Whitesburg KY
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More than 100 present at Ison family reunion

Southern Ohio


Hello again, everyone! Gee, how time passes when you are having fun! Have you started Christmas shopping yet? Just a few short months and old Santa will be here again! It seems as if people try to celebrate Christmas in July!

The annual reunion for the George and Polly Ison family, which is usually held at the home of Doug Ison of Columbus, Ind., was hosted this year by Polly Ann Ison Maucher in New Trenton, Ind. Over 100 people were present including Doug Ison; Michael and Teresa Ison, who live at the mouth of (Paradise Valley) Paices Branch, and their son and his wife from New York; and Bill and Jean Ison, who live not far from Polly Ann. Their daughter came in from Texas especially for the reunion!

Several of my little extra mountain mama Alma Whitaker’s children attended, Linda, Cenia Faye, Woody and Wendell Whitaker. There was enough food to feed an army.

I was invited but as usual my plans were interrupted as a friend of mine had surgery and I stayed with her. I did have a little excitement as my friend started slipping out of her wheelchair. I managed to let her lean against me and push the wheelchair away as she slid to the floor. Of course I had to call for help to get her back up. There’s never anything boring about my life!

Polly Ann cooked breakfast for all who stayed at her house. I think she tried to make sure everyone had food for the next few days.

Bill and Mary Halcomb, Johnny and Ann Calihan couldn’t attend the Ison reunion as Vina Caudill had died so they went to Whitesburg. My sincere sympathy goes out to Vina Caudill’s family.

Since I knew I wouldn’t be able to attend the reunion, I went to visit Polly Ann along with my sidekick little Bennie Wiederhold. I really enjoyed seeing Michael and his wife Teresa, who works at Letcher Manor Nursing Home. I hadn’t seen Michael since I was about 11 or 12 years old. had seen Doug a couple of times; this is a very close family.

While visiting with Polly and the family, little Bennie really had a great time. He was a hit with everyone. Polly’s nephew had three huge dogs in a cage. Bennie wanted to get in the cage when the dogs weren’t occupying it. When they were penned up again, one dog was panting and little Bennie stuck his finger to the dog’s tongue and then smelled his finger. Everyone laughed so hard at this we almost fell out of our chairs with laughter. Bennie smells every bite of food that he eats, plus he smells his clothes, too. If something doesn’t smell good to him, he will turn up his nose, crinkle up his eyes and shudder.

When I thanked Polly Ann for inviting me, she told me I was family, that I was from Roxana. and part of her. Polly Ann has been away from the mountains of home for several years, still her good old-fashioned ways stay with her.

During Johnny and Ann Calihan’s trip to Whitesburg, they went to visit my favorite spot of Paradise Valley (Paices Branch). They talked to Genita Cornett Calihan, who lives in the old homeplace of Nora and Lloyd Calihan. Genita is a really nice person. Afterward Johnny and Ann ventured on to West Virginia to visit Ann’s sister, Evadean, and her husband, Lafe Marcum. Keep these two special people in your prayers as they aren’t doing very well.

I did manage to go to Ken and Frances Jackson’s 50th anniversary party at Rising Sun Senior Center. It was well attended; probably 200 or more were present for this event. Ken and Frances are the parents of eight children. The children had a surprise video made for them. Ken has a band, he wrote a song especially for Frances and one of the band members sang it. The words are really beautiful. There was a chocolate fountain as tall as I am that I stayed away from. The food was catered, and the wedding cakes were decorated pretty. No, I didn’t eat any of that either! My foot was still bothering me so I only danced part of a dance and sat and talked the rest of the evening.

How many of you remember hearing a magnet called a load stone? I can remember as a child at Roxana, finding a strong magnet and playing for hours trying to pick up bobby pins or anything that it would pick up! As I was wiping a refrigerator these memories came creeping in.

I have spent many a happy hour finding an empty can, as beer cans were plentiful, stomping them to get them to stay on your shoes and clumping around on them. When I see stilts being used in parades to make someone taller, it reminds me once again of simpler days as I am sure there are several who can say we were very inventive making our own stilts out of tree limbs that had forks on them to place your feet!

While I am taking care of little Bennie, you will find a cardboard box in my living room. This little tike has discovered ways to really enjoy this. As I start to change his diaper, he runs to get in the box and pulls a couple of sides together to hide from me. He also pulls in some of his toys to just play. I have been reading to him. He loves the pictures in the books.

Gwen Huff Farmer had a great surprise as the phone rang and it was her son, Forest Farmer, and his wife. While they were talking someone rang her doorbell – there were Forest and his wife in person. Her son, John Farmer, will be stopping by as he is on another fishing trip!

Hello, Glen Farmer Jr., as I know you read my column.

Gwen says her garden is doing really well if she can keep the deer out. She has sent me several pictures of her garden and flowers. You talk about something beautiful.

Shirley Wells of Clarksville, Tenn., maybe things will settle down here and you and I can connect again on the computer. Shirley and I are back in the raising children stages again. Not complaining, it keeps me busy.

Hello to Dover and Nadine Cornett of Richmond. I just got the news that Dover is ill. Dover Cornett, Clarence Halcomb, and my sweetheart Clarence Huff were really good friends as young boys back on Linefork.

Hello to my buddies Levine and Bruce Jones. Bruce, watch your garden patch as Richie had a craving for new potatoes. Just kidding!

Little Devon Cornett and Richie and Kerstie, who is Richie and Wanda’s granddaughter, have been having a lot of fun swimming and playing together this summer.

Start your plans for Letcher County Day in Harrison, Ohio, Sept. 20.

Well once again that old clock is looking at me as if to say get out of here! Until next time.

Rose Ballard, 9110 Lawrenceburg Road, Harrison, Ohio 45030, email Bluegrassmama4@aol.com.


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