Archive for September, 2015

The Fan & Feather

September 27, 2015

It’s a knitting design that you might see from years ago. It looks tricky as all get-out, but there’s only one pattern row in 4 rows of knitting.

Overall, there’s a scalloped edge that’s created by the pattern. It’s a natural feature and can’t be changed. Which now makes me wonder if there’s a short-row method where you start with a straight edge and work in the scallops. I think it will take someone smarter than me with fewer irons in the fire to figure it out.

Anyway, the pattern is worked in sets of 30. Let’s start with one pattern repeat for practice. Cast on 30 on straight needles.  Knit the first row. Turn your work and purl the second row. The third row is the pattern row made by purling two stitches together five times (thereby reducing 10 stitches to 5), then knitting one and throwing a yarn over ten times (thereby turning 10 into 20), and purling two together on the remaining 10 stitches (reducing 10 stitches to 5). For the fourth row, you will purl across.

That’s it. A lovely design created with 4 rows.

You will need to steam block this, so remove the cats from the bed and spread out your finished afghan.

Maybe that last part is just me.

After blockage, I cut pieces of yarn that were approximately 7″ long. I cut them from another skein that was variegated with white, pink, and baby blue. I threaded each length through an end stitch and tied an overhand knot so little hands can’t pull it out and eat it.

The afghan is baby blue but the iPhone changes the color sometimes and won’t allow editing to the correct color. (Insert your imagination here.)

I folded it in thirds lengthwise and put on a hanger and hung it in a wax myrtle for photos.


I think I used a size 9 circular and acrylic worsted. I believe I casted on 180 stitches. You can use any size that makes your heart happy. Happy knitting!


The Frederick Ball House and the View From Columbia Square

September 27, 2015

After Sugar and I walked around the exterior of the Frederick Ball House in Savannah, Georgia, we headed across the street to Columbia Square. 

A walking woman saw us wandering around taking lots of photos, and she thought we were lost tourists. She offered her assistance by asking if we were lost. We replied that we were local-ish, and she told us once of meeting some folks walking south, who commented that they were almost to the river. The river is indeed north. 



 On the way back to the car, I realized that the front door knocker was too interesting and ornate to pass by. 


So come along the next time with us! Always something interesting to see in Savannah. You don’t even have to be a relative.  

The Frederick Ball House in Savannah, Georgia

September 24, 2015

Do you remember when Sugar and I went to Washington, Georgia?

If you are new to the blog then you don’t remember it at all. But it happened almost exactly 2 years ago. Our interest in Washington, Georgia, was due to the fact that we were searching for more information about Corinne Elliott Lawton.  Corinne’s mother, Sarah Alexander Lawton, was from Washington. 

There were other reasons we were there. We were interested in Fanny Andrews. We were interested in her parents, Garnett Andrews, who married Annulet Ball. And Annulet’s father was none other than Frederick. 

Recently another of Sugar’s and Corinne’s cousins, yet another Corinne, was reading one of Eliza Frances “Fanny” Andrews’s books, Diary of a Georgia Girl, which is her war-time journal during The War. Sugar discovered that Fanny’s mother’s parents had a house in Savannah. 

You know what this means? We’re off to Savannah!

We didn’t attempt to break and enter. Of course, I took photos from every angle. 

Up the steps to the first floor, and down the steps to the ground floor. There’s not a basement or cellar, there’s a *ground* floor. 


The west side of the house is the front entrance.


A passageway between the Ball house and the house next door to the south.




The north side of the house


The building behimd the house.


The back of the house over the fence.



Ah, crape myrtles, and Columbia Square across the way.


Now let’s walk through the square…    

My Social Experiment

September 23, 2015

Y’all might already know that I live in an area that’s rural. It’s a historically black area, and some of the homes are shabby, some are well-kept, and some are grand. My little pocket of woods is in a shabby area. There are some trailers and concrete-block houses, some sheds and abandoned properties. Mostly there isn’t much of anything in my particular area, which suits me just fine. 

I met a man who works as a dispatcher for the 911 system. When he found out where I lived, his eyes widened a bit, and he said that they didn’t get many calls from this area by people of my “flavor”. I think that’s why no one messes with me. They must think I’m crazy, plus all the cats. 

