My father's name was Anton, his mothers name was Antonia and while in High School, I “inherited” the nickname Tony. The nickname has served me well and I seemed to have more friends when they could call me Tony rather than my given name of “Verlon”. With respect to my father, this picture shows a grandson, two great grandsons and me all answering to the name of Tony. We had a great time at this family reunion in Tomah, Wisconsin.
Sunday, February 27, 2011
Many people who lived in the Northern Virginia area and worked in Washington, D.C., some years ago, had cabins out in the Blue Ridge Mountains where they would spend the weekend. Our neighbors, the Johnson's had such a place that included this little barn. We enjoyed our visit with them at their cabin but other than taking this picture, didn't fully appreciate the little barn at the time. Was the ladder the only way to get to the “haymow”. Had I walked through the barn door, I wonder what I would have found. More interestingly, had I just listened, I wonder what I may have heard. I wonder....
Saturday, February 26, 2011
We had the priveledge of visiting the Washington Cathedral during the time the bells for the carillon were being installed. The carillon consists of 53 bells which were cast in Lounghborough, England. They were installed during the early 1960's and dedicated on September 22, 1963. The smallest bell of the carillon weighs 17 pounds. The largest weighs 24,000 pounds, or 12 tons, and measures eight feet, eight inches in diameter. The carillon is played via a keyboard and pedals, situated high in the Cathedral’s central tower (150 feet above the nave floor) and directly amid the bells. The keyboard controls a mechanical tracker system (similar to a tracker organ) that uses transmission wires to move the clappers. The bells remain stationary while a metal clapper strikes the inside of the casting.
Friday, February 25, 2011
Thursday, February 24, 2011
Wednesday, February 23, 2011
Tuesday, February 22, 2011
Monday, February 21, 2011
Pioneer Park was always a favorite of our children when we lived in Lincoln. We would picnic in the summer. sled in the winter and enjoy ourselves whenever we were there. . After moving away and coming back to the area to visit family, it was often on the agenda along with “Tasty In & Out”. Some of the excitement of getting back to Nebraska was demonstrated in this picture.
Sunday, February 20, 2011
The Kitones sang at the Kiwanis Ham Dinner this evening. It has become a tradition for Seward High School Girls basketball Coach Tom Tvrdy and his young son to sing one number (Soon and Very Soon) with us. They are shown at the left end of the group. Coach Tvrdy's team won their 70th consecutive game on Friday night and will go into the District tournament as the #1 Class B team in the State and ranked 3rd overall. We have great expectations for them.
While eating we visited with Tobin Beck(back of head shown) who spent several years (early 90's to around 2007) in the Washington D. C. area. In talking about where he lived, he asked if we were familiar with Burke. We told him all about Col. Silas Burke with whom he was very knowledgable as well as with the RR Museum. Great team in a small world.
Saturday, February 19, 2011
Friday, February 18, 2011
Nebraska opens its baseball season today by playing Texas in a tournament at San Marcos. One reason for optimism this year is the presence of Darin Erstad as a volunteer batting coach. Erstad's 14 year major league career brings a wealth of experience plus his personal drive to the team. He was probably as well know as the Cornhusker punter as a baseball player during his career at the University. Some years ago I joined a conversation where baseball came up. I proudly told of having played town team ball with Garland in the Blue Valley League and Seward in the Cornhusker league. The 3rd fellow in the conversation said, “I've got a son-in-law who plays baseball”. I asked where he played and he told me the Los Angles Angels- Darin Erstead. I didn't talk any more about my having played the game.
Thursday, February 17, 2011
This is a follow up to yesterday's page and shows the family as the Kennedy cortege had moved on into Arlington Cemetery and we were walking back to our vehicle. The facial expressions partially show the emotion of the time. (Carolyn was caught in the middle of a sneeze). Did you notice that Jon has on a white shirt and a necktie. He didn't have school that day but “dressed up” to go down to the west end of Memorial Bridge to see the Cortege. I'm sure we as parents didn't “require” it but he did it on his own out of Respect. This may sound foreign in todays world but 50 years ago it was recognized that you put on your best clothes out of Respect for Special Occasions, and you acted accordingly. I'm not sure but suspect that Jon still puts on a white shirt and tie when he teaches his Sunday School class in Virginia. It may not be necessary but it isn't all bad either. We could use more Respect in the world today.
