Thursday, December 20, 2012

I'm aware it may be true that the majority of those who read this blog don't like Obama.   But he does have good speech writers.   In the speech about the school shootings he quoted part of a line from Nature Boy - to teach your kids ". . . to love and be loved in return."   He also said parents may think of their kids as parts of their hearts runnin' around out there.   I never read or heard anything like that before, and I like it.  

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Friday, December 7, 2012

I thought maybe I had heard the last of the "small world" stories, but I was wrong.   Yesterday I happened to hear a woman at a nearby table mention some names of people and parts of the area I grew up in.   So I went over after eating, and we talked a few minutes.   I told her I knew Dan Stehle and Bob and George Murray.   I guess I didn 't say where I had lived.  Tonight when I went into the dining area, she motioned for me to come over.   She wanted to know my sisters names.   I told her, and this time mentioned Myers Avenue.   She said she used to get her hair fixed at a beauty shop on Myers Avenue.   Can you believe that?   She had been one of my mother's customers.   So it's possible that maybe I had been in the house sometime when she was getting her hair done.   Even if that coincidence never happened, I'm still amazed that my mother had fixed her hair.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

I was surprised this morning by a call from Mike, who said he wanted to call me on Mom's and my 69th wedding anniversary.    I told him, that at that point, I hadn't thought about it.   Maybe the reason was that I hadn't made a note on the little calender I use to remind me of all the other family birthdays and anniversaries.   My guess is that I would have remembered sometime before the day was over.   The day in Portsmouth in 1943 was much like it is here in Mansfield today - maybe a little warmer.   Mom told me later she was a little ticked off at me for not coming to see her during the morning.   I guess I had heard it was bad luck to see your bride-to-be the morning before the ceremony.   But she still said, "I do" when asked the important question.   I don't remember the last time December 1 might have meant anything to her.   It might have, even last year.   I just wasn't able to detect it.   Does it mean anything to her where she is now?    I believe so, but in a way those of us still on this earth will have to wait until we go there to fully understand.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Monday, November 19, 2012

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Here is a wonderful thought from the sympathy card we sent to Maureen that we all need to remember:
     "To carry on with a heart full of memories is to be wholly and lovingly  human.  To heal day by day is to build a bridge of love that will reach far beyond time into forever."

     It was a blessing to see all of you at Scott's funeral.  May our prayers be with Scott's children, grandchildren and Maureen to cope with life without their hero.

                                  God bless you all and thanks for being such a great family,

                                                     Eileen and John and family

Happy Veteran's Day

Thanks to all who have served and are serving now:  Dad, Michael Fox, Mike Murphy, Jr., Tara Murphy, and Nate Anding.  A special thanks to Scott and all veterans who have departed this life. We are grateful for your service to our country.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Some lines from Thanatopsis by William Cullen Bryant who wrote it when he was seventeen.

"Yet not to thine eternal resting-place
Shalt thou retire alone, nor couldst thou wish
Couch more magnificent. Thou shalt lie down
With patriarchs of the infant world - with kings,
The powerful of the earth - the wise, the good.
Fair forms, and hoary seers of ages past,
All in one mighty sepulcher. The hills
Rock-ribbed and ancient as the sun - the vales
Stretching in pensive quietness between;
The venerable woods - rivers that move
In majesty, and the complaining brooks
That make the meadows green; and, poured round all,
Old Ocean's gray and melancholy waste -
Are but the solemn decorations all
Of the great tomb of man."
". . . As the long train
Of ages glides away, the sons of men,
The youth in life's green spring, and he who goes
In the full strength of years, matron and maid,
The speechless babe, and the gray-headed man -
Shall one by one be gathered to thy side,
By those who in their turn shall follow them.
So live, that when thy summons comes to join
The innumerable caravan, which moves
To that mysterious realm, where each shall take
His chamber in the silent halls of death,
Thou go not, like the quarry-slave at night,
Scourged to his dungeon, but, sustained and soothed
By an unfaltering trust, approach thy grave,
Like one who wraps the drapery of his couch
About him, and lies down to pleasant dreams."

