Sunday, March 11, 2012

What We Remember . . .

Mary Jones, Pop holding Tom, Fred, Kathleen, and Norine looking on.

Before moving onto my Dad's generation, I wanted to try to capture something of what each one of the grandchildren recalled about Norine and Fred, preferably in relation to the Ohio River.  However, I've not been able to translate my "wish" into a post.  So this is what I decided to do.  I'm going to list all of the grandchildren by family group.  I'm going to try to contact each and every one of them and try to get a one or two sentence quote that I can post on this page.  As I get them, I'll fill out this page.  The fun thing about it is that I will be forced to contact each and every one of my paternal cousins.  That should be fun.  So here we go:

Rose and Norine
The advantage of being first-born
Rose - Once a week, Gan would get on the bus and come to our house and would sew with my Mom.  Of course, Gan always preferred girls.

Fred - During the war, I would get together with Pop and we would have to "exercise" the cars that had been left behind.  When I stayed with them, one weekend I would go to Mass at St. Rose and the next week I would go with Pop to the Episcopalian Church. (Note: These comments were based on a conversation that Tim and I had when we met with Fred.  He also told us how he would go on road trips with Pop because Jan liked to stay home.  They would visit the Harleys in New York and the Hodges wherever they lived.  They would sleep in the car and prepare meals using the heat of the engine.  Pop even let Fred drive the car when he was underage).

Bob B. - -

Fred -

Peggy -

Bob J. = I remember the carmels regular and fudge, listening to Reds games on the radio in the dining room (Sunday afternoons I think), running around the house inside and out with Ted, the stairway to upstairs in the bedroom closet, and playing on the fields across the street. All of my memories from their house are good. It always seemed to be a lot of fun.

Gina - Reading some of the comments from the cuz's I agree with those memories. Remember, even though my dad was the middle child, Bob and I are in the younger group of grandchildren. Rose's first born, Betsy is a year older than I am. I think I am Nan's age and a year younger than Ted. I will be 55 next month. Bob and I called Norine by her name because we remember she did not want to be called grandma. We called Pops by "Butch" why that changed I do not know. I do remember the neat pedal operated sewing machine and we could lay there next to it and move the pedal with our hands while she sowed. She would always tell us to speed up or slow down. Then the carmels she had hidden in the china cabinet in the dining room. I remember my dad would have me ask Norine for more carmels so he could have some. He loved carmels but Norine said they were for the kids. I was always able to get him some. Then we use to sit on the floor by Butch's chair and spit the carmel juice into his spitoon. We would pretend it was chewing tobacco. We would also listen to the train from the backyard and hear the Reds on the radio. I also remember the 1964 flood where the basement was flooded to almost the top. You could only go down a couple steps. I remember seeing chairs bobbing up and down, and I thought the upright piano was floating too. Seeing the top of the cabinet. I asked how could it float and I was told of the air pocket in the cabinet allowed it to float. I did not understand that then but I thought it was neat. Bob does not remember the piano floating, so do I remember correctly as I was 7. I also remember the big kitchen sink, like a mini bathtub, which I got baths in. Also the "cool" box in the window for pies to cool. The backyard was small and there was a big retaining wall holding the hill back by the garage. I also remember the boys able to play back there and get up the path to the garage roof. Then I remember playing across the street in Highland School's playground. They had swings, a slide and a merry-go-around. I loved that and would laugh and yell to make Butch and Daddy make me go faster. Today I still love spinning rides, wonder why.

Kath - I remember Mom and Dad taking me there to spend the night.  As a young girl, the lumber yard in Golf Manor caught on fire.  Looking out my bedroom window, it appeared as if our house was going to catch on fire. (It was at least half a mile from our house).  I had nightmares for a long time and felt guilty when I realized I had left Karen in the room we shared as I crept along the floor to Mom and Dad's room.  When I figured out that Jan and Pop's house was made of wood, I cried, screamed and refused to spend the night.  I was too embarrassed to say why.  Thankfully, Mom and Dad took me home.  I always felt guilty about that.  Jan was my Godmother. I also remember Pop sitting at the dining room window looking at the river, chewing tobacco and using a spittoon.

Tom - As Tom put it, Tim was a "gutsy" little kid.  He remembers Tim wanting to try the tobacco that Pop was chewing. (Tom corrected me and said that Pop typically chewed the tobacco from a cigar).  At any rate, Tom, Tim, Pop and Dad were on the front porch when they finally gave in to Tim's pleas for some tobacco. They then enjoyed laughing at Tim's reaction to the tobacco.  Comes under the heading -- be careful what you wish for.

