2017 A to Z: Letter Y… All About Me

2017 A to Z: Letter Y…

I thought I’d change the on-going 52 stories this year to an A to Z of 26 stories of  “All About Me”.  I plan to post bi-monthly, but I’m not holding myself to a certain time frame other than completing by year end. Originally I was going to do the “All About Me” for the 30 Day -April A to Z, but thought I might get just a wee bit long-winded, so I’m giving myself a longer time frame. Hopefully, by the time I reach letter Z, I will have written all I can remember about “me.” If you so feel inclined, why not join me in your own “A to Z” of All about Me!



Letter Y is for… Yearbook, Yards, Happy New “Year”, Where have the “years” gone, and “Year” of retirement



My Senior yearbook… I”m circled!

Yes… I’ve kept my high school yearbooks all these years. After reading about me during this past year, I’m sure you knew the answer to that already… as I must seem like I keep everything! My school put together yearbooks every year and included all grades. What a great thing, because… your photo is saved there in those books for four years of your life! I wish I’d been more involved and joined the yearbook committees, but back then it seemed more like a certain “click” who did that, and I wasn’t in that “click.” Funny how school works like that, and I bet they still do! Today, many of those very people are on my Facebook friend list… funny how things work! Maybe I was too shy and standoffish to even try to join!

I enjoy looking back through my yearbooks… and sometimes I have to go back and look up someone… well yes you do forget their names. What I really love is looking back at the history of my town through the photos that are on the advertisement pages. I never thought, back then, to take specific photos of the town I grew up in, but many of them are preserved on those pages. Saving your yearbook… can give you that walk down memory lane!


My first yard was at 216 Binns St. in Union Point for the first five years of my life. It was in that yard with my dog Butch, where I learned to walk. Mama even built me a playhouse in that yard… all by herself! There was no sidewalk on our side of the street, but there was one across from me and I first learned to roller skate there… in front of Mrs. Finch’s house; she was the only house that had a sidewalk; mama tells me I’d skate up and down all day long.

me in front yard Binns St.

Me in our front yard on Binns St. with Grandmamma’s famous Ola Lily next to me. It looks like I’m holding a rope/ leash? maybe Butch was there, but just out of the photo.

While there are no photographs showing the playhouse Mama built, or me skating on the sidewalk, or even of our house when we lived there… I still have my memories!

swing set

Me and my father in Union Point at our friend’s house at Easter! I’m thinking that’s Daddy’s car in the background!

In Perry, I spent a lot of time in my yard at 1321 Smoak Avenue and I had a playhouse there also… it started out as just a big box crate that Mama quickly transformed into a playhouse. Daddy had gotten it from work at (WRAF) Robins base… how he got it home, I have no idea! There was a big holly tree on the neighbor’s property line and Daddy built me a treehouse… although actually, it was only a big floor! Even though it was only an open platform, it was a quiet place to sit and read… probably Nancy Drew! My neighbor, who was a few years older than me, loved to tease me that it was really her tree. After Mama finally tired of me running inside to tell her that Jackie said “it’s really her tree”… Mama told me to tell her – “if it’s your tree, then move it.” Well, of course, I went right back out to tell her, and I probably started it off with “my Mama said“… I think that was the end of the “your tree – my tree” words!

Two tall pecan trees loomed high in my backyard on Smoak Avenue in Perry… and they were great for climbing. I’d climb all the way to the top… until Mama yelled for me to come down before I fell and broke something, I never broke a bone until a couple of years ago when I broke my foot, and it wasn’t from climbing a tree; I was only walking in a pumpkin field. When the pecans were ready for picking, I’d climb and shake the limbs to help the pecans loosen. Hubby and I rode through Perry this year, and when I rode by my old home, I looked up to see if those same two pecan trees were still looming high in the backyard… and yes they were!

The front yard on Smoak Avenue was always filled with kids as Mama often spent time with us all. She’d sit on the front stoop and play games like Mother May I, Red Rover, or even doing, trying to do the hula hoop with us! My front yard was a busy place… playing school in the summer, reading Nancy Drew on grandmamma’s quilt, and playing Barbie on the steps.

The Hillcrest yard was just a yard…. as I had outgrown playing in the yard by that time. Pretty much the only thing I did in that yard, was laying out in the summer on the back cement patio… sunbathing! But it was the first yard where I drove a car and got my first car to park in the driveway…. it was a 1965 pale yellow mustang!

Happy New “Year”:

daddy and me

Daddy and Me with my Mustang!

