And It’s Getting Even Colder

But before we get to that, the good news.  Next week I start therapy on my shoulder!  I’m doing a happy dance in my brain, since my legs still don’t work all that well, and yes, I know it will hurt, but that will be a good kind of hurt.  I’ll be back in the kitchen, cooking again in two months.  My personal resolution.  Maybe a bit premature, but I’ll do it!!!!

family-268 These are my two great grandsons, Eli and Camden.  And they are standing out in the snow, the only photo I have in my library that has snow in it.  We have some snow in the forecast, but I received an email from my Citizens Emergency Relief Team (CERT) trainer today that we are going to have a horrible, humongous cold wave starting next week, with the temps dipping below zero.  So if you are in the Owensboro, KY area, be prepared.  Dress in layers, have emergency equipment on hand, both at home and in your car if you have to get out.  If you don’t have to get out, Please STAY AT HOME, and bundle up.  Have an ample supply of finger foods on hand in case of power outage, don’t turn your heat up too high so you can conserve electricity, dress in layers, and please take care of your pets.  They get cold too.  There is no word about ice or snow, just the extreme cold, and I know a lot of you live in colder areas, but darn it, this is supposed to be the South.  Upper south, but still….

Now for the personal train wrecks.  Believe me, as long as I’m breathing, there will be train wrecks.  I got this really nice cushion for my power chair, since my bum is getting a bit sore from sitting all the time, and today managed to spill my Dr. Pepper on it.  And on my phone, which was on the cushion next to the Dr. Pepper.  A new twist on sticky keys I think.  So, to keep from getting the seat of my jeans wet (I hope) I have a thick towel covering the cushion.  Also, a large wet spot on the leg of my jeans.  If there’s a way to destroy it, I’ll find it.

I’ve managed to drag a second quilt off my bed by getting it caught in my chair.  This takes a special talent.  And yesterday I pulled a panel off the door of the elevator.  Well, I never claimed to be a good driver.  And besides, the door shouldn’t have tried to close on me so fast.  It got me to my floor though, and for the first time in months it didn’t make that horrible sound when the door opened.  Guess I showed it who’s boss, huh?

family-521 Astroid kissing Noah Amy Just decided to show a few of my favorite photos before I sign off.  On the left are Laurie, Anika, Andrew and Ethan, In the middle is Noah with his Grand Champion steer Asteroid, and on the right is my beautiful niece Amy, wearing a necklace I made for her.  We raise beautiful kids in my family.


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Baby, It’s Cold Out There

According to the weather bug on my computer, the temp is 25 degrees.  The sound of the wind whistling around the building makes it feel more like 25 below.  And the place is covered with ice — both the white kind, and the other, black ice that you don’t really see until you slip and fall on it.  This gal is staying inside and taking no chances, even if I could actually walk.  As for trying to drive my power chair, I have a feeling I would be skidding all over town in it without even trying.

Old wagon on country road, 2000 I took this photo several years ago, just because it caught my fancy.  I love things like this, old wagons, old houses, old barns.  I had been at a patient’s house when I worked for Hospice, and this old wagon had caught my eye the first time I drove out there, but I didn’t have my camera with me at the time.  That was before I started carrying the camera with me all the time, just for moments like this.  It was a winding country road, and with my sense of direction, I managed to get lost every time I went out there.  Of course, I can get lost in a closet with the door open, so that came as no surprise to me.  Fortunately, Hospice gave us directions and phone numbers, so I could check the directions, turn around and back track each day when I over shot the driveway, and eventually find the right house.  But this old wagon was on that road, so one day when I remembered to take the camera with me, I snapped the photo on the way back.  That was before I took the wrong turn and ended up on the wrong road, but at least I knew where I was then and finally made it to the next patient.

100_2569 My poor sweet potato leaves passed away a few days ago.  One day they were half way to the ceiling, looking healthy and robust, and the next day they were drooping over the jar and turning brown.  The mint is still thriving and the aloe, but both desperately need re-potting in ginormous buckets.   I guess I’ll have to do more online shopping for the pots and potting soil, which hopefully can be found in January.  I have some plastic buckets if they should become necessary, but don’t think I want to take a pick axe out to try to obtain some dirt anytime soon.

