Wednesday, March 1, 2023

Editor's Corner

By Mary E. Adair

March 2023

"It was one of those March days
when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold:
when it is summer in the light,
and winter in the shade."

– Charles Dickens

March has numerous dates that are personally either celebratory or tearful reminders, a similar up vs down score of instances much in accord with our opening quote. One steeps oneself in hot teas, cocoas, coffees, or other beverages while huddling in a warm afghan in the attempt to achieve the cosiness one craves, but stay alert! One moment March offers hugs and tenderly sweet reminisences, the next instant the pesky wind or damaging dust storm blows all the patio furniture and delicate flower urns across the yard.

Remaining as calm and trusting as possible that calamities can be quickly resolved, even when the absence of an efficient well-versed in all the rescue skills, dashing, dare one say, hero, apparently took a wrong turn. Perhaps lured by daffodils or Bluebonnets on his way, or has confused himself onto the absolutely never-to-help-here pathway. Therefore one must distract oneself and literature is an excellent solution, and voila! here we are just delighted to show you the treasures in this March, so be it, issue.

Danielle Cote Serar's "A Mother's Lessons" brings a part of her life to us, sharing both sad memories and precious new occasions with her youngsters. In her column "On Trek," Judith Kroll speaks about "Time."

"Introspective" by Thomas O'Neill, whisks you into his tale of "The Sage of Millville." Mattie Lennon's "Irish Eyes" suggests "Recommended Reading and Listening for Saint Patrick's Day," following through with intriguing suggestions.

In "Woo Woo," Pauline Evanosky enthusiastically gives tips about successful manifestation. Marilyn Carnell discusses living in Minnesota in her column "Sifoddling Along," and how it is grdually winning her over.

Roderich Cohenour's column is hosting an "Encore: Cookin' With Leo" featuring Helmer's recipe for making Irish Whiskey at home just in time for celebrating Saint Patrick's Day. You can count on a dose of his famous humor and tall tales as well Melinda Cohenour is "hosting" a severe inflamation, not Covid she assures, but she is weak from the effects and still concerned for Rod's health. She did some articles for our eZine before becoming a columnist and is including one of those in her "Armchair Genealogy" column to facilitate those who need to access previous information from her various areas of research. Click her byline and the vault shall open.

We are pleased to have the noted author John McGraft share one of his lyric poems "Two Bridgets." Check his bio and here is a link to a column where Mattie Lennon has more info on McGraft's literary career: After Closing and other works by McGraft

Marilyn Carnell's poem is a "Tribute to My Uncle Abe," and the poem "Willingly Granted" is by yours truly. Bud Lemire presents his three poems: "Shedding My Body," "Living in A Covid World," and "Don't Talk Back To Me."

"Cedar Waxwings" and "Sometimes The Moon" both by John I. Blair lend a more lighthearted aspect. "Raindrops and Rivers" is one of Carrie E. Joslin's charming compositions, so visual, you feel you are part of the action. Walt Perryman's three are "Do You Worry," "Horses and Life," and "Fireball."

Walt Perryman is also the author of the continuing tale that reveals the compositions titled "Honey Dog Tales." The March issue wraps up the series with Chapter Seven. 

The artcle "Noralee's Story" by yours truly is a remembrance of my sister born 19 months after me, making her the second of four girls, no brothers for us. She was a person who won friends easily and was not one to put on airs. She could put you in your place as she was a Sagitarian with bluntness a trait. She pointed out what one wished not to face, then advised how to make it more plausible. She is missed. 

We continue to thank our co-founder and webmaster, Mike Craner, whose knowlege and expertise keeps Pencil Stubs Online actually online. He does it well as we are now in our 26th year. Happy Saint Patrick's Day, Susie and Mike!

Look for us in April 2023.

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Armchair Genealogy


By Melinda Cohenour

This is an Encore presentation of an article published here shortly before Melinda Cohenour began doing her column "Armchair Genealogy" for this eZine. She is involved in medical tests currently but plans to resume her column in the near future.

