Notes, the 1920’s

The Morning started with Teacher saying “Good Morning Class.” Then class “Good Morning Teacher,” then a short Bible reading, then salute the flag, then sing “America the Beautiful.”

Then – Reading, Writing, Arithmetic, History, Geography.  We had to learn the name of each state, their capital, their main product, important river, mountain.  A special teacher was had for music and writing we had to practice (it is hard to remember).

Growing up, What Fun We Had

Before the last two were born there six of us all about 1-and-1/2 years apart.  The oldest was my brother Wilmarth and he would take us walking up one side of the mountain.  We never got lost and came back the other side.  We would be gone for hours.

May Day basketOn May Day we would go in the woods and pick wildflowers and make baksets out of wallpaper and hang them on neighbour’s door knobs.

On weekends so many relatives and cousins would come.  We would play in the brook and go across the road in the pasture and throw cow plops at each other.

I remember on weekends after we and all the cousins were supposed to be in bed, the aunts and uncles would play the Victrola and roll up the parlor rug and dance.

Victrola cropped

Then Pop would always take us in the woods to pick wild blueberries, blackberries for Mum to can.  We had plenty for the winter.

Things weren’t easy in those days.  Mom had two galvanized tubs and a scrubbing board and oodles of clothes to wash, hand them outside on a line in winter and summer and heat all the water in an old black iron cook wood stove, then iron all the clothes by heating flat-irons on the wood cook stove.  

We had our usual bath and head washed every Saturday night.  Floyd and I we were put together in the galvanized wash tub near the kitchen stove.  Then Pop remodeled the house he built on rooms – had a bathtub, sink, and toilet.  No more going to the outhouse out back and no more potties under the bed to use during the night – and better still not having to go down the stairs and empty it in the outhouse on cold mornings.

I loved going to school and by the third grade, I decided I would be a school teacher no higher than 2nd grade.

Notes, Embarrassing Moments

I’m reciting this poem that I learned in 4th grade and noise starts coming from the wrong end.  Everyone is laughing, I start saying it louder.

Oh moon in the night
I see you shining
Shining so bright and low
But your light is fading
You are nothing now but a bow
Have you done something
Wrong up in Heaven
That God has hidden your face
I hope if you have
You will soon be forgiven
And shine again in your place.

Granma, Embarrassing moment

Page 78-80 Believe in prayer

Summer 2008

This wasn’t funny then but now as I think about it, it is funny.  I was falling a lot that year.  This day I was going to empty the bathroom canister, I usually stand up and bend over but this day I said I’ll play it safe, I’ll sit in the toilet seat and when I reached for the canister, I slid off the seat, hit the side of the tub.

It sent a terrible pain in my shoulder-blade and I let out a loud cry.  June called 911.  What a sight I must have been wedged between the toilet and tub, shower curtain all around me and the shower bar landed on my head.

The ambulance took me to emergency because I had a terrible pain from my left shoulder all the way down my arm to my wrist.  So I prayed that God would stop the pain.

The following week I fell again in the kitchen flat on my back, the pain went away immediately. It never came back.

Ronnie Isaacson, 4 years old
Daughter Ronaele Issacson, healed of epilepsy

God is a prayer answering God.

I’ve always believed in prayer ever since Ronaele as a young girl was having petite mal epilepsy attacks every five minutes. 

The Church said let’s pray around the clock for Ronnie.  Someone made a huge clock out of poster board and people signed the hour and minutes they would pray until the clock was filled with someone praying.

In a matter of three weeks I noticed she wasn’t having spells quite as often.  In a couple of months she didn’t have any more.  How can one not believe in prayer?

Granma -page 79,80

A note from the Blogger:

This is the last page of the Nothing Book.  Ronnie, my mother-in-law, is the little girl healed of epilepsy.  In 1974 Ronnie and her children followed her former husband Doug to New Zealand.  She now lives between Te Puke and Rotorua on a deer farm. 

Ronaele (Ronnie) is named after her mother Eleanor, her name is Eleanor spelled backwards.  They’re both wonderful women.

Ronnie gave me “The Nothing Book” to publish because I have published my own book “The Kingdom, Here Be Bragons, Here Be Dreams” which Eleanor appears in.  It shows what happens when you believe in prayer.  You can get the book here.

I am Joanne, Eleanor’s NZ granddaughter by marriage.  I got to know Ronnie’s son Bert in 2002, we married in 2004 and I met Eleanor in 2008.

Eleanor passed away on the 21st July 2017.  Our American famly were going to break the news to us on the morning of Monday the 24th.  But when they rang, we already knew.  I found out on Sunday July 23rd after finishing Page 23 in her book, about her first marriage and rejection as a young bride.

I couldn’t get her off my mind that day, after reading that.  Then I was led to her funeral notice, which had just gone up on the Tampa Bay Times when we read it.  It’s like Grandma and the Lord wanted us to know she’d gone to be with Him.

I’m so glad we made it to the US to meet her in 2008.  Eleanor hadn’t seen her grandson since 1974.  New Zealand is literally at the ends of the earth, and it’s very expensive for us to travel anywhere.  Although we had enough for the airfares, we did not have enough for anything else.  After praying, we were given an accomodation package, which enabled us to go.