Speaking of cats, I get cat food donations from various folks and rescue groups. When one calls and offers a whole PALLET of cat food, I don’t say no. They deliver it to my gate and usually help me offload into the shed. 

I had one such load a few years back. The canned food expired last March a year ago, according to the date on the cases, but the food itself had not gone bad. The cats were bored with it, and rolled their eyes at me every time I trotted it out. 

Really, I had CASES of the stuff left. What to do? I had given some away in the past, but I didn’t feel like toting the food around. I decided to try a social experiment. 

I put several cases of food by the end of the driveway with a little sign “FREE CAT FOOD”.  And headed off for the day. 

When I returned, the food was gone. 

I did it again the next day. 


I cannot tell you how tickled I was when I turned the last corner on the way home, and saw that everything was gone. I had told a few sensible people about my experiment, and they said that someone could sue me because the food was expired. I told another person and I wondered out loud if a food bank would have taken the cat food if unexpired, and this smart person said probably not because there are non-English speakers/readers who might take the food home, add mayo to a can of cat food and feed it to their children. All good points and well-taken. 

I continued my experiment, shaking up the mix a bit by adding bags of dry cat food, and continued this for a few more days when I had an epiphany. 

Why not put out things I don’t want any more? It would save me a trip to the dump and keep things out of the landfill, plus the logistics suited a person like me. Just drag your junk to the end of the driveway, and see what happens. 

I had several skateboard decks that I put in an empty kitty litter bucket and put next to the stack of canned food. When I got home that evening, the cat food was gone. The skateboard decks were not. 

After all, my sign did say FREE CAT FOOD, not FREE SKATEBOARD DECKS. Clearly my advertising campaign needed a boost. 



So far, I’ve disposed of skateboard decks, mismatched cups (how many cups does one person really need?) and various useless kitchen items, rusty tools, an old bicycle with two flat tires that had been sitting outside for seven years, the red vinyl Adirondack chair with a broken back (do not buy these chairs even though they look super-cute and home-deco-y because the plastic connection between the back slats is too thin and breaks), bags of expired dog food, a wobbly baker’s rack that I got out of the metal dumpster at the dump 10 years ago, a bicycle pump, some pairs of boots and galoshes, and who knows what else. 

The dogs got so used to people stopping that they stopped barking when a vehicle would pull over.

I got rid of things I didn’t need that someone else could use. And they took it away for me. 

I feel like a mad scientist.  In a happy sort of way. 

Post-LawtonFest 2015: The Stoney Creek Cemetery

September 22, 2015

While we were heading to the 2015 Lawton and Allied Families Reunion at Edisto, we tootled past a sign we’d never seen before. 

We both gasped. Was that for real? Why had we never seen it? True, it was on a remote section of highway, but we’d both had reason to travel that way, and it was new to us. Perhaps it was new to everyone. 

The sign was a road sign for Stoney Creek Cemetery Road. This was important to us because it marks the final resting place for Sarah Jaudon Robert’s busband Jacques. She’s buried in the Robert Cemetery near Mulberry Grove. 

This is not a place to go alone. It’s not dangerous, just remote. And possibly snake-y. 

Seeing how we wouldn’t have time to turn around and stop, we hoped we’d have time to stop the following day on the way home. 

Y’all already know that we did. The grounds are beautifully kept, the turf dense and green like a golf course. The old bricks are like the ones at the Lawton-Seabrook cemetery on Edisto. 

The church was burned during the Civil War. Some of the  graves are on findagrave. There are actually two listings for the same cemetery, although  the location is clearly Beaufort County, not Hampton. Just ask your friend, Ms. G.P. Ess.


Jacques Robert


Don’t you want to visit?


LawtonFest 2015: The Lawton-Seabrook Cemetery

September 21, 2015

Sugar and I and everyone else at the Lawton and Allied Families Reunion have finished lunch and are ready to caravan over to the Lawton-Seabrook Cemetery. 

We were here earlier this year when the leaves were still off the trees and we needed jackets. 

