Thursday, May 31, 2012

Lucketts Virginia

One of the places I wanted to go while in Virginia was Lucketts. Lucketts is where my grandmother was raised. I woke up the first day I was in Virginia and it hit me that Miss Mustard Seed had a booth in a shop there. I knew that I had make a stop there.

On Saturday we made a stop at The Old Lucketts Store

Oh my! What a great place.   I could have spent hours and hours there, but it was hot.  Super hot.  I made a beeline for Miss Mustard Seeds area.

Because space was limited, especially with our treasures from the farm, I had to restrain myself.  I purchased these keys to go with the lock we salvaged at the farm.

I also purchased this watering can vase from another vendor.

If you are in the area you won't be disappointed if you stop by.  If so you need take a peek at the restored school building across the street.  This is the building where my grandmother went to school.

They are in the process of finishing the restoration of this building.  I am so pleased with all the small details that have been maintained.  After checking out the school we ended driving out into the country.

We went on a search for Granny's place.  The home was built by my maternal great grandparents. 

I have a picture of this home from the 1950's.  It really hadn't changed much.  I was amazed to see that the same fence is there.  I don't know of many fences built today that will still be standing in 50 years.  They sure don't make things the way they use to.

This home is still in the family.  My aunt by marriage, Ada, still lives here.  She moved in as a young bride with my great grandparents and raised four children here.  When we would go visit the men were usually in the fields and Ada and Granny together in the home.  It always makes me think of Olivia and Grandma on the Waltons.  My hope is that this land and home will stay in the family for generations to come. 

May your day be filled with joy and contentment.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Chasing Roots

It had been ten years since I had been to Virginia. Although I still have family there I know that with Pops passing I may never return. I have deep roots there and knew I needed to take some time to chase them down.

My great grandfather Donohoe grew up on a farm that was about 800 acres. He ended up married to a neighbor girl, Carrie. Carrie and her sister Cora lived with their parents on a 300 acre farm. Seeing as how Cora never married the land ended up in the hands of my great-grandfather Donohoe.

When my grandparents, Mom & Pop, married they ended up settled in a home across from the home Carrie and Cora grew up in. For years they were neighbors to Aunt Cora. They lived there from '40's until Pop's brothers forced a sell of all the land in the '70's.

The place we refer to as the old place or the farm is where I will begin. Aunt Cora lived in her childhood home all her life. When she passed away no one moved into her home. No one did anything with the place including clearing it out. My mom said she has no idea why. She said growing up there was even home canned goods still in the cellar. After the farm was sold Aunt Cora's place was bulldozed. Luckily for us it was dropped and there most of it lays.

Chuck and my mom climbed up the debris and did a little digging. There were able to pull out bits and pieces. One of the things they found were bricks from the chimney. Considering the bricks are over 100 years old they are in great condition. Full bricks that didn't even have mortar on them.

We took enough for all of us, including the grand kids to all have one.  The younger grand kids didn't quite understand why we wanted bricks.  I know that in time they will cherish the link to their past.  It was like the bricks had been waiting for us!

Not far from Aunt Cora's Pop had built a small barn for the cows. 

The barn is still standing and as we looked over my sister spotted a bucket that had been turned over the fence post!

So many questions.  Who put the bucket over the post?  How long had it been there?  I know that it had been there for a while as the bottom is no longer in tact.

There was a door leaning against the barn. 

Chuck said that it was perfect.  No rot and it looked like it could have still been used.   There was part of the door lock still on the door and Chuck took it off for me.

Our intent when we talked about going to the old place was to get boards off of the big red barn.  The barn is no longer there.  We did the next best thing and took boards off of the cow barn.

The next best thing turned out to be the best thing.  Mom remembers Pop building this barn.  Knowing that Pop physically touched the boards while building this barn... wow... what a great piece of history to have.  I have some plans for the boards.  I will share when I get it all together. 

In front of Aunt Coras were a stack of stones.  Mom said the stones were part of a fireplace.  A fireplace to slave quarters.  I debated if I should share this.  I know it brings to mind different emotions from different people.  What I will say is that although I don't think it was right to own another human times were different then.  From dates it looks like that occurred when my great-great grandparents ran the farm. 

This area must have been used for dumping or storage.  There were many treasures uncovered in this area.

This poker was a favorite find of moms.

The home where mom was raised is no longer there. When it was demolished the debris was cleared away.  Chuck did go to that area and found a couple of things. 

He found one of my favorite type of Ball jar.  I will always wonder if Mom (grandmother) used this jar. 

He also found this bucket.  The bottom is missing and I plan to use it as a planter.

Around the old barn this jug was found.  Pop use to make homemade root beer.  Could this jug have been used for that?

An old pully wheel was found.  I am not sure but I think it had a leather belt that ran around it to operate machinery. 

