Whitesburg KY
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I received my first Christmas card for this year

Southern Ohio

Photographed at the band state championship are the members of the National Semi Finalist third place Marching Tigers. Rose Ballard says, “We are so proud of you. Two of my granddaughters Jessica and Katelyn Nottingham are in the Beechwood Marching Tigers Band. They competed in Indianapolis, Ind. Friday and Saturday.”

Photographed at the band state championship are the members of the National Semi Finalist third place Marching Tigers. Rose Ballard says, “We are so proud of you. Two of my granddaughters Jessica and Katelyn Nottingham are in the Beechwood Marching Tigers Band. They competed in Indianapolis, Ind. Friday and Saturday.”

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I’m sure by now most of you have already gotten the main staples for your Thanksgiving meal, unless you are like me, as I seem to forget something and have to run back to the store the last-minute.

I haven’t really made up my mind, whether to cook or not.

My son Keith Ballard volunteers to help serve meals at a church here locally. He offers to bring food to me, but I decline the offer.

With my stomach issues I have missed a lot of good food. There are times I can attend an event and take yogurt, etc., and be satisfied. I don’t think I could manage this at a Thanksgiving meal, so I will stay home.

I’ve spent so many Thanksgivings and Christmases alone that it really doesn’t bother me anymore. I wasn’t invited to my children’s home when their dad was alive, so I am not interested in going now. I will probably fix Thanksgiving dinner for Keith as he can have it later.

My memory seems to have failed me, as I simply forgot someone’s birthday.

Belated happy birthday to Hayward Day. Not only did I forget his birthday, I’ve neglected to call to check up on Hayward. The only thing I don’t seem to forget to do is head for the mountains of eastern Kentucky that I love, especially when there’s music and a square dance, which makes no sense at all, as I haven’t been able to dance in five months.

Saturday afternoon, Vickie Power and I went to see Hayward. Oh my goodness, Hayward looks wonderful. Hayward is walking with the help of a cane, however I bet there are times he is walking without it.

If you want to see a miracle, all you have to do is look at this man. God has been so good to bring him through what I personally observed a couple of days after he became ill.

When you walk into Hayward’s home, you are surrounded with love; it is as if Vivian is there. The pictures on the wall and the warmth that you know that was shared by an honest-to-goodness home.

Hayward’s sons are so good to him. There’s a monitor that will detect if Hayward needs anything.

Hayward, Vivian and their daughter Kim, became like family to me when I met them. Vivian is a sister to Ann Calihan, my other extended family member. Johnny and Ann will always be as much part of my life as my immediate family.

Ann hasn’t been feeling very well, as she has a virus.

Johnny is amazing, as he doesn’t seem to change any at all although he has slowed down a little. Johnny and Ann were able to visit Hayward.

Sunday was a very busy day for Vicki and me, as we ventured to the Community Arts Center in Oxford, where the movie Mountain Minor was premiered.

We have seen Mountain Minor in a private showing at Dale’s home along with about 20 others. I’ve seen it on big screen at The Esquire Theater in Cincinnati, but I must say the showing at Community Arts Center was amazing as the ambiance of the audience was overwhelming.

It was a sold-out crowd, and I really can’t explain the feeling as I sat in a room full of strangers, with the exception of a very few I recognized. Warren and Judy Waldron, along with Amy Cogan and joined by Dale Farmer, did about an hour of beautiful music before the show.

There was a short question and answer after the show. I asked Dale why he picked Mt. Olivet Church in Blackey. Dale did research, as he wanted the old-time way of singing, so he got in touch with Elwood Cornett.

No one in church or anyone else knew they were going to be filmed. I didn’t know until I read the end of the movie that was shown at the Esquire Theater. It holds a special place in my heart, as that is where my dad’s visitation was held 38 years ago.

The movie and the musicians received a standing ovation at the end.

Vickie and I left early as we had made plans to go to Leo’s Coffee House in Norwood, Ohio to see a couple of musicians who were doing a first-time appearance together. One of them was Marvin Davis, who ranks among one the greatest musicians that I have ever listened to.

Marvin is a multi-talented musician, and has picked with several bands. Years ago Marvin was with a band called The Kentucky Gentlemen. I have known and admired Marvin for many years, along with Trina Emig, who is also a very multi-talented musician.

Trina Emig is widely known for her banjo playing, but that isn’t the only instrument that she is good at. Trina was influential in the group Ma Crow and the Lady Slippers for several years. Trina now performs in several bands.

