Jonas History: Jonas/Schumacher

As I mentioned earlier, I have the history written by Carvel Jonas on our Jonas Family History.  Here is another chapter from his book.

    “Our Jonas descendants from Utah can all trace their genealogy to the Rheinland in Germany to, so far, the early 1700’s.  This is the area where all of our great grandfathers and great grandmothers lived.  The Jonas last name can be traced to a little town called Kirchheim.  All the Jonas; we know of originated from Kirchheim, including Hubert Jonas who is the first, and as far as we know, the only member of the Jonas clan who sailed to America.  Hubert’s wife was born in Oberdrees, a little town near Kirchheim.  Her name was Maria Catharina Schumacher.  She went by the name of Mary.  Mary’s mother was also from Oberdrees, and her mother’s family as far back as we can go were also from Oberdrees.  Mary’s father was Johann Peter Schumacher.  The Schumacher’s came from Schweinheim, another town near Kirchheim.  Maria Catharina Schumacher was born 13 Sep 1815.  All of our ancestors from Joseph Jonas, born 10 Jan 1859, back to the early 1700’s belonged to the Roman Catholic Church, and were Prussian until they came to America.  Many of our records past the year 1800 come from parish records and give only christening dates instead of birthdays.  Mary is the only child we can find born to Johann Peter Schumacher, born 4 Jun 1793, and Anna Maria Schmitz born 1 Oct 1792.  Mary’s record of birth was not found under the Schumacher last name, but under her mother’s last name, Schmitz.  Mary’s parents were not married until she was 18 years old.  They were married 31 Jan 1834.  Fortunately they were married and left us a record, or our genealogical would end without knowing who Mary’s father’s family were.  Johann Petrus Schumacher’s parents were Hubert Schumacher, a farmer, and Elisabeth Nuecken.  They had three children.  Our great grandfather, John Peter, was the middle child.  Anna Maria Schmitz’s parents were Christian Schmitz and Anna Christina Siep.  They had two children, our great grandmother was the oldest. 
    “Joseph Jonas’ father was Hubert Jonas, born 8 Oct 1816 at Kirchheim, Rheinland, Germany.  Hubert’s parents were Wilhelm Jonas, Chr 23 Jul 1773 and died 27 May 1843, and Anna Catharina Breuer, Chr 21 Jun 1782 and died 5 Feb 1855.  Wilhelm and Anna were married 19 Jul 1802 in Kuchenheim.  They were parents of eleven children, 6 girls and 5 boys.  Our great grandfather, Hubert, was the fifth child and second son.  Wilhelm was a farmer and a weaver by trade.  Hubert was also a weaver, and mostly a farmer. 
    “Hubert Jonas was 43 years old when our great grandfather, Joseph was born.  Huber’s father, Wilhelm Jonas, was also 43 years old when Hubert was born.  Wilhelm’s father, another Hubert Jonas Chr 7 Nov 1728, was over 45 years old when Wilhelm was born.  So in our genealogy line about 131 years pass in time before a fourth generation was born, he being Joseph Jonas who was born 10 January 1859.  To continue the Jonas genealogy line Hubert Jonas, Chr 7 Nov 1728 and died Apr 1785 was married to a Gertrud Hartzheim.  They had five children, 2 boys and 3 girls.  Our great grandfather, Wilhelm, was their youngest child.  Huber’s father was Jacob Jonas.  We do not have Jacob’s birthday yet.  We do know that he married Catharina Zimmermann and they had seven children.  Jacob remarried and had two more sons.  A death date for Catharina Zimmermann has not been found, but we can assume it is between 14 Jun 1735, the birthdate of her last child, and 28 Nov 1741, the date Jacob remarried.  Records for a third man named Hubert Jonas were also found.  He was a few years younger than Jacob Jonas, and was also found on the same church records from Kirchheim.  It is the opinion of the author that these two were brothers.  Because of their similar last names, both living in the same small town, and Jacob was a witness to Huber’s first child’s baptism.  Also, the name Hubert was given to Jacob’s second child.  It is estimated that Jacob Jonas was born about 1699-1706.  The significance of finding these two brothers is that it assures us the Jonas last name continues back farther in time, even though known records may not.  Anna Catharina Breuer, Chr 19 Jul 1782, father’s name was Johannes Breuer.  He married Christina Neuenheim the 22 Jul 1777.  Both had been married before and had lost their first companions to death as both were widowed.  