Saturday, April 16, 2011

New Adventures, New Beginnings and New Challenges

Hey, Y'all,
Well, today I am talking about New Stuff...specifically, New Adventures, New Beginnings and New Challenges, kind of keeping with our abc theme.

Thinking about coming from Tennessee to Texas kind of reminded me of my mom's family coming from Tennessee to Texas to make a new beginning back in 1908, a little more than a hundred years ago. She was only seven years old at the time, and her dad was looking for work. His brother had written to her dad telling him there was work to be had out here, so the whole family and extended family that was in Tennessee got together and had a picture made.

My mom is the one seated on the right of the picture, and her mom is the woman seated on the left with my Aunt Edith on her lap. There are five other children of hers and Grandpa's in the picture. They came out here to Lorena, Texas by train to work on the Westbrook's Ranch. My grandpa worked as a hand on the ranch, my grandma worked as a cook in the ranchhouse, and my mom and her siblings worked out in the fields, hoeing and picking cotton, and chopping out corn.

Mom was always full of ideas, and one day she got the idea that if they wanted to get out of work, they should rub poison ivy (she and her brothers, Arthur and Gene,) over their face and then they would break out and not have to chop out the corn. Ya' gotta remember, folks, she was only seven or eight and had no idea what a misery that could bring on. Well, her two brothers broke out in poison really bad, but it didn't affect her, so she wound up with having to do hers and their work. Anyway, that was one little sad adventure she regretted. Ha.

They had the challenge of adapting to a new area, just as I have had over the past few months. The man in the upper left of the picture is my grandpa, William Gaston Black, and standing next to him is my aunt that I wrote about the other day, the one we called "Ainty" or Aint Emmaline. We never pronounced Aunt as Ahnt, like a lot of people do. We are from Tennessee, you all. Ainty was the one who went to nurse people back to health, and one side of her mouth was twisted like she had something wrong with it. She also had a little finger on one hand that she could wiggle like it wasn't fastened on good or something.

Oh, my! There are all kinds of stories in my family's background that are simply fascinating. Anyway, they came to Texas when my mom was seven, and her dad died within two years of their coming here. They had a child who was born in Texas and died before Grandpa did. The child was responsible for my Grandpa becoming a believer in the Lord. It is told that when the little boy, Franklin, was dying, he looked up and pointed to heaven, and said, "Right there" as though he could see Jesus and heaven, then died. Mom told how Grandpa became a believer right then and there. She said that Ainty shouted and said, "Hallelujah" because Ainty had been praying for him to believe. 

It was not very long before Grandpa became ill from pneumonia, from getting wet while working in the rain when he had the measles, and passed away. (Another story here, but will save it for later.) The family then had to pack up and move back to Tennessee, because without Grandpa, they could not stay on the ranch. They returned to Tennessee exactly a hundred years ago. 

I am sure that not in their wildest dreams did they ever consider what the world would be like a hundred years from then. 

This is Blabbin' Grammy signing off for today. Much love to each of you, my friends and family. Bye for now. More later.

Thinking about and writing about all this that happened to them makes me realize that the challenges I have had to face are next to nothing, because of all the help and encouragement I have had from family and so many new friends and those I already had. God is good, isn't He? He brought them through rough times, and He is bringing me through as well. 

ADDENDUM: Believe it or not, I was going to write about my new adventures, beginnings and challenges, then after I started thinking, my whole ideas kind of went in a different direction...and I wound up not writing about my adventures, new beginnings and new challenges. Go figure! I'll save that for another day. Ha. 


welcome to my world of poetry said...

Loved your post today Ruby, yes there are many challenges to make in life and with God there is always someone here in Blogsphere should you need somone to write to.

Enjoy your week-end,

Grammy said...

Hi, Yvonne, Thanks, that is all so true. Thank you for being such a faithful supporter. Love, Ruby

Teresa said...

GREAT stories, Mom. Some of them I had never heard before. I really enjoyed reading them.

Serbian Mink said...

interesting reading re: your post the other day:

Karen Walker said...

So interesting to hear these kinds of stories. I'm glad you allowed yourself to get diverted.

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

Sometimes, the very best stories come from us simply following wherever our minds wants us to go. You're making your memories come alive for your readers, and more importantly, for your family. That's a priceless gift.

Penned Pebbles said...

I could sit and listen to these kind of stories all day long, and you tell them so well. :-) Blessings!

Arlee Bird said...

Hope you've recorded all these stories somewhere. If not I think you might need to write a book for, if nothing else, family legacy. I'm sure the challenges we face in our age are much easier than what our ancestors faced, but they are challenges all the same and just different. Great post for 'N'.

Tossing It Out

Margaret Hall said...

I cannot imagine the 'wealth of information' that lies in that beautiful mind of yours, Grammy. Each and every visit here brings us closer to your thoughts and it is such a comfortable and endearing place to visit..Indeed, your new beginnings and new challenges will be greatly anticipated...Loved your post, see you for "O"...

Empty Nest Insider said...

Thanks for the wonderful stories! How I wish that my grandparents kept a journal of all the events in their lives. You are an inspiration to us all. Julie

TnBassPkr said...

I'm glad you shared some of our family history,,I remember grandma telling some of these stories,,and now I have a copy of a photograph of all of them,,,man, what a treasure..

Ella said...

Thanks for sharing; I love hearing about the past and how people functioned. They worked so hard back then. Wonderful picture, I look forward to more stories~xXx