Wednesday, November 30, 2011

It's the first snow of the season!

It snowed last night! Not much, but there is some snow dust on the garage roof and sheltered areas of the ground. Wow. This makes me pretty happy.

Elizabeth and I are off to Buddy and Kay's today. We're hoping to finish up with that multi-track recorder --- well, Elizabeth and Kay are hoping to finish with it. Buddy and I are going to work on practicing a violin song together. We've been trying to do this for weeks, but by the time we finish everything else it's late at night. So, they're picking us up shortly, and we'll have some daylight hours to practice by!

We've been working on cemetery photos for FindaGrave. We actually went over to Chester Cemetery to take some photo requests. While we were there, we took about 115 pictures. There is an amazing monument for a family named "Swetland". They were pretty rich and quite involved in building up the county. This monument is about twenty feet high, and marks the grave of the wife and their first two baby children who died shortly after birth. Elizabeth was really attracted to it, because one of the babies was a little girl who died when she was nineteen days old. Her name was "Truanna", but her grave is marked with the pet name of "Truannie". Isn't that a cute name?!

Well, got to go for now. They'll be here any time, and I still have stuff to do. More later.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

'Twas the Day Before Thanksgiving . . .

Thanksgiving is tomorrow, and we've got most of our food ready! Elizabeth and I have spent all day in the kitchen, but all we have to do is bake the lasagna roll-ups in the morning and make the Waldorf salad. The salad just doesn't do well on the second day. I'm waiting for the pies to come out of the oven right now.

We ended up with four trays of roll-ups and stuffed shells. That gave us one for tonight, two for tomorrow and one for Friday. Not bad. It even looks like we're going to be blessed with some nice weather for the weekend. This is a great Fall. And you know what?! This is the first Thanksgiving in about five or six years where we haven't had some kind of snow. Several years ago we were actually snowed in!

It doesn't feel like it's already nearing Christmas, but we put on Holiday Inn while we were cooking. That made it seem more like this time of year. I'm ready for some Christmas music, too! So, it should be pretty fun over the next two days --- with plenty to post about. More later.

Monday, November 21, 2011

More Cemetery Work and Thanksgiving Plans

The weather was great on Friday, so we did go down to that cemetery by Buddy and Kay's house. We were there for another four hours or so, and got quite a lot done. The goal for the day was to find the stone of Buddy's ggg-grandfather, George Washington Davis. Someone had posted a picture online of the headstone, but the photo must have been taken some time ago as the stone was still standing and readable. We were able to locate the stone, but it has since broken into two pieces and become almost illegible. It took me about five minutes to dig all of the pieces out and clean the stone off. We had been able to read the top part from the online photo, but not the "aged" line. Thankfully, that was the only part that had been completely buried and was, therefore, readable. We buried the stone again, once we read it with the footstone sticking up to at least read the initials.

Saturday dawned less sunny but still decent, so Pop headed out with us to locate some more stones. We uncovered a lot this time --- mostly babies and children. It is actually really sad how many "under tens" are buried out there. It seems that there is some kind of an underground spring or sink-hole under this cemetery, so a bunch of the stones are just falling over and/or sinking into the ground. There are quite a few that are actually tipping over, and you can see that they are actually in pools of standing water.

We've also been making Thanksgiving plans this week. We're going to the Wright's house this year, and so are the Keultjeses!! Yay! That should be a blast, so I can't wait for Thursday. We're taking Waldorf salad, lasagna roll-ups, pumpkin and pumpkin pie. Then, on Friday, we're going down to Kay and Buddy's for the day to practice some music together and work on their multi-track recorder. In that case, we're making two Thanksgiving dinners. So, we'll be cooking on Wednesday --- along with tons of other people, too! Well, got to get going. More later.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Gravestones and Gummi Pizza

It seems that a week has passed and no more blogging, so I better try and remember what went on here this week. We did get a nice day to go back to that little cemetery by Buddy's house. We actually went on Saturday afternoon. That morning, we four went up to town while Dad got adjusted and we ran a few errands. Not to mention having some bagels for breakfast at Panera. I was in the middle of reading Margaret Mitchell's Gone With the Wind. I've been working on that for about a month now, and I'm almost finished. Well, last weekend, I was at the part centering around the Film Premiere, so I think that I was wearing everybody out with stories as I was reading.

We made it back home a little after noon, so Dad decided to go fishing and the three of us headed down to Buddy and Kay's. Buddy took Mom and me back to the little cemetery. Kay and Elizabeth stayed at the house and talked. We ended up being at the cemetery for several hours and found a bunch of headstones that had fallen over. The grass had grown over most of them, so I "weeded" all of that and we were able to turn them over to read them. The most amazing one was a stone from 1829. When I turned it over there was actually a suction noise! Well, it must have been over for a long time, as it was absolutely perfect --- just like it had been carved yesterday.

Just a few days ago, we went into a cemetery near the house which is quite a large one. They have actually identified six people there that fought in the Revolutionary War. This is a picture of one that we saw. My favorite of all the monuments that we've seen lately is this one for a "Lurena Woodward". It was just beautiful, so here's a picture! We're hoping to head down to Buddy's again tomorrow, so that we can go back to the little cemetery down there. More on that later --- depending on how everything goes.

