Showing posts with label Cousins. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Cousins. Show all posts

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Anna Ball's Granddaughters

In October in PA I finally got to be with my cousin, Carol  after maybe 47 years and just no contact.   She's  is the cousin  I  remember most from my father's brother, Eddie's family.  We had  little contact because my mother did not  get along with my father's mother, my grandmother Ball, photo here from 1958.  I remember Carol.  Her son found me through the AWON website and the tribute I'd written on my father.

Carol and her hubby Les are Floridians but spend time through the  summer in PA where they also have a condo.  It was all too short of a visit.  But when she and I talked this trip to PA I had already made up my mind that whatever date she picked would work!  We'd missed getting together  in  July and they were not in PA in May when we met with Chrissie, another cousin and Carol's sister and her hubby Larry.  Well, the day Carol suggested for us to visit them for hors d'oeuvres and drinks happened to be our 42nd anniversary.  We had other dinner plans that evening, but I said, "yes."   That shortened the  time we had to spend with them.  But then as Chrissie and I discussed after we met, this is all so new and we don't really know what to expect.  So maybe a short visit was the best for the first time anyway.  What if we did not like each other?  I was nervous again. 

On our short drive to their condo, we decided to ignore the turnpike directions she'd  given me and take the shorter roads back through the hills of PA from Mt. Top in Tarentum , where we park our  motor home.  Gertrude Pauline Spaghillicuddy (GPS) could take us there if we got lost.  It was not so  far but wouldn't you know it we ran into back road construction and detours.  How we got just where we needed to be, only My People & Angels  know!  But we made it despite my fretting that "Jerry, now we are going to be late!  We should have gone the other way!"  Should haves are  something I try not to  say, but it creeps back in frustration.  Should'a, could'a, would'a....are all worthless concepts.  Late, no.  In fact we were a little early and that generated further comments from me, "Now we are early and that might just be rude."   I had worked my mind through a frenzy about this visit.

From the minute I saw her I felt like I had regained another part of myself.  I don't know how skeptical Carol felt about our visit, but all my frenzies vanished.  I felt like I was  looking into a mirror too.  We have such a close  resemblance.  Well both of us color our hair, mine lightened as it has gotten way darker over the years and Carol's a redish tone.  Larry, Chrissie's husband had said in May, "You and Carol look alike especially the eyes."  Carol says everyone tells her she looks like Grandma Ball, and I agreed.  That means I must resemble my grandma Ball too. 

All my life I have been told I look just like my father.  I never thought any further back in the Ball family.  I remember when Carol's father saw me the last time in CA at  my uncle Henry's ( his & dad's baby brother.)  Uncle Eddie  started to  cry, tears flowed, "Patty, you look so much like your dad."  I was not very comfortable with him because I did not have pleasant memories from childhood and my mother's tales.  I  recall  thinking, "well who would I look like!"

 But if I look like my Dad and Carol and I share resemblances, and she looks like Grandma Anna Ball, then I must too and my dad must have favored his mother.  I can see looking at  photos  now how that is so.  When I first saw Chrissie in May I marveled at how much she looked  just like her dad, Uncle Eddie.  And I can see in some old photos how Eddie looked more like Granpap Frank  Ball, his father. 

This brings us back to Anna.  It has taken me a little bit of time to  actually get this onto the blog. It remains another of those puzzles about what do we inherit and what do we develop from our environment.  This is a lifelong puzzle to me and something I read about whenever I can.

Not only do Carol and I have a strong resemblance but we share similar interests--many  the same that Anna had sewing and gardening.  I  prefer roses while Carol grows magnificent orchids.  I have been into  dumping coffee grounds,  peelings, and all  else into the garden.  Carol reminded me that Anna did the same thing.  Carol called said Anna was the undiscovered, Alice Waters of her generation.  But the biggest interest Carol and I share is reading.  We email back and forth about what books we are reading.  Les, her hubby is an avid reader too so that must make it interesting at their home.  What to read?.  I mentioned that I tend to keep and collect books to which Les replied, "well they become friends."  I believe he said they have  about 5000 books.  Wow, I have not counted mine and I have downsized and donated, but I would be surprised if I have  that many.  Our shelves are full in the study though .  I could no more have a home without a place for books than I don't know what.

Carol and I both remember Grandma Ball's kitchen and the cookie jar.  How one time on one of my visits there she and I ate all the cookies inthe jar.  I don' think we got into any trouble for that trick.

Below is another  photo of our grandmother Anna.  I don't have a color photo of Anna  but the  facial similarities are certainly there.  What do you think?

And let's not forget Chrissy, Carol's sister, also my cousin.  We met in May.  When I saw her except for her blond hair, she looks just like her dad.  So perhaps Uncle Eddie looked like his father and my dad looked like his mother?   But there is a  resemblance between me & Chrissy also.  Who knows, guess we all just look like ourselves! 

I think Anna Ball's smiling somewhere that her grand daughters got together finally. 

Doggone it!  This blog will not allow me to put these photos adjacent to each other.  Some things have changed on Blogger and I'm not  pleased with those changes!!