Sunday, January 31, 2010

Update On The Boy From Anna- Gerald Westerbeck

Update On The Boy From Anna--Gerald Westerbeck

Got some emails from Gerald Westerbeck so I now can tell you a little more about him. But first,
look at this photo. Yes, we have a fresh batch of snow on the ground. Much less then we got on December 19'th. We probably got around 4 inches. Further south in Richmond they are digging out from about a foot of snow.
And we Virginians just want to announce that Miss Virginia was crowned Miss America last night in Las Vegas. She hails from Frederickburg, VA south of us and attends Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond as a senior.
Now for you Ohio folks and especially you Anna-Russia folks here's some more facts about Gerald Westerbeck, the Anna boy.
1. He graduated first in his class of 41 from Anna High School in 1958.
2. He played basketball, baseball and track. He said that in his senior year a short stocky fellow
from Russia beat him in the 100 but he beat the Russia fellow in the 200. (I wonder who that
short stocky fellow from Russia was?
3. Gerald played basketball for Anna but said he didn't score much because the gym at
Kettlersville had a low ceiling and it was hard to scoop in for a shot.
4. Gerald said that in his senior year Anna played a 1-2-2 defense against Russia's basketball team
which was rather stupid because as Anna's point guard he just spent all this time chasing
the two really good shooting point guards that Russia had on the team. (I wonder who they
were? Anybody know. Could one have been a Cordonnier?)
5. Gerald went to Ohio State for one year where he says his one crowning achievement was
joining Theta Chi and learning to drink beer. (Sounds like Ohio State was the same in
1958 as it is today! LOL!)
6. Gerald then was selected as Shelby County's first candidate to the newly opened Air Force
Academy in Colorado Springs. Rep. William McCulloch appointed him.
7. Gerald said he met his wife Judy on a blind date. (Blind date---that's an expression you don't
hear often today. Judy Richardson Westerbeck had gone to Fairmont High School in Kettering
and had been a high school cheerleader.
8. At the Air Force Academy Gerald joined the Protestant Choir and made many trips with the
group across the country. In 1961 this choir sang for the Easter Sunrise Service at the
Hollywood Bowl and thru a friend Gerald got to stay at John Wayne's home in Hollywood
and to go on a double date with Melinda Wayne, John Wayne's daughter. (Something about
a young man in an academy uniform that opens a lot of doors and a lot of hearts. LOL!
Go Anna!)
9. Gerald and I almost were on Okinawa at the same time. He left in July of 1968 and I arrived
in August of 1968.
10. Gerald's father's name was Millard Westerbeck and his mother was the former Ruth Ware.
11. Gerald still has a younger sister who lives in Kettlersville, Ohio near Anna.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Clarence Mahan-The Man From Bloomer

Today I said I would tell you about my husband's first boss in Virginia who grew up in Bloomer, Ohio which is just a few miles south of Russia, Ohio. I met Clarence Mahan, Jack's first boss in Virginia, at a lovely garden party that he threw at his home in West Kings Park. Clarence would throw a beautiful garden party each May when all his hundreds and hundreds of exquisite irises would be in full bloom. Clarence and his wife Sooki grew and developed irises as a hobby and they both belonged to the American Iris Association. Later Clarence would be president of the American Iris Association and would travel all over the United States visiting other iris growers and giving talks at iris meetings.

So here I am with my family at Clarence's home when he comes up and introduces himself to me and says I understand that you are originally from a small town north of Dayton, Ohio. I am thinking to myself that here I go again---having to explain that I'm from Russia, Ohio and that it was named Russia by the French soldiers immigrating to America who had fought in Russia under Napoleon, including that famous General Grilliot who has his name on the Arc of Triumph in Paris, France. And then I suppose I will have to explain that although the village is spelled Russia the village is most often pronounced Roo-she.

So I did explain all this to Clarence and everyone sitting around us. Then Clarence said he wanted me to guess where he was from in Ohio. It is very close to Russia. So I played this guessing game with Clarence for a moment. Is is Versailles? Is it Fort Loromie? Is it Minster? Is it Piqua? When I gave up and Clarence told me that it was Bloomer I just about flipped out.