Yesterday, Elizabeth and I finished another music video. This time it was to Buddy's song The Ten Commandments. We really had a blast with this one, as it gave us a chance to do some fun stuff that you can't usually get away with. The song has a real Jewish sound to it, so we tried to go along with that in the video. All of the mountain shots that we used are of the Mountains of Sinai. It is also our first venture into using .png files in the video editing program. All in all, we were pretty pleased with it.

Last but not least, what in the world has "gummi pizza" got to do with this?! Not much. Mom and Elizabeth found the cutest little candy last week, and I'm sending it to a friend. But before I packed it --- I took a picture. Cute, huh?! More later.

Friday, November 11, 2011

A Date to Remember

A date that only comes around every hundred years.

So, what did we do on this extra-special date? Elizabeth and I spent the day dusting books in our bedroom, rearranging the shelves to fit more books on them, and actually shelving that collection of Nancy Drew books that we got at an auction last month. It meant taking down all of the fancy little decorations that were scattered between book collections, but now everything is up in place.

Mom and I are just dying for next week to get here. If there is a day with some nice weather during the week, we're planning on going back to the little cemetery that Buddy found. We want to try and read some of those grave stones, so Mom has been looking up techniques on how to bring the writing "out". Apparently, there is this great method using aluminum foil. You take some of the really cheap, thin foil and lay a piece over the area of the stone that you want to read. Then, you take a soft brush (e.g. makeup brush) and brush the foil into the carving. The foil conforms to the letters and you can read the stone like it was made yesterday. I'm just dying to try this. Hopefully it will work like they say it does.

We watched a good movie the other night: Saboteur. It's a wartime Hitchcock thriller/mystery starring Robert Cummings and Priscilla Lane. I wasn't really keen on seeing it, as Mom remembered seeing it years ago and thinking that it was quite boring. I didn't relish sitting through that, but Elizabeth wanted to see the shot of the wrecked Normandie, so we put it on. Wow. It wasn't five minutes before that film was the exact opposite of boring. In fact, it was so thrilling that the two of us were hardly breathing. Amazing! Priscilla Lane's Uncle (in the film) was just a great character.

Well, it's been a long day, and I'm ready to relax. More later.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Dismantling the Gnome Garden

Saturday was an absolutely gorgeous day, so I dismantled the Gnome Garden and got it ready for Winter. That meant putting all of the concrete and metal decorations on the shelf in the shed, throwing out the goldenrod and corn stalks and removing all of the gourds and pumpkins. We have a few Cinderella pumpkins that still need to be baked, so those are sitting up on the straw bales, but everything else had to go. I did put up some of the grape-vines that we got from Buddy and Kay, so that will act as a kind of garland to hang things from for the birds.

The amount of mold this year has been awful! Take a look at the side of that basket in the picture here. It's no wonder that we've all been suffering from some allergies. Even Pop. Do you know that we had mushrooms in the sunny parts of our yard all year, not to mention the shady areas, too?!

On Sunday afternoon, we went down to Buddy and Kay's to spend some time just having fun. Buddy and the two of us spent all evening playing music together and discussing some fun plans that we've got for a little music video --- just for the fun of it! Elizabeth and Kay made dinner while Buddy took Mom and me to a cemetery where some of his grandparents are buried. That was one of the "hilliest" cemeteries that I'd ever seen. To walk all the way back to the old part was an actual climb. Up, down and then up again before you got to a very small piece of level ground. They had some really old graves there, though, and one that was actually marked for a soldier in the War of 1812! The cool thing is that Buddy was actually related to the soldier. We didn't find that out until yesterday, though. Cool, huh?!

On the way back to the house, Buddy decided to look for a cemetery that he went to once with his Uncle --- about forty years ago. Amazingly, he found it right away. He's like a live atlas on all those back roads. It's really amazing. This was a smaller cemetery at the edge of a large field. It's fenced in with a really old fence, and somebody is still mowing it. Well, Buddy knew that his great-Grandfather's first wife was in there, so that's who we were looking for. In the end, there are tons of other relatives, too, so we had fun until the Sun was pretty much down. There is a pile of stones that have fallen down. Somebody has been piling them all in the corner, so we're hoping to go over and see if we can look through those before Winter.

I spent last week making slides for a new Sing-Along video to Buddy's song I Don't Believe in Evolution. Elizabeth actually edited them all and finished it in about an hour. If you want to take a look, then check out our YouTube channel: Buddy Davis Fan Club

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Roy Rogers' 100th Birthday: Happy Birthday, Roy!

He was born Leonard Slye in Cincinnati, Ohio, on November 5, 1911. The building where he was born (412 Second St. to be exact) was torn down decades ago, but it's very easy to find the spot today. The King of the Cowboys was born in the middle of what is now the Cincinnati Reds baseball stadium --- right over second base! This Ohio boy went on to become the greatest singing cowboy of the silver screen, a founder of the Sons of the Pioneers, and he even married his leading cowgirl, Dale Evans.

Today marks Roy Rogers' 100th Birthday. Wow! He was an amazing man and truly deserves his title King of the Cowboys.

Elizabeth has been working like a dog (so, how do dogs "work"?) on a music video tribute for this occasion. We've wanted to make one to Dusty's song, King of the Cowboys, for years --- and this seemed the perfect opportunity. All in all, it took fifty clips from a variety of films to make this montage. Of the fifty clips, thirty-nine of them are in slow motion. I love slow motion! So, we hope that you enjoy this tribute to finest cowboy that ever rode the Silver Screen. Also, if you're interested in more Roy Rogers and Dale Evans movies, check out our YouTube channel: The Cowboy and the Senorita.