Sunday, December 4, 2011

Christmas Workshop 12/03/00 - Best of...

Subj: Christmas workshop
Date: Sun Dec 3 21:54:54 EST 2000
first posted on this celebratory blog on 12/03/10

What a delightful day. Kayla and Nikia Childs came to a "Christmas Guru" craft workshop this morning.

Elsa was dubbed the Christmas Guru by Leah Heinrichs Rose a couple years ago. She certainly was this morning.

A special treat was having the girls dropped off at 11:00 a.m. by their grandmother, Mary Parker Grubb, who looks like a girl herself. It is difficult to fully grasp that Mary is a grandmother. I have known her since she was in high school and she is still beautifully young - it shimmers from her. It was special to have a few moments to talk with her.

Kayla and Nikia are already dear to our hearts. The two of them came to Elsa's Christmas craft workshops last year. Elsa offers her workshops to any child, at no cost; for the second year in a row, the only ones to nibble at her offer were these two delightful young ladies.

Because there were just the two girls and they were not baking (that will be the 12/17 workshop), Elsa worked on the coffee table in the living room, giving me a ringside seat. She covered the coffee table with a giant piece of holiday wrapping paper, so it looked Christmasy as soon as you walked in. Today's workshop was on "angels."

It was a pleasure to watch Kayla, who is 9 and Nikia, who I think is 7, watching as Elsa gave directions on making an angel from a plain paper plate. Their eagerness to get started and in picking out color schemes and embellishments was something to behold. They worked side by side but neither got in the other's way. They respected each other's territory. I was impressed again this year that each girl has a strong sense of personal style. After they were done with their angels, which were both gorgeous, they cut out and decorated butterfly ornaments and made tiny colorful cardboard heart boxes. Those little heart boxes are amazing to me.

The rule of thumb at Elsa's workshops is that the children can do whatever they want As she said whenever one of the girls asked if they could add this embellishment or use that color, "You can do anything you want." Another phrase I hear her use time and again is, "Be bold!"

Elsa played Christmas music, Kenneth Coy's Seasonal Improvisations and lots of Boston Pops. The two hours flew by. I enjoyed it all so much, I wore myself out and nodded off for a few moments right there in the big chair in the living room.

Robin and Amy picked them up. It was wonderful to have an opportunity to get to talk to the two of them - I came to know Robin from when he was in Australia. I got to know Amy as an adult (she was in Elsa's third class when she taught 6th grade, way back when) in a very unusual way that I will share with you sometime. We came to know them as a couple last winter, through Kayla and Nikia. I remember Robin last year asking Elsa why they had been so lucky as to have her put on three or four craft workshops for their daughters. I still can hear her simple, unembellished reply, "They were the only ones that signed up."

I am sorry for the children who did not leap at the chance last year or this, but am so very happy that Kayla and Nikia did. They - and their parents - have been blessings in our lives.

A happy Grammie is heading up the wooden hill to bed, filled with happy thoughts of three generations dear to my heart. Love to all - Gocky

Reposted with love in celebration of the 05/14 centenary of Gocky's birth.

Friday, November 11, 2011


From: Mindwalker1910

Subject: Laughing stars

Date: Thu, 29 Jun 2000 22:40:42 EDT

Today is Antoine de Saint-Exupery's 100th birthday. He died many years short of it, last seen in 1944 flying a Free French reconnaissance plane over the Mediterranean, a German fighter plane in hot pursuit. No one really knows for sure what happened, his body was never found, which seems a poetic fate for the author of The Little Prince.

Lots and lots of people know Saint-Exupery's most famous quote, the gift of wisdom the fox gave the Little Prince when they parted - "One sees clearly only with the heart. What is essential is invisible to the eye."

I would like to share a less famous piece from the book. It appears near the end of the book, as the Little Prince is speaking to the Aviator.

"People have stars, but they aren't the same. For travelers, stars are guides. For other people, they are nothing but tiny lights. And for still others, for scholars, they're a problem. For my businessman, they were gold. But all these stars are silent stars. You, though, you'll have stars like nobody else."

"What do you mean?"

"When you look up at the sky, since I will be living on one of them, since I'll be laughing on one of them, for you it will be as if all the stars are laughing. You'll have stars that can laugh!"

And he laughed again.

"And when you're consoled (everyone eventually is consoled), you'll be glad that you've known me. You'll always be my friend. You'll feel like laughing with me. And you'll open your window sometimes just for the fun of it... And your friends will be amazed to see you laughing up at the sky..."

* * * * * *

I love that passage for itself and because it makes me think of my father. In his final illness, he would look at us (I was 19 and Betty was 17), smile that gentle smile that hovered under his beard, and said, "Soon I will be hanging out the stars."

Because of my father, the stars laugh for me even to this day. When I am hanging out the stars with Pete, I hope they will laugh for you.

Good night, my friends. Am off to bed - Katharine Reynolds Lockhart

Thursday, November 10, 2011

ODE to JOY 12/29/00 ~ Best of...

Subj: Ode to Joy
Date: Fri Dec 29 07:49:13 EST 2000
(originally reposted 12/30/10)

The Dallas Symphony Orchestra closed its season last night with a rousing presentation of Beethoven's 9th Symphony, the Choral Symphony, which includes the Ode to Joy. My goodness, what a lot of memories it sparked.

It reminded me of a summer many, many moons ago when Wynne Pitcairn, Mim, myself and Elsa went to the shore for a week - Ventnor, or Brigantine or Ocean City. We had a house right on the beach.

Unfortunately, Wynne got sick almost as soon as we arrived. In true generous Wynne style, she did not want the rest of us to miss out on a good time, so she had Mim drive her back to her Horigan grandparents' Bryn Athyn home where she could get TLC and then Mim could come back to the shore for the rest of the stay.

We missed them when they left, so I decided that we should take the jitney (a small bus) up to Atlantic City, stroll the boardwalk and see a movie. We saw HELP!, which starred the Beatles.

My, how I enjoyed that movie. I remember the scene where the four of them entered what looked like the doors to four separate row houses, only to find they were in a large common room. It was a delightful movie. At one part, Ringo is threatened by the a man-eating Bengal tiger. A Scotland Yard inspector tells him that all will be well, that it was the famous man-eating Bengal tiger that had escaped from the famous London Zoo and that it had a fondness for the Ode to Joy. The inspector starts singing it, then Ringo joins in, then the rest of the Beatles, then the rest of the Scotland Yard contingent, then the group gets larger and larger until there is a shot of an entire stadium singing the Ode to Joy.

It also reminds me of the television broadcasts of the Olympics. I do not know if it still is, but the Ode to Joy was part and parcel of the telecasts at one time. It always set my spirits soaring.

Whenever I hear the Ode to Joy, I think of fun and exhilaration. I think Beethoven would be pleased.

Have a warm, snug day. We are expecting a major snowstorm tonight. Brrrrr.

Take care - KRL

Monday, November 7, 2011

RITUAL WASHING 04/03/00 ~ Best of...

Subject: ritual washing
Date: Mon, 3 Apr 2000 23:06:40 EDT
(this e-pistle was originally reposted July 12, 2010)

I am just about ready for bed. If I peek around the corner of the computer studio, I can see the Spring Tree* all lit up and lovely in the living room. The sound of the Glencairn Horns drifts up from the living room and will be the last thing I hear before heading to the land of Winken, Blinken and Nod.

It is a serene moment.

Elsa just washed my face. You might be surprised as what a lovely ritual face washing can be. Every moment of it makes me feel like being at a super posh spa.

(Oh, the horns just played the crescendo from “Calm On the List'ning Ear of Night” and I am all goose bumps.)

First, the warm, soapy lathering up. It makes my face feel quite pampered and fussed over.

Next, comes the first warm rinse.

Then, my favorite, the hot cloth draped from forehead to chin. Ahhhh, that feels so good.

Then, the second hot application, this time focusing on my forehead. I do not know why my forehead likes so much attention, but there it is.

Finally, the cold application, which makes my face sit up and take notice.

The very last is having Oil of Olay applied to my face. Connie Rosenquist introduced me to Oil of Olay - not much hope of it doing a lot of good for this ancient face, but it feels so wonderful as it is soothed onto my face.

