Thursday, July 31, 2008

By-Pass Heart Surgery

Hey You all,
A friend of mine named Dot has asked me to tell her about what I went through with my by-pass surgery almost four years ago, so here goes. She is going to be having the same surgery in a couple of weeks. Please pray for her to have easy surgery and a rapid recovery.

My surgery was performed the day after Labor Day in 2004. The doctor did 3 bypasses and put in a temporary pacemaker. Three days later I went back to surgery and they put in a permanent pacemaker. They did not allow me to feel any pain during that time, and gave me some kind of pain pills. Also some time in the day or the day following my surgery, according to my daughter, Teresa, who was by my side at the time, said that I just stuck out my arm and said, "Morphine, I want Morphine". ha. (I am not any kind of drug addict, by the way) One cannot be held responsible for what one says when he or she is "out of it". (BTW, I had my surgery the day after President Clinton had his surgery - only different hospitals, ha ha. He had just been on the South Beach Diet, too, as I had)

Within a few days following the surgery they had me on my feet and walking around some. Now the circumstances following my surgery were somewhat unusual. Four days following it, Hurricane Ivan hit the Florida Coast and I was there in the hospital at Pensacola. They had boarded up the windows on our side of the hospital in preparation for the hurricane, the hurricane hit on Wednesday night, I was talking to Allie back here in Tennessee and telling her how exciting it was. I got up to walk down to the end of the hall to see if I could see it blowing, but it was too dark outside. Then the lights went out all over the hospital just after I had gotten back to my room. That meant no air conditioning either.

OOPS I am getting off track with how I felt physically. I wss actually feeling pretty good, except for being sore in my chest where it had been cracked open, and I was having to sleep on my back (almost impossible) but they gave me Ambien to sleep and I did sleep but didn't like the fuzzy feeling when I did wake up. It was 3 more days before I could leave the hospital, because they were not letting residents back into that part of Florida because of all the destruction and fallen trees.

When I got home, back to Teresa and Tom's house, there was no electricity and I had to take cold showers (no hot water) but that is beside the point as well. We used a generator for a week, gasoline was almost impossible to find (another story as well).

As for how I did recovering, I was told by the doctors and by the video they had me watch that I was to walk some each day. So the next day after I got home, I started out to walk to the end of the block, and didn't tell anyone. I was wearing my red housecoat, and by the end of the block I had to rest on the mailbox and my legs were like rubber. Teresa came after me in the car. She said she missed me being in the house and said, "where is Mom?" then she looked out down the street and saw this little figure in red and knew it was me.
After that she walked with me some each day till I started getting my strength back.

Sleeping at night was very difficult. I had slept on my back in the hospital and had gotten a bed sore on my bum where I sit. It took about 3 months of treatment with ointment to cure it up. At home, I tried sleeping in bed on my side, (bad choice) and it was too painful and I found out that I wasn't supposed to sleep on my side when I watched the video again. So, to help me sleep, Teresa suggested I sleep in one of the recliners. That helped, but I also had a persistant cough which came from one of the medications for blood pressure, so that when I would almost get to sleep, I would begin coughing. It was a difficult time, I finally got the doctor to take it seriously and he changed my medication.

I was able to drive again after 4 weeks following surgery but for eight weeks was not permitted to raise my left arm over my head because the wires from the pacemaker had to have time to grow into the tissues surrounding the heart.

I slept in the recliner for 12 weeks and then was able to begin sleeping in my bed. Oh, how wonderful that was, to be able to sleep on my side once again! I could go into more depth with my recovery, but I don't want to bore anyone (in case I haven't already). It was a difficult time, but I know it saved my life. And it was "doable". I know that twenty-five years ago when Hugh had his first bypass surgery, chances of recovery were much slimmer than these days. The surgery has been perfected because so many of them have been performed over the years. I thank God for His loving kindness in sparing my life, and allowing me more time with my family and friends and all those I love.

Dot,dear, I hope this is helpful to you.

This is Blabbin' Grammy signing off for today. God bless you all. More tomorrow.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

More Driveway and Hummingbirds




Hey you all,


Just wanted you to see the really great extra parking place that has been created for me to back up from my carport so that I don't have to back into the road that goes by our home. Our friends and landlords, Mark and Allie, have seen to the creation of the extra space as well as providing gravel for our driveway. They really are taking great care of "Mama Ruby" and "Daddy Dub".

The picture is of Mark (Right) and his helper, Carl. Of course, they stopped work for a minute for me to snap the picture.

I also snapped a picture of a hummingbird at the feeder. It is hovering in front of the feeder on the left. Click your mouse on the picture and it will enlarge so that you can see the hummer.
Mark enjoys sitting and having a cup of coffee mid morning and watching the hummingbirds with us.

Dub and I went into Jefferson City this afternoon and exchanged a utility cart that has to be assembled. I bought it at Walmart on Monday and intended to put it together Monday evening, and opened it only to discover that one of the shelves (pressed wood of course) was broken on the corner. Top quality stuff, you know. ha ha. Anyway, naturally, I couldn't put it together until now. I guess I may put it together late this evening. Or I may do it in the morning while I am up by myself, waiting for Dub to get up. He wasn't up today until around noon time.
I also bought some (human) joint repair called glucosamine and chondroitin. Does it work? I certainly hope so. If anyone out there who reads this can give me any information on how it has helped them, please let me know. I also bought some white knee high hose for helping those who have had heart surgery. Won't they look great with my walking shorts?
Spent some time relaxing playing computer games. I admit it. I am a computer game junkie.
Severely addicted.
Dub and I had a great deal of enjoyment sitting on our front porch today after we got back from Jefferson City. He helped me water my flowers also.
Well, that is about it for today. Just kind of chatting with you today. God bless each of you and I hope you have a great night and a good day tomorrow. This is Blabbin' Grammy signing off.


Tuesday, July 29, 2008

A Free Day of Fraternizing


Hidy, Do,
Well, this morning we got up and got ready to go into Knoxville. We got to my brother, Hugh's, house and switched cars (my car is a little Yaris and difficult for Hugh to get into) with Hugh and drove his Camry as I usually do when we go somewhere together.

We picked up my sister-in-law, Mae, and proceeded to the Cracker Barrel nearest our house and had a really great breakfast. Then the five of us headed out our way to my home, where we chose to sit on the front porch and watch the hummers for a while.
We sat and talked on for some time, then I took my sister-in-law, Mae, through the house, since she hadn't seen it since I had moved in. She was very complimentary, (of course) as we walked through. It is always fun to share one's home with family and friends.

A few minutes later, Mae, Imazo and I got into the car and we went to Hobby Lobby in Morristown to see what goodies we could find. We all found some good stuff; I found some material for a new quilt, and some garland for decorating my picture window at Christmas. Too early, you say? Not so! It is never too early to think of what to do to decorate for Christmas.

We came back and had sandwiches, rootbeer and fresh apples. Yum. I had some fresh tomatoes from our little tomato patch out back that we used on our meat and cheese sandwiches.

I took Mae and Imazo back to my little workroom where I keep my computer and showed them some of the blogs, especially those of Dan and Whit and their adoption journey. They really loved it.

I am posting a picture of the four of them at the lunch table in our kitchen. Hope you like it. There is nothing like family get togethers, is there?

After a while , we decided it was time for the journey back to Knoxville, so the three of them got into Hugh's car, and I drove them back to Knoxville where we stopped at a grocery store for a few items they needed, and then after leaving Mae at her home, I left Hugh's car at his home, and got into mine, and drove home. Now, after popping Dub a bowl of pop corn, I am back here at my trusty computer.

