SOLON & BEYOND, Week of October 19, 2017

by Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percy
grams29@tds.net
Solon, Maine 04979

Good morning, dear friends. Don’t worry, be happy!

This column is being written early because we are going on our yearly vacation in Rangeley. Have been thinking seriously lately about the definite need for PEACE in our troubled world!… and so, hoping to get some of you, who read this column each week, to think about being a peacemaker.

Confucius had some wise words on how to start: Peace in this world: “When things are investigated, then true knowledge is achieved, when true knowledge is achieved then the will becomes sincere, then the heart is set right (or then the mind sees right); when the heart is set right, then the personal life is cultivated, then the family life is regulated; when the family life is regulated, then the national life is orderly, then there is peace in this world.”

Make Peace: As citizens, we have a large responsibility . Our daily lives,, the way we drink, what we eat, have to do with the world’s political situation, Every day we do things, we are things, that have to do with peace. If we are aware of our lifestyle, our way of consuming, of looking at things, we will know how to make peace right in the moment we are alive. (words by Thich Nhat Hanh, Peace is Every Step).

Eleanor Roosevelt had some good advise back in her time; The basis of world peace is the teaching which runs through almost all the great religions of the world. “Love thy neighbor as thyself.” Christ, some of the other great Jewish teachers, Buddha, all preached it. Their followers forgot it. What is the trouble between capital and labor, what is the trouble in many of our communities, but rather a universal forgetting that this teaching is one of our first obligations.

And now some thoughts from President John F. Kennedy: Building Peace: “But peace does not rest in the charters and covenants alone. It lies in the hearts and minds of all people. So let us not rest all our hopes on parchment and on paper, let us strive to build peace, a desire for peace, a willingness to work for peace, in the hearts and minds of all of our people. I believe that we can. I believe the problems of human destiny are not beyond the reach of human beings.”

More thoughts from people in the past longing for peace in our world, President Dwight D. Eisenhower: “Lasting Peace, I like to believe that people in the long run are going to do more to promote peace than our governments. Indeed, I think that people want peace so much that one of these days government had better get out of the way and let them have it.”

Become a Peacemaker: Each day you are provided many opportunities to practice peacemaking. St. Francis wrote. “For it is in giving that we receive.” By giving peace you will receive peace, and after you are at peace, your problems all dissolve . By becoming a peacemaker you are literally providing yourself with a remedy for all your anxious moments. Today be on the alert for any opportunity to become a peacemaker. Words by Wayne W. Dyer, There’s a Spiritual Solution to Every Problem.)

I really like this one by Abraham Lincoln for his Second Inaugural Address, March 4, 1865. “With malice toward none, with charity for all…let us strive on to finish the work we are in…to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations.

I am going to use two of Percy’s memoirs in this column because he truly believed in peace! (Working Together: “Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much, words by Helen Keller.)

And…”Let there be peace on earth and let it begin with me; let there be peace on earth, the peace that was meant to be.” Words by Sy Miller and Jill Jackson, 20th-century songwriters.

There I go, dreaming again! I was afraid that would happen after the fact that this column and little paper reached out and reunited two brothers after 50 years….But amazing things happen, and wouldn’t it be great if the above words inspire some of you to become peacemakers and help to settle the mess this world is in? I shall pray on it!

SOLON & BEYOND, Week of October 12, 2017

Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percyby Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percy
grams29@tds.net
Solon, Maine 04979

Good morning, dear friends. Don’t worry, be happy!

Legos Time will be Saturday, October 14, from 10 a.m.- noon, at Stewart Public Library, 37 Elm St., North Anson. Regular library hours will be 2:30 – 4:30 p.m. that same day.

The Embden Community Center will be serving chicken cordon bleu at there monthly public supper on Saturday, October 14, at 5 p.m.

On October 21, Steve & The Good Ole Boys band will be playing at the Embden Community Center from 7 – 11 p.m.

There were at least 125 motorcycle riders at the Solon Hotel on a perfect, beautiful fall day recently who were all going for a ride in this event. This is the 23rd year that it has taken place starting at the Solon Hotel. A spaghetti supper would be served to those who were hungry after their ride. Eleanor Maclean was making her famous recipe of spaghetti, which she has done for many years, and is now still doing it at 88!

Somerset Woods Trustees and Brian Alexander are still at it! Two more work days have been scheduled to complete Phase 1 of the new Coburn Woods Trails before their grand opening, scheduled for October 29. (Put that date on your calendar too!)

