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Thursday, July 6, 2017

The River Of Life

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The last two generations that experienced the 
full set of the Harvey Traditions and was taught 
by the last Matriarch of the Harvey's, Desi Harvey. 

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Linda, Leona, Desi

Why is family tradition important?

It provides a source of identity. It is where you are from, your culture, your reasoning of who you and why. It's your source of your attitudes toward yourself and others.
It's your story ...

Sadly Sara, our family traditions have taken flight and insanity has set in. It’s a perfect example of when “Opinion rules, chaos follows”.

When just a few individuals inside a family becomes the only "priority", then the destruction of what is best for everyone begins. Let them go. Rise above their pettiness and their low expectations of you because you are much better than that. All of you are.

To All of my nieces, nephews and to my granddaughters - life is so much better outside the box. There is a world without the chaos that we have created for you. A place where peace reigns without the clutter, where the loud pounding noise of opinions disappear and fade off into the distance.

Walk away and leave the madness behind.

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Get back to the family traditions of old, where your destiny is not dictated to you and where what is best for all is the only rule that stands. Visit one another, pull together and let your children play among you. Love one another.

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Where the laughter in life flows is where the love flows.
It’s the River of Life.

Micky Gramlin

Friday, March 31, 2017

Modern Hybrids or heirloom?

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I am in no way an authority on gardening or planting, but my Mother has put out a garden every year for as long as I can remember. But this year, due to a scheduled open heart surgery in the next few days there will be no garden this year. I was telling her that I wanted to plant some tomatoes at least.

She explained to me that there are two types of main seeds to choose from as you buy for your garden. Modern Hybrids or Heirloom. The hybrids are like what you get at the grocery store, whereas the heirloom vegetables are the old-time variety. They are open-pollinated, which means you can save your own seed to replant from year to year and hand down the seeds through multiple generations of families. I found that interesting so I decided to do a little research on it.

Exceptional taste is the No. 1 reason why people choose heirloom seeds
I found that with hybrids, taste and nutrition have been sacrificed. Research has shown, hybrid vegetables and grains are substantially less nutritious. With commercial growers,


More Information

Difference Between Hybrid and Heirloom Vegetables - The Spruce

Master Gardener: FAQs about GMOs, hybrids and heirlooms

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Thursday, March 9, 2017

"Sway With Me"

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I am having a hard time concentrating on my work at hand today. I know
that it is only March 5th, but those summertime breezes are steadily
beckoning to me. The memories from summers past begin to taunt me
each time I turn back to work.

Trying hard to concentrate on the task at hand, I sense that I will not win ...“I can hear the sounds of violins long before it begins”. I find myself on the water and watch the seagulls take flight. Slowly, I begin to drift towards the song, “Like a lazy ocean hugs the shore”.

“When marimba rhythms start to play
Dance with me, make me sway
Like a lazy ocean hugs the shore
Hold me close, sway me more”

For just a moment, I stop on the water's edge to feel the tide settle in and a breeze roll across my face. The sun has begun its slow descent into the next starry night. The evening temp hovering near perfect. The song continues to play …

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Give Me Liberty or Give Me The Month Of March!

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Who needs it?
New Year’s Resolutions?
Ah, let them all melt with the snow.
Even a better idea?
Build a snowman and plop those
right on the snowman as the buttons that all
snowmen seem to have.

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What about those buttons anyway?
Surely, there are stats somewhere
that can give us the necessary information
to help us determine
how many buttons
a real serious snowman should have.
Don’t you think?
But since I am at 144 words already,
maybe another time for those stats.
We can move on to the real story here.

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How long has it been since you have put your kite into the air?
Don’t rush.
Take some time with your answer.
It is of major importance here!
Because it can only happen one month out of the year!
Yes … sure it takes some work to catch the wind just right. If you are anything like me, then you may have to run the length ...

"I am the voice, I will remain"

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Reading IBO Associate, Bev Austin’s Press Release, “Music Threatened Her Life”, inspired me to write my story. It’s not as dramatic, but the fact that I love music and without modern technology, I would not be able to listen to music.

