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Wednesday, December 25, 2013


Wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas today. And sending apologies for not being prompt in being here for you: First it was illnesses and then my computer is on the blink.
I will promise to do better for I owe it to you.
Again, Merry Christmas!

Sherry Hill

*Photo from a free online source

Monday, November 11, 2013


We are expecting snow here tomorrow and the thought of it unnerves me. Used not to at all for in fact I loved it and always looked forward to a "snow day" as I was a teacher. Since I'm not teaching anymore, I have developed a love-hate relationship with snow. Love it when I have food and the necessities in my house. Hate it when I'm caught off guard and am out of things I desperately need. And you are probably asking why: The reason is that I live on top of a huge mountain. 

If it snows a lot and it's cold, there is more snow up here than down on the flat part--like a lot more. The main hill can resemble a ski path and often people really did ski off the main hill. It gets covered with ice and I'm pretty sure that the men that run the snow plows don't care for going down it at all.  I've seen them literally back up at the hill and go up the street. I would too if I were in that snow plow.

And so I will pace back and forth tonight to see if the weather forecasters are right. When "they" say a few flakes, it is more like several inches of snow. Just great if I were brave like I used to be but I am not brave any more nor do I have a desire to go sideways down the hill. Been there and did  that and actually lived through it.

You can guess what I'll doing tonight: Pacing. Do I have to go to work? No. It's the feeling of being trapped inside that gets to me. "Let it snow?" No. Rest my case.

Sherry Hill

Friday, November 8, 2013


When I was little, I really thought that real cats and dogs would fall down from the sky if people said "It's raining cats and dogs." Didn't take me long to understand that it was a saying because I never saw any fall from the sky. Yesterday it rained so hard that the few remaining leaves that were hanging on the trees for dear life fell off. My yard and the street are both entirely covered in yucky brown wet leaves. And those leaves can be dangerous for if you walk in them or drive in them, they're as slick as glass.

It looks like every leaf in the world decided to land in my yard. It's a sea of brown yuck.

Today you might assume would be a good day to rake leaves for it isn't going to rain. But there is a catch: It's freezing right now and the day temperatures are not high. And so I will stare at the mess of wet leaves and hopefully not slide in them. Yesterday I'd say it was really raining leaves for that is what flew all over the place with the huge raindrops.

It was not a good day but then it could have been far worse and at least I stayed inside safe and dry. If you live in an area such as I do with seasons, you know full well what I'm talking about. No cats or dogs rained from the sky--just the last remaining brown leaves.  The saying is funny in a way for little kids actually believe it will happen. I used to.

Sherry Hill

Thursday, October 24, 2013


Starting today through the next two days, one of my Amazon Kindle E books will be free for three days.
If you were a child of the 50's, I hope this short book will bring back some happy memories.
You don't have to have a Kindle. Amazon.com has a free Kindle app that you can download to your computer.
Hope you enjoy this stroll down memory lane.
Sherry Hill


Thursday, October 10, 2013


Fall is my favorite time of the year but then a lot of you already knew that fact. To me it’s a sensory overload but in this case it’s a good one. I love the smell of fall, the feel of it, the colors and the remnants that abound as well as the azure blue skies.

Here in West Virginia we are blessed with a glorious fall every year. The mountains sing with vivid colors—they are so vivid that it is breathtaking. Every single color and hue is there and it looks like God has taken His paint brush and splattered colors everywhere. There is no other way to explain it other than that. It’s miraculous time after time.

If you live in an area where you don’t have fall, I feel sorry for you are missing the most colorful season of the year. If you google “Fall in West Virginia” you will see the astounding colors I’m talking about. But I can’t describe the smell of fall, nor the feel of it other than it makes me delirious when I am outside taking in its glory. I wish I could describe it to those of you that have never experienced this season.

But if you have fall, you know what I’m talking about: It is a glorious season that is so full of sensory overload but it’s too brief! “Gather ye colored leaves while ye may” for winter looms ahead. Meanwhile, go out and enjoy each day of this short time of the year. Immerse yourself in its glory. I certainly do.