I’ve been cuddling under my half finished afghan 100_2571 while working on another one that isn’t so heavy at the time.  It really bugs me that I can only do a few stitches at a time, but then, I’ve lost the crochet hook I was using, so I’ve had to start a third one using a different size hook.  I’m sure my chair ate the other hook, and when I am able to life the chair up and look under it I’ll find the hook and probably a lot of other things that have been lost over the years.  Losing things and getting lost are two of my things.  If I turn one corner I’m completely lost, and if I put something down for a few minutes it disappears.  I have a game I play called “find the remote”.  My TV has been going for several days and nights because I can’t remember where I put the remote, no doubt in a place where I wouldn’t lose it.  That’s a dangerous thing to do here, because as soon as I put it down, it’s gone.  Don’t know why, don’t know how.  I think things grow feet and they run away from home.  They are probably all parading down Frederica street on their short little legs right now.


Happy (?) New Year

Here’s hoping this year will be so much better than last one.  At least the last month of last one.  I really want to get back in my kitchen and cook something.  I know I can’t smell anything, but still I can remember the smells of the things I usually cook, and really miss that pot of beans and the Mexican cornbread that always go with it.  Mmmm, what more can a person ask for than beans and cornbread on a cold, winter day?

I have a new award, sorta.  Since a picture is worth a thousand words, here it is. doncharisma-org-not-on-freshly-pressed-award-4-300x300 doncharisma-org-not-on-freshly-pressed-award-3-300x300I haven’t decided which one to put in my gallery yet, but I think it will be the one with the picture of the presenter, Don Charisma.  Of course, the other one shows up better, but I’ll decide before my next post.  Don is really a great guy, currently living in Thailand, who is now doing great things with stitching photos together to make up really large, breathtaking scenery.  He’s funny, intelligent, and altogether a great guy who created my angel logo for me.  My knight in mostly shining armor.  You really should check out his blog,  At least I think that’s it.  If not, so sorry Don.  Sinus headache, remember?

Since I can’t go shopping at this time, I have started online shopping at Amazon.  I think I went a bit overboard on a few things there, but since you don’t actually see the product, just a description, you don’t know until it arrives. 004 Just a few days ago I got a call from the office telling me I had a large package downstairs.  Large?  It was about the size of a coffin.  It is still taking up half my living room.  As you can see, I ordered paper towels, also 007 well, that’s more like a photo of the box with the towels at the top.  So, here’s another one.005 A dozen packages of paper plates, and a huge bag of paper bowls.  Since I can’t wash dishes at the moment, I use a lot of paper products.  And last, 006 a dozen boxes of Kleenex, although I only pulled one out because I only needed one opened at the time.  Fortunately there was no shipping fee, since the order was more than $50.  The trash bags and Windex are still to come, and naturally they are the items I needed the most.  Except for the Kleenex, since I somehow caught a head cold without ever leaving the building.  How?  Your guess is as good as mine.  I think if there is half of an allergen floating around the hemisphere it makes it to my nose and takes up residence there.

I’ve pretty much slept thru the past few days.  It’s just too comfortable under the covers to move lately, and I have a lot of lost sleep to make up.  Throw a couple of pain pills a day into the mix, and I’m snoring like, well, a lumberjack?  Or maybe more like Max did.  For such a tiny dog he could beat my dad when it came to snoring.

Well, back to the sinus meds.  Doctor appointment on Friday for results of CAT scan.  To tell the truth, I’m not sure I really want to know.


I Found It

Scan-4YES!!!!  This is the scanned picture Anika drew of Max!  I’m so excited and so up in the air about this.  Isn’t that girl an undiscovered talented artist?  And gorgeous to That’s Anika on the left of an Andrew sandwich, with Laurie, Anika’s twin brother, and Ethan in the back.  They are all a couple of years older now, but really a group of good looking kids.  Now I’m wondering which one is going to the UK vs Louisville game with their dad tonight.

