Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Inspire Me Monday--And For A Good Reason

Happy Memorial Day everyone.  I just want to share with you what Memorial Day means to me.  Being a veteran myself, I feel a special connection to the veterans buried at our national cemeteries.  Here in Little Rock, Arkansas, we have two large national veteran cemeteries here.  I visit one of them regularly because I live about 2 miles from that one.  I also have some family buried there.  Anyway, just take a moment to pray for our soldiers serving currently, those who have served, and those who have passed on either while serving or after serving their time.  Also remember those who work at the cemeteries that keep them looking nice and the ones who spend their time on special days placing the flags on each and every grave in the morning and take the flags off of each and every grave in the evening.

There is a sense of pride that comes over oneself when entering a veteran cemetery on a special holiday.  Seeing the flags lining the drive ways and standing proud on each and every grave is something one cannot put into words.  For a veteran who enters one of these sacred places to remember their fellow soldiers, words cannot describe the honor they feel for the people already buried there.  It is such a serene place to walk around and reflect on the liberties that we have because of the people who are already there.  Walking down by the small pond at the cemetery we have here, you will see all the flags positioned at half-staff at all times remembering the heroes who are gathered inside the gates of the cemetery.  Many of them served not by choice, but out of necessity for the protection of our liberties and simple freedoms we enjoy today.  So, if you ever get the chance to visit one of these great cemeteries, please do.  Say thank you to some of the fallen heroes that are already "home".  I am going to leave you with these beautiful pictures I took of the cemetery today.  I have a lot of them and take some every time I make a visit to the cemetery.   I would also like to list the family members of mine who have served in the military over the years.
Alfred Kelly Inmon.  This is my father.  He is still living.  He served in the US Army during the Vietnam War.

Harry A. Black.  This is my uncle.  He served in the Korean War in the US Army.  He passed away in 2006.  He is buried in the Arkansas State Veterans Cemetery.

Robert Eugene Conrad, US Merchant Marines, World War II, he is also buried in the Arkansas State Veterans Cemetery.  The Merchant Marines were a part of the US Coast Guard and those who served in the Merchant Marines were granted full veteran status sometime in the 1980's.  I found out that being a Merchant Marine during WWII was a very dangerous job and many of them were killed.

Entrance to Arkansas State Veterans Cemetery.  This one is located about 2 miles from where I live.

This is the same section where my uncle is buried.  I knelt down to get this picture.  It is very humbling to be able to kneel among these great people who served our country.  The flags on the graves tell a story no one can put into words!!

My great-great-uncle, Howard Crutchfield.  He made a career in the US Navy.  He is still living today.

Robert Eugene, my grandfather, and Richard Leslie Conrad, my great uncle.  Both served in the Merchant Marines during World War II.  They were twins.  Both of them were laid to rest in 2009.

One of my cousins.  Buried in Lone Tree Cemetery in Stuttgart, Arkansas.

Another cousin, buried in Bayou Meto Cemetery near Stuttgart, Arkansas.

Another cousin buried in Almyra Cemetery, Almyra, Arkansas.

Another cousin also buried in Almyra Cemetery.

Another cousin buried in Lone Tree Cemetery.

My great uncle, brother to my grandfather. He is also buried in Almyra Cemetery.

George and John Inmon, brothers,US Army, World War II, both deceased, George is my grandfather

This is my grandfather, George Washington Inmon. He served in World War II in a unit in Germany. I never knew this, but he suffered from PTSD. Although no one knew what it was at the time. He is buried in Almyra Cemetery.

This is my 4th great grandfather.  He is buried in a veterans cemetery near Johnson City, Tennessee.  He was in the Tennessee infantry.  Not sure of the war he may have been in or if he just served in the military.  He died in 1838.  I am very honored to have had someone take this picture for me.  Thank you to that special volunteer!

Yet, another cousin who served this great country.

Charley Thomas Inmon.  This was one of my uncles, father's brother.  I never got a chance to meet him in person, but I did get a 14-page letter written to me by one of his shipmates from the 1950's.  Charley was such a wonderful person and I sure wish I could have had the chance to meet him.  He was killed in a car accident in 1956.  He proudly served in the US Navy in the 1950's during the Korean War.  He served on the USS Coral Sea and the USS Franklin D Roosevelt.

This is my uncle Melvin George Inmon.  He served in the US Naval Reserves for several years.  He is buried in Greenwood Memorial Gardens in Greenville, Mississippi.

This is my husband and I.  Both of us served in the US Army.  I spent 9 years in the Army between active duty and reserves.  My husband spent several years in the Army National Guard as an air traffic controller.  I sure wish he would go back to work doing that!!!  The handsome young man in the middle is our oldest son at his 5th grade graduation.  He is now 14!!

Thank you for stopping by my little corner of the world.  If you remember, please thank a service member or a veteran.  Without us, you would not have the freedoms you have today!!!

~hugs, mel

Friday, May 11, 2012

Happy Friendship Friday

I finally made the trip to my grandparent's old house to pick up the wardrobe!!  My grandfather has been gone for 22 years and my grandmother has been gone for 10 years.  This is probably the nicest piece of furniture they had in their house.  It has been there ever since I can remember.  As far as my dad knows, he thinks it was something that they have had since they were married in 1929.  In looking at it more closely, it appears to be something that my grandfather may have made himself.  The glass was broken out of it by people who had broken into the house.  A lot of the other furniture down there was also stolen.  I am guessing that the people who broke in probably had to make a plan to get that out of there and we managed to get it before they did.  Not easy when the wardrobe is taller than the doorway and part of the flooring on the front porch is falling in.  Anyway, I am thrilled to be able to have salvaged this piece of furniture.  If it is something that my grandfather built, his craftsmanship is extraordinary.  The piece is solid and was very well built for someone without much of an education!!!  Anyway, While I was there, I looked around ad was able to salvage a few other things, such as:

1.  An old dress of my grandmother's.  It is the polyester knit material and is white with green polka dots.  I think it will make a very nice purse or bag.

