In September 2011 I played “Taps” for Dad. In September 2014 I will play “Taps” for Mom and Dad.
(Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) This will be my last post until I return from Pittsburgh on September 22, fresh from burying my mother of 64 years, Hannah Dick Macfarlan McKelvy. When we took Mom on her farewell tour of her native Pennsylvania in September 2011, we visited Homewood Cemetery where she will be buried Saturday. She wanted to visit Dad’s grave and to be sure everything was ready for her eventual arrival in Pittsburgh. She even joked that she was feeling quite well that day, thank you very much, and that there was no need to get out the shovels. But the day did come when we had to make the call to Homewood Cemetery and make “the date” for Mom. I am leaving Thursday morning by way of two Amtrak trains to make that date and to meet my brother Duck and sister Missy, and niece Annie, and Aunt Cynnie, and six cousins, and friends to say farewell to Mom and to be together in our grief and sorrow. We know this is not the final farewell and that we shall all meet again in the Sweet Bye-and-Bye. But for now, it becomes me to practice “Taps” and few more times before Saturday.
Posted in clarinet, grief, Hannah McKelvy, Motherhood, Pennsylvania, Pittsburgh
Tagged Funerals, grief, Hannah McKelvy, Homewood Cemetery, mourning, Pennsylvania, Pittsburgh
Where are the birds?
(Harbert, Michigan) I am happy to report that I never ran afoul of the Shore Patrol during my time in the U.S. Navy Reserves. However, I do patrol our shore for passing shore birds, and today, Wednesday, September 17, 2014, I was shuffling along the beach wondering where all the shore birds were when what should kwit up before me but a patrol of shore birds. I am far from birding proficiency, so I will leave it to the experts to identify said birds in my photograph. My best guest? Based on a good look at The Sibley Field Guide to Birds of Eastern North America, I am inclined to go with juvenile Sanderlings (Calidris alba). But your guess is better than mine, so please correct me if I am wrong. Happy Birding, Birders!
I’m going with juvenile Sanderlings, but please correct me if I’m wrong, and I’ll let you have my donut at the next BBC outing.
Posted in BBC, birding, Lake Michigan, Michigan
Tagged BBC, Berrien Birding Club, Birds, fall migration, Sanderling, shore birds, shore patrol, U.S. Navy
Proof that Mom planned for every trip.
(Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) Mom died June 4, 2014 in Bridgman, Michigan, having just celebrated her 93rd birthday on May 29. We had her Visitation in Chicago at Donnellan Funeral Home on June 10, and we celebrated her Mass of the Resurrection at the Church of the Holy Nativity in Chicago on June 11. We returned to Bridgman on Friday, June 13 for a Celebration of Life Service led by the Rev. Paula Durren. But, wait! We’re not done yet. Hannah Dick Macfarlan McKelvy was one travelin’ lady, so it is only fitting that we will travel to her native state of Pennsylvania on Saturday, September 20, 2014 for her Committal and a family reunion at Homewood Cemetery. Mom loved to get in the car, train, or plane and go, so it is no coincidence that we are traveling by car, train and plane to Pittsburgh to honor the great Matriarch of Clan Macfarlan and to return her to her native soil. Please know that she lived to the very end by this wonderful motto: May you live as long as you want to, and want to as long as you live.
Mom went back to Pennsylvania in 2011 to reunite with her sister-in-law Cynnie and nephew John and those not pictured.
You’ll be able to see Natalie coming and going to this October.
(Michigan City, Indiana) Never one to say: “Never will I get on a bike again,” Natalie naturally asked on her first day outside the house to be taken straight away to Bike Stop Cycling where she turned in her bruised helmet and bought a new one. After, of course, trying on a few for size, comfort, and maximum visibility. Our friends at Bike Stop said one should absolutely relinquish one’s helmet after a tumble, because, as they said: The helmet protects your head once, and then your head is on its own. So Natalie has a spiffy new Bontrager helmet for her noggin, and she hopes to model it on the open road, oh, say in mid-October when the colors will be at their peak and the promise of fall is full. Visit Bike Stop Cycling on-line at: http://www.bikestopcycling.com
Watching Natalie getting fitted for a new helmet reminded me that I am due for a new one too.