|My antique file cabinet.|
Hope the IRS doesn't audit me!
Saturday, April 14, 2018
Sunday, April 8, 2018
Saturday, March 31, 2018
|Contstruction of home models. The A&P supermarket|
can be seen across the street.
(Source of picture unknown)
|The three home models. The sign for Gristede's grocery store|
can be seen to the left. Later, that became Pegnataro's Supermarket.
(Source of picture unknown)
|Description of the ranch model.|
Source: Hamden Chronicle, Special Supplement, March 12, 1959, p.4
|Dad really did a beautiful job with this. All the other homes|
on our side of street left their steep backyard hills intact.
You can see Dad's window work in this photo.
|Digging the "brook!"|
This lower level is now owned by the State of Connecticut.
The State purchased the lowest level of everyone's home on our side of the street in an
effort to combat frequent flooding caused by the brook. (Not my father's fault!)
|Grilling in the carport - circa 1968 or 1969?|
Watching from the steps is my mom. Manning the grill is my stepdad, Al Falcone.
The "little chef" in front of the station wagon in my brother Dean.
On December 2, 2011, after refusing several times, our youngest daughter, Meghan finally agreed to go on a date with Andrew Jefts, a guy she met while attending school in New Hampshire. Why do I remember the date? Because the phone conversation occured while Meghan and I were on a train. We were returning from a trip into New York City where we met older daughter, Caitlin to pick out her wedding dress. When we arrived back in New Haven, we found my mother had just passed away. I like to think Mom had something to do with Meghan finally accepting that date.
|Before - May 2012|
|After - June 2013|
Saturday, March 24, 2018
|Julie Chen with |
Meg and my mom
|This is the only picture we got -|
upstairs after fire
|You can enlarge this article to read to story of how we were|
saved by Meghan's hamster, Snowball.
We got a call from a guy who offered to take professional portraits of Meg and her older sister, Caitlin. He would take pictures of them using the burned second floor as background, he said. The portraits would be free, he said. Beautiful, dramatic 8x10 pictures, he said. A week later or so, we saw the result of his work. On page 14 of the National Enquirer. We never got any portraits, but the frequency of phone calls for Meghan increased dramatically after that.
they had to transport us to New York in a limo. Not so shy anymore! We also recreated the fateful night of June 30, 1997, for an episode of Melissa Etheridge’s show, Beyond Chance (Click on that link to see the clip!). We spent an entire day filming what would become a 10-minute segment on the Animal Planet show, Wild Rescues.
|Here's where the fire started - the BX cable shorted -|
Just inches from where Meghan was sleeping!
You are probably thinking, this really doesn’t sound like a story about misfortune. It probably isn’t. Yes, we lost the entire top floor of our home. We couldn’t live there for months until the damage was repaired. It was very scary. The fish died. Meghan’s Beanie Baby collection was severely diminished. The first couple weeks after the fire were very stressful. Luckily, my sister Kathy and her husband owned a cottage in Milford where we could stay while our home was being rebuilt. We enjoyed the summer there. The dog - not so much! He was attacked by the fleas residing in the cottage and had his ear bitten by a stray dog on the beach!
|Caitlin looks through the kitchen ceiling|
to the floor above.
|Dormer in progress|
But from misfortune can come a gift. We learned how supportive our neighbors were. We were all alive and well. The cat, dog, and the hamster all survived, We got new beds, new clothes, and new toys. We were able to remodel our dining room, expand our upstairs and install a hard-wired smoke alarm system, none of which we could have afforded otherwise.Meghan came into her own. And we all got a family story that will live on forever!
Thursday, March 15, 2018
Before you decide to read on, I must warn you - I am old. Therefore my story is quite lengthy (almost 7 typewritten pages.) If you're not keen to learn all the intricacies of my life, just stop reading now. It's okay - I get it. I'm really not that interesting. But it's important to have the story written.
Tuesday, March 13, 2018
In honor of Women’s History Month, the prompt for this week’s 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks is “Strong Women.” Keeping with my plan to write about my generation this year, I am celebrating ALL the strong women in my family! In order to respect people’s privacy, I will use only first names. I could write volumes about each of these wonderful women, but in order to keep this post at a reasonable length, I will be letting each know what I appreciate about them. (Probably something we should do on a regular basis, but I’m happy to have this opportunity now!)
|Me and three of my sisters-in-law at Cait's wedding in 2012.|
That's Peggy on the far right.
|The wedding I missed. That's Wendy, second from left, next to Scott. His brother, John is the man standing on the far right.|
Kathy is actually my ex-sister-in-law. We call her Kathy F. to differentiate her from my sister Kathy. Here’s the thing about our family – it’s kind of like being in the Mafia – you’re in for life. Once you’re in, there’s no getting out! Kathy has been dealt a few tough cards throughout her life. In spite of that, she raised (actually is still raising) three fabulous kids while working two jobs and earning her massage therapist certificate. She always remembers family birthdays which is something I struggle with.
|I just love this photo. It's all eight of the children of my mom and my stepdad.|
|Samuel Family photo taken in 2007 on my father's 75th birthday. The only one missing is Jeanne.|
So sad how many of these people are no longer with us.
Sunday, March 4, 2018
Got up this morning to a beautiful sunrise. I wanted to get an early start so we would be sure to have a good seat at this morning's keynote address. Most people probably want to hear Henry Louis Gates, of the PBS TV show certain to get Finding Your Roots. I'm interested in his talk, but I really want to hear Natalia LaFourcade.
When Scott and I were in Mexico over Christmas break, we stayed at the El Ganzo Hotel. This hotel has a recording studio where artists from all over the world come to record their music. Many of the sessions are recorded and shown every night in on the TV in your room. There were several artists that we really liked, but I was particularly struck by Natalia LaFourcade's song "Eclipse." I even wrote the name down so I wouldn't forget it. I had no idea she was going to be a speaker at RootsTech until a couple months after that! I considered that a sign that I was meant to go to the conference!!
The emcee of the morning was Jason Hewlett. He did a pretty good job getting thousands of sleepy genealogists up and moving at 8:30 in the morning after our heads have been crammed full of information. He shared with us his special gift - some weird muscle thing he can do with his face - and told us we all should be happy (in comparison) with the gifts that we have been given.
Natalia has a busy couple days - after giving today's keynote, she is heading to the Oscars as her song "Remember Me" (from the animated movie Coco) is nominated for the Best Original Song. This morning was the first time she ever performed it live!
Henry Louis Gates was, as always, informative. He has a new web series called Finding Your Roots: The Seedlings. Kids attend a camp where they actually use science and genealogy to learn about their family history. It sounds pretty cool.
Then it was off to my first presentation: Fun With Photos- The Sheboygan Dead Horse Picture. The presenter was Colleen Fitzpatrick, a forensic genealogist. Colleen shared the story of how she and her team used various techniques to pinpoint the date and time this picture was taken. You can find more about this on her blog Indentifinders International.
UPDATE: 4:08 pm Chicago time. Yup. Missed our flight. By five minutes. Not sure why Southwest wouldn't hold it as they did for another flight. Oh well. We will be leaving here at 9:55. Thank goodness for Scott - he's picking us up at Brady at 12:50 in the morning. Oh the joys of travel!!!