2.  Some old school books from the 1950's that belonged to my aunt.

3.  An old blue and white chenille blanket that was on my grandparent's bed as long as I can remember.

4.  Some old maps and an old Greyhound Bus Lines brochure, along with some old papers from my aunt's school years.

5.  Three magazines.  An old Better Home and Gardens magazine from January 1968 and two different Time magazines both from 1968.  Those are in much better condition than some that I have that are less than two years old!!!

Anyway, I am thrilled that i am still able to hang on to the memories of my grandparents.  For two uneducated and hard-working people, they raised 5 wonderful children!!  I miss them all the time, but I know that they are looking down on me and my family everyday!!

So, I just want to thank you for stopping by my little space and going back down memory lane with me for a little while.  Hope you are having a wonderful Friendship Friday!!!  Be sure to stop by Create With Joy and share some stories with some old friends or make some new ones!!!

The old wardrobe being loaded into my dad's truck for a move to Little Rock.  Thank you to my dad for helping me to load this and bring it to my house.  And a special thank you to my grandparents.  I love and miss you everyday and hope that you are proud that I did not let this go with the house.

~hugs, mel

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Double Post Wednesday--Playing Catch-Up

I know I just posted my Wordless Wednesday, but I found one of my FB friends who is doing a creative at home Wednesday link-up party!!  You know me, I love to show off what I have been doing lately!!!  I post a lot about the cards that I make, but I do much more than just cards!!!  One thing I really love is my flowers in the front.  My mother-in-law owns a nursery and it is easy to get some beautiful flowers!!  I was there a few weeks ago and spotted this vintage blue strawberry pot.  It is a nice size and has three places on the side where you can plant other things!!  No, I did not plant strawberries in the holes, instead I planted some plants that seem to just flow over the side of the planter.

This is probably one of my most favorite planters that I have ever done!!  Wish I had a couple more like this to set around!!  Not sure what everything is in the planter (my mother-in-law picked most of them out).  I do have to say that this makes my house look very welcoming to people when they come over to visit!!!  Thank you Susan for hosting the blog party today!!!  Please stop by and visit her blog!!  She is an amazing woman!!

~hugs, mel

Another Great Wordless Wednesday

I often wonder, as I visit the local veteran's cemetery, about the people who served our country in years past.  I have two family members buried at the Arkansas State Veteran's Cemetery in North Little Rock, Arkansas.  I love to visit in order to pay tribute to the veterans buried there.  Not only because my uncle and grandfather are buried there, but because I feel a sense of pride when I do.  It almost brings tears to me eyes when I visit on a holiday where they put out all the American flags.  I wouldn't even try to begin to guess the number of veterans and their spouses that are buried in the cemetery.  But, to see that people want to have the job of taking care of the cemetery is just simply amazing.  On Memorial Day and 4th of July, the workers set out at the start of their day and place an American flag on the grave of each soldier.  Then, at the end of the day, they set out once again to take up the flags.  If you have never payed tribute to the American soldier in this way, I urge you to do so.  Once you are standing in the large fields of stone among veterans of wars past, it really humbles you to think that many people served this great country in order to protect our freedoms so that people can be free to do what they want to do.  And to know that on the day that I go to meet God; I, too, will be laid to rest among these great heroes of our country.  Ok, enough rambling, here are the photos I have to share today. 

This is my uncle.  He is the uncle that I was closest to my whole life.  He served on the front lines in Korea.  Somehow, he ran into one of his neighbors from his hometown.  His neighbor knew that my uncle's father was disabled.  So, he had my uncle sent back to Arkansas in order to take care of his father.  But not without my uncle serving on the front lines in Korea.

My grandfather, Robert Conrad, served in the Merchant Marines during World War II.  Being a Merchant Marine during the war came with many risks.  Coming under the Coast Guard, these men were basically escorts for merchant ships during war time.  For many years they were not really considered part of the military, according to our government.  Then, back in the 1980's, congress recognized these brave young men as veterans and provided legislation for these veterans to gain full veteran benefits.  Because of this, we were able to lay my grandfather to rest with honor. 

So, if you ever get the chance, make it a point to visit our veterans and tell them thank you.  Thank you for all the sacrifices that they have made to keep this country free.  And don't forget to stop by and join the fun at Create With Joy.

~hugs, mel

Friday, May 4, 2012

Happy Friendship Friday and a Giveaway

Hello and Happy Friendship Friday!!  I am going to do something different this week.  I am going to do a give away of some handmade cards and stationary all packed neatly into a wonderful little box.  What better way to celebrate friendship than to share with others.  Here are some pictures of what I am going to include in the box.  There will be some 4x6 cards that are all unique and no two are the same!!!  There will be some decorated envelopes for those cards.  I will also be including some mini cards with envelopes.  There will even be some bookmarks, book plates, calendar, etc.  I am not sure what all will be in it just yet, but I guarantee you will be surprised!!!  All you have to do is to leave me a comment saying hello.  On Monday, I will pick a random number from all the comments.  That person will win the box of goodies.  Also, don't forget to check out the other great blogs at Create With Joy.  There is always something fun going on over there!!!!!

These are pictures of the box the cards will come in.  I love it and may end up going back and getting another one for myself!!!

These are representative of what will be in the box.  I will hand pick them myself and you will be very surprised by what will be in the box!!!!!

Hope everyone is having a great weekend so far!!!  See you back here on Monday to pick a winner.  Be sure to leave me a way to get back in touch with you in case you are the winner!!!!

~hugs, mel