Tom's favorite story was about the bank pictured at the left.  My Dad gave that bank to his mother, but she did not know the combination.  She would put money into it and then wait for a visit from my Dad to open it and take out the money.  Tom was later given the bank, and since only Dad knew the combination, it could not be opened.  Tom asked his son Mark to try to crack the code, and Mark did just that in pretty short order.  It's one of Tom's prized possessions.

Here is a list of some of the other memories offered by Tom:

  • In 1964, Tom went down to Eastern to help move things from the basement ahead of the river flooding.  He later went back to the house with Dad and was surprised to see 3-4' of water in the basement.
  • The river rose high enough that Tom was able to walk all the way around Highland School on a ledge that was normally a few feet above the ground.  Dad told Tom he had done that many times.
  • They had a very shallow fireplace with artificial logs in it.
  • Fred and Norine had a blue parakeet named "Arch" who was very entertaining.
  • Tom remembers a bread box outside of the back window, the stone wall in the back yard that was a haven for garter snakes, and the fact that there was a level above the wall that was high enough that you could step onto the garage roof.
  • There was always a lot of traffic on Eastern, but during one snow, Tom witnessed a local being pulled on water skis behind a pick up truck down the street.
  • Pop maintained a meticulous hedge that separated the house from the gas station next door.  Once someone in a car crashed into the hedge destroying a section of it.  The driver promised to pay for repairs to the hedge, but to Tom's knowledge, that never happened.
  • Tom remembers our Dad helping Pop paint the house in what Rose describes as "bus company" colors.
  • And last, but not least, he recalls the sewing machine -- high on the list of all of our memories.

Tim on ledge around Highland School
Tim - He used to say "ah, fish on it."  (Kath's note:  Dad used to say "crap in the bucket".  No cussing allowed). Tim also remembers going down to Fisher's grocery and questioning why can goods had prices like 13 1/2 cents.  It was to encourage customers to buy more than one.

Karen - I remember Pop always had a carmel to give us as soon as we got there and playing on Jan's sewing machine.  Note:  Rose told me they always spelled it "Gan".  We inherited Mom's spelling.

Ted - Ted's recollections seem to be similar to those of Tom's and Tim's.  He remembers going with Dad, Tom and Tim at the time of the '64 flood.  He also remembers walking around the ledge of the Highlands School during the flood.  But most of all, he remembers Sunday drives with Pop.  I (Kath) remembers them, too.  They always ended in ice cream.  Butter pecan was Pop's favorite.  I remember one day driving with the family on one of those Sunday drives down to Cynthiana, KY and having dinner at a restaurant that served dinner "family style."  That meant that bowls of mashed potatoes, veggies, and platters of meat were put on the table and passed around.  We figured out that Fred and Norine were 68 years old when Ted was born.  Contrast that with the 49-year old grandparents Rose knew.

Dan - I called Dan to find out what he remembered.  Just for the record, he was in Breckenridge, Colorado with his wife, Carol, and son, Chris.  The three of them are taking care of Dan's three grandchildren -- a grandson and twin granddaughters. Chris' wife is taking advantage of a photography class in Washington, D.C. -- a Christmas present from Chris.

Dan, remembers being taken to the nursing home where Norine was after suffering a stroke.  (I think all of us have that memory, but Dan was only five years old.  He remembers the '64 flood and going to 2424 Eastern to move things from the basement with Dad, Tom, Tim and Ted.  Tim remembers walking around the ledge at Highlands School during the flood -- Dan remembers not being allowed to do the same thing.
His memories of Pop are mainly of him living with Aunt Edith.  By the time Dan knew Pop, Pop was living with his daughter, Edith, suffering from macular degeneration.  He mainly stayed in a chair in his bedroom, chewing tobacco with a spittoon close by.  He told me that the Jones family boat was stored in Edith's garage during the winter.  Dan liked to go into the garage, climb into the boat and pretend like he was steering it.  He also recalls that John Kramer also liked to do that.

I share one of Dan's recollections that Aunt Edith always had a stock of Coca-Cola in bottles.  Going to her house meant getting a Coke.  The Joneses used Pepsi products -- sparingly at best.  Dan didn't realize there was actually a choice until he experienced a Coke at Aunt Edith's.  He liked it better than Pepsi.

Don - Don was only three when Jan died and seven when Pop died.  It was not long after Jan died that Pop moved in with his daughter, Edith. Both of them were 76 years old when Don was born. Contrast that with the grandparents Rose knew who were only 48 years old when she was born.  Don really didn't have the chance to "know" either of them  His main recollection is of the carmels.  Interesting that we all remember those.

