CAROLYN'S COMPOSITIONS

January 10, 2015

Warmth on a Wintry Day

CAROLYN’S COMPOSITONS

WARMTH ON A WINTRY DAY 150107 IMG_6001E

The December 26, 2014, WP photo challenge seems more applicable today, January 11, than it did on the 26th, when the sun shone brightly against blue skies and jackets were barely needed to go outside. The good weather  continued on the 27th, affecting snow tubing that just barely was not cancelled due to the efforts of snowmaking machines. The wonderfully unseasonable December finally caved in to the bitter cold and snow beginning January 6, 2015. Thus, I take on the WordPress photo challenge today as the temperature outside is a bone-chilling 20 degrees, albeit the sun is shining brightly and the whipping winds have calmed down.

Yes, I’m toasty warm, taking photographs inside and responding to the December 26th WP photo challenge: Warmth: This week, let’s keep things nice and cozy150110 IMG_6058E1

150110 IMG_6041E

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January 8, 2015

Old Man Winter Sleeps in Until 1/7/2015

CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS

NOTE: Considering the trials and delays in beginning my new blog site (read Problems Creating a New WordPress Blog ) I decided to continue posting on this site until the issues are resolved. Thank you all for bearing with me.

OLD MAN WINTER SLEEPS IN

He Doesn’t Arrive Until January 7, 2015150106 IMG_5985E1 On January 7, 2015, Old Man Winter

is startled awake

as his alarm clock bbbrrriiiinnngggsss.  

“Dang,” he says surprizedly. “I slept in.”*

Not only is the weather bitter cold, It is the first big snowfall. Motorists sometimes just don’t know how to handle the first several snowfalls until they get used to driving in snow again, according to PennDOT spokeswoman Juliann Sheldon.***

As I pushed our cats out the door I admired the artwork on the frosted windows and noticed the temperature on our little protected step-in porch: 180 Fahrenheit. Brrr. I shivered as I reminded myself the cats are wore the cutest fur coats—King’s a beautiful shade of gray, Little Dog’s white with calico markings.

150106 IMG_5986E1I poured myself a hot cup of coffee and sat down to review my January 7th file folder, which contained journals of January 7ths past. The tree lights were lit for their final morning display, soft music was playing on the radio, as I reviewed the papers in the folder.

150108 IMG_6010E1On January 2, 1998,I’d flown to Bangor, Maine, where my mother was in the hospital. Unfortunately, she didn’t survive, so I’d traveled with siblings to her hometown, Presque Isle, where I spent the past few days.

Maine winters aren’t known for being gentle. Caribou, Maine, a short distance from Presque Isle, has been reported on no few occasions to be the coldest spot in the nation.

No, Maine winters aren’t gentle, and 1998 was no exception.

I take that statement back. It was an exception. I flew into Maine during a massive ice storm that covered the northeast from Pennsylvania north. Although the storm had passed the ice remained, creating cold and hazardous conditions.

Landing in Boston en route to Maine---tien ice storm had arrived

Landing in Boston en route to Maine—tien ice storm had arrived

On January 6, after spending several days in Presque Isle, I drove south to Bangor in the backseat of my niece’s sports car, which I could barely squeeze my body into. Down the icy highway we went, and I stayed in a room at the hospital’s inn.

On January 7 I took a cab to the airport. There was ice everywhere. Old man winter was still wreaking havoc. My flight was delayed and delayed until it was cancelled and the airline put the passengers up in a hotel for the night. The next day I was able to fly to Boston, then to Buffalo, New York, where my husband met me and we visited with family.1998-0103-14E1

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December 27, 2014

Warmth on New England Beaches

CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS

WARMTH ON NEW ENGLAND BEACHES

As the holidays end, and the cold of winter sets in, dreams of the warmth of summers past on the beaches of the New England coast begin floating, like kites in the wind, through my head.

The WordPress photo prompt for December 26 is warm: show us your take on warmth. And so, I go to New England pictures of past summers on the beach.

Someone came along to snap this photo of me at Wallis Sands Beach in Rye, New Hampshire

Someone came along to snap this photo of me at Wallis Sands Beach in Rye, New Hampshire

It can't be that cold...jackets????

It can’t be that cold…jackets????

