Happy Birthday Ellen


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I knew Ellen’s birthday was coming up, but I have been so focused on myself that I let her birthday slip by.  I planned to do couple of things and then suddenly the time has slipped away to be on her birthday.  It will be a little late this year, but it is coming.  I have the coolest sisters and so appreciate them, they have been a great support as I have been taking care of Mom and her needs.  I wish they had been able to be here to see Mom when she had periods of recognizing her daughters.  Sometimes she knows me, sometimes I am a familiar presence.  Ellen sent more maple sugar candy for Mother’s Day, Mom really enjoys them.

Ellen has a gift for choosing just the right gift for giving, I wonder how she does it.  I remember one Christmas, she gave us a pair of the coolest scissors – I have used them for quilting, sewing and all kinds of things.  They cut so smoothly and easily, they are my favorite pair.  It was unexpected and turned out to be a wonderful choice.

Ellen is my older sister, the one I played stick horses with when we lived in Southern California.  She is 4 years older than I am but that didn’t seem to be a big gap when I was up to age 7.  First it was just a square stick with rope tied at the end for reins, then later Dad made heads for the sticks.  I called mine Scout – probably after Tonto’s Scout.  I can’t remember what Ellen named hers.  We loved them and had a wonderful time playing with them.  When we were moving up to Seattle, for some reason Dad wouldn’t let us take them.  We never quite figured out why – they weren’t all that big.  We both were upset and decided to put them behind the garage when we left.  I wonder if anyone ever found them.

She did have friends on our block more her age, but I also remember we spent a lot time together.  I am sure she remembers Betsy, hot dogs and cheese.  I remember my Dad bought Betsy – don’t ask me what year or model car she was – and he took us out for a drive.  We all sat in the front seat and we realized there were a couple of floorboards missing.  I think we went through a puddle and got splashed, but I am not sure.

I have a vague memory of a show we put on with the some of the neighborhood kids, but that’s about all.  Maybe she remembers better than I do.  There was a game called “Kick the Can” the kids played.  There was a coffee can filled with water flowers and who knows what other debris;  we went around in a circle with our eyes closed and whoever kicked the can over had to do something.  Usually it was run up to someone’s door, ring the bell and run away.  I remember only playing a couple of times.

When moved up here to Seattle, suddenly Ellen seemed so much older.  We went to Madrona grade school about 2 months before the year ended – I was in 2nd grade and she was in 5th grade.   I had gone to school a year early, so I was 3 grades behind her rather than 4..  We went to Madrona another year and then moved to this house.  Ellen started junior high (7th grade) and I went into 4th grade – 2 different schools and the age difference really seemed wide.

Ellen has always been a wonderful artist and I watched her do her homework for the Famous Artist Course.  It was a 3 year home study course, I admired her talent and ability.  She is an amazing artist and has been taking photos in Ocean Grove, New Jersey, for several years.  She has also done some paintings from those photos.

She was married and then I left for Australia to be married, so we didn’t see each other for a long time.  I would come and visit here, either by myself or with Eddie and she would come to see us.  It’s funny (peculiar) how the gap seems to widen between us until the last few years.  There is something about getting older that narrows the gap so I feel there isn’t such a gap.  All three sisters have had very different lives, but now my sisters seem so much closer even though we live far away from each other.

I did vist Ellen in Ocean Grove about 9 or 10 years ago – I went to visit my head office for my promotional marketing business and since they are in New Jersey, I just took the Garden State Parkway down to Ocean Grove to spend a few days with Ellen.  I’m so glad I did; I would like to do it again and also visit Candy in Nashville.

Happy Belated

Birthday Ellen!

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