Friday, September 26, 2014


On his way to his morning culinary class, which he seems to be enjoying thus far.

Thursday, September 25, 2014


Dec 17th 1913

Dear Cousin:

I received your letter and was very pleased to hear from you. You will be Uncle Bobs daughter I never heard very much about you but we used to correspond with your Brother Roberts family they were nice you might give them my kind regards. You have had your own brothers too losing your Husband so soon but we must submit to Gods will. I am sorry to have to tell you your Aunt Christina my Mother died on the 1st of August of this year she was 83 years of age but she was prepared to go she said she was just going Home Father died 11 years ago. my Sister Mary Mrs McGregor has two sons and one daughter living then John comes next he has four sons and four daughters he has four of them Married and another one named Bob gets married this month

James comes next he died in London on May 22d 1912 he was twice married and left one littler girl of 6 years the older ones are all able for themselves then Bob and I come next neither of us are married we looked after Mother and we do miss her dreadfully then Lizzie Mrs MacMillan she is the youngest she has not any family she lives in Neilston a small village about 2 miles from Barrhead that is the lot of our family. I got the other letters also Aunt Kate died 10 years ago her Husband and Son are dead too then Aunt Mary Sellers lives in Paisley she is 76 years and getting very frail but she was able to come to Mother's Funeral I will give her your letter and she can write herself the Aunt Jeanie died 5 or 6 years ago she was the youngest of your Fathers family Mother has 16 Grand Children living and 13 Great Grand Children now I think this is plenty for the first time I will close now write soon again

Your Affectionate Cousin
Deena Douglas

PS. do you know anything of Aunt Lizzie of St. Louis if she is dead Aunt Mary will be the last of the Generation

Miss D Douglas
13 Paisley Road

[Most likely written too Cecelia Longmore of New Jersey]

Friday, September 19, 2014


We were discussing our favorite actresses yesterday, and although I love many, my favorite will have to be Sonia Braga. This is she in her mid-thirties. So beautiful.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014


Here are the seven other movie lobby cards I scored at the auction. I like them all, but especially the Bob Hope, Jane Russell, and Mauldin; plus the Hunchback.


Been going to auctions for years, and usually do not buy much, let alone making a big score, but last night I might have. I bought a group of movie lobby cards from the 1950s, most relatively common, but I got them for a ridiculously low price. Then I found this one in the bunch, and from all I can see online, this one has value. Especially because of the picture (center top) of the then-fairly-unknown Marilyn Monroe in one of her early pictures (as Angela Phinlay).

Sunday, September 14, 2014


Here he comes afresh
red arrow across his chest,
I'm so proud of him.

{Joey was elected into the Order of the Arrow, and completed his ordeal this weekend.}

Friday, September 12, 2014

KEEP ON (haiku)

What I wish to hear
is “I read it, and liked it”
and “keep on writing.”

Wednesday, September 10, 2014


Been a few years now since he left us, my troubled long-time friend, but with the passing of Robin Williams, it reminded me a bit of my old senior patrol leader and crazy person. He was a fixture at our Keystone home, and was friends with my sister Beth (who also cared for his mother in her old age). They lived a few houses apart. Here are a couple of shots of Billy Barfield, when he accompanied my sister and my two boys about seven years back to a spring down in Florida.

Sunday, September 7, 2014


We heard her before we ever saw her, the grind of small lizard bones ground by a hungry wild cat, who soon emerged from the shrubbery and into our home on Sylvan. She was a sweet calico, friendly, calm. She eventually went to live with my exgf when we split (and would be, if still living, about 16 to 20), and I don't know what became of her. But when she became ours, she could only have one name: Crunch.

Here is a small pic of her eating in Chris's garden on Sylvan.


Already out of date, with Joey wearing new glasses and several more inches, but I like it.


One of my favorite photographs of Chimo and Joey, from when they were about 6 & 8.


Joey spent the summer working with my sister Beth and her husband Brad. Here is a picture they took when they weren't working.


Soon my bro will be heading to his latest overseas posting, back to Cuba. Might be the last of his overseas assignments.

Friday, September 5, 2014


Back when Joey was fascinated with dinosaurs, even to the point of mimicking one during half of a soccer game, I found him the perfect outfit, and he loved it. Here are the boys enjoying some of their booty.