Bill HAS to attend the games, because of his job at UK.  Doesn’t that make you want to cry him a river?  My older brother, Tony, used to have to do that job, and after a few years of it I think he got tired of going, but Bill takes one of the kids with him each time he has to go to a game.  We asked him Thursday which one was going with him today and he didn’t really answer.  Just said whoever was the best for the rest of the week.  Don and Mike both started grinning and told him he would have to pretend they were his kids for one of two of the games then, because they were always better than the kids.  I could add a comment or ten on that subject here, but I’ll save that for future blackmail material.  Ummm, I mean for another post.

Bill and Ethan at Final Four, 2012 This is Bill and Ethan last year at the Final Four in New Orleans, where UK won the championship.  I don’t really follow any sport, but I will admit my blood runs UK blue.  I also have several UK shirts.  All for survival of course.  One brother, two kids, a granddaughter, a grandson, all either still in, working for, or in some way screaming GO CATS, so I would be found guilty of high treason if I didn’t at least support the game.  We’re talking basketball here folks, not football.  I don’t think anyone in the extended family would argue that they are not good at football.

I really wish I had remembered to take my camera with me to my party, because Ethan now has a bush growing on his face.  It almost matches his Uncle Mike’s bushy face, except Mike is beginning to (gulp) get a bit gray.  And he’s my baby.  And only 11 1/4 years old, due to his birthday being on Feb. 29.  That wouldn’t be so bad except that he acts like an 11 year old kid.  Janette and I decided on duct tape instead of a plaster cast for him, and we decided to duct tape Noah to him after some of the shenanigans on Thursday.  I think duct tape across Mike’s face would be even better, because when he pulls it off, we might get to see what he looks like for the first time in years.

I’m not sure what this post is supposed to be about tonight.  I was just really so thrilled to find my scanned photos, that now I know where to look for more of them when I scan them in, and WordPress started to crunch the photo but changed it’s mind and let it in.  Must be my lucky day.

I also found someone willing to go to the grocery for me today, so I now have some frozen TV dinners, which are a welcome switch from the soups I’ve been eating.  The first one I ate even had some beautiful, green peas that stayed crunchy when they were warmed up.  What more could I ask for.  The pain level is dropping, so my shoulder is probably healing on it’s own, I ate some crunchy peas, visited with friends downstairs, got a few groceries….I even asked Steve to bring me a couple of the microwavable potatoes so I can have baked potatoes with sour cream and shredded cheese on them.  Didn’t think about getting some broccoli to put on top, but then I don’t think I could hold the knife yet.  But, ya never know.


Mostly Photos From The Past

Leo &Betty Ann's house Leo and Betty Ann’s home as I remember it.

tonyangela Tony and me when we lived on Parrish Court in Owensboro.   We had real snow way back then.

Leo's kids, minus Doris Doug, Pat, Phil, Mark and Janet Blandford.  They lived down the drive behind us.  Sorry Doris, you weren’t born yet.  Doug and Ray were usually partners in crime.

Mark and philMark & Phil Mark and Sandy Mark & Sandy Mark and Pat. Mark & Pat Mark and Doug Mark and Doug (scowling) as they are today.

Leo Leo w. Doug and Pat Leo, Doug & Pat Leo and PatLeo and who? Leo Blandford 2 Doug’s son Leo, with wife Sara and twins.

Damien & HildaDamien & Hilda, wedding picture, w. Grandmother & Papa on left, and Mom & Pop Goetz on right.

Vird Vird and Johnnie, with Sheila, Sarah, Sharon and Kathy.  Krista yet to be born.

youngcousins Young cousins.  The tall one has to be Don, and on his left is Shirley, Carol is the blond in front, I think Patty is second from right, so probably Barbara on right, completely lost after that.

TonyTroublemaker Tony.  DSC01964_edited-1 Big Brother Tony with Uncle Vird.  Just goes to show what a difference a few years will do for troublemakers.

shirley and crewThis one is called “Shirley and crew”.  Shirley is in the middle of the back row, Betty is on the left of back row, not too sure about the rest.

