Archive for January, 2010

The Gerbil is Named! So Let It Be Written!

January 31, 2010

Mr. Gerbil: "Hmmm, I wonder what my name will be??"

Niece Kari, the brilliantest of all the brilliant ones, has submitted name suggestions from her family for the little Gerby.

Sophie: Yada
Abby: Pastaloista (sounds like hastalavista) or palmopalmo
Ollie: Oliver or Jack or The Rat from Texas
Gilli: The Flying Rat or Alex or Texas or Itunes or Kariann
Christian: Freddy or Jeffrey or Jordan or Timmy
Kari: Smokey
So. It’s hard to choose from such clever submissions. I decided to take the first letter from the suggestions and make a word from the letters, kind of like a demented Scrabble. Much appreciation goes to the submitters of names beginning with vowels. After careful arranging and disarranging, I came up with (insert drum roll here)… POTTY!
Oh dear. Sounds like Keith knew how this was going to play out.
Let’s try again! And this time we get JeffreyOliverPalmopalmoTexasYada!
Sorry Keith and Kari. Smoky Birdcrap was too much for me to deal with.

JOPTY: "Thank you for my name!"

Summer 1960

January 30, 2010

LilSis, Mom, & YoursTruly

This photo was taken about 1960 or perhaps 1961.  It’s hard to know if LilSis is 1 1/2 or 2 1/2 years.  And am I 3 1/2 or 4 1/2?  I can’t say for sure so to be on the safe side, I shaved a year off.  It’s just what girls do – take off a year here or there. 

Anyway.  This was taken at Irma Jaques’s house across the road from us.  You will recognize the house from some earlier posts.  This was before Irma renovated the house and added amenities and had the house re-veneered with brick.  Adorable little cottage both before and after. 

LilSis cracked on my earlier post about the shortness of my skirt.  What’s that, Becky?  Are you wearing a diaper?

The British Army Crossing & Paris Mill in Screven County GA

January 29, 2010


On the morning of march 2nd, 1779, the British Command of Lieut.-Col. Prevost reached the west bank of the creek here after an all night march from Hudson’s Ferry. The bridge had been destroyed by Col. Leonard Marbury’s Dragons guarding the rear of Gen. Ashe’s troops bivouacked at Freeman-Miller Bridge 15 miles south.

Infantry and horse forded the stream, engaged and defeated Marbury’s Dragons, capturing some while others escaped over Burton’s Ferry. Marbury’s message to Ashe was intercepted. Prevost’s troops and artillery crossed on pontoons before day of the 3rd, and arrived at the surprised Ashe’s rear by 3:00 P.M.



On January 4, 2009, we went on an outing into Georgia.  We visited the Lawton Cemetery, and I wrote about that part of the day in an earlier post.  After leaving that cemetery, we drove further on to an area known as Millhaven. 

The Millhaven plantation is an old historic one.  Brier Creek runs alongside or perhaps through it – it’s hard to say without further investigation, and sometimes you just can’t let truth interfere with a good story.  Anyway, the entranceway to Millhaven was, of course, gated with a high brick wall.  I held the camera aloft over the brick wall and snapped a few shots to see what lay beyond. 

Over the brick wall to the right of the gate

Trespassers not welcome

More of the same

There was a long drive which cut through the underbrush and trees, and there might have been some buildings waaaaay back in the distance, but you couldn’t tell what they were.  Sugar and I joked about boosting each other over and just strolling down the driveway, acting like we were lost.  We didn’t, but we thought about it.  Good thing we didn’t.

The entrance is near the bridge that crosses Brier Creek.  Along one side of the road, right before you get to the bridge, there are two historical markers.  One is for Paris Mill and the other for the British Army Crossing.  We parked off to the side, with the car facing the signs.  The first one was Paris Mill.  I snapped a photo.  The next was the British Army Crossing.  I snapped another photo.  Beyond the signs was the sign for Brier Creek.  I snapped a photo, and then we walked to the creek’s embankment to see the tiny little creek below.  Sugar was in front of me, and he turned to say something to me.  He had a look of horror on his face as he looked past me back toward the car.  I snapped a picture – which I will not post here – because I thought it was a funny shot.  He breathed out, “Ohhhh, noooo….”

I turned and saw the police car pulled in behind the car.  We met the nicest officer who explained that there had been an arson in the area, and they were inspecting all visitors that weren’t local.  I explained that we were touristing about, and the Sugar’s ancestor was Seaborn Jones, the second owner of Paris Mill (and if my memory serves me, Seaborn Jones was also the father of Elizabeth Jones who married a Lawton.  I’ll get that straightened out later.  I’m supposed to be writing, right now, an assignment for class tomorrow.  Heh.).  The nice officer gave us some locations for some other places we might like to visit in the area.