I imagine many would see these things as junk. I see them as a link to my families past. As sad I am that the barn and house were no longer standing I am glad that we went there. It gave me some closure and I am happy to have shared it with Chuck and Megan. If you made it to the end of this post... thank you for sharing my journey. May your day be filled with joy and contentment.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Back Home Again in...

The past few days have been jammed packed.  Chuck is on vacation for the next week.  We had  plans to go up to Lake Michigan but have cancelled that.  After traveling over 1200 miles we are looking forward to some quiet time at home.  We made a list of things to accomplish on the way home.   I have lots to share from my trip.  Time permitting I will be back this week. 

Home is the nicest word there is ~ Laura Ingalls Wilder

So true... it is good to be home!


Tuesday, May 22, 2012

The Little Things

For a little over a month my family has been hit hard by loss.  First we lost my Aunt Mallie (my dad's sister),  and then there was the sudden loss of Jack (my mom's brother) and last night Pop (mom's dad) left us.  That is a tremendous amount of loss is such a short amount of time.  The good thing is that I know they are all in a better place.  There will be no  more suffering and no more pain for any of them.

The loss of Pop has hit me the hardest.  As most of you know I live in Indiana and Pop lived in Virginia.  It has been a long time since I have seen him.  As I said to Chuck last night that doesn't mean that the love I felt for him was any less.  I thought of him often.

As I was waking up this morning my heart and mind were overwhelmed with thoughts of Pop and Mom (what everyone called my grandmother).  I have great memories of the two of them and my time spent in Virginia.  As a child we went out every summer to visit.  Precious memories really.

My heart is overwhelmed with thoughts of the little things.  The way Pop would hold me on his lap when I was young and tell me a story of the time I was a baby.  While my dad was overseas mom and I stayed there.  He would tell me that every morning when he walked by my room I would be waiting in my crib and would stretch my arms up for him to come and get me when he walked by. 

There is a distinctive smell of dirt, oil and animal.  You know a barn smell that makes me think of Pop and the old red barn.  The barn where I helped my cousin Rick gather soda bottles for return money and it made Jack so mad.  He said he was saving those bottles.  We were kids and we were just happy that Rick bought fireworks to share.

Pop always had a sweet tooth.  When we were going to the store he would sometimes gives us money to bring him some candy back.  I am not sure who was happiest about the candy... Pop or his grand kids.  You know that was back in the 70's when candy wasn't given to children the way it is now.

The smell of petunias, windows open at night with the sounds of crickets, dinners around the table and evenings spent sitting on the porch are the memories I hold dear of Mom and Pop.  Nothing fancy, just the little things that mean the most. 

With the loss of Pop and Mom being gone for many, many years before him I feel like a chapter in my life is coming to an end.    A very, very good chapter that I will hold near and dear!

My advise is to slow down and cherish the little things.  After all they are the things that truly matter.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Around My Yard

Most of the weekend was spent outside. Would you like to join me for a walk?   The first stop is Megan's garden.  She has been begging for her own space so this flower bed has become her very own.  My mom gifted her the border edging to help keep the boys out.  The swing set and back porch are close to this area so we will see if this helps. 

This is the first plant she planted. 

Chuck spotted this and when we saw the name we knew it was a must have!

Her cherry tomato is doing quite well.  Can you see the little green guy hiding? 

She has already harvested her first one.  It doesn't get much better then straight off the vine!

Chuck finished putting the fencing around the garden Sunday afternoon.  Everything is coming along nicely. 

Can you tell how dry it is?  Spring has been dry and I wonder if the summer will be also.  After this picture the hose was pulled out and the sprinkler provided a nice watering.

Have I told you how much I love my raised beds?  Seriously they are great.  Super easy to weed.  The lettuce is starting to bolt with the heat.   Soon it will be coming out and then I need to decide what to plant next.  That is a great problem to have! 

I have strawberries in the other raised bed.  This is the first year they have produced.  Megan is eating them so fast that I don't think I will ever have enough to do anything with. 

I'll have to plan a trip to the U pick place so I can make jam.

All of the flowers have been planted.  I have a couple hanging baskets off of the back porch. 

There is quite a bit of shade in the front landscaping.  Instead of buying flats this year I bought hanging baskets.  They were on special for $4.88  Some of them were planted whole. 

Others were split apart.  The price and the size of the flowers made for a better deal. 

There is still much to do in the yard, but I feel like we have made a great start.   I am glad you came along for a walk with me. 

May your day be filled with joy and contentment.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Kindergarten Graduation

The anticipation for this event has been high for the past week. We arrived early to get a front row seat and have some time to take some pictures.

I was a little bit sad the morning of graduation.  Thinking about how fast the past five years have gone.  It feels like yesterday I was holding my sweet girl for the first time.  As bittersweet as it is the sadness passed quickly and was replaced by pride and joy. 

Waiting for her name to be called.  Can you tell that she was a little bit excited? lol

Our sweet graduate! Megan, we are so proud of you!

May your day be filled with joy and contentment!