Wednesday, April 14, 2010


Hey, Y'all,
I have been,as far back as I can remember, a reader and almost as far back as I can remember, a storyteller. It probably is not good storytelling technique to begin with the letter "I", if one is going to keep the interest of the audience, but who knows better what is going to be told than the "I" of the teller. Ha.Anyway...

When I first encountered the letters of the alphabet, we lived in a little three room log cabin in Possum Valley down in Concord, which is a part of Loudon County
. The cabin belonged to my Granny on my daddy's side, and she owned a larger house where she was living at the time. The cabin had three rooms, a loft, and a path (to the outhouse). The cabin also had a fireplace (but that is another story)where we warmed ourselves at night before going to sleep. The second time we lived there, I was only four or five years old. The walls were papered with newspaper to keep out the wind. Some of the papers were funny papers with all kinds of colors and we spent time looking at them.

There were also the cereal boxes that had letters on them. I remember "reading" the letters on the Post Toasties cereal box. Then when I was six, I began school and learned to read and write. As I stated the other day, the school was called Boyd School, and it no longer exists. There are other stories related to the school which I will save for another time.

When we moved back to Knoxville from Possum Valley, I was half way through second grade, and went to my first really big school (it even had an indoor toilet, wow!), I saw my first library. It was love at first sight! ALL those books. OH, my, I just couldn't believe it. I was in Hog Heaven! I had an unforgettable experience the first day I was at Brownlow School in the library. I was dying to go to the bathroom, and the librarian must have noticed my fidgeting, and she told me where the bathroom was and sent me. I have always been grateful for her kindness to a little girl who didn't know her way around. I learned that a little kindness goes a long way.

You would have to have been in my family (an observer, maybe) to know how much we all loved to read. My mom, dad, four brothers, sister, and myself were all readers. I have a niece who once remarked that she had never seen so many people at one time who loved to read.

Well, I guess it was just natural that I gravitated toward becoming a school librarian. I worked in the school library at New Market High School as a student, and then, 12 years after graduation from there, I went to Carson-Newman College, I earned 60 cents an hour working in the library at CNC. After I received my Bachelor's degree for teaching from Carson-Newman College, I was hired to teach and be a part time librarian.

During those 28 years that followed, I hardly ever refused a child to go to the bathroom, because I could remember my own experience and the kindness of that very special person. (This last statement is not really where I was going with this story when I began it, but it is important, I think). I have loved my life teaching and also being a librarian. They are called media specialists now or maybe communications specialists, but in my mind it is still librarian.

During my years as a school librarian, I honed my skills with words by having a storytelling day once a month, where I dressed as a "grandmother", told the children stories, and gave them each a little cookie at the end of the library period. I loved doing that, and since then have reminded me of it when I run into one of them who remembers me and says hello. I get lots of hugs from former students. Those mean a lot to me.

Well, that is about it for now. I have a lot to do today. The car needs to be serviced and I have an appointment for that as well as an appointment for getting Gramps into the assisted living place while I go to our grandson's wedding in Texas. He really doesn't want to go to Terrace Estates, and thinks he can stay here alone, but no deal. He just can't do so. I will be leaving here in a couple of weeks for Texas, and since he didn't want to make the trip (I know he thought he could just stay here), he will have to stay there for the two week period I am arranging today.

This is Blabbin' Grammy signing off for today. Thanks to all of you who check in on my blog and read it. Love the comments. They are like sunshine on a cloudy day, and like rain drops to a dry and thirsty ground. I just soak them up. Love to all of you. Bye for now. Gotta go.

BTW, my neighbor will be checking on Gramps while I am in Morristown this morning. Bye



Hi Ruby, yet another winner, I do so love to read your blogs, you pack so much into them,plus one can visualise what you're writing about.
Have a lovley day.

Nf1andprek-whisper said...

I love your memory about reading and learning and I can't believe your first school had an outhouse, wow I love the name Possum valley. I also am so jealous LOL that you were a librarian I have wanted to do that my entire life, I love books but it's so much school and I have a learning disability.

Lisa said...

I used to love story time in the library and remember her reading "The Boxcar Children" to us. Such warm memories. Librarians RULE! :)

Have a great day Ms. Ruby. I hope it gives you lots of sunshine and beautiful scenery!

Wanda said...

You're certainly a grea story teller. Sure all the kids really enjoyed you. I love books too. It's funny how the smallest gesture of kindness can leave such an impressionable remark on lives. Blessings to you & Gramps

Beth said...

I do love your stories! Thank you for your very sweet and supportive comments on my recent posts! Drops of rain on parched ground seems an apt description of how positive words feel after baring pieces of my soul! :)

arlee bird said...

Those are some great stories, Ruby. It's funny that once again today we've posted on a similar topic (libraries), but in totally different ways. I guess if twenty of us posted about libraries we'd get twenty different takes on the topic. Enjoyed reliving those memories.
Blogging From A to Z April Challenge

Wendy aka Quillfeather. said...

Another precious snippet of your past.

A delight. As always :)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

No wonder you are a book lover!

Trudy said...

LOVED reading about your time as a librarian and your warm memories of the very special. We share a love for literature and I have often thought I should have become a librarian for that reason. How fun that your whole family shared that love!

God bless you Ruby, I am so glad I have found you through this are just an absolute peach my dear!

Debra Harris-Johnson said...

Hi Ruby, I wanted to check on you and the Mr. I guess most writer's harbors a secret desire to be a librarian. I know I did and I envy you that.

WhisperingWriter said...

You know, I've always wanted to be a librarian. I love books so I imagine I'd love it.

Patricia Stoltey said...

Ruby, I can't get enough of your stories. Although I never lived in a place with a name as colorful as Possum Valley, I do remember how much I loved books when I was a kid and how hard I'd work to get my farm chores done so I could go read. When I finally realized I would never be able to read all the books in the world, I was devastated.

SonshineMusic i.e. Rebecca T. said...

Great post. I love books and libraries - I considered becoming a librarian for a while, but decided to go for English professor. I think I may be crazy.

I love reading your posts! Keep them coming :)

Linda said...

You are a wonderful story teller. I also love libraries and visiting different ones with their own special story.