Whitesburg KY

Red tulips were Valentine’s Day gift

Southern Ohio

Hello everyone! I will say once more I hope you are staying warm, as winter is trying to play nice and let us have a ray of sunshine. I have been reading of the flooding still happening, and I hope everyone is safe.

The Ohio River has finally crested at flood stage, and lots of roads have been closed due to high water. Again I will repeat we really can’t complain too much about the weather in this portion of the Ohio Valley.

I have two cans of Carnation milk along with vanilla sitting on a shelf of my lazy susan, just in case it snows, to make snow cream.

Did you have a good Valentine’s Day, with candy, flowers, and cards? It seems each Valentines’ Day, or any holiday, is a reminder of times with my children’s dad and me. When we were first married money was really scarce, but somehow he would find a way to get me a little something.

One February in particular he was laid off from his job, and his unemployment check was a couple weeks behind. On Valentine’s Day he received his unemployment check along with his income tax refund the same day. When he came home, he had bought the biggest Valentine box of candy that I had ever seen.

I would keep the boxes for years, when they would deteriorate. I would just keep the top lid. It is really good to remember the little things.

At times I wish I could just tell him once again how much I appreciated the things he did for me, instead of us being so stubborn and headstrong.

I have been sick for several days with my stomach issues so I never even went out to get a special friend of mine a little bunch of flowers. Actually I haven’t been out of the house since Monday afternoon, thanks to my son Keith Ballard for grocery shopping for me.

Keith gave me a huge vase of tulips with the bulbs in water. I have seen them, but have never had that. The tulips are red and just beginning to bloom and really beautiful. Now if I can keep them alive until they can be planted.

Christmas my daughter Anna Nottingham special ordered me two seedlings of holly. They were enclosed in separate plastic containers, with instructions that read, “I am resting!”

I removed them, put them in two small pots, and now one is almost a foot in height. I almost lost one, but it is finally getting more green leaves on it. They are sitting on my kitchen window. I am afraid to put them in the basement, as they need water. I can’t get up and down the steps like needed.

My Christmas tree and decorations are finally put away. I really thought about leaving my tree up all year. To be honest I have enjoyed ever minute of it being on at night, even the gloomy days seemed brighter.

In this area, each month you get a letter from Duke Energy stating the usage of electric compared to your neighbors, which is a joke, as I don’t have neighbors. My statement says I use too much electricity on certain things. As far as I am concerned, I pay my electric bill with my own money, so what is it any of their business?

Several years ago there was something on television advising people to turn your heat to 65 degrees. To heck I will. An elderly lady who lived across the street from me turned her heat down and her house was so cold when I would go visit her I had to leave my coat on. She always wore a sweater and would wrap in a cover when she sat down.

My daughter Anna can’t stand very much heat, so when I go to her house I am cold. I don’t know how she stands it, plus she babysits, and I gripe.

My heart is breaking as I try to concentrate to finish this column as the little place called Roxana that I love and call home in those mountains of eastern Kentucky is reeling from a tragedy. I’m sending my heartfelt sympathy to Genita Calihan and the Calihan family in the sudden loss of her son Tom Calihan. Tom Calihan is Johnny and Ann Calihan’s nephew

I first became acquainted with Genita Cornett Calihan when I was 13 years old and we were freshmen at Kingdom Come High School at Linefork. Genita was one of the first students that I became acquainted with. We later discovered that my mother, Ora Hall, knew Genita’s parents, Chester and Gracie Cornett, when they were young.

Genita and I hadn’t seen each other in years and finally got together again. It has been a couple of years since we’ve seen each other, as time passes so fast when I am in the mountains, plus everyone knows where I spend my time. You will find me, Friday night at Campbell’s Branch Community Center, and Saturday night at Carcassonne Community Center.

Oh did I say I live a wild and exciting life when I am in the mountains?

Hello to Glenda Tolliver Green. It is so nice corresponding with you through this contraption called a computer. Through Facebook I have been in touch with several cousins that I haven’t seen since they were young children, both from Dad’s and Mom’s side.

Please keep my first cousin Gracie Lewis Widner and her family of New Tazewell, Tenn. in your prayers, Gracie is fighting that dreadful word called cancer. Vickie Power and I got to visit Gracie and her family not long before I had my accident.

I am reminded every so often of the words my ex-husband said to me, that all the people from down home were in a clique. If loving your family and friends, for me people in general is being classified as being in a clique, well just call me the queen.

Oh wait a minute, if pushed too far, you can call me a witch! I love people, be it man or woman, as long as you don’t tell me what to do, where to go, or get too bossy. That is one reason I love my life as it is, as long as my health holds out and financial means are all right, come spring I will be on the road again.

After a week of being in the house I had to break the cycle, so I decided to do some errands. On the return trip to home I made a spur-of-the-moment decision and stopped at Krelmer’s Bier Haus in Miamitown, which is known for its codfish. is

Th was my first time to venture to Krelmer’s. Keith has been wanting to find a place since a local restaurant closed for unknown reasons.

When I parked the car there was a line out the door. I sat in my car a few minutes trying to decide if I wanted to go in or not. As the line got shorter, I finally got up enough nerve to go inside. Just as I walked in, I heard faintly someone call, “Ballard.”

I hadn’t called the place nor even got up to place the carryout order, so I wasn’t concerned. Just as I was about to place the order, someone walked up to me asking if I knew who he was.

After a minute of confusion, and hesitation I replied no. Was I ever in for a surprise, as the total stranger was my ex-husband Jack’s nephew, Brian Ballard, whom I hadn’t seen since he was a baby. I walked to Brian’s table, around which ten people were gathered.

Brian is a Facebook friend with my daughter Kay Gray. Actually Brian and his family met up with Kay and her husband Clarence in a Walmart parking lot in Destin, Fla., a couple of years ago.

Brian’s wife recognized me from pictures that Kay has of me on Facebook. She said, “Brian, I think I see your cousin Kay’s mom.” It was great to see Brian, and his sister Lisa Stat, and everyone.

Lisa said she wanted to hug me so tight, however I was so little she was afraid she would hurt me.

Divorce among other things can sure play havoc with people’s lives, especially where children are concerned. Brian’s mother, along with three small boys, lived with Jack and me for a month or so when Brian was an infant. I diapered Brian, and now here stood this handsome man standing in front of me.

I think Keith has lost his mind. There’s a bakery in Batesville that makes something once a year called Cherry Thing A Lings. Keith was in the Batesville area and decided to bring a dozen home. At $16 a dozen for gob’s of cherry-filled dough, I don’t think so.

While he was there he knows that I used to get something called crème horns, and yes he brought a couple home. This was a waste of money too.

Knowing it would hurt me, I tried to eat a bite. These used to be made with a white fluffy crème inside a fluffy pastry. What he brought home, you’d need a hammer, plus the filling is nothing but Crisco & sugar. Like I said, a waste of money.

There are cats that come to the backyard, and maybe they will enjoy a treat, or the birds.

Hello Les and Pat Wagner, I hope to see you before long.

The movie The Mountain Miner is still going strong. I am planning on calling Appalshop again to see if there’s anyway possible it can be shown there.

Until next time, Rose Ballard, 9110 Lawrenceburg Rd., Harrison, Ohio 45030.

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