I never paid much attention to the sensual aspects (and I do not mean that in a sexy way) of washing my face when I did it myself. It was just one more thing to check off on my nightly routine. But now - ah, now it is a moment of luxury.

Blissfully yours - Ma Lockhart

*the Spring Tree was an artificial Christmas tree that we'd left up because, as Mom said, "It cast a lovely light." (One blessing of having an artificial tree - our 1999 Christmas tree was the first that wasn't fresh cut.) It was covered with hearts in February & decked out in spring flowers from March-May. The tree was set in the far corner of the living room, directly in Mom's line of sight from her bed.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

CHAMOMILE 02/25/00 ~ Best of...

Subj: Mindwalkers - Chamomile
Date: 2/25/00 10:45:21 PM Eastern Daylight Time
(this e-pistle first reposted may 22, 2010)

There is something especially soothing drinking chamomile tea, especially after an arduous outing. From the first moment I take the box of tea out of the cupboard, I feel happier and more relaxed. The chamomile boxtop has a picture of a woman with long hair in a flowing dress on a swing, a thatched cottage in the background - lovely. My favorite boxtop is the Echinacea Cold Season tea ~ a koala wrapped in a quilt, a pot of tea and box of tissues perched on a tree limb, holding a hot cuppa in his hand; a kookaburra sits across friom him, in the background a kangaroo and another koala & a billy and in there is just a bit of Ayers Rock. Quite a lot for a little box!.

I earned a hot cuppa chamomile tonight. Had my first C.T. scan at 8:00 am. I thought I must have confused the date, Holy Redeemer Hospital looked empty. But it was the right night, afterall. I had asked my doctor and I had asked his nurses if it was a difficult test and they all said it was easy. I guess easy is a comparative term, because I did not think it was. I found the MRI easier. That surprised me, because I get terrible claustrophobia and I expected the MRI to be awful. But they put on some Nat King Cole and it was pleasantly warm and I actually fell asleep. The C.T. scan, on the other hand, was uncomfortable and the room was chilly.

All the way home, I thought about a hot cup of chamomile tea, a few SnackWell crackers, and a bit of crystalized ginger. It was every bit as soothing as I thought it would be. Ah, for the simple pleasures of life.

Love to all - M/G/N/AK/K

reposted in sweet memory of its original poster, Katharine Reynolds Lockhart, by her transcriber/daughter, Elsa (Deev) Lockhart Murphy, in celebration of the Gramster’s centenary (May 14)

Friday, November 4, 2011

GOOD GRIEF 03/07/00 ~ Best of....

Subject: Good Grief, Charlie Brown
Date: Tue, 7 Mar 2000** 23:41:00 EST
(the following e-pistle was first reposted in june 2010)

A discussion group that I have been part of for some time has included some interesting thoughts recently about grief. Seems a lot of people (including ministers and doctors) feel uncomfortable addressing the idea of grief over the loss of a loved one.

Why is it that people think it would be comforting to tell someone in the freshness of loss that they should be happy because the loved one is "in a better place"? Grief is not frivolous; it is an important part of living. Well, yes, people who grieve like Queen Victoria did - in an all-consuming fashion - do seem to be going overboard and forgetting the living. But normal grief at the loss of a loved one is an important growth step.

This was recently brought home to me by something Elsa told me. A very young friend's grandmother died after a long and sad illness. The little girl was, naturally, feeling desolate and was unusually somber in school. Instead of just letting the little one feel her sense of loss, her teacher – with the best of intentions - said, "Don't be sad!" in a light tone. Why wasn’t it okay for the little girl to be sad?

When Pete died at the relatively young age of 61, a doctor friend of ours, someone I respect and whose opinion I value, said to me, "Well, Kay, it's been six months since Pete passed away. Time to be getting on with life."

Luckily, I just thought he was bonkers.

Life would never be the same, just as it was never the same after Ian, our youngest son, died. Oh, the sun came out and happy times returned, but the sky was never quite the same shade of blue. Our oldest, Peter, said to me several years about Ian died, when tears welled up in my eyes over some small reminder, "You still miss him, don't you, even after all this time." He just couldn't get over it. When his own son turned 11 years old, Peter told me, "I understand now. I cannot imagine what I would do if anything happened to Reynolds."

For weeks after Pete died, I just sat in the big chair in the living room and felt at a complete loss. I had just lost my heart. The grief was not for Pete. How many people do you know who grieve on behalf of the person who died? Not many. I grieved for a loss beyond my comprehension.

When parents or siblings have a terminal illness or injury, adults wonder what to share with the children. Truman Capote was permanently scarred by his adored grandfather's death - not wanting to traumatize the child, the adults told him his grandfather "went away." Unimaginable. Then, again, I have heard some strange tales from friends within my own church about how adults in their lives handled (or mishandled) what they told or did not tell children about a loved one's death.

There are different forms of grief:
> There is the personal grief when a loved one dies.
> There is community grief, as when a young person dies in war. I remember the sadness that swept over Bryn Athyn when Richard (Pat) Walter died in World War II - it brought us together and many of his classmates called their sons Richard in his honor. Including, I believe, Richard Simons, whose death in Vietnam again brought Bryn Athyn together in grief.
> There is national grieving, as when Charles Schultz and Jim Henson passed away.
> There is even international grieving. FDR, JFK, Diana come to mind. Cynics label it hysteria, but total strangers coming together in sadness, leaving bouquets outside wrought iron gates or tossing flowers at a passing hearse, can be healing.

Did you grow up thinking about grief as a normal part of life or did you get the message to "be happy" instead of feeling the loss? It is 41 years since Ian died and I still miss him. It is 26 years since Pete's death and I will always and forever miss him every day.

How do I hope my family and friends will grieve when this Ancient One finally shakes these mortal coils? With a sense of loss, longing for the good times we shared, forgiveness for the rotten stuff, and - hopefully - lots of partying.

It is very, very late (almost midnight EST) & I must hie this tired body off to beddy bye.

Love to you all – Mum

reposted with sweet memories of its author, KATHARINE REYNOLDS LOCKHART, by her scribe/daughter, Elsa Lockhart Murphy aka DEEV

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

WILLIAM WOLF DAVIS 10/30/00 ~ best of...

Date: Mon, 30 Oct 2000 07:11:21 EST
Subject: William Wolf Davis
(this e-pistle was originally reposted on 11/01/10

The Reynolds branch of my family may have the more distinguished heritage but the Davis side is rich with interesting characters.

My grandfather, William Wolf Davis, outlived three wives. His first and the mother of his children was Katharine Rebecca. I am named for her. She died when she was 45 years old. At that time, everyone thought she'd lived to a good age. Since she died before I was born, I have no memories of her.

I barely recall Grandfather Davis' second wife. In fact, I cannot remember her name, just that we called her Mom-Mom. That woman was a piece of work. When she cooked anything, she went strictly by the recipe, cooking something no longer and no shorter than it called for in the recipe. This was back in the days of wood-heated stoves, without the temperature controls we take for granted these days. My grandfather developed a stomach condition because of eating too much undercooked food. The kitchen was her department,so he would not say a word. One time, my mother made an early dinner for her brother, Aram, who was going out for the evening. Mom-Mom chewed her out, saying that if Aram could not eat with the family, he would not eat at all. She was a real tartar.

I do have more distinct memories of Sarah, my grandfather's last wife. Sarah was attractive to the eye, but inside she seemed to be a dried up, withered prune. A maiden lady when she married Grandfather Davis, he got the surprise of his life when she denied him the privileges of the marriage bed. Sarah said that, at their age, they were too old for that sort of thing. I got the impression from my mother that my grandfather did not agree, but what could he do.

As a staunch Methodist household of that period, there was no drinking, no dancing, no cards, no nothing at my grandfather's house. He only took liquor if he was having ”a spell”. It amazed me how many spells that man had.

I recall one time when he was visiting at our house in Arbutus. My brother Al made ginger ale and bourbon drinks for everyone, except grandfather. Grandfather Davis perked up and asked if he could have one too. Al was only too happy and poured a generous serving. Just as he handed it to Grandfather Davis, who should walk in but Uncle Aram.