The story took me back to a time in my life where I had inner struggles of accepting my loss and the changes in my life because of it.

Not only do I enjoy listening to music, although not a professional, I also play the rhythm guitar, bass guitar, percussions and the harmonica. I have never had a music lesson in my life nor can I read music. Everything I play is by ear or sometimes by watching. At the time of my loss I was a member of a weekend band.

During my twenties, I started to occasionally experience what I thought was something like swimmers ear but without the swimming. Usually in one ear, it would be like I was in a vacuum and all sound was way off in the distance. Eventually it would go away and I would forget about it.

In my thirties, it started happening more than occasionally and both ears were experiencing the problem. In my forties it had progressed to most of the time. Then one day on the job ...

Successful Front Porch Campaigns

James Garfield’s stay-at-home strategy kept him at Lawnfield throughout the campaign.
Source History Net

Most of us are familiar with the use of trains and the whistle stops of former presidential campaigns that occurred in the 1800’s,  But the same era was also the heyday of Front Porch campaigns that led to three successful presidential campaigns, James Garfield in 1880, Benjamin Harrison in 1888 and William McKinley in 1896.  

In June of 2008, U.S. Senator, Jeff Sessions, used the Front Porch campaign strategy in his bid for re-election in the Alabama’s Republican Party and received 92 percent of the vote.
In the summer of 1880, the Republican Party was facing a tightly contested presidential election. With the embarrassment of Grant’s tenure as president and the current state of the bad economy associated with Hayes, James Garfield would need to present himself to the people as a different politician to win the Oval Office.

Declaring a new political approach, the Republican Party decided to use ...


For More Information

James A Garfield


Benjamin Harrison


William McKinley


First Lady Lesson Plan: The Front Porch Campaign

As The Storm Clouds Gather: A Personal Story Part 8 The Final Entry

Rockfield, Indiana
Carroll County
May 16,1968

The Final Entry

“The noise got louder and was drowning out what the man was yelling at us.  I thought I heard him say not to cross the street. “Mom he is telling us not to cross the street!” Yes, that is what he is saying, but why? The answer came.”  

“A wall of water about 5 feet in height rolled down the street in front of us. It was a flash flood.  Totally disgusted, I slammed my fist into my other hand.”

I don’t know what the others were feeling. As I stood watching the madness of what was occurring unfold before us, I thought to myself, “I cannot go on.”  The lantern of what appeared to be our only safe haven was swaying just on the other side and now impossible to reach.

There was no other place to go.  We were out in the open and it was still so dark you could barely see if anyone was standing beside you. The whole town seemed to have disappeared. It was almost as if we were in a fog that had turned black.

We were wet, exhausted and on the verge of shock. And then I thought about what might happen to us if Mom went into shock. No, I decided I did not want to think about that. I knew the storm clouds were gathering again and we had to do something
I looked at the water and realized that if we had been any closer we would have been carried away or if we had made it across we would have been as well. The one blessing of the night I realized is that we were standing on higher ground and when a flash of lightning occurred, it looked like a small lake between us and the swaying lantern.

Mom quietly said, “We have to cross” No one said a word.  She knew our silence meant she was facing an argument ahead. None of us could swim ...

As The Storm Clouds Gather: A Personal Story Part 7

Rockfield, Indiana
Carroll County
May 16,1968

"I had heard Tina land on her feet as she jumped from the top bunk. I listened to her running footsteps as her shadow entered the hall and just as she made the turn she was suddenly gone. I did not want to tell my Mother but the storm was coming again and now we all had to find that house. I was afraid we were going to run out of time!"

"I walked up to my Mother and quietly said, “Mom”. I don’t think she heard me. “Mom” She stopped and looked at me. They all stopped to look at me. I hesitated. “Mom” I said again. I did not know how to begin. I was just getting ready to say it, and then bless her heart, “Here I am Mommy!” I heard Tina say."

