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2008 brought changes for better or worse

Southern Ohio


Happy New Year, everyone! Christmas will only be a memory by the time The Mountain Eagle is published again.

To me, a new year is sometimes the continuation of the old. I make plans to change things, and the more I try to change the more they stay the same. Like the old saying, “The faster I go the be-hinder I get!”

There have been some changes in my life, for the better. I have gained more faith in God this past year.

Taking care of my little sidekick Bennie Wierderhold has taught me to watch my mouth, which sometimes needs to be washed out with soap, though I probably would only blow bubbles. Watching this child grow has been very rewarding, though tiresome at times.

Watching my son, Keith Ballard, going through the loss of a special friend, Kelly Payne, was one of the most painful things I have gone through. With prayer and help Keith has put his life back together. Kelly will be missed for a long time in our hearts and by her mother, Vickie Power, and her sister, Tina, and family.

Losing my close friend, Margie Kelly, who I had known for 37 years, was hard for me. Margie was not only a friend, she was like a mother though she never seemed old to me. She was someone you could share your most painful or happy moments with. She was there to listen and share, and you never had to worry about her telling someone else. How she always enjoyed a trip to the mountains of home I love so dearly.

I am thankful I have always been a strong-willed person., I don’t need drugs nor alcohol to rely on to get me through life. That statement isn’t exactly true, as it seems as if I do have to depend on blood pressure medicine as it won’t stay under control.

I am going to quit making plans ahead of time, as things never seem to go the way I plan. I had all intentions of spending a day getting the rest of my Christmas things out. No way, as my friend, Vickie Power, called having a bad day, asking if I would like to go somewhere to grab a bite to eat. We went to Frisch’s for the breakfast bar, too late as they were just closing. We went to another place here in Harrison. I went to the bathroom to wash my hands and that was the filthiest women’s bathroom sink I have ever seen. We left there as fast as we went in. We ended up having breakfast at Perkins which was very good.

I came home with good intentions to proceed with my house. Vickie called again wanting to know if I would go to Hyde Park with her. This, I must say, was a fun trip as we got lost. Actually we found Biggs Supermarket; it just was the wrong one. We did finally get to the right place and of course they were out of what she went to get, driving 40 miles one way. We had fun as only you women readers can relate too. I am sure you have been there, done that.

Vickie’s daughter called on the cell phone asking did we find Biggs. Vickie says, “Yes, Tina, I am looking at the building.” We didn’t know it was the wrong Biggs!

Willa Mae Boggs, now you can quit laughing and try to finish reading the column, Willa Mae always says she feels like I take her on my journeys when I write about them.

Vickie and I went to Clifton Mill, Yellow Springs, Ohio, to see the Christmas lights. Oh, that is something special to see. The main attraction is an old gristmill which is covered with lights, then there are red lights on both side of the creek bank and a huge strip of white lights that resemble a waterfall. You can hear the rippling of the creek and watch it flowing by the lights. There’s an old covered bridge that is lit up then a different light show. It is absolutely beautiful.

There’s a section that has a miniature replica of a drive-in movie, with die cast metal cars like back years ago, and a drivein restaurant with speakers. A small electric train runs through the center of the displays.

It was so bitter cold we stayed for a while then came home. Of course we picked the coldest time to go, as the weather has turned bitter cold. I thought I was dressed warm enough. I found I needed long johns as the frigid air went right through my slacks.

Mother Nature is sure sharing with us some strange weather. We had some severe freezing drizzle hit the Cincinnati area, and it moved right on to Harrison and surrounding areas. I was driving with little Bennie and the weather turned to freezing within a few minutes. Needless to say, it was a mess trying to get home. A telephone pole came too close to my car, in fact it was the other way around as my car started sliding towards a couple of poles. I prayed all the way home as I would glance back at my precious little sidekick in the back seat.

My brother, Richie, and Wanda Hall had some special visitors. Their three little grandsons, Clay, Chase and Chance Caudill of Hamilton, spent the night with them. Richie took the boys to see their Grandpa Caudill who is in the nursing home at Jenkins.

I talked to my newfound friend from the mountains, Bill Shepherd, and his wife, who live in Kettering, Ohio. It is as if I have known him all my life. This man had me laughing so hard during our conversation, it was a pleasure talking to him.

Bill and his wife had his only aunt, Ruby Jean (Hogg) Rowe who was born on Paices Branch(Paradise Valley) on Kingscreek, for Christmas dinner.

Ann and Johnny Calihan will be having their family for Christmas dinner.

All of Barefoot Bill and Betty Kelly’s family are doing well. They send their love to everyone back home.

Hello to my brother, Jerry, and Mattie Hall.

Well, I am extra tired so I better get this on its way.

Shirley Wells has been spending time with several members of her family for Christmas.

Gwen Farmer is trying to stay warm, and trying to keep her feet on solid ground.

Until next time: Rose Ballard, 9110 Lawrenceburg Road, Harrison, Ohio 45030, email: Bluegrassmama4@aol.com, 513-367-4682.


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