Now, Uncle Aram was the staunchest of the staunch when it came to the "thou shalt nots." Everyone shot around a look of "what next?"

Uncle Aram looked at them all holding their highball glasses and grilled, "What are you drinking?"

My brother Al remained completely unflustered. (I was quivering in my boots.) "Why, we are all enjoying some ginger ale. Could I get you some?"

"Yes," replied Uncle Aram, "But add some water - ginger ale is too strong a drink for me."

So there we all were on the wraparound porch, Uncle Aram with his ginger ale with a splash of water and the rest with more spirited beverages.

A toast - to the characters in our families, who help build the character of our families!

Love to all – Gocky

Monday, October 31, 2011

IDEAL/REAL 03/20/00 ~ Best of....

Subj: Ideal /Real
Date: 3/20/00 10:08:08 PM Eastern Daylight Time
(this e-pistle was originally reposted on this blog on 06/20/10)

This week's Contemporary Service was given by Peter Buss, a thought-provoking presentation on Rachel & Jacob & Leah. There was a lot for me to ponder as I listened to the tape during dinner tonight.

I tend to lean heavily on what Peter described as "Rachel truths" – truths that bring to mind lofty ideals. I typically shied away from the less lovely "Leah truths" - those more mundane truths that help me see what is right in front of my nose, things that need to be done if I am to make the ideal real.

To me, love was a beautiful, spiritual ideal and it was my privilege to cherish it.

Now, I know that while that ideal is to be cherished, love is first and foremost an action verb. Love IS beautiful & spiritual ~ and it can also be a rough road to hoe, messy, inconvenient and downright confusing.

Love is the fuel & the spark that makes my ancient world go 'round.

XOXOXOXOXOX - the Gramster

reposted in sweet memory of its author, KATHARINE REYNOLDS LOCKHART, by her scribe/daughter, Elsa Lockhart Murphy aka Deev, in celebration of the 05/14 centenary of the Gramster's birthday

Sunday, October 30, 2011

OLD AGE AIN'T FOR SISSIES 07/14/00 ~ Best of ...

Subj: Journaling III - Old age ain't for sissies
Date: 7/14/00 11:58:28 PM Eastern Daylight Time
(this e-pistle first reposted on this blog on 07/21/10)

Actually, if you manage to get to 90 relatively sound of heart, mind and body (or any combination of those three), you have accomplished something pretty unusual.

To be honest, as I have inched closer and closer to my centennial, being old has gotten somewhat easier - actually, a lot easier. In my late 80s I began to see the humor and humanity in things much more than before.

Looking back, the toughest years were when my energies were beginning to flag and my body started slowing down. My proprium - my sense of self - felt threatened as it became clear that Katharine Reynolds Lockhart was far more than just the sum of her physical parts. Moving out of that hanging-on state to one of accepting that the fixtures and fittings were coming apart was like moving out of darkness and confusion toward lightness and the light. The concept of physical being, of time and relationships, became liberated. I was beginning to get the hang of these basic changes, when I was hit by a small stroke late last September.

That small stroke speeded up the process, liberating a different “me.” My mind felt strong, my spirit felt strong. As my body started to head south, it no longer had the energy to put up a fight about being temporary or even fake being permanent. My feet drag somewhat and I move a lot more slowly than I did, but most days my spirit soars, making itself felt more and more.

Nature has forced me into more meditative states and a slower, sssllooowwwerrrr tempo. Instead of being bored to tears sitting in the big chair in the living room or in my soothing rocking chair, it is surprisingly rewarding.

The problem is that young kids - looking through the eyes of a still preening self - feel sad and think, "How dull her life must be." Too many Ancient and near-Ancient Ones come to think those young'uns are right.

A friend asked me to write about old age and make all the younger folks envious of us Ancients. Growing old, even some of the sadder aspects of it, is part of the Lord's grand scheme. Let go of time-bound prejudices and fears of growing older. Marianne Williamson says that to get to the light, a person has to work through the darkness. In middle age, life can seem dark.

Work through it toward the light. Or perhaps consider a play - the closer and closer the actors come to the curtain going up, the more experienced they get, the more polished their performance and the better able they are to improvise when needed. It is the same with life. Think of us Ancients as master thespians, waiting for the curtain to be rung up.

It is past even this night owl's bed time.

Nite-nite and God bless - A Kid at Heart

reposted in sweet memory of its author, KATHARINE REYNOLDS LOCKHART, by her scribe/daughter, Elsa Lockhart Murphy aka Deev, in celebration of the 05/14 centenary of The Kid's birthday

Friday, October 28, 2011

SEVENTEEN 05/11/00 ~ Best of,,,

Date: Thu, 11 May 2000 07:27:49 EDT
Subject: Mindwalkers - Seventeen
(this e-pistle, first reposted on this blog on 08/13/10, is reposted ~again~ in honor of Bryn Athyn Community Theater's current production, Ayisha Synnestvedt's adaption of Booth Tarkington's Seventeen, one of the books Mom read aloud to her kids as we washed & dried dishes)

I keep looking at a photo that Elsa copied and framed and put on the hutch cabinet next to where I sit for most of the day. It is a formal yearbook photo of Pete taken when he was around 17 in his last year at Harrisburg Academy.

When I look at it, my maternal feelings make me want to put my arms around him and tell him everything will be all right. He just looks so vulnerable.

Pete's adored mother, Lillian, died when he was 12 after a lingering illness, following a stillborn birth.

Imagine how close a mother and only child would be.

Then, heaping unimaginable heartbreak on top of the tragedy of losing his mother, his father remarried in just over a year; Pete's step-mother was the woman with whom his father carried on a long-term relationship ~ including while his mother was alive. (Pete always believed that the cause of his beloved mother's death was a broken heart ~ she just gave up.)

When Pete was given his choice of prep schools, including Haverford, he chose Harrisburg Academy. It was far enough away that no one would expect him to come home over weekends.

It is not surprising, given his background, that his view of an effective family was based on stability and caring support rather than big salaries and fancy fittings.

When he fell in love with me, his step-mother told me she was so glad that I was going to marry Pete because he was starving for love.

Well, he got it, alright! It war a pleasure.

Give a loved one an extra hug for me tonight - Pete's Own True Love

reposted in sweet memory of its author, KATHARINE REYNOLDS LOCKHART, by her scribe/daughter, Elsa Lockhart Murphy aka Deev, in celebration of the 05/14 centenary of Pete's Own True Love's centenary

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Semper Perge 05/27/00 ~ Best of Mindwalker1910

Subj: Mindwalkers - Semper Perge
Date: 6/9/00 9:10:07 PM Eastern Daylight Time

(this e-pistle was first reposted on this blog on 05/27/10

Here in Bryn Athyn - where we have an elementary school, high school, junior college, senior college and theological school (with its wonderful masters program open to one & all) - the end of May and early June seems swamped with graduations. Today was 8th Grade graduation and tomorrow will be high school commencement. College graduation was over Memorial Day weekend, I believe.

I missed out on an elementary school graduation. Garrett Heights School went up to 9th grade and I was transferred after 8th grade to Eastern High School along with other "academic" students - they only kept the "business" students for 9th grade. We was gypped!

My one & only graduation was from the Academy of the New Church, which I attended for junior and senior years. The Class of 1928. Back then, and in fact until a few years ago, all the upper schools – the high school, the two colleges and the theological school - graduated at the same time.

My mother, who was living in Baltimore, sent me a beautiful dress for the Senior Dance - a short dress (remember, this was the era of the flapper and short dresses were the rage) of blue crepe de chine, with cream-colored chiffon sleeves. That was when I discovered blue was my color! I have been wracking my brain as to whether John Frazier or Phillip Odhner took me to the dance and I just cannot remember for the life of me.

My graduation dress was a similar style - white, of course, and as straight as possible falling just below the knee, with a deep hem of tiny pleats. I had lost a lot of weight the previous summer, so I looked practically fashionable.