Celebrating the “new” Year always makes me feel a little sad…. saying goodbye to another year in my life while welcoming “whatever” was coming. When I married, my father still called me on New Year’s Eve, like clockwork, to wish me Happy New Year! I could always count on him calling, and he never failed… and I miss that! There were times he’d even wake me up as I had fallen asleep… while he was still out partying! Every New Years Eve, I silently tell Daddy “Happy New Year” as I look up toward Heaven! I sure wish I could have one more phone call!

Where Have the “Years” Gone”

The “Years” have gone by way too fast and no one realizes that… until it’s too late! We all rush through our busy lives too fast! As children, we can’t wait to hurry up and finish school for summer vacation… hurry to high school… hurry to get our license to drive… and hurry up and graduate! Once you graduate… your life really starts rolling faster than you realize. You marry, and before you know it, your kids are grown… all those baby cries, oohs and ahhs, walking and talking are only a memory… they now have kids of their own and you’re suddenly called grandma… although I’m called GiGi! Now you’re really beginning to feel old! At one time, the thought of being called “grandma” seemed like lightyears away!

Year of Retirement:

You hear the word “retirement” all your life… and think it’s so far away… and then it’s here! This (2017) was the year of retirement for me… with much hesitation. There’s just so much that goes with it… figuring out if you can actually afford to retire, all the Medicare stuff and everything else that goes along with it, and staying home all the time. Actually not having to get up for work is a nice thing and I’m looking forward to our snowy winters of watching the snow fall from my couch! If work hadn’t offered a buyout, I probably would still be there!

Retirement was scary, but my husband and I are enjoying the free time we have now to just go where we want… when we want. Recently we took long weekends in Vermont and New Hampshire to enjoy the leaf peeping and the countryside. They are beautiful states with very friendly people, and when spring rolls around, we will be going back. We had no specific agenda on those weekends, other than just get in the car and ride… stopping wherever we wanted. Next summer we plan on adding Maine to the last New England state we haven’t visited.

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We only saw Mt. Washington from a distance as it was late October and the road up was closed due to the weather –  it was snow topped! After noticing many white birch trees in New Hamshire, I learned it was their state tree! We plan on driving up to the tippy top of Mt. Washington next summer… If I don’t chicken out! Steve might need to bring a blindfold to keep me quiet as I’m not the best front seat passenger!

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We saw Moose crossing signs in both Vermont and New Hampshire… but No Moose!

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We did find a Moose at The Muddy Moose restaurant in North Conway, N.H; loved the food and atmosphere of the moose antlers chandeliers and the moose head mounted on the wall!

Per the suggestion of my son, we went to North Conway, New Hampshire and loved it. I’m definitely going back to ride the train through the White Mountains and I want to visit Mount Washington; we did see it snow capped from a distance but it was now closed to public travel. My in-laws spent their honeymoon in the White Mountains… I wish I knew where they stayed and what they saw while there… maybe they drove up Mt. Washington? While we saw many “Moose Crossing” signs, we didn’t see one live moose, but there are moose tours, so that’s on our to-do-list when we visit again.

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Definitely on my “to ride” list on our return trip!

vermont country store

The Vermont Country Store in Putney, VT.

Winding through nearby Vermont led us to the Vermont Country Store… plan on a few hours of wandering from room to room as you ooh and ahh at all the old-fashioned toys and penny candy you’ll find; I made my granddaughters Halloween bags from all the candies offered. I didn’t add the candy cigarettes though… as I thought I’d be chastised over that one… but I loved those as a kid! I did buy them the wax filled soda bottles of liquid… and they were a big hit, along with the red wax lips! And never leave Vermont without buying maple syrup and cheddar cheese… what a difference in taste!


Granddaughters having fun with the lips!

I found a few used bookstores and came home with a couple new Nancy Drew books… that was a good thing! My collecting tastes have somewhat changed from looking for cast iron to now… looking for Nancy Drew! Big difference! Hubby still checks out the cast iron, but he also spots the yellow spines!

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I even found a Jeanne’s Diner in New Hampshire! We arrived around dinner time… so I missed eating at my Diner!

In my years of retirement… I’m working hard to make the years count… do the things I want… when I want! Years are “precious” gifts… make them count every day!!!


Want to read more, then click… 2017: A to Z… All About Me!

© 2017, copyright Jeanne Bryan Insalaco; all rights reserved


About Jeanne Bryan Insalaco

My blog is at: https://everyonehasafamilystorytotell.wordpress.com/
This entry was posted in 2017: A to Z - All About Me, Daily Writings and funnies... and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to 2017 A to Z: Letter Y… All About Me

  1. Wow! Only one letter left!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Evelyn Smith says:

    Wonderful collection of memories.
    I pray you and Steve enjoy your retirement years with all your travelling.

    Liked by 1 person

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