Tony Barbara Diane Patty Left to right, Tony, Barbara, Diane and Patty.  Tony and Diane were making their first Communion, Barbara was a flower girl, and Patty was an angel. (still is).

HubertHelenHubert and Helen’s wedding picture.  Patty Hubert Barbara Patty, Hubert, Barbara

Patty Barbara Patty & Barbara  Patty Michael Barbara Patty, Michael, Barbara Paul Michael Ronald Paul, Michael, Ronald Barbara Barbara today.

JoeMaudeMaude and Joe, wedding.  jerrydamienmaryalene Jerry, Damien, Mary, AleeneMaude Donnie Joe In Detroit.  Jerry Julia Nick Jerry, Julia and Nick in 2000.

Donnie Jerry Patty Donnie, Jerry, Patty when they lived in Detroit.

cousins1 1952 family reunion at Vird’s house on Hwy. 81.

Eeanor Eleanor. Eleanor Swanson Later photo of Eleanor.Shelia and Joe 10-21-12 Sheila and JoeLeslie & Sarah Leslie Ann & Sarah.  I don’t have photos of Karen, John, and Tim (?)  You need to come home so I’ll remember your names right.

B0000166 My family, Bernard (dad) Tony, Mary (mom) Steve, Angie, Sylvia, Larry, Ray.  Elaine wasn’t born yet.  Sorry sis.BabyElaineElaine stuffing her face on birthday .Mary's Family Most of us in 2ooo.

Satyr walking Steve Satyr walking Steve in Tulsa. Larry and Marcia 9-11Larry and Marcia near Atlanta. Mark and Amy Christmas  Young Amy and Mark      Mark and Sarah wedding pic Mark and Sarah, wedding day.  New Amy.Amy beautiful niece., .  Grammy & kidz Me, with Anika, Laurie, Ethan, and Andrew, in Frankfort, KY  Mike and Janette Mike and Janette (Mike’s my baby, a Leap Year baby, so now 11 years old)Alan, 2012 Alan, oldest grandson. Faleasha5 Faleasha, beautiful granddaughter taken during her trip to Barcelona Noah with drink Noah, being Noah.  .Gina, Ethan Bill 2013 GO CATS!!! family-211 Don, with his grandson, Camden. family-268 Brothers, Eli and Camden. Elaine making burgoo Elaine, making burgoo at her home near Monument, CO.  And she didn’t even send me some. The Hartle family, minus Jon, 2013 The Hartle family, minus Jon, who is off to college.  Matt is married to Denise, and her sister is in the photo with them.  I’ve posted photos of Ray many times, and that leaves Sylvia and Erin, who refuse to have their pictures taken.



This series is dedicated to my wonderful Grandmother, and all the fantastic people who have come after her.  I love you all, and don’t you think it’s time for another reunion?





Train Wrecks 2000

cousins are This will be the last entry about the stories from the 2000 cookbook.  Mark has suggested, and I totally agree, that it would be a great idea to start planning another reunion.  And maybe even another cookbook with new memories from the newer generation.  Plus, I would love to meet some of the cousins we have who are related from Papa’s side of the family.  I know one of them — Vicky Connor.  So if any Blandfords in the West Louisville area are related to her, you are related to the rest of us also.  I’m going to start putting some random photos on here tonight, because I’m running out of the older ones that have been destroyed over the many years since the 1920’s to the ’40’s.  So look closely, some of you could find yourselves going international tonight.

Vird Vird’s family.  Marie Blandford  Ward recalls:  Bernard (Elzie) used to walk in his sleep when he was younger.  One of the houses the family lived in had upstairs and downstairs porches.  One of the upstairs porches had a banister, one didn’t.  Off the porch without a banister was a little storage room. It was here that Mother kept her laundry until it was time to wash it.  One night when Bernard was around 13, he got up in his sleep.  Without knowing it, he walked onto the upstairs porch without a banister, and into the storage room.   There he put on a pair of Joe’s pants and went back to bed.  He had no idea what he had done until the next morning when he woke up in bed wearing Joe’s dirty pants!JoeMaude Joe and Maude’s wedding picture.  Can’t find one of Elzie (aka: Bernard)

