Saturday, May 15, 2010


15 May 2010, Saturday – Today is my father’s mother’s birthday. She would be 110 years old; she lived to be 100  I have been thinking about her throughout the day. I took a few minutes to think about how I was remembering her, Nana RING, and I looked through my desk drawer and found several rings and put them all on, the ones that would fit, on the fingers they would fit on. I think I am like Nana in several respects. My life is in flux right now. There are a lot of things up in the air. The big thing I have especially been working over the past 2 weeks is to clean house. I have been doing more homework for school at the community college than I have been doing housework lately. Nana was ever working on her home, organizing, catching up with paperwork – it was an ongoing challenge. I was privileged to spend time living with Nana on several occasions in my adult life. She shared with me how she was trying to get things set up in her life, to run a smooth household, to keep up with things, how she managed her health (congestive heart failure), and preserving her family history (mostly in her head with stories ) We put down some of the stories, got some pictures marked, re-established contact with some cousins, and enjoyed caring about family together. Nana and Pa were married for 42 years and at that time they had 42 descendants. She said that she and Pa would pray for each of them by name every night. That touches my heart. I shared with her a poem, “I Said a Prayer for You Today,” and assured her that though she felt like there was a lot she could not go and do (go to Africa and be a missionary, like one of her grandsons), that her service in her prayer life was making a difference, and that we needed and appreciated that. I know that she still loves her family. I still love her.

In this major upheaval in getting my apartment ready for re-inspection (I flunked the first one) Nana has been in my mind and heart. It is a hard thing to go through your Stuff and get rid of things, pare down. I helped Nana do this with her household. It raised lots of stories, of course, and I was an interested listener. My cat, Blackie, listens patiently, but you’ll never get him to repeat the stories I have told him. I am taking a class at the community college this term: The Power of Your Journal. I thought I was taking it because I would be working with the elderly and their end of life issues, and it would be good for them. Ha! It has been good for me! I am handling these major changes in my life because I have a journal to be able to put down my thoughts and feelings, and to help me stay on track. I have recorded my goals, the objectives, why I want to do this makeover, and what I am looking forward to through it. I have also recorded some deep gratitude for help I have received. I am like Nana in this regard – always willing to serve and help others, but reluctant to ask for help from outside. Thank goodness when family does rally, and when friends graciously render needed service. I remember summers our family went from Florida to Washington, DC to help Nana & work on a bedroom, or the sleeping porch, or the garage, or the attic…. When you are behind the 8-ball and need help, you need help doing some things you cannot do for yourself. (‘Like our reliance upon the Savior.)

I love to sing. I had a solo in our college chorus programs this last week. Gospel songs are my favorite, and patriotic next; classical music and opera after that. I enjoy listening to our local NPR affiliate, Nana was a soprano, too, and she sang grand opera on the radio in the 1930’s. She was offered a 2nd principal part at the Met, but declined, and not too long after that made a personal commitment to just sing and perform sacred music. I feel like I am headed that way.
I love Nana, and I always will.

I was sharing some books with a friend yesterday and listened while she was looking them over. She said her own last name out loud - one of the contributing editors had the same last name. Whatever we are doing I think we naturally notice when we hear one of our family names. We also muse if we might be related. One of the taglines I have for my emails is the listing of the surnames in my pedigree - 31 of them - that on the level of my great-great-great-grandparents, minus one I don't know yet.

Ring Johnson Hibbard Jones Loomis Cousins Morton Wait Lewis Watkins Cushley Clark Wheeler Macatee Duncan Litzinger Ault Cross Ortman Baker Middleton Yarnell Blades Smith Schofield Wooley McVey Eubank Rohrer Ruble Ruse

I put those out there just in case someone notices one of their names and asks me about it. …Just in case! There’s always Serendipity :-)

Since taking this genealogy blogging challenge I have noticed how with most everything I do I can “work a genealogy angle” into it. I really do believe we all can feel a curiosity about our families, and that if that spark is kindled and encouraged it can be a blessing in anyone’s life. I help people learn to use computers, using family history and genealogy as the medium. Of course my ulterior motive is to enlist another researcher in the interest of genealogy – another point of light!

I Said A Prayer For You Today
by Frank J. Zamboni

I said a prayer for you today
And know God must have heard.
I felt the answer in my heart
Although He spoke no word!

I didn't ask for wealth or fame
(I knew you wouldn't mind).
I asked him to send treasures
Of a far more lasting kind!

I asked that He be near you
At the start of each new day;
To grant you health and blessings
And friends to share your way!

I asked for happiness for you
In all things great and small.
But it was for His loving care
I prayed the most of all!


At 11:24 AM, Blogger Andrea Parker said...

That is moving to think of them praying for every one of the descendants. I love the idea.

At 10:00 PM, Blogger damarisfish said...

Andrea, thank you. I don't count on folks reading my blog.
Here is that poem:

I Said A Prayer For You Today
I said a prayer for your today and know God must have heard-
I felt the answer in my heart, although he spoke no word,
I didn't ask for wealth or fame. I knew you wouldn't mind,
I asked him to send treasures, of a far more lasting kind.
I asked that he'd be near you at the start of each new day.
To grant you health and blessings and friends to share your way.
I asked for happiness for you in all things great and small,
But it was for his loving care I prayed for most of all.

On a print by Danny Hahlbohm
Available through


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