Johanne’s first wife, Margaretha Reuter, died Jan 1777 after almost twelves years of marriage.  Seven months later he married our great great grandmother, Christine Neuenheim.  Her first husband had died about nine years before she remarried.  They had two daughters, our great grandmother being the youngest.  Johannes Breuer had had three sons before his first wife died.  Johannes Breuer’s parents were Christian Breuer who died 7 Sep 1757, and Barbara Bessenich who died 16 Jul 1761.  Christian and Barbara had four children, two boys and two girls.  Johannes Breuer and his twin brother, Petrus, were the oldest children of the family. 
    “Now for the more specific history of Hubert Jonas, born 8 Oct 1816 at Kirchheim, Rheinland, Germany; his wife and children.  Hubert was the 6th child and second son of Wilhelm and Anna Jonas.  He was taught in the trade of a weaver as his father was, but records in America show that he mostly farmed.  He married Mary Catharina Schumacher 25 Jan 1844 at Rheinbach.  He was 27 years old when he married and she was 28 years old.  They had three children born to them in Germany.  They were all sons.  Peter Jonas born 13 Feb 1845; Johann Wilhelm born 24 Jun 1848; Johann born 17 Nov 1849.  They were all born in Rheinbach, and it is very likely that Hubert and Mary lived in Rheinbach after they were married.  All of these three sons died before marrying.  Our family didn’t have any knowledge of Johann Wilhelm, who must have died as a very young infant.  Since no record was found for his death in Germany he must have died sailing to America or shortly after arriving.  The only death record we have of these three son’s which has been found is for Johann Jonas.  He died 7 Aug 1870 at Frenchtown, Michigan.  He was a single, 20 year old who had worked as a farmer with his father.  He died of consumption, which is the archaic term for tuberculosis.  Peter, the oldest son is believed to have died from the same sickness.  According to cousin Verla both boys caught a disease from the horses they loved to work with.  The county records for Monroe county only go back to 1867, so it is believed that Peter died a few years before 1867.  Peter’s brother took his older brother’s name of Peter when he was confirmed at the local perish in 1866.  Peter’s name is recorded on the 1860 general census, but is missing on the 1870 general census.  So we can reasonable deduct that Peter died between 1860 and 1866.  This is consistent with what members of the family remembered.  Rosa told her daughter, Verla, that Peter and John were both in their early 20’s when they died. 
    “After arriving in America, Hubert and Mary had three more son’s born to them.  They were Wilhelm (William), who was most likely named after his grandfather.  William was born Sep 1851.  Francis, who was born to them about 1854.  Joseph who was born 10 Jan 1859.  The exact date of immigration is not know to date.  But we know they came between 17 Nov 1849 when Johann was born in Germany, and Sep 1851 when Wilhelm was born in America.  It is very likely they came during the summer month’s of either 1850 of 1851.  If they immigrated in 1850 Hubert would have been 33 years old and Mary would have been 34 years old, unless they left after Sep 1850.  If they left after Sep then we would need to add one more year to their ages.  Even though we don’t have the exact date of immigration we have it isolated to only two different years.  Also, Hubert and Mary never naturalized after coming to America according to the Michigan records.  Some speculation has been given by the author about the reason or reasons Hubert took his young children who were only about 6, 2, and 1 years of age across the Atlantic to America.  Hubert’s father had died before the immigration.  But his mother, and some of his brothers and sisters were still alive.  In researching it is noted that beginning in 1844 harvests were poor in Germany and business decreased  Many Germans were hungry and out of work.  There were also many revolts in almost all the German capitals in 1848 against the existing government and debate about the united Germany.  Perhaps these events influenced Hubert to leave and find new opportunities in America. 
