Friday, July 20, 2007


A cousin recently sent me a copy of this poem. It was written by another "first cousin once removed" for his older brother, Bob. I requested a copy of the poem when I heard it read on a DVD by brother Bob - thought I'd really like a hard copy in my files. Now that I have the hard copy in hand, I think it far too nice to stash away in a file somewhere. Before doing that, I just want to share it. It's one of those Shock WV legacies.


One night in December
A long time ago
When the earth was cold
And covered with snow
As a prisoner at dawn
From his warm bed is torn
On this night of all nights
I chose to be born.
Who then that night
For the doctor would go
Walking for miles
In the cold and the snow?

I remember our home
Was saddened one day
A terrible sickness
It was so they say
And then on the day
That the ambulance came
Who didn’t hear
When they called out his name?

I wanted to cry
And I felt so alone
When the doctors all said
That he’d never come home,
But I couldn’t believe
That he would die there.
And who was it for
That I said my first prayer?

How was it I went
To that hill every day
To look at the cars
On the road far away
And who took me there
To fly the big kite
And taught me to do
My arithmetic right?

When I’d misbehave
With some foolish fun
And my parents got made
Who would grab me and run?
And who was it
That raced me to bed every night
And brought me some toys
To fill with delight,
And even at times
His meals he forsook
To save enough money
To buy me a book?

To school I would go
Some young men will say
But who for the books
And tuition would pay?
I knew a young man
Who slept in a jail
In a small college town
By the name of Glenville;
He worked for a farmer
His money to earn
And who was this kid
With a hunger to learn?

When my mother died
Who sent me to school
And treated me gently
When I was a fool?
Who bought me a coat
To help keep me warm
And loved me and spoiled me
Since the day I was born?

A young man returned
From the war once to find
That the killing and carnage
Had messed up his mind
No one seemed to care
That for them he had fought
Now that he was home
And in trouble a lot
Compassion he needed
But nobody would
When he needed so badly
Who understood?

I just can’t imagine
How it would have been
My life as a kid
If it wasn’t for him
But I’m sure there are many
Who feel that way
Whose lives he has touched
In some kind of way
In this whole world I’m sure
There isn’t another,
A man among men,
Bob Miller!

Vernon D Miller
July 1974

Friday, July 13, 2007


Angel #17 - not much of an angel baby anymore...but still all angel Abe from here. just have to wait.

I was trying to hurry little table runners along and scurry was disastrous. After taking two or three seams out, I decided to pile it up for the day. Two days later it went smoothly enough. The runners are pieced and off to Nines in today's mail. But don't hurry, love, we can wait until you're ready for the quilting.

This week has brought good rain and a break in the heat. The garden is happy and I am tempted to coulnt my canning jars before they seal. I even bought sugar this week for jam. How's that for hope! Nix on the low-sugar; sugar free tries. Real jam spread thinner will do as well and more often turn out like it should.

We had a very pleasant Miller reunion. I took a dozen postcards to the auction, they all sold, so now I need to replenish my supply. Alas, I have 12 mocked up (with heat n bond) and stabilizer enough for only half that. Guess I can be choosy and get JoAnne on the line for finishing out more in due time. No hurry, it's just something I'd rather do than work, you know.

Meanwhile back to the old exercise routine and the cookstove. DH is down picking cabbage and onions for soup, even as we speak.
NOTE: That head of cabbage weighed in at 9 lbs...took 1/8 of the head for a large pot of soup.

Saturday, July 07, 2007


Happy Birthday, Dear Sis

Today's the day for the G.C.Miller family reunion. Cooking is simpler than usual for me - yeast rolls are in the works and DH dug some new potatoes to go with green beans (home canned, as the new ones aren't bearing yet). I may throw in some fresh cooked squash. DSis is bringing chicken and cookies. That sounds like round enough menu for the two of us.

I look forward to the reunion as it is a once-a-year chance to hug some very dear folk. Today is DSis's birthday so that will be a special hug, now won't it. Lot's of good food, an auction which may have an heirloom or two included, a little singing and sometimes, even some live guitar, madolin, fiddle playing. What's not to like about that!

And there will be a tinge of sadness. How can you go to your Mom's family reunion and not miss your mommy? Also a sweet cousin lost her husband this spring and two dear uncles may not be well enough to attend. Reason enough to share and be grateful for those extra hugs!

Guess it's time to go scrub those taters...

Sunday, July 01, 2007


Most folks get vacationitis when they've worked hard and long and need a good break. My case is the after-the-fact version. Bags are unpacked. I just cut up the stale steak rolls to soak overnight and bake into pudding tomorrow. The laundry will also wait for tomorrow. My heart is still in TN with all those happy scenes, my bones are still on the road and my head is still in a fog. This might be a good place to sign out...

What a wonderful week we had! The cabins were the nicest we've ever had: Top of Townsend is just a hop away from Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge, but well secluded. We managed to avoid the tourist race for the most part. We did drive over to Cade's Cove one day. It was our second visit there...we like the atmosphere and were able to see deer, turkeys and a black bear this time, which was nice. Otherwise, we just hung around visiting between kin and let younger bones do the tubing and hiking.

Evening meals were pitch-ins mainly with plenty of fare for an army (a Teel reunion trait). The second night a family friend provided T-Bones and desserts for everyone (53 minus a few who requested chicken). What a spread! The picnic area where we met for supper was a bit crowded, but I didn't hear any complaints. After supper on Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday evenings, we sang for spell. It was great four-part harmony and especially tender for this GM when those hymns were led by grandsons. Singing is a precious heritage, I think; and my heart leaps up to see children and grandchildren continuing to enjoy that tradition.

(I still remember the time when my grown children were visiting and sang late into the night...I was recovering from surgery, I think...anyway; I retired early and they sang me to sleep. It's a lovely memory.)

We always say this is for the children. And oh, it is good to see those cousins build relationships with each reunion. But I am sure they could not have more pleasure than we have watching them. They hiked, tubed, made flip-flops and wallets out of duct tape and tie-dyed shirts. The second generation guided scrapbook making sessions which produced lovely appreciation scrapbooks for each of the first generation Teels. One of the highlights of the week is always the talent show. The elders abandoned the youngsters this year, but the cousins had no trouble filling the bill, believe me. A lot of talent - a whole lot of talent - entertained and amused us for the evening. From violin solos, to Shakespeare recitations, to be-bop, to movie themes, to hilarious skits. I look forward to the talent show more than the food, really!

It was extra nice to have a dear friend join us this year. When I hugged her at church this morning I had to admit it was going to pretty hard to be separated from her sweet presence. (One granddaughter had named her the queen of num-nums - she is dear to us all)

It may take a day or two for the V-itis to wear off. Meanwhile, we'll deal with the left-overs, do the wash, clean the Barn a bit and try not to scratch the bug bites. After that we'll seriously delve into THREE four-inch binders FULL of ancestry information collated by our DD's DMIL over the last months.

We have been so blessed!!!