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Website features Blackey

Southern Ohio

Hello once again!

I would like to say happy spring, but I think it is still wintertime although the sun sure was pretty the first day of spring. Once again we have been predicted to have another blast of winter.

As I was started to get this column finished I looked out the window and it was a burst of snow flurries, and in a little while we had about two inches of snow on the ground. I had planned to go to Fairborn, but I chickened out and stayed home.

Several years ago I remember a heavy snow that broke the trees down in April, and the forsythia was in such pretty bloom. There are a few daffodils in bloom at certain houses. Oh well, why complain when there’s nothing I can do anyway!

While cleaning out some things in my cluttered house, I came across a box of Mountain Eagles I had saved for Carl Crase and somehow I had put them away and forgot them. I could never understand why Carl would never get a subscription to The Eagle; it wasn’t like he couldn’t afford it.

Carl would read the newspaper from cover to cover minus my column as I cut my column out each week and save it. Why, I have no idea. Several times when I would be down in the mountains I would buy a newspaper just so I would have an extra one to give Carl so he would have the whole paper.

I miss Carl’s friendship and his warm smile. Carl would greet me with a smile and say, “All right, hillbilly, behave!”

When I would take the recycled Mountain Eagles to him at the Whitewater Senior Center, I would either crook my finger for him to follow me outside or go hug him and say, “Go outside with me”. He would get the biggest smile and follow me, knowing I was doing it for pure mischievousness as I knew some were wondering why he was heading outside with me.

It is so strange how something so small can bring a cascade of memories sailing through. My life has been so enriched through writing for The Mountain Eagle and through my love for music.

My son Keith Ballard just stopped by to throw salt on my steps and walk to make sure they are clean for me. I try to tell him that I don’t need all this pampering. I am perfectly able to do for myself.

Which reminds me, to all my somewhat new extended family of Les and Pat Wagner, along with Larry and Becky Hasty, this is to their family who read my column. I am doing a lot better and I really appreciate all your concern.

Don Wagner, I may owe you an apology. I really don’t recall if I mentioned you losing your mother. It seems I have been sort of preoccupied for a few months.

It has been somewhat a long couple or three months for me as I wanted to rush things and feel better yesterday instead of tomorrow. I am not very patient when it comes to recuperating.

Laynette Halcomb Collier has started a website on Facebook about Blackey and surrounding areas. It is a wonderful page with lots of information. Laynette posted the swinging bridge that led across to Woodrock. Oh, the memories it brought back to me. As a child I walked from Roxana to Woodrock to stay with my grandmother Betty Barton, sometimes crossing this swinging bridge.

It brought memories of the swinging bridge close to the Tolson Creek Church. I remember there was a birch tree close to it. I wonder who recalls breaking a twig of birch and chewing on it. I wouldn’t know what a birch tree looks like anymore or where to find one!

When I get to return to the mountains I intend on going back through Roxana once more just to look around. I have been to Blackey for Blackey Days, but I didn’t do any looking around as music is my main reason for being there.

Hillbilly Days are coming up April 18- 20 in Pikeville. I really would like to be able to attend this event, and I will just have to wait and see. I haven’t been there in a few years. This is really something to see for anyone who has never had the utmost pleasure to attend.

April 7, a benefit is being held for me at F.O.E, 509 Sports St., Fairborn, 11 a.m.–6 p.m. My friends Art and Joan Peters with the help of Norma

Ashcraft are doing this. Bands include Ma Crow & Lady Slippers, Dixie Ryders, Evan Lanier & Bluegrass Express, Larry Efaw & Bluegrass Mountaineers, Lee Elliott, Nightflyer and a couple of others. I really appreciate everyone doing this for me.

There are door prizes and raffles. Thanks to Don Gross of Middletown, for donating a guitar to be raffled off. Food will be available.

Johnny and Ann Calihan are doing really well after their episode, except Ann’s hand is still giving her a little bit of trouble. Ann always enjoys having their daughter Sue Wagner from South Carolina visit them.

Belated happy birthday to my daughter Angie Wiederhold March 23; happy birthday to my son Keith Ballard March 29.

Happy birthday to Betty Ison April 8. I better mention it as who knows where my mind will be before next week. Betty and I need to get together again to find an interesting topic to jog memories again!

Doyle is ready for warm weather as he wants to get out and do things.

Gwen Huff Farmer is in seventh heaven as her grandson John Harding and his wife Kerry and three children are visiting with her for a few days. Gwen isn’t able to do as much cooking as she used to, but I bet she is right in that kitchen. I have been promising Gwen to come once more to visit her, but it looks that is almost impossible to do any more.

Austin and Mildred Rogers of Jackson, I hope this finds you two doing better. Ann and her family send their love to you.

Bill and Jean Ison, I hope you are perking a little better.

I talked to my brother Jerry and his wife Mattie Hall, and I was very surprised when he told me that my sister-in-law Wanda Hall and Sue Hall had stopped to see me and said I hid from them. Sue told Jerry she saw me and I had a pair of pink pajamas on. I am sorry, but I don’t own a pair of pink pajamas, and if you were at my house I didn’t know you were. I cannot hear when someone is at the door. Should I be in the kitchen, bathroom or bedroom, or if I am running the vacuum, Keith has to call me on the phone to have me open the door

I stayed home Saturday, Sunday and Monday and waited for a phone call, and I never heard anything from anyone. So I figured you were busy with family. That I really understand as there’s not enough time to do what you want.

Please keep the family of Melissa Kelly Shultz in your prayers. Missy is the daughter of Bill and Betty Kelly of Franklin. Betty has a passel of relatives scattered all over. Missy is losing the battle she has been fighting for about five years. My heart seems to always go to the mother when losing a child, well this time it reaches out to Bill. Melissa also has a young son and a husband who adores her.

A very good friend of mine, Sue Courtney, lost her mobile home in a fire a week ago Saturday. She is trying to replace things and it breaks my heart as it brings back so many memories of my parents losing their home not once, but twice, to a fire.

Well, before I get too remorseful I am going to bring this to a close.

Just remember to tell loved ones how much you care about them because you never know when it will be the last time.

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



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