Friday, November 2, 2012


Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Friday, October 12, 2012

Steve drove me to the VA clinic on Wednesday.   I had an appointent with an optometrist and a social worker.   I was impressed by both people and the optical equipment.   One test was on an optic nerve measuring device I had never seen before.    He said if he hadn't already been informed of my history, and he was seeing me for the first time, the test results didn't indicate suspect glaucoma or the need for eye drops.   Ocular pressure was only 14 in both eyes.   He suggested that I come back in a month for other tests.    I had been asked to bring copies of my living will and durable power of attorney for health care to show the social worker.    We also talked about the grieving process, and again I was impressed by the competence of this woman.   I also picked up a shiny copper colored adjustable cane the nurse practitioner had ordered when I was there the last time.    I won't use it to go to meals, but will when I go out.    It also helps moving around here in the apartment.

Thursday, September 27, 2012


Remembering Mom's birthday.   This would have been her 91st.   Birthdays hadn't meant much to her for several years.   I doubt if she was even aware of them.   But I do remember one, when before I left for the night, I asked her if she had had a nice birthday.   She said, "Uh huh."   That may have been the last thing she ever said.    These days I really miss her.   Just had some new furniture delivered and know she would have liked this place.  

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Monday, September 3, 2012

Interesting day here at Primrose.  I met a man who worked at Mansfield Tire for a while when I was there. Another man delivered the mail to our house on Coleman Road.  At lunchtime a woman at another table recognized me as a former member of First Lutheran Church.   She said she had a church picture book I was in, and brought it to dinner for me to look at. It was printed in 1972.   Mom, Megan and I are in it.  Looking through it was like a trip down memory lane.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Thank you Steve and Johnny Topa for all your hard work getting Dad moved yesterday! And also to Mike and Sally for their help today and tomorrow. Steve and I will be there Sunday to help with whatever additional help you need, Dad. We're looking forward to seeing you and your new home!!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

There are times in the grieving process when the sense of loss hits by surprise.   One of those times came today as I was going through some old papers and found a sheet showing my name as a World War II honoree honored by  Margaret A. Murphy,   I had forgotten about that.   I don't know how or remember when she did it.   But she did, and seeing the record prompted one of those gulp-choke moments.   It also prompted me to see if I could find my name on the registry of honorees.   I did by Googling world war 2 memorial honorees, clicking on search the registry and entering my name and state.   I am listed there because Mom saw to it - never would have gotten around to it myself.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Today I was boxing stuff to move and ran across a book, The Treasure Chest, given by friends to my mother on her birthday in 1954.   I had bookmarked a page with the poem High Flight on it.   If you're not familiar with it, Google high flight poem to read it.   It's a favorite of Scott and I would assume of Nathan.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Sunday, July 8, 2012

St. Louis

We enjoyed meeting some of Luis' family in St. Louis the past few days. The top picture is on the Arch grounds, where we watched the fireworks.  Luis' sister Lily and mom Sophia are in front of Steve. Then there are two aunts, cousin Edgar, and Whitney's friend Ashley.
The next picture is basically a photo op for Luis' family to be able to get pictures with him in his cap and gown, since they weren't here for his graduation ceremony a couple weeks ago (he has one more term and will finish school in September, but DeVry only has one graduation ceremony per year).
Then I included the last picture because the office building Whitney works in is right behind the Budweiser scoreboard - pretty cool!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Monday, June 25, 2012

I don't know how many of you know about Steve's new book  "Self-evident Solutions for America."   A book reviewer says it "will appeal to Americans of all stripes who are frustrated with the lack of progress they see on key issues" . . . and . . . "offers several practical solutions . . ."
And I'm impressed because the book offers more statistics on more aspects of what's going on in this country than I've ever read in one place.   Well worth reading.  Available at Amazon in paperback and Kindle. 

