Thursday, May 30, 2024

Last of the Line

My youngest nephew is getting married. It is wonderful news. We also have another reason to rejoice. 

My father wanted his part of the family line to continue. Several of his children have children and so on. But none have the same last name. 

I had 4 brothers. Two of them never had children before they died. Another has a son. He has the last name. However my nephew has a daughter whose children will carry the same name as their father.

So this final nephew belongs to my youngest brother. Same last name. If he has sons they will carry the family name. My father would be happy. 

The really strange thing is that this nephew was born years after my father died. He looks so much like my father. Maybe a son would look like him. That would make it even better.

We just found out that my nephew and his wife are expecting a son!!!! Daddy would be ecstatic.

Saturday, May 25, 2024

March of Dimes

When I was very young in the 1950's polio was probably the most dreaded of childhood diseases. It caused children to be crippled for life. Some were put into iron lungs which looked like medieval torture devices. Those breathed for them so they would not die. Many died anyway.

Easterseals was an organization that was known to assist polio patients. People bought the seals that looked like stamps and used them to seal letters. They also reminded parents to watch their children for signs of polio if they displayed any.

Every year around Easter there would be a drive to collect funds for Easterseals. Each of us took a small donation. I always thought it happened all over the country and they raised a lot of money. Maybe they did.

Everyone was encouraged to give at least one dine. That became the idea of calling it the March of Dimes. It became synonymous with the search for the cure of polio. 

One year someone came up with a fun idea. Mom took a strip of Scotch tape as long as me. Then we covered it with dimes from one end to the other. It must have cost my parents a fortune. Thank goodness only three of us were in school then.

Now because of the March of Dimes polio has been almost eradicated in the United States. I like to think my dimes helped.

Monday, May 20, 2024


 The woman across the street died.

She was older and a bit frail but she seemed to be doing fine.

Then we saw a lot of cars gathering there. That was not unusual. Her loving family gathered around her for special occasions. She was loved by her family.

The cars kept gathering for days. I thought perhaps things were not good.

Then one afternoon I heard some commotion. I knew she had died. 

The cars were no longer there in large numbers. Every once in a while someone comes. I believe they are cleaning her stuff. One of her sons lives behind her house in his own place and he comes to assist.

I like to think she lived a good life. I know she was loved by her family. That is what is important.

Friday, May 17, 2024

Mmm Mmm Good

One of the things that gives me great joy is listening to my sons exchanging recipes.

As you know I have four children... three boys and a girl. I decided when they were very young that I did not want them to marry a mommy or a daddy. My boys learned to cook simple foods and my daughter learned to change a tire.

There were rules. No one was allowed to cook on their own until they could stand flat-footed on the floor and see over the top of the stove. No one was allowed to jack up a car without someone else close by for safety.

My daughter is the youngest of the four and has a tiny body. She was quite a bit older than any of the boys were when she was allowed to cook alone. However she now works for a car dealership. She has earned bonuses and won prizes for her work. Her father would be proud. But she has never been interested in cooking.

The boys are all nice big men. They did not make any difficult meals but they would not starve if left to their own devices. As they got older they all relied on others to cook their meals. Although my youngest son has become a good baker. He makes all their Christmas cookies.

Then I had a stroke. When I came home from the hospital it was unsafe for me to use the stove. My son began to cook for us. He now is not only a good cook but he has begun experimenting a bit. He makes the best chili ever. He made his chili for his brother and gave him the recipe so he could make it for himself because he liked it so much.

Now my second son made his brother's chili and was successful. He has decided to try a few new things of his own. Just last week he sent pictures of the turkey with vegetables he had made. It was gorgeous.

Every now and then the boys will be on the phone discussing food. They talk about the best ways to season meats and how to make their vegetables. They talk about the meals they have made.

I just sit and chuckle with pleasure. 

Monday, May 13, 2024

Hope Chest

Like many teenage girls of that time I had a hope chest. A hope chest was a storage of items intended to take into a marriage. The best ones were wooden trunks. Mine was a cardboard box.

To be honest I did not think about a husband. I knew I wanted children and I would need a husband to accomplish that. Old-fashioned thinking I know but I am glad I did it that way. And I did love my husband.

I worked at odd jobs and babysitting so I had a bit of money. I mostly had practical things like cake pans, a non-stick skillet, and other items for my kitchen-to-be.

My one extravagance was a beautiful hurricane lamp. It was white with flowers tracing up the sides of the chimney. How I loved it.

I would go through my hope chest every so often to admire my possessions. And I spent a lot of time admiring my lamp. I wonder what ever happened to that lamp.

Wednesday, May 8, 2024


 I have never been called graceful. I am a person who trips over her own feet. It is embarrassing. 

As I became older my sense of balance became a part of my clumsiness. Walking into the house I would get to the top step and become disoriented. I fell off the steps so many times. Thankfully I was never hurt.

My son got so tired of helping me up that he bought me a cane. That third leg gave me a sense of balance. It really helped me. I had been vain about using it before I got it which was so foolish.

Then a couple of years ago I had a stroke. It affected my left side. Since I am left-handed my recovery went a bit faster.

I still use a walker.  My walking gait is uneven. I can take a few steps on my own but I keep my walker or another steadying spot close. 

Unfortunately I still fall now and then. I try to be careful but sometimes it happens. At least so far I haven't been hurt. Still it is no fun.

For the most part getting myself back on my feet is the hardest part. I have to get to a place that can help me help myself. Then I have to find grips to keep myself steady.

The last time I fell I pulled the microwave (not in use at the time) on top of me. Thank goodness it was not the dishwasher because it was running.

So I am trying to be more careful. 

Saturday, May 4, 2024


Last post you will remember me ranting about gambling. I am against it. At the same time I do encourage competition. It teaches one how to lose gracefully and how to win gracefully. It teaches a person to try their best and be proud of their effort.

We played board games until we wore them out. We played a lot of games with paper and pencil. We also played card games. Lots of them.

Mom never 'let' us win. If we won we knew we had really won. 

We began with easy games like Go Fish and Lay Four Out. As we grew and understood more we graduated to more difficult games. All the time Mom was teaching us the right way to play and strategy to help us win.

There were also solitaire games. Mom taught us several games we could play alone. How wise she was using a deck of cards to keep us out of her hair.

Mom taught my children to play Dungeons and Dragons. In grade school all of my children could keep track of their points and weapons. They even knew how to draw and follow maps. They even made their own games for all of them to play.

These days I relax by playing solitaire on the computer. I have about 15 games that are favorites. I even play a couple of pencil and paper games alone. It all keeps my mind busy and I have fun.