On the e-mail that I received it tells of two working days, Oct. 7 and Oct. 15. for those Eager for Exercise Before the Snow Falls? No tools are necessary as Brian has plenty but if you have a favorite trail cutting tool please do bring it. Starting time is 8:30 a.m., work until 1 p.m., or as long as you have to work.

We appreciate your help to build these trails! Once all phases are completed they will have around six miles of trails for all users, including mountain bikes.

I know how much many of you love Percy’s memoirs and before that, his wise words of wisdom! And so in memory of Percy who died two years ago, I am going to share especially those of you who are ‘Cat Lovers’ with some information on cats. Some of this information comes from a little three-inch square book that I bought at a yard sale, and in the introduction it states, “No wonder the ancient Egyptians worshipped cats as gods – is there an animal with more dignity, more aloof serenity, and innate grandeur? What other domestic creature behaves like an honored guest and is treated as an equal?”

Cats fix us with their gaze and put us in our place. They beguile us with their startling affection and charm us with the beauty of their fluid bodies. They amaze us with their composure and delight us with their agility.

Cats do as they please, and for that we admire – and even revere them. They treat us as companions, demanding and receiving our respect as their due. The fact that they choose to spend their lives with us is a gift we accept gratefully.

Now for a few of the quotes in this little delightful book in memory of Percy! “His friendship is not easily won but it is something worth having” – words by Michael Joseph, English publisher; and by Lilian Jackson Braun, American writer – “To understand a cat, you must realize that he has his own gifts, his own viewpoint, even his own morality.”

One by Mark Twain says, “One of the most striking differences between a cat and a lie is that a cat has only nine lives.” And by Jim Dais, American cartoonist – “Way down deep we’re all motivated by the same urges. Cats have the courage to live by them.” I like this one from Abraham Lincoln – “No matter how much cats fight, there always seem to be plenty of kittens.”

And so I will close with this one which was anonymous – “No self-respecting cat wants to be an artist’s model.” (I didn’t find that to be true, Percy let me paint him several times!)

SOLON & BEYOND, Week of October 5, 2017

Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percyby Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percy
grams29@tds.net
Solon, Maine 04979

Good morning, dear friends. Don’t worry, be happy!

I haven’t come back to earth yet after again reaching my goals from writing these many columns for papers for over 50 years! It is such amazing news, in my mind, anyway, for this wonderful little paper, but especially its editor Roland Hallee.

Now I will back-track a little, I know I have shared with you how I first met Roland back when I was writing for the Somerset Gazette, in Skowhegan. Then, when that paper closed and he called and asked me if I would like to write for The Town Line. He wasn’t the editor of the paper at that time, but I was hired to write a column and I did under a couple different editors for awhile but couldn’t seem to get along with one of them, and started my own paper for awhile. Then Roland became the editor, and again I was writing for The Town Line. When I went to South China and met with Roland as the editor, I asked him point blank, “How much mushy stuff will you let me get away with?” And I don’t remember his exact words, but in essence, he said to write from my heart! That was what I was waiting to hear, and he has always kept his word!

Now for the reason I haven’t come back to earth yet is because one day last week when Lief and I happened to be at Griswold’s having lunch, two men stopped at our table,and one of them started saying, “Oh you’re just the person I wanted to see!” It was Bob Therrien, who I had done a column a few months ago about him and his Cuckoo clocks that he builds. He was very excited and he grabbed my hand and started thanking me and the article that I had written for this paper about him because it had made it possible for his long lost brother to find him.

It seems that someone in the many towns this little paper covers, had seen the article and cut it out and sent it to Bob’s brother, Donald Therrien, and that morning that we saw them at Griswold’s he had come to Bob’s home on North Maine Street, in Solon, and surprised him. Very seldom have I seen anyone so excited and grateful as Bob was, and he said, “What a good thing you did for me!” His brother was very appreciative and pleased about finding his brother also and thanked me over and over.

Bob said, “This is the best thing that has happened to me in 50 years!” (They hadn’t seen each other in that many years.)

My goals in writing all these years have been to bring, peace, love, happiness, and laughter, along with the facts of happenings going on in this area all these years. When I learned what happiness one of my columns had meant to Bob Therrien and his brother Donald, it made me very happy indeed! And I’m hoping they can get together for many more happy moments in the years to come.

October 8 will be Country Sunday/Open Mic from 1 – 4 p.m., at the Embden Community Center. The October 14 supper at the Embden Community Center will be held at 5 p.m.