Anita Synnestvedt (Woodard) and Beryl Caldwell (Odhner) were the fashion setters in our class. I can still see their outfits – sharp looking suits with unshaped jackets that brushed the tops of their legs over straight white skirts. I remember that Beryl's was a beautiful light brocade, which gave it extra interest. Anita and Beryl had classic taste and were what I like to call "the genuine article."

What did the boys wear? I have no recollection, but knowing who they were, they had to look pretty sharp - Dick Gladish, John Schoenberger, John Frazier, Oliver Powell and Graham Gurney are just some of my fellow graduates.

Our banner - all ANC classes have banners - was done in silver threads on a black velvet background, with the motto, "Semper Perge" - "always forward." Our class ring reflected the banner, a gold ship on a black enameled background. As I recall, it set me back around $10.00.

The Assembly Hall was not built at that time and the Asplundh Field House was many, many decades down the pike. We graduated in the DeCharms Hall auditorium, which was on the top floor at that time.

The graduating girls' families would present them with flowers. My parents were not able to be at the ceremony, so I did not expect to have a bouquet. Peggy Cowley (Schiffer), who was all of around 12 years old, was very sad that I would not have a bouquet, so the dear wonderful girl made me a bouquet of roses out of her family's garden. No other bouquet could have been carried with more pride or happiness.

I remember the music as we, the graduating class, marched in – Edward Elgar's "Land of Hope & Glory." I felt like nobility walking into that.

As the senior girls were seated for the graduation ceremony, the junior girls came up and stood behind us and entwined our hair with a wreath of ribbons and flowers. I kept that wreath for a long time.

I received my degree from the Girls School headmistress, Dorothy Davis. Elsa asked me to describe "Dodo" - she was Clara Davis Pitcairn's twin sister and, like her sister, Miss Dorothy could be very abrupt and direct, never one to pull her punches. She was not out to win a popularity contest; her eye was always on the prize of making sure "the girls" got a top notch New Church education.

Elsa asked me what I would say to the graduating Class of 1928 - or 2000, for that matter - if I had the chance. I would tell them what my father always said, "When you stop learning, you are dead." I would tell them to continue their education, whether in college or not. Some of the "brightest and best" people with degrees and advanced degrees know squat compared to less "highly educated" folks with a good sense of people and common sense. That they should welcome change. To not give themselves airs, to take themselves lightly. In short, remember "Semper Perge" - -"always forward."

Nite-nite and God bless, with special love to Kelly, Carl, Meg and any other graduates who are dear to my heart that I might be leaving out. - - The Gramster

reposted with sweet memories of its author, KATHARINE REYNOLDS LOCKHART, by her scribe/daughter, Elsa Lockhart Murphy aka DEEV

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

CANBERRA 07/31/00 - Best of Mindwalker

Date: Mon, 31 Jul 2000 23:58:38 EDT
Subject: Canberra
(this e-pistle was first reposted 07/31/10 – ten years to the day after it was composed)

As I was writing about Williamsburg, my thoughts kept turning to the capital of Australia, Canberra. (Whenever he saw my notes, John would joke that I was misspelling cranbury. That John, he is a cheeky one.)

Kerry and Mike took myself and the kids to Canberra to visit Barry & Christine Ridgeway (Gretchen, I believe she is a relative of Ruth's) and to show off their capital.

It is impossible to describe Canberra, which did not even exist at the beginning of the century. I was surprised to find out that it was designed by an American. It has a beautiful location. Unlike Sydney, Canberra is surrounded on all sides by land, land and more land. It somehow feels like it was carved out of nature. Magical. Like Sydney, it has a unique energy and, like Sydney, Canberra is unlike any other place on earth.

The architecture ranges from very, very modern Government House to the Williamsburg-inspired US Embassy. It is fitting to have Williamsburg's Georgian style as an embassy, since late colonial Wiliamsburg and early colonial Australia were contemporaries.

Mike had picked up three loaves of sourdough bread back in Sydney – one for the ambassador, one for his secretary, and one for us to nibble on the way. We had the honor of meeting the ambassador and his wife. I do not remember his name, but her first name was Elkin - very unusual. This was during Jimmy Carter's presidency and as I recall the ambassador was a southerner and you know how those southerners can make you feel pretty special.

We had a wonderful time. At night, Mike and Kerry would go off for a quiet dinner on their own while I kept an eye on Scott and Karen. After they got home, it was my turn to go out to dinner. By that time, I was ready for a little piece and quiet and did not feel the bit ill used by eating by myself. The silence was golden.

Silence brings to mind the Hall of Memory - the war memorial - which is what I remember best of all. To stand in that graced place that honored those who fell in Australia's wars - there was a feeling of awe unlike anything I had felt before or since.. I felt close to the other world and the tears came. Everyone there was silent.

Love to you all from a suddenly hushed KRL.

With special thoughts and love to Carolyn, who loves Canberra - Grandma L.

reposted in sweet memory of its author, KATHARINE REYNOLDS LOCKHART, by her scribe/daughter, Elsa Lockhart Murphy aka Deev, in celebration of the 05/14 centenary of Nan’s birth

Monday, October 24, 2011

NEW HOPE, NOW & THEN 02/24/00 ~ Best of Mindwalker

Subj: WOMEN: Mindwalkers ~ New Hope, now & then
Date: 2/24/00 11:37:56 PM Eastern Daylight Time
(this 02/24/00 e-pistle was first reposted 05/21/10 in celebration of what would have been the gramster's 100th birthday)

Just back - at 10:10 p.m. ~ from a toot with Elsa up to New Hope. She took a bottle of sparkling nectar up as a surprise for friends who will be staying at a stunning inn for the weekend. A favorite R&R spot for John & Elsa, it is built within the ruins of a old mill. I went inside last spring with Elsa & Gail Cooper and it is a knock out. Dramatic ruins and dramatic interiors, yet somehow it was cozy. There was a warmth there.

Heading up, we talked about this time - was it really 63 years ago? - when Pete & I were planning our wedding. We thought New Hope would be a just-right place to spend our honeymoon. Apparently we were way ahead of our time, because when I went to the travel agency at the department store I worked at (yes, department stores really did have travel agencies in those days), the person looked at me like I had suggested Mars would be nice. "No one goes to New Hope. There's not even any place to stay."

Well, Pete & I knew that could not be so. New Hope was too charming not to have overnight lodgings. Back then, it really and truly was a bohemian artist's colony, with a special feeling about it that disappeared long before many of you were a gleam in your parents' eyes. We knew it was the place for us. So, one Sunday we packed up a picnic lunch and headed to Wayne Junction and the one train that went to New Hope. One train up in the morning, one train back at night.

We had a wonderful time traipsing all over New Hope that day. We settled down along side the canal and ate our lunch and talked about our wedding and our future. It was an idyllic day. Unfortunately, the travel agent knew of what he spoke - we could not find so much as ONE place for overnight visitors to stay. It was a great day and a great disappointment, at the same time. And it seems like yesterday.

Best wishes on you all. I am headed up the wooden hill ~ M/G/N/K/AK

(reposted with sweet memories of its author, KATHARINE REYNOLDS LOCKHART, by her scribe/daughter, Elsa Lockhart Murphy, aka DEEV)


Sunday, October 23, 2011

M-I-C-K-E-Y M-O-U-S-E ~ ~ Best of Mindwalker1910

Subj: M-I-C-K-E-Y M-O-U-S-E
Date: Fri Nov 10 21:00:17 EST 2000
(first reposted 12/13/10 in celebration of what would have been the gramster's 100th birthday; selected to commemorate Whitney & Chad taking the girls on their 1st visit to DisneyWorld earlier this month ~ great way to celebrate Chad's 40th!!)

When I think about going to the various parts of DisneyWorld, I feel overwhelmed. It was such a... well, such a big experience is the best way to express what is in my heart. I expected to have a really good time, I did not expect to be as moved as I was.

First of all, understand that this place really did seem like the happiest place on Earth. In the four+ days we were in DisneyWorld, I did not see a single parent snap at a child, nor did I hear a single child whine or complain.

When I think of the children, I think of the little kids who were having the time of their lives with these water jets that came up through the pavement in one part of Epcot. I can see the smiles and hear the great hoots of glee. What a memory.