    “Hubert and Mary first bought land on the 1 Mar 1858.  It was about 20 acres in Frenchtown, Monroe county, Michigan and cost them $300.00 dollars.  Frenchtown was in south east Michigan.  Hubert lived on land that is now called Woodland Beach.  They went to St. Michael’s parish, which is in Monroe City.  This was a parish organized specifically for the German immigrants.  The church has recorded on the death register Johannes Jonas in the year of 1870 which date matches the vital county records.  The county record has Hubert and Mary Jonas as parents.  The parish also has confirmation for Johannes Jonas the 26 May 1864.  He took the name Antonius.  They also have a confirmation of Johannes Jonas 16 Jun 1870 who took the name of Franciscus (Frances) which was one of the children of Hubert and Mary.  Also, the confirmation of Wilhelm Jonas 30 Sep 1866 who took the name of Peter-which was the name of the oldest child who died before 1867.  The second confirmation of Johannes Jonas was performed less than two months before his death. 
    “Hubert bought land for the second time 21 Jan 1865.  He bought about 40 acres for $800.00.  On 19 Nov 1867 he bought about 13 acres for $125.00.  28 Jul 1868 he bought one undivided 6th part of a certain piece of land for $200.00.  By 4 Mar 1871 Hubert and Mary sold all of their 46 acres in Frenchtown township for $1,000.00.  There may have been a transaction or two which we don’t know about because the acres don’t add up to 46.  These land records tell us a little about Hubert.  For example, the record of 1865 the clerk wrote Hubert Unos and that he was called Jonas.  The name was probabaly misspelled because Hubert would have said Jonas with the German pronunciation which give the letter J a Y sound as in the word you.  Also, when they sold all their land in Frenchtown they reserved the wheat now growing on said land, and privilege of harvesting and removing the same.  So we learn that Hubert grew wheat that year.  His son, Wilhelm, was growing wheat about 1900, so it is possible that wheat was the main crop Hubert grew during his farming career. 
    “On 4 Mar 1871, the same day Hubert sold his 46 acres for $1,000, he bought 72 acres for $1,000 in another town.  This time the family moved to Ash Township.  This new land was about 6 miles northwest of their land in Frenchtown.  On a 1876 atlas for Ash Township there is in sec 29, 70 acres for H. Jonas with the Little Swan Creek running thru the property at the north end.  On the other side of this creek is the village of Grafton, and it’s post office and store on the remaining 10 acres (which Hubert did not own).  The name of the owners around this area were mostly English and Irish.  The old Wayne and Monroe Railroad (now the Chesapeake and Ohio) formed the east border of the property.  The land to the south and west was farm land.  A Stoney creek was not on Hubert’s property, but ran westerly 1 mile or south of his land, and this same river was very close to his property in Frenchtown.
    “A land record recorded 4 Feb 1879 gives the date Hubert and Mary sold their 72 acres and moved from the state of Michigan.  Census records for 1860 and 1870 have been found for Hubert and Mary.  They show the family members names and indicate that Hubert and his son’s were all farmers.  The 1880 general census tell us that Hubert was living in Nebraska.  We learn that Hubert was 63 years and 10 months old when he first became a grandfather.  Hubert, his son Wilhelm, Wilhelm’s wife and their daughter, Anna, were living with another family whose surname was also Jonas.  Joseph, our great grandfather, was also found on the 1880 census, which was recorded Jun 23-24 of that year.  However Joseph was living in Columbus, Nebraska, working on the railroad.  It was first believed that this other Jonas family was a branch of our Jonas family.  But it proved incorrect.  It was coincidental that these two Jonas families met.  They belonged to the same religion, and were also Prussian.  The 1880 census also recorded the death of Hubert’s wife, Mary.  She died in Mar of 1880 of consumption.  This year coincides with the family history which was recorded in a history of Central Washington which states that Mary died in America in 1880.  The place that they lived at in Nebraska was called Pleasant Valley, which was in existence for only a year before our family arrived.  Today it is called St. Bernard, and was named after the parish that Hubert and Mary went to.  St. Bernard was a German settlement established in Jun 1878.  