Dan Schall Ministries preached and sang at the North Anson Congregational Church on Sunday to a very attentive audience. He and his wife Linda have compiled a little book of Stories & Anecdotes which is very interesting. In the introduction it says, “Our stories come from church bulletins and writings that people have sent us. I am going to use one of them this week for Percy’s Memoir: Young Construction Worker: A strong, broad shouldered young man at the construction site was bragging that he could outdo anyone in a feat of strength. He especially made fun of one of the older workmen.

After several minutes, the older worker had had enough. “Why don’t you put your money where your mouth is,” he said. “I will bet a week’s wages that I can haul something in a wheelbarrow over to that building that you won’t be able to wheel back.” “You’re on, old man,” the braggart replied. “Let’s see what you got.” The old man reached out and gabbed the wheelbarrow by the handles. Then, nodding to the young man, he said, “All right, get in.”

SOLON & BEYOND, Week of September 28, 2017

Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percyby Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percy
grams29@tds.net
Solon, Maine 04979

Good morning, dear friends. Don’t worry, be happy!

Have just one other little bit of Solon Elementary School news from the Solon School Newsletter, and it is: Our Maine Dance institute (MDI) program for students in grades 4 and 5 started on September 13. This is our students’ chance to learn two great dance numbers, have a lot of fun, and shine on the stage at the MDI performance on Saturday, April 28. All your child needs is a pair of indoor sneakers and a good attitude to be part of this exciting program!

The next meeting of the Embden Historical Society is scheduled for Monday, October 9, at 7 p.m., at the Embden Town House. There will be election of officers and committee reports. Following the business meeting a few people will get up and tell of their accomplishments.

The Anson-North Anson Snowmobile Club will be doing its annual craft fair to be held at Carrabec High School on Saturday, November 4. To be held from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

If anyone wants to try and get a table space, you should call the school as soon as possible. I have had a space there for years, it is a fun and great fair.

On Saturday, September 30, there will be a North Anson Congregational Church Yard/Bake Sale at the church from 8 a.m. until 1 p.m.

Dan Schall will be the guest speaker and have a worship concert at the North Anson Congregational Church on Sunday, October 1. He comes every year and it is always a most inspiring service. The hour of worship at the church starts at 10 a.m.

Received an e-mail about the Embden Community Center’s regular events: Neighbor to Neighbor Thrift Shop/Lending Library 10 a.m. – 3 p.m./Wed., Fri. and Sat. (Note: Thrift Shop will be closed at noon on Wednesdays for January and February.)

Suppers: 5 p.m./second Saturday each month, except December.

Country Sunday: 1 – 4 p.m./second and fourth Sunday. By donation.

Bone Builders/Maine General-RSVP: (Low impact weight training for any age. All the exercises are done with chair, weights and slow movements to build muscle/bone strength.) 9 – 10 a.m./Mon. and Wed.

Sewing Class: 10 a.m. – noon/Wednesdays.

Weight Watchers: 5 – 6 p.m./Wednesdays. Come in and sigh-up…new members accepted.

TOPS (Take Off Pounds Sensibly): 10:30-11:30 a.m./ Wednesdays.

Community Center meetings: 6:30 p.m. Thurs. prior to the second Sat. Supper.

Yoga: 6:30 p.m. (one hr.) Bring your mat. Cyndia 566-5089, Thurs. starting Sept. 14; weekly; by donation.

If you have any questions, contact Wayne at 474-1065.

Received the following e-mail from Angela Stockwell: Dear Readers: Margaret Chase Smith has a bobblehead! Leeke Lecture coming up in November. NHD students recognized by “American Experience.” Fiber Materials names MCS SCholar. Navel Academy appointee returns. Lots of interesting stuff! Here’s the link: https://drive.google.com/file/d/OBzVM1LsAXnZuelpobVIKcVF1bjg/view?usp=sharing. Enjoy!

And now for Percy’s memoir entitled “Practice Makes Perfect” “When I feel alone and lonely And my empty world seems void, I relax for just a moment And I trust joy will unfold. For in my quiet time I listen To the gentle voice within, And He hears my prayers clearly For He let’s the sunshine in. Oh, how marvelous this practice Which can make our dreams come true, But the beauty of the challenge My dear friend, is up to you. So remember perseverance Is a gift, but yours be choice, And if you continue in this practice Rest assured you will rejoice. For no words can ever tell you Of the treasure deep within, But with the art of silent practice He will let the sunshine in. (words by Chris Zambernard.)