Bloomer, Ohio! Get out of here. I then told Clarence that I could never understand why anyone would name a town Bloomer. It sounded too much like bloomers. Those lady's civil war era white underpants that came down to the knees much like men's basketball trunks do today. Then of course, Bloomer is the single of a pair of bloomers so it must be half of a pair of bloomers or half of a lady's underpants. Actually, pretty risque if you start thinking about it. At that point I'm thinking to myself that this is my husband's big boss at the energy department so maybe I should just stop talking about Bloomer and steer the conversation to another topic if I want my husband to get a good performance evaluation from this gentleman.

But Clarence wanted to keep chatting about Russia and Bloomer so he asked me what house do you think I grew up in Bloomer. What house you grew up in in Bloomer? What? I then replied that my family never spent much time in Bloomer. In fact we never ever stopped in Bloomer. We just drove down the main drag thru town on our way to somewhere else. But I declared that the few times we did drive thru town we always remarked that there was one house that surely stood out from all the rest white clapboard houses. It was that two story house that was painted a very odd shade of lavender like it was meant to be the Easter Bunny's residence.

That's when Clarence announced that that lavender house was his step dad's house and that's where he grew up in Bloomer! Oh, my gosh, I wanted to just crawl under the carpet because I obviously had stuck not one but both feet in my mouth. Oh, my golly, good luck Jack on your upcoming performance evaluation. I think I just blew it for you big time.

But Clarence said that he had been expecting me to give that response because everyone in Bloomer would tell him that that was a really strange color to paint a house but his stepdad never repainted the house. This event took place in 1980. I wonder if that house in Bloomer, Ohio is still that color. Anybody from Ohio know? If so, leave an anonymous comment below.

Later in the day I learned that Clarence graduated from high school in 1956 and that he met and married Sooki in Korea soon after high school when he was an Army GI stationed in Korea. Clarence told me that with my long dark hair I looked like one of those wild French Catholic girls from Russia. What? Wild French Catholic girls from Russia!

Yes, yes, replied Clarence. My stepdad warned me about all you wild French Catholic girls from Russia. He told me his stepdad said that the parents of those girls don't want them dating Protestants and he as a staunch Protestant Lutheran didn't want his stepson dating those Catholic girls. I listened to my stepdad and didn't he added.

And since this was typical back then, not too many people from Bloomer married people from Russia. Now how funny and parochial!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

The Boy From Anna, Ohio

Here I am at Anne Guerin's birthday party at the Fairfax Country Club having some fun with the boy from Anna, Ohio. The first time we met I said I was originally from a small town in Ohio. He said I'm originally from a small town in Ohio. Then I said I'm from such a small town in Ohio that I'm dead sure you have never ever even heard of it. He then said well please tell me the name of the town and when I said Russia, Ohio he said yes I have heard of i! My high school is Anna and we played your high school in basketball and baseball in the fifties and sixties. Then we both marveled at what a small world it is sometimes.

This nice gentleman from Anna is a retired Air Force Colonel and Air Force Pilot and his name is Gerald Westerbeck. I know that some of you Ohio folks must know some of the Westerbecks in and around Anna, Ohio. Gerald Westerbeck even spent many years in the Air Force stationed at Wright Patterson Air Force Base close to Dayton, Ohio. After retiring from the Air Force Gerald has gone on to a military consulting career with Logistics Management Institute and he currently lives in Oakton, Virginia.

We started talking about how we keep up with the news from back home in Ohio. Gerald said he always reads the Sidney Daily News, especially the sports page and the obituary page, Me too, me too, I replied. I just might recognize a name in the obituary column I exclaimed. And then I told him that I had hoped he would be at Anne's party because I had printed out a website for him that I knew he would enjoy reading on the internet: the very famous Fish Report. I showed him my printout and pointed out all the neat newspapers and Ohio sports sites listed on the front page of the Fish Report. I then pointed out all the cool sites about Russia, Ohio and St. Remy Catholic Church on the front page of the Fish Report. Why my golly you can even go to my blog from the Fish Report! It is listed as Joann's Blog.