Patty - My favorite and first memories was spending the night in the front bedroom and listening to the trucks roar by and shake the windows. I even remember Gi making a bed out of 3 chairs!! Morning was my favorite time b/c I would wake up go to the kitchen and Gi would be in front of the glass pantry and would be so HAPPY to see me and wish me GOOD MORNING !!!! She would then Squeeze me FRESH orange juice ! Oh my goodness I think of that when my own Grands are here and ALWAYS say Good Morning with a Big Smile…… then I go and pour a glass of Juice concentrate from the Refrig !!! LOL !

Being the Oldest of the Youngest Jones, it seemed our Grandparents walked slow, were Old, with gray hair etc. Pop would take us swimming at the LeBlond pool a dream come true for us Country kids!! One day he looked up to see my sister Jeanne who must have had enough running to their house, crossing busy Eastern Ave Street!!! Pop yelled Oh No, and took off RUNNING !!! Yes I had never seen him move that fast in my young life!!! Jeanne was 3 and boy did she get a spanking! God Love him, now I realize how frightening that must have been.

Although I too have the memories of Saturday night dinner, Bullhoof, Carmels, Ed Sullivan, Pop always staring out the window etc….. I was fascinated by the upstairs attic…I absoulutey thought it was haunted and that there were monsters up there. My favorite thing was the “CHUTE” that clothes were tossed in the bathroom and down they went to the basement. Jeanne and I used to ride our way down the Chute too!!! Something I wanted when Tom built our house, but b/c of the existing home he could not incorporate it L
My Gi Gi passed at the Nursing Home when I was 12 yrs old…..I remember going and crying so much and then looking at Rose and saying….YOU are the Luckiest of us all…..You being the oldest Grandchild Knew her the Longest!!!

June 18, 1968
One more thing, Tom put Pop in 1968 on his Honda 300 Motorcycle, helmet and all. I took a Polaroid photo of him and it look like he was riding it !We thought of this to Aggravate Sis (Edith) and my mother. Remember his sight was gone at that point, but the thought of aggravating his girls was enough to make him do it and I still have the photo to this day!

JeanneI remember going to visit them and stopping at China Town(one of our first discount stores).Mom would ask us not to mention this to GIgi,since she didn't feel it was a respectable place to shop. I too loved the carmel's in the china cabinet! The mysterious upstairs, the cool ringer washer machine,pedal sewing machine and the cold box in the kitchen! I love walking to Fischer's grocery store and have cooking lesson with Gigi,she taught me how to make Bull huff(roast with potatoes and carrots). I remember listening to baseball games with Pop,watching Lawrence Welk with both of them. Too many memories for words, most of all I remember their love!

Two-level backyard with remnants of a deteriorating garage in  background.
Photo Credit:  Bryan Phillips
Sue - I remember the backyard, I used to cut it with my plastic lawn mower and I remember the purple violets.

Nan - I certainly remember both the carmels and the sewing machine.  I also remember getting on the bus with Mom to visit.  She walked so fast my feet barely touched the ground.  I also remember Gee held the telephone upside down because of her hearing aid.  The smell of jasmine at her dressing table.  And that red rouge . . .

Tony - Norine died six weeks after Tony was born.  He was only four when Pop died.  Our grandparents had grandchildren over a span of 31 years.  What a difference in our recollections.

If I did my math correctly, there were 19 grandchildren.  Since Rose's kids were the same age as many of us, I'll add any recollections they (or any other great-grandchildren) would like me to include.  Just comment on the post any time.

Come on, Joneses, we're up to it.  Let's remember our grandparents!


  1. Jeanne Scardina VeenemanMarch 11, 2012 at 6:06 PM

    I remember going to visit them and stopping at China Town(one of our first discount stores).Mom would ask us not to mention this to GIgi,since she didn't feel it was a respectable place to shop. I too loved the carmel's in the china cabinet! The mysterious upstairs, the cool ringer washer machine,pedal sewing machine and the cold box in the kitchen! I love walking to Fischer's grocery store and have cooking lesson with Gigi,she taught me how to make Bull huff(roast with potatoes and carrots). I remember listening to baseball games with Pop,watching Laurence Welk with both of them. Too many memories for words, most of all I remember their love!

    1. Thanks, Jeanne. I reposted your text up into the body of the post. Love your memories.

  2. Kathy, this is a GREAT idea and follows right along with the idea of getting behind the documents and statistics. I wonder which of my cousins I could get to do this with me? Love this!