Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Two-three-four-five-six-seven-eight-nine pairs of sandals in one!

The NorDakPurl Gurl has been involved in Relay for Life for several years. In February her group has a silent auction to raise funds. This year The Purl Gurl called me, excited to have had a certain pair of sandals donated. "They're so cute! One pair of soles with several pair of tops to add!"

"Switch Flops!" I hooted over the phone! I knew that very moment I needed them, and The Purl Gurl was instructed to buy the sandals at any cost.

Last summer The California Dreamin' Gurl was visiting and we met her friend, Carrie, at Chico Hot Springs. Carrie's mom had sent her a pair of switch flops from Florida and we laughed until we cried over the name and sheer idea behind the shoes.The gal that invented them thought up the idea of interchangeable shoe tops to fulfill an assignment in a high school art class.

She is now a millionaire so the joke's on us.
Sure enough, I placed the high bid and the sandals were mine! It really wasn't much of a battle - remember, the silent auction was held in North Dakota in the middle of one of the worst snowy winters in history.

Today I wore my shoes for the first time and the teachers LOVED them. And by pure coincidence this ad was on the front page of today's paper:
 Never in my wildest dreams did I consider myself a trendsetter - even in Montana!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Hoppy Easter!

 All the families came into town Wednesday afternoon and the festivities began!

The number one thing on The Pirate's list was for me to fix his b"LANK"et. "Lank" is the baby blanket his Aunt "Chick Who Flew the Coop" made for him when he was born. I had to resew the entire thing BUT I became a heroine!

The grandkids were so happy to see each other, what a great reunion! They were pleased with themselves Thursday morning when they confided in me that Sadie Lou came up with the idea - if they got their pjs on and were in bed when the parents came to tell them it was bedtime, they could all sleep in the same bed just like they have always done! (It worked!)

The carnival from last summer must have been a real hit with them, because they spent all Thursday afternoon planning another one. They added a chalk drawing contest and "The Crack Game" - rolling a ball up a crack in the driveway marked with  points at certain spots where the participant hopes the ball will stop.
 We dyed eggs with silk from old ties and decided that this would become a yearly activity. We also decided that these eggs were for looks only and not to be eaten. Next year all kiddos will be allowed to make them - the process was that easy. We will also try to use hollow eggs, I've never had much luck with this but it's worth a try. So thank you Martha Stewart for this project!
 The three younger kiddos dyed eggs outside, what a beautiful day!
 This year the kiddos boundary was expanded to, "If you can see the house you're ok" and they were so excited to be able to visit the neighbor's horses!
 The girls wore their sweaters and dresses for Easter and looked very sweet.
Spring is finally here!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

F. William Jamison, 1890-1913

I have loved family stories and genealogy since I was a small child. I remember the day Mom and my Great-aunt Kit were cleaning out a shed in the back of Aunt Kit's yard in Boulder. Among other things it was filled with old, long, party dresses - my mom's prom dresses perhaps - and old photos. I asked, no really, I begged them to let me keep the old photos, but my mom thinking of the car trip back to Washington said no, they were photos of no one that either she or Aunt Kit knew and so they were thrown into the burning barrel. Later, when I began locating old photos on the internet including those of HER grandparents, Mom said she wished she'd listened and let me keep the old photos.

The family lived in Lyons, Colorado where they owned an orchard. Years later - perhaps the same trip as the photo burning incident - I visited my Great-uncle John on the family place.  We walked back to the chicken coop and I was told that that had been the original home of the Jamison's when they arrived in Colorado.
One of the items they kept was the old Jamison family Bible. Many years later it was given to me to keep, acknowledging that I was to be the keeper of the family history.  This Bible belonged to my grandmother Sadie's family.

Inside the Bible it notes that William F.. Jamison was born August 31, 1890:
This memory was provided by my mother. She told me this story many years ago when I found a small piece of paper in that old family Bible. 
One fall day eleven year old  (William) Fred was in a cart racing down the dirt hill when he ran into a barbed wire fence. His leg was deeply cut and soon infection took over. Because the family lived on a farm and all hands were necessary and kept busy, my great-grandmother sent Fred into town with neighbors. Her first communication on his condition was from Fred himself in this letter:
                       St. Lukes Hospital
                       Nov. 12 - 1901
Dear Mother,
                         I thought I would 
answer your letter that necktie was
very pretty. John gave me a watch
and it was very nice. My leg is cut
off and I will be home in two weeks
How is pe(a)nut? Mrs. Lewis invited
me to Thanksgiving if I could not
come home by Thanksgiving. I g(u)ess 
I will close for the time.
                    Your one leg(g)ed Son
                    Fred Jamison
                It is not good writing

I can imagine my heartsick Great-grandmother tucking this little note into the Bible, grateful that it was not a death that she was recording but knowing that it was a monumental change in Fred's life.
A decade went by and shortly before Fred's death, he was in a difficult situation and went to his brother, John, asking for money.
John's wife, the keeper of the finances, wouldn't allow it and a short time after Fred drowned. Mom said from that day on John always had his own money.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Grace, John, Alfred holding Katherine,  W. Fred, Sadie and Catherine (about 1897)
This bowl and pitcher belonged to my Great-grandmother Catherine Jamison:

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Journal 2010

 The 2010 published edition has arrived! 
I'm as happy with this year's journal as I was with last year's edition. If you haven't thought of publishing your blog you should...I used Blog2print. The cost is very reasonable, less than $50 and no shipping costs! This company also offers a softcover edition or a version that you can download. This is something that I will continue for many years. Hubby has even gotten into the swing of things and will often look at me and ask, "Shouldn't this be a Blogging moment?"

Friday, April 1, 2011

A fond farewell.

Aunt Betty, Bill and Cousin Linda
Today was my Aunt Betty's funeral, last weekend my cousin Linda called to tell me that her mother had passed away on March 24th. Betty was my mother's brother's first wife. I may have seen my "uncle" three times over the years. He was a nice guest, but my Aunt Betty and her second husband, Uncle Ole - they were family.
Gini, Linda, and Peg
We were lucky to be able to have them as family. Aunt Betty may have wanted her girls to have extended family and Uncle Ole certainly was happy to have a family - daughters, nieces, nephews, and in-laws. It was with effort made by our parents that cousins, aunts, and uncles were not merely "related" - but became family.

Visits were made back and forth over the years. Mom, Dad, Ole and Betty enjoyed at least one trip to Wisconsin visiting Aunt Betty's daughter, Gini, at her resort. Weddings were attended and grandchildren celebrated.
Uncle Ole, Aunt Betty and Vicki
Uncle Ole and Dad at Gini's 
Hubby and I had just built the house the last time Aunt Betty and Uncle Ole visited. Sadly, Ole's memory was beginning to go but as he took a tour of our house, he said, "I used to be a pretty good carpenter before I retired you know, and your house is very well built."

Aunt Betty loved receiving snail mail and usually would give me a quick call of thanks after receiving a card or letter. During one of our last calls she sadly asked if I knew her second daughter, Peggy, had passed away. She said she never thought that she would outlive two daughters. It just wasn't the way things were supposed to be.

She was a great lady and we are grateful that she made the effort to be a part of our family over the years. Aunt Betty will be missed by her Montana family!
Aunt Betty
Uncle Ole