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“I am, and always will be, a lighthouse keeper’s daughter. I had the good fortune to be born to a different kind of childhood. I didn’t recognize this fact back when I was small. I thought that everybody lived like we did on our little island of Cuttyhunk, Massachusetts, which in itself was a life apart…” Seamond Ponsart Roberts.
These words were spoken by my dear friend Seamond Roberts who just had this book published.
Seamond grew up here at West Chop lighthouse on Martha’s Vineyard – can you think of a more perfect spot to spend your childhood.
A couple of years ago I did a post about her called ‘Lighthouse Keeper’s Daughter’… CLICK HERE to read it.
My copy just came today and I haven’t read it yet but I have heard many of Seamond’s stories and they are delightful, riveting, heart breaking, touching and humorous… you’ll love it.
“EVERYDAY HEROES: The True Story Of A Lighthouse Family” (available on Amazon.com)
Come back and let me know how you liked it… better yet if you want to email Seamond contact me for her email address… she’d love to hear from you… she told me so
- by Joan -
Assorted dolls and stuffed animals enjoying State Beach.
Deb’s doll Buttons at in the front with the pink hat, at age 44 is the oldest. Buttons is one of the most beloved dolls I’ve ever known. She likes to wear hats but no shoes, and around her neck is an amethyst necklace and a gold necklace.
To the Button’s right is her constant side-kick Lucky. At age 36 he’s lost a little of his vibrant colors but not his love of life. Around his neck is a green scarf one of Deb’s first knitting attempts, and he also sports a real dog collar from our first dog.
To the right of Lucky is Molly, my American Girl Doll that I got when I was 55… a number of years ago
In the back row on the right is Cindy, she was adopted from the Secret Garden in Oak Bluffs 20 or so years ago. At her feet is a Black Dog pup and next to him are Ty, the bear from Boston, and Mittens a puppet dog with a hilarious sense of humor.
They say you’re never too old to have a second childhood and I say, you’re never too old to love and enjoy your childhood playmates – even if you got them during your second childhood
(PS – this is my 600th post)
My friend Will Jones and I were always looking for things to keep us busy and out of trouble during our summers on MV. Someone showed me how to make little flowers by using yarn and forks… I immediately showed Will. We set about our tasks, me at my house, he at his.
The next morning Will’s mom called my mom asking if he was at my house ? Seems she went looking for a fork and couldn’t find any !!! A few moment later Will was at my door, and yes, he had all his mother’s forks with him and they were filled with yarn. Seems I had neglected to show him how to get the yarn off the forks to make the little flowers…
Will had carried those forks from his house way on the other side of Oak Bluffs …
up Circuit Ave …
(Will’s mom – my mom)
Our moms were childhood friends, as were Will and I. Our moms graduated from Oak Bluffs High School together (long before the regional high school was built). Our moms moved to Newark, NJ after graduation and it was there that they met their future husbands, our dads, who were also childhood friends. ( In 1907 Will’s mom, Bertha Carter, was the first child born in Oak Bluffs after its name change from Cottage City.)
(my dad – Will’s dad)
Will and I spent every day of the summer together. We went swimming, rode the Flying Horses, read, drove our parents crazy and were inseparable. For many years his parents owned a bowling alley in Oak Bluffs across from the Flying Horses. Long before automation the pins had to be set by hand, I even did it from time to time myself.
Being a summer kid on the Vineyard was the best thing in the world… it still is.
Will is older than I am by 18 days and I never let him forget it. We still see each other from time to time and talk a lot about our childhoods on the Vineyard.
Dawn and Deb – July 18, 1984
Dawn and Deb – December 29, 2007
The trip was a new experience in so many ways. I had never gone away alone with two teenagers, so that was different. I had never driven to MV by myself, so that was different. What I discovered was, that I liked being different sometimes.
We did a lot of things together but the girls also spent time doing their own things while I did mine. It was a nice mix of togetherness and apartness (is that a word). We went to South Beach, to Aquinnah to see the cliffs, shopping, the girls rented bikes one day while I went to the kite festival in Oak Bluffs, we had great weather and we laughed a lot, which is not hard to do around Deb and Dawn.
