Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Frank Dugan Loved to Sing

"Songs of Inspiration"
My grandfather Frank Dugan loved to sing.

I sang in a band during my high school years, later--solo at church functions. Once I sang for 200 plus people at a church revival, other smaller revivals, a women’s (church) conference and a wedding.  

I love singing, too.

One Sunday after I had sang for my church, a man who grew up with my mom, told me that my voice reminded him of my Grandpa Frank’s singing voice. I knew that my grandpa loved singing, but no one had ever compared my voice to his. 
I have a songbook of his. This well worn songbook has his name written inside, in my grandmother's handwriting. 
Frank Dugan.

The first song in the book: There Shall be Showers of Blessings

I can imagine that he sang with zest and perhaps sang to me once during the six months we lived with him.  Someday I'll hear Grandpa Frank sing again--in heaven. Perhaps we'll sing together.

The last page.
Here's my post on and photos of Frank Dugan's family.

And.that's.a.wrap! My third A-Z Blogging Challenge has been completed. In the process, I've brought out of hiding family treasures to share with you. I hope you enjoyed my posts.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Yesteryear and Sibs

My blog posts wouldn't be complete without a mention of my own siblings and a couple of photos.

A long time ago, my dad and mother gifted me with…a little brother and sister, but not at the same time. (You thought I was going to say a puppy or pet chicken, didn't you?) They were thoughtful folks. And I didn’t even have ask for their gift.
First there was just me.
 (I can't believe I found the picture of me and my rocking chair after I posted about the rocking chair.)

After that, there was just me and my little brother.  He was okay until he learned how to talk and told me my clothes didn't match and other things.
Then it was just me, my little brother and a brand new baby sister. The day she came home from the hospital with all of her cuteness, my little brother told the parents to take her back. Although cowboys always know best, they decided to keep her anyway.

In time she grew on us, well she grew on me. Our brother liked gourds better.

About the time the brother accepted her, I was having second thoughts because she had better hair than me.
Joking aside, they're pretty great for siblings as long as they remember who remains number one.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Belva Dugan--extra special

Born and raised in Missouri, my Aunt Belva Dugan (on the right) lived in Texas most of her adult life. The oldest of eight children, Belva married once, but after a few years, her husband divorced her. They had no children. She was a career woman.
My aunt was a wonderful woman, sweet and easy to talk to. She sewed and crafted, but I remember her most for her faith in God.
She left behind a sweet devotional book. I am its caretaker.

This is Aunt Belva's Streams in the Desert devotional book given to her by a Sunday School Class.

I am so happy I have this book. Why?

I can’t even count the times; I’ve visited this book in times of grief and hardship. Somehow it gives me new things to think about each time and if a book can comfort, it does.   

Two of my favorite poems wait for me inside its covers. 
Belva Dugan as an infant. My ears stuck out like that, too.
Belva Dugan first born daughter of Frank and Sadie (Stafford) Dugan.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

White Bowl

No one ever left my Grandmother Sadie Stafford Dugan’s home, hungry—or at least I didn’t. With a house full of mouths to feed every Sunday after church, there was lots of cooking going on.

Three foods I associate with my grandmother’s cooking: pan of dressing, boiled oatmeal (never instant) and green beans from the garden. Can green beans melt in your mouth? Grandma’s did.
Grandma Sadie raised eight children with my grandfather Frank. She had a lot of practice cooking and not with modern food or conveniences.

The bottom Grandma's bowl is beautiful, too.

This is my mother's family of origin.  Little Grandma Sadie is in the middle of the photo. My mother's (Joyce) head is between her parents.
Grandma Sadie and I during the time we lived with my grandparents. Dog in background, photo bombing, name unknown.
A white bowl, green beans and a precious grandma. Enough said.


Friday, April 25, 2014

Vintage Picture

Today’s treasure from the past is simple and precious. This picture was given to my grandmother Minnie Pitts Powell, at Christmas, by her mother Lula Wright Pitts when Minnie was 12 years old.

I’m unsure if my great grandmother Lula purchased the picture as one unit or if it was her idea to sandwich the paper picture of fruit between the metal frame and cardboard herself. The cardboard is roughly cut which makes me think that it might have been Lula’s creation for her youngest child Minnie

On the back of this (my) vintage picture, my grandmother recorded its history in her handwriting: 
"A Christmas Gift from my mom when I was 12 years old."
This gift must have meant something to my grandmother. Not only did she keep it, she wrote a bit of its history on the back.
See photos of Minnie and Lula here. 


Thursday, April 24, 2014

Unique Brooch

Some called them pins, some call them brooches. I called them either/or depending on the day and my mood. This vintage brooch is not a family heirloom, but could be one day since it now belongs to me. This is how I became its owner.

There was a dear woman who worked for our school district for many years as the special education director. I considered her my friend. When she decided to retire, I was saddened.

My collection of brooches

On one of her last days with the district, she brought a collection of her brooches, to the school, that she wanted to share with the people who had admired the ones she'd worn over the years. Because I had a little collection of brooches myself, I was thrilled when she asked if I would like to pick one out of her collection for mine, to remember her by.

I picked this unique one—a large snowflake with clear rhinestones. (I wish the photographs actually did the pin justice.)
Guess what?  I do think of her when I wear it.


