Each day of our lives can be a learning experience. We can record each experience in our minds and memories. We can continue to grow and learn through out our lives if we have an attitude of wanting to learn everything we can. This is such a broad subject that we cannot expect to do more than tell of a few observations as samples of learning. There are many ways to learn. There are interesting things all around us of which to gain experience and develop our capacity to learn. In this email we will not even touch on the vast field of learning through study in schools. We will just record a few things that I have learned by observation and by associating and talking to people.

We have recorded many of the things that I learned from my parents and those with whom I associated with in my life. I desire to record a few learning experiences that illustrate a little of what I mean by the title of ?Live and Learn?.

From the time I was very small I enjoyed watching men at work. I remember going down to watch Brother Able Hardy as he worked in his blacksmith shop. He was a big strong man that could handle big sledge hammers with one hand while holding hot iron with the tongs in the other hand. Seeing my interest, he would talk to me and tell me what he was doing. He explained that to weld two pieces of heavy iron together it was necessary to get both pieces very hot and quickly put one on top of the other and pound them together actually fusing the melted iron one into the other. He explained the process of tempering. Each tool needed a different temper according to its use. I saw him make chisels by shaping a piece of steel and sharpening one end. Then he would heat it very hot. Take it out and rub it in a box of sand then take it out and watch the color change on the sharpened end. When he saw the color come up that he wanted he would plunge the chisel into a barrel of cold water making it hiss and boil around the hot iron. When it had cooled sufficiently he would take it out and put it aside to cool completely.

The picks and grubbing hoes were tempered not quite so hard. But hard enough to stand the digging in the rocks and dirt. Crow bars had still another temper so as to be able to stand the work they were used for. I saw him put new points on worn plow shares. I watched him make horseshoes for the big Percheron draft horses. I even watched him make a set for pitching horse shoes that were just the right weight. This is one sport in which he excelled and enjoyed pitching horseshoes in competiton with the other men on celebration days.

I often went up to the harness, saddle, and shoe shop to watch Brother Alvin Coon as he worked the leather and taught the men how to do their work. I went out to visit Bro. Porfirio Flores out in the tannery. He explained the whole complicated process of tanning the different kinds of leather. He showed me all the work involved and the different kinds of tanning processes. I learned that the process for tanning hides with the hair on was much different from the process of making many different kinds of leather. Brother Coon used all different kinds and colors of leather. Soft durable leather for the tops of the shoes, and thick green cow hide leather for the soles and heels. He used different kinds of leather for chaps, another kind for saddles, and still another kind for saddle strings. Harnesses and collars were a lengthy complicated process that took much time and patience.

I remember when Bro. Edwin McClellan came and lived in our home while he made the beautiful kitchen cabinets for my Mother. I enjoyed watching him at his work. He set up his carpenters bench out in our back yard. He had some very fine tools and equipment. He meticulously cared for and sharpened his tools. I watched him many times while he joined the edges of two boards together. He would use a long plane to straighten and smooth each edge until they fit smoothly together. Then he would cover each edge with a thin layer of carpenters glue then tightly clamp them together to dry over night. Most of the joints were so well done that you could hardly tell where they were joined. He carefully made each piece so that when they were all put together they formed the beautiful kitchen cabinets. The cabinets had many different doors and compartments. In the center were two glass doors where Mother placed her beautiful china dishes. There was a big sideboard and work area with bins flower and sugar. Doors with shelves inside. Brother McClellan enjoyed his work. I could see him smile in satisfaction as he worked the beautiful pine wood.

When Bro. Millan Wall came to shingle our roof I climbed up to watch him in the dangerous work of shingling the roof with great precision.

When we were rebuilding the mill I watched and learned the art of making adobes. We hauled the dirt from out on the flat east of Dublan to where the crews of adobe makers were working in the big space from across the mill. I watched them as they made a big cup in the big piles of dirt and fill it with water so that it could soak through all the dry dirt prepare it to use as mud the next morning. The Next morning they would cover the mud with straw and with their big hoes they would mix the straw into the mud by chopping down and pulling it towards them. After mixing it thoroughly at the right consistency they would begin to make the adobes. The adobe mold was made of wood being two squares that were each twelve inches wide and eighteen inches long and four inches high with a handle on each side. One man would wet the adobe mold with a rag from a bucket of water. Then he would place the mold on the ground and hold it with his bare foot while another man would bring a wheel barrow of mud and dump it into the double mold. Then the man would press the mud into the mold with his bare foot and squat down and scrape off the extra mud and place it to one side for the next mold. Then he would smooth the mud even with the top of the mold and pull off the mold and wash it down again and place the mold on the ground ready for the next pair of adobes. One man mixing the mud the other on the wheel barrow while the one filled and worked with the mold. Three men working together could make as high as 350 adobes in a day. They worked by contract so they could work as long and as fast as they wanted to.