Wishing each of you well, and hoping to tell good things on the morrow. Blabbin' Grammy signing off for today and wishing each of you a blessed rest this evening.

See you tomorrow.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Just Hanging Out Today

Hidy Do, Folks
Well, this morning I went out to water my roses and wildflower bed, and noticed how muggy it was, but also looked up at the sky and felt so blessed to be able to pull the water hose down through the carport. Some mornings (and evenings) when I do the watering, it is quite difficult to manage having the energy to do so. After I watered the flowers in front of the house, I went back to the back of the house and watered the little tomato patch and our fledgling sunflowers that Dub planted several weeks ago. Then I undid the hose from the water faucet, and rolled up the water hose onto the reel.

Sitting for a while on the front porch ,I watched the hummingbirds flit and feed at the feeders. It is so peaceful early in the morning out there, listening to the wind chimes on the porch and watching birds zoom and fly about. I also saw a rabbit running through the yard, seeking a haven in which to hide.

Going back into the house, I went into the kitchen and got out my morning cereal and milk, picked up my ever present book to read, and enjoyed a quiet breakfast. Deciding then to go into Jefferson City while Dub was still asleep, I got ready and left him a note telling him where I was, then I was on my way. Stopped at the local library, picked out a few books, and then on to Wal-mart.

I decided to buy a utility cart to use in my kitchen, so I bought it and returned home in time to see Dub wander into the kitchen in search of breakfast. I made his coffee and we sat and talked while he had breakfast and I ate a tomato, cheese and roast beef sandwich for lunch. (It was 1:30 by this time).

He was settled into the living room to watch television and I called Marian to see how she was doing after the big party yesterday. I also asked did she have any tomatoes, since we have quite a few. I told her I would bring some to her, and she said come on over. So I went over and her company from Canada was still there, along with another relative from Morristown. We had a great time talking and I learned more about her family from a long time ago.

When I got back home, Dub was ready to go for supper, so we went to a local restaurant and had supper. We came back and sat for awhile on the porch, eating a sugar free ice cream bar and watching the hummers. So peaceful it was. Now, we are both back indoors and he is settled watching a football game (one of his favorite pasttimes).

That is about it for now. Hoping each of you have a great evening and good night. This is Blabbin' Grammy signing off for now.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Celebrations of Life


Hidy do, Folks (Hidy do is the old fashioned southern greeting that is translated from How do you do?)

I want to talk a little bit today about celebrations of life. Aren't they wonderful occasions? Today we celebrated the 90th birthday of our friend, Marian, who is Judy's mama. They are both great friends of ours along with Judy's husband, Gene. We met at the church fellowship hall today which had been set up with food (lots of really good food) that had been prepared by Marian's family.
The celebration was well attended and I believe at least 50 people, maybe more, came and helped in the celebration. People came in from Canada, near where Marian and her husband once lived with their four children in Wisconsin, and a daughter came in from Chicago.
There was a camaraderie that is often seen where people get together and talk over old times, and laugh and eat. Many of the people who came are members of our church who have come to know Marian since she and her husband moved here about 6 or 7 years ago. Marian's husband died about 3 years ago, so she is a widow who lives alone but is never left alone because people just naturally gravitate toward her. Marian is a very outgoing, busy person, who never lets things get her down, even when they are going badly.

A little less than a year ago, Judy and her family had a birthday celebration for Gene's mother, who was 90 at the time. It too, was a lovely celebration, and people came from some distance to help her celebrate her life. Unfortunately, not very many days after the get together for Lois, she had a major stroke and after several hours, she passed away. She was a gentle little lady who had lived a full life and was ready to go. She had great faith, and I am happy to say that Marian does as well.

Nothing is more fun than getting together with folks that you know and love and have much in common with. I hope that you have had a lovely day today with someone you care for. It won't be long till time to go out and watch our hummingbirds. May you have a good night's rest.

God bless you. This is Blabbin' Grammy signing off for the day. More stuff tomorrow of some kind.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Hummingbirds


Howdy, You all,

A few days ago, I put up a hummingbird feeder, because I knew that we live in an area where they visit. I also planted some hummingbird vine that Imazo had given me. That very evening, I saw some hummingbirds come by and drink at the feeder. What a wonderful thing to observe! I am posting a picture of the feeder, but have no pictures yet of the little beauties feasting.


Interested in the habits and facts of these little creatures, I did some googling to get the information I wanted. I found out that their brains are larger proportionately to their body than that of any other birds. I also discovered that they can fly upward, backwards, forwards and can hover, and also can perch, but they never walk. Their feet are not made for walking, only perching or scratching their heads.


They have an unusual tongue, as well. They don't drink with their beaks; in fact, only open their beaks far enough to stick their long tongue into the nectar. They roll their tongues up into little straw-like tubes, forming troughs for the liquid. They lap the nectar kind of like cats lap milk or liquids.


The hummers eat insects as well as drinking nectar. I read that if you place overripe fruit near your feeders to attract fruit-loving flies, they can feed on the flies. It suggests that banana peels are really good for this purpose. The hummers need the insects to supply protein for their diet.


The hummers use their hands to fly; yeah, I know, you thought they used their wings. Well, it seems that they have extremely long "hand bones" to support the large primary feathers and enable rapid wing strokes while keeping the wings from bending in two. So, in a way, they almost fly with their hands.


These tiny birds only weigh from 3 - 4 ounces and eat about every 15-20 minutes. The humming sound that they make (I've never heard it, but I'm sure they do) is from singing with their hands. It is the humming of their wings that gives them their name.


Well, there you have it. A lot of info about these little valiant birds who interest so many people.


I found a lot more information about them, but decided this was probably enough for now.


More tomorrow from Blabbin' Grammy. Just think, only God could have created such a fascinating little creature! God blesses us so much, doesn't he?

Blabbin' Grammy signing off for now.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

My Sweetie-pie


Howdy, you all,


So many things to write about...so little time. I'd like to write about my Sweetie-pie today. My husband, Dub, (Walter), is a wonderful man, so caring and thoughtful, and he is slowly growing more forgetful and unknowing of the day or month of the year. I try to keep the day of the week and month written on our whiteboard on the fridge. Here we are together a few weeks ago at my brother, Hugh's, house .


He likes to sleep late in the mornings and I had told him night before last that he could sleep as late as he wished the next morning, because we were not scheduled to go to Knoxville to take my brother anywhere for an appointment. We do go quite often to Knoxville, ususally at least once a week and sometimes twice a week. He accompanies me and never complains about much of anything.


Well, yesterday morning, I got up and went out to water the flowers, and to put up a hummingbird pole to hang feeders for them. I also clipped the grass surrounding my roses, then put away the tools and came in to wash and eat breakfast. Then I went in to our bedroom to check on Dub where I thought he would still be sleeping. Lo and behold, he was up putting on his Sunday clothes. I asked him what he was doing and he said, "I'm getting dressed for church." I said, "I'll bet you're thinking about Marian's birthday celebration, aren't you?" He said, "Yes" and I told him that it was still a few days before that, and that it was Wednesday.


You see, Judy is having a celebration of her mother, Marian's, 90th birthday on Sunday the 27th at a drop in at the church. Marian turned 90 a week ago, and the best time to set the celebration for her friends is this Sunday.


Dub has kept the celebration in his mind and doesn't want to miss it. He quite often gets something on his mind and will question me about it several times. He sometimes no sooner asks a question, than he will ask it again within a few minutes. That is one of the characteristics of dementia. He has been diagnosed as having dementia, of which Alzheimer's is a form. He has had two siblings die of Alzheimer's, and I have been observing changes in his behavior over the past several years.


