Children's Journals

This is my journal, with posts mainly about myself. If you want to see posts specifically about Maia or Liam, check out the links to their journals under the "My Interests" section on the right side of my blog page.

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Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Memories of Oscar from his grandchildren

Again, I asked my sisters and cousins for memories of Grandpop throughout our childhood. Please share them with us.

We Remember...
…Grandpop’s ribs. They were the best ever, and nothing will ever compare to them.
…Playing in his backyard, under the weeping willow tree, in the hammock, with the horseshoes, and around the pear tree.
…Eating corn on the cob and sitting at that old wooden picnic table outside, trying to avoid the splinters.
…Helping to decorate the Christmas tree at their house, while watching a Christmas movie in the background.
…His Christmas ham dinners, with lots of goodies to go along.
…Climbing over the back fence to get to the playground (the fast way).
…Helping him to make pasta from scratch. He would roll it out and then hang it to try on lines of string in the house. Of course, our helping meant us eating the raw spaghetti dough strands.
…Easter egg hunts in the backyard.
…Playing on his old computers.
…Thanksgiving dinners at his house. The huge long table with everyone squeezing in around it, and the awesome turkey, and of course the little things like olives and pickles. And Grandpop saying grace before we stuffed ourselves, forgetting to make room for dessert.
…That he traveled to many places, and listening to him talk about them always seemed like amazing stories of far-away places.
…Thinking that the upstairs was like a secret attic, because we hardly went up there.
…Going to the zoo together in his little car, and witnessing some rather naughty monkeys peeing on the car.
…Playing out on the front porch, which always seemed huge.
…Flying in his little airplane…at first too afraid to get on, then changing our mind last-minute.
…His amazingly strong sauerkraut.
…The way he listened to what was happening in our lives, and was genuinely interested.
...His humor.
…His deep laugh and his big smile.
…His amazing and loving hugs. Even at the very end.

We love you Grandpop. We will always remember you.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Passing of Oscar Semora

My Grandfather was a strong fighter all the way, but he finally lost his battle with cancer this past Thursday (August 12th) at 12:07am. I would have posted sooner but I was away at Pennsic when it happened and am only now just finding time to get on my journal. Again, I don't know that I have the words to express feelings. And I feel so drained with everything going on, I can't even cry all that much. Which feels really wrong. I am very sad that yet another person is no longer in my life, that I will no longer be able to see and talk to this man. All of my regrets from my earlier post titled as such...they are still there, only now it's worse because it's definitely too late. I essentially have one grandparent left with which to share my life with, and to find out more about - my one surviving grandmother. My one surviving grandfather unfortunately doesn't even know I am there if I visit.

Anyway, since I don't know what to say just yet about my grandfather (memories of him are forthcoming), I will post his obituary here.

Oscar W. Semora, Jr., age 79 of Gibbstown, NJ passed away Thursday, August 12, 2010. Born in Pine Bluff, Arkansas he is the beloved husband of Eleanor M. (nee Wilson) and beloved father of Susan Semora of Suffolk, VA, Debra Ogbin & husband Robert of Pittsgrove, NJ, Barbara Baran & husband Matt of Little Rock, AR, Linda Morrow of Sherwood, AR, Wayne Semora of Orlando, FL. Lisa Higgins & husband Robert of Media, PA., brother Raymond & wife Chris of MI, sister Barbara Ann of Sherwood, AR, 11 grandchildren & 4 great grandchildren.
Oscar served in the US Army Occupation Forces in Germany. In 1959 he joined NAESU as a Tech Rep. in Washington DC, later transferring to Philadelphia in 1966. He was dedicated to furthering Naval Aviation throughout the years, earning the respect of many. In 1978 he received the NAESU Equal Opportunity award. He was appointed NAESU's first Technical Director in 1994 and retired in 1996. Oscar enjoyed flying his own airplane and was a member of the Masons and the Gibbstown Senior Citizens Organization.

Pennsic Post Postponed

I do plan to post about my Pennsic trip, but right now I have more important things to post about. So check back in the weeks to come for the Pennsic stuff.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Further Loss

Sadly, my Great Grandmother, Gladys Semora, passed away this morning, after suffering a heart attack. She was 95. I am too tired and emotionally drained to find eloquent words to say about this latest sadness. I certainly wish I had known her better. She lived in Arkansas, I lived in NJ most of my life. I remember her mainly from the few visits made over the year, but I haven't seen her since February 2008, right before Liam turned 1. She had the Arkansas twang accent, and she was very self-sufficient. I want to be like her, living so strong and so long. I am sad that she has gone, but I know she has live a long, full life and she has moved on to something new, something different.

For those whom are suffering greatly from this new loss, I am very sorry...and I am here if you need me.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Memories of Gladys from her grandchildren

I asked my sisters/cousins to come up with some memories of Grandmom, to add to mine and to share with everyone. They delivered. Here they are (in no particular order). Please take time to enjoy them .

