but it is another post.


My dream about the five little girls

I don’t remember precisely when I had this dream, and a few of the details are fuzzy. I think it was in about April 1990 but I am not 100% certain. It might have been earlier but it was not later. I was pregnant at the time, and so was Torri. I don’t think any of the other women were pregnant at the time of the dream.

In the dream, I dreamed that five of the women in the cult were pregnant, and they all had girls. Me and Torri were in the dream, but I am not certain which of the other women were in the dream.

I had Rebecca, Torri had Tamara, and three of the other women became pregnant, one of whom might have already been pregnant at the time of the dream. They all had girls.

There are several photos of these five girls, and they were all taken because of my dream. One of the cutest is when they are being held by their dads. It was taken in the Grange hall.


Caterpiller Road

One summer, I was driving home from someplace with the kids in the car. Or maybe I was driving to someplace, I am not sure. But one of the roads that we took was covered in caterpillers! They were everywhere. There were thousands of them. Many had been squashed by cars.

Being a homeschooling family, naturally I pulled over to a safe spot and let the kids out to see them. There was a field on one side of the road, and they were migrating from there. We ooo’d and aaah’d, and wondered why they were there, how long they would last, and how many there were.

We decided to collect a few, so we went home and got a couple boxes, then came back to get them. We took them home, and they turned into crysalises. Not sure how long they stayed crysalises, but eventually they became moths.

I don’t remember how long they were there in the field and on the road, but it was more than a day. Eventually, they were all gone. I wondered if we would ever see them there again, but to my knowledge it never repeated in that location or any location near us. The field that was there was eventually built up, with houses I believe.

Ever since that time, we called that street Caterpiller Road. I had never seen anything quite like what we saw there. The only thing that came close was when I was at the university in the mid 1980s, where I once witnessed the Monarch butterfly migration.

caterpillar road

The house

I loved the house in terms of the home that it was for our family. I have so many precious memories there of the children. The land it sits on is a great piece of property, as I mentioned before. And the work that Dad did on and in the house was top-notch in terms of quality and style. For example, he installed new windows, upgraded the baseboards, installed engineered hardwood flooring, did interior and exterior paint, did a major remodel that added two rooms and a sundeck, granite countertops in the kitchen, etc., etc., etc. The place needed a ton of work when we bought it. Now, there is not a single place that you can look where he didn’t do something do it to improve it.

It had been majorly remodeled at least twice (once long before we moved in). That is great is some respects, but I don’t like the feel of a house that has been majorly remodeled, and the floorplan never quite sat well with my tastes. Homes that have been majorly remodeled tend to have non-standard floor plans that are cut-up and don’t flow well because they weren’t thought through by a single designer before the build. Multiple designers over multiple builds at multiple time frames tend to produce floor plans that don’t feel unified, to me at least. The place feels like that to me. But, when people see the house for the first time, their impressions are positive because all the work Dad did. So I don’t mean to say that it is ugly. It is just unusual, different.

While there, I am sure I said a couple times, “I’d like us to find a home with a normal floor plan.” I also remember wanting to live in a neighborhood with sidewalks, so that we could feel safe when going for walks. But I see now that we rarely took the initiative on anything regarding our family. To take that sort of initiative would have opened us up to all sorts of criticisms and invasive inquiries, so in some ways it was just easier to stay put.

Even so, we had a lot of great memories there. There are volunteer berries that would sprout up in the summer and the kids loved to eat them. We had many vegetable gardens, and the kids would sit in the tomato plants and eat the tomatoes. We ate the veggies from the garden for dinner a lot. One summer, the weeds got so tall in the backyard that the kids made a maze out of them and I could not see the tops of their heads. We made lemonade with lemons from the lemon tree, and at least one summer the kids had a lemonade stand on the street. We had family meals around the dinner table most nights, with food that I cooked from scratch. We participated in homeschooling events such as science fairs and I still have the ribbons. We read lots of stories on the sofa, and watched lots of movies on the TV. The kids climbed trees and rode their bikes up and down the driveway. We took the trash out in either the little red Toyota truck, or Dad’s tractor. We recycled and had several of those recycle bins. When the girls got a little older, I bought them some kids cookbooks and they would make recipes that looked good to them. They always did a good job. I made and decorated many, many birthday cakes from scratch over the years. Off the top of my head I can think of the dinosaur cake, the whale cake, the number eight cake, and the heart cake. There were a lot of square, rectangular, or round cakes layer cakes too. I had a cake decorating book for inspiration.