I see the little children gathered around the storyteller in the "England" part of Epcot as he leaned on his staff and spun a tale.

I see the children - and the parents and the grandparents - when they spotted Pluto or Tigger or Donald Duck or the biggest and best of them all - Mickey himself - walking around.

I was there and Elsa was there, but in my heart so were Mim and Ian, both of whom watched the Mickey Mouse Club back in the 1950s. Mim was a bit old for that sort of thing, being in her early teens, but she did so much with the "Top Yard" kids - Roses, Grubbs and Lockharts - and other neighborhood children, watching Mickey Mouse Club was an extension of her interaction with them. Yes, both Mim and Ian were very much with me.

Ever since Pete and I went to England, I dreamed of going there with Elsa. We might not ever make it across the Atlantic together, but we did make it to the Rose & Crown, a pub that certainly seemed like a bit of transplanted England. We sat outside and had the jolliest waitress. We have a picture of her with yours truly, both of us grinning away like mad. Elsa and I ordered a sampler of ales along with our ploughman's lunch. Between the two of us, we polished off those ales quite easily. Time out of time and place out of place. What a gal that waitress was - I can't remember which part of England she was from. but the memory of her sets me smiling. My blessings to her, wherever she may be.

Elsa "blew the wad" by staying at Wilderness Lodge so that I could have the freedom of staying put where we were and still experiencing DisneyWorld - or - adventuring a field. As you have heard, I definitely went adventuring. However, if I had to pick my favorite spot in all of DisneyWorld, it would be Wilderness Lodge. I loved going out onto our balcony and seeing trees stretching out as far as my eyes could see. I loved sitting in that stunning yet cozy great hall. I enjoyed the people.

The 10th annual Teddy Bear Convention was taking place in DisneyWorld at the same time we were there. One evening, Elsa and I headed to the bar in Wilderness Lodge for a nightcap. As we sat there, talking, with my small black bear, Sasha, with us on the table, an attractive couple who looked to be in their 40s came up. They asked if we were there for the convention. It took me a moment to realize that the man was tenderly holding an even smaller bear in his hands. Yes, we were definitely among our own kind.

I loved the fact that Elsa bought us plastic travel coffee mugs that I could refill for free as many times as I liked. I loved watching the families walking to and fro, always happy. I loved the great care the staff took keeping everything neat and tidy. I loved looking up and up and up at carved eagles and bears and other animals tucked here and there through that magnificent structure. I loved the awesome - an understatement - fireplace. I loved every nook and cranny of that magical place. All I have to do is close my eyes and I am back in its shelter and I am happy and smiling.

This smiling Grammie is heading up the wooden hill, with loving thoughts of
DisneyWorld and you to keep me company.

Nite nite and God bless.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

DONA NOBIS PACEM (05/29/00) ~ Best of Mindwalker1910

Subj: Dona nobis pacem
Date: 5/29/00 12:18:46 PM Eastern Daylight Time
From: Mindwalker1910
(first reposted 05/31/10 in celebration of what would have been the gramster's 100th birthday)

It is 11:15 a.m. and a crowd of Bryn Athynites are gathered at the flag pole in Boro Park to honor our nation's veterans. The cathedral overlooks the ceremonies from atop its hill.

I miss the ceremony. Every Memorial Day, Pete and I would get the kids ready, load up the buggy if there was a little one, and off we would go, up Alden Road, up the Black Path, to South Avenue and across to the park. Now, as back then, there are speeches, the Boys Scouts march, the Girls Club leaves a wreath at the memorial, everyone will join in singing the national anthem, a group from a near by VFW post will fire off a volley in memory of those who fell, someone will play "Taps" in the distance, and there will be a moment of silence. I am with them all today, if only n my heart.

For some still inexplicable reason, one year they asked Elsa to speak. She wasn't a veteran, wasn't a teach or community leader. Apparently, the person scheduled to speak fell through and the head of the selection committee worked at Prudential and so did Elsa and they ran into each other at the elevator and the other person saw her opportunity and took it. Elsa, never one to turn down a chance at a "jolly pulpit," came on board.

Elsa was 8-years old when Mike joined the Navy. He served in the Reserve while in high school and got his active uniform almost as soon as he got his diploma. The slogan is "Join the Navy and see the world." Mike did. He had the great good fortune to be a plank owner (original crew) of the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS Enterprise, on which he made two tours of duty of the Mediterranean. But what stopped our hearts back home was when the Enterprise took part in the Cuban Blockade during the Cuban missile crisis. That was scary. Mike and his shipmates were part of anuclear-powers showdown on our very doorstep that had us on the brink of unimaginable war. Like we had in the Great War and World War II, back home we waited and prayed.

Elsa's talk at Boro park focused on those uncertain times, times which most of the adults standing around the flag pole could remember in some way, and how it was for those of us waiting, waiting, waiting. She threw in her favorite bits of Lincoln, including doing right as we see the right. Then she did a gutsy thing - she lead the gathering in song. Elsa does not have a pitch-perfect voice, so I was startled when she came out with the request to sing. She got us all into singing the round, "Dona Nobis Pacem." It was pretty raggy, but we did it. Mim and I knew as soon as we heard Elsa invite everyone to join in that it was more than simply appropriate to the moment, that the tribute was pulled from a family-favorite M*A*S*H episode that honored Father Mulcahey and his work of peace among the ravages of war.

May you all have a memorable Memorial Day, whatever flag your service men and woman serve under. May the Lord continue to "Give us peace."

Love - Mum L.

<< My thanks to Lori Nelson (and loving thoughts of her parents, especially Lou) for the words to "Taps" ~ "Day is done, gone the sun, from the lake, from the hills, from the sky. All is well, safely rest, God is nigh..." >>

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

In Praise of My Menfolk (02/23/00) ~ Best of Mindwalker1910

Subject: Fwd: Mindwalkers ~ in praise of my menfolk
Date: Wed, 23 Feb 2000 20:50:21 EST
(first reposted 02/25/11 in celebration of what would have been the gramster's 100th birthday)

In looking ahead to my March 7 surgery and recuperation, today I did what any right thinking woman of my generation would do - got my hair done.

John took me to the hairdresser, who has been doing my tresses for the past 40 years, gently helped me up the stairs and did not leave until he was sure I was safely tucked away in the beautician chair. When he picked me up, there was a little time for Jo and John to get to know each other. It seems that every woman I know takes to John right off and he takes to them. He settled me in the car, then headed back into the beauty parlor. Well, I was beginning to get "worried", when he reappeared about 5 minutes later - with a stack of magazines under his arm that Jo thought we'd like perusing.

When I look at John, I cannot help but think of my dear husband, Pete. Actually, his name was Raymond Lewis Lockhart, but his uncle took one look at him in his baptismal gown and exclaimed, "He's not a Raymond, he's a Pete!" And Pete he was from that day forward.

I know that we are not supposed to make spiritual judgements, but I just know in my heart that my loves will someday be fully reconjoined with the loves that are my Pete. He made me feel so special, so cherished and appreciated.

It has been 26 years since Pete died and I miss him every day - morning, noon & night. ("All I do the whole day through is dream of you.") From the day we met in 1935, it seemed we knew the other was THE one. Pete was so shy, the fellow who brought him to the party slipped one of my mother's silver teaspoons into his pocket so that Pete would have to call me again. But he was never shy with me. From the first kiss to our last in this life, he was my ardent lover and loyal best friend.

I just came across an everyday Christmas gift tag - about 1 1/2 " square with a mug of holly against a red backdrop - that was on a long-ago present. The tag is anything but everyday to me: "Kay ~ So little a thing to express all the strengths that are mine through your love and affectionate understanding. Pete"

Love to all - M/G/N/AK/K

Monday, October 17, 2011

from 10/30/00 ~ Tonche

Subj: Tonche
Date: Mon Oct 30 08:32:43 EST 2000

Almost a month without a posting from me. All is well. In fact, all is beyond the beyond. I think that the reason I haven’t written is because words are inadequate to describe what I have experienced this month.

Miracles do happen.

Earlier this month, I attended the Women’s Weekend at Tonche (outside of Woodstock, NY). I wanted to go last year, had planned on going, but could not make it because I was still recuperating from my “episode.”