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Genealogy Unravelled

      For those of you who may have explored one or two of my prior articles concerning various lines in my family tree, you may be familiar with the fact that my interest in genealogy arose as a result of my Grandmother Carrie Bullard Joslin’s lifelong enthusiasm for “meeting our ancestors.” Grandmother Joslin was wont to recite family lineages and groups often, enhancing the recitation by one or two colorful stories relating to a family member. For a young girl, the lists of innumerable names became confusing as I made my first attempts at figuring out Who, exactly, was Who? How did those names fit into my life? As my childish inquiries were made, Grandmother Joslin would say, “Well, Melindy Ellen. You see, you come from a long line of folks with lots of names, like Bullard and Joslin, Davenport and Young, Hopper and Godwin. Then, to make things interesting, we must not forget the Russells and the Gambles, the Buzzards and the Brownings – Oh! And we must NOT forget the Moucks and the Muskrats!” So many times I heard those family names recited that – to this day – the names stick in my head.

      Now, my father’s mom also knew her family lore. She was just not so involved in naming the names, making the lists, visiting the cemeteries, and penning the pals. Her tidbits of family lines came more often as an outburst or a caution: “Do not forget, you descend from Baron von Hempleman of Germany! Young ladies of that line do not…(wear holes in their new dress, sully their fine white lace on their new apron, wear their Church gloves outside to ride the “horse” in Grandpa’s old salt cedar where his last jockey’s saddle hung).” Or, “That Carrie! She thinks she’s such a much! Prancin’ that bustle in the ole James movie! Why, I was COUSINS to the boys!” (It should be known that Grandmother Joslin was an extra in the Jesse James movie filmed in their hometown of Pineville, Missouri, and did indeed toss her bustle with the best of the ladies!)

      Those two lines alone sent me on decades-long searches to investigate and prove the alleged relationships, especially the Baron von Hempleman line. For Grandmother pronounced the surname as she had heard it pronounced, undoubtedly by her father Lew Wallace Alexander, and it bore little resemblance to the proper spelling given herein. It sounded more like Hoppelman or Hauptman or something similar but research into those names came to dead ends. It was not until I found a cache of records kept by Grandmother that included some birth, death and marriage certificates that I began to branch out and research the line of her father. As I searched further and further back beyond even the Revolutionary War, I came upon the Baron von Hempleman name finally along with a romantic story that one day I will attempt to relate here. For George and Adam Hempleman, brothers of the Baron, sailed to America before the Revolutionary War, along with Marguerite Duffy. Marguerite was a commoner and Baron von Hempleman apparently was indisposed to permit his son, George, to wed her. Thus, the brothers gave up their titles and lands and came as indentured servants to America. The three were separated upon arrival as each traveled to their place of service. The brothers would both fight for America’s Independence and not see one another again until late in life.

      The Jesse James movie line from Grandmother Nora Alexander Carroll King gave me fits. Then, one late night of research in Phoenix bore fruit. I had located records documenting my great-grandmother Flutie Creek’s father and mother. Absolom Creek wed Martha Ann Wade in Liberty, Clay County, Missouri. As I did further searches for Absolom I came upon the name of his father, Jacob Haudenscheldt Creek, who had wed Virginia Lee Younger. As I sleepily continued my research, all of a sudden my tired brain began to fire off little peals of hints: Liberty…Clay County…Younger…what does that mean? Oh, my! Could it be? The Youngers of Clay County infamy? Well, yes it could be and was. Turns out my father’s side of the family had some fascinating tales to tell as well.

      More recently, the Moucks and the Muskrats of Grandma Joslin’s litany came to mind. My wonderful uncle Dr. Edgar H. Burks, Jr. is a spry, alert, humorous, 94-year-old who has led an exciting life. He and my aunt, Linnie Jane Joslin Burks were missionaries to Nigeria, Africa, for many years before retiring to Springfield, Missouri. A few years ago, Aunt Linnie Jane went to her Heavenly rewards. At her funeral were many family members and friends, including the Moucks and the Muskrats. Uncle Edgar’s mother was Mary Louisa Mouck and her younger sister, Elva May Mouck wed Jacob “Jake” Claude Muskrat of the Cherokee tribe. The Mouck sisters were raised in the Indian Territory before it was admitted to the Union as the State of Oklahoma on November 16, 1907.