I also took many, many photographs of the kids. There used to be a box of them there at Dad’s place. When you look at them, you may notice that I am missing from most of the pictures. That’s because I am the person behind the camera.

The forest made of weeds

One summer, there was a strange sort of seed that blew or somehow migrated into our backyard. The weeds that grew from those seeds grew into very tall weeds. The weeds were so tall and there were so many of them that the kids created a maze from them. I couldn’t see the kids or the tops of their heads when they played in that maze! I think Rebecca was about ten, so Rachel would have been nine and Joel five. They had so much fun playing out there. Dad finally mowed them all down with his little tractor, and I secretly hoped they would return the following summer. But they did not, and they never returned after that.

Where family members are buried

I don’t know if this is too much of a grim topic, but I thought it might be good to list the places where family members are buried.

My dad is buried in the Riverside National Cemetery. His plot number is 14-404.

A few family members on my mom’s side are buried in Fairhaven Memorial Park in Santa Ana. Larry, my grandmother Mary, my grandfather George (they were divorced), and my aunt Laurie. She was their middle child, between Grandma and Auntie Joanie. She died at the age of nine from heart issues. I never knew her.

My great-aunt Esther and great-uncle Paul are buried in one of the Catholic cemeteries in Los Angeles. Esther is Mary’s older sister. Ga (their mother, my great-grandmother) is buried in Corona del Mar. She died when I was 19. Her first husband is my great-grandfather from Ireland who died in the 1920s of TB. His name is Ferrell O’Biren (not sure of the spelling), and he is buried in a veteran’s cemetary somewhere. Grandma thought maybe in Riverside, but when I asked her if it was the same place as my dad, she said probably not since that cemetery is relatively new.

On my dad’s side, my grandmother and grandfather (Beatrice and Arthur, also divorced) are buried in OKC or thereabouts. Rebecca and I went to her funeral in the fall of 1994. I was pregnant with Joel. The pictures of Rebecca and Jessica (my cousin Teri Dawn’s daughter) were taken at that time. My dad has three sisters, two older and one younger than him. One of the older sisters, my aunt Helen, died in about 2002 of breast cancer. She was cremated and some her ashes were scattered in the mountains near Gunnison, Colorado, and the rest were buried in a cemetery there. Uncle Terry, Teri Dawn’s father and Aunt Jeannie’s husband, died in June of 2016. He is probably buried somewhere in OKC. I have a first cousin once removed, Pete Barber, who died suddenly in about 2010, I believe. He is one of Janice’s sons (Janice is one of my first cousins, my aunt Helen’s eldest daughter). He is buried in Gunnison next to my Aunt Helen.

As of right now, all of my first cousins are still alive on both sides of the family.

Wild Animal Park trips

I spent the evening with Rachel and Alex on Sunday. We chatted about different things, and it turns out that Alex has never been to the Wild Animal Park. Rachel and I were incredulous at that, since it’s not far away. I took the kids there many, many times when they were growing up. I asked Rachel how many times she thinks we’ve been there and she said 100. I laughed and said, “It can’t be that many!” We did go a lot of times, but I don’t think it was 100. That would be ten times per year for ten years. Maybe it was 8 times per year for nine years, which would be 72–still a lot. Plus the times the girls went with the Girl Scouts. So I dunno… lots of times though.

We had a membership so it was super cheap to go. Lots of times we went when I was too worn out from homeschooling. It became a field trip, and we had lots of them. We also went to the Zoo and Balboa Park from time to time, but the Wild Animal Park was much closer to home. The food there was super expensive and not that great, so I’d pack a lunch for us to save money.

So many fun and interesting animals to see there. Was the bird show our favorite? Not sure but it was super cool.

We saw tigers, rhinos, giraffes, cheetahs, zebras, flamingos, and many others. It’s called the Safari Park now. The name was changed in 2010, I think. We are going to try to plan a trip out there soon so that Alex can see it. It will bring back a lot of wonderful memories.