Look to the Stars
by Alice Isom Gubler Stratton
Chapter 71

735 HAPPY NEW YEAR! Ermal arose with the spirit of celebrating, resolved to watch the Cotton Bowl and the Rose Bowl parade on TV. And I resolved not to be sidetracked, no matter how many times he called, "Hey, hon, come look at this float," because every time I rush to his summons, he says, "Oh, you're too late."

The year begins on Saturday, so I determined to give the place a quick slickup, because Ruby and Roland are calling for us at ten. We have a date with them.

Well, my poor spouse! He has flipped the TV on and off with much lamenting and murmuring. "There's nothing but school bands, and all that yacking and chit chat between the announcers." Between the flipping the switch on and off he has paced the floor. He might as well have had a dust cloth in his hands while he paced around. Finally the Rose Parade really began and he settled down to his constant calling, "Hon, this is a pretty one, come see." Or, "Hon, you gotta see this one." I gratified him by sticking my head in once in a while. But I just barely got the place slicked up when the Webbs called for us.

We headed for Mesquite to have dinner at the Western Village. roland stopped at the hospital in St. George, and I ran to see Marilyn. She was 100% better. I was happy to see that she was her old smiley self.

At Beaver Dam we turned off the road and went up a little draw to where Harold Blackmore and his two wives Gwen and Florence were working on their underground house. The wives hugged all four of us, although I'd never seen them before. They made me feel like I was a dear old relative, and Harold gave us a big, hearty handshake.

The underground house is really on top of the ground, but built back against a hillside, with dirt scraped up on two sides and partly on top. Gwen and Florence were full of talk, witty and lively as crickets. Gwen gave us each a bag of fresh, raw peanuts. I think I never stopped chuckling while we were there.

Western Village was full of people who heaped too much food on their plates because they could get all they could eat for $3.49. We saw many folks from home.

On our way home we toured Bloomington and Santa Clara Heights. This, that was a barren desert so short a time ago, is newly landscaped and occupied with many elegant homes.

The first fast Sunday of the year. I made some New Year's resolutions. One of them was not to be such a weakling when it comes to fasting. I'll confess, that in all of my 72 years, I've secretly not hailed fast day with oy. I'd get gaunt just thinking about it. We're supposed to fast with a purpose, so today, I fasted and prayed that I'd enjoy fasting. And I really did.

We went to the hospital with Donworth. When we got there, Marilyn was visiting in Harriet's room. Harriet has pneumonia. Marilyn will be released tomorrow.

736 My new visiting teacher partner, Ora Morrill and I got the new year started out right. Our visiting teaching is done. Our families are Pearl Allen, Betty Owens, and Anna Mae Halterman. Ermal went to the hospital and brought Marilyn home while we were out.