Tag Archives: family love

Olio 2/13/17

Olio: a miscellaneous collection of things

And this is all over the place today.

Yesterday it was spring and the wind howled, taking out the power for a few hours before we got home. Last night it got very cold and the wind howled, rattling the dog run dormer on the back of the house and whistling through the edges of the metal roof.  This morning was crystal and the wind still howled.  Out to start the car to warm up for the grandson run to the bus stop and this was the view.



The sun higher each day, rising above the ridges in the east and lighting the tops of the other ridges while our hollow was still in the dawn and the waning moon still high in the western sky.

As grandson was grabbing his coat and pulling or pushing on the bi-fold hall closet door, it sounded like someone dropping tinker toys (do you remember them, I do).  Most of the doors in the house are beautiful doors handmade by eldest son when he was finishing the inside of the house, but rather than make a door that opened out into the hall, we opted for a bi-fold on that closet.  This is what happened.

Door broke


The top separated from the side and the slates came tumbling down.  Thanks first to my Dad who taught me to tackle most repairs, from replacing the insides of a toilet or even a whole toilet, replacing garbage disposals when in the city and they were used, installing faucets, door locks and knobs, and on and on.  Next to  eldest son who will set me to work on a job with some instruction, then go off to do a different job himself, the door was taken down, the slats were carefully put back in the slots, lined up top and bottom and the door hammered back together with a new glue joint and a screw for good measure.  The pilot hole drilled, the screw set, the door rehung, good as new (hopefully).



The day’s mail brought the parts to the first antique spinning wheel that was bought.  The repairs are wonderful and there is a second bobbin.  The wheel was put back together, the instructional video watched twice before attempting to put the double drive band on, and she was taken for a spin.


The front near leg still splays out a bit too much.  When the wheel arrived, that leg had an adhesive spongy material on one side of it, a shim of sorts?  That repair is on me to resolve.  The wheel does spin and draws in the singles, but it has a tendency to throw the drive band after about a dozen rotations.  Some adjustments must still be made, but my knowledge is too novice to know what so it has been thrown out into the ether for answers.  It is a beauty, but it needs to be functional.

For as long as I can remember, each Valentine’s Day, my Dad sent each of his girls from wife to great granddaughters a kid’s type valentine card.  When he passed in December of 2015, I knew I wouldn’t get any more of them, but Valentine’s Day 2016 came and there was an envelope with a card for me, one each for daughter and granddaughter and the envelope looked like it could have been written by him.  I cried, daughter had to open it, my younger brother had decided that he was going to carry on the tradition.  Today the envelope arrived and this was inside, again with that oh so familiar handwriting.  His handwriting is eerily similar to Dad’s.



Yes, it made me cry again, but tears of sweet memories.

Sunday Musings

Yesterday was the Winter Holiday Market and it seemed like spring time outdoors.  We had a beautiful day that rose to 70 f (21 c), certainly not mid December weather in the Virginia mountains, but it was delightful.  I didn’t even put up my canopy tent.  There were many more vendors than in November and lots of shoppers looking for gifts for family, office staff, and friends.  The day was so much fun and the sales for everyone were good.

Once packed up and home, K and I did a quick update to remove some one of a kind items from my Etsy shop that sold at the Market and then Mountaingdad and I tossed small suitcases in the car and drove the hour to Roanoke to attend the Holiday Party of his HOG Club.  We are both fairly introverted and he is new to the club, so we wondered if we would end up at a table talking to each other for the evening.  Instead, we put on our big kid pants and approached a table with two couples and asked to sit with them.  Another couple they knew joined us at the 8 person table and we really had a good time.  There was a buffet dinner, a DJ (the music wasn’t really our style most of the night, but there were some songs we could dance to), door prizes, a very playful goodbye to the old director and an equally playful passing of the torch to the new director.  We had reserved a room in the hotel where it was held, so we didn’t have to drive home after 11 p.m., so we had a nice night, a slow start this morning followed by a big free breakfast and the drive home.

Today, I inventoried what came home with me from the Holiday Market and I updated the shop with some holiday price cuts.

Also today, I found out that my 92 year old Dad is back in the hospital for the second time this week and really not doing very well.  I will travel across the state on Tuesday with one of my cousins and Mountaingdad to see him and my stepmom and be there when they do a procedure to determine where he stands and to try to provide him some relief.  It is difficult for me to accept that though his mind is still sharp, that this vibrant man who was still delivering Meals on Wheels a few short months ago is now frail and unwell.  I am thankful the 68 years I have had with this special man and hope that he recovers from this.  This is a difficult time for us all.


I was fortunate to have my paternal grandfather in my life until I was in my early 30’s.  When I was a teen and my great grandmother was in a geriatric ward for a couple of years, he would tell me tales of his young life.  He grew up in a railroad family and was known to “ride the rails.”  As a young man, he injured and lost one of his eyes with a pocket knife accident and had a glass eye. Though he had an interesting young life and was probably a bit of a bad boy, he was a gentle, hardworking man that owned his own business and raised two sons that both far exceeded his 8th grade education, both getting University degrees in engineering.  As an older man, he was a bit of a curmudgeon.

I was the first grandchild and always felt a special bond with him.  As a young adult, I would go to the farmers’ market then take baskets of peas or butter beans to my grandparents home and my grandmom and I would shell them for dinner and for the freezer.  More than once, Pop as all of us grandkids called him would sit on the porch with us and would pick up a handful of beans and start shelling.  My grandmom would comment that she had never seen him do that before.

I had a young kitten and once asked them if they would keep it for a week while I flew to Hawaii to met my husband on R & R.  They had no pets as Pop wasn’t fond of them, but indeed they did keep my kitten.  One of the things he disliked was having the cat rub around his legs as cats are prone to do.  It is strange that as I am aging, I don’t like a cat to rub on me and though we have two outdoor cats and two dogs, I don’t like them to lick me.

Once I asked him if he had seen a comic in the paper and though he was reading the paper, he told me he didn’t read the comics.  I couldn’t believe that anyone didn’t read them, but other than the occasional one that my husband points out to me, I no longer read them, none of the good ones are in print anymore.

When my first husband and I started having marital problems, it was obviously distressing to him.  After I divorced and met my current husband, the love of my life, my grandfather took him aside and informed Jim that if he ever hurt me, that he would have to answer to him.  As it turned out, when Pop had a heart attack at home and my grandmother called me to come to her, I was a city away at work.  Jim was close by and he hurried to their home to help my grandmom while the medics were there and until I could get there.

Recently, I have thought of him many times, when an impatient driver behind us honked his horn at Jim, I was reminded of how Pop would continue to sit, roll down his window and point over the top of his car; as I fuss at the cat for rubbing against my legs on the porch or as one of the dogs tries to “kiss” me; when Jim points out a comic in the paper that he thought I would appreciate.  Perhaps, I too am becoming a curmudgeon.