We have a lot in common in the way that we grew up, neither of us having wealth in the form of money, but having a wealth of love between family members. We both knew that we were loved by our families.


He walks around very quietly in our home, and is sometimes a little sneaky. He likes to go into the kitchen at night and find something to snack on. He is a diabetic and I have to watch very closely to see that he doesn't have too much in the way of sweet stuff.


His steps have grown slower over the past few years, he stumbles sometimes, and it takes him longer to get ready to go somewhere, but that is just the way it is when we grow older, isn't it? We have been married for nearly 32 years, and we can almost speak each other's thoughts on any given occasion. We have gone through a lot of trials together, and I like to think we have gotten stronger with them. I know the Lord has helped us to be strong and to rely on Him always.
We talk quite often of our children and grandchildren (they are actually his step, but he never thinks of them in that way) and look at their pictures often and always enjoy reading or hearing about what they are doing. We love spending time with them, and feel it is never enough. We are ever so proud of all their accomplishments and love to brag on them.

Dub has a wonderful sense of humor and it is quite often that he says something that just has me "rolling on the floor laughing". He is a kind and gentle person, and much respected by all who know him. He is a rock and a constant supporter, a strong friend
and true, a believer in the Lord. Dub is my staunchest encourager.


I love him dearly and pray that he will be with us for a long time yet, and that the dementia will continue to be slow progressing and not fast.


This is Blabbin' Grammy signing off for today. May God's grace and love be with each of you.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Happy Birthday, Noah!


Hello, again!

Today is my great grandson, Noah's, birthday. He is three years old. Isn't he a darling?

Here is his picture. To read more about him and his 3 siblings, go to:




Superstitions and Sayings

This may seem like a strange subject, but it came to my mind while ago, as I was sitting at the dinner table (noontime meal). The bottom of my foot was itching, and as I scratched at it with my other foot, I happened to remember what Mama used to say when we would say our foot itched. The standard comment was, "You are going to be walking on strange ground." (Meaning where we had never walked before). Of course, we would start thinking about where that could be.



Sometimes, if one of us had an ear that was itching, we would be told that we were going to hear good news. An ear that turned red would mean that someone was talking about us.



If a palm of the hand itched, that would indicate that we were going to shake hands with someone, or that we were going to get some money. We really liked that one.



Sometimes, while setting the table for a meal, we would accidentally place two like utensils at the same place which if they were knives they would indicate that two men were coming to visit, two spoons indicated two women were coming to visit, and two forks would indicate 2 children.



One of our favorite superstitions was when one of us got the hiccoughs. When one got the hiccoughs, it indicated that someone was thinking about us. We would guess a person for each time we hiccoughed, and when we had guessed it, the hiccoughs would stop.



Dreams were another thing that were discussed and different things took on special meanings. If we dreamed of snakes, it took on significance if we had killed the snakes or not. If we had killed the snake, then we had defeated an enemy. If not, then an enemy would gain control over us, and that was not good. If we dreamed of water, and it was clear water, it was supposed to portend good. If we dreamed of muddy water, that was not a good dream. Also, "A Saturday night dream, and Sunday morning o'ertold, always proves true to young and old." In other words, if one dreams on Saturday night and tells it before breakfast on Sunday, it would come true.



You may wonder why we placed so much significance upon superstitions. I think it came from the fact that my Mama's mother was half Cherokee, and anyone that knows any thing about Indians knows that they are very superstitious. So, since Mama grew up with superstitions they were just passed on to us.



Of course, I don't believe them , but it is fun to talk about them. One that my Mama used to her benefit was when she would say, "My right eye itches." What that meant to us, was that it signified she was possibly going to get angry and that meant trouble for us. It was usually when we kids were maybe arguing or doing something that she didn't want us to do.

Some "sayings" that she had, included "there is a man in jail wantin' out" meant that we had asked for something that we wanted, and that was her reply meaning we weren't going to get what we wanted anymore than that man was getting out of jail.
Sometimes when we aggravated her almost beyond her endurance, she would tell us that we were "flirting with the undertaker". Ha.

One of the most influential expressions that we all learned from her was this quote:
"Things that you do, do with your might; things done by halves, are never done right"
She ingrained into each of us a work ethic and determination that has stood us all in good stead. She was not afraid of work, and she taught us all to work. She also taught us that two wrongs never make a right. She was honest to a fault. More about Mama later.

Well, this is all for this evening. God blesses each of us, and we should never forget it.
Blabbin' Grammy signing off for the night.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Thoughts of Summers Past


Howdy, Friends,

Just sittin' here thinkin' about how summers used to be on the farm here in the most outer reaches of New Market Community.

It is raining this evening, and it reminded me of the days that the corn was close to being "laid by", which means that we didn't have much else to do to it. Oh, there was some hoeing to do to it, and then there was the tobacco that had to be "wormed", which consisted of pulling the tobacco worms off, and either stepping on them or throwing them on the hard ground and splatting them.


My brother, John, three years younger than I am, would put them on his shirt, where they would stay, fastening themselves on, and then after collecting quite a few, he would then proceed to splat them on the ground.


Well, when it was raining during the day, I would hide away in the side room that was on the front of the house, and lie on the army cot that we had in there, and read. Our roof was made of tin, and oh, the sound of the rain on it was so wonderful!


Reading has always been one of my favorite activities, from the time I was in the second grade through tomorrow and tomorrow.


Near the end of summer, before school started, was tobacco cutting time. Wooden sticks were gathered for the cutting, and spaced out in the tobacco patch for the "spearing" of the stalks onto the sticks, as each stalk was cut. When we would come to the stick, the person cutting the stalks would put the stick straight up into the ground and then place a metal point on the top of the stick. The stalk would then be cut near the ground and it would be "speared" onto the stick and brought close to the ground. The next stalk would be cut and speared onto the stick, and brought close to the one just placed on it. And so on, until the stick was full, then on to the next stick.


Of course, I never got to help in the cutting of the tobacco, because I was a girl and too small. But that is okay, it was hot work anyway, and I never cared too much about working out in the hot sun. Ha.


John and I had a lot of fun on the farm as well as working. It was a new and different life for us, but we adapted pretty quickly. You know, kids can always find fun stuff to do. One thing we found was an old telephone (wall type) that was probably from the 1920's, and of course, we proceeded to take that apart to see what it was like inside.

And then, we found an old coffee mill, and of course, we had to take it apart too.


There was a lot to explore on the farm, because it had been around for so long. We also gained a dog soon after we moved out here. Our Uncle John (one of Dad's brothers) thought John Lee needed a dog, so he sent one out. We named him Pedro, and nicknamed him Pete. Pete was a German Shepherd, and was supposed to be a guard dog, and he would bark if anyone came into the yard that he didn't know. However, if that person spoke his name, he would stop barking and wag his tail. Some guard dog, hey?
Well, that is about it for today. My memories of life on the farm come back to me more easily, now that I am once again living on land that was once ours. More later.
May each of you have a good night's rest and may you be aware of God's blessings.
This is Blabbin' Grammy signing off for the night.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Leatherbritches

Howdy, You all,
I sat on my front porch this afternoon and broke and strung green beans to prepare for our supper this evening. As I sat there, breaking beans, tossing them into a pan, I started thinking about years past when I would help prepare beans for the winter. Sometimes, we would sit for hours, wielding a double-threaded needle, and thread green beans that had been broken onto the string, then they would be hung up to dry.
In the wintertime, we would then cook them to eat. They were called leatherbritches, or shuck beans. The name leatherbritches came from the fact that the green part of the bean would toughen up as it dried. I don't know who first called them leatherbritches, but the name certainly fit, didn't it? Have you ever eaten them? Or have you helped prepare them for the winter?
Speaking of supper, I also fixed some summer yellow crookneck squash, boiled some white potatoes, and sliced tomatoes from our little tomato patch out back of our house. I sliced some fresh cucumbers, and baked some corn meal muffins, and we had a meal fit for a king.
Imazo's sister provided us with the green beans, squash, cucumbers, and a head of cabbage fresh from her garden. Thank you, dear friend!
Well, that is all for today from Blabbin' Grammy! It has been a long day, and I really must say good evening. Love to all of you for now. Blabbin' Grammy signing off.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Sisters-Friends


Today, Dub and I, and Hugh and Imazo went to Madisonville to visit Imazo's sisters, Dorothy and Barbara who live close to each other. We visited in Dorothy's home, and Barbara came with her husband, Reath, who is a farmer.