Then the boy from Anna High School and the girl from Russia Local High School decided to pretend that they were really in a rage over the last Anna-Russia basketball game. So we took two dinner knives from the table and pretended to stick it to each other.
The only problem was that we were standing there forever while my husband figured out how to take our photo with my camera! Just look at us! Oh, goodness gracious, this is going on way too long. Wouldn't you hate to be a movie star and keep posing for all those pics?

I was ready to hand the camera to my girlfriend Joyce who was sitting at the table looking at us and laughing out loud. I also admit that a few other folks at this birthday brunch were looking at us strangely and wondering what in the world was going on with those two and the knives! Judy Westerbeck who grew up in Dayton and is Gerald's wife was one of those folks giving us very strange looks.

Finally my husband Jack said that he had figured out my camera and had taken a couple of pics of Gerald and I so we could relax now and put down our knives.

And so we did.

Note: Come back here tomorrow and I will tell you about Jack's first boss in Virginia who was from Bloomer, Ohio. That's right, there is a town in Ohio called Bloomer and it always makes me think of lady's bloomers, ahem, underpants.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Anne Guerin's Birthday Party At Fairfax Country Club

This past Sunday Jack and I were delighted to attend our dear friend Anne's 60'th birthday party at the Fairfax Country Club in Fairfax. Jack and I have known Anne since meeting her while we were living in Germany in the early 70's. Anne's mother was a Berliner who left Berlin when Hitler came to power in the 1930's. Anne's mother returned to Germany after the war to be an interpreter at The Nuremberg Trials being held at the Dachau Concentration Camp.

In 1979 Jack and I were lucky to reconnect with Anne when we discovered that the home we wanted to purchase in Burke Centre was just up the path from Anne's home. In fact Jack and I with our realtor signed the contract at Anne's kitchen table. Through the years we met both of Anne's parents when they visited Anne. Anne's mother was German but Anne's father was French and a French Catholic Orthodox priest. Anne's native tongue is both French and German. She was born in Paris, France but later grew up in French Morocco and of course, her mother was German.

In the photo above Anne is standing behind her oldest son, Patrick Byrnnes who works for the Homeland Security Department. Patrick is holding in his arms Anne's first grandchild who was born this past September. Isn't she adorable!

And here is Natalie Byrnnes, Patrick wife, who grew up in Richmond, Virginia but now lives in Northern Virginia. Natalie says Richmond is the "old south" while Northern Virginia is a northern metropolitan community with a very diverse population.

It is always a joy to be invited to attend the Sunday buffet at the Fairfax Country Club. The freshly made omlettes are a big draw but there must be at least 100 other food selections on the buffet menu.

The young man in the blue shirt is Anne's second son, Michael Byrnnes. Shhhhhhhh! Don't tell anyone but things look very serious between Michael and the pretty girl sitting next to him. These two have been commuting back and forth from Richmond, VA to Albany, NY to date each other.

We have loved seeing Anne's Oakton neighbors at her parties. In this photo are Fred and Isamu who live near Anne. Fred also owns a vacation home in Rehobath Beach so he enjoyed talking to my girlfriend Joyce Blakeslee who retired to Rehobath Beach from Fairfax---what restaurants at the beach are your favorites? Now look below at the man seated in the middle of this group. Some of you Ohio folks may recognize him because he graduated from Anna High School in Shelby County, The same county that I am from in Ohio. And he was stationed for many years at Wright Patterson Air Force Base in Fairborn, Ohio. Come back here tomorrow and I will tell you all about the boy from Anna, Ohio.

The man in the middle----the boy from Anna, Ohio.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Golly! What A Birthday Weekend!

Little Jack has Big Jack explain winding up the Paris globe to play music.
We celebrated Jack's birthday on both Friday and Saturday and then
celebrated a friend's birthday at the Fairfax Country Club on Sunday.
Golly! What a Big Birthday Weekend!

