Farewell Toaster Oven

Toaster Oven Dec., 1959-Sept., 2018 You were a wedding gift 59 years ago. You’ve made our toast every morning and reheated our snacks. We remember who gave you to us. We intended to write GE to tell them about you, but didn’t. You outlived GE’s small appliance division anyway. You made our toast yesterday and then quietly turned off, not to be revived. Rest in … Continue reading Farewell Toaster Oven

Love of a foster dog

Goodbye, Winston…..revisiting a memory

Goodbye, Winston. When I agreed to foster Winston early in December, 2013, I thought he’d be around only a few weeks. He stayed four months. Just out of a bad situation of neglect, he was so happy to have a home, people to love—and a name—that he followed my every step. I’m sedentary, though, and my steps are slow. He needed playmates. Now he has … Continue reading Goodbye, Winston…..revisiting a memory

Looking For—My Senior Malady

  Everything in its place—and it still gets lost. Somebody, most often me, is always misplacing something. It’s like a senior moment but with things, and it’s getting worse. If it’s not my glasses, it’s the car keys, or my credit card, or the door key. Or any combination, or something else. What’s lost usually turns up, but I may be using up my luck. … Continue reading Looking For—My Senior Malady

The Last of Mountain Tom

Lee Freeman paints Tom as an urban legend in a scholarly paper. Here are the first paragraphs: Tales from Beyond the Grave: The Life and Legend of Thomas Marion “Mountain Tom” Clark By Lee Freeman, Local Historian/Genealogist for the Florence-Lauderdale Public Library in Florence, Alabama. Most locals have seen the marker and know the story of how Tom aka “Mountain Tom” Clark lies buried underneath East … Continue reading The Last of Mountain Tom

Ad for elephant on display in Alabama frontier in 1810 before roads and cities. by Jennie Helderman

An Elephant, Stag and Rambling about Research

  By Jennie Helderman In 1810 a man in Huntsville, Alabama, sold tickets to see an elephant. I have a copy of the flyer advertising the event. Now I happen to know that in 1810 Huntsville was the western frontier. Very few people lived there, and travel was hard. So how did an elephant get to Huntsville? And how could the man keep the elephant … Continue reading An Elephant, Stag and Rambling about Research

Family stubborn streak traced to woman who sat in chair 17 years and was buried sitting up. southern funerals by Jennie Helderman

The Mother of All Stubborn Streaks

This story isn’t a funeral story, not exactly, but stubborn to the death is close enough. A stubborn streak runs through my husband’s family. If he or certain of his forebearers take a stand, the crash of all the techtonic plates of the Pacific Rim won’t budge them an inch. The mother of all stubborn streaks and there’s indication the stubborness may be intensifying. I know where … Continue reading The Mother of All Stubborn Streaks


I Knew Her As Mother

The picture is of Kathleen Russell of Walnut Grove, Alabama, from the 1931 Glomerata of Auburn University. You might have known her as Kathleen Miller, married to Ed Miller of Gadsden, Alabama. I knew her as Mother. She died on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, died in her sleep at age ninety-two, which is why I’m thinking about her in the holiday season. I hesitate to … Continue reading I Knew Her As Mother