SOLON & BEYOND, Week of September 7, 2017

Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percyby Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percy
grams29@tds.net
Solon, Maine 04979

Good morning, dear friends. Don’t worry be happy!

Received the following e-mail from the Somerset Woods Trustees: Please join “Louise Coburn” (Our Founder in 1927) and the Somerset Woods Trustees at our 90th birthday party and our 2017 Annual Conservation and Awards Celebration., Sunday, September 10, at The Lakewood Inn at Wesserunsett Lake, Madison, from 6 – 8 p.m.

We are excited to announce our award winners for this year: Conservation: Alfred Jackson for his generous donation of land in Madison. Stewardship: Jeff Lloyd for his generous donation towards the creation of a new trail at Coburn Woods.

Schedule for the evening: 5:45-6 p.m.: Check in. Meet “Louise Coburn”, 6 – 6:45 p.m.: Hors d’Oeuvres and cocktails (cash bar). 6:45 p.m. Speaker: Andrew Barton (forest ecologist, science writer and professor of biology at the University of Maine at Farmington): “The Changing Nature of the Maine Woods.” 7:15 p.m., Auction, 7:30 p.m., 90th birthday cake cut by Louise Coburn and Trustees, 7:50 p.m., Conservation and Stewardship Awards, 8 p.m., raffle – drawing by Louise Coburn.

The cost is only $30/person which pays for the hors d’oeuvres, service and venue. Please come and enjoy the night. It’s the last time we will all meet “Louise Coburn.”

Here it is Labor Day as I write this column, not sure where our summer went this year, it was short to say the least! Lief and I took a leisurely and beautiful ride up to Greenville on our anniversary yesterday, and were amazed at all the red leaves that had turned from green. It seems rather early for that to be taking place, but it does make for beautiful scenery to paint…. which leads me to reminder that our Painting Club will be starting up again at Skowhegan Adult Ed and we always like to see new faces there, along with long time friends. It is starting up on Monday, September 11, and is from 5:30 to 8 p.m. at the school. Tuition is free, but there is a registration fee of $5. You can sign up at the school and it is for painting in any medium that you prefer. We welcome you to join us in lots of fun.

I’m going to let Percy have more words in his memoirs than usual, and this one is entitled, “Gratitude:” When the frost has spread a silver shawl, And the leaves have turned to gold, When the fields of fruitful harvest Are a glory to behold – When dear friends and kinfolk gather For the feasting and the fun, And the cheer of home and hearth fire Fills the hearts of everyone – Then it’s time to count our blessings For the wondrous gifts we share, Reflected in each joyous heart With grateful praise and prayer. (words by Elisabeth Weaver Winstead).

Since I’m low on actual news, I’m going to print a wonderful illustration of someone’s version of “Life”. Life gives us friendship along the way to cheer our hearts on the darkest day. Life gives us the joy of a baby’s smile full of affection and free of guile; Life gives us the thrill of a mother’s care though days be cloudy or days be fair. Life gives us sleep to ease our pain; and gives us sunshine through the rain. Life gives us knowledge to understand and gives compassion to everyone. (words by Alva Trafton Gosselin.)

I found the above poem hand printed in beautiful script in a frame at a yard sale this weekend, and when the new friend, (who reads this column faithfully) and I read it together, I knew I had to print the good news about life to all you readers. The new friend gave me a great deal! Hope you like it.

SOLON & BEYOND, Week of August 31, 2017

Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percyby Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percy
grams29@tds.net
Solon, Maine 04979

Good morning, dear friends. Don’t worry, be happy!

On August 13th Betty Lightbody, of North Anson, was honored with a wonderful 90th birthday party put on by her daughter, Carol Oliver. There were 25 family members present and a total of 57 friends and family who were there on this special day, some coming from far away places such as North Dakota (where Carol lives), Colorado, Oregon and North Carolina.

Betty said she was so pleased to see so many of her nieces and nephews who she doesn’t see very often, along with her children and many friends. In Betty’s words, “It was unreal to have so many show up!” She also commented on “All the lovely food.”

Carol and her husband Guy had traveled from North Dakota. Betty’s grandson, Jeremy Rogers and his family also came from North Dakota and spent a week in North Anson. Again in Betty’s words, “They came all that way. It was a great gathering!”

Then on August 15, which was Betty’s actual birthday, 25 family members honored her again with their presence and another smaller get-together. My congratulation and best wishes to you Betty, on your wonderful 90th birthday celebrations.