Mr. Officer let us off the hook for just gawking about.  Talk about a close call.  If we had actually boosted over the fence, the officer would have seen our unoccupied car, inspected it, and found the empty beer bottles (only two) from where we sat at the Lawton Cemetery and drank a beer.  Then we would have been rounded up for trespassing.  Hard to explain that to the children.


Yes you are under the bridge.

See the nice officer's car door. He is coming to arrest us.


“The earliest trade center and industrial development in interior Georgia was established here before the Revolutionary War by Francis Paris, Senior.

A rock dam was constructed across the creek, of which it is said that the 400 horse power developed for the saw and food mills was by far the greatest in the colony.  The rock foundations of the old dam are still embedded in the creek about 300 yards above the present bridge.

Paris sold the land, mills, and appurtanances to Seaborn Jones of Augusta on February 8th, 1796.”

Sylvan Falls Mill in North Georgia

January 27, 2010

Here’s a little photo essay of a historic mill in North Georgia that is now a bed and breakfast.  You can see their website here.

Here we go!

Enter the garden here.

Surprise! There's a little waterfall!

Have a seat and enjoy the falls.

There's a lake at the TOP of the falls. I swear it's true.

See the chiminea on the screened porch? Now imagine how big this wheel really is.

The entry to the grinding area.

The view above is taken through the window.  That’s a pulley in the middle of the picture taken from an awkward angle so that it looks like a ski ramp. 

The water wheel is an overshot wheel.  The pipe traveling overhead feeds water from the falls to the wheel, and the water can be turned off, so the wheel doesn’t turn continuously. 

Above is another of my through-the-window shots.  The pulley is more evident in the left of the picture. 

So.  Go to their website, and enjoy the day.

Fall 1968

January 26, 2010

LilSis & YoursTruly

Here’s the LilSis & YoursTruly.  LilSis claimed in an earlier comment that she was scared of horses.  Yet here she stands in the middle of a thundering herd.  She’s about 9 years old, almost 10, and I am about 11, almost 12.  I’m sporting a Helen Reddy haircut, and extremely bored with the picture-taking extravaganza. 

I have no clue where this picture was taken.  The large horse in the foreground is BigBroBob’s horse, Sultan.  The Shetland pony is the middle is Dolly (Papa brought home a better pony than Happy), and I’m with Sugar, not to be confused with the two-footed Sugar in many of my posts. 

Dolly was a wonderful pony with a long graceful tail that just skimmed the ground.  I have to say that I have no idea what happened to those ponies.  How does a pony disappear from your memory?  I’m sure my faithful three commenters will have something to say about that…

Gerbils Just Wanna Have Fun

January 24, 2010

Sunday is usually catch-up day.  Sometimes Sugar and I go on an outing, but usually we travel about 30 minutes from R-land to get to a real grocery store, a Home Depot, a Lowe’s, the health food store, and/or the pet supply stores. 

Today found us at PetSmart buying the usual cat food, dog food, dog treats, and large bags of dry cat food for the ferals at the feeding station in the woods.  Then we moseyed over to Lowe’s so that I could get a new water hose.  The ones that go from the well to the RV for my water supply have seen better days, and the connections are going bad.  Last week, I had a failed connection at the entry point at the RV, and water dripped, then spewed everywhere.  I replaced the connector with one that I got at our local Ace Hardware in R-land.  You may have seen that email that’s traveling around touting buying products made in the USA, like a hose attachment from Ace Hardware, as opposed to one from Lowe’s or Home Depot, because those are made in China.  That email was not the reason that I bought from Ace Hardware.  That store is the only hardware choice in my crappy little town.  Well, that connector failed to man-up to the job.

The attachment was some kind of plastic, and Sugar believes that the reason the connection failed was that it was plastic to metal.  OK.  So that means Lowe’s or Home Depot to get metal.  I got the new connector yesterday afternoon after I got out of class.  When I was attaching it this morning, I decided that I needed new water hoses.

We did the tour-of-homes in the Lowe’s, and before we headed to the grocery store, Sugar needed to go to another pet store that was a bit further away from home.  I was okay with that, so we cruised along, enjoying the day, with the temperatures in the 70’s and a bit of a breeze.  I didn’t need anything at the pet store, or so I thought.