This year, I got there.

It is awful, the way that words fail me when I am most deeply, deeply moved. My vocabulary does not include the words to describe what I saw and felt over that remarkable weekend. I felt totally wrapped up in love.

It was a weekend filled with old and new friends, renewed energies, and an unexpected chance to get in a good visit with my older daughter, Mim. I do not know who was more surprised to see the other person there – Mim or me! My age made it almost unthinkable that I would actually get there and keep going under my own steam for the whole time; Mim’s lack of transportation and own physical challenges make it equally challenging for her. What a blessing that we both overcame any obstacles to be there, in the heart of caring women.

Elsa was informed right off the bat by Deanna Nelson Odhner that she and the others would take care of me over the weekend. I felt like a mountain woman version of the Queen of Sheba, with my every wish and want taken care of. So much love, wonderful homemade food AND a view of the Catskills that would knock your socks off.

The one thing that I am going to share is a realization that came during ”sharing” time with the small circle of women I met with in the morning and evening. I had, over the two days, discussed bits and pieces of my life. I think it was on the second evening – or maybe it was on the last morning – that I mentioned that life had been easy on me. One of the young woman looked at me in disbelief and blurted out, “Mrs. Lockhart, from what you’ve described, your life has been anything but easy!” That got me thinking – it feels like the right word to describe my life is “easy,” but I can see what she meant. Perhaps “fortunate” is better.

One of the key blessings to come out of the weekend has been the gift of seeing things in a new light, with a richer awareness and a deeper appreciation. For 2 ½ days, I basked in the happiness of being there with both of my daughters. I developed new friendships, especially with Julie Conaron, and increased the depth of old ones, particularly with Deanna.

I was up every morning bright and early and down to Danna’s house in plenty of time for breakfast, and I stayed up until the end of each program/discussion group. I felt strong mentally, spiritually and physically.

I said I was going to go and I went!

If only I could share all that was in my heart, all the images in my mind – what a glorious posting this would be!

Love to one and all, especially to my fellow mountain women – The Queen of Sheba (aka Grammie)

(first reposted 10/30/10 in celebration of what would have been the gramster's 100th birthday)

Sunday, October 16, 2011


Much to my own surprise, I took a hiatus between when Mom took that final fall and her memorial celebration, which I mistakenly recalled as today, October 16. (This morning, realized I'd flipped her dates - she was reunited with her O! Best Beloved on September 16 and her memorial was October 14, although I'll always & forever associate it with October's middle Sunday.)

Maybe it was too tender to be sharing her postings, my updates over those very tender days.

What I do know for absolute sure is how powerfully my mother has influenced my life in many marvelous, even miraculous ways over these past ten years, which closed - for me - today. Looking back at all I experienced, being mindful of the very active hand she seemed to have in so many of its best aspects, most revealing moments & expanding opportunities, am reminded again of what I said when Mom passed from us - "Mom didn't have a lot to leave as an inheritance. What she left is much like those old drawings that were once popular at store openings or special events ~ you had to be present to win."

And if you pushed me to say whether I do or don't believe she had an active hand in all that has happened over the past ten years that have lead me to such a glorious embarkation point to the rest of forever, I'd have to answer yes. If only because... of what I can't express. It resides in a heavenly realm.

So, now the hiatus is over. For the next month or so - as I wait for Michael David to send me the COMPLETE set of Mom's Mindwalker1910 postings - expect a reposting of "Best of Mindwalker" musings. And may heavenly blessings be on you all!

Monday, August 22, 2011

surprising myself

Am totally surprised at how I am unable to repost what was written since July 29th - too close to the heart to deal with as I actually live over the days we were living it ten years ago. When I'm able, will get them up. Won 't be "real time" but will be real life.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Wonder Woman - 07/31/01

Subject:  Wonder Woman

Date: July 31, 2001
That sums up Mom. Here she is, 91 with a fractured neck
(2 dislocated vertebrae - C1 and C2) and other unconfirmed
problems plus the usual assortment of health glitches that
come with being an "ancient one," and from all accounts
(Whitney's, Peter's and the nurse's) she is doing remarkably
well. Hear tell she ate almost all of her lunch & drank

all of her coffee and ate almost all of her dinner & drank
all of her coffee. Delightful surprise - the doctors are ap-
parently talking
about physical rehab and have give the
green light to
transfer her to a regular unit as soon as a bed
is available!
We'll miss the ICU nursing staff - especially
Jessie - who've given excellent care.

Going with the premise she'll be out of ICU in couple days,
it should be okay to send cards et al (verboten in ICU).
You'll have gotten/be getting an invit' to sign aboard Mom's

family & friends website at - KRL's Family Circus.
Thank goodness we got it up and running - if not populated -
two weeks ago as part of a journaling circle I facilitiated.
It'll have daily updates from Whitney or myself (albeit 2nd
hand from moi). I hope to get some pictures of Mom up on it

too, if anyone out there has a scanner.

We figured that she's getting MORE visitors than if she was

in Bryn Athyn. I could only go after work, whereas Whitney
works just 15 minutes away from the hospital. Mom has her
"angel child" - Erin - more or less in the area. Peter was down
there from last Sunday afternoon to tomorrow. Reynolds just

arrived home from Montana and I understand he is heading
down tomorrow. Bob and Kathryn & kinder were able to drop
by for a visit this afternoon before heading back home to
Newcastle, CA via BWI - - what timing!!

Even though it leaves me with just 3 vacation days for the rest

of the year, I took today off to recuperate from driving. John
offered to drive yesterday, but I drove all the way home.

Back to the coal mines, as Mom says, tomorrow.

from ELM - Mom sitting up!!

Subject: Mom Sitting Up!
Date: July 30, 2001

When we left Alexandria Hospital at 12:30 p.m., Mom
was more or less asleep. Jessie, her wonderful ICU
nurse, had a difficult time waking her up. She tried
"Katharine" - no luck. But "Mrs. Lockhart" seems to
work like a charm - maybe she should try "Pete's Wife"
and see what happens!

Most of what Mom said when she was semi-awake was
inaudible, but there were three things she clearly
said when I was there. When she first woke up and saw
it was her co-Squirrel Havenites, she got this sweet
smile and asked, "Do you like my new dress?" A hospital
gown had replaced the nightgown she was wearing at ad-
mission and through most of yesterday.

Later, when I was getting ready to say my goodbyes,
I promised to get her a big bowl of vanilla ice cream
when she gets back home. She fluttered her eye lips a
bit at that and said, "You're killing me." Forgot that
on the drive down, she'd craved vanilla ice cream;
alas, each time she ordered it, it wasn't available.

When I was heading out the door, I realized she was
trying to tell me something. I went back to the bed,
leaned over close to her lips and listened intently to
what she needed me to know.

"Don't forget to get yogurt and Great Grains."

Can we spell "sharp as a tack"?!?

Peter came down yesterday and will stay until to-
morrow, which is wonderful. The person who made my
leaving almost bearable was his daughter, Whitney
Lockhart Siddons.

From the moment she got the word on Sunday morning
to my call earlier this evening, Whitney has been
awesome. It was Whitney who got Chris and Erin's
phone # and called them with the situation and the
fyi we were cancelling brunch. She and Chad were
at the hospital for hours and hours and hours on
Sunday and she was back again today, making sure
the hospital had necessary signatures and being
invaluable in a dozen other ways.

If it hadn't been for Whitney, who works about
10-15 minutes from the hospital, it would have been
impossible for me to head back home, even though I
have no other option.

Even at that, even knowing Mom was in the best hands
possible and at what seems like an excellent hospital,
I cried a good part of the way home. And I was driving,
which gave it a whole new twist.

It is impossible to describe the feelings that set
the tears flowing - it feels more related to poignancy
than any other emotion. One of the many times when I
wish I was French - they seem to have so many words and
nuances to describe a vastly wider and sublty of emo-
tions, n'est pas?

We got home aroung 5:30 p.m. First thing I did was call
the ICU and talked to Jessie. (They only allow one family
member to communicate; in our case, two - Whitney and

Wonder of wonders, found out that Mom was sitting up
and eating real food - a bit of a challenge, since her
neck is in a brace, but she was doing it.