Herewith my two boys as they appeared in 2006. Joey is around 7 and Chimo around 5.


Here is a picture of my aunt and godmother, Marijka Chmilewska (Ulanowicz), as a teenager, probably late 1950s and in Baltimore. What is sadly missing in this picture is just how beautiful and colorful the embroidery is on her shirt, the pillow behind, and the items on the table. Marijka looks like she really didn't want the picture taken.


Some family photos. I may have posted these before, but what the heck.

My grandfather, Jaroslav Chmilewsky, with his wife and daughters. My mother, Lydia, is on the right next to her father, and my aunt, Marijka, is on the left. Picture probably taken in Baltimore around 1950.

Undated photo, likely mid 1950s. My mom is in right hand corner; my aunt in shift in front between her mom and a little girl who I don't know. I also do not remember the woman or boy standing in front of the Christmas tree. It might be Andrei Chornodolsky, but my family will have to write me about it.

The next two pictures are part of my family that I really didn't get to know, my mother's cousin George (I think) and his wife Oxana.


Going out on a limb with this interpretation. These shots were taken in 1946, which leads me to believe that they are probably in a Displaced Persons camp, most likely in Germany, just after the end of World War II. I am fairly confident that it shows a group of Ukrainian Scouts, my mother most likely participating,as they march to and then participate in a memorial service. There is some Ukrainian writing on the back of one of the photos and if I get more infor, I will add it later.

Thursday, September 4, 2014


There were lots of social events, especially as you advanced in the years, at the Naval Academy. Here we have my Mom and Dad at some function (most probably the Ring Dance, because if you could see closely, each woman seems to be wearing a tiny class ring around her neck), though there is no marking or information on the photograph to identify when, where, and who was in the scene. Clearly we have midshipmen with their dates, I would guess about 1958, maybe 1959. Dad is sitting on the far left, next to Mom is the white floral dress.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014


Sometime in the late 1960s, early 1970s, my parents met Ray Phillips, who (according to my sister) may have lived down the road from us, but I don't recall. I do know that he was from Lewistown, Illinois at some point, perhaps even retiring down in Florida, but I just don't know. But, he was a painter, mostly folk style, on bells, cans, pottery, and really lovely Christmas cards. He sent several to my family. They usually consisted of two paintings, one cut out to overlap and reveal another scene beneath. One of these cards, the first I will post, shows our home on Keystone Lake in Odessa, Florida, the place where I grew up from 1970 to 1979. For us it was the homestead, the place the Tidds resided the longest (1970 to 2004).

Here are some other cards, not sure the locations depicted in most of them:

This one I do know, it is a painting of Bernadotte Bridge, a metal highway bridge in Fulton County, Illinois; I have seen a full painting of it by the same artist.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014


Scouting has always been a part of my family, boys and girls. My grandfather, father, brother and I are all Eagles, and my mother and sisters are First Classes (the equivalent in Girl Scouts). My Mom was an excellent camper and volunteer for years at GSA and BSA summer camps. My Dad was even a professional scouter and Appalachian Trail hiker. Here are some pictures from when my Dad was in scouting, Troop 24 in Trenton, New Jersey. Grandad, Frank L. Tidd, was Scoutmaster. Most of these pictures were taken by the local newspsper I think, and a couple I have seen in print, actually.

The following shot is of my Dad in 1950, a newly minted Eagle Scout, helping out on a lashing project. He was a stickler for correct lashing, I can tell you!

I don't know if Uncle John was a member of the troop, though I am sure he probably was, but second from the right of this picture is the only shot I have of Dad and John's younger adopted brother as a young man, probably around twelve years, Alex Rybalkin.

Dad and Granddad earned the Eagles at the same time, back when an adult was allowed to do so. Here we have the guys pinning the replica pins on their respective mothers, on the left Florence Tidd, and next to Dad, Lillian Tidd.

Here is a group photo of Troop 24, with Grandad on the right. Dad is in the rear kneeling row, fourth from the left. [Although I am not sure, I think Johnny might be the five boys down from Dad to the left in the same row.]

Granddad on stage presenting something or another.

Some of these shots appeared in the Trenton Sunday Times-Advertiser.