Sunday, October 31, 2010

Sentimental Sunday, The Hero Was Missed.

I was going to make a post about the costumes I made for Halloween, but it will have to wait because I still don't have all the pictures.  This is a picture of the Hero with TexasBlu as Mrs Bianca of The Rescuers. The Hero helped design the costume.  You can tell she always looked for something different. ; ) My daughter Little Miss Sunshine and the First son, as well as my mother are also in the picture.
This year, the making of costumes for my 5 grandsons was actually hard for me to do. I made costumes for my children in the past, but the Hero was always there to help me develop the pattern.  He loved it when I would come up with something different to do, because he could configure what I wanted into the correct dimensions for my pattern.  That gave him a part in the activity. Of course, he was never enthusiastic about the late hours or the horrendous mess that seemed to collect with the endeavor.  I can remember many a time he would appear at the door and say "Aren't you coming to bed yet?"  I thought at the time. 'What does it matter?'  It did matter.  It was less time that was spent with him, but I didn't know that was the way it was to be.  He was tolerant and there are stories around the challenge he had with my over enthusiasm to create...well, not the creation, but the mess that went with it. 
Many thoughts were to go through my mind during the last three weeks as I made costumes for the 5 little boys.  The Hero would have loved it.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

52 Weeks To Better Genealogy - Challenge #44 - Giving Back

This Genealogy challenge fostered by Amy Coffin . 
Trademark Genea-Bloggers
Genea-Bloggers on FaceBook issued the Week 44 challenge: Research ways to give back to the genealogy community, to examine some different ways genealogists can donate their time and effort in kind. 
I being a habitual volunteer have come across some new diverse ways to volunteer besides the usual methods of Random Acts of Kindness,volunteering at a library,  taking pictures of tombstones, or Indexing for various online websites such as Footnote, Ancestry, and FamilySearch.  I do them all.  Not to toot my horn, just saying, I work with them.  It is so exciting to see others faces glow as they find new information that wasn't available to them before.  I love it!
The newer methods I have become involved with actually evolved in my life through the Genea-Bloggers. (If you are interested in making your own Genealogy blog to connect with like minded or same surname searching people click here and you will see a well oiled machine to assist you.)  I love blogging.  I love sharing.  A few of the bloggers started making FaceBook sharing and Twitter sharing available on their blogs.  I was already on Facebook to watch over and share with my grandchildren, so I began to search for the networking blogs they were talking about.  I joined that community and now through the networking and share connect on other blogs, I have been able to begin bringing my marginal genealogy friends closer to the research community and help them in their quest.
I then joined Twitter.  I at first floundered wondering what on earth is this social media thing.  Then when I added the element of TweetDeck to Twitter. A whole new world of information opened up for me. I could set filters for genealogy, family history, history, and people who were in the know or promoting their websites or information would come flowing in.  The next natural step was for me to visit the site that had been tweeted about and see if it was something my friends would benefit by or if one of my Genea-Blogger friends would benefit being promoted.  They gave so much to me it was only natural to give back to them.  This is a wonderful tool to aid in bringing more resources to light for the marginal web surfer.
The new FamilySearch Wiki and WikiTree are great new areas for volunteering.  You can build your own page about a family based on the how and why of your research.  You can add to information that is already there.
Within in the FamilySearch Wiki there are social forums, Area forums, just a wonderful format for sharing.
I love giving and I give to see joy in others faces.  Life is AWESOME!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Sentimental Sunday The Hero as a New Father