Sherry Hill

Copyright © 2013
Sherry Hill

All Rights Reserved

Thursday, September 26, 2013


Nellie was a friend of my grandmothers and lived about two blocks away from her. The first time I ever saw Nellie I was shocked because she could hardly walk.  I was all of  six years old and just assumed that Nellie had a husband. Remember asking my grandmother if she did and was told this story:

"Nellie had a husband" my grandmother said. "He was a nice man until he did something really bad." "Really bad?" I asked her. "Really bad." Being six years old I only knew some bad things and wasn't prepared for what would come next. " What did he do?" I pleaded with her. "Well it went like this. Nellie's husband told her that he wanted to drive to California and did she want to go with him. Of course she wanted to go. But the bad part was that Nellie's husband had also asked Nellie's best female friend to go along with them." "That sounds okay to me" I told her. "It wasn't an okay thing. When Nellie had packed their clothes and got in the car, her husband made her sit in the back seat. And Nellie's friend sat up front with her husband" replied my grandmother.  I had no idea why that was a bad thing at all. There was nothing in my six-year old mind to comprehend it at all.

"Did they make it to California?" I asked. "Did they! Why when they got there, Nellie's husband took off with Nellie's best friend and left her stranded there alone." "Alone?" I asked. "Alone." "How did she get home?" I quizzed her. "She had to take an airplane back here all by herself."

I shoved this story about Nellie in the back of my mind. It didn't make any sense to me at all at that time.

My grandmother always talked to me like I was twenty which was a good thing and yet kind of rough to understand what she was telling me at times.

By the time I was eleven, I understood what had happened to poor Nellie. She had been abandoned by her husband and cast aside for another woman. Since Nellie lived alone,  I again asked my grandmother what happened to him. "Nellie never saw him again in her entire life. He just up and vanished with that woman."

I knew full well the moral of this story: Never let your husband ask your best female friend to go along on a long car trip and NEVER be forced to sit in the back seat of the car or you'll wind up like Nellie did. Alone.

Whenever I saw Nellie, I felt nothing but pity for her. By the time I was fourteen, she passed away taking her grief along with her. Guess a lot of you would say "Why did she let her husband  force her to sit in the back seat in the first place?" That is my reaction as well to this entire short story. If it had been me, heck if I would have in the first place! 

Sherry Hill
Copyright © 2013
Sherry Hill

All Rights Reserved


I apologize to all of you for not being here to post. The writing book fever has overwhelmed me. But it's such a joy to see your book online that once you do it, you want to do more.
Attaching a link to my latest downloadable Amazon Kindle E book.
Thanks so much!

Sherry Hill

Tuesday, September 24, 2013


The other day I was talking to a writer friend of mine and somehow we got on a discussion of how our mothers held our hands. Neither of our mothers held our hands in a loving way. Odd isn’t it? And even odder is that both of us are only children whose mothers have long since died. I told her “My mother had a death grip on my hand and would jerk it over to her if I did anything wrong.” Were any words spoken? Absolutely none.  She replied “My mother did the very same thing!” Silence for a few moments before we resumed talking about how our mothers held our hands. “My mother squeezed my hand so much that it hurt” I told her. “Same here” she retorted.

This led to a discussion of why they did that in the first place. Neither of us were bad children that did horrid things. “I’ve often wondered that myself” said my friend. “Tell me about it” I winced. Then I asked her how her father held her hand. “Did he squeeze your hand like your mother? Because my dad didn’t.” I got a reply of “No, he was gentle when he held my hand.” I completely understood that one as well. Our fathers held our hands as if to guide us or to soothe us and no way like out mothers. None.

Of course this led to a further discussion about how our grandparents held our hands and again, they didn’t squeeze our hands until they hurt. They did squeeze our hands at times and that was a sign of love.

Holding hands with a man you’re in love with has a completely different meaning and feeling. “You can feel the static running through your hand to his” I told my friend. “Of course you can” she said. I went on to say that holding a man’s hand that you are in love with can also offer solace, comfort or a guiding feeling. She agreed.

I told her of holding my sons’ hands when they were little. It was a wonderful feeling to hold those chubby little hands and know that what you held was a part of yourself. Unlike my mother, I never squeezed their hands until the hurt but there were times when I held onto their hands firmly. I didn’t want them to get hurt or run away into traffic. “Did you ever jerk your child’s hand over to you?” I asked her. “Naturally I did if there were some threatening danger near.” “I understand completely” was my reply.