What a wonderful time we all had, sitting and talking about times past, and looking at old pictures Dorothy had of family and friends. Imazo and her sisters and brothers grew up in the Madisonville area. The picture above is of (left to right): Imazo, Dorothy, and Barbara. Aren't they lovely ladies? I certainly think so.

We laughed, enjoying stories that we each were telling and sharing. Barbara's husband, Reath, is a wonderful storyteller, and tells about things that have happened to him and to others he knew. Barbara and Reath have daughters who are grown and have children.

Dorothy lost her only child, Linda, to an illness several years ago, caring for her for many years as an invalid, then lost her husband to illness soon after that. She remarried and lived happily several years with a second husband, only to lose him to diabetes and its side effects. Dorothy also cared for her mother through her time of illness and passing. Dorothy is a very strong individual, who has come through several of life's trials.

The three sisters, Imazo, Dorothy, and Barbara, have another sister, Lois, who lives in Ohio, and at present is in a nursing home taking physical therapy due to a recent stroke. They are hoping to soon see her out of the nursing home and back in her home.

While we were visiting today, we had some delicious cake and coffee with them, and we sat on the front porch and talked about how things had changed in the area during the time they have lived there. Dorothy's home is a wonderful old country house surrounded by all kinds of beautiful flowers that she and her husband planted quite a few years ago.

We left with some fresh vegetables, provided by Barbara and Reath, and intend to have several meals from them: yellow squash, green beans, cabbage, and cucumbers. Yum!

We left around mid afternoon, and decided to go back a different way. I know absolutely nothing about the area, so Hugh directed me (I was driving). We passed a certain curve, and Hugh said, "take the next road to the right", so I did. Then a few minutes later, Imazo said, "I don't remember this road", and Hugh said, "I am sure this must be it, there's that flag we usually see". I said, "Wow! What if the flag had been moved?" Well, we drove on, and on, and on, and the road changed from having a double yellow line and being well paved, into just one line, then into no line, still paved, and then into a dirt road, and by this time, we decided it was necessary to turn around and go back.

So, we went back and found that the actual road that Hugh was thinking of was just a little farther beyond the one that we had mistakenly turned onto. So, on we went and found our way back out where we needed to be, and on to home.

After we arrived back in Knoxville we stopped and picked up some sandwiches for supper. We went back to Hugh's and Imazo's and shared our repast.

Imazo and I had a wedding shower to attend at 6 p.m. for our sister-in-law Mae's great granddaughter, Tiffany. It was a gathering of people who are related to Tiffany, so it was a very cordial group. Tiffany's Aunt Lisa, who is Mae's grand daughter, and Lisa's mother, Doris, were giving the shower, and it was so much fun.

Lisa's little boy, Bryson, is almost 3 years old, and charmed everyone performing song and dance for us. Tiffany's little sister, Ambrea, is a little darling who is 10 months old and is just beginning to walk, She walks around holding her arms out, keeping her balance while she teeters about. It was the kind of shower where everyone felt at ease and had great cameraderie.

It was a wonderful day, and we enjoyed it so very much!

That is all today from Blabbin' Grammy. May God's peace and joy rest on each of you.

Good bye for tonight. More tomorrow. Hope you make it to church and worship with your fellow Christians.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Today with Friends

Howdy, Readers!
I want to share how this day was spent. Yesterday was the 90th birthday of my friend, Marian. Since I could not spend yesterday with her, we went out to lunch together, with her daughter, Judy, who is also a dear friend of ours, and whom I knew before I knew Marian. Marian moved to East Tn. from Florida a few years ago, into a house that is just a few doors up from Judy and Gene.

Quite often, we share meals with Judy, Gene, Marian, and Mark and Allie. Sometimes we eat at Gene and Judy's, sometimes with Marian, sometimes with Mark and Allie. The seven of us love to get together and share food and fellowship. Sometimes we play a board game or dominoes. We always have a really great time.
Judy, Marian, and I went to a lovely little eating place that used to be a tea room. They are no longer called a tea room, but still serve the same wonderful fare.
After we ate, we ordered dessert, but could not eat it all, so, of course, we got the "to go" boxes. The dessert really needed ice cream, so we decided to take it home and add the ice cream.

Judy's granddaughters, Tori and Marti, beautiful little girls and so well behaved, came to Judy's home for the rest of today and tomorrow. So before we picked up the ice cream, we all decided to do some shopping and went to Big Lots.

We stopped then at the grocery store and picked up the ice cream, and went back to Marian's house, where we added the ice cream to the chocolate lava cake dessert, and we chowed down.

As you can see, nothing spectacular happened today, but we had a wonderful time chatting, eating, and just generally kicking back. Judy's grandchildren (and, of course, Marian's great grandchildren) really love to draw pictures. They each have a sketch book provided by Marian, that they can draw in when they are at Marian's. The sketch books will be wonderful keepsakes, and Judy has them date each picture with the day's date.

My husband had a wonderful day of peace and quiet where he could just kick back and do whatever he pleased and eat whatever he chose to. Every once in awhile he loves to do that. As you may remember from past posts, he is a diabetic, so I try to watch his diet. Tomorrow, we (Dub and I, and Hugh and Imazo) travel to Madisonville, TN to visit Imazo's sister, Dorothy. We always look forward to seeing her.

This is all for today from Blabbin' Grammy. God bless each of you and give you a good night's rest.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

More about Life on the Farm


Howdy,

Life on the farm settled into a routine, as most lives do, when there is repetition of duties, and chores. In February of 1948, we learned what setting out a tobacco bed was like. The ground had to be prepared. Then there was the sowing of millions of tiny, tiny seeds. The plot was surrounded by what looked like small round logs, and then covered with a thin cloth called canvas. It was cold -cold- cold in the biting wind, but it had to be done.


It was in February just after we had moved to New Market, when one Sunday afternoon we got word that my dad's mother had passed away that morning in her sleep. One of dad's brothers came out to the farm to tell us. So we had to make the trip in to Knoxville to attend the wake (which was held in her home, with the casket in her living room) and then for the funeral. The picture here is of her. I will soon do a post on just her.

I entertained the kids that were there by telling them silly stories, which I made up on the spot. It also entertained one of my dad's sisters who was sometimes not quite right mentally, so she was easily entertained. I think it was then that I discovered my penchant for telling stories.

Life on the farm could be fun as well as difficult. My sister, Margaret, and I would often sing together while doing the chore of dishwashing. Since we had no sink inside the house, we had to do dishes in dishpans. We had to heat the water on the cook stove in the kitchen, and then we stood at the kitchen table to wash and rinse and dry the dishes. I absolutely hated doing the dishes, and about the time she got them washed and put in the other pan, I would have to run down to the outhouse, and hope that they would be done by the time I got back. Sometimes, she took pity on me, and finished them. Sometimes, she did not. Oh, well, I thought, at least I tried.