Leo's familyI was hoping this photo would be larger, but Doug is in there–the oldest.  Doug Blandford recalls:  Daddy was a very opinionated about certain things.  For example, he felt very strongly that Muhammad Ali was a no-good draft dodger, regardless of how good a boxer he was.  Once Daddy woke up in the middle of a dream in which he was pummeling Ali.  He must have been flailing away (shadow boxing) when he connected with Ali’s jaw, but in actuality it was the bedroom wall he connected with!

armyleo My brothers and I learned to love and play the game of baseball from Daddy.  He would take us out to the field and throw and catch and hit flies until we all dropped.  But Daddy couldn’t throw very far or for very long at a time because he says he hurt his shoulder while playing ball in the Army, but he never talked about the war (WWII) and his participation in it.  Daddy was a machine-gunner in the infantry and marched with his unit across Germany and saw a lot of action.  But that is all I know about his experience there because he wouldn’t talk about the war, ever.  I kind of suspect that he really had a bad shoulder because of the constant recoil of the gun, but he led us to believe he threw his shoulder out playing ball.  Either way, I wish Daddy was still here so that I could tell him how proud I was of him.

Note to Doug:  the story I heard all my life was that your Dad was the only survivor of two different units.  By the time he was re-assigned to the third unit they had marched on Berlin, and taken the city, so most of his unit survived that time.  Mom told me this when I was a teenager, and I was asking why your Dad wasn’t a cook also, since he had the great recipe for the barbecue sauce.  Since the sauce recipe came courtesy of your Mom’s side of the family, and your Dad didn’t cook yet, he was assigned to the gunnery unit.  A real hero, among all the rest of heroes from that era.  I hope that helps after all these years.

Leo, Doug & PatAren’t you guys cute?  Fr. Ray Goetz recalls:  Uncle Leo had the best line of all.  Some of them can even be printed.  I believe it was Tony that he called a “Big long slim slick sycamore sapling.”  You might need to check the accuracy though. (Don’t have to, I remember it well).  When something was just too astonishing for words he would exclaim “well garden seed!”  We had a beautiful mild cow named Beautina, but we called her “Beauty” for short.  Because she had a pair of magnificent horns, Leo called her “Double Ugly”.  He was never very fond of her I think.

Those are all the stories in the book.  There are a lot more I can only half remember from so many years ago.  Tomorrow I will post the photos I have salvaged, so you can see the “way back whens” and some of the more modern ones.  Oh, how I love my family.



More Blandford Train Wrecks

Thanksgiving dinner 2002 Thanksgiving at Mom’s house a few years ago.  L to R:  Ray, Tony, Angie, Marie, Hayman, Mom, Marcia, Mark Goetz.  And isn’t that a great looking table!

Mary Blandford Goetz recalls:  I do remember my maternal grandmother, who died in 1933, and the only thing I remember about my maternal grandfather was that when I was only 1 year old I was standing too close to an open grate and my dress caught on fire.  Grandpa was sitting close by and he grabbed me and put out the blaze.  I was not burned, thanks to him.  I just remember that he had a mustache and a long beard.  He died in May of that year, 1921.  I never knew my paternal grandparents.  My grandmother died in 1888 and my grandfather remarried and moved to Mayfield.  We don’t know when he died, but I know it was long before I was born.  I know he was a farmer, and his father before him also farmed.  In fact, one of Papa’s uncles, Aquila Blandford, donated the land that Mount St.. Joseph is build on to the Ursuline Sisters.  Papa’s dad, J.R.II, donated land for the Catholic Cemetery in Mayfield, KY.

I can remember mom telling me about Uncle Aquila donating that land to the Mount most of my life.  I guess that’s why most of my life has been tied up with the Mount’s history.

armyleovirdjohn Leo, Vird, John R.IV.

Mary Blandford Goetz:  John R., Vird and Leo were the only boys to be drafted into the Army in the early ’40’s.  Both John and Vird were cooks.  Leo was in the infantry.  All three served in Europe during the entire siege.  John had cooked at home before going into the army, but I guess Vird learned while there.

