A mixture of the spices of life: humor with subtle hints of nostalgia and spirituality.

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Location: Ohio, United States

These are stories that have appeared in my "History She Wrote column" in the Dayton Daily News or a book titled "A Hike Through History" that I wrote for Third Graders.

Sunday, January 30, 2005

Curse of the multipocket purse

Curse of the multipocket purse By Rosalie Yoakam My husband, Bill, sometimes suggests that I leave my purse at home. He doesn’t understand that I simply can not leave home without it. Some of the things in my handbag are vital. I might need that wadded up tissue or the lipstick worn down to the metal or the aspirin that has been in there so long it is powder. For some time I have dreamed of an orderly bag. Most of my purses have been shoulder bags and I’ve been disappointed that they contained only two spaces to organize items. So, I was really excited when I purchased a new purse. It has five pockets and compartments in a nice compact shape. I didn’t even mind that it weighed five pounds when loaded. Finally, I thought, I would have an organized handbag. The reality is I can’t find anything. I forget if I put the checkbook in the zippered pocket on the back or the snapped flap on the front. And, although I am sure I put the car keys in the middle zippered compartment, I can’t seem to find them. Part of the problem is the middle compartments are narrow and deep and naturally keys being heavy fall to the bottom. So, I stick my hand in, up to my elbow, and sort sightlessly through the debris. It reminds me of one of those games we are forced to endure at baby or wedding showers. Can you guess what is in the bag? Sure, I’ll guess. Just don’t ask me to retrieve it. Instead of the keys I will pull out nail clippers, lip gloss, and a little flashlight. I especially hate this searching game when I am hurrying to my car in a huge parking lot. All the way I’m digging for keys, dropping rejected items back in, and praying no muggers notice my plight. Other things, difficult to find in the inner recesses of my purse, are ball point pens. This is a real problem when I am in a checkout line. First, I must find the checkbook. Once I discover the checkbook, I need something to write. There is an elastic band near the checkbook in which to slip a pen. But, invariably, someone forgot to replace it when they finished using it, and now it is dancing with the keys in the dark. And, I must take time for another fishing expedition. This time I come up with a tin of tea bags, a tube of hand lotion, and an emery board. By the time the pen surfaces, people in line behind me are humming and I don’t think it is Christmas carols. I’m ready to send this mutated kangaroo of a purse to meet its maker. Perhaps Santa has the right idea. Just toss all the toys in a bag and sling it over your shoulder. When you want something, open the sack wide. At least you can see what you are sorting through.

Thursday, December 02, 2004

Autopilot syndrome can drive one to distraction

Sometimes I suffer from a brain malfunction. I call it the auto pilot syndrome. It usually happens when I am performing a familiar and repetitive task. My mind seems to think my body can do the task without help, decides to set the body on auto pilot, and wanders off to explore more interesting thoughts. Often it goes on mental errands, looking over the agenda for the day or problem solving. Sometimes it engages in pleasant daydreams. This frequently happens as I am driving. When my brain returns, it begins to question. Where am I going? Am I on the right road? In the right town, even? See the rest of this column at the Dayton Daily News web site: http://www.daytondailynews.com/neighbors/content/localnews/neighbors/warren_index.html Choose the article title "Autopilot syndrome can drive one to distraction" for the complete article.

Thursday, November 04, 2004

Driving vacation can go round unexpected bend

Vacations are supposed to be a time to relax, have fun and enjoy new places. Some of our vacations have fit the description. See the rest of this column at the Dayton Daily News web site: http://www.daytondailynews.com/neighbors/content/localnews/neighbors/warren_index.html Choose the article title "Driving vacation can go round unexpected bend" for the complete article.

Thursday, October 21, 2004

Bears once roamed Warren County

Bear hunting in Warren County is a thing of the past, but an account of a 1797 bear expedition near Waynesville lives on in journal of a Tour in Unsettled Parts of North America in 1796 & 1797 by Francis Baily.
See the rest of this column at the Dayton Daily News web site: http://www.daytondailynews.com/neighbors/content/localnews/neighbors/warren_index.html Choose the article title "Bears once roamed Warren County" and complete column will be displayed.