You know, I think even the Birthday balloons look wiped out.
I'll post later pics of Sundays big birthday event.
In the meantime please lead me to a cup of coffee!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Too Much Birthday Party

This Is How Little Jack Looked After The Birthday Celebration On Saturday.
This Is How Big Jack Looked After The Birthday Celebration On Saturday.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Little MO Farmer Now On Medicare!

This Little MO Farmer Is Now On Medicare!
Jackie Lee Shipley Turns 65 Today.
Happy Birthday, Jack!
Lots of Love From,
Jeanine, and Joann
He was first in his Hale High School class in 1963.

He volunteered to be an Army GI after completing college at
Central Missouri State University,
the home of the mules and jennies.

And look below...........Jack became Mr. Cool in Seattle, WA in his red convertible Oldsmobile.
They don't make 'em like that any more------
Jack and Oldsmobiles!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Skywatch Friday = Lake Manassas Golf Club

Skywatch Friday = Lake Manassas Golf Club
Route #29 South of Manassas
Sunny Weather and Blue Skies
Here is a reflection of Jack in the window of the dining room
The Brass Canyon Restaurant.
Those are million dollar homes in the background along the greens.

There is an actual canyon in front of the front door of the country club.
Tiger Woods played a PGA tournament here a couple of years ago.

Here's someone playing alone to perfect their game.
Now go visit some great Skywatch Friday memes by clicking here:

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

News Flash: Folks From Russia in Haiti

News Flash: Some missionaries from Russia, Ohio were in Haiti on missionary work when the earthquake hit last week. Click here to watch a video of their experience of being stranded for three days at the airport in Haiti and how they finally managed to get out of the country and back to Russia, Ohio. Ed Borchers in the video was a lad on the farm next door to our farm in Russia, Ohio. Click here:

Monday, January 18, 2010

My World Tuesday = FARMALL Tractors

My World Tuesday = FARMALL Tractors
My Father Leo Gariety only owned and drove FARMALL tractors.
Don't even bother to bring a John Deere tractor onto one of his farms.
He didn't like those noisy John Deere "poppers"!
He liked FARMALL tractors.
The above photo was taken during the spring planting season of 1965.
Yours truly took this picture with her ten dollar Kodak camera.
My father is in the driver's seat.
My brother Harold is hanging onto the side of the tractor and my brother Carl is
behind the driver's seat.

Another Photo of My Father Leo Gariety Driving A FARMALL Tractor.
I think I took this photo during the summer of 1969 while home from teaching on Okinawa.
I know I took this photo with my 35 mm Pentex camera that I had bought in the PX at Kadena Air Base on Okinawa.

Oldest FARMALL Tractor Photo
Circa 1951-53
I don't know who took this photo of my brother Harold Gariety sitting on
this particular FARMALL tractor. This photo was taken on the big lawn that had a circle drive around the front of our dairy barn.
Notice all the white washed tree trunks alongside the gravel road that took you to either
Russia, Ohio or Versailles, Ohio.
Across the road was Floyd Monnin's farm and woods.
Harold used to walk home from baseball practice at Russia Local School by cutting
thru Floyd Monnin's farm.
My father wouldn't allow any of his sons to drive a car to school.
That was how to baby your kids!

Now please go visit some other great My World Tuesday memes by just clicking here:

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Skywatch Friday = Winter Skies = Dirty Dirty Snow

Skywatch Friday = Winter Skies = Dirty Dirty Snow
I Shot This View Straight From Our Front Door
Looking Down Our Private Drive
Our Neighbor's Home Across The Street
Backs To The Golf Course.
These Neighbor's Have Great Sunset Views of the Links.
This Old Dirty Snow Has Been Here Since December 19, 2009
When We Got 21 Inches of Snow
See The Sideyard of the House With Wrought Iron Fence
On The Left.
I Missed On The Day Of The Big Snow
What Would Have Made A Great and Unique Picture.
The Children Of Our Muslim Neighbors Made A Muslim Snowman.
Well, I Guess I Should Say A Muslim Snowwoman.
She Was Kneeling On The Ground Facing Their Front Door
Wearing A Muslim Robe And Head Scarf.
And For A Touch Of Little Girl Whimsy
The Muslim Snowwoman Was Wearing Pink Angel Wings On Her Back.
Everyone Who Drove By Slowed Down To Take A Good Look.
It Is Not Every Day Of The Week That You Meet A Muslim Snowwoman.
Ahh, Yes, More Dirty Dirty Snow
I Hate Dirty Dirty Snow.
Just Melt Out Of My Life.
Final Thought: Let's All Do Something Monetary For The People of Haiti.
Plus Keep Them In Our Thoughts and Prayers.
Now Please Go Visit Some Other Great Skywatch Friday Memes.