Marie Blandford Ward recalls:  We went to Mass on Sundays in shifts — too many for one car load.  While the first shift of boys were at church someone from the second shift would sew their pants legs together.  Leo had Sister Edward for a teacher.  She lived with Sister Eulalia (our aunt) and was like family.  She was always teasing Leo about his curly hair.  One time he wrapped up a real pig tail and gave it to her.  One summer afternoon we wanted to make either ice cream or fudge.  The boys were working on the farm, so Mary and Eleanor said they would milk the cow.  They started out with Mary carrying the bucket and Eleanor carrying a stick, so there was no way a cow was going to let them come near. (Mary has said they chased the cow all around the pasture without any luck and that night it wouldn’t even give any milk!)

Another story I heard mom talk about quite often while I was growing up.  To this day she is afraid of being around cows, so I’ve often wondered if they chased the cow or the cow chased them.

mariejoeeleanorMarie, Joe and Eleanor, on lake front in MI.

Mary Blandford Goetz recalls:  As for Marie, the only thing I can think of that wouldn’t embarrass her too much is that she was so short she could easily run right under the dining room table and be out of sight in a flash.  We used to call her “Wee Wee” instead of Marie.  Since she was so small, the boys often carried her to and from the bus.   It was about a two mile walk to the bus stop, which was long for her.  And the boys found it easier to carry her than to walk slow at her pace.

Gina as freshmanRegina Wink Swinford:   Uncle Vird told Aunt Marie who told me that when Uncle John was growing up there was a particular rooster who had it in for him.  I asked his daughter, Mary, about it.  She asked Uncle John.  He said he remembered the rooster, but it was mean to all of them.  One day he got it back though.  When the rooster attacked Uncle John once while he was on his way out to the barn, John took the pail he had and whacked the rooster clear down the driveway.  That was the last time the rooster bothered any of them.

Oh, the joys of growing up in the country.  I loved it myself, and I’m pretty sure my kids did also.  And even though she calls herself Regina now, she’ll always be Gina to me.  See you tomorrow.


Blandford Reunion 2000 Revisited Part 3

cousins areSo here we go again, and I’m not sure who all will be featured tonight.  I do know Ray will lead off.  He seems to have the loudest voice in the family, and tells some of the best stories.  Of course, part of that came from Dad’s side of the family also.  I’ve never been sure where I fit in because I’m the one that always leaves the openings for the rest of them, and I seem to walk into the traps every time.

B0000166The little short guy in the front is Ray.  He was so cute way back then.  I wonder what happened.

Fr. Ray Goetz recalls:  I guess all the boys in the family went hunting with Papa at least once (and for a reason I will now share, ONLY once).  He carried his old shotgun with the hammer back and his thumb over the trigger.  He walked very fast, more like stumbling forward.  Best of all, he wouldn’t let you walk in front or to the side.  I remember being scared to death watching that barrel pointing at me every time he took another step.  That just might be why I never enjoyed going hunting.  He would get after me for making too much noise, and then forget himself and whistle as we went through the woods.  I also remember helping him shell corn for the chickens.   He had an old Sheller in the barn and I loved putting an ear of corn in and turning that crank!

elders1 Not sure, but I think, back row are Ambrose, Coleman, Joe, front row, l. to r. Eleanor, Leo, Damien (?), Hubert (?), Vird, Mary, and George (?). As my Uncle Hayman said at one time, it seems only the oldest boys and the oldest daughter had shoes, the rest were barefoot.

Mary Blandford Goetz recalls:  On Sundays Mother would try to have a really good dinner.  We had fried chicken in the springtime when the chicks were the right size.  They tried to get the baby chicks at the time when they would be the right size for our first fried chicken dinner to be on Easter Sunday.  With the chicken we would have mashed potatoes, gravy, peas and banana salad.  What a treat!!!  I guess Mother’s trademark dish was her famous fried chicken.  She had a deep 12 x 15 inch pan in which she melted lard to a depth of about 2 inches.  She fried about 5 or 6 chickens at a time, by dredging the pieces in a mixture of flour, sale and pepper, then putting them into the very hot lard, and cooking it in the oven until done.

