Tag Archives: family

9/11 Memories, 15 Septembers Later

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American flags in front of our house every 9/11. We will never forget.

When the White House was evacuated on that fateful day in 2001, my sister, part of President George W. Bush’s administration, was among those working at the White House. Instructed by Secret Service to evacuate and then to flee as fast as possible from the White House, women removed their heels as staffers in the White House and Old Executive Office Building ran for their lives, fully aware that United Flight 93 was approaching the nation’s capital. My sister has barely talked about that day … the rawness is still real … but I am forever grateful to the heroes of Flight 93 who prevented a tragedy at the Capitol or White House.

I will never forget September 11, 2001 … and I don’t want to forget. Fifteen Septembers have passed, and I am still easily overcome with emotion.

That week my husband and I were vacationing in Colonial Williamsburg with our two teenage children. The morning of September 11 we had just arrived in the Colonial area, freshly-purchased annual passes in hand, when a Colonial interpreter told us of the World Trade Center attacks. I immediately quickly walked off to the side to call my mom in Richmond to see if she had heard from my sister in D.C. Amazingly, perhaps because her Austin cell phone was still routing through Texas, my sister was able to call and reassure our mom that she was okay even as tens of thousands of others in Washington encountered jammed phone lines.

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Vintage garden flowers a link to the past

By Lynn R. Mitchell

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My yard is in bloom including this vintage iris grown by my grandmother, aunts, and mother. As I moved throughout the years, it moved with me. #Family

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The red hot pokers are a smorgasbord for the plentiful goldfinches. These came from my mom. Heirloom plants are a connection through the years with family members who may no longer be with us, an annual reminder of those before us who loved to be in the garden. Memories are in the flowers around me….

Photos by Lynn R. Mitchell
May 24, 2016

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A son … ‘daring and loving and strong and kind’

 Lynn R. Mitchell

??????????“I have a son, who is my heart. A wonderful young man, daring and loving and strong and kind.” — Maya Angelou

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, Matt! I have to indulge a bit today since it’s my son’s birthday.

In this picture he was four years old as he held his six-month-old sister. He was my little buddy who arrived three weeks early on a February day … a cheerful first born of a first born of a first born who was the first grandchild and only grandson.

Thoughtful and introspective, and a source of joy since the day he arrived, this tiny six-pound baby became a little blond curly-headed boy who loved baseball and soccer, and grew into a kind, loving, industrious young man who is now almost six feet tall.

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‘Twas the day before Thanksgiving … Virginia family traditions

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By Lynn R. Mitchell

‘Twas the day before Thanksgiving and all through the house
Lots of goodies were cooking (but not the mouse). 
The pies were all set on the counter to cool
While Ma in her apron was a holiday-cooking fool.

That’s my sad attempt at putting a poetic spin on the holiday as I swirl around the house on Thanksgiving Eve.

Like many, I’m in the kitchen today prepping for tomorrow’s big meal with family. My sister Lori and I traditionally take on the cooking and baking, something we both enjoy, as we incorporate old favorites along with the occasional new dish.

We broke tradition three years ago when we roasted a chicken, a new idea that carried over last year and will continue this year. Lori’s cooking the bird along with a spiral ham, and she and her husband Jon are adding their own side dishes including sweet potato casserole. As for me, I make passed-down family favorites from aunts who are no longer with us: macaroni and cheese, and chocolate pies. This year I’ve added a very veggie garden salad and dressing, fresh steamed kale, mashed potatoes, and crustless pecan tart ramekins.

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It’s Black Friday … are you shopping for bargains?

ShoppingBy Lynn R. Mitchell

A long-time tradition has fallen by the wayside for my sister and me. For years we enjoyed the morning bustle of joining the crowds on the Friday after Thanksgiving, looking for shopping deals while cheerful Christmas songs played in the background and shoppers crowded aisles to reach blockbuster items planted to entice us to part with our money.

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The final Thanksgiving menu

aa71a-thanksgiving3By Lynn R. Mitchell

We all collaborated and when it was finished and everyone had contributed their dishes, we ended up with a bountiful feast for Thanksgiving dinner: Roast chicken, spiral ham, mashed potatoes and gravy, sweet potato casserole, macaroni and cheese, very veggie garden salad with dressing, fresh steamed kale with red wine vinegar, cranberry sauce, stuffing, yeast rolls, chocolate pie, and pecan tarts. (See also ‘Twas the day before Thanksgiving … Virginia family traditions.)