We would sing songs like, "Bringing in the Sheaves" and "Old Black Joe" and "Heavenly Sunshine", "Kneel at the Cross".

When we first moved out here, there were several outbuildings. One of them was a "potato house" which was just a lean-to-shed where potatoes had been stored to keep through the winter. We found lots of small sweet potatoes, which were actually not much bigger around than a couple of fingers wide, but we washed and baked them, and since we were hungry, they were just absolutely delicious.


We bought a hog to raise, and fed it what we called "slop" which was just left over stuff from our table with liquid added. We had a pig lot close to the barn, where we kept the pig. The next winter, we killed the hog, and with the help of neighbors, we cleaned (I say "we" but I had nothing to do with the actual killing or cleaning of it) the hog, and my mom and sister fried up the sausage made from it, and canned it. Yum... it was good...but probably all that good sausage we had to eat may have had something to do with the fact that five of the six of the children wound up with heart trouble in our older days.


My mom and dad prepared the hams and shoulders with brown sugar, and salt and cured them so that we would have meat later on. We also cooked the liver and that is another meat that I dearly love. Any kind of liver is wonderfully tasty.


We ordered baby chicks through the farm bureau and when they came, we had to keep them warm in the house until they were old enough to live without freezing. They only have down, no feathers, when they are little. The sound of "peep, peep" could be heard all night coming from the kitchen where we had to keep a fire in the cookstove to keep them warm.


Our house only had 3 regular size rooms (even at that they were small). In the room at the end near the road, we had two iron bedsteads, and Margaret and I slept in one, John and Hugh slept in the other one, and in the living room where we had a fireplace is where Mom and Dad's iron bedstead was. The kitchen was cold all winter after supper, when the fire was allowed to go out.

There was a side room that was on the front of the house, and in the summer time, John slept out there. Our bedroom was so cold, that it took a lot of quilts on it to keep us warm, and I like to tell that we had so many on it, that we had to get out of bed in order to turn over. ha. There was a crack under neath the door so that when it snowed, we would wake up and see where snow had come into the bedroom.

Well, that is enough for today. Maybe more tomorrow. I am just getting started good, telling about life on the farm, but I don't want to bore any one. May God bless each of you and give you a good night's rest. This is Blabbin' Grammy signing off for now.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Early Days on the Farm




Howdy, You All,


I thought I would write a little bit about our early days out on the farm, when we first moved into the country at New Market, back in December of 1947.



We had moved from Knoxville, and it was quite an eye-opener for John and I, because we didn't remember a lot of life as it had occured in Possum Valley when I was in my very early years, and John was even younger.

Now, we were 14 and 11 years old,respectively, and everything was a whole new ball game from living in Knoxville for the past 6 or 7 years. Out here, in New Market, in our house there was no electricity, no running water, and of course, no indoor bathroom. We just had 3 and !/2 rooms and a path. The water came from a cistern on the back porch, and in the summertime, it often went dry and we had to carry water from our nearest neighbor about a half mile away.

The water in the cistern was actually rain water that ran into the cistern when it rained. We also had water barrels at the end of the house. We used that water to wash our hair and to take our Saturday night baths. Yes, that is when we bathed. We "cleaned up" in a wash basin during the week.

The day we moved, we rode out to the farm in the mover's truck, and it was raining. The farm looked desolate in the rain, and the house looked more like a shack than a house. (actually, it was. ha.)

We moved on a weekend, and I was half way through ninth grade, and John was half way through sixth grade. We went to school on the following Monday, and met the other children. I am sure they looked on us as "city kids".

We both had a lot of catching up to do, because the kids were way ahead of us in the schoolbooks. When we would come home in the evenings it was already nearly darktime, and we would have to study by lamplight at the kitchen table. No radio to study by, as we had done in Knoxville, listening to "Terry and The Pirates" and "The Lone Ranger" and "Jack Armstrong, the all-American Boy".

I soon gained a reputation at school for being smart, because I had to study so hard to pass the semester tests right after Christmas and made really good grades. I always raised my hand in class to answer questions, and pretty soon I had made some good friends, some of whom I still know and am friends with. I studied hard, and my brother, John, who has a Mensa IQ, never carried a book home.

My mom had to continue on working in Knoxville, so she would come home on the weekends, riding the Greyhound bus, and getting off at New Market and going to the grocery store to get groceries for the week to come, and the delivery truck would bring her to the house with the groceries. We always looked forward to seeing her come home on Friday evening or Saturday morning. She rented a room at one of our Aunt's house, a sister of my dad. She had to be at work every morning (M-F) at 7 a.m. and then she got off at 3 p.m. On Sunday afternoons, she would walk back the two and a half miles to New Market and catch the Greyhound back to Knoxville.

My dad farmed, along with us kids helping him. My sister, Margaret, who was 22 at the time we moved, helped him in the fields sometimes and also kept the house and rode herd on the rest of us kids. My brother, Hugh, was still in High School at the time we moved and he stayed in Knoxville for one year during the week at my Aunt's house as well, and finished his last year of school.

During the summer time, John and I had to help, along with Hugh, to chop out corn, and tobacco, and in the spring time, on the weekends, when mom was at home, we picked wild strawberries, wild dewberries, and in the summer we picked wild blackberries. She and Margaret worked hard putting them into jams and jellies, and pies, of course. There were some apple trees in a little orchard, and we picked those and my mom made some of the best apple preserves anyone could find. Yum. I can still taste them.

My dad plowed with two mules, Joe and Jerry, and I never went into the barn lot when they were out. I was scared to death of them. Where we are living now, I can look across the road and see the barn, and I remember how our life was then.

I am placing some pictures at the top, of my dad, and my mom and the old house we lived in. Hope you enjoy them. More story tomorrow.

This is Blabbin' Grammy signing off for today. God bless each of you and give you a good night's rest.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

My Friend Dot


I have a dear friend named Dot. She is a longtime friend. We went to Carson-Newman College together in the early 1960's. She and I were buddies for three years. I graduated and then we lost track of each other. Here is a picture of Dot and her granddaughter, Alison, at my church's Festival of Tables.


When we were both freshmen, she could not afford to go home over Thanksgiving, so I invited her to my home, because I lived just a few miles away from Jefferson City, where C-N is located.

A few years ago, she started trying to find me, and finally, just a month or so after we moved back from Florida, (two years ago) she talked to a friend that we have in common, who knew that my last name had changed since Dot knew me, told her my last name, and she called me. How very wonderfully surprised I was, and still am, that she had found me. I have thought of Dot many times over the years since we had seen each other, wondering what had happened to her, and what she was doing.


We both got our degrees in teaching and she went back to her hometown in south central Tennessee and got married, had a child and taught for many years.

What a wonderful time we had when we saw each other again. We shared pictures, stories, and laughed over many things.

I discovered when we saw each other, that she was suffering from diabetes. I know what she was going through, because my husband is a long-time diabetic.

Last year, I invited her to our Festival of Tables that we have each spring at our church and she came. The Festival of Tables is a time that the ladies of our church get together to have a good time together. Different ladies who choose to, decorate a table with a theme of their choice and invite 7 other ladies to sit at their table and enjoy the food, fellowship, and hear an interesting speaker that we always have.

Dot graced us with her presence again this year, and brought her granddaughter, Alison, with her. We talk occasionally and also e-mail one another. Recently, Dot has had to begin dialysis, and has been doing that successfully. Then this morning, I received an e-mail that she is going to have to undergo triple by-pass surgery, due to blockages in three arteries.