  • Lots and lots of swimming.

  • Doing flips off the side of the pool.

  • Eating watermelon until we were covered in red sticky juice and jumping in the pool to clean off.

  • Using the "window" from the laundry room into the back room for games and the like.

  • Sleep-overs at her house, lots-o-girls in one bed!

  • Gram's variety of pickles. I used to think her house was the only place you could get those cute little pickles. I thought the rest of the world had to have dill, only Gram had variety.

  • Her sweet iced tea; like the pickles, I thought it was tea you could only get at her house.

  • Eating Little Ceasars (Pizza! Pizza!) around her bar.

  • Playing at the playground at Bethel Mill Park.

  • Feeding the ducks at Bethel Mill Park, then racing to get into the pool as soon as we got back.

  • Playing with her touch-lamp.

  • Night-time pool swimming adventures (bathing suits optional?).

  • Eating out at Friendly's.

  • Waiting there overnight while mom was in labor with Sandy. And then being told she had been born (and thinking they had named her after a beach).

  • When we would leave, grandma and grandpa would stand at the front door and wave until you couldn't see them anymore.

  • She was completely fine with tons of people invading her home almost every single weekend in summer to use her pool.

  • Hanging out in the pool under the diving board while we were taking turns jumping.

  • Changing in the smallest, hottest shed ever!

  • Her voice. Can't describe it. Just felt...warm, and alive.

  • Partying up at the anniversary around the corner from Cindy's (it was like a block party).

  • Playing mermaid and never wanting to get out of the pool.

  • Watching fireworks down at the school or from the pool during summer.

  • Having to put on sunscreen in the car on the way over so we could go swimming right away.

  • Being given the priviledge of spraying water into the birdbath.

  • Waiting 30 minutes (an eternity) after we ate to go back into the pool.

  • Trying not to drip water on the floor when you had to go in and use the bathroom (because the chlorine would ruin the carpet).

  • Her perfume (smelled like the "Musky Jasmine" scent from Love's perfume)

  • The candy dishes around the house with different candies in them.

  • Hated the squishy toilet when you came in from the pool, and your legs stuck to the seat. And it was always cold because of the A/C vent right above you.

  • Whitey used to swim with us.

  • Wanting to pop the "bubbles" on the pool cover (like BIG bubble wrap), and wanting to walk across it.

  • The park and waterfalls.

  • Playing the games that she kept in the hot, dark shed.

  • Swimming under the Chinese lanterns.

  • That statue of the little boy holding the lantern in the from of the yard (kept changing colors).

  • Grandmom taking me to Friendly's, and me throwing up all over the table, and her taking me home and giving me a blanket (I was traumatized from Friendly's for a while after that).

  • I remember seeing our Christmas presents behind a chair once...a few Sprites from Rainbow Brite and a Lurkey doll. When we opened them up the next morning, I was disappointed that all my sisters got Sprites and I got the Lurkey doll.

  • Being amazed at how tan she was.

  • Sitting at the bar and thinking it was cool (and grown-up).

  • Mike shattering one of the glass tables by putting the candy back on it too hard.

  • Trick-or-treating in the neighborhood and being terrified of the person next door (I think because of some scary movie inside, or some sort of decoration...or maybe it was the rubber mask with the axe through the head).

  • My (Kim's) bridal shower was held there.

  • Christmas mornings with the whole family. Super-long table in the living room, across from Grandpop's old record player.

  • Gladys Ogbin (04/06/1926 - 07/29/2010)

    Her obituary:
    Gladys M. Ogbin (nee Morris) age 84 years of Sewell died Thursday July 29, 2010 in Underwood Memorial Hospital, Woodbury. Mrs. Ogbin was born in Philadelphia, raised in Pennsville and lived in Oak Valley for many years. She worked as a Secretary at DuPont Repauno Works, Gibbstown and she was a member of the Oak Valley Athletic Association. Mrs. Ogbin enjoyed reading and traveling in her free time. She is survived by her beloved husband of 62 years, Robert Ogbin; her children, Robert G. and Debra Ogbin of Pittsgrove, Cynthia Ogbin of Sewell, Linda and Bud Rendfrey of Dunnellon, Florida, Michael and Lynne Ogbin of Logan Twp., Jeffrey and Nancy Ogbin of Oak Valley and Donald Ogbin of Oak Valley; 13 grandchildren and 7 great grandchildren. A Memorial Service will be held at a later date. Arrangements by McBride - Foley Funeral Home, Paulsboro. Contributions can be made in her memory to Shady Lane Recreation Department, P.O. Box 275, Clarksboro, NJ 08020 or South Jersey Animal Rescue, 129 Bell Avenue, Mt. Royal, NJ 08061. Memories can be shared at