Marvin Davis and Trina Emig, along with two others, are starting a band called Mustang Sally and Saw Dog.,Yes, if my health permits I will be in the audience. Marvin and Trina did a marvelous performance together.

It has been a couple of years since I’ve had the pleasure to see Marvin or Trina.

Vickie and I had gone to Leo’s Coffee House a few years ago to see Ma Crow and the Lady Slippers. Time and darkness change everything for me. Keith fixed his extra smart phone for directions on how to get there, which was different than what I got from Map Quest.

We had no trouble finding the place until we got into the parking lot, then the GPS said, “You have reached your destination, walk the rest of the way!”

There was a problem as we could not find the building with the address. Finally Vickie saw it on the side of a red building in huge letters. As written before we really enjoyed the show.

Now getting back home was sort of hectic as it was so dark we couldn’t see the street signs. Neither of us knew how to set GPS, and then we discovered Keith’s phone was in a dead area.

I knew that 71 S. would bring us back to Cincinnati, so I stopped at a Marathon Station for directions, to no avail. The man asked if I have a cell phone why didn’t I use GPS. To be honest I wanted to ask him why he didn’t know enough to help me.

I called Keith from my little flip phone, but he couldn’t help me as I had no address to tell him where we were. As I walked back to the car Vicki figured out to pull up direction to her daughter’s, then somehow she put in her address and we were on our way, or so we thought.

I passed the exit to the right and had to travel, which took me downtown Cincinnati, and again couldn’t see street signs. What would have taken us half an hour coming back took us over an hour.

I was about a half mile from Vickie’s when Keith called to see if we were alright. I laughed and said yes, if I didn’t get lost coming on to the house. Vickie lives about a mile from me.

To be honest Vicki and I laughed the whole blasted way home, even though we were lost at times. It is the first time we’ve been out together in a long time. To heck with me trying using a GPS.

Keith’s service wasn’t strong enough to pick up in certain areas. The same way with my cell phone is when I get out of Lexington, I have no service except texting.

Les and Pat Wagner enjoyed a few days in the Smokies to celebrate their anniversary. It was a great time except for being very cold.

Pat may turn into a chicken as that is about the only thing that she is allowed to eat with her health issues, and Les is still having problems also. I wish them the best of health soon.

I received my first Christmas card from Buddy and Bernice Grubb. Thanks so much, it was such a beautiful card. I will be getting a few cards ready to send before long.

I see on the computer that several have their Christmas tree up, decorations in every room, along with the table set. I don’t put a tree up until Thanksgiving is over. Of course it is the end of January before I take it down.

I am still thinking of the wonderful times the Whitaker family have together. Oh how I envy this family.

When I am in the mountains I always make it a point to stop at Golden Apple. Of course my checking account is quite a bit less before I leave. Carol is always so pleasant to talk to. I have always enjoyed going there.

This time I found out the young man who is always so nice has a connection to Johnny and Ann Calihan. It just so happens that we know so many of the same people. We exchanged names to connect on Facebook, somehow the card with my name was put in a bag that with something I had purchased.

Regardless, it was nice talking with you and reliving things from my childhood of growing up at Roxana and going to school with Genita Cornett. I wish you and Carol a very happy Thanksgiving and I will be back in the spring, if God is willing.

Beechwood Marching Tigers band won the championship, then advanced to state championship at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Ind., Friday and Saturday. Two of my granddaughters, Jessica and Katelyn, perform in Beechwood Marching Tigers band. Congratulations to Beechwood Marching Band who was in third place. This is an end of an era, as Jessica graduates from high school.

Scott and Anna Nottingham, along with Kyle, spent the weekend in Indianapolis. Had I known in time, I would have tried to go since this is the last year for Jessica.

I even thought about trying to drive there, I knew in my heart I wasn’t able to be on my feet walking that much and letting my ankle hang down all day for two days. Not only that, I’ve taken another bad fall this week.

Wendell Whitaker, I can still hear you saying to me how great I looked to be in so much pain. Oh honey, if you only knew. I am not going to just sit in my recliner waiting for God to call me out of this world, although at times the pain does almost get unbearable in my shoulders since they are bone rubbing against bone, my wrist aching, my ankle not letting me keep my balance, and not being able to digest food.

There are times I am so hungry that I could eat a horse if it came my way. Then somehow I remember there’s others that is in worse condition.

So many times I carry a small bag beside me, in case I become nauseated while driving. However I am not ready to give up.

Give your family an extra hug. Your friends also, just leave your friend’s husband or wife alone

Well, time is slipping away.

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

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