Friday, June 22, 2012

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Monday, June 11, 2012

In case you wondered what Megan, Eileen and Steve looked like in 1965

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Megan gave me a picture of her, Eileen, Steve and Mom taken near the Washington Monument in 1965.   I thought the picture of Mom portrayed her in a such a nice way.  I was able to isolate her image and make myself an enlargement.   Don't think I can post the enlargement, but I'll try.  

Friday, June 1, 2012

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Saturday, May 26, 2012


Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Friday, May 18, 2012

Rebecca and/or Matthew,
Would you explain the reason for your visit to those who didn't know why you were here?   Of
course, I think the project is commendable.   Many, many stories of that nature never were told.   They should have been, and as time passes, opportunities for hearing more are dwindling. 
I succeeded once.   I'll try another.
Let's see if I can post a couple pictures.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Have I succeeded in sending a picture?
I commented that I didn't know how to post a picture here, but I have managed to do something nice with a picture.     Some of you may remember the one of Mom and me someone took at Kensington? I scanned it, cropped it (took me off) enlarged and printed it. The result is propped up on this table, so Mom is there, smiling at me all the time while I work at the computer. Can't quite describe how that affects me. The opening words to Josh Groban's "To Where You Are" come close. "Who can say for certain? Maybe you're still here. I feel you all around me, your memory so clear."
Picture from Steve, of Dad's birthday dinner.

Friday, April 27, 2012

You tube treat.   Google Robert Goulet last tv performance
You'll hear Sunrise, Sunset   and   If Ever I Should Leave You      Good stuff.   Josh Groban is good, but not as good as Robert was.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Thanks for the birthday greetings.   I had a mini-birthday party at dinner time.   The wife of one of the men who sits at the same table (she is there often at mealtime) brought some cup cakes.   She and others sang Happy Birthday.
Happy Birthday Dad.

Love, Maureen & Scott
Happy Birthday Dad! We love you!
Megan and Steve

Happy Birthday Dad!

Hope you have a happy birthday.
Sally & Mike

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Friday, April 20, 2012

I sent these pictures to Poppop and he asked me to put them on Truman's.  Hannah did a photo shoot for an agency in Nashville.  It is called the Icon series and, as is pretty obvious, she represented Lucille Ball.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Zero to Boston, Doin' it for Dad: Feeling the Love

Hi all, just got back from Boston.  Aside from the heat on race day, it was an amazing weekend. It was great to have Dad & Maureen up with me.  My legs feel alright at the moment, but they will feel like solid wood again when I wake up in the morning.  Just wanted to share my wrap-up post from the weekend:

Zero to Boston, Doin' it for Dad: Feeling the Love: Just got home after a whirlwind weekend.  I had a PW and a PR at the same time.  It was my slowest marathon ever 4:05, but that never bother...

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Easter Photo

We had the whole gang in for Easter and went to a photo studio. Here is one of the entire group.

Monday, April 9, 2012

I wonder if you read this account by Todd Richissin, Urbandale Patch Regional Editor for Iowa, writng about the day he brought Mike Wallace close to tears. He knew Mike had another son Peter who fell to his death in 1962 while mountain climbing at age 19.

"During our interview, with Chris at his side, Mike recounted how he hadn’t heard from Peter, who had been hiking around Europe, so he tracked down the youth hostel where he’d been staying. People there told him Peter had planned to climb a mountain near the Gulf of Corinth.So, Mike hired a guide and a donkey and found himself riding to the top of a cliff. I could see pain appearing on Mike Wallace's face as he recounted this story, and I could have interjected something, anything, to ease things for him just a bit, but I didn't. I'm not sorry for that. It helped me get to know him.“We sat down to catch our breath, and we’re sitting there like this,” Mike Wallace told me, hunched over, forearms on his knees. “I looked down, and about 150 feet down we saw somebody – and there he was.”