I talked about the Hero being a Super Hero last week.  Well, his desire to protect the world carried over to his adult life.
He said when our first child was born that his life changed in the instant he saw her. 
I went to the hospital thinking I would go back home.  He went knowing we would come back with a baby.  He was distraught when they would not allow him back in the labor rooms.  Oh my it was the dark ages of Houston medicine.  He wrote a poem it will be a little later when I get it up.
I have told my story before (click here and it will take you there).
He was fond of telling everyone that He got to see our daughter and hold her first.  That she was the most beautiful child in the whole world.
He instantly became her protector.  'Grrrrr' said the dog to the approaching invader.  What are you doing on MY territory.  Yep, pretty much that was him. 
We went to a restaurant when she was about a month old.  She being sensitive to noise (oh my was she) started screaming when the waiter dropped some dishes.  I was trying quiet her and eat because we were traveling and on a tight time schedule.  A kind lady came up offering to hold her while we ate.  You would have thought she had said, "Here let me TAKE her".  The hero grabbed her out of my arms and said "We are just fine", and off he went to the car with her in his protective arms, leaving me apologizing to the lady for his reaction.
There are other stories around this child and the hero, but that will be for another time.  Suffice it to say his connection was strong.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Who Says Technical Can't Be Feminine

One of the #genealogy twitter bunch talked about a new thumb drive that was out.  I was intrigued, so I looked.  It was a pretty bracelet she was talking about.  I had to buy it of course.  So, here is my newest technology gift to me.

Now I can look fashionable and be technically ready to capture my data. ; ) Don't you think I'm pretty? LOL 

Sentimental Sunday The Hero as Acting Like a Superhero.

I have verified this story with the Hero's mother.  It is true.  I thought it would be a good story as the grandchildren are gearing up to dress up for Halloween.
I have shared that the Hero had a very active imagination.  He was always thinking up something. He would look for how to make something happen.  He loved looking at the sky and watching the birds trying to figure out how they flew at the age of 5 and 6.  He believed in his Heroes.  His mother got him a Superman costume for Halloween.  One day he climbed out on the garage roof and jumped off.  He really thought he was going to fly because he had on his cape and had it stretched out.  Off he went, and oops, down he went.  His brother ran in to tell his mom that the Hero was lying flat on his back behind the garage. (At least he went off the back instead of where the concrete was..; )   )
 His mom was understanding and lovingly checked him out making sure he was okay, then she admonished him to not do it again.  He took the admonishment to heart.  LOL  He may not have been a rocket scientist at 6 but he wasn't stupid either.

Now why was GreatMother so understanding and loving when he had put himself into danger?
That is the wonderful part of the story.
The GreatMother revealed to me that at 7 she had done the same thing off their porch.  She said she can remember standing and envisioning how she would swoop up just before she would hit the ground.  She laughs and says..."Well, it didn't work."  I love it.

My second son unknowingly followed in their footsteps. At 4, he decided to jump out of a loft with a hanger to break his fall like batman's implements.  Well, it didn't.    Isn't life grand.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Some Left Some Didn't

The 1930's was the time of the Dust Bowl for some of my folks in Oklahoma. (If you click on Dust Bowl it will take you to Wikipedia for the subject.)  They were marginal farmers.  Thus when the drought hit, followed by the dust storms, they left for California.  I have been through a dust storm in the panhandle of Texas in recent years.  It lasted just an hour, but it was enough for me to understand the panic and suffocating feeling of the heat, dirt in the air you breathe and no visibility. It makes me thankful that after the disastrous events of the 1930's better conservation farming and irrigation techniques were developed to reduce the possibility of a recurrence of that time..

Clinton Oklahoma 1930's
Charles Langley was a gas station owner in Clinton, Oklahoma.  An area that was overcome by the dust storms.  His brother-in-law Lowery Bowen and sister Bessie moved with their 6 children to California for work.  Charles is said to have gone to California with them.  I tend to believe that he stayed and operated his gas station as it was on the legendary Route 66.  There are lots of interactive sites about that.  If he did go, he came back because he died in the Clinton, Oklahoma area.

