Archive for the ‘Places’ Category


Every year, on the fourth Sunday in August, the little country church my family attended while I was growing up has a Homecoming.

It’s not like it used to be when we were little. Back then, Homecoming was an all-day affair, with Sunday School and Church services in the morning, followed by one of the most unbelievable potluck dinners you’ve ever seen, spread out on tables on the side lawn (you know church ladies can cook!), then followed by an afternoon service with guests from neighboring country churches coming to eat, sing, and fellowship with our little congregation.

These days, the church stands empty 364 days a year, but we still have a small Homecoming service on the fourth Sunday in August. All the folks who grew up in and around this church that are still able, show up. So many of the congregation that was attending when we were small have passed on, so I’m glad that there are even a few that still attend. This year, we had 27 in attendance. We lost one member right after last year’s Homecoming, so it was sad to not have him and his family there any more. And my cousin that used to do the bookkeeping for the church was unable to attend this year — we missed her, too.

The building is still holding up quite well. My sister and my dad take care of it pretty good. The bathrooms are old-fashioned outhouses out back — yes, the ones with the wooden benches with holes in them! My dad was really proud of himself for getting them cleaned out for this year’s Homecoming. They get lots of wasp nests in them!

It looks like the sign could be repainted. I can’t even count how many times that sign has been replaced over the years!

Ron Smith and his wife, Janet, always host the event for us. Ron leads the service and the singing, and Janet (in the middle), and Debbie on the guitar, perform special numbers for us every year. Without them, I don’t think Homecoming would be much of an event.

There’s a piano, but we can’t use it because it’s so out of tune, and we don’t pay to have it tuned, because the humidity would only make it unusable again right away, and since we only meet once a year, we just don’t bother.

Jerry and Margie, sisters from the area, attend just about every year. Their parents used to be members here, and I have such fond memories of all of them. (They’re quilters, too!) That’s my Daddy in the background that they were talking to.

And this lady right here . . . this dear, dear woman . . . Mary Ann Teter Jenkins . . . SHE is the lady that introduced my parents to each other, way back on December 11, 1951.

If not for her, I would probably not be sitting here writing all this! Isn’t that a crazy thought?

My sister and I asked her how she’s getting along, and she answered: “I ain’t worth a shit these days!” Oh, how I love her! Haha!

So Homecoming is once again over, until the fourth Sunday in August next year. I know we can’t go back to having it like it was in the “good ol’ days”, but I’m glad that we’re still having it at all. The little country churches are going by the wayside, so it’s always good to see one that is still being kept up and used, even if only once a year.

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The Vintage House

A couple weeks ago, I gathered up all the quilts for my book, swindled my sister into joining me (and bringing along lots of props), and we drove down to Overland Park, Kansas, to The Vintage House, to do a photo shoot for the upcoming book.

The Vintage House is THE cutest little place. So cozy and inviting, decorated in such darling ways! The owners rent the house out for all sorts of events, like bridal and baby showers, luncheons, and . . . photo shoots!

I’ll give you a look inside some of the rooms in the house, and you might also get a glimpse of some of the quilts that will be in the book!

This cute little room is just off the front entryway:


For the photo shoot, my sister and I brought lots of props — family things, and things that belonged to our mother — to personalize the shots a bit more. We rearranged furniture and set up our own props for the shots you’ll see when the book comes out. In this one, we substituted some of the items on the table for a framed photo of Dale and Hazel after their wedding reception.


Trust me, the photos in the book will be much nicer than the rough ones I took on my iPad with no flash. Aaron Leimkuehler did all the shots, and they’re fabulous — I’m so excited for you to see them in the book!

We set up little vignettes all over the house for the various projects. Here’s one we did in the kitchen:


The tea towels hanging on the end of the table were made by Hazel.

Here’s some more shots of the cuteness that is this kitchen. A rack of dishes, at the ready for events held at the house:


Silverware, etc. — and look how they’ve used an old chicken feeder to hold utensils on the wall! There are oodles and oodles of cute decorating ideas in this house.


Here’s the way the dining room looked before we rearranged for our shots:


And here’s Aaron, carefully setting up a shot with the quilts and some of our own props:


And here’s some of the mess we made in between — quilts and props scattered everywhere:


This house is even adorable on the outside. We did some shots outdoors as well — there were just too many cute options!

The light was not good on the front porch because of the time of day we were shooting, but I took a couple shots just to show you the decorations they had out for Christmas.



We set up a shot of the Hazel’s Diary quilt hanging on the back porch railing. I wanted to get that fabulous old washing machine in the picture!


The final shots have all been chosen for the book, and I can hardly wait for you to see the quilts, and all these wonderful photos. The release date has been rescheduled for next April, but rest assured I will be keeping you posted on the progress.

