Whitesburg KY
Partly cloudy
Partly cloudy

Looks like we’re going to have an early fall

Southern Ohio

Hello friends everywhere!

What do you want to bet we have an early fall? Summer has been here with a vengeance though it sure doesn’t seem we’ve had a long hot summer. The weather in our area is sort of cool at night and in the wee hours of the morning.

With August halfway over already, this year sure has gone fast for me. I have heard a phrase “my how time flies when you are having fun.” Evidently I must of had a lot of fun and not known it.

Despite all the heartaches and disappointments, I must say life is good as I am able to get around and do the things I need to do. It just might take me a little longer to get it done!

I can still drive, though my vision isn’t what it was when I was younger. I get to where I want to go, but the last trip took me quite a bit longer to get from Harrison, Ohio to Hyden, Ky. — about 10 hours. Well actually it was from Lexington to Hyden, with a six-hour camping trip in the middle. I did get to the Osborne Brothers’ Bluegrass Festival and had a great time for two days.

My brother Richie Hall and his wife Wanda stopped to visit me for a couple of hours. It is always a pleasure to have them here. Richie knows I can’t make coffee, but at least this time I was out of coffee and didn’t have to worry.

If you think I am strange for not knowing how to fix coffee, well Polly Maucher has never even drank a cup. I do drink coffee, I just don’t have a habit. But oh how I love to smell it brewing. I used to go by the coffee grinder at our local A&P grocery store just to smell when people were grinding a brand called 8 o’clock coffee. Mommy and Dad always used JFG.

Frieda Boggs Johnson sure made my memory go back in time as we were chatting on the website called Facebook and she mentioned having a “talking machine.” I think the proper name is a Victrola. My grandma Rosa Hall had one when I was little. You had to crank them up to play 78 r.p.m. records. Oh how I wish I had one, along with the old kitchen cabinets with the flour sifter in it. I would get a cabinet, but I have no place for it. If I could afford one I would make room for it and the old icebox of bygone years.

I used to want a curved glass china cabinet and the old crank telephone, and now I have both of them. Actually I have been made fun of because I like the old type of furniture.

Sometimes I think I was born 100 years too late for my time, as I wish I had lived in the days of yesteryear. Although times were hard back then there were no drugs to kill our young and destroy the lives of the older generation, too, as there are now.

Today has been a sad day for me, as I am sure it has been for Carl Boggs and his family. Unless I have my days mixed up I believe my special friend Willamae Boggs has been gone a year.

I knew Willamae for only a short time, but we both felt as if we had known each other a lifetime. And I can say we crowded a lifetime in that short time.

Not a day goes by that I don’t think of our brother Wallace Lee Hall, though I never talked to him on the phone. It is just knowing he isn’t there. I am still getting such beautiful cards from lots of people. Thank you everyone.

Several have mentioned how good Wallace Lee was in arithmetic. Brenda Dotson of Michigan, thank you so much for your kind words. Brenda went to school with Wallace Lee. I hear Kenneth Roark who lives in Florida also knew Wallace Lee from Roxana.

I talked to my sister Loretta Church who is in Letcher Manor Nursing Home. She said a few from Letcher Manor went to see the Smurf movie and that she really enjoyed it.

I am pleased to tell you about two grandparents who are proud as peacocks of their grandson’s accomplishment. Ryan K. Ison has been accepted into the Indiana University Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine. He will receive his Bachelor of Science Degree in Cytotechnology in August 2012.

Ryan is a son of Randy and Sheryl Ison and a grandson of Doyle and Betty Ison. He is a very quiet young man who chooses to work behind the scenes instead of being in the public. I wish this lad the best of everything in his career. Doyle and Betty have four handsome grandsons — Travis, Ryan, Tyler and Adam — and a beautiful granddaughter, Jenna.

All of their grandsons are special lads who have done well for themselves. They are hard working young guys. If two didn’t already have girlfriends and my granddaughter didn’t have a boyfriend I might be tempted to do some matchmaking!

Doyle and Betty’s oldest son Mike Ison drives for Walmart, and their son Randy Ison is in the reserves. He has been active for several years. I am proud to say Betty and Doyle have become like my family to me.