Nantasket Beach, Massachusetts

Nantasket Beach, Massachusetts

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December 25, 2014

CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS

THE MYSTERIOUS CHRISTMAS GIFT

The Mysterious Christmas Gift

As I drank my morning coffee my eyes glanced over to the bookcase across the room, to a post office envelope sitting on the shelf, partially hidden by an a red poinsetta and an 8 x 10 picture of myself as a child in my mother’s arms, before my father beat and choked my her, almost killing her. That the picture frame had a cracked glass was appropriate, symbolic of the broken family that resulted from my father’s final attack on my mother, who was aided by a woman’s shelter in reframing a life without violence.

The envelope was addressed to the United Way of Westmoreland County in Southwestern Pennsylvania. Janelle, a friend of my neighbor, was taking the envelope and mailing it in a community unknown to me. The intent was to (continue reading at The Mysterious Christmas Gift —which is being reposted because I neglected to title the post—I apologize for the inconvenience).

December 21, 2014

Seasonal Enthusiasm…Or Not

CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS

SEASONAL ENTHUSIASM…OR NOT

 Traditions are difficult to maintain in a nomadic lifestyle combined with normal life changes. I could never quite keep up with the triple holidays—Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Eve—while settling and resettling in new communities. Now, however, we’ve been settled for a while…or at least, until we must move again.

My husband Monte and I have begun what I think is a new tradition tied in with my December birthday.

Last year Monte wanted to take me to a Christmas buffet at a restaurant at our local airport.

“Only if we can go dressed as Santa and Mrs. Claus,” I said.

We had a great time.

We followed up that experience with being the Claus couple while ringing the bell for the Salvation Army. This, it seems, encourages more giving and gains lots of smiles.

This year we repeated the performance. Afterward our lunch we went shopping. Each place we ended up with photographs, which will complete this post on getting seasonal.

DeNunzio Restaurant at Arnold Palmer Regional Airport, Latrobe PA

DeNunzio Restaurant at Arnold Palmer Regional Airport, Latrobe PA

Is his beard really real?

Is his beard really real?

At Office Max...

At Office Max…

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December 20, 2014

December Yellow

CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS

YELLOW IN DECEMBER

On the Diamond in Ligonier, PA

On the Diamond in Ligonier, PA

‘Tis the season…SAD (seasonal affect disorder) initiated by dark, drab days and depression brought on by unfulfilled holiday expectations, stress, and bad memories.

The WordPress photo challenge for December 19, 2014, is yellow: Away with the colors of Hanukkah, Christmas, and Kwanzaa. Show us what “yellow” means to you.

Yellow. The color of sunshine, what many people not joyous in the season crave. Sunshine—its cheerfulness, warmth, happiness and energy. It evokes pleasant feelings.

I leafed through my recent photographs and discovered yellow in clothing, nature, art, and signs.

Start with a yellow hat...

Start with a yellow hat…

Add a yellow shirt...

Add a yellow shirt…

End with yellow pants.

End with yellow pants.

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December 11, 2014

Cornell Family Dialogue Via Blog Post Comments

CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS

CORNELL FAMILY DIALOGUE

VIA BLOG POST COMMENTS

KILLED STRANGELY: A NEW ENGLAND MURDER STORY was the most commented on post on CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS, an online magazine-style blog. It’s connected numerous persons delving into the Cornell family (Twitter hashtags #Cornellgenealogy, #Cornellfamily).

  • Hi Carolyn, I am the great, great, great grandson of William and Margaret O’Neal Cornell of Bedford PA.  I’m trying to figure out if I belong to the New England family line or the French Huguenot family line or a lesser known family….Maybe you could help!  Patrick, received on CAROLYN’S BIO July 23, 2013

I decided to post a list of these comments separately from the list of a review of other CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS comments because the information is valuable for Cornell family researchers.

NOTE: This article is being rewritten. Upon review I discovered I made multiple writing errors which I will correct after January 1, 2015, on the CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS follow-up blog, CAROLYN’S ONLINE MAGAZINE. To reread the edited copy type CAROLYN’S ONLINE MAGAZINE after January 15, 2015.

Below are the Cornell family comments on CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS:

  • this story fascinates me! I found it a couple of years ago when I came across clues that suggest we’re also Cornell descendants here in Oklahoma! I had to buy the book. I’m reading it again because I want to share the story with my family on my blog, American Saga. I will track back to you when I get it written. Jan
  • Thomas Cornell was my eighth great grandfather. I’m going to Rhode Island in three weeks to visit these spots you mention and others. Were you able to find the graveyard where he is buried? Cameron Cornell  — January 3, 2009
  • I recently spoke to the author, Dr. Crane, who assured me she had found the family burial plot deep in the overgrown woods. It is not located on the government property. I visited this spot in Rhode Island a month or so ago, and walked back in the woods, but did not go deep enough to locate the plot. I’ll try again in the spring. John W. Cornwell  — January 22, 2009

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December 6, 2014

Gone Off My Christmas Card List—But Not Forgotten

CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS

“GONE” OFF MY CHRISTMAS CARD LIST“BUT NOT FORGOTTEN”

Note: This article is a cheat, as it combines two 2014 WordPress challenges:

listing, and gone but not forgotten.

