I just spent a little over a week in Ohio. I hadn't been home in ten years. Despite the fact that it was a trip home to take the ashes of Jim and his father, Harry, it was still a wonderful visit, filled with family, friends, and so much love. If it seems as if there were a number of visits to cemeteries, that's true. But, these are family roots as well, and it provided an opportunity for my mother and me to talk about family. So, here, in pictures, is the story of my Ohio roots.
|My Mother, Elizabeth - Is it any wonder I always liked Louisa May Alcott?|
My first job in a library was at the Huron Public Library, Huron, Ohio. They have a beautiful expanded and renovated building, totally changed from when I worked there. Just gorgeous.
Friday morning, my mother and I had breakfast with her side of the family, my sister, Christie, a cousin, Carol Jeanne, my Aunt Kathy, Aunt Janie and Uncle Kenny.
Friday afternoon was spent at the Sandusky County Fair, where my niece, Elizabeth, was Goat Princess. She and her pygmy goat, Fred, brought home two wins, first in his class for 4-H, Wethers under age 1, and first in the open class for Wethers under age 1. And, when he competed against older goats, the judge said he had promise. Nice job, Elizabeth and Fred!
|Elizabeth, Fred, and Me|
|Me and Fred|
Saturday was the graveside service for Jim and his father, Harry. We had a beautiful service, led by Father Gerald Ceranowski. Thank you to the family and Jim's high school friends from Berlin Heights High School who attended.
It was good to be with my mother and sisters on Saturday. They made the service easier, and then we shared the rest of the day - family and more memories. We all went out for Lake Erie perch for dinner. And, we took our traditional "step" pictures - the three of us on steps. This time, it was at the Huron Public Library, where we all worked as pages, and I returned as Library Director. Perfect spot.
And, this picture means nothing to anyone but me. And, I only took it because I loved the look of this doorway.
Monday, I fnally met friend and fellow blogger, Jen Forbus! We enjoyed lunch in Oberlin, but the highlight wasn't the food, but meeting Jen, who blogs at http://jensbookthoughts.blogspot.com/.
From Oberlin, we went to Westlake, where I had a nice visit with my other Aunt Janie.
Tuesday morning began with breakfast with Jim's Aunt Blanche.
The next two days were actually spent at cemeteries. It was a tragedy in Clyde, Ohio, that led to some of our trips. McPherson Cemetery was the site of terrible vandalism, at a cost of over $100,000. We went to check on a grave. That particular one was fine, but the destruction of so many tombstones of veterans, including historic tombstones, was on a massive scale. It was unbelievable, and, in my opinion, a true expression of evil.
But, we also made the trip to cemeteries where family members were buried. Just a few here.
And, before leaving Ohio, we went by the house my Grandpa and Grandma Growel lived during my entire childhood.
These are my Ohio roots. It won't be another ten years until I return. It's still home.