The Mountain Eagle
Whitesburg KY

Flowers coming up in southern Ohio

Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!

Would you believe there are buds on my lilac tree beside my window? My poppies are up about an inch. They are close to my front porch. There’s a small skiff of snow on the ground as I write this column.

January has come to an end, and for some reason it seems as if January has been a very long month for me. I think it rained half of January, not that I planned on going out too much anyway, then freezing rain.

February will be the same as it is a very dreary month too. I am tired of the cold weather.

Since I have been sick for so long, I’ve almost become a hermit as I’ve stayed home so much. I’ve almost lost interest in going anywhere. Notice I said “almost.”

After going to the Jamu ary event last Sunday, it made me realize how much I missed the interaction of being with friends and acquaintances.

Monday evening, Tony Hale & Black Water Band were scheduled to perform at Haddix Hall at Hunters Pizzeria. I sort of played with the idea of going during the day, as I wasn’t feeling up to par. Finally I decided to get dressed and go since I knew Les and Pat Wagner along with Becky and Polly Hasty were going to be there.

Rain was predicted, but it wasn’t doing anything in this area as I left home. As I got on the interstate it started raining, and by the time I got halfway to Middletown things changed drastically as it rained so hard, then fog appeared so thick I could barely see the white lines of the highway.

I really thought about getting off at an exit and heading back home. I just kept driving very slowly.

It was worth it once I arrived at Haddix Hall as Tony and the band did a great job, and being with Les, Pat, Becky and Polly again was wonderful.

My stomach begin burning as soon as I drank a little water, but I still managed a smile on my face trying to act, no, I can’t say normal. I really did enjoy the evening.

The drive back home was a lot more pleasant than getting there.

Les was busy talking and my stomach was hurting so bad. I didn’t want to interrupt Lasso, so I didn’t give him a hug before I left so that means I get two hugs when I see him again. Now you know I was really feeling bad not giving or getting a hug!

I get told by so many how good I look. Well, I will tell you looks can be deceiving. I am a lot smaller in size than I have been in several years. However if you look into my eyes, there’s no shine any more, and my complexion has a paleness to it. I have lost so much of my hair there’s no luster to it.

I am very thankful the medicine that I am on has controlled the nausea so I am able to go out in public without having to carry a small bag with me.

Southern Ohio

Unless someone has walked in my shoes or suffered the agony that I have endured, well there’s no use for me trying to explain.

December a year ago I really didn’t think I would live, and to be honest there are times I prayed for God to just call me out of the pain.

When I hear someone say things about someone who doesn’t have an illness that is visible on the outside, it hurts me because we don’t know how someone else feels.

I have a handicap sticker hanging in my car that I use occasionally. I am waiting for the time someone will say something to me. My mouth may get me in trouble.

I am finally getting used to the idea I will never be able to enjoy the food that I crave, and to be grateful for what I can eat or drink without getting so sick.

For those of you who enjoy good music on the computer you will be in for a nice surprise as there’s a new DJ on Jack Adams, who is the banjo picker for Sunrise Ridge Band, has a radio show. This week Jack’s schedule is Wednesday and Friday at 8 p.m. and Sunday 10 a.m. Jack will play music then a church service.

Now the surprise is that Jack did a wonderful job speaking on the show, he did a wonderful job. As most know Jack is a very quiet young man. If anyone needs any info, get in touch with Jack Adams on Facebook.

Those of you who get The Mountain Eagle on Wednesday, don’t forget to turn your computer on as Jack really has some good music.

Jack’s mother Beverly and I are first cousins, and she would be so proud of this young man. I couldn’t be more proud of Jack if he was my own son. I would love and support him without us being related to each other. That is just icing on the cake.

Jack is attending school at Hazard under Dean Osborne. In case anyone is interested, Jack is also giving banjo lessons. I wish I lived close enough. I would see if he would teach an old woman a few chords on the guitar before my hands are folded for the last time.

As much as I love dancing I am going to give it up for good. Years ago I found two words, accept and adapt. I may as well accept the fact my legs are weak and I am afraid of falling.

Then I have to somehow let my heart and soul adapt to the fact that I have left footprints and memories of knowing I enjoyed dancing. I didn’t try to do a body shaking boogie-woogie, as my feet did my talking.