Quite a story.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Here's a link to Josh Grogan singing "To Where You Are". Katherine Jenkins danced to it on Dancing With The Stars Monday night in memory of her father.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Don't know how many of you I've told about a song I heard my father sing. Must have heard it more than once, because I remembered the words. Couldn't even guess how many times I sang it to Mom in the last few years - many, many times as I was leaving her side, morning, noon and night. Don't know why it never occurred to me to Google it. Probably thought it was too old. But I did today - just the three words, dear old girl, brought up two You Tube versions. One is by Jimmy Roselli. It's one of two "Saloon Songs", along with "Girl Of My Dreams". The other is a very old recording by Richard Jose and includes a long verse. I haven't been able to pick up all the words of the verse, but I'll keep trying.

Monday, April 2, 2012

I had read that Steve Martin had been playing the banjo. That seemed a little out of character. But last night on the country music awards show there he was, one of the banjo players with Rascal Flatts. No funny stuff - just straight playing. Sure something different for him. The singer of that group, by the way, is from Columbus. I wonder how he and Steve got together?

Sunday, April 1, 2012

I don't hear many jokes here at Summit's Trace, especially one liners. Here are a couple I saw in today's Dispatch:

"A termite walks into a bar and asks,"Is the bar tender here?"

"I am an archaeologist. My career lies in ruins."

Friday, March 30, 2012

Bob Jurgensen, an All Saints friend, forwards a lot of stuff to me. This one might be something Maureen will find intresting as she starts work on her new job.

The minister was preoccupied with thoughts of how he was going to ask the congregation to come up with more money than they were expecting for repairs to the church building. Therefore, he was annoyed to find that the regular organist was sick and a substitute had been brought in at
the last minute. The substitute wanted to know what to play. "Here's a copy of the service," he said impatiently. "But, you'll have to think of something to play after I make the announcement about the finances." During the service, the minister paused and said, "Brothers and Sisters, we are in great difficulty;the roof repairs cost twice as much as we expected and we need $4,000 more. Any of you who can pledge $100 or more, please stand up." At that moment, the substitute organist played "The Stars Spangled Banner." And that is how the substitute became the regular organist!
Yesterday I quoted Thomas Friedman, a New York Times writer. Today I repeat a comment by E. J. Dionne, Washington Post. "The individual mandate was a conservative idea that President Barack Obama adopted to preserve the private market in health insurance rather than move toward a government- financed single payer system. What he got back from conservatives was not gratitude but charges of socialism for adopting their own proposal. The irony is that if the court's conservatives overthrow the mandate, they will hasten the arrival of a more government-heavy system." Justice Kennedy even hinted that it might be more "honest" if government simply used "the tax power to raise revenue and to just have a national health service, single-payer." Dionne added: "Remember those words."
My view - chances are that something will be done about healthcare that's better than what we have now. I'm pretty sure there will never be a mandate to buy broccoli, cell phones, burial services or cars.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Thomas Friedman is one of my favorite columnists. He is on a trip to New Zealand and Australia, and had some intersting comments. Both countries, by the way, have single payer national health-care systems and New Zealand has compulsory voting. You get fined if you don't vote. Friedman writes, "Looking at America from here makes me feel as though we have the worst of all worlds now. The days when liberal Republicans and conservative Democrats nudged the two parties together, appear over . Special interest money is out of control. We've lost our ability to do big, hard things together. Yet everything we have to do - tax reform, fiscal reform, health care reform, energy policy - is big and can only be done together."
Nearing ninety-two, I won't live long enough to see it, but I wonder what will have to happen to make that change?

Monday, March 19, 2012

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Mike, Tara, and the kids were in Omaha this weekend to see Erica's show choir perform in a competition. We were so thrilled that they contacted us about meeting them for dinner tonight! We met them in Omaha and it was great catching up with them.
Dinner last Saturday at Bob Boyer's and Marge's. I made Mom's lasagne recipe!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

If you want a good laugh during the torrent of current and future political speeches, Google mad magazine political speech and click on Non-slanderous Political Smear Speech. I remember it from way back and was hoping I could find it. It's really clever. Writer Bill Garvin sure knew how to make favorable comments that could be considered otherwise by some with limited vocabularies.