Dot is a very brave lady, but naturally is somewhat nervous over having to go through this procedure. What I would like to propose is this: I would like to ask all of you who read my blog, please remember Dot in your prayers, that she would be calm and at peace with the surgery. She is a very strong Christian, but I know that she would appreciate the prayers of fellow Christians. Also, if you would add her name to your church's prayer list, I am sure she would appreciate it, too.
My friend, Dot, is loved and appreciated by many people, and is a giver by nature. She is an upbeat lady, and I am sure you would love her, too, if you knew her.
That is all for today from Blabbin' Grammy. Oops, except for one thing. If you would love to see something really really precious, go to the following blogspot and see my darling great grandchildren in a 58 second video.
Have a good night. More tomorrow. Love from Blabbin'Grammy

Monday, July 14, 2008

This and That

Howdy, Friends,
How are you all doing today? We have been to Knoxville, visiting with my brother, Hugh, and taking him to see one of his several doctors. As you may know, the older we get, the more doctors we are priviledged to see. His health is certainly not getting any better, but is kind of holding his own against congestive heart failure and some of the accompanying ailments that go along with it. Other appointments are coming up soon.
Do you dream? Is it in black and white or technicolor? Mine are always in technicolor, and I dream every night, sometimes in the afternoon, if I take a nap, I may dream. Last night's dreams were of my sister, Margaret, and we were doing some kind of project with kids. I think I was teaching (my occupation when I worked) in the school library. Somehow or other, I can't escape dreaming about teaching school or the work I did in the school library. Isn't that funny? What do you dream about?
What kind of television do you watch? Or do you watch? I love Game Show Network because sometimes it challenges me and I can answer questions right along with the contestants.
We got new gravel delivered and deposited on our long dirt driveway. It still has to be evened out, and Mark has said someone would be coming over to take care of it for us. What a wonderful friend and landlord he is!
Tomorrow is another day, and Dub and I are headed in to Knoxville to take Hugh to his family doctor for a regular checkup and then we will all go out for a meal. If there is one thing we do well together, it is eat and have fellowship.
God bless you all, and have a good evening. I think I will just go take a little afternoon nap, and see what good things I can dream up. Bye for now from Blabbin' Grammy til tomorrow.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

A Little Bad-Mouthin'


Howdy, You-All,

Every once in awhile, things just kind of don't turn out the way you would hope for, and you just gotta get feelin's out in the open. Well, this past week has kind of had a few things happen like that, and here goes!


First off, Wednesday was a trial for me, what with sittin' so long in the nice Big Chair at the dentist's office. Like I said before, he was just as nice (along with his assistants) as could be, but I had some repercussions from the firm grip he had (and needed to have) on my chin for such a long time. I could joke and say he was just trying to keep me from jumping out of the Big Chair. He did, however leave a little bruise on my chin which did not show up until a couple of days later, and then yesterday, fully developed into the bruise on my chin, evidenced in the picture you see at the top of my post. Now, since I am not a raving beauty, it really doesn't matter enough to rant and rave. In fact, hardly anyone at church this morning said anything about it. You know that people notice, but are too polite to comment.

Second bad-mouthin' is my ongoing battle with AT&T. Yep, got a new bill, and sure enough, they hadn't taken off the charge for high-speed internet for last of May and all of June, but added the charge for July!

Goin' to have to call them tomorrow and rip a strip of hide from someone's skin. Politely, of course. No bad language.

Third bad-mouthin': We went to Ruby Tuesday for lunch today, the second time in two weeks.(Went last Sunday as well, and the steak my husband ordered last week was tough, they replaced it with a second tough one). Dub always orders coffee to drink, but as many coffee drinkers, he likes it hot. Well, needless to say, it was like strong luke-warm ditchwater. Sent it back. Back a new cup came, just as cold as the first. Four times it was brought and still not hot.I am talking luke-warm here. The meat in my chicken pot pie was tough and dry. I did not send it back, but we have ex-d off Ruby Tuesday's from our list of acceptable and preferred eating places. No more will we grace them with our presence, but they probably won't really miss us.

Well, my gripin' is done for now. I hold no animosity toward my dentist, by the way; just wanted to let you know that sometimes things just happen and there's nothing we can do about it except laugh and make jokes about it and go on.
That is all for now, from Blabbin' Grammy. May God's grace and peace rest upon each of you. Bye for now.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Dessert, Anyone?


Hey there, You All,

Isn't it wonderful when you can get up to clean dishes without doing a lot of the work? No, little Brownies who cleaned house in the childhood fairy tales did not clean them. Instead, I had two dinner guests and an automatic dishwasher that did the job.


Yes, we had friends over to have supper with us last evening and we sat around and just talked for about two and a half hours following supper. We usually play dominoes after eating, but we continued our supper conversation on into the evening, about first one thing and another.


The friends who came over are two couples, Mark and Allie, and Gene and Judy and her mom,Marian. I know you have already read how I take Marian out for lunch fairly often. She will be 90 in about a week or so. So we had a very congenial group of seven people eating supper together.


I had made a couple of large bowls of a pasta dish, made up of hot cooked macaroni, mixed together with hot spaghetti sauce, some chopped up cooked pork tenderloin, and topped with grated cheeses (Mexican 4 cheeses found in packages at grocery store) then placed into the oven until cheese is thoroughly melted. (When we started serving, Gene asked,"Who are the other 7 people who are going to be eating with us?")

I had also made a big plate of deviled eggs, and Judy brought a pan of freshly cooked beets, and prepared at my home a pan of tender crisp zucchini. She had sliced the zucchini into small chunks, put two tablespoons of olive oil into the pan, along with a large sweet onion which she caramelized over high heat, then added the zucchini and kept it stirred until cooked just tender crisp. It was delicious!


To accompany the pasta dish, I had toasted some garlic bread, and Voila`, we had supper.


Following supper,Mark and Gene took the second bowl of pasta to a nearby Samaritan House where homeless people live. While we ladies waited, we cleaned up the dishes, and just talked and laughed, having a great time.

When the guys came back, I took out the dessert which I had prepared 24 hours previously. (see picture at top of post) This dessert is called "Chocolate Eclair" and is quite delicious. It is also a favorite of my grandson, Daniel. The first time I ate it was at the home of my daughter, Carol. She always prepares it for Daniel when she knows he will be coming home for a visit. I served the Chocolate Eclair with fresh strawberries to accompany it.


Needless to say, when we got through with the dessert a little bit later, only a small amount of it remained. It can be safely eaten by diabetics, because I used sugar free ingredients in most of it. For those of you who would like the recipe, here it is (courtesy of Carol).

Ingredients:

2 small pkgs of sugar free vanilla instant pudding

3 cups cold milk (low fat)

1- 8 oz container of cool whip (sugar free)

1 container reduced sugar fudge cake frosting (heat frosting in container for 30 seconds in microwave and stir to thoroughly mix)

box chocolate graham crackers

Mix together instant pudding, milk, then add thawed cool whip. Place layer of grahams in serving dish, add layer of pudding/cool whip mixture, another layer of grahams,layer of frosting. If you wish to use a 9x13 glass dish to serve it in, stop there. If you wish to use a compote, as I did, continue with your layering until your cool whip mixture and fudge frosting are used up, and end with a few crumbs of graham crackers on top of last layer of fudge. Yum, yum.

(The compote dish came from Wal-mart, really inexpensive)

(see picture at top)

A wonderful time was had by all, and after spending some time on the computer, I went to bed, knowing my kitchen wouldn't be a living nightmare when I got up this morning.

That is all from Blabbin' Grammy today - Hope you all have a wonderful day, and God Bless each of you and yours. Bye for now.



