Monday, January 28, 2008


When Rena was about seven months pregnant with Regi, we took a trip to Mammoth Cave. It was to be our last getaway before KIDS. We went to the wax museum. We rode the Alpine Slide. We toured the cave. Then we went to our very first Haunted House. We thought we would never find our way out. When Rena gets hurt or scared, she generally starts laughing. Did I mention she was seven months pregnant? Who knew that we should have packed the Depends?!

While we are on the haunted house subject, there is a nice one in Wisconsin Dells. That's where we found ourselves on family vacation a few years ago. Momma went down the swimming pool slide for her first and last time. Her sunglasses floated to the top before she did! But, that's another story. We walked downtown to the haunted house. BJ had his cool new T-shirt with an eagle on the front. Famous last words have a way of coming back to haunt...Before going in to the scary place, he pointed to his eagle and said, "This thing isn't scared of anything!" Fortunately, he was a lot smaller than he is now, or he would have killed me hanging on to my neck like that on the way through the house!

Oh, yeah, Dave H. and the CRAZY cat. There I was, peacefully sleeping in our Dayton house soon after we were married. The phone rang. It was the Hilligoss household, located just a few blocks away. It seems that a CAT had gotten into Dave and Connie's bedroom in the middle of the night, and they needed assistance. In minutes we were there to find Dave chasing something around the bedroom. To be quite honest with you, I never did see that cat. I think he was hallucinating. No, I'm kidding. That stupid cat was crazy and running berserk all over the place. It was under the bed and then in the window behind the curtains. That was when we all thought we were crazy, because when Dave moved the curtains there was NO cat! It appeared from somewhere, and Dave clubbed it with a crutch that he kept handy to beat Connie into submission when necessary. Were we scared? No, we were brave throughout the whole ordeal!

One last thing...If you are looking for a pleasant evening, and you are in Gatlinburg, I recommend Ripley's Haunted Adventure. You can relax on the walk through the old Grimms and Reaper Mortuary. I think they have Depends for sale across the street at the drugstore.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008


Somebody, probably Uncle Phil, started rhyming everything when talking. For instance, he might say, "Look at the snow, Mo". That led to the most famous statement ever voiced by none other than Grandma Collingsworth, when a peanut fell on the floor. The words never forgotten by the Collingsworth family are here for your viewing pleasure, "Pick up the nut, Butt". We never let her live it down.
Anyone ever watched "America's Funniest Videos"? Of course, you don't usually have the video camera going when you should, or 'most everyone could "get it on camera and get it in cash". I have missed a few winners in the past. A friend of ours, who shall go unnamed, was playing softball at West Milton Campground. She ripped a double into right field, and unfortunately attempted to turn it into a triple. Halfway to third the skirt hit the ground and the triple was not to be!
Remax, our ancient dog, who, by the way, was supposed to pass away before any more dogs were added to the household (how did Dudley get here?) would have provided us with a $10,000 prize as one of the funniest videos. But, alas, we did not have the camcorder running. Uncle Merrill installed a new fence for us when we first became horseowners. Somehow, we forgot to inform Remax about the new obstacle between the house and the barn. The next day he ran to the barn as usual. Have you ever seen a three-foot-long dog with his snout stuffed two feet through a fence? He hit the fence at high speed, but he was none the worse for wear. He still lives on, in spite of Ally's grim assessment that he has three feet in the grave and the other on a banana peel. She thinks if he goes away, she can get Dudley II.
Regi remembers being tossed high into the air by Dad when she was little. She was pretty fearless. One cloudy day, after throwing her high into the air, it began raining. So, from that day on, I didn't throw her quite as high.
That's all for now. Send me memories if you have some come to mind.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Do You Remember When...?

It is time for a few memories from Memory Lane. I plan to devote some blogs to remembering. It will probably be a lot of disconnected happenings that get noted. If you are reading these, and have a memory that I was associated with and would remember, leave a comment or tell me and we will try to expound upon it if it would be a proper thing to do and wouldn't harm too many innocent bystanders!

Many of the memorable times that I spent in Cincinnati are connected to Craig Dahler and cannot really be discussed in public. You would have to contact him and find out more about the time he made a carload of guys mad at him and me. If there was trouble around, it seems that Craig and I were together. I think it was mostly him that was the trouble magnet.

Regi remembers Dad playing Spin-o-rama, a crazy game, thought up by Dad, that involved spinning a lightweight ball in the air to one kid after another until someone missed it. It continued until all but one "Grand Champion" remained. The Grand Champion would then receive "the BIG prize" - that no one has ever really received yet!

And, don't forget "The Trap Game", in which, one by one, the kids would become trapped in Dad's hand and have to figure out the magic button on Dad to push and get released. It could be his nose or elbow or knee or big toe or left ear. It was very educational!