      This year I finally decided to see exactly how the Muskrat Cherokees fit into our tree. In the course of documenting their family history, I found one extremely wonderful Cherokee woman, Ruth Margaret Muskrat Bronson. Her life’s story is one worthy of an entire column devoted to her achievements, alone. Additionally, I found some of those coincidental occurrences that make genealogical research so intriguing. The threads of those stories weave a fine tale that stretches from the wilds of old Virginia in the early 1700s to the fight for Independence in the State of Texas, from the shores of the Tennessee rivers to the land of the Red Man, Oklahoma. That will be a fine fabric to present in a later column, as well.

      One discovers as the trek into the past proceeds, the paths of our ancestors are diverse and filled with exciting adventures, mundane records of everyday events, and some rare finds which are increasingly within reach as the Internet spurs a greater library of original documents available to the inquisitive genealogist. In the months to come, I hope to prepare columns featuring some of these colorful, romantic, infamous or courageous ancestors. Those whose stories warrant further exploration and may bring a smile to the face of the reader.

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Woo Woo


By Pauline Evanosky

Money, Money, Money

Here is something I might not have talked about much. It is a technique you can use to acquire material things. You think, “I want a pair of shoes.” This is not an ordinary pair of shoes that you can get pretty much anywhere. No, these are special shoes. Let’s say, just for argument’s sake, that these shoes cost $500. You have never purchased a pair of shoes that cost that much. Your entire clothes budget for a year doesn’t even reach $500. Why I ask you, are you set on buying a $500 pair of shoes?

It doesn’t matter what I think, and it doesn’t matter why you want such an expensive pair of shoes. What I think just does not matter here. It matters what you think. You want them. Get them. You say you don’t have $500 lying around for a pair of shoes?

Okay, then you will save for them. Like everybody else does who wants a $500 pair of shoes. Except there is a trick here that you might not have tried before.

There is something called the Laws of Manifestation. I haven’t delved all that much into this lately, being as how I pretty much have everything I need. But there was a time when I coveted high-priced things. Actually, now that I think about it, I could do with a new $1,700 four-harness weaving loom. I think that would be nice to have. I could do with a cleaning lady coming to my house every couple of weeks. Right now? I can’t afford that. Now that I think about it, I’d like a podcast and video setup for my home study. So, I suppose I could concentrate on those things and then get back to you in six months to see how I’ve done.

What you want to do is operate from a place of abundance and not scarcity. We get hit every day with advertising that plucks away at our sense of neediness and scarcity. What? You aren’t wearing the latest whatever? For shame. You need to buy this jumpsuit or whatever it is to be as good-looking, as healthy or as successful as the model is. Advertising can sometimes feel insidious. Why not turn it to your own advantage?

Here’s what you do. You picture, in your mind’s eye, you wearing these shoes. You picture yourself walking into a museum wearing them. You picture yourself at some fancy restaurant wearing them. You feel elegant wearing these shoes. Your feet feel like you are walking on a cloud these shoes are so comfortable. There is a reason why many car commercials do not have people sitting in the driver’s seat. It’s so you can imagine yourself sitting behind the wheel of that particular model of car.

You print out a picture of these shoes and put it where you will be seeing it often during the course of the day. You put a picture in your office cubicle. You put one of the pictures beside your bed and look at it every night before you go to sleep and every morning when you wake up. What you are doing is raising your vibrations in regard to this very expensive pair of shoes. You are also doing what advertisements do. You are exposing yourself to multiple instances during the course of each day where you have this pair of shoes in your awareness.

What starts next is you might start seeing people wearing these shoes. Folks on the sidewalk or in the grocery stores. You see these shoes on the feet of movie stars and famous singers. The same thing happens when you buy a new car. Suddenly you start seeing everybody and their uncle driving the same make and model, even the same color of car as the one you just bought. You are really tuned into this new car you bought. You start seeing it everywhere.

With the shoes that you want, you even go to the store and try on a pair. You walk around the shoe store wearing this pair of shoes you would give your eyeteeth to own. You know what it feels like to wear these shoes. Take them for a test drive around the shoe store.

Then, you relax. You let go of all this wanting and desiring. You just relax about it and let it all go.

You’ve put your cosmic order in. Now, let the magic begin.

What will happen next is that you will become aware of opportunities everywhere that will support your desire to own a pair of these fabulous shoes. The first thing that occurs to you is that you need to start building up a fund to buy these shoes. How? Out of every paycheck, you set aside $10 in an envelope. Record the date and the amount of money you put into the envelope. Keep a running total on the envelope.