The September 11 Embden Historical Society meeting has been canceled. Many of the members are involved in putting on a huge luncheon for over 400 bikers from the Bicycle Coalition of Maine at the Embden Community Center. This is a major undertaking. The annual meeting, election of officers and committee reports will be given at the October 9 meeting. There will also be an Antique Show & Tell at that meeting.

The Country Sunday/Open Mic has been canceled for September 10th. The next Country Sunday will be September 24th and then on the second and fourth Sundays of the month.

My many, many thanks go out to Carol Dolan for her faithful sharing of this news with us, it is very greatly appreciated.

And now from the First Congregational Church of North Anson’s bulletin: The Fellowship Committee is selling calendar raffle tickets again this year to benefit a church mission trip.

On August 31, at 6:30 p.m., the first choir rehearsal for the 2017-2018 church year will be held at the church. On September 1, 2, and 3, the annual Church Camping Trip at Cathedral Pines, in Eustis; Sunday Morning Worship in the Pines at 11 a.m. and church picnic to follow. Sundays starting on September 10, at 9 a.m., Adult and Teen Sunday School; 10 a.m. Children’s Sunday School during the worship service; 6 – 7 p.m. Pilgrim Fellowship; Tuesday’s starting on September 12, at 6 p.m., Yarn etc. Fellowship; Wednesday starting on September 13, at 5:30 p.m., Weekly Soup and Evening Devotional; Thursdays starting on September 14, at 11:30 a.m., Bible Study at the Parsonage, Choir Rehearsal at 6:45 p.m., and September 16 at 8 a.m., Women’s Devotional and Coffee.

I realize this is lots of dates into September, but the way time flies, I thought if you were interested in any of these things, you could cut out this information.

And now for Percy’s memoir, Cultivating Friends: Sow a seed of praise today, Plant a kindness seed; Listen to a troubled friend, Help someone in need. Compliment a weary soul Too fatigued to try; Shine forth rays of hope on all, Comfort those who cry. Scatter deeds of love each day, Plant each row with care; Sprinkle joy along your way, Soak each one in prayer. Ask the Lord to bless each one, And one day you’ll reap A harvestful of loving friends To cherish and to keep. (words by Connie Hinnen.)

Percy collected many great friends when he was alive and helping me with this column. One day recently Lief and I were up to the Dam Diner, and one of Percy’s friends recognized me from the picture by this column and greeted me with a big hug! I had no idea who she was, but she introduced herself and said how much she had loved his wise words, and now his memoirs. It made my day! He was a great cat and helped me so much.

SOLON & BEYOND, Week of August 24, 2017

Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percyby Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percy
grams29@tds.net
Solon, Maine 04979

Good morning, dear friends. Don’t worry, be happy!

There is a bag sale ($1 regular size and $2 for larger bag) ‘til August 26 at the Embden Community Center Thrift Shop. The Thrift Shop is open: Wed., Fri. 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. The Lending library is open when the Thrift Shop is open. There have been over 35 books donated to the Neighbor to Neighbor Thrift Shop to be sold at a very modest price. There are a few that are first edition and are signed. They are almost all hard cover with dust jackets; many on the Best Seller’s list. Many of the books for example are by a familiar author, Nicholas Sparks. The Embden Thrift Shop is open Wed., Fri. and Sat. from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. The Lending Library is also open when the Thrift Shop is open.

Just to let you know that dues are due in August. Dues are $3 per person payable to the Embden Historical Society. You may mail your check to Brainard Tripp, Treasurer, 445 East Shore Road, Embden, ME 04958 (566-7384

Was also very pleased to receive the letter from Charlotte Withee, of Anson, about the 67th Smith Family Reunion. The family of the late Henry and Gertrude (McLaughlin) Smith held their 67th reunion on July 30, 2017, at Lake George in Canaan. The descendants of Clarissa (Smith) Paine were the host.

There were 69 members and three guests present. Elmer’s family: Bert and Eileen (Weston) Cyr. Robb and Stefanie (Cyr) Wainwright. Harry’s family: Lester and Gail Smith, Sylvia Brennau, AmyBrennau, Madeline Therault and Jackson Theriault.

Agnes’ family: No one attended. Oliver’s family: David Smith, Judy Smith, Craig Smith, Anthony Laney, Chris Laney, Rachel Laney, Nick Krajewski, Arianna Krajewski, Chris Gorman, Beth Gorman, Tyler Badershall and guests : Rebekah Powell, Jacob Trauy, Linda Smith.