I think all of my cousins will agree with me that Grandmother’s fried chicken was to die for.  As long as she lived and was able to cook, she made her fried chicken in the oven, and it was always fried in lard.  Since she and Papa both lived to their late 90’s, I think the secret of longevity is not so much in what you eat, but the purity of what you eat, along with the exercise you get by working hard all day the way my grandparents did, and the way my mom and aunts and uncles also did.

Mark and Doug Mark and Doug Blandford

Doug Blandford recalls:  There was a story Daddy (Leo) used to love telling.  Our Uncle Joe’s first wife, Maude, was a rambunctious personality, and so was Daddy, and they used to get each others goat.  Daddy took a couple walnuts, freshly fallen from the tree, still in their green outer shells.  They were about the size of a baseball!  He noticed that one of Maude’s sons, Don or Jerry, was whining, and Daddy saw his chance.  He placed both of the walnuts inside the boy’s diaper.  Aunt Maude heard the kid whimpering, felt his diaper and saw he needed a change.  Well, when she removed the diaper and saw those walnuts roll across the floor Aunt Maude about had a heart attack.  Daddy saw the whole thing and had the laugh of his life.  Another time he was passing out homemade ice cream to the folks and put lard in Aunt Maude’s bowl.  Those two characters are playing jokes in heaven, I’m sure.

I think now you are getting an idea of why I have turned out a bit twisted.  With ancestors like these (and cousins like these) how else could I be?  But oh, how I love them all.


Memories From Reunion 2000, Part 2

cousins are Tonight will feature Marie, Ray (baby bro) and Carol (my cousin, now deceased and missed by all).

Grandmother & Marie Marie has always been the shortest member of the family, at barely 5’2″, in a family that averages closer to 6 feet and over for the guys, and 5’5″ for the girls, except for Carol, who was also short.

Marie Blandford Ward recalls:  When we were growing up, though much different from kids these days in many ways, we were always “starved” when we came home from school.  Our snacks were usually a concoction of vinegar, sugar and water with Mother’s home-made bread, or left over home-made biscuits, split in half and fried in bacon grease–very good.  But the best aroma and treat  was on Friday when Mother always had two pots of vegetable soup on the stove, one with onion and one without.  She didn’t start putting meat in it until later years when she found that way to use beef steaks.  It may sound strange, but anyone who ate her soup thought it was delicious.

Having had Grandmother’s soup, I can tell you for myself, it was delicious.  I was lucky enough to grow up across the pasture from her house, and would run across and spend afternoons with her during the summer, when my cousins were busy doing other things, and Grandmother and I would have lunch–with Papa of course, then after cleaning up the kitchen, would watch soap operas on her TV.  She may have been the first in the family to have a TV, and it was great living so close to her.

family-224Fr. Ray Goetz recalls:  When Aunt Maude wasn’t looking, Uncle Joe would give us “samples” of ice cream or barbecue.  He would always offer it as if he really needed an opinion, and he would keep giving us more until he was “satisfied” that it was as good as we were saying it was.  He is also the one who told us that if we would look under the bleachers at the race track, we might find some nice surprises.  So Doug and I learned that if we went to the track the day after the races and looked under the stands we would find all the change that fell out of people’s pockets.  I used to get to ride on the tractor with him as he was working in the field.  He was always very kind and friendly, but it was rare to get a conversation out of him.  I suspect that he just didn’t know what to say to kids.  He liked us though.  He and Maude were my godparents.  Shortly before he died we were and Marie and Haymen’s and I asked him if he remembered that they were my godparents.  He not only remembered, but he told me about the baptism (which was pretty typical of all infant baptisms of that day).

graduatesDan, Diane, Carol Blandford, and Angie Goetz (that’s me) at our 8th grade graduation.

Carol Blandford Medley recalls:  Once I asked Grandmother how in the world she raised all those children when I find three is more than I can handle.  She replied, no problem at all.  They each had a job to do (or a chore).  My Dad’s (George) was cutting everyone’s hair.  She said, “He did a great job too.”  That was told to me when she was 97 years old.  I also remember when we would visit Grandmother and Papa.  Daddy always said “you can’t wear those shorts to Mother’s house”.  He really had a special respect for Grandmother.