‘Tis the season for suspense-building lists, the December 2 daily challenge began. Everybody loves (or at least loves to hate) a list…I invite you to breathe new life into the established genre of the end-of-year countdown list.

Then on December 5, before I tackled the above challenge, the WordPress weekly photo challenge asked writers to show us what “gone, but not forgotten” means to you.

Hmmm, I thought. I’m just about to tackle my Christmas card list. Over the years many persons have been “gone” off this list—persons who have died, but are not forgotten. I decided to make a list of these persons, with some photographs, and to write one sentence about them. The first ones will include photographs: gone but not forgotten.

 ~~~~~~~~~~~~

Albert and May Isabelle Briskay, my grandparents, who cared for my older sister and I until we were about 7 and 9 years old; I recall his sitting in a chair smoking cigars and her making me stand on a stool while she pinned the hem of a dress she was making me.

BRISKAY, MAE ISABELLE WALKER

Albert Adam Briskay (Borinsky)

Albert Adam Briskay (Borinsky)

Nancy Lipsius, my mother, died too early, since she was just beginning to share her life stories with me—it had been a slow journey getting her to talk about her life.

My mother, Nancy Briskay Cornell Lipsius

My mother, Nancy Briskay Cornell Lipsius

Robert Cornell, Chief Photographer in the Navy, my father—whom I only met twice and not until I passed age 30—is remembered for his tremendous photography.

Chief Navy Photographer Robert William Cornell

Chief Navy Photographer Robert William Cornell

Photo by Chief Navy Photographer Robert W. Cornell

Photo by Chief Navy Photographer Robert W. Cornell

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December 4, 2014

A Review of Comments On CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS

CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS

A REVIEW OF SIX YEARS OF

COMMENTS ON CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS

Because CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS is coming to an end (later December posts will update you on the magazine’s evolution to CAROLYN’S ONLINE MAGAZINE : COMe) I decided to review and list some of the comments received over its 6 year life.

Comments indicate connection with readers. They add meaning to my writing—I’m reaching someone, entertaining them, introducing them to new topics and ideas, perhaps providing insight. Often they add corrective comments. More often they are uplifting.

The many wonderful comments received by CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS  during its lifespan encourage me to move on to creating a follow up blog—information on CAROLYN’S ONLINE MAGAZINE will be provided, hopefully, on January 1, 2015, and posted on this blog so you won’t lose any of my delightful writing. (OK, so there has to be some humor!)

Below is a list of only a few of the comments made on CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS.

An (Internationally) Adopted Adult Tells His Story Carolyn, thank you for sharing Mark’s story. I admire Sam and Annette for giving loving homes to these special children.  Merri

My Sister and I: Cluttered Versus Neat Home I’ve read that clutter is conducive to creativity. So look at it this way: You’re not neglecting your housecleaning, you’re fostering your creativity!  Danny

CAROLYN’S BIO My husband sent me the link to this bio on you, from the Upper Room’s devotional, first thing this morning. His words, “She looks like someone you would like.” I have always had writing aspirations, but even though I write a commentary daily on the day’s devotion, I have little time (more…)

November 29, 2014

WordPress Photo Challenge 11/28/2014: Things That Converge

CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS

PHOTOS OF THINGS THAT CONVERGE

 Photos are visual spaces where shapes and lines, objects, and people come together. The November 28, 2014, WordPress photo challenge asked us to explore the ways lines and shapes can converge in interesting ways through photography.

My first photo, taken in Pottsville, Pennsylvania, aptly speaks to art—which here is converged with an unlikely object, a parking meter:

141027 IMG_2998E

My second photos converge in more than one way. They represent a convergence of two towns, which were for a time sister cities—Ligonier, Pennsylvania and Ligonier, Indiana. A second convergence is of art and structures.

110301 DSC03178E

110301 DSC03209E

The third convergence is of the lights and walls in the Squirrel Hill Tunnel in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Photo taken from our moving car.

141129 IMG_0153E

My next photo was taken at Hampton Beach, New Hampshire. It shows water converging with the sand

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