Friday, December 28, 2012

Marilyn Ashby

My sister, Marilyn Ashby, 67, Passed away peacefully on Wednesday, December 26, 2012 of natural causes. Marilyn was born November 15, 1945 in Spanish Fork, Utah to Gerald and Phylis Ashby. She lived in Spanish Fork throughout her life and attended Spanish Fork High School.

Funeral services will be held on Saturday, December 29, 2012 at 11:00 a.m. at the Spanish Fork 5th Ward Chapel, 1006 E 200 South, Spanish Fork, Utah Interment will be in the Spanish Fork City Cemetery. Family and friends may call at the Church on Saturday from 9:30-10:45 a.m. prior to the services.

Read her obituary at

Sunday, December 2, 2012

fréttir desember 2012

Christmas in Iceland
Christmas in Iceland is in many ways similar to Christmas in the United States. Families get together, enjoy good food and exchange presents. It is Iceland’s longest holiday; everything is closed from noon on Christmas Eve until December 27.
One major difference between Christmas in Iceland and in the U.S. is that Icelanders celebrate on Christmas Eve. The family gets together in the evening and that is when presents are exchanged. During the following two days everyone goes to Christmas parties and meets with grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins and friends.
Christmas Eve is the high point of the holiday season in Iceland, and the sumptuous dinner is just the beginning of the night. But what the children have been waiting for so long - the opening of packages - cannot take place until a few details have been attended to: the table has to be cleared and the dishes washed, but there are many willing hands for that.
In centuries past, most people would slaughter a lamb and have ‘kjötsúpa’ for Christmas dinner, a meat broth with bits of meat in it. Kjötsúpa is still common in Iceland, although not as Christmas dinner. Poorer families would have ptarmigan for Christmas.
Nowadays, the most common Christmas dishes in Iceland are ham (hamborgarahryggur), smoked lamb (hangikjöt) and ptarmigan (rjúpa). Ptarmigan is no longer a food for the poor and has become very popular with Icelanders, and the ptarmigan hunting season is one of the most anticipated events of the year for hunters. These dished are lavishly prepared with side dishes including potatoes, prepared in many different ways, peas and beans, gravy, jam etc. The cook usually spends most of the day cooking, with help, of course, from other family members.
Icelanders have not one, but thirteen Santas, or Yule Lads. These lads are not related to Santa Claus in any way. They are descendants of trolls and were originally used to scare children. In the last century, however, they have become a lot friendlier.

Gleðileg jól

Storytelling Then and Now
The Sagas of the Icelanders are exceptional tales of every life and historic events that were kept alive using the oral tradition for two to three hundred years before they were recorded in written format. The stories found in the Sagas are not typical heroic literature, but rather tales of flesh and blood people burdened with the heroic legacy of the Vikings. Storytellings in the Icelandic Sagas are tales of people deeply rooted in the real world of their day. These stories explore the human problems of love and hate, fate and freedom, crime and punishment, travel and exile. The Sagas of the Icelanders lets us know of the concerns and affairs of the people who lived between 930 and 1030.
I find it fascinating that Todd Hansen great-grandson of Eyjolfur Eiriksson and Jarthrudur Runolfsdottir, immigrants to Utah from Iceland in the 1880s, keeps the storytelling tradition going. Todd hosts BYUTV's "The Story Trek." This show sets out to prove how fascinating so-called ordinary people actually are. Through the random, door-to-door interviews Todd conducts, you meet quirky, serious, intelligent, fun people who make you laugh, smile, cry, and think.
Todd was the Master of Ceremony for the Icelandic Association of Utah’s Sesquicentennial Gala, June 24, 2005.

Emigrant of the Month Dec. 2012


Halldor was born 1 March 1856 at Skurdbaer, Medallandsthing, Vestur Skaftafell. His parents are Jon Jonson, born 24 February 1829 at Audnar, Medallandsthing, Vestur Skaftafell, died 26 April 1858 at sea; and Margret Jonsdottir, born 2 March 1829 at Sydri-Steinsmyri, Medllandsthing, Vestur Skaftafell, died 1 August 1911 at Hafnarfirdi, Gardar a Alptanesi, Gullbringu.
He married Gudrun Jonsdottir in January of 1879. Gudrun was born 4 June 1850 at Grof, Gufunes, Kjosar. In 1880 they joined The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and were baptized by Elder Jon Eyvindsson, 13 November 1880. Halldor and Gudrun, along with their son Johann, left Iceland in 1881 with a company of twenty-two, under the leadership of Elder Jon Eyvindsson and Elder Jacob Jonsson. The company left Reykjavik on the steamer Cameoens, and came by way of Granton, Scotland, Liverpool, England and then to New York, crossing the ocean on the steamship Nevada. They arrived in New York 23 July 1881 and left the same evening for Salt Lake City, arriving in Salt Lake City 7 August 1881. They left Salt Lake City the next day for Spanish Fork, Utah.
Halldor bought a farm in Spanish Fork, but within only a few years he moved to Cleveland, Utah in Emery County. Halldor and Gudrun had seven children: Johann, born in Iceland 2 October 1879, died 17 May 1954 in Washington State; Margret Catherine, born in Spanish Fork 12 August 1882, died 28 February 1957; Barney Andrew, bornin Spanish Fork 12 August 1882, died 4 November 1961. The other four children were born in Cleveland, Utah: Halldor Jacob, born 26 January 1883, died 4 September 1884; Domhildur Sarah, born 20 October 1886, died 31 May 1888; Groa, born 27 December 1890, died 16 September 1924; and Albert, born 18 November1893, died 27 March 1945. Halldor and Gudrun were later divorced.
Halldor returned to Iceland and served two missions, one from 1899 to 1901 and the other in 1910. When he returned from his second mission he brought home with him Jonina Fridsemd Asgrimsdottir, and her son, Engilbert Jonson, and Jonina’s mother, Gudny Hrobjartsdottir. Halldor and Jonina married and had two children. Jonina was born 25 February 1885 at Grimstadir, in Akraneskaupstadur, died 13 February 1967 in Price, Utah.
Halldor was also married to Margret Magnusdottir, 25 March 1885; they later divorced. Margret was born 20 November 1856 at Mosfellsveit, Kjosar, died 15 June 1924 in Cleveland, Utah. Halldor died 11 January 1936 in Cleveland, Utah and is buried in the Cleveland Cemetery.