~ The pieces are all sewn together, stitched with love.........and a quilt tells a story and the story is our past ~
The Arrowood family immigrated from England to Maryland in the 1700's. They went south, eventually settling in the mountains of North Carolina. Later , some went further south, into the Piedmont of North Carolina, in search of work and a better way of life.
I am in search of my family.
I search for those that came before me, and lived their lives as best they could. I am in search of their stories, how they lived, and how they loved.
I shared this love of seeking the past with my Dad, sharing each new finding with him, the thrill in his heart intermingling with mine. I continue this search in his honor, and hope to know these people of ours when I join up with them all in heaven.
~ Steve Lewis Arrowood 1932-2008 ~
Come with me, back to a simpler time and place. A place far removed from the hectic pace of today. To a time when life was hard, but the rewards were great. When your quality of life was determined by your own sweat, your own toil, and your own ingenuity.
Would you like a glass of sweet tea? Let's sit out on the porch where we will catch the sweetly scented breeze of summertime. Maybe Grandma will fry up some of her wonderful chicken... Time slows here.
"We shape our lives not by what we carry with us, but what we leave behind."
~You live as long as you are remembered.~
"Our most treasured family heirlooms are our sweet family memories. " Author: Unknown
"But those who came before us will teach you. They will teach you from the wisdom of former generations."
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
Waiting at the Gate
Also known as simply, "Bud".
Those two old army buddies, kept in touch, all these years. They were really good friends. Bud was a sweet, gentle, soft-spoken sort of man. He was short in stature, almost tiny. I think that they picked on him mercilessly, while he was in the Army and Dad saw that, and made friends with him, quick. Dad had a way about him, of migrating to the aid of someone like that. Always looking out for the underdog. They had all sorts of stories about one another during those Army Days...stunts they pulled and funnies that happened. Shenanigans.
I know each of them surely found an endless supply of conversation between themselves. It just flowed, punctuated with occasional chuckles and laughter. Bud and his wife, Zella, would come to visit us, just about yearly through the years. Dad and Bud would sit at the table and talk low, smiling and nodding, a lot. A kid just notices these things. (Dad has a best friend, too).
They would come to see us, always with wonderful gifts in hand, for all of us kids. One such gift stands out in my mind...I still have it. A wonderful transistor radio shaped like a ladybug. The wings open as you twist the volume up. A wonderful thing for a little gal.
Bud's family was originally from Alabama and the family still owned the old farm down there. Dad said that Bud always talked of retiring to that farm and that is just what he did. They lived in Berwyn , Illinois for most of their married lives. They raised their son there. But the call of "home" and the farm, beckoned. They left the suburb of Chicago, and the bustling city life, for a more leisurely paced one. They built a beautiful home atop a small mountain on the land and slowed down a bit.
Dad told me about leaving Bud, that last time, when they went to Alabama to see them. He said that Bud stood by the fence, at the gate, as they drove away. Bud had diabetes and had several bad episodes while they were there. Dad said that the wind blew Bud's hair all over and he looked so pitiful..standing there with tears streaming down his face as he watched Dad and Mom drive away. Dad thought as he watched him, 'this is probably the last time I will see my buddy'..
Dad told me that, while tears streamed down his own face, after they got back home.
That kind of friendship is evolved from having kindred spirits, it just doesn't come along every day.
Something to be cherished.
I imagine there was a wonderful reunion up in heaven this week. My Dad must have clapped his hands together, just a way he had, and exclaimed loudly, "Hi Ya, Pal"!
I am sure there are some funny 'shenanigans' going on up there, right now.
My cousin told me today that she "just bets Steve was the one standing by the gate this time, waiting".
At Heaven's Gate.
I'll just bet she is right about that.
A.C. "Bud" HARDMAN, 78, of Oneonta, died Jan. 9, 2010, at St. Vincent's East. The Alabama native served in the U.S. Army and had been a foreman for Milwaukee Railroad. He was the son of the late Ras and Ida Keeves Hardman.
Surviving are wife Zella Stoffregen Hardman, son James Cornelius, and brother Melvin Hardman, all of Oneonta.
A memorial service will be held later by the family, according to information from Lemley Chapel.