Friday, July 11, 2008

Tomorrow is Ellie's Birthday

Tomorrow is a special day for a special little girl. Her name is Elizabeth Maria-Vanessa and she is our great granddaughter who was born in Guatemala and adopted by my grandson, Pastor Daniel and his wife, Whitney and their other 3 children. They all compose a family unit of six. They call her Ellie, and she is loved passionately by all of us.


Her adoption became final in January of this year. She has made great strides in becoming Americanized. Gramps and I have yet to see her in person, and are looking forward to the occasion!


If you would like to see her picture and those of her brothers and sister, (and her parents), go to http://waiting4number4.blogspot.com/

and you will be able to read all about them and their adoption journey, and the rest of it since then.


In case you are wondering how I got the name Grammy, it was almost by accident. Our great grandchildren have quite a few sets of grand parents and great grandparents, so we were trying to decide what they could call us to identify us apart from all the others.


I suggested that we could be called Granny and Gramps. One of the boys heard me say Granny and thought I said Grammy. I thought, "wow, that is even better than Granny" so I became Grammy to them.


So here is our wish to you, Dear Ellie!


We wish you the happiest birthday tomorrow, and many happy returns of the day! We love you..and hope to see you next month sometime .Grammy and Gramps

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Music In My Life


Howdy, Friends,

I'm just a country girl at heart, because I spent a lot of time growing up in country surroundings. I also love country music, and grew up in the era of the Mid-day Merry- Go-Round Radio program on WNOX radio in the 1940's.


One could hear the music and talk from that program while walking around anywhere in our neighborhood around noon time till one o'clock in the afternoon because back then, no one had air conditioning and all the windows in houses were wide open. One could hear people playing musical instruments (mostly guitar and mandolin, and the fiddle), and singing country music.

Lowell Blanchard was the emcee and would joke around with the people on the show. Singers like Molly Bee and Hotshot Elmer could be heard every day, along with Homer and Jethro who were a comic act and also sang. There were others that I can't remember. It has been too long.

I remember a lot of the lyrics of songs that I learned in the war years, while my brothers were in the service. One of them was called, "The Letter Edged in Black", which was about a mother who had died and a letter was sent to her son, to tell him about it. Another was about a boy who had died in the war and it started out with the words, "The postman delivered a letter, it filled her dear heart with joy, but she didn't know til she read the insides, it was the last one from her darling boy."

My mom knew a whole slew of sad songs and she would sing them for us. One was called, "Put My Little Shoes Away." This was about a little boy who was sick and told his mother to give his toys to his playmates, but not his shoes. Another was "Please Mr. Conductor" about a boy who was rushing home to see his mother before God took her away, and he didn't have the money to pay for his ticket. He pleads with the conductor not to throw him off the train.

She also sang one about the Knoxville Girl who was killed by a cruel man named Leo Frank. She sang another about two little children who died in the snow, because they had no home and their mother was dead. Then there was the one called "Hello, Central" which is about a little girl calling a central operator and asking for Heaven so that she can talk to her mother who is underneath the golden stair in heaven.

Oh, yes, she sang a lot of tear jerkers while we were growing up and we would always be asking her to sing another one. Sometimes she would and sometimes not, depending upon the mood she was in. We all grew up loving music, and singing, as well.

Quite often, we would gather around while living in Possum Valley in that old cabin, and would sing songs from the Stamps-Baxter song book that was a Christian paper back quartet song book. I am quite sure that many times we butchered the songs and didn't really know all the tunes, but we had a wonderful time.

During my pre teen and teenage years, I listened to a lot of country music, as well as popular music and quite often learned all the lyrics, some of which I even remember to this day. When I got married in 1952 and moved to Indiana with my husband, I looked for good country music on the radio up there, but the closest I could get to it was a radio program called, "Nancy Lee and the Hilltoppers" on WOWO.

For many years it has been my pleasure and priviledge to sing in our church choir, and I do love Christian music. It is uplifting more than any other kind of music for me. Our mom would also sing a lot of the hymns for us.

The picture at the top of today's post is of my mother taken soon after she and my dad were married . I am sure that she is responsible in a great way for our family's love of music. Thank you, Mama. I miss you still, even though 35 years have passed since you passed on to your reward. I know you are singing with the angels even now.
That is all from Blabbin' Grammy today. May God continue to bless each of you.
See you tomorrow.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

My Time in the Big Chair

Well, believe it or not, I survived the three and a half hours in the dentist's chair today. Yes, it was nerve-wracking, but then it always is. Not the dentist's fault by any means, because he is a lovely, caring person who goes out of his way to make it as pleasant an experience as possible.

Let me tell you of some of my experiences from an early age sitting in the "Big Chair".

I think possibly I may have gotten off on the wrong foot, so to speak, with dentists. My first memory of going to the dentist was when I was about six years old. I had a tooth that was hurting me, and so my mom said to dad, " Well, Jim, I guess you had better take her to the dentist." So my Uncle Oney came over and took us in his car to the dentist's office.

We got to the Medical Arts Building in Knoxville where the dentist's office was located. We went up in the elevator (my first ride in one) and I was already nervous from that experience. My stomach felt like it didn't come up with us. Then on into the dentist's office where I looked around and didn't see any friendly faces. I did hear a kid hollering "no, no, no," from another room. I looked up into my dad's face, and he just smiled at me.

Into the dentist's office we walked in a few minutes, I with great trepidation. He ushered me over to the big chair sitting in the center of the little room. It had a tray with all kinds of stuff on it. He asked me to open my mouth, and I did (because I was a very obedient child at that time).

The dentist then reached into my mouth and felt around. I looked up at him, and saw that he was looking out the window. I said, "You are not even looking into my mouth!" He told me in no uncertain terms that he knew exactly what he was doing, and didn't have to look in there. Well! That was it for me. As far as I was concerned, he was a smart alec. He then put some stuff on my tooth, and pulled it. That finished it--I decided right then that no more trips to the dentist.

Ha!

Several years later, when I was the mother of a six year old, and a 3 year old, (age 25) I had to go to the dentist when we lived in Warsaw, Indiana, and begin having jaw teeth pulled that were rotten. I guess I showed that dentist when I was six that dentists were not on my priority list. Unfortunately, it had its own effects.

The dentist in Warsaw, informed me (as he was extracting wisdom teeth in pieces, drilling and prying them out) that he really enjoyed that kind of work. I said, "I'm glad someone is enjoying it, I certainly am not." It took several trips to have that work finished and fit me with upper and lower partials. I have been wearing partials for fifty years now, and have had one of them replaced with a full upper set of choppers.

I have had other dentist experiences, some good (well as good as they could be, since about 30 years ago I developed an allergy to some of the anesthetics that are used in dentistry). The allergy is one reason that I so much dread going to the dentist these days.

Well, enough of my anecdotes for today. At least, now you know, and I thank God, I survived my time in the Big Chair today.
God Bless you all and may His grace and love rest on each of you this evening and tonight.

Forwards

Howdy, Friends!
I'll bet that you, as an e-mailer, get lots of "forwards", don't you? I know I certainly do. Sometimes I read them all, sometimes, I don't. I really enjoy reading them when I have the time and inclination. I also send them on sometimes.

I love the jokes, especially the dumb blonde ones, (Please forgive me if you are blonde and object to them- I know a person doesn't have to be blonde to exhibit dumbness, it is so simple anybody can do it).

I also like the inspirational ones -sometimes someone sends me music that is beautiful.

