When my youngest brother, Danny, was in school, he had to research our family names. When my grandfather discovered the meaning for the surname of Allen, he agreed with the description, for he maintained the Allen men were as strong as a rock and extremely handsome!
In order to hereunto, the Publisher will take what pains he can to obtain a Faithful Relation of all such things: and will particularly make himself beholden to such Persons in Boston whom he knows to have been for their own use the diligent Observers of such matters.Benjamin Harris
The people best fitted for this country are those who can work with their own hands.Pierre Boucher
In the fall of 1961, a smiling couple poses for a photo. The handsome man drapes his arm around his lovely bride while she holds their three-month-old daughter. In the background, the family ranch stretches across the mesa.
“I realized I had seen and lived it all—all the successive phases of the frontier, first the frontiersman, then the pioneer, then the farmers and the towns.”
–Laura Ingalls Wilder
Home for me has several implications. It is doused in memories of the people and places that offer sweet memories of the past, joy in the moment, and all the promises for the future. Life was not perfect, by any stretch of the imagination. It was sometimes uneasy, and painful and raw; still, love found its way into my life and tangled my heart with many that I hold so dear. Deep within, I know I have been blessed with the love and companionship of family and friends. I have cherished them all.
When I was a little girl, I lived in my mama’s hometown, Hotchkiss, Colorado. On my first birthday, I celebrated the day at my grandparent’s house, a small cabin situated on Roger’s Mesa. One of my gifts from my grandparents was a little piggy bank. It was a pig in a barrel. I still have that little bank, and it means the world to me. According to my mom, my grandparents fussed over this gift before they decided on this little guy. Sweet memories. Continue reading “The Piggy Bank”
Although it was early that summer morning, the rising temperatures suggested that the day would be another hot one on the dusty mesa. Across the meadow, sheep quietly grazed in the pasture. Lambs jumped and hopped and impishly butted each other; their playful cries broke the stillness of the morning. Since the cows had been milked, they contently grazed in the pasture with the sheep. The glow of the morning sun cast a soft light along the peak of Lamborn Mountain. The morning landscape created a serene view of the North Fork Valley. Continue reading “The Gift of the Magpie”
Sun swept beaches, glorious sunsets, fog horns sounding on cloudy mornings, and the calls of seagulls along the shores created the perfect hometown, and my childhood days passed on a perfect little island, nestled in the San Francisco Bay. Alameda had that hometown charm and the feel of a small town although Oakland and San Francisco were just miles away.
Although Alameda began as a peninsula, the powers that be decided they needed a canal to help expand the growing shipping industry. Work on this channel launched in 1874, and it was completed in 1902. Continue reading “My Hometown Island: Alameda, California”