The next time you get paid, put another $10 in the envelope. Do this for a couple of months. Do you miss that $10 every paycheck? Nope. So, start putting $15 into the envelope. Do this every time you get paid. Don’t forget. Do this $15 contribution to the shoe fund for another couple of months. By now, you’ve got $100 in that envelope. You are not missing the money, and you are saving up for the shoes you want. No money comes out of the envelope. It only goes in.

One of the things we did at one of my husband’s jobs, where he had direct deposit, was to split the paycheck up. We funneled part into a savings account, and the rest went into our household checking account. Over the years, we found that nest egg in the savings account very helpful.

While saving up for your shoes, go back to the shoe store and try the shoes on again. Ask the folks in the store if they have any part-time work available. You can come in on the weekends and in the evenings. It’s not a permanent thing. You’re just going to get a side gig to earn money for your shoes. You think of them as yours now. Right? Who knows, you might even get a discount on purchases from the store.

It’s like magic. Within a couple more months, you’ve probably gotten enough money to pay for these shoes. Also, you are working like a fiend, but you’re also getting used to it. It’s not for the rest of your life. People can get accustomed to working long hours. I have. My husband has. I know you will too.

Who knows? You might like working in the shoe store and staying there long enough to start getting promoted. Plus, you can accumulate a remarkable collection of shoes.

What if it isn’t shoes that you want?

I wanted a piano. I picked out the piano I wanted. It was a Roland electric piano. I didn’t know how to play the piano. I just wanted one. I read a book called, “Creating Money” by Sanaya Roman and Duane Packer. I told my husband I wanted to buy the book. He turned around and plucked it off the bookshelf behind us, and handed it to me. How fortuitous was that? He had purchased the book a few years back, started reading it, and then decided it was too Woo Woo for his tastes. There it sat until I was ready to read it.

So, I practiced the exercises. We did not have the $1,000 the piano cost at that time. I thought about this piano all the time. I wanted it. Six months later, my husband was driving through Oakland and saw a sales sign at the Sherman Clay piano store. He went in and purchased a used student’s piano for me.

This stuff works.

Interestingly, the folks who wrote, “Creating Money” also wrote the book I used when I learned to channel. It is called, “Opening to Channel”.

Abraham Hix is a spirit guide who talks about the laws of manifestation. His channel is Ester Hicks. She and her husband gave Abraham their last name as an inside joke. It would be like me calling my guide Seth Evanosky. If you look on the internet Ester and her husband Jerry published a boatload of books. There are tons of YouTube recordings out there. I have a couple of friends who adore Abraham and Ester. Jerry is no longer in the picture, as he passed a few years ago.

My experience with wanting things up until I read, “Creating Money” was with the wanting end of things. There was much-undirected frustration and a whole lot of angst involved that never went anywhere. I believe now I had toxic ideas about money itself. There was never a hint of happiness or peace and calm involved. It was like this never-ending tension that was both toxic and unnerving. So, the correct way to do this was to do the wanting part of it for a while and then let go. Letting go was the magic part of the equation.

This manifestation of material goods was something I learned about as I was first learning about the Woo Woo side of life. It might help to pay for that new car or vacation you’d like to take.

This experiment of manifesting might even convince you that you have easy access to your own Woo Woo side of life. Thanks for reading. Keep safe. Honor yourself and others.


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Encore: Cookin' With Leo


By Leocthasme

Making Good Irish Cream

Even if my Dear Sweet Italian Fairy Godmother taught me how to make all sort of things, whether alcoholic or not, she never knew anything about good Irish drinks or drinking, but then she ain’t Irish. Italians make good wine, but they don’t know doodly squat about good Irish drinkin’ stuff. My fore bearers from Paddy on knew very well how to make a batch of Irish Cream for their morning waker/upper. But then in those days they had to drink what they made on the spot because they had no such things like egg beaters or condensed milk so they had to drink what they made as soon as they made it. Not much refrigeration in those days so eggs and fresh cream would only last maybe a day or two in some cool cave. Paddy’s pal Hennessey knew all about corn and barley squeezin’ and when he and Paddy had their morning coffee it was easy to keep the snakes out of Ireland.

Now I know you can go out to the Liquor Store and buy some Bailey’s, but then as good as it is, it is just not got the kick as some good home brewed Irish Cream. So here is a great recipe to make some very good

Irish Cream

No substitutions here at all, except the choice of Whiskey you may want to use.

