Owning It

Loni Chambers Capshew

Growing up on her family’s red dirt farm in southwestern Oklahoma, Loni Chambers Capshew never felt the least sense of deprivation as far as creative and material opportunities were concerned.  True, her hometown was not much more than a wide spot in the road, and all their social events revolved around either school or the little fundamentalist church her family attended three times a week.
More than anything else though, the richness of growing up in that lush little valley where the creek cut through the middle of the property right east of the simple four-room house established a lasting a lasting foundation for Loni’s creative upbringing.
Loni loved reading, writing, drawing, reading, singing, playing piano, reading, sewing, academic competition, and reading. Her Mom used to say it was never hard to find Loni– she just listened for the sound of turning pages because her middle daughter was probably somewhere reading.  That love has held fast till now, though, with her  Kindle Fire, Loni giggles that it’s not so easy to hear her turn the pages.  Perhaps it is that love of reading and artistic pursuits that led her to major in English and French, with a side emphasis in social studies, when she completed her university degrees. That love of reading and Loni’s social nature are probably the inevitable roots of her choice of career from 1971 till 2004, high school English teacher .Loni (Cappy, as she is still known to her students)  loved her job. In fact, if she hadn’t had to grade so many papers she( loved reading them, just not grading them),she confesses she might still be at it today. Reitirement isn’t half bad though. Back living in Oklahoma, the Tulsa area this time, she loves having more time to spend with her husband of 43 years, her three grown children, and especially her amazingly precocious five grandchildren.
Loni speaks of once having read a bit of wisdom which she still holds to be true. “If you can find an occupation you love, you’ll never have to work a day in your life.”  Asked to comment about how this adage has applied to her own life, she observes, “I loved teaching, and I love writing.  I’m still astounded that people pay me for either.  I say this not because I think I haven’t done pretty well at teaching, motherhood, or writing because I’m a give-it-all-you’ve-got kind of gal. It’s true though; when you love a task, it hardly seems like real work! That’s all  I could wish for anyone else. It’s serendipity.”
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