Whitesburg KY

First Christmas tree was beautiful sight

Southern Ohio

Ho, ho, ho, everyone!

Have you got your holiday plans made, your Christmas tree up and decorated?

This time of year always takes me back once more to my childhood in the mountains of eastern Kentucky.

I really don’t remember too many people having a Christmas tree, but I know we never had one until I was about 11 years old. My cousin, Bessie Jane Gibson, and I went up in Green Briar Hollow — it was called ‘holler’ — and cut down a tree. The snow was so deep I fell over a rock or something and busted my nose. Well, that didn’t stop me as Bessie Jane and I were determined to get that tree home.

I had helped Martha Mitchell with some housework and she paid me a whole dollar. I bought a string of lights and a box of icicles at Jr. and Bernice Adams’s store, and we put the tree in a coal bucket. Gosh, I thought that was the most beautiful sight my eyes had ever seen.

I think I may bypass a tree, as my little sidekick Bennie Wiederhold will probably be climbing in it or taking off the ornaments. I don’t have a cage to put the tree in, and nope I didn’t say put little Bennie in a cage. He is like his Mammaw Rose, he couldn’t stand to be caged up!

I just put my tree up and so far he hasn’t tried to climb in it, though he touches the little bulbs. He doesn’t understand why he can’t reach the window to see his mommy when she comes to pick him up at night. After I fed him supper, I peeled a Red Delicious apple for him, and, oh, the smell of that apple brought Christmas once again. Daddy would get a box of Delicious apples every year for Christmas.

I took little Bennie to see Santa Claus, and I must say he wasn’t a happy camper. He started to fuss and as Santa was trying to soothe him, Bennie said, “I’m stuck!” I thought Santa was going to drop Bennie he was laughing so hard. When Bennie gets in a tight place he always says “I’m stuck!”

I was in the kitchen, Bennie came in to join me, he looks at me and says, “Hi, Cutie!” That is why I try so hard not to say any bad words, I do not want him repeating, and believe me he just has to hear something one time. My daughter, Angie Wiederhold, said she mumbled something under her breath about something on television, and she heard this little voice say just what she had said.

I am still waiting for someone to write me saying they are tired of hearing about this little stinker!

For the past several weeks I have trouble with this computer. I write the newsletter for Old Time Fiddlers each month, and it wasn’t bad enough that the computer went down after it was fixed, the printer wouldn’t connect. I was at the end of the deadline, and I didn’t realize something was wrong with the printer. Angie has a new computer with no ink, and my son has a Dell computer that I know nothing about. I finally got into Microsoft Works and Word Processor, and couldn’t make it type. I called my friend, Linda Hollan, and her son hadn’t installed the printer correctly on her computer, so no luck there!

Linda said the library had computers, so that is where I went to write one letter, but would you believe their copy machine was down! I went to Small’s Pro Hardware, and two very nice guys made me 60 copies. So after all the aggravation I finally got everything together. Of course then I had to address several of the 60 with handwritten return addresses.

The wind damage to my house is almost finished, probably all that will ever get done. I came home and caught some guys putting my shingles on without felt under the shingles! They knew that felt was supposed to be put under the shingles, and they tried using my old vent covers, when the insurance called for two new ones! It has been a complete nightmare.

Little Bennie and I stopped at Kroger’s and we got a surprise as Ann Calihan was in Kroger’s spending her money.

Johnny and Ann’s daughter, Sue Wagoner, slipped on the ice and received a good shaking up. Sue was very sore for a few days. I am glad she wasn’t hurt more seriously than she was.

Sue and my daughter, Angie Wiederhold, have been lifelong friends and they both chose the profession to become a nurse!

My sympathy goes to my friend, Linda Hollan, and family in the death of her sister, Violet, who lives in Arkansas. Linda and her brother and several sisters had gone to visit Violet and her family around Thanksgiving. Losing a loved one is hard enough and the holidays make it worse.

Now to a much happier note. Shirley Wells really enjoyed having her grandson, Tyler, visiting her for the weekend. Shirley took him shopping. This makes the fourth time they have gone shopping together at Christmas, so they are following a family tradition. Shirley usually takes the grandkids to spend time on the Cumberland River there at Clarksville, Tenn. I got a sneak preview on the computer, and it is beautiful.

Gwen Huff Farmer’s son, Glen Farmer, and his wife, Marilyn, went to visit their son, Jamie Farmer, for the weekend. Gwen is looking forward to a visit with her son, John, and his wife, and son Grant. Gwen really doesn’t know what to do with herself without the garden to work in.

My brother, Richie Hall, and Wanda are all decorated at their house for Christmas. Richie is afraid to leave his pants off for too long, afraid that Wanda will decorate them too. They send season greetings to Derringer Adams from all the Hall family.

Well, it seems as if I hit the wrong button with a little help and sent the column to The Mountain. Eagle early, so I am going to get off here and head for bed.

I want to say thanks to Sadie Ison for the lovely card she sent me. Thanks to Arlyn and Clarence Halcomb also.

I received a call from a good looking guy from Mill Branch, Doyle Day, too bad his wife was right there too! Doyle and Merlene Davis Day are very active with history and genealogy.

If anyone knows who the person that is buried in the cemetery at Hassle Stamper’s, close to where my Uncle Lee Hall, Aunt Tena and Aunt Victoria Whitaker are buried, please contact Doyle and Merlene Day.

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

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