"She is being fed by her "Angel Grandchild," Jessie
reported. "Erin's there?" I asked, since she is Mom's
Angel Child.

"No," answered Jessie, "It is her Angel Grandchild,

Well, I was bowled over. Whitney got on the phone and
confirmed that Mom was indeed eating. An attempt to put
a feeding tube down her throat didn't work - and she
did NOT like the idea at all - so they asked if she
thought she could handle real food.

Mome explained that she's having surgery tomorrow
(true, she's scheduled for surgery back here) and can't
eat the night before. Whitney assured her that I had
cancelled the appt (true), at which point Mom appar-
ently said, "Bring on the grub!" So, Peter and Whitney
had the pleasure of helping serve Mom's dinner tonight.

Exactly what her condition is and how they are going
to treat was still iffy as of late this afternoon.

Interesting - when John and I headed for the elevators,
a doctor I'd never seen before walked past us, talking
on his cell phone. "About Mrs. Lockhart... " was all
he had to say and I had him in my sights.

Interesting - I forget what his speciality is, but he
told me that they are considering the possiblity that
the cervical disk dislocation might not be a new injury,
that it might predate the fall.

Interesting possibilities.

At this point, I get the feeling that they are comfort-
able talking about the one certainty - the fractured
neck - and determined to get more definite answers
about the rest.

Until they have the answers, they're not going to
theorize about care. Good going!

I have had people ask about her room # for cards and
flowers. Will let you know as soon as she is out of ICU.
Until then, no cards, no letters and certainly no phone

The plan, at this point, is for me to head down to VA
after work on Friday. I know Whitney is doing a grand
job as family point person. This doesn't have anything
with needing to be there for Mom and everything about
needing to be there for ME.

No idea when she'd be able to head back home. I could
not ask for her to be in a better place. She has warm
affection for Alexandria from numerous visits over the
past quarter century - Pam Green's wedding in the early
'70s, the Scottish Walk, the Virginia Scottish Games,
swinging down just for the fun of it.

As Whitney says, Virginians seem to cherish their older
ladies and I can see that in the care & consideration &
sense of dignity the physcians and staff have already
shown. She has a beloved granddaughter within easy hug
range and that granddaughter is not one to brook any
nonsense from nobody, no way, no how. Pity the nurse or
physician who appears to be blocking what her Gocky needs!!

And the state bird of Virginia is the red cardinal!!
Need I say more??

We are being well taken care of. Paul & Judy took us to
lunch yesterday, Louise is shooing us out of the house
tomorrow. Bob & Kathryn Ripley took us out to dinner
tonight; they are in town on their way down to Baltimore
tomorrow,heading home to California from BWI Airport
after a week of checking out Fenway Park, Yankee Stadium
and other baseball shrines. Those dear, wonderful people
took these two weary folk out to dinner even though
they're weary themselves, having driving down from above
Cooperstown, NY.

Such courtesies and company are balm for our souls.

Am bushed - what a day. It is 11:20 and I am past tired.

Am off to bed. Will keep you posted on Mom. *eln*

Mom's Condition 07/30/11

Subject:  Mom's Condition

Date: July 30, 2001

Not as much to tell as I would like. What we know - Mom fell this morning
around 6:45 a.m., walking from the bathroom at the Alexandria (Virginia)
Holiday Inn to her bed.

As she had throughout the night, she's gotten my assistance getting out
of bed, but unlike earlier visits, this time she did not get my help returning.

Anyhow, John and I heard a great crash and found Mom spread out, her
head against the bedroom door. She was initially conscious, but not
responsive. Within moments, she was responsive, then able to com-
municate, then had feeling return to her outer extremities.

The EMT squad arrived within 5 minutes and the ambulance was here in
about 10. She was taken to Alexandria Hospital, about a 15-min drive
(normal speed) from the hotel.

There are two things that are definitely a problem. She has a fractured
neck - the 1st and 2nd vertabrea are dislocated. She has reduced feeling
on her left side, which might be related to a TIA or to a neurological problem.
She has a possible injury in her lower lombard region.

The doctors - Jack Cochran (neurology), Boothwell G. Lee (neurosurgery)
and Thomas Smiraintopoulos (pulmonary) - seem quite competent, have all
talked to her and to me and to Peter (who drove down from PA).

Whitney & Chad were at the hospital - a godsend - to lend support to Mom
and Judy & Paul Orvos ended up at the hospital after arriving for brunch and
getting the word on where we were.

Mom is in good spirits, but she hates the neck brace. Because what is
prescribed for stroke is contraindicated for a neurological injury, the doctors
are taking a lot of tests and treading lightly. Very wise. They are also con-
cerned about her other medical situations which are unrelated to the injuries
but which could come into play. We will know more tomorrow.

I am here in VA until tomorrow - will head north after the evening rush hour.
Peter is here until Tuesday. Whitney - thank goodness - works about 10
mins from the hospital and hopes to come at lunch.

Keep us in your prayers.

By the way, none of you are surprised, I'm sure, to hear Mom's already
charming the staff!

Jim, Joe, Mark - would one of you please advise Steve Huber or whoever
(Garth is on vacation) that I will not be in on Monday? I did not bring the
emergency phone # with me. Thanks!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Hitting the road 07/28/01

Subject: Hitting the road
Date: July 28, 2001

It is just on 1:00 p.m. and the three of us are heading down to Alexandria, 
Virginia for an overnight.

It is interesting to experience getting ready for this trip compared to what
it might have been like a few years ago. We would have discussed what
time to leave, but Elsa would inevitably have wanted it to be 11:00 a.m.
or noon at the latest, which made sense since we would not want to get
to our destination too late. Unfortunately, what seemed best to her was
inevitably too early for John.

We actually left in the early evening for our most recent jaunt, out to 
Strasburg, since John had to get his display set up bright and early the
next day.

This go 'round, Elsa suggested we skip any estimated time of
departure - just leave enough time for lunch at the Classic Diner (about
an hour away), which closes at 3:00 p.m.

I like being able to leave without an estimated time of departure. Many
many years ago, when the Lockhart family headed to the lake for a week,
Pete and I would agree on an estimated time of departure; the children
would get more and more excited as the designated hour approached,
only to have their spirits flag more and more as the time came and went
with no sign of Dad, who had inevitably gone down to Weitzel Lumber
"for just an hour or two" which always stretched into far more.

Yes, I like this 'we'll leave when it is the right time" approach.
We will trickle our way down to Alexandria, with our first stop at Great 
Harvest Bread in Wayne for a chunk of their marvelous bread.  We cannot
be within striking distance of Great Harvest and miss out on that treat.

Then, we will be onto the Classic Diner (really a classic and quietly classy
roadhouse).  John & Elsa are great favorites of the staff ~ when they
stopped in for lunch last week, one of the waitresses asked, "Where is
the bear?" They will take Jessie Bear (the stuffed bear beloved by the
Classic Diner staff), while I will bring along Spring, a large white stuffed
bunny, one of my "headboard" crowd, to keep my snug at night.

From there, we will work our way down to north Wilmington, where we'll
drop John off at his beloved Mitchell's (model trains and railroading
magazines); we will head to the AC Moore on the Kirkwood Highway -
Elsa is still scouring the countryside for hexagonal papier mache
boxes (21 down, 7 to go!) for the ANC/GS Freshmen Tea.

Back to pick up John, then we will put in some serious drive time,
between Wilmington and Whitehall Town Center (outside my hometown,
Baltimore), where there is another AC Moore.
When will we arrive in Alexandria?  None of us has the vaguest idea.