This is were our great grandmother, Mary, is buried, although the exact spot is not known.  The Platte County vital records have the marriage of Hubert’s oldest living son, Wilhelm.  When he was 26 years old he married Emma Schriber.  She was 22 years old.  They were married 20 May 1879.  It was only 11 months after Hubert sold his land in Michigan that his wife died in Nebraska.  Hubert stayed in Pleasant Valley from Feb or Mar of 1879 until a little after the 20 Jan 1883.  On this last date the following was reported in the local newspaper, “The Democrate”, under court proceedings.  Below will be found the disposition made in all the cases on the docket for the term just closed.  Hubert Jonas vs Peter Lonsbert passed.  This information lets us know that Hubert was still living in Pleasant Valley the first part of 1883.  Hubert stayed in this area for about 4 years.  Then the Jonas family moved west in 1883.  When the author was in Spokane, Washington doing some research he found a land record.  It was known that Huber’s son, Francis, lived in Spokane County, but no records were found of him.  Instead, a land record was found for Hubert Jonas.  bought 25 Sep 1883, 8 a.m. for $65.00, Hubert bought some land in the town of Sprague.  In the land record the words premises are used, and it is likely that Hubert bought a home and that Francis lived with him for a short time.  The selling of this property was not found.  Now the town of Sprague is in Lincoln County.  By 1885 Hubert and his two son’s William and Joseph were all found on the census in Ellensburg, Kittitas County, Washington.  Joseph and William had bought land together and all farmed for a while.  A census of 1887 shows Hubert still alive.  This same year all three of Huber’s son’s were living in Ellensburg.  Francis baptized a boy in the St. Andrew church in town who was born 5 Sep 1887.  At least for a little while Hubert had all three of his living children in one place living with him before his death.  There isn’t an official record of Hubert’s death do to poor record keeping at the local parish, and a fire which destroyed many of the civil records at the county building.  The Holy Cross Cemetery in Ellensburg is Hubert’s final resting place.  The church records only have record of where his body was buried, but not the exact date of death.  We believe it was in 1889.  Hubert’s granddaughter, Rosa, remembered that she was about 3 years old when he died.  So we estimated the year of death. 
    “An important article was discovered in the history of Central Washington from a book entitled “History of Klickitah, Yakima, and Kittitas counties.”  It is quoted here in it’s entirety.  Note that some of the information is incorrect and the correct information has been provided inside the brackets.  “William Jonas, one of Kittitas County’s successful farmers, lives two miles north and a mile and a quarter east of Ellensburg, Washington.  His father, Hubert Jonas, was born in Germany, in 1814 (8 Oct 1816), and came to the United States when thirty-six years old, and farmed in Michigan, Nebraska, and Washington.  His mother, Katherine Shoemaker (Maria Catharina Schumacher) Jonas, was born in Germany, in 1815 (13 Sep 1815), and died in America, in 1880 (Mar).  Their other sons are: Frank, who lives in Spokane County, and Joseph, a resident of Thorp, Washington.”
    “Mr. Jonas, of this articles, was educated in the schools of Michigan, and followed farming in that state until he was twenty-seven.  Then he operated a farm in Nebraska for five years and beginning in 1885, he was engaged in railroad work for one year.  In 1886 he came to Washington and took up one hundred and twenty acres as a homestead, and later bought one hundred and sixty acres, which he has since farmed.  He was married in Nebraska in March, (20 May), 1879, to Emma Schner (Schriber), who was born in Germany (Austria) in 1855.  She is now deceased.  The children which survive her are: Anna, born August 15, 1881 (1880); Hubert, born Nov 13 (4) 1883; Lizzie, born Apr 15 (3) 1885 (1886); Katie, born Jun 11 (6 Nov) 1892; George, born March 8 (3) 1898, all of whom are living at home.”
    “Mr. Jonas is a member of the Catholic church.  He takes an active interest in political affairs, affiliating with the Democratic Party.  His holdings consist of two hundred and eighty acres of land, which he farms admirably, forty-five head of cattle and five head of horses.  He devotes about twenty acres to clover, the rest of his cultivated land to grain.”  The above article was published in 1904.
