Don's Archives

Writing has always been a way for me to dig deeper into my memory. I find it helps clarify my thinking and at this stage of my life I will use all the help I can get! Click on a title if you are interested.

Send comments to don@wierenga.com

Salvage

This was prompted by poetry written by daughter, Debra. It speaks of my penchant, inherited from my dad, of saving and "repurposing" stuff.

Spring Break 2005 . . . An Introduction

An attempt to explain Spring Break Fun from the kid, old kid (me), parent and community perspective.

Brother Bob

At a recent family gathering it occured that we are rapidly approaching the time when memories begin to fade. I'll record a few of mine.

Toe The Mark

This came from the last letter Grandpa DeKorne wrote from his deathbed to son, John. It got me thinking about just what it means to live a good life.

Keeper

No name could be more appropriate than the one given to this beautiful Alaskan Malamute. She was brought into this family as the keeper of my three grandsons, however before she was old enough to understand her role in life, she became my keeper . . . my dog and my protector.

Bureau du Roi

Grandpa DeKorne was a well know woodcarver. In 1914 he was commissioned to construct a replica of the famous desk created for King Louis XV.

Mother

She died when I was 10

My Europe Trip . . . 9/2005

The trip was motivated by my desire to maintain a close relationship with two European families. The Sprijbroek family, who live in the Netherlands and Ginny and I have known each other for many years. They have visited our home, we attended their wedding and enjoy watching their family grow. The Schoumaker family from Ebly, Belgium graciously opened their home to me for the second time. Raoul and Cassandra welcomed me to their home in Milan, Italy, planned a wonderful visit to Venice, treated me like a tourist but more importantly as a friend. A high light was enjoying a gourmet meal with their friends. Finally, I fulfilled a long time goal to visit the World War II memorial in Normandy, France and the Berlin Wall as well as a leisurely train trip through central Europe.

Recent Deaths

The death of my sister, Bernice Luebke and brother Bob (Baldwin) Wierenga occured while working as a Katrina Relief volunteer in Pass Christian, MS during the winter of 2006.

Six Man Football

Oakleigh School 1940's

Project Isaac 2007

I spent much of the 2006 winter working as a Katrina Relief volunteer. My home base was the First United Methodist Church of Pass Christian, MS. In my search for a spot to continue my service this year, I stumbled upon the Missionary Supply Network.

Keith & Diane Strong 2007

It was just a year ago that I happened to answer the phone at First United Methodist Church of Pass Christian, MS. I was a rookie volunteer temporiarily taking the place of Mike Zimmerman, the coordinator. The voice at the other end was calm yet desperate. "Our home was nearly destroyed by Katrina" she said. "A wall of water completely filled our two story home, up to just a few inches from the roof. We have been working five months to clean up the mess and salvage what we can. We live in a FEMA trailer and want to rebuild our home and our lives, but we just don't know where to begin."

Katrina Progress -2007

It was interesting to note changes that have taken place following the Katrina disaster of 2005. Most of the demolition has taken place and debris removed . . .

The Rose

Some people who know me may remember "The Rose' being one of my favorite songs. Daughter Cindy aka Sandy Feet, for my birthday, learned to play it on her ukulele. The last lines go like this:

Just remember in the winter far beneath the bitter snows
lies the seed
that with the sun's love
in the spring
becomes the rose

This rose, with Ginny's loving care, first blossomed about four weeks ago. It has been battered and bruised by 50 mph winds, torrential rains, sleet and now, snow. I asked why it hadn't been cut and brought in like the others. She responded that inside it would die within a couple of days, but left to nature we could enjoy it much longer. So true.

I say love it is a flower
and you it's only seed.


WE are the seeds of love and we don't need to wait till spring to grow . . . and we shouldn't be brought in too soon!

The Joy of Fitness
by Don Wierenga
March, 2005

In my youth and early adult life, sports and physical activities were the only things that mattered.They were far more important than school or learning, more important than family or relationships: it was where I experienced success and self satisfaction.
A String And A Rope
by Don Wierenga

The reunion photo was taken July 8, 1940, the summer before my mother died. I’m viewing it for the first time. I quickly scan the rolled picture, brittle and cracked, looking for familiar faces. I easily identify siblings, aunts, uncles and cousins. and finally locate myself. I’m seated on the ground in a grouping of 10-15 cousins.
From the Heart
by Don Wierenga
May23, 2002
Reflecting on his youth. Dick (Rhem) recounted his early years when each week he was required to memorize passages from the catechism.
Bob (Baldwin) Wierenga
by brother Don Wierenga (03/02/05)

Not too long ago through the persistence of sister Bim and the organization of Kris (Decker) Buth some of the Wierenga family met at the Christian Rest Home in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Jeanne is a resident there and brother Bob lives close by. So at Christmas time, 2004, we had a family reunion of sorts. Not much like those of the past when multiple families crowded into Bob and Jackie’s basement and watched Bob’s old family movies.

Dreams and Dogs

by Don Wierenga 6/8/2003

I have some reoccuring dreams that focus on certain topics but usually with a different twist. For example, golf. I miss a tee off time, or I forget my clubs, or I’m totally outclassed by my partners, or the course winds it’s way through city streets. Or running: I’m totally exhausted before I start, I win a marathon without breaking a sweat, or

Getting There

by Don Wierenga 2001

We have rockets and space craft traveling to outer space at the rate of about six miles per second. A jet airplane travels about 10 miles in a minute. It takes me about 3 hours to make the 150 mile trip to Glen Lake. Sixty five years ago it took about twelve hours.

Politics and Religion

Don Wierenga 2004

When people asked who I was going to vote for I said I really didn't know and I didn't, right up to the moment that I entered the voting booth and darkened the bubble for John Kerry.

I contended then and feel even more strongly now that it will not make a great difference in my lifetime. So why the vote for Kerry? My grand kids.