Monday, November 26, 2012


A more recent picture. 

Memorial day in the late 30’s and early 40’s was a day of real celebration. Anyway, it was if you lived in the country in Oklahoma. 
The country church we attended was located in the cemetery, called Bethel. I’m not sure which came first, the church or the cemetery.  The little brown shack was located behind the church. From there were the many graves, also by the side of the driveway. One side of the church was just a meadow, no graves were there at that time. There were a few cedar trees  along the driveway going into the church grounds. 
Preparing for memorial day started a day or so before, and it meant picking as many flowers as you had and putting them into buckets of water. Paper flowers made with crepe paper was another decoration that many created for the occasion. A gallon or two of lemonade and iced tea would be prepared and kept in a tub of ice. Ice came in blocks and if you wanted it crushed, you placed the block in a gunny sack and beat the heck out of it with whatever they used. I don't remember the details. 
It was an all day affair, because you met all the family members and neighbors. The kids ran around, and had a great time playing in the driveway. You were not allowed to run in the cemetery because stepping on a grave was a grave no-no. Adults milled around and visited all the graves of people they had known and much visiting and laughing and just catching up on each others lives. It would last most of the day and enjoyed by all. 
The church is no longer in the cemetery, and the part that was empty has now been filled. I have family buried there, my brothers, parents, grandparents, uncles. 
This is something I should have posted on Memorial day, but I’m always at least a day late. 
When I was a kid it was always referred to as Decoration day. Anyway, my mother called it that. She may have been the only one. 
My family started a family tradition several years ago. It was a family reunion that was celebrated in May. There were always strawberries galore, and somehow the special day was dubbed, Strawberry Day. I am not sure who named it, maybe someone in the family knows. It was one gigantic picnic in someone’s yard. The family grew larger and Strawberry Day grew larger. I think the day first started as a birthday party, because Dad and Ray (a son) shared the same birthday which was May 26th. Finally a grandson was born on Strawberry day. That made the day even more special.  There were other grand kids that came close to being born on the special day. When a baby was due in May, we all crossed our fingers, hoping it would be born on Strawberry day. The family has let Strawberry day slip away since our parents and a couple older siblings have passed away. It was nice while it lasted. I was only able to attend one Strawberry Day because I lived so far away. I think it was the last one they had. I remember it was so cold that day, we ended up in the house. It was at Gene and Glenda’s that year and the house was bulging at the seams. 

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Back On The Farm

The following story is a rerun from years ago. 

I recall an incident that happened back on the farm where I grew up. Grandpa lived with us since Grandma had passed on. Our Daddy was the preacher of the little country church. It was a very devout household and we learned very early on that there was a code of ethics that you lived up to or else. Bad words were on the top of that list. No bad words. Us kids soon learned to follow that rule, but Grandpa just didn't seem to get the message. I don't think he really gave a gosh darn about the rule because he used them all the time. One time he hooked up a team of horses to a wagon and went to a field. I don’t remember what he was doing, but it doesn't matter. When he started back to the barn the horses got spooked over something and had a run-away, they took off like flying rockets over ruts and brambles and kicking up clouds of dust a mile high, and the wagon looked like an air born missile. Some of us kids were outside and saw them coming in our direction. We were worried that Grandpa had been thrown out and may be hurt bad because we couldn't see him in the wagon. We didn't know how we were going to get the horses stopped. We thought they might even run over us. Well, not to worry, horses are smart because when they saw the house they came to a screeching halt almost at our back door. I don’t know for sure how horses think, but I think they must have thought they were safe now that they were in their own back yard, or maybe they thought the fly that had been chasing them, was no longer a threat. We've got to go find Grandpa! About the time we were talking about finding Grandpa, he managed to pull himself up and was standing in the bed of the wagon. This is the point when he began to badmouth the horses with some more of those forbidden bad words. There were some words that our tender young ears had never heard before, he finally ended it with, "I see we finally got here." Maybe you would need to be there to get the humor of it, but we thought that was about the funniest line we had ever heard so we began to snicker and chuckle a little. At the same time Grandpa climbed out of the wagon and staggered around in front of the horses and begin shouting those same words to the horses again, in case they had not heard him the first time. He had raised his voice to a full roar. By now we had collapsed into a full-blown laugh seizure. We were laughing so hard we couldn't stand up. I guess Grandpa must have noticed this because, all at once, he turned his verbal abuse from the horses to us. Grandpa sure knew how to take the humor out of something because we snapped to attention and things began to simmer down and it was back to normal. Grandpa was just having a bad day. 

Monday, November 12, 2012

This Wild Weird World

This is kind of a twightlight zonie type of thing, but it actually happened.
I do not believe an inanimate object can vanish into thin air, such nonsense just cannot happen. One day several weeks ago when I moved out of my recliner to retire to the bedroom, I cleared off the stand by my chair. My corner in the living room is my castle, I always straighten up the end table, so I moved the junk mail to the trash can and other items went into the proper place, The only things left on the stand was the remote control, a coaster, and the laptop.  The next morning I was going to set my coffee on the coaster, and the coaster was gone, vanished, vamoosed, disappeared, left, moved out, departed. I was baffled, puzzled, perplexed, mystified, and befuddled. I searched everywhere, under the stand, under the chairs and cushions, in the waste  basket. I finally gave up.
One day I took a flash drive out of the laptop, and the last I recall of it, it was in my hand. It has also joined the departed coaster. I gave up.
Saturday, I finished knitting something, and put the knitting needles on a hassock that is nearby and later I wanted to start another project and I reached for the needles, and there was only one needle. At first I thought it had just rolled off on the floor and I get up to retrieve it, and it was not on the floor, or under anything. I had not been anywhere, and I live alone. Luckily I had another set of needles that size, but shorter. They work for what I am making.
Later that day I remembered my son had asked for a picture of an old car he had when young, so I decided to look for it.  The box of pictures was in the corner in the spare bedroom back under a table and I have not looked in that box of pictures for months and maybe a year. While searching for the picture, and toward the bottom of the box, was the missing coaster. I kid you not! The goose bumps went up my spine. There are four coasters in that set, and I had accounted for the other three. It is the one that was missing.
The knitting needle and flash drive are still in hiding.
I Googled to see if such things happen to others, and was amazed with the stories about it. 

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Just Do It

When you have that inclination that you should call an old friend or relative, just do it.
I have been thinking of an old friend for a couple weeks and telling myself I should call and see how she is, but I always thought of it when I was in front of the sink or crawling into bed, and I just kept forgetting when it was convenient. Today I went shopping at Fred Meyers and there was my friends, Marion and Abe. We had both just checked out. No wonder I had been thinking of her, she has had a lot of bad things happening. Her brother just passed away yesterday with cancer, her husband, Abe had just spent a week in the hospital taking chemo treatments and radiation. Her 28 year old granddaughter has cancer, and it is not in remission. I think she could have used a shoulder to cry on. We have known each other for years. We worked in an office elbow to elbow and then the desk were moved and it was back to back and finally the desks were moved again and it was face to face. We got along perfectly, never any disagreements. She was a jewel to work with. Abe is still funny and can always make me laugh.
I really believe there is something to it, when you keep thinking of someone like that, you should get in touch. We plan to get together for coffee soon.

Abe and Marion