Gertrude’s family: Ethan, Emily, June and Sam Knox, Diana Michaud (Merry) , Rosemary Merry, Sharon Mellow, JohnZiacoma, Jennifer Withee, Andrea Smith,Nathan Merry, Monica (Atwood) and James Wetzel, Shirley Mellows, Dillinger Mellows, Mary Mellows Marin Celmer, Charlotte (Mellows) and Ralph Withee, Jessica Merry, Brooklyn Johnson and Ava Merry (Michelle,s Daughter.) Cecil’s family: None attended.

Clarissa’s family: Susan Paine, Joan Steele, Darrell Gerrard, Nancy Smellie, Danielle, Jake, Alli, Krish, and Jaxson Gerrard, Daniel and Robin Gerrard, Rebecca Pessy-Weeks, Melissa Perry, Becka Coryell, Caleb, Caitlyn, and Lienna Vinson. Deana Tardiff, Troy Beane, Erik Vinson, Darcie Verrill, Kelli and Christopher Coares, Indie and River, Diana Gerrard Tardiff, and Norma Gerrard. Vincent’s family: None attended.

The oldest member was Rosemary (Mellows) Merry, age 84. Youngest Was Marin Celmer, age 1 month; daughter of Mary Mellows and Brian Celmer.

The weather was blue skies, white clouds and at times a little chilly, a beautiful day.

Somerset Woods Trustees 2017 North Country Challenge will take place September 30. Walk, Run, Canoe, Kayak, or Bike the Bingham to Solon Trail. Rain or shine. Discover the beauty of Maine’s North Country along the Kennebec River and along the future Maine Long Trail.

Challenge begins at North Country Rivers, in Bingham, (7 – 10 a.m.; Breakfast at North Country Rivers (optional).

If you register by September 13, the 2017 North Country Challenge T-shirts will be available for only $14 each. You can register between September 14 – 30, but T-shirt supplies will be very limited or not available.

Registration forms available on SWT’s website: or if you don’t have a computer you can reach them at Somerset Woods Trustees P.O. Box 833 Skowhegan, ME 04976.

And now for Percy’s memoir entitled A Smile… “A smile can mean fulfillment Through most any stage of life Or finding peace with nature Far away from crowds and strife. A smile may be approval Or a hint that one may care; A smile may be the start of Two lives that want to share. A smile can be just passive Or a pleasantness self-styled; A smile can show contentment In both mother and her child. In taking on life’s hurdles, There’s strength for every mile In the hope of each tomorrow And another chance to smile.” (words by Irwin William Kaiser.)

SOLON & BEYOND, Week of August 17, 2017

Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percyby Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percy
grams29@tds.net
Solon, Maine 04979

Good morning, dear friends. Don’t worry, be happy!

Was very pleased this morning when I turned my computer on and discovered the August letter from the New Hope Church, my many thanks for that.

There was a great turnout for the benefit supper for Zack Corson, which was held at Solon Elementary School. Zack has been struggling for years with kidney disease and related complications. Nearly $5,000 was raised that evening.

Since their last letter, several in the shelter have been saved, which Pastor Tim said, “This is what it’s all about!”

The property in Windham that was offered for use as a women’s shelter is on track. The parties involved have gotten together and are making arrangements to set up and use the property as a shelter to be patterned after the one in Solon.

In May, Pat and Tim were able to take their first real vacation in a very long time. The church had taken a collection and had purchased a gift certificate to a B-B in Bar Harbor right close to the waterfront. They spent a few days in early May there and had a wonderful time exploring the beautiful area and just plain relaxing.

Because of a grant given to the church for staffing, they are pleased to announce the addition of a new position at the shelter and the hiring of a wonderful lady from their volunteer pool to fill that position.

They have also added two new members to the shelter board; Brent Small, who is an associate pastor at Faith Evangelical Free Church, in Waterville, and Charlie Pratt, a member of New Hope who has been greatly involved with the shelter from its beginning.

On July 30 the New Hope Church was blessed to have Temple Veil in concert.

They have started a landscaping project around the shelter and have set out some shrubs and plants. Again, my many thanks for sharing your news with us.