Funny Pictures: Number 1 and Number 2

Funny Picture Number 1
This was the Karras Family Christmas Card
I just about fell off my feet when I tore open the card
discovered my little Jack Aidan wearing nothing but a diaper
a big smile.
Funny Picture Number 2
When I uploaded this photo from Picassa this morning
something rather strange happened.
Little Jack turned into a caricature1
Notice how the hair curves down across his forehead.
Now how the heck did that happen?
If anyone know, leave a comment.
Now look further down and notice Jack's sweet lips.
Aren't they the most precious baby lips.
Blog bottom line: Grandma sure loves her little Jack

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

No Blogging Because.......

No Blogging Because................
Gee, I haven't blogged once since last Thursday. Why? Because I've come down with a terrible terrible cold that has left me totally wiped out for the last four days. I'll write again when I feel up to snuff. Meanwhile it is couch time with my favorite brave nurse in constant attendance: Jack.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Skywatch Friday = New Year's Morning Sunrise
January 1, 2010
Haymarket, Virginia
It was a pretty sunrise in the east from my breakfast room doorway looking towards Dickie's house where we celebrated New Years Eve the night before with a small group of friends. It was the type of New Years Party that I like. Start early at 7:00 P.M. with drinks and appetizers and end early at 10:00 P.M. so guests can walk home, change into their jammies and watch on TV the ball drop in Times Square in New York City. Then kiss your sweetheart and hop into bed at 12:10 P.M. So this is what greeted me as I opened the door to let in all the good new vibrations for 2010. I noticed that each photo shows the clouds in a different location on the horizon and with different shades of grey in the cloud formations. See above and below the changes. All three photos were taken in lest than a minutes so that was some fast moving changes in the new year skies. (I wonder how symbolic that is for predicting changes in our world this year.)

I liked the black outline of my doorlight in these photos and Dickie's house outlined in black. The sunrise was just beginning. Sunrise in Northern Virginia comes around 7:00 A.M. these early January mornings. The days are beginning to gain a minute of sunlight each day but it is coming at the end of each day. So right now the sun sets around 5:05 P.M. and then is totally dark by 5:25 P.M.
Well, that's it for this second Friday of 2010 Skywatch Friday post. Now please go visit lots of other wonderful Skywatch Friday bloggers around the world by clicking here:

And Happy New Year Everyone!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Last Day For Stocking Stuffers For Christmas
Jeanine Saved The Best For Last
What Is It?
The Label Says
Black Chocolate Stout Beer
brewed by the Brooklyn Brewery of New York
Well, my gosh, who knew that a chocolate stout had even been invented!
Not me.
Thanks, Jeanine and Bryan.
This will be a sweet treat for Valentine's Day if I can wait that long to try it.

Thirteen Day of Christmas Santa Photo Opt For Jack Aidan

Thirteenth Day of Christmas
Santa Photo Opt For Jack Aidan
Feast of the Epiphany

We Three Kings of Orient Are
Bearing Gifts
We Traveled A Far


Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Twelfth Day of Christmas Photo Ken Gariety Family

