On my way home from my mission to England, in the Fall of 1972, I arranged to stop in Denver. Marti picked me up at the airport, and we visited Rick Hawthorne’s brother and bore testimony. Rick and Pat Hawthorne are a beautiful U.S. Air Force couple I had the opportunity to teach and baptize in Ipswich. I was 23 when left the mission field. I had introduced Marti to the church before my mission, when I was working for Pan American as a geophysical assistant during the day and in the evenings at The Red Barn – a hamburger joint across from Mammoth Gardens. Marti was baptized the same week I flew to England. When I returned, I was ready to get married, and did not really date anyone else. The next summer, 1973, I was rehired as a geophysical assistant – the company was now Amoco Petroleum. We had got engaged over Spring Break (see Song 057 Engagement Song), and as is typical in my life, I was looking way down the road. This meant I was thinking about our first child. A Lullaby was written for him, Howard Roice Nelson, III, who was born a year and a half later on November 25th, 1974. As our first child, this song became the music for the first Psalm. The photo to the left is Roice as a baby, and, when you click on the photo, the expanded view is Roice a few years later. The song talks about how soft a baby is, and describes his eyes, lips, cheeks, nose, smile, ears, hair, and charms. A favorite phrase of Roice’s Grandma Sharp (later Jackson and now Gries) from the song is “Your cheeks are pink like a rose, And fit so nice on either side of your nose.” And now Roice is married to Sarah Nemec Nelson, and is a software team leader at General Electric Aviation Services.
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