    “On 22 Jul 1905 William sold some of his land to all his children for a dollar.  On 29 Jul 1905 he sold what was probably the rest of his land to a local company.  About three months later William died, 11 Oct 1905.  He is buried in the Holy Cross Cemetery, Ellensburg, in an unmarked grave near his wife who has a beautiful marker. 
    “It is not the intention of the author to give a life history of William and Emma’s nine children. Some information has been collected and will be given as a partial history.  Also, five of their children’s pictures are included in this history book.
    “After William died the children stayed on the family farm.  Many land records told how some land was sold and other parts of the land had an option to sell by a certain date.  By 19 Feb 1912 all the land was finally sold. 
    “Emma, who changed her name to Erma, William (Bill) Jr., Kate and Anna never had any children, although they had all been married at one time.  Elizabeth (Lizzie) had two girls, Clydeen and Francis.  Clydeen was killed in a car wreck and the family lost track of Francis.  Hubert had two children.  A boy who died in World War II, and a girl named Mabel.  Hubert and Elizabeth both had a daughter who made them grandparents.  Hubert’s and Elizabeth’s family lines continue today, but there are no Jonas last names passed on anymore from William and Emma’s side of the family. 
    “Emma or Erma died in her sleep on the Oregon Coast.  She and her husband retired there operating a motel and he did plumbing on the side.  Katherine (Katie) died in the fire.  The newspaper article is quoted here.  “Trapped by flames which swept swiftly through her small apartment at 311 Deermount, Mrs. Kate (Jonas) Helgeson and Gustav Remset, 63, fisherman, were burned to death early this morning as rescuers, beaten back by smoke and fire, attempted in vain to save them.”
    “Firemen, who said the cause of the fire has not been officially determined, reported the telephone alarm was turned in at 1:14 a.m..” 
    “Coast Guardsmen, William Kendred, machinist’s mate first class, driving by on their way to the bases when they noticed the fire.  Stopped they spoke to three women standing on the sidewalk and found no alarm had been turned in.  The Coast Guardmen broke in a window and discovered the man’s body, but efforts to pull him out were thwarted by flames and smoke.”
    “Mrs. Helgeson, wife of William Helgeson, fisherman now on the fishing grounds on the vessel Attu, occupied the upper apartment of the house.  Louis Jacobsen lives in the lower one.  Jacobsen told police he came home about 11 last night and everything was dark upstairs.”
    “The two-story frame house was shambles, firemen said, although the lower floor was still intact.  Damage is estimated at $3,500.00.  Coroner P. J. Gilmore ordered an autopsy performed this afternoon by Dr. Dwight Cramer to determine the cause of death of the woman and man.  Mr. Remset, a member of the Deep Sea Fishermen’s union, registered in Seattle, was a halibut fisherman.”
    “Mrs. Helgeson, at one time a resident of Petersburg, had lived here for many years, and at one time operated what is now the Up and Up cafe.”
    “Kates death record has the following information.  She was 5’6” tall 225 lbs, and had a ruddy complexion with dark hair.  Cousin Verla Lythgoe, who did the LDS Temple work for Katie, said that she couldn’t stop crying during the time she was in the temple.  She knew that Katie was overjoyed that her temple work was being done for her. 
    “A short note should be made for Frank or Francis Jonas, who was a brother to William and Joseph Jonas.  We do not have very much information about him..  Neither Joseph’s or William’s children know much about him or his possible children.  I was told that he was the “black sheep” of the family and moved away from his brothers and their families.  I discovered that he married a Louise Andrews and in 1887 baptized a son in Ellensburg.  He wrote to his brother, Joseph, before Joseph died in 1917, so he probably lived longer than any of his brothers.  Merlin Jonas Andersen met a son of Frank’s in Idaho in 1937, but he wouldn’t have anything to do with his Utah cousins.  One day we will be able to add Frank’s family to this history.
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Presidents Day