Yesterday, I received this one, and I thought, "I know this one has been around before, but it says so much and says it so well, I am going to post it on my blog tomorrow." So here it is:

LEMONS AND SUGAR
This should probably be taped to your bathroom mirror where one could read it every day.
You may not realize it, but it is 100% true.
1. There are at least two people in this world that you would die for.
2. At least 15 people in this world love you in some way.
3. The only reason anyone would ever hate you is because they want to be just like you.
4. A smile from you can bring happiness to anyone, even if they don't like you.
5. Every night, SOMEONE thinks about you before they go to sleep.
6. You mean the world to someone.
7. You are special and unique.
8. Someone that you don't even know exists loves you.
9. When you make the biggest mistake ever, something good comes from it.
10. When you think the world has turned its back on you, take another look.
11. Always remember the compliments you received.
Forget about the rude remarks.
12. And always remember....when life hands you Lemons, ask for Sugar and call me over!
Good friends are like stars. You don't always see them,
But you know they are always there.
I would rather have one rose and a kind word from a friend while I am here,
Than a whole truckload when I am gone.
Happiness keeps you Sweet,
Trials keep you Strong,
Sorrows keep you Human,
Life keeps you Humble,
Success keeps you Glowing,
But only God keeps you Going.
Well, friends, it's off to the dentist in a couple of hours. Shiver, groan, and shake in my shoes.
More later from Blabbin' Grammy. God Bless Each of You.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

More Memories






Greetings on this overcast, rainy day!



We went to visit my brother, Hugh, and his wife, Imazo, today, and to carry them, along with our oldest brother's widow, Mae, who is almost 89 and still getting around really well, to breakfast at the Cracker Barrel, which we try to do at least once a week.

We got to talking about when Mae met Bill, my oldest brother. It seems that Bill and she met on the steps of a church there in Knoxville back in the late 1930's. Bill was dating a friend of Mae's, and decided to kind of keep looking around.

Bill was only 17 years old at the time, and Mae was also 17, but he told her that he was 22, and she says he looked older than 17, so she believed him. He wore a dark suit, and a black hat, and looked the age he said he was.

Well, that particular evening, they had been to a revival at one of the churches, but not together. She was with her girl friend, that Bill had been dating and he met them there on the steps. It would seem that once he saw Mae, he was really taken with her, and he asked if he could walk her home. She said yes, and that was the beginning of their courtship.

After courting for some time, they decided to get married, and she had to get her dad to sign for her to get married, and she was surprised when Bill said he had to get his dad to sign for him. She said, "but you're 22 and don't need him to sign for you". He said, "well, actually, yes, I do, because I'm the same age as you are."

Mae and Bill rode in the back of her dad's old truck, freezing nearly to death in the falling snow, and her dad had a flat tire on the truck, but he got them to her brother's house till he could get the tire fixed.

They went to get our dad to sign for Bill and Dad was in the middle of killing hogs. It was late in the year and was snowing. Dad was so mad, because he had to quit what he was doing and go sign for them to get married.

Mae and Bill shared a love of baseball and they both worked at the Smokey's stadium in Knoxville selling hot dogs and popcorn, and also picking up bottles and cleaning up the stadium after the games. Mae told me today that if it hadn't been for the work they did there, they wouldn't have been able to have food to eat. In later years, they loved going to baseball games and were avid fans of the Atlanta Braves.

A couple of years later, Norma, my niece, was born to them, and not long after that, America entered World War II, and my brother, Bill, was called up and had to go. My nephew, Fred was born during World War II.
A picture is here of my brother, and his two children, taken with him in his uniform. Also, a picture of the four of them on vacation in Florida after the children were well on their way to becoming adults. Unfortunately, I don't have a picture of Bill and Mae when they were just beginning their marriage.

Mae likes to tell me about when they were first married, they would come and get me, and take me out with them, and I was dressed in a little dress, and had on patent leather shoes, and socks and had curly blonde hair and what a feisty cute little girl I was. Shirley Temple was big at that time and I was told I looked just like her.

My brother, Bill, came home from the war, after serving several years in the Pacific Theater of Operations, and went to work at Alcoa for a great many years. Shortly after retirement from Alcoa, he was diagnosed with a brain tumor, from which he never recovered and lived only a short time after being diagnosed. That was in the year 1986, and more story there, but not for this time.

That is all from Blabbin' Grammy today. May God's grace and love rest on each of you.
Bye for now.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Early Beginnings




















I'd like to tell you a little more about my family during the time that I was about 5 and 6 years old. We moved from Knoxville to a place we called 'Possum Valley. It was located in the area known as Concord, TN. When we moved to 'Possum Valley, we moved into a log cabin belonging to my dad's mother. It was a two room cabin, with a loft. Some of my earliest memories come from those years.

The walls of the cabin were papered with old newspapers to keep the cold air out. There were 8 people who lived in that cabin, and sometimes more. (Believe it or not!)

My oldest brother, Bill, got married when we were living in that cabin, and brought his bride, my oldest sister-in-law, Mae, to live there. To say that it was crowded would be an understatement. But we had some wonderful times in that cabin. My mom loved to tell ghost stories to us when the wind would be blowing outside and we would gather around her near the fireplace and plead with her to "tell us another one." Although my brother, Bill, has been gone for 22 years, his wife, Mae, is still with us, and we often talk about those days in 'Possum Valley.

We younger children entertained ourselves by reading the comics that were plastered to the walls. My youngest brother, John, was still in diapers when we moved there.

There were two churches that we lived close to. We would go to Sunday School in one of them, and walk down the road to the other one for Sunday School because they began a little bit after the first one let out. (At least that is what my brother and sister told me). I remember some of the walking but not too much about the sunday school classes.

We walked to school which was called Boyd School and was a one-room schoolhouse, divided by a partition into two classrooms. A lady teacher taught the primer through 3rd grades, and the principal, who was a man, taught the other 5 classes. That was the school that my sister had to repeat 8th grade so that she could watch over me in the primer and first grade. The primer was taught the first half of the year, and then we were promoted to first grade for the second half of the year.

We didn't take our lunch to school, but my mom sent our lunch by my next to oldest brother, Ralph, in a lard bucket. It was always hot, usually beans and cornbread or something like that. My sister, Margaret, my brother, Hugh, and I were the ones that went to school down there. My brother and I talk about it sometimes and laugh about some of the things that happened.

One of the things I remember was one day when it was cold outside, some other kids and I were out by the well house behind the school, and I decided to imitate the principal who had a mustache. I pulled some of the strings out of the top of my tobaggan and had them scrunched up between my upper lip and my nose and was talking like I was him. He came around the corner of the school and said something like "what is going on around here?" Yep, I was being the center of attention and having a blast. But he scared the living daylights out of me for a few minutes. I am afraid I have always been an incorrigable little show-off, never being shy. Must be why I took up storytelling later. I absolutely love meeting people and making new friends.

Another thing I remember was being afraid to go outside to go to the outhouse (outdoor toilet for those of you who are uninitiated) because I could hear a dog barking. I was deathly afraid of dogs, and so I peed in my panties, and had to dry them on the stove that heated the schoolroom.
I learned to read while going to the little one -room school house in 'Possum Valley.

It was a wonderful thing to learn, and I have never regretted learning that skill. I must read 2 or 3 books a week even yet. I don't know what I would do if I ever got to where I could no longer read.

I am posting a school picture of myself and my brother, Hugh, so you can get an idea of what we looked like going to school. I remember when I had my picture made when I was in Primer. I was scared half to death, because it was a new experience for me.
I remember, too, getting my vaccination to go to school. Someone held my face in their bosom while I got my arm scratched with the needle. I think it must have been someone that was assisting the county nurse. I had it done at the school house.

Well, that is about it for today, since I don't want to wear out those who may read my blog. Each memory I write about dislodges other memories, and I just have a difficult time turning it off here. More later.
May each of you have a good evening and may God's grace and love rest on each of you. Farewell for today from Blabbin' Grammy!