Mary in the Window Mary Blandford Goetz (sitting in window) recalls:  On rare occasions Mother would take her egg money and buy a big beef chuck roast.  She would try to have some left over for hash on Monday.  Then there was country ham.  Papa and the boys always killed about a dozen hogs in the late fall, as soon as it got cold enough that the meat wouldn’t spoil before it could be processed.  So we had ham some Sundays.

I’ve always felt so spoiled when I have heard these stories from my mom.  How hard the times were back then, and how easy we have it today.  She is a wonderful woman, still going strong at 93, and healthier than all of her 7 children combined.  And she never takes having food on the table for granted.   We grew up poor, but I never felt that way, because she always made us feel like we had it all.  And from what I remember, the same thing went for all of my cousins.  Most of us grew up within a mile or so of each other, so we definitely were each others first friends.

More to come for many more days.



Another Train Wrecked Day

100_2544 It all started when I made the huge mistake of getting out of my recliner.   I have

I mean, I had some shelves next to my recliner where I kept a lot of things I work on at different times.  Also there were my Nooks (I have two of them) some candy bars, fudge, a pile of recipes that I plan to put in notebooks, yarn, just everything I need at my side for when I want to use it.  So back to getting up.  My body got up but my brain decided it didn’t want to, so suddenly I found myself on my butt, wedged between the shelves and the recliner with the trash can cradled in my lap.  Don’t even ask.  I have no idea how it happened, but as soon as I realized what anyone would see if they walked in at that moment, I started laughing.  I mean, really, how did I manage to get the trash can in my lap?  I absolutely don’t know, but it just struck me as so funny that all I could do was laugh.  I tried about three times to get back up, and each time ended up falling again.  I finally realized I would have to stop laughing so hard and focus on grabbing hold of the chair to get back in it.  Mission finally accomplished, but when I sat down in the recliner I still had the trash can cuddled in my lap.  So…more laughter.  If anyone had walked in at that point I would probably be off to the funny farm now.

100_2542 Finally got up and went to the kitchen to get something to eat.  Managed to knock this stuff off the counter while trying to get a fork out of the drawer.  Now someone just tell me that doesn’t take a special kind of talent.

100_2548 After all the trouble of getting the fork and a serving spoon out of the drawer, I got my casserole out of the fridge.  And PLOP!  Lunner hit the floor.  As tempting as it was to grab a chicken thigh from the top, I resisted, grabbed the paper towels instead, and cleaned it up.  Stomach growling all the time, and me almost crying because I really wanted some of that casserole.  Well, it was good yesterday when I first tried it.

100_2549 To add insult to injury, I opened the fridge again and my container of apples, cranberries and sweet potatoes fell out, and the plastic container broke.  Of course it had to.  It was one of my favorites.  This time I had to use more paper towels and then a mop to get the sticky stuff up.  It still feels sticky, but I may have to throw some sand or something like that to get the sticky off.  Or maybe cornmeal, since I don’t have any sand.  Hummm, I wonder if I could build a sandbox in my bedroom?  Nah.  I want to turn it into a container garden.  Maybe put some grow lights in the ceiling light, and plant some herbs and stack them around in here.  I could leave room to get to the computer, now that it’s working again.  Had to call the techy guy to get the blog to work.  He fixed it for me.  Something about a broken link.  Whatever.  It seems to be doing okay right now.  Guess I’ll know more when I try to post this.

Anyway, back at the ranch, the therapy person came again and we walked down the hall.  My camera was in the little carrier under the seat of the walker, and I went all the way to the floor to ceiling window on the end.  You have no idea how hard that was for me, because I have a horrible fear of heights.  But when we got there I looked out and saw all the trees in town, so I pulled out the camera. 100_2545 100_2547 I once heard Owensboro referred to as the city of trees, and looking out that window I can see why.  Of course we’re also known for our barbecue.  But this time of year, I prefer the fall colors, so I’ll leave you with them.  No train wrecks outside the big window.