In honour of Presidents Day this year I thought I would post a couple of pictures I have regarding Presidents of the United States.

Brad Hales, me, Anna Badger, and Jeana Stuart

Brad Hales, me, Anna Badger, and Jeana Stuart

Bush and Cheney Inauguration in 2008

Bush and Cheney Inauguration in 2008 in front of the US Capitol

George Washington statute by the Turnbull Commission of Five.  Adams, Jefferson, Washington, all became Presidents.

George Washington statue by the Trumbull Declaration of Independence.  Adams, Jefferson, Washington, all became Presidents, in US Capitol, Washington, DC

Martha and George Washington tombs

Martha and George Washington tombs in Mt Vernon, Virginia
Washington Equestrian Statute with Jefferson standing in front

Washington Equestrian Statue with Jefferson standing in front in Richmond, Virginia

Washington as a Mason in Alexandria, Virginia

Washington as a Mason in Alexandria, Virginia

James Monroe tomb, Richmond, Virginia

James Monroe tomb, Richmond, Virginia

Plaque on James Monroe's tomb

Plaque on James Monroe’s tomb

John Tyler Grave

John Tyler Grave in Richmond, Virginia

John Quincy and Louisa Adams' tombs

John Quincy and Louisa Adams’ tombs in Quincy, Massachusetts

John and Abigail Adams' tombs

John and Abigail Adams’ tombs in Quincy, Massachusetts

Thomas Jefferson's tombstone near Charlottesville, Virginia

Thomas Jefferson’s tombstone near Charlottesville, Virginia

That is pretty much the closest I got to any of these Presidents, that I can prove.  I have also been the resting spots of William Howard Taft, Harry S Truman, John F Kennedy.

Visiting Charlottesville

This morning we took a lovely drive for an hour to our west.  Our destination was lovely Charlottesville, Virginia.  Of course, as everyone knows, named after Queen Charlotte, the wife of the least favorite King in America, George III.  It is tied with Monticello, Ashlawn-Highland, and the University of Virginia.  It is also linked with Montpelier.

Our first photos are in relation to Monticello.  This was Amanda’s first trip, my second trip.  This time had much more green for me to see which was a pleasant surprise.  I will tell you now, the gardens are much more beautiful when they have something growing in them!  We parked, purchased our tickets, and headed up the hill.  We chose to walk rather than ride the shuttle.  We arrived first at the Jefferson Cemetery which continues to bury Jefferson descendents.  The next stop was the massive gardens.  The tour manual boasts over 1000 feet of them.  The Garden Pavilion you see in the photos is about half way.  There are some great views from the garden area over the local area.  Really quite beautiful.
We roamed up the hill and around the house.  You can see various pictures from around the property.  The striped fluffy tulips are something to mention.  We even took a picture.  We got some pictures from the well known Nickel view.  We went on the tour at 12:40.  I have always been impressed with Thomas Jefferson.  Nearly everything in my knowledge of Jefferson has been of great influence on me.  His focus of design in homes has been something that has impressed me since I started drafting in about 1992.  I remember almost instantly learning about Jefferson’s views probably in my first month of drafting.  I have been enamored every since.  Anyhow, I won’t do an opinion piece on Jefferson here…  The house is magnificent.
We came out, roamed some more and made our way back down the hill.  We drive just another mile or two away to James and Elizabeth Monroe’s home, Highland.  You will notice in the pictures that there is a yellow house attached to the white house.  The white house is the original Highland.  In later years the Victorian yellow house was added and the plantation came to be known as Ashlawn.  Thomas Jefferson convinced James Monroe to buy a plantation near him which he did.  It is important to mention Monroe owned several.  In his over 50 years of office, he spent only about 4 years all together at Highland.  His wife was frail in later years and they never made it back very often.  Plus towards the end to settle all his debts he sold Highland.  He died in New York City debt free.  There is a massive tree there in the yard I wanted Amanda to go take a picture with.  So we got to see one of her better sides in that photo.
We left our visit at Ashlawn-Highland to head back to Charlottesville.  We stopped at the Thomas Jefferson Museum and then went to the University of Virginia.  After a day at Monticello and hearing so much about it I had to see the original campus.  You can see pictures of the Rotunda which is the focal point of the campus.  You can see pictures from both sides of the Rotunda.  We also took pictures both east and west from The Lawn.  The Old Cabell building is seen to the west from The Lawn.
Lastly, I added a couple of pictures from our trip to Washington in March.  There are some pictures from late one night of the Washington Temple, Washington Monument, and Jefferson Memorial.
It was a busy day.  We even took a cooler of goodies to make ourselves lunch.  Next time we need to pack more water though.