Here is what you need:

    6 oz ®Egg Beaters
    12 oz ®Rich’s Coffee Rich
    1 regular size can ®Eagle Brand Condensed Milk
    3 tablespoons ®Hershey’s Liquid Chocolate
    1½ cups Blended Whiskey, your choice, but at least over 80 proof, 86 proof is fine, but 90 proof you may like even better. The best I made was with ®Wild Turkey 101.

Here is how to mix it:

In a mixing bowl combine the egg beaters and the coffee rich, you can use a mixer but use slow speed. While combining these add the Eagle Brand milk slowly and mix well. Use some of the mixed liquid to clean out the condensed milk can. Add the chocolate and combine all the ingredients well. You can store this mix in the frig for several days, when you are ready to drink it add the blended whiskey and stir in gently and mix well. This will make one quart or better of Good Irish Cream.

An’ tha’ Top o’tha’ Marnin’ To Ya!

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Sifoddling Along


By Marilyn Carnell

Living in Minnesota

In a joking way, I say that I am serving my second sentence in Minnesota. To explain: I first moved to Minnesota in 1966 when my husband got a job with the U.S. Public Health Service and found that I had to make a number of adjustments in my life. First of all the social change is huge. Famed “Minnesota Nice” is more like the description of the Platte River by Pioneers -

“A mile wide and an inch deep.” A Minnesotan is very friendly on the surface, but there is another saying I have learned: He will tell you how to get anywhere but the way to his home.”

Other conundrums involved learning to cope with the long winters. It was a year of epic snowstorms. The University of Minnesota closed for the first time in its history due to weather.

We had few adequately warm clothes and were poor as church mice, so I learned to knit hats, scarves, mittens, and sweaters as soon as possible by reading directions in a magazine. I was in grad school studying for a Master’s in Public Health degree made possible by a scholarship. Classes were held on both sides of the Mississippi, meaning I had to walk across an open bridge with frigid winds blowing down the valley. The only thing that made it survivable was a ratty old fur coat that I inherited from my husband’s grandmother. It was ragged, but it was warm. I had no car, so I traveled by bus to and from campus with my three-year-old son, Ben. He attended a nursery school near the campus while I attended classes I would stuff him into a nearby phone booth to shelter him a bit while we waited for the bus to come.

For the next seven years, I worked at General Mills. The company recognized that employees sometimes needed help with transportation so they provided electric hookups at each parking space so we could plug in a device called a “head bolt heater”. I still have no idea what a “head bolt” is, I was only interested in knowing that my car would start in sub-zero weather. When I visited Missouri, people would ask me why I had a short electric cord hanging over my front bumper. One bitter cold day, my ears were frostbitten in the short time it took to walk to my car. I learned to not wear earrings on cold days.

After leaving General Mills, I worked at the University of Minnesota for another 4 years before returning to Pineville to go back to attend the University of Arkansas to earn a Ph.D. in Food Science. I found it much more difficult to drive in winter weather commuting to classes in Fayetteville than in Minneapolis because there was little equipment to handle snow or ice. The prevailing thought was “God put it there, God will take it away.” One memorable morning while driving on black ice, I slid into ditches three times when I stopped the car. Finally getting to the campus unscathed I parked, and the car was later hit by another driver in what I thought was a safe place.

I never planned to return to Minnesota, but fate had other ideas. In the spring of 2011, we lost our home to a flash flood on Big Sugar Creek. In the next few weeks, nearby Joplin was blown away by an F5 tornado and my husband nearly died from a gushing ulcer. While we were distracted by his illness, a second flood destroyed many of the items we had “rescued” and thought were safe. My son and daughter-in-law found a house for us to rent in Minnesota and it was the best option, so I began my second sentence in Minnesota and will remain here until the end of my days. This time I am better prepared for living in cold weather: Instead of a single garage at the end of a long driveway behind the house, there is an attached double garage and I have warm clothes. No shoveling huge piles of snow, there is a nice company that does it for me.

Here are a couple of photos of the big storm in February 2023: The street scene was taken at 1 a.m. I was amazed at how much light was reflected by the snow.

The view from my office was taken through a screen as I wasn’t about to let in the sub-zero weather.

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