Tuesday, May 27, 2014

504 months

Today is my 42nd wedding anniversary.  I am truly a grateful woman...amazing husband, amazing children, amazing grands.  There's nothing else to say but only because it's hard to say how the heart feels with the abundance.

Today I attended the Lorain County Historical  Society's Women's Association Meeting.  I sure do enjoy getting to know these ladies.  Our meeting/luncheon today was held in an historic home in Avon, OH...home to Jean Fisher.

This home is on Stoney Ridge Road, right on the street, Originally the Wilbur Cahoon House.  Jean and her husband who was an Orthopedic Surgeon bought this home in the 60s and were determined to fill it with antiques.  Luckily for them, antiques went for dirt cheap back then since most people wanted NEW everything and were so happy to rid themselves of vintage things (Jean's husband would look at an item they wanted to purchase and would estimate what type of injury and the resulting surgery would be needed to buy that item; quite a cute story).  Jean has researched just about everyone she bought and is waiting word concerning one piece because the craftsman's name is on the back of a drawer and since it's American made, and if it does belong this this particular artisan it's going to be the cheapest, most expensive piece in her collection.
 This is the fireplace in the original, first room in the home (which has been added onto often).  Originally the fireplace was much smaller but the gentleman who owned the home in the 1950's enlarged it.  From the back of the house you can see the original chimney that he kept.  Of course there was an instance when he lit the first fire in the newly enlarged area and it was discovered the original chimney could not handle the size of the fire and some remodeling was done.  But again, here, antiques have been found to enhance the home.

I am being very careful in not adding very many pictures of the home, as per Jean's request.  She gave me permission to take these pictures.  This is a window in the parlor which is on the south end of the house.  This would have been the formal receiving room and what denoted it as such is the fact that it's the only room where there are finished wood around the windows.  There are a lot of doors in this home.  For every room on the 2nd floor there is a duplicate room in the basement. Because the house is built high up, it has never been in danger of flooding altho it is on the banks of the French Creek.  Jean pointed out how far the creek rose during Hurricane Sandy as well as on our storm May 12 of this year.  Many of the wild life she's used to seeing have been eaten by coyotes but this morning Earleen noticed 4 baby raccoons in the yard and Jean was overjoyed.  She feeds the squirrels and birds and if you stand right by the windows in the kitchen you can see it all.  Such a treat.
 Here's Jean as she's showing off this amazing table.  Such lovely wood.
Toward the end of the little tour, when most of the other ladies who had already seen the home had gone to the kitchen to chat, I asked Jean if she had any ghosts.  We had a very nice discussion about the spirits of those who had lived in this home.  Jean believes as I do, that the spirits just move on from their mortal bodies but probably still have an interest in the home and in the lives of their loved ones.  Her youngest daughter used to talk to a man, an imaginary friend, but who she named as one of the previous owners of the home.  Plus one of her granddaughters mentioned rather recently that the room she slept in while visiting, the one over the parlor, had a ghost.  I smiled and figured that that was probably true, too.

Jean and her husband had 8 children and below you will see that their silhouettes were all done by Wally Spatz...same woman who did Debi and my silhouette back in the day.  Dr. Fisher died 7 years ago and Jean still cannot believe he's been gone that long already.  She's 87.  Imagine!

Today's refreshments were our favorite salad.  We each brought one.  I was so happy to bring mine mainly because with just Robert and me, there's too much for us to eat altho I have to admit I could eat a boatload of this stuff. I got this recipe from Gwen Miller who made it often.  I knew it was old but during the food line, one of the very, very old ladies mentioned that it had to be the same recipe that her mom used to make...and it was.  Plus she remembered most of the ingredients.

I had to take this picture...I always smile when I open a can of Corned Beef.  Really!  Who even uses this anymore?  Sad because you are all missing out on some good stuff.  It's not as easily found on grocery shelves but it is there.  What I loved as a child was this key that is attached to side of the can, with which you use to open the can.  But you must be careful and turn the key slowly because you want to keep it square with the can so you don't break off the tin.
 I used one of my mom's old copper molds (which she used to have hanging on her kitchen wall) because it just seemed fitting.    I have tried to give these away but I recollect that only Jocelyn took one.  It just didn't seem right to make this molded salad in some 7x11" pan and cut it into squares.  Very tacky!
I adorned the top because I knew I'd be serving this to ladies who know the value of presentation.  It took me a bit to locate this recipe but I finally found my old blank book which I have written in recipes...long before the times of computer and computer recipe programs.

Another woman brought a great GRAPE salad.  I could have eaten a whole lot more of this, for sure and definitely will be making it sometime.  Very easy.

2 pounds seedless grapes
2 8oz pkg cream cheese
3/4 cup sugar

Combine the softened cream cheese and sugar, fold in the grapes.  Top with coarsely chopped pecans tossed in brown sugar.  Wow!  So very tasty.

All in all a lovely morning spent with lovely women.  This Friday/Saturday will be the first of the Women's Association garage sales.  The 'real' one is in September but so many things have been donated that Earleen opted to have a presale so the one is September could better display the items. The same is true for this one.  Then on June 7 is the Association's Spring Luncheon and I was asked to help with that one as well.

I still wish that the younger generation could know, understand, appreciate the niceties of bygone era...which actually isn't all that long ago. I wish they would find such an organization and work with them.   I always get such a sense of companionship, and openness with these ladies.These are women who are honest and know how to be pay their debts in the world.  Who do not leave the general populace to pay for their mortgages, their welfare, their bills.  They have worked hard and now I think they truly deserve to be spoiled. Jean said several times while we chatted..."I am spoiled."

  I am also spoiled in so many ways.  And grateful.


Lin Floyd said...

sounds like a fun group and activity. i enjoy associating with the Daughters of Utah Pioneers locally who work on preserving our ancestors accomplishments...

Jocelyn Christensen said...

That looks very cool!

Jocelyn Christensen said...

And I love a good ghost story!

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