Had been dreading last weekend for a month or more, but as usual, I shouldn’t have worried! Lief and my family were each having a reunion on the same weekend, his was on his mother’s side was to be held in Massachusetts and mine was to be held up at Dave and Pete’s camp at Flagstaff as always, on the second weekend in August. Lief and I had talked it over and agreed that we should each go to our own family reunion. Both Lief’s father and his mother had come from very large families. His mother’s family had come over from Norway and settled in several states in the U.S. so there were family members who came from shore to shore at his reunion, he thought there were around 200 people at the Massachusetts reunion. Feel really bad that I missed meeting all of them, but I haven’t yet figured out how to be in two places at once!

There were 29 of us at the Rogers reunion up in God’s Country where peace is beyond understanding. This was to be more special than usual if possible, Jeremy and his family were to travel from North Dakota for the reunion, and hadn’t seen them for several years.

As always, Peter and Sherry brought up their portable breakfast wagon and served everybody delicious breakfasts. Dave had built another bunk house, and there are five bedrooms, a spill over room, a screen porch and a tenting place for sleeping. Dave had set up his smoker for delicious ribs, Pete had cooked a huge pot of chili and everyone attending had brought lots of food, so we enjoyed feasting. Again, Mark and Karen had come up with designing another game which everyone always looks forward to. There were four different groups competing, and I happened to pick the winning team and we all received a medal.

There was so much laughter and love shared on this special wonderful weekend, but several people commented on how much they missed Lief, as did I.

The days at camp were beautiful skies of blue and so Percy’s memoir this week is entitled, Master Artist; “God paints countless pictures For his children to behold, From the lovely sunrise To the sunset tinged with gold. He made this earth His canvas While the brush is His great hand; With true and glorious colors Every landscape He has planned. The artist can but copy From God’s own masterpiece … He paints the perfect pictures, His glories never cease.” (words by Lois Anne Williams.)

SOLON & BEYOND, Week of August 10, 2017

Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percyby Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percy
grams29@tds.net
Solon, Maine 04979

Good morning, dear friends. Don’t worry, be happy!

The very first thing that I need to do this week is apologize to Dotty Dunphy for the wrong name under the group picture in last week’s paper, I am very sorry.

The next Embden Historical Society meeting is scheduled for Monday, August 14, at 7 p.m. at the Embden Town House. Jean Schipke will give a presentation along with slides on “My Memories of Devereux.” Refreshments will follow. All are welcome. My many thanks to you Carol for being so dedicated with sharing interesting news, keep up the good work.

Many of you have told me how much you enjoy the stories I sometimes write about living in Flagstaff before we were flooded out. This last weekend was our “Old Home Weekend” held at the little chapel in Eustis.

I am going to print an old, yellowed clipping that I found among my treasured memories that a dear friend had written just before she moved at the fast approaching flooding of the town.

It is entitled, Flagstaff – My Home Town:

” ‘Twas just a sleepy little town in a valley,
The prettiest place that I know.
In summer ’twas covered with flowers,
In winter, with a blanket of snow.
Our store was all that it needed,
The houses were all on one street;
The school offered all you could ask for,
And a quaint church made it complete.
The lake was handy for fishing,
(On hot days the swimming was grand),
“Twas also a nice place for boating,
Or a picnic nearby on the sand.
In winter, the lake was for skating,
Or you could ski up on the hill while the wind blew the snow all around you and gave your nose quite a chill.
The forests were pleasant for hiking or for camping out in the fresh air;
In winter we used them for hunting,
With our pick from raccoon or bear.
Now all of this is over – The cheerfulness is gone.
Thye people are moving far away,
And the place seems quite forlorn.
The trees have been cut by the woodsmen,
The lake filled with birch-bark and wood,
At first we swam in the river,
Now that no longer is good.
The houses left empty by neighbors,
Have been filled with men I don’t know;
They have ripped out the walls and the finish,
Leaving enough to keep off the snow.
The church has been robbed of its windows,
They have found a new home above town.
Even the graveyard is empty –
The green grass is now dark and brown.
Yes, the town is almost deserted Of all the folks that I know,
And I myself will be going,
Perhaps before the snow.
Yes, this is my home and I love it!
It’s beauties will always be mine;
And ’twill linger on in my memory From now till the end of time.”

This was written by Avis Burbank.

This poem says it all and each year there are a few missing that gather at the little chapel, which looks much like the church that was in Flagstaff. The same beautiful colored windows, the old bell and at the service on Sunday, as always, tears nearly fell as I held the old Pilgrim Hymnal (copyright 1931) as in days gone by. My good friend and classmate, Isabelle Burbank Milbank, and I graduated in 1947 from the Flagstaff High School and she called us the ‘dinosaurs,’ (now I’ve been called a lot of names, but that was a new one!) But along with her husband, Floyd, I am sure we were the oldest people of only 18 in attendance. They had traveled from New York to take part in the Old Home Days.