Eleanor’s Nothing Book ends with the question, how can one not believe in prayer?  It’s a question I also ask.

Thanks for reading “The Nothing Book” and I hope you enjoyed it.  If you want to see some video’s of Eleanor reading from her Nothing Book, click here, Videos.


Page 77 A fright one night

Cartoon Scared Grandma Running Vector IllustrationMay 28, 2005

This happened about four years ago, but thought of it now, as I do so little these days I have nothing to write about.

The night someone was breaking into our apartment.   I was ever so scared, all that I could think of was a home invasion that we were hearing on the news so much about. 

All of a sudden we heard a noise at the door, June said “someone is trying to unlock the door,” then the noise got louder and louder.  June called the police, I yelled “June they are breaking in” as I headed to the bedroom to jump put the window.

gg56822818The police told June to stay on the phone and they would be right there.  Two police came – all they saw was two board members washing down the walls.  The board members were surprised because these two policmen walked up with their hands on their holsters.

It all ended OK the board members weren’t arrested, we weren’t robbed or killed, the police went away smiling.  11PM night night.

Ronaele I just wrote a five pageletter to you but didn’t like what I wrote so put it in the shredder.  Will send the next one before I shred it.

Granma -page 77,78

Page 75 The TV remote and the fall in the tub

I don’t have too many funny things happen anymore.  Maybe this is as I can laugh about it now. 

I’m listening to the TV and wanted the sound louder.  I told June I guess I’ll just call the TV man.  I keep pushing the loud button and it gets softer every time, it’s just working backwards – that is so odd, how could it do that?  Easy if you hold the remote upside down!


May 7 2005 – The day I fell in the tub.  Praise God I didn’t even get hurt – just a few black and blue spots.  I was bracing myself by the bathroom sink putting out on my panties, lost my blalance and landed at the foor of the tub.  I think the shower curtain helped.  I felt my head bang on the wall.  My bottom hit the bottom of the tub.  My left shoulder landed on the side of the tub – but was in an odd position and had to do some skidding on my bottom to get a hold of the bar.

Granma -page 75,76

Page 74, Forgetfulness

My, here it is 2005 and my last writing was 1999 – I haven’t done much of anything this many years – just nothing funny to write about, but doing better now.

Jan 1 2005  What a way to start the New Year!  Got up at 5:30 am.  Could hardly wait for hot coffee / chocolate covered doughnut.  Got everything all set on the porch to enjoy it.

What a disappointment when I poured it in the cup, it was just water, I had forgot the coffee.  Forget! Forget! Forget!  Every day I remember only one thing at a time.

I go in the bedroom for two things to save time and I can remember only one.

Oh well God has been and is very good to me.


Page 73, 1998 – 1999 Healing from Melanoma

1998 – The year went by so quickly I didn’t write a thing.

1999 Here it is April 1999 and I haven’t written a thing.  I must thank the Lord and praise Him and I do for answered prayer and His power to heal, but you have to really have the faith and belief.

In 1998 the Doctor said the biopsy showed that my Melanoma had come back.  I called many friends to pray for heaing and I was put on the prayer list of several churches.  In April 1999 the biopsy was negative. I do not have to see the Surgeon for six months.

Praise His Name. Psalm 98:1 Sing unto the Lord a new song for He has done great things.

Psalm 98-1, Etsy-com

Granma, page 73

Page 69, Reminiscing

August 1997, it is now 6am.  I am sitting on the porch awaiting for daylight so I can start my walk on the beach.

The home where I was born, Cheshire Massachusetts
The home where I was born, West mountain Road, Cheshire Massachusetts

I was just reminiscing about when I was a little girl we lived in this big house in Cheshire Massachusetts.

We all slept upstairs, no heat in our bedroom, so if it was zero degrees outside it was about zero inside, but I remember we had big soft ticks over our mattresses.  We would sink down it in and have a feather tick over us with many quilts on top.  When we got up we would scurry downstairs and dress by the pot belly stove, that’s how I backed my little bare bottom to it and blistered it real good.  I had to sit on feather pillows for weeks.

Related page: Page 18, Saturday night bath time

Sure didn’t write much in 1997.

Grandma, page 69-70

Page 68, Bobby

June 1997

Just sitting here on my porch at 8:30AM and thinking and the thought came to me about you Bobby, the day your father and I took you to Gainesville to enter college. 

I was never one to show my feelings but I felt so bad leaving you there that I was so relieved when you came back. My little boy leaving home, how sad.

Feb 1997 – 28th

porch press

I got up at six AM, showered dressed and went for a walk down the beach.  The sun was just coming up, the weather was so nice.  I noticed my paper wasn’t by my door as it usually is at that hour so thought he hadn’t come, but the other people had paper by their door.

About an hour later I noticed the paper by my chair on the porch. I have absolutely no recollections of bringing in the paper. Then the thought came to me that the door wasn’t locked when I went for a walk, but passed that off that we forgot to lock it before going to bed.

I must have got the paper in my sleep.  I know I’m forgetful but not that forgetful.  Is this the beginning of Alzheimers?

Grandma, page 68