Whitesburg KY
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Funerals have changed over the years


GARDENER — Grayson Holbrook had a bumper crop of watermelons that she grew in G’s Garden. She enjoyed sharing them with family, friends the Hemphill Community Center, neighbors and the students and staff of Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College, where she attends classes in Whitesburg.

GARDENER — Grayson Holbrook had a bumper crop of watermelons that she grew in G’s Garden. She enjoyed sharing them with family, friends the Hemphill Community Center, neighbors and the students and staff of Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College, where she attends classes in Whitesburg.

Hello again everyone! Whew, have you got out your long johns? In the Ohio Valley area the temperature dropped from 90 degrees to raining and cold overnight. You really need a heavy jacket.

I thought about turning the heat on to take the chill out of the house.

For the past week my life has been turned upside down, crossways and in a circle, or so it seems. I feel like I have been on a merry go-round, Ferris wheel and any other ride you can mention.

My window air conditioner has been acting up for some time and it finally bit the dust, so to speak. You can’t go to a store to purchase an air conditioner, you have to order online as they are trying to get rid of summer things and getting ready for cold weather.

My son Keith Ballard checked at two different places, to no avail. So I decided to try my luck. Finally I gave in and let the salesman place an order for me. It will not be ready for pickup for a week. Which will be Friday.

Now we are having a week of temperatures in the 90’s. At the present time as I sit at this computer, the thermostat says its 86 in my living room. I have a fan going and it is fine as long as I sit in front of it.

Southern Ohio

Another severe storm hit this area, and as if I haven’t gotten enough to push me over the edge, lightning hit my computer, messing up several electrical outlets. Again I went to a business to purchase a computer, and none is available in the store. I was told I could get on my computer and order online.

I looked at the salesman and quietly replied that if I had a computer I wouldn’t be here. I left before I said something I would regret. Not everyone has a computer to place an order.

I went to another business and they had two computers in stock so I purchased one though it is not what I want. It is probably going back.

Not only did it get my computer, it has damaged the modem and with it being a holiday, of course nothing is open.

Saturday, I got a notice that the air conditioner was in, but instead of calling, I got an email. When I didn’t think anything else could happen, well it did.

I picked up the air conditioner and the box was damaged. I told the man that loaded it in my car, that the box looked like it had been through a war zone. So help me, something was telling me not to bring it home. I didn’t listen to my instinct, brought it home, when my son Keith Ballard opened it, the air conditioner was damaged, so he returned it.

At first we decided to leave it in the box until next spring when we needed it, but Keith said maybe he better check in case it was damaged. Oh well, we are going to finish the fall out with the small one. It won’t be long before we will have the furnace on.

For some time a very dear friend has been in and out of the hospital and nursing homes. I’ve known her over 15 years and she was more than a friend. She was a sister to me, even closer. Vicki Power and I went to see her last Sunday, and I made plans to go back this week.

I started having health issues long ago plus everything else going on and I waited too late, as I was planning on going to visit her Sunday afternoon. Sunday morning I received a phone call saying that she had taken her last voyage. Needless to say, my heart is broken, and I am hurting to the pit of my soul.

I will miss the time that we spent together laughing and talking, sharing things as close friends do.

Yes, over the years I’ve lost several friends that I had known 20 and 30 years. I feel as if I have lost a part of me. So when you think you have problems, someone else has more than you do.

As I said, I will miss her but the agony and suffering that I’ve seen her go through is over, and I know she is isn’t hurting anymore. My heart breaks for her family.

My deepest sympathy goes to Doyle Ison’s two sons Mike and Randy, and their families, along with Bessie Shepherd of Whitesburg, a brother, Billy of Ohio, and a sister, Bonnie of Maryland, in the loss of Betty Hamilton Ison.

While sitting at the funeral, as I tried to hold back the flow of tears, my thoughts traveled back in time of growing up once again in the mountains. How things have changed down through the years. I can remember when there was a death, you kept your loved one at home and people came to sit up with the dead, I think two or three days and nights.

People would bring food to share, later it was having your loved one at a church, people still stayed for a couple of days and nights. Finally it was visitation at a funeral home, and I can remember that wasn’t liked for a while.

No sitting up days and nights, as it is a few hours and the next day was the burial, but now it is done in one day.

Again, there’s difference as in the years past, back then you had family members or someone to dig a grave, as you stayed until the last shovel of dirt was thrown over. Now the grave is dug at a price, and you leave after a short service.

In the mountains for each of my parents and siblings that are buried at Coots Cemetery, someone was kind enough to dig their graves by hand. I think some of the inmates from Letcher County Jail helped do this task. Time changes everything and moves on with progress in some situations.

While thinking of the way things were as a child many things came back in my thoughts. I went back to the times that my friend and I would talk about, growing up in the eastern Kentucky mountains.

We didn’t know what peanut butter and jelly sandwiches were, nor grilled cheese, hot dogs, potpies or tuna fish. We did have home-cooked meals of soup beans, fried potatoes, cornbread, and some kind of meat. The only time we had store bought bread, which was called light bread, was used for Daddy’s lunch.

Belated happy birthday to my granddaughter Jodi Gray on Sept. 10. Jodi is getting married Sept. 15, and I can’t find joy in my heart like I should for this precious granddaughter of mine.

I’ve gone through too much sadness. I know Jodi and Carl will be happy and it will be a beautiful wedding

I mentioned before Jodi is having 15 bridesmaids. Her parents are helping with the wedding, and the catering alone costs as much as my car.

Now just remember I can’t enjoy the delicious food.

To be honest, I sort of dread the wedding, and wish she had let me be just a normal person, but oh no, she wants me to wear a beautiful dress and she is having a makeup artist and a hair stylist to do everyone’s hair, and that includes me.

Jodi informed me that the girls have appointments to get their hair and makeup done and she will let me know what time for me to be there. Not only that, she has purchased flannel shirts for all of us to wear, while we are getting turned into beauty queens.

That means we have to get dressed at her house. Now that is where I draw the line, I am not changing clothes in front of house full of strangers.

I have not one or two but three dresses to choose from. I have a problem though, I can’t find a pair of shoes, I want. I don’t want white shoes, and it is impossible to find a size five shoe in a blasted shoe store, nor have I had luck on the computer either.

Jodi found a pair at JC Penney and wanted to buy them. Now wait a minute, I don’t want a pair of shoes that I’ve never seen nor tried on so I am going to go look as quick as the store opens.

I still haven’t talked to Les and Pat Wagner so I hope they are both doing all right.

Johnny and Ann Calihan are hanging on. Johnny raised a mini garden compared to what he usually has. The squirrels are glad that he was able, and he shared with them. Their daughter Sue Wagner is in a lot of pain with her fractured shoulder as the doctor can’t do anything for her.

I am sorry there was no column last week, I had no computer as I stated before.

I was told that a computer is evil. Well maybe, but I miss my computer when I don’t have one, as I use it for my column and to print Old Time Fiddlers newsletter each month.

I’ve also been told that I can save money by cancelling my Direct satellite. Well yes, I can, but I enjoy a few channels. I am not able to go to much anymore, and as long as I can afford it I will just keep on living my life and doing what I please.

Letcher County Day at Harrison on Sept. 29, from 12-?, at the Community Center, 300 George St., Harrison, Ohio 45030. Please bring covered dish and beverage. For more information call 513-526-8512.

Until next time, Rose Ballard, 9110 Lawrenceburg Rd., Harrison, Ohio 45030 email: Bluegrassmama4@aol.com.

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