 Lowery and Bessie stayed in California, as well as their children.  Their granddaughter was the person who contacted me and and let me know where they and gone.
Charles's nephew John moved to Missouri and stayed there.  The rest of the family stayed in the Pawnee County area.    
My mom's mother, Matilda Roberts Whitson, was a widow of 8 years at that time. She had 6 of 13 children still at home and 2 grandchildren. Their home was in Fay, Oklahoma.  If you have been to Custer County or Dewey County, Oklahoma then you know how sandy it is and dry and hot in the summer time. My grandmother owned a creamery and ironed and washed clothes during that time to make ends meet. Leaving was not an option.  They did not have transportation. Things of necessity were bought at a local grocery or a cousin or uncle would pick things up for them in the "big cities".  She would look at the Sears catalog and make dresses for the girls out of flour cloth.  I was told by her, she even cooked the squeal of the pig.  Thrifty and amazing person, I am glad to have her genes.
Mattie Whitson  Fay, Oklahoma 1930

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Sentimental Sunday How the Hero Got His Nickname

I have had some ask me what the Hero's name is.  I have to confess the reason I had not used his name is he had a fear of identity theft. 
I will share with you how he got his nickname. 
Picture Property of Hummer
The Hero was a twin.  He was the first born although the smallest and received his dad's name Edward Nicholas.  His twin was called T Richard (He is still very much alive, so I will refrain from using his full name.)  MomE wanted to call them "Nick and Dick"  After some thought and discussion with was declined (she always giggles after telling this) so, she chose to call them Ned and Ted.  He liked Ned, but it irritated him that no matter how he said it, half the time they thought he said Ted.  He would sigh and say, I would have preferred Nick.  Near Christmas, I will share with you why. ; )
So now you know how he came to be called Ned instead of Edward.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Mystery Monday: Open Questions and A Comforting Thought

When you read in 1798 that a man died intestate and his oldest son has pushed for the sale and division of the land with no mention of the mother.  You wonder mercy what was her son thinking of...oh wait...greed? 
No, a widow did not have rights to the land. According to Gale Cengage Learning site, Widows lost their claims to personal property, although they kept their one-third shares of real estate. Only Maryland and Virginia continued to allow widows a one-third share of personal property, a practice that Martha Griffith challenged in 1798.
Women's Land Rights History
This was the case: 
Griffith v. Griffith's Executors: 1798
Appellant: Martha Griffith
Appellees: Heirs of Samuel Griffith
Appellant's Claim: That under Maryland law a widow was entitled to a dower right of one-third her deceased husband's personal property, as well as his real property
Chief Lawyer for Appellees: Mr. Martin
Chief Lawyer for Appellant: Mr. Winchester
Justices: William Pinkney, Mr. Duvall, and Chief Justice Goldsborough
Place: Maryland
Dates of Decision: May term, 1798
Decision: The court of appeals awarded Martha Griffith one-third of her husband's personal property clear of debts — her dower rights to his real property (land, buildings) were not in question.
Significance: In this landmark decision Maryland allowed a widow a one-third share of her husband's personal estate as her dower-right. Because of this and other property decisions, Maryland women held higher status and had more control over their lives than elsewhere in early America. You can read more about by clicking here.
That answered my question about the son, but still my Barbara Kemp was basically left wanting. 
A find in the Bledsoe County Tennessee Deed Book Abstracts Books A-D was what gave the information to look for the Kemp family and proved the worth of my 4th great grandmother Barbara Kemp Hankins. 
This is what the Abstract said:
Page 95
Abstract of Pg 175  04 Aug 1825.  Barbara Hankins of County of Bledsoe, State of Tennessee in consideration of the Natural love and affection which I have and bareth unto Barbara Camp her aged mother and for her better support mare of the value of 60 dollars, seven head of cattle at 45 dollars, eight head of sheep at sixteen dollars, three beds at thirty dollars, six chairs at 3 dollars, one table at 3 dollars, one loom at 6 dollars, one wheel and reel at 3 dollars, s/Barbara (x) Hankins.  Witnesses: George Vaughn, Daniel Hankins... registered 16 Sep 1825
Don't you feel Barbara's love for yer mother. I so wish I had a picture of Barbara.  She never left Bledsoe County.  We don't know when either of them died. 
What were the tables and chairs like?
Were they from the sale of her home?
Did the spinning wheel look like this?
Answers I will never know. From this I do know that Barbara Kemp was an industrious woman.  She managed a farm in her older age, and she spun yarn and made cloth.
I am glad my ancestor was the source of love and kindness to her mother.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Sentimental Sunday The Hero and The Waitress