Last memory of this session...remember how Dudley loved to go see Grandpa Coddaword (that's Collingsworth, but Regi liked to pronounce it Coddaword, or Dad made that up, too, I'm not sure which is true). Anyway, he loved to travel to Noblesville, where he would hurriedly peepee in the yard after the long trip and then gallop to their patio door - he knew which one - and rush into meet Grandpa and Grandma. Some times he would jump onto the bed and go to sleep with Grandpa. Now, he goes to visit Grandma and Grandpa Lavy at the Home where they live.

That's it until next time. Maybe one of those Dahler stories will be able to be told. Paul Clemens was a part of one big-time problem that I recall, too. Something about oranges being thrown at on-coming cars. But, I don't think Paul would be involved with that, do you?

Thursday, January 10, 2008

And Last, But Not Least

He called me and asked if he could meet me at Bob Evans for supper. Mom and I pretended we didn't know what he would want to talk about. Sure, he had been dating our little girl for quite a while. The Bob Evans meeting was to take place just before Ally's basketball game at Huber Heights Christian. I was joining Regi and Jason at the game. We were all driving separately and Regi was not to know that Jason and I were meeting prior to the game.

All went as planned, and I met Jason at the restaurant. Soon after being seated, the conversation took an ominous tone. Rather than directly asking if he could have my daughter, he asked something to the effect of "could I become your son-in-law"? Before the meal was finished, he was given permission and my blessing.

We went on to the game after eating, and Ally's team, the OPBA Blazers, roared to victory, one of very few wins for the season. Regi knew nothing of our clandestine meeting, and the very next day she and Jason took a small trip and he completed his two-day mission of talking to me and talking to her. She said "Yes", and the rest, as they say, is history, and two of my daughters recorded wins in successive days.

So, what do I think of Jason? He makes my daughter happy, and that makes me happy. He likes to surprise her, including where they were going on their honeymoon and where they were going on their one-year anniversary. Sounds like what I like to do with our family. I guess he is similar to me in that respect. Did she pick someone a little like old Dad? Maybe. She has to live with her decision for the rest of her life. And, I think she loves her decision and her man. Congratulations, Regi and Son, Jason Baker, last, but certainly not least!

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

My Biography

I was born near Gettysburg, Ohio. When I was quite young, I was adopted into a nice family. When I first came to live with my new family, I was given a room of my own. However, soon after that, I got to share a room with the youngest member of the family. At first, I wasn’t sure how much I would be loved, because where I was born, there was never a lot of love shown to me or my siblings. Our house was never very clean, and my dad ran around a lot. My mom was always very close, but then things changed and I had to leave.
When the man came to take me to my new home and family, his daughter came with him. She was very pretty and smelled nice. She held me on her lap all the way to my new home. I will never forget how scared I was. I kept my neck so stiff that it hurt. I just couldn’t be sure that I was going to be loved. Then, when we finally arrived, there were lots of people staring at me, it seemed.
One of the first things I can remember, was taking a bath in this nice, clean, white tub. At my old home, baths consisted of getting scrubbed by my birth mom until it hurt. Here everything seemed so clean and bright. The first day, after the bath, two of my new sisters went to town and brought back a new bed, just for me. From then on, I knew I was going to love it here.
Now, that I’m grown, I am so glad that I was adopted by this family. My adopted mom is so nice. She had surgery about a year ago, and had a close call. She was very sick, but has now recovered, and has lost a lot of weight. She is happy about that. It is okay with me, too, but she used to be a lot softer when I sat on her lap. Oh, well, she is my favoritest person in the whole world. She spoils me, and still to this day, after a bath, she holds me in a warm towel.
Before I close, let me tell you what happened a couple of days ago. There is this neighborhood guy who comes around once in a while. He is a lot bigger and taller than me. Usually, he is nice enough, but this particular day, he was harassing one of our dogs. This dog is old, about fifteen or sixteen years old, and I can’t stand guys being mean to animals. When I saw what was happening, I ran out the door and got into a fight with the guy! I actually knocked him backwards away from our old dog, but he was tougher than I thought. He threw me down and slapped me across the face. We fought for no more than thirty seconds-although it seemed like an eternity-before my dad and sister ran out to stop the fight. The guy ran off before they got there. It’s a good thing for him, because both my dad and sister said they would have done some pretty bad things to him if they had caught him! My eye swelled up real bad, and I had to end up going to the doctor. Outside of a few scratches and bruises in other places, I am okay.
Well, now you know a little about me that maybe you didn’t know before. If you know of any other kids like me, that need a home, maybe they could be adopted here. My mom said she wasn’t adopting any more kids, or maybe she said that if they came here, they would not be living in the house. But, I know she wouldn’t make them stay outside, so I don’t know what she meant. Anyway, I love it here. It’s the best family in the world. I have tried to post some pictures of me. I hope you can see them.
Love, Dudley The End