Saturday, October 19, 2013

Party Over Here...Party Over There: A Reunion

Arthur kept asking all morning, "Is it time yet?"

Arthur knew there was going to be major party action today in Shaker Heights...

A Corgi convention...

I felt like I was in an illustration from a Tasha Tudor children's book like Corgiville...but it was a PARTY!!!!!

Dr. David Newmarker, a dentist and Arthur's breeder...invited all of the pups, i.e. Arthur and his siblings, to celebrate their first birthday together...

With an amazing spread...

Each dog had his/her own goodie bag attached...

to a mylar balloon...

and each doggy got a blanket, too!

And a cake with all their names on it...

but none of the pups knew how to blow out the candles.  But the pups were the stars of the show...

Dana, Isa, Oliver, Kevin, Dorothy, Muffin, and Arthur...

Isa was the only tri-color of the litter...

And Oliver, in my opinion, looks the most like Arthur...

And then they were one...and Arthur and all had a GREAT time!  And so did I!

Friday, October 18, 2013

Hangin' Out with the Family Tree - A Friday Find

One of the most rewarding things about doing genealogy is finding...and if you're lucky...meeting in person family you never know you had!  What a find family!

This top photograph is of my great-grandmother, Margaret Jane Gordon Kelley, and my grandmother, Dora Frances Kelley.  My great-grandmother was one of ten siblings.  She married later in life and had only one daughter.

Looking at photos of her and her family, I craved to know her (and them).  They looked close and had mutual affection.  But my father and grandmother are could I learn more?

Here is a photograph with her (left), with her brother (my great-grand uncle), William Wayne Gordon, and her sister (my great-grand aunt), Mary Gordon Bush in the 1920s.  My impression of her brother was that he was quite a colorful, light-hearted farmer with a strong faith and a kind heart.

Because of Facebook and a series of random events, I was able to meet three of his grandchildren while in West Virginia.

Sylvia, William Wayne, and Joan...and they oozed of looks similar to the Gordon photos of family long gone that were in my possession.  They were funny and spry and delightful.

And the cruise director of this gathering is my newly met third cousin (William Wayne Gordon's great-granddaughter), Sondra Gordon Nasseri, and her husband, Kuzum Nasseri.  What a hoot!  We had a wonderful lunch at Lightburn's at Stonewall Jackson Resort.  The guys went cruising on the boat...while we women pored over family photos in each other's possession...while planning to get together again...swapping stories...and embracing family.

So grateful for this find!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

And Then He Was ONE!!!!

Well today my lovely Arthur turned 1!!!!  He has brought such joy into our lives!  So, we gave him a few bites of a cupcake...and called him "birthday boy"...and Saturday we have a party in Cleveland with Arthur's breeder, his mother, his grandmother, and his great-grandmother...along with his six siblings...four of which went to other good we will get to meet other Corgi parents!

Film at to come.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Confessions of a Drive-By Clicker - Texture Tuesday

Another Texture Tuesday with Kim...

I have a confession.  I'm Denise F. and I'm a drive-by clicker.  It drives Edster crazy.  We will be cruising and I'll see something, quickly framing it in my mind, then saying, "Stop!" as we have almost always already driven by...and my shutter finger is quivering in excitement.

Cruising through the backroads of West Virginia last week...I saw this house...framed it in my head...and after passing it...STOP!  Edster goes in reverse (hoping no cars are coming behind us).

How could I pass this old house up?  It so reminds me of the house in the movie, The Notebook. You know...the house Noah purchases and restores to forget that Allie is no longer available.  But that's not the end of the story...

If you haven't seen should!  No spoilers here!

I did some edits and added Kim's texture, appreciate, for this photo.

Are you a drive by clicker???

Sunday, October 13, 2013

A Stroll Through Thomas - Part 1

Writing from my favorite chair...  Who would have thought one would need to recover from vacation?  I'm not sure what I've done to myself, but I've been dealing with sacroiliac joint dysfunction for over four days on Alleve and sitting on a heating pad. So...let me reflect on part of our day in Thomas...

Thomas is a tiny town, population: 567, nestled in the area of Blackwater Falls State Park and the gateway into the Canaan Valley.

Oh my...a quaint coffee shop called Tip Top...which their website says is an adjective that means of the very best quality.

And I could hardly pass it up after seeing this temptress...

So we stopped in.  A man was walking out with one to go cup saying, "You better have your checkbook."  Dude...I'm not looking for a cup of coffee I pour myself from a gas station convenient store...

The aroma...the ambiance...seeing Kimberly hand washing dishes...  Kimberly is a transplant from Portland and could not have been nicer.

I'll have a Latte, please...

A cup of joy individually made and served by Kimberly...mmm, heaven!  Edster had an Americano.

The place is filled with coffee and artisan chocolates for purchase to take home.

And mugs with this nostalgic, vintage feel with their logo...

And although I did not partake...tons of goodies and pastries were ever so tempting.

The whole experience is true to their name...of the very best quality!

So, if you are ever nearby...stop in.  And of course, you can always find them on Facebook!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Meet Mattie - A Friday Find

What is SO not to love about this wonderful creature.  I'm linking up with Kim Klassen today with her weekly Friday Finds.  And check out what we found in Thomas, West Virginia!

Mattie is an AKC purebred bloodhound...a gentle giant of four years of age.  Mattie loves to run and follow fact, bloodhounds have been known to follow and track something with so much tenacity that they forget to meet their physical needs of rest, food, and water...sometimes running themselves to death.

Mattie has four girlfriends...quite the playboy!  They are all purebred bloodhounds as well who have given him many children.  But Mattie has his morals.  No shacking up for him.

He lives with his caretaker, Barry,...a local, salt of the earth mountain man who has a long history in the mines of West Virginia.

Barry chatted with us quite a long time while we ooh-ed and ahhh-ed over his fine furry fellow.

And he told us about a backroad, off-the-beaten path way along an old rail bed to find this little gem.

Locals are ALWAYS the best.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Faith of My Father

There are many things I love about West Virginia...any season...  One of the things that have always charmed me about West Virginia are their churches...

Little, white wooden churches with simple names...dotting the hillsides on old country roads...

with wooden pews, people still singing out of hymnals--no megachurches here with flashy, audio-visual displays.

And the church is the pillar of the community...the center of  community life.

Four years ago today, I woke up for the first time without my father in this world.  This is him being baptized by his minister and a visiting evangelist.

I miss him every day...but his faith that he lived daily, continues to live in me...all because of this (the actual church) country church of my father.

There's a little mountain church in my thoughts of yesterday
Where friends and family gathered for the Lord
There and old fashioned preacher taught the straight and narrow way
For what few coins the congregation could afford
Dressed in all out Sunday best we sat on pews of solid oak
And I remember how our voices filled the air
How mama sounded like an angel on those high soprano notes
And when the roll is called up yonder I'll be there.
   Looking back now that little mountain church house
   Has become my life's corner stone
   It was there in that little mountain church house
   I first heard the word I've based my life upon