We do know that we are staying at the Olde City Holiday Inn, which
Elsa and Mim and I have popped into on previous bops to Alexandria -
this is the first time we actually get to stay there.
Why are we heading down?  I am playing host tomorrow at a Sunday
brunch with my granddaughter Whitney and her husband Chad, with dear
friends Judy and Paul Orvos, and - fingers crossed - Erin and Chris
Connors. (Deena Odhner could not make it, because she is at a family
church camp in the Laurel Highlands - we will miss you, Deena.) It will
be wonderful to be with so many young people I love so much.
When we get home, it is just in time to get excited about Bob and
Kathryn Ripley's suppertime vist on Monday. Bob and Kathryn and kinder
are stopping at Squirrel Haven on their way to catch a baseball game -
they are touring East Coast ball parks. Bob, who coaches in the
Sacramento-Auburn CA area, loves baseball; he played for ANC when
he was here for his junior and senior years. We will have a laid back
supper - hoagies from Premier Pizza served on paper plates in the living
room. It is the company, not the food or fancy dinnerware, that matters.
What a lucky lady I am, to be surrounded by so many loving and much
loved family & dear friends. I must live right.

Well, Elsa has to be getting the car packed, so I must say my farewells.
Have a wonderful weekend ~ and wherever you are, take a moment to
give a loved one a call. I am smiling from ear to ear just thinking about
love and family of all sorts & persuasions.

Life is good.

Love - Hitting the Road Momma

...and give you peace. 07/27/01

(my regrets for the delayed reposting – computer was down.  elm)
Subject:  … and give thee peace
Date: July 27, 2011
This week's weather reminds me of my wedding week, 65 years ago
this month.
1936 might seem like a very long time ago to some of you ~ the
majority of you were not even a gleam in your father's eye yet ~
but to me it can seem like yesterday.

It can seem that way especially during a week like this one, which
mirrored my own wedding week.
The week Pete and I were married will sound familiar to anyone
who sweltered through this last week in Bryn Athyn - it was
uncomfortably hot and so humid.
I did not let the weather get me down, all those years ago. 
There was nothing I could do to make it better. Instead, I
focused on the reality that in a few days, I would be Pete's
wife, forever and ever.
Our wedding took place in the cathedral's chapel.  Only about
thirty people can fit into the cathedral's chapel, but it was
enough for us.

Pete asked Len Weitzel - his best friend, who'd help engineer
our first meeting on that fateful New Year's Eve - to be his
best man.
Since my sister Betty was with the Edwin Asplundh family in
California and could not get to the wedding - distances were
really distant back then - I asked my older sister, Dorothy or
Dot, to be my maid of honor. (Dot was her usual straightforward
self - "I know you only asked me to be your maid of honor
because Betty isn't here. I am glad she is not here and that I am!")
We were prepared to roast in the small chapel, the four of us on
the tiny chancel. Of course, Bishop Alfred Acton expected to be
steaming in his robes.
When the next day - my wedding day - dawned, it was much like
this morning - beautiful, with blue skies, cooler temperatures
and no humidity. It was close to what our family refers to as a
pearl of a day.
I remember getting dressed at the church and how cool the fabric
of my dress felt as I put it on. (It was a far cry from the night
that Pete's father and step-mother gave a party in our honor, when
the black slip of my dress felt like hot steel when I put it on.)
I was especially lucky because Will Cooper had just designed a
contraption (still used today) that allows a wedding dress to be
put on a hanger and hoisted up, so a bride can just stand
underneath, raise her arms and – abba~ka~da~bra! - the dress
gently drops into place with a minimum of muss and fuss.
I remember a description in a book I love that described a young
bride as practically dancing to meet her husband. That was how I
felt that day - dancey inside.
When I came out to the East Lawn to have our photos taken, there
was Len, sitting under one of those great looming trees -- with
with a highball in his hand.

Pete seemed a bit on edge. I have know of grooms - quite a few -
who take a "glass of courage" (a stiff belt of alcohol) before getting
married. Len might have taken that route, but not Pete. He steadied
himself by chain smoking cigarettes before the wedding - which is
evident in our formal shots. Just look at his left hand!
Because there were so few people - comparatively, for a Bryn Athyn
wedding - we did not have a hymn before the service began. Instead,
I had "O Precious Sign" for my wedding march. My lifelong friend,
Joyce Cooper, played the organ.
As is traditional for a Bryn Athyn wedding. Pete and I entered the
chapel together, arm in arm. As we entered - and, my, the chapel
was filled - I heard someone say, "Oh, how sweet.” I remember being
happier than I could have imagined possible.
During the prayer, I had a hard time not bubbling up with laughter.
That was in part because I was so happy and it was part because all
through the prayer, Len was tracing the outlines of the stone inlay
with his hands. I never found out if he was enthralled by the design
or the coolness of the stone, but I will remember it for always.
I remember the feel of Bishop Action's hands as he said the blessing
over us. When we were betrothed earlier that summer - also in the
small chapel and also by Bishop Acton - I wore a wide-brimmed straw
hat. After the prayer, as Pete and I remained kneeling, I was aware of
Bishop Acton hesitating for a second as he stood before us. Suddenly
it dawned on me why he was pausing and I whipped off my hat so he
could place his left hand directly on my head as he placed his right on
That is one of the most powerful moments in both ceremonies, when the
minister places his hand on the couples' heads and says the beautiful
Triple Blessing - "The Lord bless thee and keep thee; the Lord make His
face to shine upon they and be gracious unto thee; the Lord lift up His
countenance upon you and give you peace."
Through the years, it never failed to give me a thrill when Pete and I
would take holy supper, side by side, and the minister would place his
hands on our heads and say a blessing. It always took me back.

It would be nice for a husband and wife to have a "laying on of hands"
on their anniversary.
I am missing Pete now, feeling both filled with happy memories and a
strong sense of sadness missing the wonderful, exceptional man who
was my friend and lover throughout his life, right up to the very end.
Near that end, Mim and I went to visit him at in the nursing home (he'd
slipped into the coma that served as a bridge between this world and
the next). A nurse said to me, "Mrs. Lockhart, he knows you're here."
I looked over to the bed where he lay - and she was right;
there was his hand, moving over the sheet of his bed, looking for mine.
On that note, I am leaving you, with lots of lot and a few tears –
Mrs. Raymond Lewis Lockhart

Thursday, July 21, 2011

The Summer Tree 07/19/01

Subject:  The Summer Tree
Date: July 19, 2001

The first post card addressed to "The Summer Tree" Box 165
Bryn Athyn,Pa 19009 arrived today and was duly set in a place
of honor on the aforementioned tree. It is a picture of the
White House with a lovely note from Suzanne Synnestvedt.

It brought so many happy thoughts to mind, including memories
of Suzanne - a very outspoken, forthright woman - and her
family and memories of Washington.
Elsa came into my room tonight and said, "I think that the
first postcard would make for a good posting." I agreed.
Then, she looked at me and asked, "What does thinking about
Washington bring to mind?"

Well, I could feel my breath coming in shorter, tenser spurts
and sense tautness in my body.

Why do I tend to tense up when asked an open-ended question?

Elsa seemed to sense my response and asked about something
more specific ~ "What was your most memorable visit to the
White House?"
In that moment, my breathing slowed down and stretched itself
out, as my body relaxed.

I was back almost thirty years ago, to when a group of us lead
by Margit Rohtla had gone down to our nation's capital to march
during Captive Nations Week, protesting US trade with communist
countries, especially with the Soviet Union and the nations it
held captive behind the Iron Curtain.

It was a wide range of ages who were marching, from young women
to oldsters such as myself (I was over sixty). As I was walking
back and forth and back and forth in front of the White House,
one of the young ladies in our group beckoned to me to come over
to where she was sitting on a low wall.

"Mrs. Lockhart," she said, "You are over twice my age but I am
worn out and you are still soldiering on. How do you do it?"

I knew the difference and it did not have anything to do with
being a tough old bird.

"Look at our shoes," I said.

She did and broke into a big smile of understanding - there she
was, in fashionable high heels and there I was, in my sensible
orthopedic clod hoppers.
As they did with all protestors, there were several of Washington,
D.C.'s Finest on horseback to help protect us from hecklers or
other people who might wish to do us harm. I can still see one
police officer who looked down and told us, with a big smile of
his own, "We are called upon to protect many different groups.
This is the first time I can honestly consider it an honor."
So many memories from one post card.  I wish I could tell Suzanne
how much it means to me. If anyone out there has her mailing or
e-mail address, would you please send it to me.
Feeling thirty years younger as I get ready to head up
the wooden hill - Gockers