Wednesday, February 16, 2011
We moved to the Washington, D.C. Area in the summer of 1962 when the Kennedy Administration had brought a youthful vigor to the Country. Though the job that took us there was non political, we all felt the enthusiasm of the Administration. President Kennedy's assassination was a tremendous loss to the Nation, the World and a personal loss to most of us. We watched the TV coverage of the long lines that passed through the Capitol as his body lie in state; saw the Navy Sea Chanters sing the Navy Hymn (Eternal Father Strong to Save); and watched the very impressive funeral services. At the appropriate time, we loaded our four children in our station wagon and drove the short distance from our home to the area near the west end of Memorial Bridge. It was from that vantage point that we watched the funeral cortege pass by on its way to Arlington Cemetery. My picture caught the horse drawn cortege with the flag draped casket but could never capture to emotion of the moment.
Tuesday, February 15, 2011
As we had breakfast on Valentines Day, Elaine and I watched George and Barbara Bush on the Morning Show reminisce over old letters they had exchanged during the years before they were married. While I drank my coffee and read the newspaper, Elaine slipped away and returned with a Whitman Chocolate Candy box holding letters I had written to her during our “courting” days. They were not in the same romantic class as the Bush letters but after nearly 2 years of “Dear Elaine” I did write “Dearest Elaine”. My spelling was atrocious and subject matter was such, they could hardly be called love letters. I told of brother Jerry stepping on a piece of wire and having to get a Tetanus shot; of being snowbound and not getting mail for a week; the whole family's glee when sister Vivian got her engagement ring (We all liked Eddy); and, why I couldn't write much because there was corn to cultivate. It must have been a case of Divine Intervention since it certainly wasn't my literary persuasion that led to over 61 years (so far) of “Happily Married Bliss”.
Monday, February 14, 2011
A farmer and his prized bull. This was a farmer before they were called “producers”. The term producer tends to imply using GMO seeds, chemical fertilizers, insecticides, pesticides, and all the necessary purchased inputs to raise and market grain crops. We call that production agriculture. A farmer by comparison used crop rotations with legumes and grasses; had diversified farms that included cattle, hogs, chickens, and spent years conserving and improving the quality of their soil and the quality of their livestock. This farmer spent over 35 years building a small herd of Polled Herebford cattle from a beginning back in the early 40's with the purchase of a few Registered Purebred Polled Herefords of the Domino strain. What you see resulted from his good judgement as to which animals were kept for breeding stock and which were sent to market. This picture is not only of a prized bull but a prized farmer; he was my Dad.
Sunday, February 13, 2011
There is something about the positions of the people in this picture that makes you wonder if they would be more at home in a Nebraska cornfield than on a Maryland Chesapeake Bay beach. The big guy wore a tee shirt to keep from getting sunburned but didn't realize that the tops of his feet were most vulnerable as was the top of his head with a close crew cut. Despite their lack of familiarity with the water, the kids had a great time with their cousins from Lincoln, NE.
Saturday, February 12, 2011
Friday, February 11, 2011
Thursday, February 10, 2011
Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Our first years of living back in Northern Virginia were a tremendous change for our family. We did a lot of sightseeing as shown on this picture at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington Cemetery. The Capitol, Washington Monument and the Jefferson Memorial all show in the background. The “little guy" grew up there and became so well adjusted to the area that he and his family took advantage of the opportunity to go back after having lived in many other locations around the country.
Tuesday, February 8, 2011
Monday, February 7, 2011
Saturday, February 5, 2011
Friday, February 4, 2011
Computers were a bit of a novelty to grandchildren, Tony (age 6) and Maggie (age 4) when they came to visit in the spring of 1995. They came back from Indiana to visit soon after we were home from spending a few weeks at Victoria Palms in Donna, Texas and a train trip through the Copper Canyon in Mexico. As we read about such visits in my Journals, we can appreciate some of the events more now than at the time they actually happened. Tony was very much the big brother explaining to Maggie all about the computer and really looked after his little sister (He still does). Maggie was just what you would expect as demonstrated by my Journal entry that, “She knows more words than what she knows their meaning---but she comes close”. Their sleeping quarters were apart from our bedroom but Maggie would wake up early and come crawl in bed with us. She would then set on my lap as I read the morning paper. One morning the sun had come up as we walked out into the living room and she asked, “Who turned the light on?” Was that a teaching moment or what??