Few firsts

I tried my first sushi this past week. I enjoyed it too. But the cost will probably keep me from it for a good while longer.We toured a home built in the 1400’s. Yep, even before the settling of Jamestown. The home is tudor and beautiful. Wish I had one. It was imported, literally. The house was dismanted in Lancashire and brought over to America, piece by piece. They then built the current house. I quite enjoyed it.

We went and visited the Hollywood Cemetery. There we saw the graves of James Monroe and John Tyler. That was interesting. We also saw the grave of Jefferson Davis.

Amanda is now back at school meaning we are back on our tight budget. I don’t mind. I got a pay raise so it won’t be quite as cramped a budget as
it was before.

Tomorrow we make a trip to Kernersville, North Carolina. It will be Amanda’s first trip to North Carolina. I sure hope it is better than the last time I was there. It was so hot you walked outside and received an instant headache. We will be visiting and staying with my cousin and his wife, Terry and Marylynne Jonas. He is my Grandfather’s brother’s son. I don’t remember ever meeting him, although he remembers me when I was a
little boy. I don’t remember ever meeting his father, my great uncle Spencer, either. Anyhow, after an evening and Saturday morning together, we are headed to Raleigh/Apex to attend the temple there. Another one of the small temples. It is a bit strange to have to call and make an appointment to attend the temple. We are scheduled for the 1:30 PM session. It was the last space available, and it is Spanish speaking. So it will be a good thing for Amanda and me. We can brush up on, or learn, some Spanish.

We will return Saturday evening. Monday is a holiday so neither Amanda or I have anything to do. We may head off to do some more sightseeing somewhere.

Things are well. There has been quite a flu epidemic at work. However my good fortune of rarely getting sick has saved me once again. It passed on all sides of me. Suppose it was that lambs blood on my cubicle entrance….