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7th Annual Salisbury Turkey Waddle

??????????By Lynn R. Mitchell

It was a wet race this year in Salisbury subdivision in Midlothian for neighbors who participated in the 7th Annual Turkey Waddle, a 5K course held on Thanksgiving Day through the neighborhood beginning at Salisbury Presbyterian Church. A shorter, two-mile route is popular with parents with small kids or babies in strollers, grandparents, and those walking dogs. The begin at the church on Salisbury Road, then down Starcross, onto Kingslynn, and right onto Kingsmill Road and back to Salisbury Road and the church. Last year there were 900 runners who ended the race with hot chocolate and cookies to start their Thanksgiving Day.

 

??????????Mom and son …

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Happy Thanksgiving from LynnRMitchell.com

By Lynn R. Mitchell

Thanksgiving 2

“Reflect upon your present blessings, of which every man has plenty; not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.” — Charles Dickens

The writers at LynnRMitchell.com — Daniel Cortez, David Karaffa, Kurt Michael, and myself — extend Thanksgiving greetings with gratitude to our readers for helping us become a successful statewide voice in the Virginia conservative blogosphere. We wish you a joyful day with family and friends as America pauses to give thanks for the blessings we all enjoy. Have a safe and happy Thanksgiving.

Cross-posted

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‘Twas the day before Thanksgiving … Virginia family traditions

By Lynn R. Mitchell

‘Twas the day before Thanksgiving and all through the house
Lots of goodies were cooking (but not the mouse). 
The pies were all set on the counter to cool
While Ma in her apron was a holiday-cooking fool.

My sad attempt at putting a poetic spin on the holiday as I swirl around the house on Thanksgiving Eve … LOL. Like many, I’m in the kitchen today prepping for tomorrow’s big meal with family. My sister Lori and I traditionally take on the cooking and baking, something we both enjoy, as we incorporate old favorites along with the occasional new dish.

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Mixed bag of weather on Thanksgiving Eve

ThanksgivingBy Lynn R. Mitchell

Snow in the Valley, rain in Richmond, blizzard in New England, sunny in the South. On this day before Thanksgiving, the most traveled day of the year in the U.S., weather is not helping those who need to travel for the holiday weekend. Students traveling home from universities are running into snarls at airports, train stations, and interstates. Safe travels to all those who are heading out to be with family and friends for fellowship, food, fun, and shopping on this special day….

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Gillespie relays story of Bush #41 respecting office of Bush #43

George W. Bush 47 with GHW BushBy Lynn R. Mitchell

Talk to any of the Bush alumni and they are full of stories about their time in service to the White House. Today on Facebook, Ed Gillespie relayed just such a story that happened during his time in the Bush #43 White House, and it had to do with Bush #41.

Ed Gillespie wrote:

With President George W. Bush’s new book about his father coming out, I want to share this memory from my time in the White House.
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A day with Mom at Dayton Farmers Market

By Lynn R. Mitchell

??????????While my parents visited last week, Mom and I slipped away, driving the 30 minutes from my house to the Dayton Farmers Market in the Old Order Mennonite town of Dayton. It was Thursday and a horse and buggy were at hitching post when we arrived. The owners soon climbed in and clopped-clopped away down Route 42 toward “downtown” Dayton in rural Rockingham County.

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My parents

By Lynn R. Mitchell

??????????My parents came to visit this week for five days of spending time together enjoying autumn in western Virginia. Not only did we enjoy lively conversations and a visit to the Dayton Farmers Market but they were here for Halloween and our trick-or-treaters.

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Remembering Dennis Burnett 1964-2014

By Lynn R. Mitchell

???????????????????????????????Looking out over Elliott’s Knob in western Augusta County. This one’s for Dennis.

[Editor’s Note: When I left Augusta County almost two weeks ago to spend time with family in Florida, Dennis Burnett was working at his job bringing jobs to the Valley. When I returned last night, he had passed away and been buried. How quickly life can change in the span of a week. I wrote this while in Florida, reflecting about this friend to so many. See also Augusta County’s Dennis Burnett passes away and Memorial Service today for Dennis Burnett.]

“I like your pictures of the county!”

Dennis Burnett was across the room heading my way after a board of supervisors meeting at the Augusta County Government Center, trademark reading-glasses-on-top-of-head, with that wide Dennis grin on his face. I looked at him quizzically. Had he been looking at my blog?

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