Back in 1969, the Hero was a bit arrogant.  My aunts passed judgement on him the first time they met him saying.  "A bit of a know it all wasn't he."  He had been part of a winning debate team and was in the habit of "knowing it all". 
He had a favorite hamburger called a Master Burger.  We had to drive a bit to get to the restaurant.  You can tell, it was a special trip.  One evening we went and it was getting late, but when it came to his Master Burger he held high standards.  There doesn't seem to be any Master Burger restaurants in Houston any longer so I can't give you a visual.  I have a clip art hamburger that will make you want a juicy hamburger.
 After we ordered, we sat and talked and talked and talked.  He became aware the food had not arrived and no waitress in sight.  He waited, then went to the entrance and inquired on what had happened with our order.  He was assured that it would be out quickly.  Well, if you call another 15 minutes quickly.  The Hero was getting annoyed.  The waitress delivered the food without an apology.  She didn't even smile. Our drinks were nearly gone because we had been waiting so long.  Did she ask if we would like more drink? NO.  It continued.  Class D service.  We finished our meal the food was good, but the Hero was hot under the collar.  He decided he would leave a penny as a tip to let the waitress know he did not approve of her service. 
We paid for our meal and went to the car.  He opened the car door for me (he was a gentleman for all our married life). As I sat down, he leaned down and said "a penny is too much."  With that, he closed the door and I saw him walked back into the restaurant. The waitress had just gone to our table; he was right behind her.  As she started to clean, he reached past her and took the penny. 
The look on her face as he stalked out the door was priceless.  I don't know if he said anything or not (he never told me), but the body language was enough.
Grandchildren, should he have done that?  Let me think, as I said he was arrogant in those days and felt his perception was correct all the time.  The waitress did not give good service and bad behavior should not be rewarded, on the other hand insulting someone is not the best either.  You will have to make up your own mind.  He felt that he was justified.  Maybe so.  Good night.  Love you all.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Sharing a Slice of Life #19 - "Get Into My Car"

I had two cars that were my big memories.  The first I will have to post a picture later, because I found it then lost it again.
When I turned sixteen, my dad bought me a car.  I was really bad did not respect it or take care of it.  Did a Duke's of Hazard over the rail road tracks and cracked the frame. Shame on me.
We sold it when I went away to school as I was living on campus.(that's a different story)

When I came back home my dad went down and helped me buy my own car.  A mid side Nash Rambler.  I loved it.  The seats let back all the way to let you lie back and relax if waiting.  The windows were electric.  It was a fun car, and so cute, a squarish box.   I painted Snoopy, Flowers, etc on it.  I was a regular flower child.  When the drive train went out I was so sad.

The next car that hasn't gone away, but should have is not a car.  It was a Big Blue Van.  When the Hero and I bought it, it was out of our financial reach and killed our budget.  On the other hand, it actually became a House Car, as the back seat would let down in a bed and we almost lived in it.  It was bought just before we took Texasblu to BYU in 1989.  My second son was born 2 months before we bought it.  It became like a home to him. Hence, the reason it is still sitting in our pasture like an abandoned car.  He keeps saying, "I can fix it up.  I love that Van."  I have to admit I have never had another vehicle that I love as much as the Blue Van.  It made it through 450,000 miles of fun, love, and business. When the pick up was broken, the van would take the beating. All the children and grandchildren down to the fourth grandchild were able to experience the fun.   It went from the Tetons, to Arizona, to Florida, To ALL of Texas. 
I agree with the son.  I love that Van. There are millions of stories around this one.