Saturday, October 09, 2004

Wounded Survivors

This true story took place in what is now the state of Ohio. My article about it appeared in a Christian magazine called Power for Today

Wounded Survivors
BIBLE THOUGHT: “Bear one another’s burdens, and thus fulfil the law of Christ.” (Galatians
6:2, NAS)
In the early years of the Northwest Territory seventy armed men were lured into an Indian
ambush. Half of their number were quickly killed. Most of the remaining managed to escape.
Two days later two wounded survivors stumbled across each other on the now silent battle field.
One man had broken both arms while the other had two shattered legs. Alone, they had little
chance of survival. Together, they could provide for each other’s needs.
The man with functioning arms dressed their wounds. The one with working legs chased game
towards the other who shot it. Dead game and wood were kicked by one fellow to the other who
built a fire, cooked the food, and fed both of them. One man placed his hat in the teeth of the
other who waded into a nearby river and plunged his head under the surface. He returned the
water filled hat to his companion. Together they survived for six weeks until their wounds had
healed and they could make their way home.
As a community of believers we are all wounded survivors of this world. Each of us have
suffered our personal hurts and effects of sin. Individually, we are handicapped but together we
can provide for each others’ needs. God gave us fellow Christians so that we can support each
other until we make our way home to heaven.
Hymn: Blest Be the Tie
Heavenly Father, thank you for giving us fellow Christians to help us with our woundedness. In
the name of Christ. Amen

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

Telephone Technology Has Come a Long Distance

This is my Dayton Daily News column from August 26 Telephone Technology Has Come a Long Distance My husband, Bill, was in a morning meeting with community leaders when a friend used the walkie talkie feature of his cell phone to contact him. Everyone heard, “Hey, Bill. Are you up yet?” The incident made me think of the changes I have seen in telephones. In the 50’s phones were permanently attached to the wall with a phone wire. There was no such thing as clip ends on the wires and there were no portable phones or cell phones. We had one phone at our house and it had a rotary dial. In the early 60’s we moved to Findlay, Ohio. The phone company was using that area to test market something called touchtone. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to try it. Now I have four phones at my house. They are all touchtone and three are portable. In fact, one portable has been lost for several days. The last time this happened we found it in a file drawer. I wonder where it is hiding now. When we wanted to use the phone in the 50’s we picked the receiver up and if we were lucky, a phone operator answered. She said, “Number, please.” We would tell her the number of the person we wanted to call. The numbers were short and made up of combinations of words as well as numbers. I seem to recall our number was White 123. But, sometimes when we picked up the receiver, we would hear other people talking because we had a “party line”. In other words, we had to share the line with some of our neighbors. If they were using the line, we had to wait until they were done before we could place a call. It was very frustrating when someone got on the phone and talked for a long time. Worst of all, everyone knew when you got a phone call. All the phones on the “party line” rang when someone on that line got a call. Customers had their own special code ring. Our ring was two longs and a short. If the phone rang with a different combination than ours, we were not to answer. Some people would wait until their neighbor answered their call and then pick up the receiver and listen in to their neighbor’s conversation. We were happy when we finally got a “private line”. What is that music? Oh, I’ve gotta go. My cell phone is ringing.

Thursday, September 30, 2004

Cleaning "allergy" could be hereditary

It didn't surprise me to learn that my granddaughter, Jessie, does all the dusting at their house. I was startled though, when she said, "My mother is allergic to dust." I wasn't aware that my daughter, Lisa, had this allergy. See the rest of this column at the Dayton Daily News web site: http://www.daytondailynews.com/neighbors/content/localnews/neighbors/warren_index.html Choose the article title "Cleaning allergy could be hereditary" and complete column will be displayed.