Monday, March 5, 2012


Boston Marathon Fund Raiser

Andy is running the Boston Martathon to raise money for Dana Farber cancer research.

Here are links to his web site for the race and his blog.

You may have to copy the URLs and paste into your browser.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

A picture of my first duty station is at the link below. I finished at Columbia University but was back on board with Mom for the graduation dance on the main deck of the old ship.
I did something new today. Googled robert truman murphy and found an entry Mansfield High School Manhigan Yearbook. My name was there and a list of my activities: Class VP etc. The link takes you to some yearbook covers. Click on Class of 1938 to get a list of pages. Go to page 27 to see the four class officers and page 30 to see my picture. I tried the same for Mom, but couldn't find a similar entry.

Monday, February 13, 2012

A chair from the past

Grandpa, I was wondering if you recognized this chair, minus the pillow of course :)
We took it from my parents basement a year ago, recently refinished it and now it is the chair I sit in every night when I put the girls to bed.
Mom just recently told me whose chair it used to be, and I was delighted to have a piece of history in our home, so I thought I would share a picture of it as it is now!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Saturday, February 4, 2012

I copied the Van Dyke poem off the net and it posted the way you see it, not the way it was printed. But all the words are there. Nice imagery, don't you think?
Gone From My Sightby Henry Van Dyke
I am standing upon the seashore.
A ship, at my side,spreads her white sails to
the moving breeze and starts for the blue ocean.
She is an object of beauty and strength.
I stand and watch her until, at length, she
hangs like a speck of white cloud just where
the sea and sky come to mingle with each other.
Then, someone at my side says, "There, she is gone".
Gone where? Gone from my sight. That is all.
She is just as large in mast,hull and spar as she was
when she left my side.
And, she is just as able to bear her load of living
freight to her destined port.
Her diminished size is in me -- not in her.
And, just at the moment when someone says,
"There, she is gone," there are other eyes
watching her coming, and other voices ready to take
up the glad shout, "Here she comes!"
And that is dying.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Alzheimers Foundation of America Winning video

You all know this by now but Hannah submitted a video in November to this foundation and just found out she won the grand prize. We are very proud of her but mostly thankful she honored Mawmaw and Poppop in such a beautiful way!!

Monday, January 30, 2012

The latest posting is now on The type size is bigger and the way to access various pages is across the top and not on the left side of the page. So you click on Read more after 1963 to read the latest addition. It wasn't easy to write.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Wasn't sure I wanted to post this or not. But I found myself remembering the tune and the words, so thought I'd pass it along. It was written for a different kind of mourning, but the message is fitting. Frank helped write it, by the way. The recording sounds like it was made during a period when his voice wasn't as good as it was before or since.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

I had sent an email to Marnie Gardner Chistiansen that included:

"I wanted you know about her death, because without your suggestion that I ask
her for a date, the connection may not have been made that resulted in 68 years
of love and companionship with a wonderful woman and a family of five children,
fourteen grandchildren and 23 great grandchildren. So I owe you a debt of
gratitude that's beyond measure."

Marnie's daughters, Karen, Peggy and Sally have responded telling me that their mother had died in May of last year. Marnie and I had exchanged a couple emails and I had sent her some pictures. I had not heard back from her. Now I understand why.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Friday, January 13, 2012

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Walking Her Home

Grandpa, this song has always reminded me of you and Grandma; now I think it is particularly significant. You may have heard the song before or you may have not, but I thought it would be meaningful nonetheless. I was restricted to the few pictures I could find of you the other pictures are just fillers, as this story could be many others as well.
We love you both very much and are praying for you.
Leigh, Jonathan, Felicity & Adelaide.