Today, the bright midday sun on the markers makes for some interesting photos. 

This walled cemetery is a rare thing in this state. We know of one other one at the Tison cemetery in Garnett. 

I’m happy to say that several of the cousins attended the reunion because they found the blog. Just doing my part for humanity. 

Now our time together has come to a close. 

Of course, we stop to check out the market on the way home (KEY LIME PIE. SEVEN DAYS A WEEK.), and wouldn’t you know it, some Lawton connections are already there and wave us into a parking space. 

Great minds think alike. 

And on the way home, a quick adventure to another cemetery…

LawtonFest 2015: A Visit to Julia Legare

September 21, 2015

Sugar and I are at the Lawton and Allied Families Reunion on Edisto. We’ve just finished listening to our speaker Tim Drake present a talk about Victorian funeral customs. 

One of the things he mentioned was the worry that people would be buried alive. He brought up Julia Legare (Leh-GREE) who was buried in a mausoleum outside. 

There are many different legends that surround Julia, but all have one point in common. It was believed that she was buried alive. It was believed that she was not deceased, but was in a coma, and when the mausoleum door was opened years later for another burial, this was discovered. 

Today there is no solid door on the mausoleum. There are three markers inside for John Berwick Lagare, his wife Julia Legare, and their son Hugh Swinton Legare. 


The 1850 census shows another child, Joseph.

 If you would like to learn of further stories about Julia, the Internet abounds. 

I hope she rests well. 

LawtonFest 2015: The Prayer Chapel

September 18, 2015

On the grounds of the Edisto Island Presbyterian Church, there is a prayer chapel. 


It’s open to the public. I wonder if the door is ever locked. 

This style doorknob was in my grandmother’s house, with a metal plate and made for a skeleton key. 


There’s a lazy overhead fan that turns endlessly with just enough breath to lift the corners of the papers on the bulletin board. 

Not far from the front entrance is a cenotaph for this guy, the reason we are here. 

I’d never heard of a cenotaph until we found this one a few years ago. It’s not the name of a dinosaur, it’s a memorial for someone who is buried elsewhere. 

He’s not far away. As a matter of fact, Sugar and I have already visited him, and I got some spectacular photos of the day. 

But first, we visit our friend Julia Legare… 

LawtonFest 2015: The Shout

September 16, 2015

A custom in the slave community was the “Shout”. It was a ritual of dancing, noise making, chanting, and singing to help the spirit of the deceased pass over. A Shout was viewed as pagan and was not encouraged by the planters or the religious community. 

 Finally, our speaker discussed the importance of the wake. Sometimes people weren’t really deceased, but were merely in a coma. Their breath was too faint to show vapor when a mirror was held to their lips. Rather than burying one alive, watch was kept over the body. Clearly, a deceased person without the benefit of embalming will prove to be deceased in a matter of days. And saved by the bell? A newly buried person might have a string attached to their body. That string went above-ground where it was attached to a bell. 

Look up Julia Legare (Le-GREE). She’s buried outside in this very graveyard. 

As a sidenote, a widow was said to have died from a broken heart when she died shortly after her husband. The truth was that she probably died of arsenic poisoning, arsenic being one of the ingredients used in dyeing the clothing black for mourning. If one is wearing black night and day, that’s high exposure for arsenic absorption through the skin. 

Victorian Funeral Customs? Who’d have thought it would be this fascinating?!

And don’t forget to carry the body out of the church feet first, so the eyes of the dead don’t look back at the congregation and invite them to follow. 

LawtonFest 2015: After the Death

September 16, 2015

Sugar and I are at the Lawton & Allied Families Association Reunion on Edisto Island. The guest speaker is Tim Drake, who has just told us about sin eaters.

The next section concerned after the death. Invitations to the funeral were sent, which is an important part of the process, because the bereaved family had to house and feed the guests, sometimes for days. So, no invitation, no funeral fun for you.


Another section focused on African American customs. The burials happened at night, with the bodies buried in an east-west position and the eyes facing toward Africa. Before burial, people sat up with the body to protect it from being consumed by wild animals. Hogs were free-roaming and would eat anything, even a human body.