Sordid thoughts on the lowly things

Here we are beginning another week.  I admit, I am torn in so many ways.  What to do?  Where to go?  These are questions that I suppose creep up in our lives when we are just not quite as sure of things as we would like.
My job has become just that.  I am not motivated by money and they keep trying to entice me with it.  Well, in the end, I find myself doing the same routine, with not much improvement.  Well, I lie.  Every week so far has been an improvement in my earnings.  This past week I made more than six hundred in a week, before taxes and all.  So I guess that is a good thing.  But that is not how I measure my effectiveness.  Never has been, never will be.  Why would I use Babylon’s measuring rod?  How many lives am I influencing?  Is my family the better for it?  Am I happy?  And then the answer comes in at a stark no.
I get to go around and meet a wide variety of people.  That is most definitely true.  However, while I do feel we have a valuable tool, and a good product for those who need supplemental insurance, I am finding many people who have this as their only insurance.  They are content to believe that this is going to cover their needs and that is not the truth.  I think most understand this is not major medical, but for the fact that these people are poor and paying for this bothers me.  Now for the craftsmen and heavy laborers who carry this, I most certainly think it is the best thing for them.  So I am touching these people’s lives, and getting to meet them.  But I am not convinced I am leaving them better off in the end.
It most certainly is a worthwhile time to visit and see all these places.  I have always been fascinated by geography and love to travel.  This job has catered to that desire.  I have been to the birthplace of Meriwether Lewis, William Clark, Thomas Jefferson, and James Monroe.  I have been to the place where John Wilkes Booth was hiding, found, shot, and killed.  The historic Northern Neck of Virginia, while slightly penetrated, has been interesting.  But all this traveling takes time and money.  By which I travel and find the homes of these people, which are literally everywhere, so the byproduct is I learn the territory.  However, I am finding that running a household, a wife in school, and other costs take one’s funds.  In the end, I can afford the $100-$130 I am spending on fuel.  But I am worried that by breaking even, I am not saving to replace or add to the vehicle that is being required to drive the minimum of 1,000 miles a week.  With 183,000 miles plus on the car, I should be saving or paying for another vehicle rather than running into the ground the only means of income and transportation, for two, I currently have.  That just seems dumb to me.  In the end, it is not making enough money to pay for a car payment a month, nor to save up for a new car at a later point.
What about the next point?  What about my family?  Well, the last week, I certainly made the most of what I have made yet with the company.  But having said that, I am leaving at 9 in the morning, and returning at 9 or 10 at night.  If I was single, that would not be so much the issue.  I have a wife that is at home.  She can surely spend the time studying or whatever else without my interference.  When I finally get home though, I am exhausted.  I need to eat and go to bed.  She is kind enough to provide the food.  By the time we read our scriptures, pray, get ready for bed, and make it in, I am beyond my bedtime.  We have spent little or no social time, and other events are just a pain.  That is fine for a little while, but it really starts to add up in the long run, and I am not willing to make that type of a sacrifice.  The job is on the altar before the wife.
Lastly, am I happy.  Well, I surely enjoy the traveling and people.  It does grow wearisome at times though.  I love meeting people, I love seeing these new places.  However, the chances of my meeting these people again are slim.  It was not like spraying lawns at all!  Many of them gripe and moan they have to pay this again, and the rest are just a pain to track down.  It wears on me.  What wears the most is that I don’t have time to do things I wish to do.  I take the LSAT this weekend and I have no time to really practice for it.  That bothers me.  What is worse that when I do get time to myself, I use it for other things than studying.  I have other things I place more importance on and since I never get to do them, then the lesser things don’t come up.  So now what?  I am not going to postpone it again.  I should have just taken it in June.
So, after seeing this whole thing now play out, I am not impressed with the fruits.  I planted the seeds, I have lingered, waited, and prayed long enough.  The fruits appear to be bitter and if I allow the tree to continue to grow, it will only grow more wearisome and bitter.
I don’t even think it is so much Combined that I am having the issues with.  I wonder how much more effective I could be if I were to be trained in how to sell.  Would that little extra bit every day make it more worth it?  Would I be able to stop earlier from working knowing I had met the monetary needs?  Who knows.  Probably.  If I could spend less time working to make the same amount, that would be good.  If I could lay some aside for other purposes, that would be helpful.  All I know, something has to change, now.
Having said all that, I wonder about the other side.  Could there be something more I am missing?
What about those who say stick with it?  Grin and bear it?  It will all work out in the end.  I have thought quite a bit about Joseph of old.  He was in prison and a very unlikeable position.  But he bore through it with faith and came out on top.  My leaders at work keep wanting to put me into executive training.  In fact, if I would have agreed, I would be in Virginia Beach all week for it.  (But what of the LSAT then?  Being gone all week seems to only compound the problems.  Best part, they don’t even pay for your being gone so I would sacrifice a week for no pay!)  So, do I endure, make my way to management, and then what?  Well, I will be expected to train.  How in the world can I train on something I have yet to learn to do?  Nobody seems to be willing to train me and I obviously have not worked it out yet.  As Marc says, I am making what money I am by pure hard diligence and work.  That is noble and all, but he makes the same I do with only half the hours.  Yet getting him to train me is like pulling teeth.  Endure….where is the line where you simply throw your hands in the air and say I am moving on?
Much on the mind lately is the thought that perhaps I am meant to be here for some reason or another.  Marc has accepted an invitation to attend General Priesthood with me on Saturday Night.  That is great news.  I would like to endure enough to see him read the Book of Mormon and join the church.  However, should I gain one soul for the kingdom and give up everything for that one?  Honestly, I don’t see anything breaking down in my relationship with Amanda, but do I want to take that chance?  It is hard to be a nice person when I am not completely satisfied with my job.  Amanda takes some of the brunt of that.  There are two reasons why I have stuck with the job so far.  Simply because I need some income to provide for those things that are essentials (granted this house is more than we need, but it is still inexpensive compared to renting an apartment).  Secondly, in the hope that Marc will feel of the Spirit and be converted.  With my being away from the company the chances of his keeping his commitments and being converted are greatly reduced.  He has no one else to challenge and teach.  I told the missionaries about him coming on Saturday.  I sure hope we can get his address and a commitment to take the missionary discussions.  That will sure take a load off of me!
Yes, I believe it is time for a change.  But where to?  What shall I do?  Where shall I go?