Wednesday, April 23, 2014

T's Carnival Dress

I’ve shown you my carnival dress from my childhood here; now let me show you one of my daughter’s carnival dresses. Although it’s not as old as my other treasures from the past, it is a treasure.

This dress is made of pink satin with a white lace overlay and sleeves. Also made of satin and lace is a detachable peplum, for the waist. The dress has two skirts layers with the top layer forming a scallop hem. The best part? I had a blast making this dress for my little daughter.
When you can’t find what you want, make it, I always say. I found the right pattern and recreated to make my rendition of a Cinderella dress.

If I hadn’t sorted my pictures into boxes with the hope of getting them ready for albums, I would have a photo of her in the dress. I will add that photo as I come across it again.
One final note, after chasing the satin around the room while sewing it, I vowed to never sew satin again, and I have not.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Stafford and Dugan

Stafford and Dugan Photo Family Tree 

Joyce Dugan Powell and her eldest daughter--me!
Joyce and Teresa

Joyce, as a child, the little blonde. Except for this time in life, she and her siblings all had dark hair.

Joyce Dugan Powell (Present Day)

Frank and Sadie (Stafford) Dugan

Joyce's parents: Frank D. Dugan and Sadie Stafford Dugan. Sadie was not given a middle name.

My parents and I lived with my grandparents for the first six months of my life and then moved to Joliet, Illinois (for three years). My sources told me that my grandparents doted on me. Grandpa Frank would come in from milking and say, “Where is my baby?”

Grandpa Frank died while we lived in Joliet.

I don’t remember Grandpa Frank, but Grandma Sadie was a huge part of my life—growing up. My best memories of her revolved around Sunday get-togethers. On any given Sunday, after church, I could count on good food, lots of cousins to play with and aunts and uncles telling us what to do.

Amanda Stafford (on the right) was Grandma Sadie's mother.  My mother (Joyce), the eighth child of Frank and Sadie,  remembers a few things about her Grandma Amanda. One thing she remembers was that Amanda smoked a pipe.
The other woman in the photo is “Grannie Davis” I think this is Amanda's mother. (I don’t remember her first name, but will update).

Grandpa Frank’s parents: John Dugan and Elizabeth Williams Dugan
 And there you have it. The maternal side of my family tree featuring the Staffords and the Dugans.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Rocking Chair

There's not much to say about this little rocking chair except that it's mine--from my childhood.
An entry in my baby book reads that I received for my second birthday: a rocking chair, coloring book, balloons, pull toy, doll, canister set and a suitcase.
Through the years, I've shared it with my children and my grandkids. And now? Millie just happened to be passing by and...get down, Millie!
Who's Millie? Check out Monday's post at Journaling Woman.
R for Rocking Chair!

Saturday, April 19, 2014


When my grandmothers were growing up and when they became adults with their own homes, women made quilts to keep their families warm on winter nights.
 Minnie Pitts Powell, my grandmother, made two quilts as wedding gifts for me and my groom: pink and white squares made of cotton—quilted (see photo below) and a purple double-knit made of squares—tacked.  The purple knit quilt was as warm as any wool blanket even if  it was heavy and I couldn't move under it, until morning. I no longer have the purple quilt.  

The pink and white quilt is backed with a colorful stripe.
 This blue quilt made with some type of star and strips was given to me after Minnie passed.
Up close star.

My grandmother Sadie Stafford Dugan used (mostly) feed sacks on her quilt.  There are a couple of other fabrics, probably clothing that was worn out.
As with most families of that era nothing went to waste.
One day I will back it.  
Here's one of the fabrics--nothing I would put in a child's room, but so cool.
This is another fabric on the quilt top--a much more peaceful scene.
Quilts made by women before me. Quilts made for a purpose and with their own hands. A job well done, Sadie and Minnie--my beloved grandmothers. 

Friday, April 18, 2014

Powell and Pitts

A Photo Family Tree

My dad- Ronnie Powell
Ronnie Powell with Ronnie Jr. and Teresa


Remember my Grandfather Hurschel Powell and his mother (my) Great Grandmother Carrie Howe Powell?  This is Carrie's family.

Carrie is sitting on the lap of her father, John Howe. (I will update this post later with names of the others in her family.)

I don't have a photo of my Great Grandfather Charles Powell (my grandfather's dad).
This is Mark Powell. I'm unclear if this is Charles Powell's dad since in the documentation, I have, it says that Charles's dad's name is Martin, Mart for short, but my dad wrote on this photo Mark Powell. I've found that my relatives were called something other than their legal names. I'll update this, too.
Remember Minnie (Pitts) Powell, my grandmother? Her parents James and Lula (Wright) Pitts?
This is Lulia's (Lula) parents

Susan Minerva (Hudgepeth) Wright (her parents were Samuel McDowell and Sarah Wilson McDowell).  James Mitchel Wright (his parents were Joseph Wright and Abadiah Brown Wright).

This is James Pitts' parents.
Henry Pitts  (will update on my great great grandmother's name).

I wish I had better pictures, but I'm grateful for what I have. 
So did you follow my ramblings?
Thoughts on my Pitts-Powell family. I see my dad in many of these faces, but as I look at the photos of my family members (on both sides) I favor no one. Very interesting.