It was one of the most wonderful moments of my life when Tina reappeared. The fact that we were all standing there together again, even in the midst of the chaos and destruction was, I felt one of the most monumental blessings that we would ever realize. But there was no time to be happy about the miracle of our reunion.

Mother Nature was not done. There was another round of storms marching towards us and the darkness was worse than a wet sheet clinging to us. We could barely see one another unless lightning streaked across the clouds and it seemed so close at times that I was afraid that a lightning bolt was going to be our real killer.

We all stood there waiting for some kind of answer as to what we should do. To me it looked like the whole town was gone. At 28, my Mother, I was sure she ...

Thursday, January 26, 2017

As The Storm Clouds Gather: A Personal Story Part 6

Rockfield, Indiana
Carroll County
May 16,1968

“I was not ready to accept my death and stubbornly decided I was getting out alive. I wanted my Mother was all I could think about. It was at that very moment that I shut my eyes and mentally went down to my knees in prayer.”

My descent down the side of the house was slow until my feet softly touched the ground. I felt hypnotized by the bright light and began my walk towards it. Then I felt my self-outside of me, and for just a few moments I watched as I was walking towards the light. 

The part of me that was standing outside of me was on the very edge of the bright light. I could sense the storms fury.  I realized I had a choice … I chose the light

… All of my remaining fears left me. My doubts were gone.
I was going to survive.

With my bare feet ...

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

As The Storm Clouds Gather: A Personal Story Part 5

What happens next is going to be the hardest part to write about. To survive everything that happened on the first hit only to be ripped out from my Mother’s grasp and once again be carried off was unbelievable to me. What could I do to stop the madness of it? How could I save myself? No one could even find me to try to save me. My thoughts turned to God.

My Mother was the only witness to see the monster come back and take me again. I have never talked about what happened and how I managed to survive the experience to her or to anyone else. I have always just skipped over that part of the story. Even my mother will tell you that the tornado carried me off again and then will skip that part and smoothly continue on.

I decided not to talk about it because I thought and still do that most people would not believe me. No one seemed to or seems to believe in miracles anymore. In 1968 the world was changing with the hippie movement on one side talking about peace and love. While on the other side was the Vietnam War with the protesters and the rioters tearing up the streets. Who wanted to hear a 12 year old's version of a miracle with the world in constant upheaval?

But thinking about and writing about the storm over the past few days and trying to decide whether to include or skip over this part again, I realized that it just wasn’t me that had not been telling the full story. But that all of us had a part of the terrifying experience that we never talked about.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

As The Storm Clouds Gather: A Personal Story Part 4

Something told me to run and to run like hell. I darted into the direction I thought would be away from it … but it was too late. I was immediately lifted just off the ground and was running in midair and then I started to spin. Someone grabbed hold of my left leg and pulled me back down to the ground. It was my Mother!

But I made the mistake of immediately standing up again. This time there was no hesitation on the storms insistence on taking me.  It had me again and it was not going to let me go. I heard my Mother cry out in anguish as she once more tried to reach out and save what may have been the only child left out of the five she had carried ...

As The Storm Clouds Gather: A Personal Story Part 3

The moment of impending death to my 12 year old mind was more than I could take.  My whole body began to shake as I sat waiting for it. I had pleaded with God all that day for everything to get back to normal  and when I went to bed that night with a horrible stomach ache, I reminded him of my prayer. But waking up now it was obvious he had ignored my plea.

That morning I knew the day wasn’t going to be right. When I stepped outside to walk to the bus stop I noticed that the sun was way too bright.  “Damn it”, I had said to myself.  I was done with everything being all shiny and new. Nothing had been the same since we had moved into our new mobile home. It was like we just didn’t fit. There just wasn’t anything real about it. Now here I am sitting in bed waiting to die? I don’t even get the chance to fight? My mind then began to cry out, “Tina? Tina? Where are you?”

The mobile home began to rock. Out of time I thought ...