Posts Tagged ‘grandmother rachel’

Uncle George

The above picture of Uncle George as a young teen-ager is the only remaining picture in the album mailed to Dad while he was in Korea. I sure would like to have seen the picture that caused Grandmother and Papa to laugh. It seem like I remember that Grandmother always spelled the word Daddy as Dady.

Sunday morn
Aug 17. 52

My Dear Sam.
This is part of the pictures Hollis took when he was up here. As you can see some are not so good. We have had some good laughs over the one around the table. Dady thinks he is so funny and I know I am. I will send another album tomorrow. If these are too many to keep up with you can send them back and I will take care of them. If not keep them. Sure is hot weather here.



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Rachel Margaret Savage (1911-2001) and Samuel Wilkerson Young (1905-1972)

I am the keeper of Grandma’s Bookcase and this is what I found.

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Sternbergia lutea

Sternbergia lutea is the name of the bright yellow flowers in the header picture above. Their common name is “fall crocus.” The first fall crocus that I ever saw were blooming around Grandmother Rachel’s backyard oak trees.

In the early 1990s, I read about a variety of crocus-like, fall-blooming flowers in Neil Sperry’s Complete Guide to Texas Gardening, and made the connection that these fall crocus were the same as Grandmother’s yellow beauties. Sperry described sternbergia lutea as an “unusual plant that should be tried more commonly.”

Inspired to grow my own fall crocus, I inquired about the bulbs at numerous gardening stores. “Crocus only bloom in the spring,” was the usual reply to my query about the availability of fall crocus bulbs. Finally, I began to present the Neil Sperry book along with my request, and was told a couple of times that it looked like I needed to contact Neil Sperry himself.

Next, I consulted the Travis County Agricultural Agent. Although he, too, was unfamiliar with fall crocus, he recommended that I contact a Central Texas bulb authority known as the “Bulb Man.” I telephoned the “Bulb Man,” who graciously invited me to his home to search his collection of bulb catalogs. Prepared to hear that he lived hours away, I was surprised that he resided a mere five miles from my house.

A few days later, I was seated on the “Bulb Man’s” living room floor perusing a large stack of catalogs, while Andrew played nearby. An hour later, and only half-way through the stack of catalogs, Andrew had eaten all of his Cherrios, and had lost interest in his toy tractors. While entertaining Andrew, I continued to methodically scan page after page for any reference to sternbergia. It looked like I was going to have to contact Mr. Sperry afterall—only one catalog left. But on the very last page, at the bottom, right-hand corner, was the elusive sternbergia!

While I would have found the bulbs more readily if I had had Internet access back then, I might not have discovered the flowerbulb brokers at “McClure and Zimmerman.” Not only do they sell sternbergia, but they also offer another of Grandmother’s difficult-to-find-favorites: King Alfred daffodils. Call 1.800.883.6998 for your very own flowerbulb catalog and planting guide.

I have often wondered where Grandmother learned about the hardy sternbergia. In the fall of 1974, my senior year of high school, I remember admiring her fall crocus which had naturalized to two-foot golden rings around the trees. I measured the same flower rings about 20 years later, and was astonished that they had spread to a dazzling five feet!

My chest will ache at the beauty of my soon-to-be-blooming, brilliant yellow, six-petaled flowers. I can never get enough of looking at them, and that is why they have decorated my blog for almost a year.

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My Wordle Family

Wordle is a fun way to be creative with words. The following Wordle is the first one that I made, using all the names of Papa and Grandmother’s ancestors, plus the names of their four children.

Papa and Grandmother's Families

Papa and Grandmother's Families

Wordle visualizes text by creating “word clouds.” The more a certain word is used, the larger the text. The Wordle shows that the Biblical names of Mary, Elizabeth, Samuel, and John were the most popular given names in Papa and Grandmother’s families.


This one is from the bulletin at Second Baptist, Houston. I see Wordles everywhere. Hannah covered one of her text books in a Wordle that she made. If you want to make your own, go to www.wordle.net

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Fresh and Fruity

Your mission, should you choose to accept, is to make Cantaloupe Ice Cream.

Looks like it’s time to get serious about making Cantaloupe Ice Cream while the melons are still in the produce section. Choose one of these recipes at Serving-Ice-Cream.com or RecipeKey.com, and have a taste-testing party.

Grandmother also made ice cream and sherbet in her refrigerator freezer. Here’s one of her recipes that I remember helping her make in metal ice cube trays. (It uses buttermilk instead of cream, but it doesn’t taste like buttermilk.)


2 cups buttermilk
1 cup sugar
1 9-ounce can crushed pineapple
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 tablespoon unflavored gelatine
2 tablespoons water
1 stiff-beaten egg white


Combine buttermilk, sugar, pineapple, and vanilla extract; add gelatine, softened in cold water and dissolved over hot water. Fold in egg white. Freeze firm in automatic refrigerator about 3 to 4 hours. Stir once during freezing. Serves 4 to 6.

I’m off to the grocery store to buy a cantaloupe. Let me know how your batch turns out. 🙂

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The cobalt vase was a gift from Grandmother Rachel.

The cobalt vase was a gift from Grandmother Rachel.

Hannah placed this cobalt vase with a sunflower near my desk today. It was a happiness all day long.

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I ran across this picture of two of my favorite people when I was looking for pictures of Mark’s ships yesterday. It’s hard to believe that Andrew was ever that small.

Grandmother Rachel and Andrew

Grandmother Rachel and Andrew

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