If you’re interested in seeing more of the The Vintage House — and why wouldn’t you? it’s so darling — please visit their blog HERE, or like them on FaceBook HERE. And if you’re in that area, and looking for a cute little venue for a bridal or baby shower, or some other event, consider The Vintage House. I highly recommend it!

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September 24, 1954

Dale came up this morn & we went to Macon & got 2 linoluems & window shades. Went to his house for dinner, then laid our linoleums & came back by Bakers & got some hamburger & stuff & fixed supper at my house. After the dishes were done we went to show at Bevier.

Sounds like a full day. And they’re moving right along on house preparations. That’s good, because the wedding is only 9 days away!

Baker’s is the little local grocery store in Bevier, Missouri. You can read more about it HERE.

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August 30, 1954

We went over the Royal Gorge Bridge this morn. On to Pueblo to see Edith & Jap & Wanita. Ate dinner at Edith’s. Got into Kan. this aft. & tonite we’re staying at O.K. Court in Garden City, Kan. Bye

Surely Hazel got excited about going over the Royal Gorge Bridge? What an exciting and terrifying adventure that must have been.

They evidently didn’t linger long, and are visiting some more folks along the way. I’m not sure who Edith, Jap, and Wanita are, but I think they’re relatives.

They made pretty good time today and are now back in Kansas, so they’re getting closer to home. Vern might have driven some extra miles today to make up for yesterday’s incident.

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August 29, 1954

Sun. – Saw Mormon Temple this morn. We’re up in the mountains today again. Staying in Poncha Springs, Colo. tonite. I’ll be glad to get home. The car got real hot today & we got about 10 miles in 3 hrs. Daddy was tore up.

OK, so the car overheating has slowed them down some, I’m sure. This has to be messing with Vern’s sightseeing schedule!

Here’s a picture of Hazel and Puz in Colorado. It sort of looks like a middle-of-nowhere waiting-for-the-car-to-cool-down bored-children-on-vacation photo, doesn’t it?


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August 28, 1954

We got to Salt Lake City tonite & are staying at the Chauteau Motel. Went to a beach at the lake. We did’nt go in. I didn’t even get out of the car. Wrote to Dale when I got back.

Yep, I’d say Hazel’s a bit tired of the trip, and just wants to get home. But they’re still sightseeing their way across the country, even if she’s not happy about it!

I wonder what tomorrow’s adventures will be?

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August 27, 1954

Came thro desert most all day today. It was real hot. Got to Las Vegas tonite. Staying at the Emerald Motel. Me & Mom washed out some things. Want to get to Salt Lake City tomorrow night. I’m tired. Bye.

Vern sure has planned a route for them to see as much as possible! This is Day 12 of their trip so far.

Staying at the Emerald Motel in Vegas sounds ritzy, but I’m sure this was before the Emerald became very ritzy.

They’d better get a good night’s rest — they have over 400 miles to go tomorrow!

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August 26, 1954

We got to Fresno this aft. & went to Hermans & Ouida’s. He helped us find a cabin (got a real nice one) & then we had a Chinese dinner. Aft. watched T.V. & talked. Its after 12. Wrote to Dale, tonite – as always.

Hazel doesn’t mention going through San Francisco, so it must not have been memorable enough for her. I think she’s tired of traveling!

Herman and Ouida must be friends or relatives they’ve stopped to visit with.

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August 25, 1954

Went thro the Redwoods today. They’re real big. Went tho the trees of mystery & thro a tree house. Got Dale a mug. Were’ staying at Laytonville, Calif. tonite. Going on to San Francisco in the morn. We’re about 150 mi. away.

If they went through the redwoods today, they were not the redwoods in Sequoia National Park, although some of Mildred’s pictures are labeled Sequoia National Park. They didn’t get that far south from Oregon to end up at Laytonville by going through that park. So while I’m a little confused about their route, they’re still covering some ground on this trip, and here’s a couple pictures of them with the redwoods. Mildred has labeled these photos Sequoia National Park, so these pictures may not be from this day in their trip, but are from some point on their travels during this vacation.

This one is hard to see, but it’s the family, minus Donald because he’s taking the picture, standing in front of their car, parked in front of some redwood trees. Left to right, it’s Mildred, Hazel, Larry, and Vern. Mildred’s shoes crack me up! And she’s wearing jeans! Highly unusual for her.


This one is also very difficult to see, but it’s Donald, standing in front of a huge redwood tree.


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August 24, 1954

Left Esther’s & Ira’s this morn. at 8:00. Got to Roseburg Oregon tonite. We’re staying at the Pheasant motel. Its real nice. Didn’t see too much today. I’m tired. I’ll be glad when we get home. Wrote to Dale tonite.

They’re headed home, and Hazel seems ready for the trip to be over.

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