Carcassonne Community Center will be having its first square dance the second Saturday in March. I was hoping that I could attend, but plans have a way of not working out.

Mike and Marcia Caudill are such wonderful dancers. I would love to get in a set with them to see if I could go through a complete set without messing up.

My ex-husband and I used to square dance Modern and Western style. No matter what I had on my mind, when we hit the dance floor it was like the commercial that used to be, “Calgon take me away,” as every worry left my shoulders.

In an upstairs closet I still have a few skirts I made, along with a couple of crinolines that I wore. I think I still have a checked dress someplace.

We received badges for dancing in different places. I still have the badges, too, from back in the ‘80’s.

Lots of times, my ex-husband would wear shirts of a solid color to match whatever attire I wore. I couldn’t afford the fancy dresses that lots of the women wore, so I improvised. I bought material, measured about 6 inches above my knee, and then cut a wide piece for a ruffle and a small strip for a waistband.

I then sat down to a sewing machine with a matching crinoline and a matching blouse, and I felt nice. I always had a good pair of shoes that I felt comfortable in.

There were times my exhusband and I would be in an argument over dancing, but I would forget whatever it was that made me aggravated.

When I was at Carcassonne in November and I danced a set of square dancing, and it has put the longing back in my soul. However like I said earlier, plans don’t always come true.

I am glad that Mike and Marcia Caudill will make sure that Carcassonne Community will strive under their direction. I don’t know why this place has left such a wonderful feeling in my heart.

It is a shame the old school at Mill Branch couldn’t have been saved and used for something.

As I wrote the last sentence I realized it’s not the people that mean as much to me as the places do!

I hardly know anyone who lives in Roxana as all the older ones are gone. I am a stranger at Carcassonne except for Mike and Marcia, but if I ever go again I will not volunteer anymore and that is a fact.

Les and Pat are sort of under the weather as there’s a bug going around. I love these two, but they can keep it as I don’t want it.

There’s a new addition connected to the Wagner clan, a new baby born in the mountains. Please keep the family in your prayers as the baby, little Kooper, is having difficulties. At the present time the baby is in a Lexington hospital.

I received a very nice letter from Connie Blair of Jeremiah. Connie is a former postmistress at Jeremiah Post Office who knew Mom and the family.

Connie sent me a recipe for a stack cake that I am sure is similar to what mother made. As I said, Mom didn’t use molasses in her stack cake. I can see the stacks so plain in my memory, and can smell the aroma while she baked muffins when I was small.

Now if I can figure out how my grandmother Betty Barton made white ginger biscuits! I know they looked like regular biscuits with a taste of ginger and were sweet. After they were baked, she would take a white rag, dip it into egg whites and rub it on the hot biscuits, which would make a glaze.

I wish I could call back the years as I would sure write down things as I know they are lost forever.

Someone destroyed the pictures of Mom Barton after my uncle Charles Barton went to the Letcher Manor Nursing Home.

Oma Hatton, I enjoy your column very much. I hope you can continue writing for a long time.

When I first started writing for The Eagle I had to hand write and mail my column in. I didn’t have a computer nor did I want one. I can’t type worth a darn now, except hunt and peck.

You mentioned Elsie Banks. I remember her, and always enjoyed reading her column.

I remember when my little mountain mama Alma Whitaker used to write the news from Kingscreek.

Saturday evening, my daughter Kay Gray, along with her husband Clarence and a few others attended a Garth Brooks concert in Cincinnati. Kay said it was an awesome show.

Tony Hale, the bandleader of Black Water Band, along with his wife and another couple, all attended the Garth Brook concert too. Tony and his group enjoyed the concert immensely. I could not be as thrilled to see any big name entertainer any more than I enjoy sitting in an audience listening to Tony Hale and his band. I feel the same way about Ma Crow & The Lady Slippers.

When I am in the mountains I would travel far and near to see and hear Sunrise Ridge and Will Caudill & Rt. 7 Band.

If only people wouldn’t talk so loud that you can’t hear the music or dance right in front of the stage so you can’t see the band. Sometimes it’s like a wall so high you can’t see over it, and so wide you can’t see around it, especially if you are little like me.

Well, time waits for no one, so until next time. Rose Ballard, 9110 Lawrenceburg Rd., Harrison, Ohio 45030.

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