I can remember when they started to build the new Chapel down on the church lots across from the old tithing office. I remember that my father was appointed as head of the building committee. As a seven year old boy I was very interested in watching the men of the community as they prepared and made the brick for the new Chapel and School House. They hauled wagon load after wagon load of dirt from the river and strained the sand to get it ready to mix with the river dirt. They built a mixing vat by making a big square box with a door that swung open on one side. They put in a large pole that was fastened at the bottom and the top of the box with a wooden bearing. This pole inside of the box had many pieces of iron sticking out all around it that been driven in it to mix the mud. A long pole was fastened to the top of the pole. This pole extended out about 20 feet. A mule was hitched up to the end of the pole to pull it around and around while mixing the mud. The mixture to make the brick was shoveled into the box and water was added for the right consistency while mixing the mud. After mixing the mud for sometime , with the mule going around and around. The side door was opened and they put the mixture into the brick mold and patted the mixture into the mold and scraping off the extra mixture. The molds were removed leaving the new bricks to dry in the sun, and placing them to receive more mud for new bricks from the mixture.

When the bricks were dried from the sun they were placed in a kiln in such a way that the heat from the fire could reach every brick. When the kiln was finished it had three tunnels beneath the bricks about three feet high and four feet wide that extended the length of the kiln. Each Kiln was about 20 feet square and l0 feet high. They hauled many loads of white oak and juniper wood from the mountains. They built big fires in the tunnels under the kiln and kept them burning day and night until the bricks were a bright red. I remember going down and watching Brother Charles Taylor as he kept the fires burning in the three big kilns. These beautiful bricks were used to build our big new Chapel and School House. I also remember watching my father and the men of the ward mixing cement with shovels to pour the sloping ramp of cement that led down into the basement of the new building.

When we started to make trips into the Sierra Madre I met a wonderful old man named Don Panchito Peņa. He worked for Emilo Burgoes taking care of the old Burgoes ranch on the Gavilan deep in the Sierra Madre. Emilio invited us to go to the ranch any time we wanted to go. He had told his uncle Don Panchito to supply us with anything we needed and go with us on our tips into the beautiful canyons. Don Panchito had spent most of his life on the trails of the Sierra Madre. For many years he used a pack train of about 30 mules to haul supplies and machinery to the many different mines and communities through out the mountains.

We became very good friends and at night around the camp fire he would talk of his history and tell many stories of his life. Because of his vast experience I was eager to learn the many skills that he had developed. He made us some Aparejos with all of the equipment that went with them. I often went and worked with him and learned how to sew the leather for the Aparejos and do all of the things that you have to know how to do the make the Aparejos. This included weaving the broad horse hair cinches and making the horse hair hackamores for the pack mules. He taught me how to prepare the rawhide strings and braid the beautiful Rawhide Riatas. We learned to pack the mules in such a way that the loads was well balanced and well secured on the Aparejos. I have written in other letters and documents the description of the Aparejos and the making of the Riatas.

I learned many camping skills and how find and use many different herbs that grow in the Sierra Madre. I engraved in my mind the many trails that we traverled and the layout of the country and the beautiful canyons wherever we went. I will always be greatful for Don Panchito and the many guides and cowboys that went with us on our many trips through the mountains. We are thankful for the many experiences we had as a family that taught us to love the beauties of the beautiful places that we knew and loved.

We have mentioned here in this email only a few samples of the learning experiences in our lives. We say again that each day can bring a learning experience and bring us joy and satisfaction in learning to live and grow in our lives. We hope that this finds you all well and makes you realize that learning is an important part of living. If your mind is busy you can never be bored. Boredom is the sign that nothing is going on in the mind and memory. To live and learn is the purpose of our lives.