This particular store is much smaller than a PetSmart or a Petco, but not tiny like a boutique.  They carry the usual supplies, with a few animals for sale, like parakeets, ferrets, hamsters, and….. gerbils.  The animals are in waist-high display cases along the center aisle of the store.  Sugar was making his purchase, and I was looking at the little pile of gerbils in one corner of the display.  Sugar finished his transaction, and came back to join me, and he pointed out one little gerbil all alone huddled in the opposite corner trying to hide behind the water bottle.  “Look, that one is being ostracized.”  (He has such big words.)

I looked at the gerbil, and saw that the little guy’s rump was red and raw with dried bloody scabs in his fur.  Sugar spoke right up and asked the man in charge if he could ask a question.  The man was receptive, and then embarrassed when he saw the gerbil’s condition.  He said that the others picked on him, and that males will fight.  He said that he would isolate Mr. Gerbil, and keep him in the back of the store to be medicated and healed.

We left the store, with me dragging my feet.  We got in the van, and Sugar started it up.  I said, “Wait.”  So back in the store we go, and I explain that I work for a vet, and could I take Mr. Gerbil?  Mr. Manager said, “Oh, like a pity case?”  I said sure.  He said sure.  I bought a gerbil cage.

And the rest is history….

I need a name

Davy Crockett, King of the Wild Frontier

January 23, 2010

BigBroSteve, aka Davy Crockett, in the spring of 1957

Here’s Davy Crockett, king of the wild frontier.  He’s really my big brother.  And he’s got a gun!  Just like the gun in yesterday’s post. 

I’m pretty sure that Davy Crockett carried a long rifle, or as my BabyBoy called it when he was the same age as Davy Crockett BigBroSteve, a long gun.  I wonder where BigBro stashed his rifle.  Probably wasn’t allowed to carry a rifle in the house so he had to resort to a hand gun.

According to my BigBroBob, Irma Jaques’s niece, Margaret Kaylor, gave the Davy Crockett outfit to BigBroSteve.  That Davy is one cute and happy kid.  He probably slept in those clothes.

Oh, Brother, Where Art Thou Gun

January 22, 2010

BigBroSteve & YoursTruly

This picture was take in the summer of 1957.  My mother wrote on the back of the photo that I was 9 months old.  BigBro would have been about 4 years old.  We were sitting on the couch at Grandma Packett’s.  I think that I might be wearing a christening outfit.  Irma, my godmother, had said when I was christened by sprinkling, I reached out and pushed the minister’s hand off my head.  I didn’t like water in my face even then, and I’m not sure what that says about my rejection of the minister. 

But the funniest part of this picture to me is the gun.  BigBro is holding a gun, probably only a water gun.  Water, christening, sprinkling, I’m starting to see a pattern.  Surely he didn’t wear overalls to church. 

But I’ll bet he took the gun.

The Jaques House, Revisited

January 21, 2010

Last month I blathered on about snow.  I accompanied said blathering with pictures of the homeplace in winter and also a random shot of snow-covered trees, and I wondered if there was another photo that went with these two photos.  Voila, or as niece Kari might type, Viola!

Will & Irma Jaques's House in Winter

The house is boarded up because they were only there in the summertime.  The rest of the year they were at their permanent address in Hialeah, FL.  This photo didn’t really help me solve the location of the snow-covered trees photo, but still, nice to see.

Here’s a shot of their home several years later in the summertime.  I have thoughtfully named this photo “img215”.

The Jaques's House in Summer

And this little parting shot of their adorable godchild, YoursTruly, on their front porch.

YoursTruly, age 2 1/2 years, summer of 1959

And now, I’m off to Spanish class!  I hope I don’t meet up with that nice officer that I met last Thursday.  He seemed to think that my little car was traveling at an excessive rate of speed.

Packett Folks & a Cool Car!

January 20, 2010

Two Packetts and a mystery guest

The above photo was no doubt taken in Lenoir City, Tennessee.  The two people on the left appear to be brother and sister, Cecil Paul Packett and Evelyn Ruth Packett.  I can’t identify the person on the right.  Or the car. 

My mother used to tell a story about how she couldn’t go anywhere except school and church.  She was once a teenager, and was with friends in the local ice-cream parlor.  Her father, mr. preacherman, came after her.  He actually went into the ice-cream parlor and escorted her out of that den of iniquity.  And apparently she had only one dress to wear, and she wore that until the seat of it was shiny. 

How on earth she posed for this picture, and her father didn’t keel over dead.