Monday, March 29, 2010


Joseph, Daniel, Jacob, Paul, John & Abraham

I had Nina pose this picture as a counterpart to The Miller Uncles. It's just too much a coincidence NOT to reflect on the beautiful grandsons who are growing into fine young men, like their great uncles.

I choose now to give them one word descriptions (left to right): JOE - the worker, DAN - the preacher, JACOB - the naturalist, PAUL - the thinker, JOHN, the inventor and ABE - the apple of everyone's eye.

Friday, March 26, 2010



What is good for the goose is good for the gander, so there needs to be a sequel to “All about Aunts.” It’s only fair. And we have the perfect picture to accompany the memories. Again, thoughts are but snippets of childhood recollection and later reflection; but here goes.

The “all in a row” photo has been an all time favorite snapshot. Such handsome men! Did Grandma Oe’s heart leap up every time she looked at it? Mine does still.

Uncle Gale – he was oldest and lived closest to Grandma and Grandpa Miller, so naturally memories of him are plentiful. The quintessential teacher (for close to a century), I often pause to regard his curiosity, intellect and kindness. All of those attributes were expanded by his counterpart - our ever kind and gentle Aunt Ruth. I do suppose Uncle Gale encouraged me to be good as much as anyone in life, by his generous praise. And his most frequent greeting at Miller Reunions was a smile, a hug and a gentle, “I love you.” Quite a man, that one!

Uncle Orbert – what I know best of Uncle Orbert, is how much one sister (my Mom - Aunt Jessie) loved him. She once told how he liked to come in from farm work, wash up, put on a clean shirt and bake a cake. I think him particularly handsome and a good match with pretty Aunt Bonnie, whom he adored.

Uncle David – he looked most like Grandpa Grover to me, though smaller in stature. One time when he’d flown in to visit family and was at our house on Newhouse Drive, he inspected my hands for any sign of arthritis … how significant of his concern for Aunt Bonnie and care for others. He was a valiant heritage keeper; working with wood, preaching, always industrious. Our David dropped by to see him one time while traveling in Arizona, he so enjoyed talking with Uncle David and took some of good photos for us to cherish. Pretty cool.

Uncle Bon – he so often talked, with a distinctly different voice and that little half smile, like he had some great secret afoot. Like the others, he never stopped learning or creating good conversation. Personally, I think his secret was Aunt Janet – what a beauty he reeled in there! And how could I forget our little do-si-do to the tune of family bluegrass players at the Family Reunion … I can well imagine that was the only public dancing either of us ever did; and I'm so glad we did it!

Uncle Corley – such a practical, down to earth man, who contributed so richly to life for all his kin. I loved his laugh, and the pleasure he took in people and his gentle insight. Several pieces of his woodcraft hang around the Barn to keep me in touch with his warmth. And he, along with the rest, chose his wife well. Corley and Justine … it’s hard to say one without the other. Remembering his wedding day, he smiled with happily brimming eyes saying, “that was a good day.” How touching.

Uncle Bly – was everyone’s sweetheart. Youngest, stalwart and handsome, it was pretty easy for young nieces to develop a near crush on him. But I’m glad, glad, glad he chose Mavis. Our Craig reminds me of Uncle Bly – affectionate with a good sense of humor. I especially enjoy the memory of feeling petite in Uncle Bly’s big bear hug and hearing his deep voice rumble a greeting.

There you have it…hardly ALL about uncles, but perhaps enough to kick-start random memories of your own.