Twelfth Day of Christmas Photo
The Ken Gariety Family
This is a family that has an Ohio State Themed Room in their home.
I wonder which student will go to Ohio State like their Mother Ann.
I bet a lot of college applications are being filled out for Ohio State
since they won the Rose Bowl on New Years Day.
One more thing---this is the A Team Gariety family.
All names begin with A.
There is Austin 15, Allison 13, Audrey 11 and Alana 8.
Twelfth Day of Christmas Stocking Stuffer
a Chenin Blanc white wine from South Africa called Spier
which comes from the vineyards of the Cape of Good Hope.
I like that name Jeanine.
Cape of Good Hope.
Appropriate for the last of the Twelve Days of Christmas.
Thank you.
But tomorrow is the Feast of the Epiphany,
The 13'th or bakers dozen or extra day of Christmas
and tomorrow I have a big box to open.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Eleventh Day of Christmas Photo The Rosenbergers of Kansas City
This is Jack's First Cousin Donald Rosenberger
His Wife and Children and Grandchildren
Eleventh Day of Christmas Stocking Stuffer
From Our Jeanine
Two Winter Lagers From Sam Adams Brewery
Boston, MA

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Tenth Day of Christmas Photo Wedding Memories

Tenth Day of Christmas Photo Wedding Memories
Monnin / Hoying Wedding
You must click on the photo card to see these pics in greater detail. Which one is the Mother of the Bride? They all look so young! The lady in the white shawl is the Mother of the Bride and my
godchild Darlene Gariety Monnin. Darlene, you looked fabulous for your daughter's wedding in September of 2009. And Matt, you not only got a son-in-law but someone who bears your first name, Matthew. LOL!
Tenth Day of Christmas Stocking Stuffer From Jeanine and Bryan
A Maipe 2009 Bonarda Wine from Mendoza, Argentina
Maipe was the Lord of the Winds in Andean indian culture and this wine
comes from a vineyard at the foothills of the tall Andean Mountains of Argentina.
(Maybe I'll need to watch the movie Evita while sipping this wine and
sing Madonna's hit song Don't Cry For Me Argentina.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Ninth Day of Christmas Photo The Newlyweds

Ninth Day of Christmas Photo The Newlyweds
Matt and Amanda Hoying
This is the daughter of my godchild Darlene Gariety Monnin of Russia, Ohio. The couple were united in holy matrimony at St. Remys Catholic Church in Russia last September. They now reside in the home of my late brother Paul N. Gariety on Miller Road.

Ninth Day of Christmas Stocking Stuffer From Daughter Jeanine
A wine from the D.O. Montsant Region of Spain:
2007 Cann Blau
which is a blend of three grape varietals:
Mazuelo planted in sandy clay,
the Syrah planted in chalky soils,
Garnacha planted on slate.
(How do you grow grapes on slate? Beats me.)

What A Thrill

What A Thrill!
Ohio State Wins Rose Bowl Game
Go Buckeyes!
The Quote of the Game
Coach Tressell: Ohio State has the God damm best band in the land!
(I think this means I will need to keep the Ohio State fight song at the top of my
Playlist for a few more days. LOL!)

Friday, January 1, 2010

Ohio State Is Playing In The Rose Bowl Football Game In California!
Go Buckeyes!
To honor the Buckeyes football achievements in 2009 I've put two versions of
The Ohio State Fight Song at the top of my Playlist.
I also put my I Need A Hero song up there too.
Hoping a Buckeye will be a hero today and bring home the trophy to Ohio.
And for good measure I put my Miami University of Ohio Fight Song and Alma Mater
Up towards the top because many famous Buckeyes got their start at Miami U.
like Woody Hayes.
Miami University is known as the Cradle of Coaches for The Big Ten Teams.
News Flash: It is 8:25 and the game is over and Ohio State won! The new year is off to a great start.

Eighth Day of Christmas = New Years Day = Adorable Goff Baby

Eighth Day of Christmas = New Years Day = Adorable Goff Baby
This adorable baby is Noah Goff.
In this Christmas photo our friends new grandson is pictured with
his big brother Caleb Goff.
If you go to September 2008 posts on my blog you will find
photos of Noah's parents on their wedding day.
Eighth Day of Christmas Stocking Stuffer
A Spanish Wine
A 2008 Luzon Wine from Jumilla, Spain which
is a vineyard located southeast of Madrid

What will you do today?
Jack and I plan to watch The Rose Bowl Parade
Ohio State Play in The Rose Bowl Football Game
Go Buckeyes!