Category Archives: Things

The Doll from Aunt Ginny

I’m finally thinking of letting go of a folk-angel doll that my Aunt Ginny gave me one Christmas. It was definitely her style, not mine. We kept it with our Christmas things and put it up each year after we received it. It went more with the style of our Christmas things than with our general everyday eclectic-but-not-folksy style.

Aunt Ginny died shortly after Christmas 2015 and I didn’t put the doll back with the Christmas things after that, but kept her on my office sofa.

At the moment it is in the give away box, but I will probably transfer it to a Christmas box when I finish packing everything up for the season.

Some Books from My Past

I’m finally getting to that “To Blog About” box in the closet on my side of the study. I found a few books that I am surprised I brought back from my mom’s house because I either have no memory of reading them or just plain didn’t like them much. I left many that I fondly recalled.

This is Maggie Muggins by Mary Grannan

This book must have been a gift. I probably read it more than once, but don’t really remember much. Actually I don’t remember it at all. Looking at the first paragraph, it seems like I should have liked it more than I did, but maybe I was too old when I got it.

Surprise in the Tree by Sara Asheron, Illustrated by Susan Perl

I do remember this book and I remember liking it enough to read several times. It was likely one of the first books I read by myself. I remember the illustrations and the cat named Penny who liked to get up to mischief.

Treasury of Christmas Stories ed. Ann McGovern

I think I got this as a hand-me-down from my cousin Cindy. I remember none of the stories so I suspect I never read them. While some of the authors (Edgar Allen Poe, Marchette Chute) are familiar, the rest are not. And the titles! Lord Octopus Went to the Christmas Fair, A Miserable, Merry Christmas). Another book I don’t know why I kept.

The House on East 88th Street by Bernard Waber

I definitely remember this one and read it many times. I think I also checked other Lyle, Lyle books out of the library. This copy was from a book subscription my parents got for me through the Weekly Reader. There’s even a musical based on the book that I watched part of a while back.

Sir Kevin of Devon by Adelaide Holl, Illustrated by Leonard Weisgard

Another Weekly Reader Children’s Book Club book, Sir Kevin of Devon was never a favorite. I barely remember reading it — perhaps because it was a long poem and not prose.

The Adventures of Robin Hood adapted by Eleanor Graham Vance, Illustrated by Jay Hyde Barnum

Likely another gift that I don’t remember reading, although it was probably my first introduction to Robin Hood.

Taro and the Tofu by Masako Matsuno, Illustrated by Kazue Mizumura

Another Weekly Reader Children’s Book Club selection. I remember having this book, but not being very interested in it. I think I will give it a read today.


I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I am grateful to my parents for buying me so many books as a kid. These books helped define who I would grow up to be, even if I don’t remember reading them.

The hair of the cat

Somewhere among my belongings, either in boxes from my mom’s house or in something I already had in Maryland I found a formerly white envelope with the words Cinder Patrick, 1 year written on the front in red or dark pink ink. Inside was a small thatch of black fur.

Cinder was my second cat — my father, a self-described cat-hater, brought her home to me when I was 13. She was a one-person cat and everyone else hated her. We loved each other.

She lived through three moves, from my parent’s house to my first apartment, to Pittsburgh with Dean and me and finally to Alexandria where she died at the ripe old age of 17.

Sorry, Cinder, but this memory is going in the trash — the fur might go in the garden though.