Betty can remember as a young girl my dad’s sister Victoria and her husband Kirby Whitaker living at Belcraft near Whitesburg in a trailer. Aunt Vick was bad sick with diabetes, and Betty’s family was one of a few who had a refrigerator in those days, which had to be along 1949 or 1950. Kirby would go to Betty’s parents to get ice for Aunt Vick.

I stayed with Aunt Vick, and she died when I was five or six years old. At the time of her death, Aunt Vick was at Grandma Rosa Hall’s house in Green Briar Holler just above Hiram Mitchell’s at Roxana.

Life has sure came full circle for me in lots of ways since I left that beloved little place I still call home at Roxana. When I came out of the mountains I was 16 and amongst strangers. Down through the years I find there’s Johnny and Ann Calihan, who live a hop and jump from me; George and Polly Ison’s children, Polly Maucher who lives in New Trenton, Ind.; Watson and Alma Whitaker’s children in Lawrenceburg, Ind.; and some at Connersville, Ind., and one of their cousins, Eva Knight, is just down the road from me. Over the years I have met so many from the mountains you can’t stir them with a stick.

Some of the old ways are still being handed down to the younger generation, as Frick and Frack are going to demonstrate or reenact how it used to be at hog killing time! I am sure going to try to make it back to the mountains for this exhibition. Polly and I are going to grind the pork into sausage for Frick and Frack, as they show their nephew Kevin Ison and anyone else who wants to see this procedure done right. Now quit laughing, as I was only joshing with those ornery critters known as Frick and Frack.

Doug Ison of Columbus, Indiana enjoyed a few days with his son visiting his brother Michael. I am sure a good time was had by everyone.

Polly Maucher and her sister Jean Ison, along with Polly’s son, went to the funeral of Pat Ison in Whitesburg. After the funeral several gathered at the Pine Mountain Grill. It was a one-day trip, and when they got back to this area there were some tired bones from the long drive to Whitesburg and back in one day. I know what that is like as I have driven that before in one day.

Gwen Farmer’s son Glen Farmer Jr. has to have surgery. I hope he has a speedy recovery. Gwen is still having an abundance of good vegetables from her garden. I hope I am not mistaken, but happy birthday to Gwen on August 16.

Clarence Halcomb has a good garden out, though he was disappointed with some green beans he planted. Someone had mixed some seeds so he pulled the beans up and stated a new crop. I haven’t been to Clarence and Arlyn’s in a couple of years. They always had the most delicious peaches which he would share with lots of people, including us. Someone eventually decided they wanted more than a few and stole every peach off the trees, so Clarence took them out. I hope the rogue got choked on one of the pits. Clarence had maintained these peach trees for about 20 years.

Friday night I went to Richwood Opry to see the Darrel Webb Band. I was going to the Coon Hunters Club, but since my two friends Becky Tipton and Alphine Stacy wasn’t going to be there, I changed my mind and didn’t go. None other than my favorite musician Marvin Davis played the fiddle and I was told he played “Sally Goodin.”

Keep the date open for the Letcher County Day Picnic on September 24 at Harrison Community Center, 300 George Street, Harrison. Bring a covered dish and your beverage. If at all possible it will be held at the big shelter behind the community center.

Hello to my brother Jerry Hall and Mattie. I haven’t heard anything from Shirley Young Hall so I guess she is still taking good care of those hot peppers.

I received a phone call from Betty Ison’s sister Bonnie, who lives in Maryland, asking about Linda Whitaker Day. I gave her Linda’s phone number, as they haven’t been in touch with each other for quite few years. They used to go to school together. Hello to Linda, and it was good talking to you. I am glad you are feeling a little better.

Sis and Ralph Hogg in Michigan, I hope everything is all right with you guys.

Jennifer Collins, who lives in Batesville, Indiana and is originally from around the Whitesburg area, was in the mountains when I was at Hyden. It seems Jennifer and I both had someone looking out for us, as she had a very close call from being in a serious accident. She is the daughter of Clifton Collins, who had a twin brother, Clayton Collins. I haven’t met Jennifer, yet I feel as if I know her. We are going to meet for lunch, though we’re afraid we will get thrown out of a restaurant for giggling so we may just make a bologna sandwich and head for the park.

Hello to Jeff and Dottie Collins.

Well I’d better get this on the road as it is late as usual.

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

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