Now for Percy’s memoir, he and I both loved the inspirational poetry of Helen Steiner Rice. “People everywhere in life from every walk and station, From every town and city and every state and nation Have given me so many things intangible and dear, I couldn’t count them all or even make them clear… I only know I owe so much to people everywhere And when I put my thoughts in verse it’s just a way to share The musings of a thankful heart, a heart much like your own, For nothing that I think or write is mine and mine alone… So if you found some beauty in any word or line, It’s just “Your Soul’s Reflection” in “Proximity with Mine.”

SOLON & BEYOND, Week of August 3, 2017

The Solon Alumni Association gathered on July 15 with these members of the class of 1967 celebrating their 50th reunion. Front, from left to right, Dotty Padham Lightbody, Eunice Waugh Kenn, Gary Farnham and Maurice Robbins. Back, Mike Bishop, Billy McDonough, Cheryl Hanson Edgecomb and Brent Brown. Contributed photo

Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percyby Marilyn Rogers-Bull & Percy
grams29@tds.net
Solon, Maine 04979

Good morning, dear friends. Don’t worry, be happy!

Don’t have any real news to share with you this morning, so I am going to answer a question that has been asked by many recently, “Have you sold your house yet?” The answer is YESS!

Never in my wildest dreams, did I ever imagine that I would have the courage to attempt to sell it myself! Being empty for a few years while I was attempting to dispose of memories and stuff didn’t do it any good, so decided to try and sell it myself. There were three people who had expressed an interest in it last year and I thought the first one who asked really wanted to buy it. After it was completely empty this spring I asked him if he still wished to buy it and he had changed his mind. So I called the other two who had showed an interest and took them through it and the last one decided to buy it, which pleased me greatly! I was not born to be a salesman, and was definitely not into selling real estate.

I sold it to Solonely Acres LLC, and the closing was last Friday in Skowhegan. My blessings and prayers are with them as they take on the task of tender, loving care to bring it back to a beautiful house as people drive into Solon on Ferry Street. The new owners had already started clearing away all the bamboo that had really taken over the yard, I had done my best when I lived there to get rid of that stuff, but it just takes over!

I have faced many challenges in my long life, but clearing out my house of memories, (when I wrote for several different papers, before Percy, I closed the column with, “from Salada Tea and me! And many people sent me Salada Tea tags to use). On days that I came across some of the boxes of the tags and dumped them, were not my best days. Frank and I bought that house when Mary was ten months old and the boys were four, six and eight, it was a good place to bring up a family.

Came across a good piece of words for anyone struggling with a foreseen challenge, and it is, “Challenge is a dragon with a gift in its mouth… Tame the dragon and the gift is yours.” (Very true, words by Noela Evans.)

The other day a little book was loaned to me from a friend who reads Percy’s wise words, and as you all must know by now I love inspiring and humors quotes. This is one of them calle “Belief Is All You Need!” A man was lost while driving through the country. As he tried to read a map, he accidentally drove off the road into a ditch. Though he wasn’t injured, his car was stuck deep in the mud. So the man walked to a nearby farm to ask for help.

“Warwick can get you out of that ditch,” said the farmer, pointing to an old mule standing in a field. The man looked at the haggardly mule and looked at the farmer who just stood there repeating, “Yep, old Warwick can do the job.” The man figured he had nothing to lose. The two men and Warwick made their way back to the ditch.

The farmer hitched the mule to the car. With a snap of the reins he shouted, “Pull, Fred! Pull, Jack! Pull, Ted! Pull Warwick!” And the mule pulled the car from the ditch with very little effort.

The man was amazed. He thanked the farmer; patted the mule and asked, “Why did you call out all of those other names before you called Warwick?

The farmer grinned and said, “Old Warwick is just about blind. As long as he believes he’s part of a team, he doesn’t mind pulling.” (words by James W. Moore) Thanks so much Henrietta!

And as always, I’m waiting for your news to share, just call me, or write, or e-mail, or I’ll come and get what you write if it isn’t too far away.

And so for Percy’s memoirs, they are short this week so I’m going to let him have two short ones! “A moment’s insight is sometimes worth a life’s experience.” (words by Oliver Wendell Holmes 1809-1894) and “Don’t cry because it’s over – smile because it happened.”