One incident that sticks out in my mind is dinner one night at The Wharf Pub & Restaurant in Edgartown. We ate early and the restaurant was almost empty. We were in the middle of our meal when our waitress came over to us and said.. “you might want to eat slowly as Billy Joel and Christie Brinkley are on their way in and I thought the girls might get a kick out of seeing them.” GIRLS… forget the girls, I was the one getting all excited. So we nibbled and waited, and waited… and then THEY walked past the window next to our table and into the restaurant. We wondered if it would be possible to say hello to them (it wasn’t), but as we left the restaurant and walked past their table Billy Joel smiled and waved. We giggled all the way back to the hotel and then called home to share our exciting news.
Twenty seven years later Deb and Dawn are still best friends and they still laugh A LOT when they’re together. I’ll never forget that trip and know they haven’t either.
Happy milestone birthday wishes to my dearest friend …
In January 1960 I went to my senior prom and graduated from West Side high school !! Up until the January class of 1960 the schools in Newark, NJ had twice a year graduations, and no, I don’t know why. Another interesting thing was that junior high was 7th, 8th and 9th grades and high school was three years… 10th, 11th, and 12th grades ! I went to West Side for half of my junior year and all of my senior year. I loved it at West Side unlike the previous high school I went to which will remain nameless.
Our year book was The Lamp !!! I was an usherette for the graduating class before me. Was on the senior decorating committee. The play committee where we decided our play would be “Father Of The Bride”… however, we had to ‘borrow’ a guy from the junior class because none of the guys in our class wanted to be the father. How embarassing was that! I also belonged to the Dramateers, we did a show once where we painted our faces different pastel colors… it took about a week for me not to be purple around my hair line.
This is a picture of my homeroom. I’m glad I wore a pretty blouse as my shoulder is the only part of me showing…almost.
Friday, January 22nd was our senior prom, held at the Essex House Hotel in Newark. It was cold. The picture on the left is of me (blue gown) and my best friend Mary Ann. I’m still apologizing to her for stepping on, and ripping, the bottom ruffle of her gown. We’ve known each other since age 14 and continue to be best friends.
And so on the night of Wednesday, January 27th 1960 we graduated from high school. It was a chilly and damp January night outside. Inside it was filled with warmth and laughter, friends and family. And then we went our ways and in 1970 gathered for our 10 year reunion. It was fun but not great.
However, in 1992 we had a 32nd reunion and it was fantabulous. Yes, 32nd… no one knows why 32 and not 30 or 35… but no matter what the number it sure was fun and plans are in the works for a 50th this year.
Thanks to two terrific mutual friends, my daughter Deb and I not only got to meet Kate Taylor but got to hang out with her, her daughter Liz Witham and Liz’s husband Ken Wentworth, at Che’s, a coffeehouse in Vineyard Haven.
I’ve been told that to meet Kate is to instantly feel a connection to her. It’s true. It was as if we’d known each other a long time and were just picking up where we’d left off. Our mutual love of the Vineyard and the fact that we’d spent our childhood summers growing up there was the beginning of our easy conversation. Ironically our daughter’s are Twitter friends and were also meeting for the first time. Cyber space is so small sometimes.
We had a great time chatting, laughing, drinking coffee and tea, and spending a rainy afternoon together. Kate suggested that maybe Deb and I would like to join her and meander over to Midnight Farm to see what was going on there!! Midnight Farm has an eclectic collection of wares to delight your spirit, home and body and it was fun poking around with Kate and talking with owner Tamara Weiss.
I glanced at my watch, and much like Cinderella fearing the stroke of midnight, we feared over staying the time limit in the parking lot. Drat. And so we hugged and said good bye.
The next morning I heard from Kate again. We weren’t able to get together that day but we talked on the phone for awhile. We hope to see each other again when I’m on MV, I know we still have lots to talk about.
Here they are. A new batch of Espresso Love blueberry scones delivered to me by my new friend Kathryn.
Unwrapped and looking luscious.
I just happened to have an EL bag (or 2 or 3) so I put the scones in one for a photo. Then I separated them, four went in the freezer and two …
… were placed on dishes. I just had one with tea, the other is for my daughter Deb. My tastebuds are beside themselves with the joy of fresh blueberry scones.
Kathryn is a delight and we can’t wait to get together again. There’s definitely no lack of things to talk about with us, the Vineyard is of course top on the list of topics. Thank you Kathryn, thank you, thank you, thank you. Check out Kathryn’s blog ‘Thoughts Enroute’ by clicking here.