Nearly four decades ago Dorothy Wilhelm was a widow with six children and as far as she knew, no employable skills. She could not even drive her car on the freeway. Today she still has six children, but everything else has changed.

She is a columnist, humorist, speaker and broadcaster, she  has spoken to audiences from Bangkok to Nashville. Dorothy hosted Beacon Award winning My Home Town on Comcast TV for another decade and she now does an Dorothy now does an internet radio broadcast on the SOB Radio network. (That stands for Spunky Old Broads. All the hosts are women over fifty.)

She does Tai Chi three times a week, including Sword Form – and she drives anywhere she wants.

At mygenerationgap.com

By Dorothy!

In these days when we can’t be  together, this is an activity that reminds us all that we are family even when we aren’t together.

This is a fun project that can be spread over several days. Other designs, greetings and messages can be done by the same method.


  • Tissue paper, different colors
  • Gloss Medium (for art projects)
  • Elmer’s Glue will work
  • Sturdy paint brushes
  • Paper for patterns,
  • Saran wrap – this is your work ground so tape down securely or everyone will whine.

Let the children tell the story – How many of us live together in this house?
Parents, Siblings, Pets? Draw patterns if you want. Everyone can make a tissue paper figure of themselves or some other member of the family who lives in our house. Cut out the figures and, using big brush and
medium or Elmer’s generously to glue them together and give them translucence.

Add family members who don’t live with us but are still dear – grandparents, friends. Don’t be fussy about the shapes. Bumpy is fine. Add animal friends, if you want.


Finally,– who is in our family who doesn’t live on earth anymore? We invented this activity for my daughter Gina who was six when her Daddy died. These dear people can be represented in different ways – either as people of angels or flowers, or kites. Anything at all that reminds they’re not lost to us..

These figures are added to the sun catcher with a final layer of Gloss Medium. When it’s dry, Peel it off the saran. Easiest way is to loosen the sun catcher as you add layers, leaving at least enough space to get a table knife between the sun catcher and the saran wrap. Loosen and lift until it’s free though if your creation is very stubborn, just cut down to figures and leave it. Hang it in the window to catch the sun and remind us of what a wonderful family we have.

This technique can be used to make all sorts of designs. The important thing is to periodically check to see that you have an open place between sun catcher and saran wrap so that you can lift it off without ruining your creative effort.

For more information:
Dorothy Wilhelm
check for more craft ideas at:


True Tales of Puget Sound is now in its fifth Printing and is officially one of this year’s best sellers for The History Press.


Dorothy spent ten years as Creativity Expert for KIRO radio and TV in Seattle, sometimes sharing the microphone with Dave Ross who has written the Foreword for this book.

Across the Fence: Dorothy Wilhelm tells Sound history

From The Suburban Times


If you feel that you have heard all of Puget Sound history and nothing could surprise you anymore – think again! For the other day, I finished reading legendary author and humorist Dorothy Wilhelm’s latest book, “True Tales of Puget Sound”. And I just wish history in school were taught as lively and interspersed with fun facts as this beautiful book manages to do.

Dorothy Wilhelm has a gift for turning history into an experience which brings the past right to your doorstep.

As many of you might know, Dorothy Wilhelm used to be the TV show host and producer of “My Home Town”, and as such she traveled the Puget Sound region, digging into what defines all kinds of smaller and bigger communities. At the fringe of these productions, local residents told Dorothy Wilhelm bits of history that are not mentioned in your everyday history book. History that they or their family experienced from the times of the first settlements up to the presence. Now, everybody who knows my friend Dorothy also knows that she is very inquisitive, constantly checking out things across the fence, and wants her facts straight. So, she started checking on what she had heard and backing up these tales by countless interviews with historians and reading numerous books (the bibliography is quite impressive). The result is an amazing book about what I call “lived” history (in contrast to names-and-numbers-noting history).

There are stories about the incredible generosity of the first settlers against newcomers, about the hardships of pioneer days that, here in Western Washington, don’t reach too far back, about the big picture as well as small items. Dorothy Wilhelm links up seemingly unconnected topics with astonishing ease. Or would you know e.g. how a cookbook is of importance to woman’s voting rights? And with that typical humorous glint in her eyes, she manages to remind us of how we would deal with situations of the past today – or rather quit, because – let’s face it – we have become pretty soft. Most of us would stop after the first few miles of the Oregon Trail and return home with blisters on our feet and complaints about the weather. Well, Dorothy Wilhelm has that gift to point out such things without sounding reprimanding.

“True Tales of Puget Sound” presents us with some marvelous stories of 20 Puget Sound communities. And a fantastic compilation of old photos and artwork illustrates the text and makes the book a true work of entertainment as well as of local history.

Dorothy Wilhelm’s “True Tales of Puget Sound” is available as a hardcover and as a softcover (210 pages each) anywhere books are sold. Or you might want to check out one of the author’s book signings to get yourself a signed copy. An ebook version is also available.

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