And so I will leave you with these thoughts to ponder. If you were an only child or maybe had siblings, did your mother squeeze the daylights out of your hand and pull you over to her? To me it was a sign of “You’re not going to do that young lady!” without a word spoken.

Holding hands say a lot, without any words spoken at all, but all of us know the full meaning regardless as to whom is holding ours. It’s learned and once learned, you never forget it ever—the good, the bad and the ugly way your hand is held.

Sherry Hill

Copyright © 2013
Sherry Hill

All Rights Reserved

Monday, September 23, 2013


Holy cow. Everywhere I look whether it’s on television, on a social media site, in a magazine or in a commercial, there is granite. Granite has to be used for kitchen counter tops. Granite has to be in all of the bathrooms from floor to ceiling. Nothing else will do. Why it’s socially unacceptable now. Do I have granite counter tops? No, I don’t because my kitchen was remodeled and finished in 2000. Do I have granite all over my bathrooms? Another no. And so let’s stop and think about granite: It is beautiful, costly and shiny. But have you ever stepped on wet granite? It’s as slick as ice. But that doesn’t matter to the twenty-somethings or the thirty-somethings. They want what everyone else has and that’s a normal reaction. If I were that age, I’d want it too in my house.

But I don’t have it and aside from that, couldn’t afford it now. Would I want all of my bathrooms encased in granite? No way, because I would slip and fall and wind up in the hospital. I have a ceramic floor in my foyer and it’s black and white. Beautiful. But if I’ve been outside during rain or snow and come in, it’s as slick as glass. Yes, I did fall once in the foyer. Ceramic tile can be both beautiful and dangerous. And I’d say the same for granite.

As for granite counter tops, they are beautiful.  But what if you were on a ladder and had to stand on a counter top? Remember they’re slick. I know the answer to that one for me: If it were the least bit wet, I’d fall. Rest assured on that one for I am also accident-prone big time.

With all the hubbub of having to have granite everywhere in your house, it makes those of us that don’t have it feel inferior or that our houses are out of date due to no granite. But then that is the main selling point of having it in the first place. When I was little and onward into my young adult years, the only granite I knew about was what tombstones were made of. Tombstones still are made of granite but perhaps you already knew that. I can’t help but correlate that fact to having it all over a house—it’s kind of creepy if you are of my generation.

Yes, we are all being taken for granite. But I am not one of them that will succumb to it just because every kitchen or bathroom has to have it. I rest my case. Oh by the way, when one dies, granite will definitely be there and to me, that’s quite enough.

Sherry Hill
Copyright © 2013
Sherry Hill

All Rights Reserved

Wednesday, September 18, 2013


Apologize again for not being on here. A couple of weeks ago, I took a leap of faith and published one E book. Perhaps I wrote about it. After that one book, I found out some crucial information that I didn't know prior to publishing that book and so a sequel had to be written.

I swear that the entire time I was working on the second book, it seemed like I was in some kind of writing coma. Tried to lie down and what would happen? Words entered my mind as well as thoughts. So much sleeplessness for those words and thoughts had to be written for fear I'd lose them.

After finishing those two books, I was like someone compelled to write and write. And I did. Some nights no dinner was had at all. Completely immersed into writing. Thank heavens for iced tea and coffee or I would have fallen asleep on my computer's keyboard. In actuality, I was wired to the max.

At this point, I have now published six E books on Amazon Kindle for download with one of them in the process of being published by the Kindle team.

Think I'm quitting? No. I'm now working on an E book about an ancestor of mine that was murdered during the Civil War. He was not a soldier. He was a victim. So far, what I have written is long word-wise and I am only to the point where he is twenty two. Luckily, I have many pages of typed genealogy as well as handed down stories about him. But this is no easy task as real history has to be involved and it requires much research. Can't make up true facts.

I promise to be on here more and post some humorous things. Thanks for being with me in my new found journey--it may be short or long-lived. Who knows?

Sherry Hill

Wednesday, September 11, 2013


You know how it is when you have things on your mind that you want to do and somehow they get put on the back burner. Well this morning in the wee hours, I decided to publish two more books through Amazon Kindle E books.

They were both stories that I felt needed to be told but then and again, isn't that what all writers feel?

When I submitted and published my first Kindle E book, I had a friend on the phone to guide me through the process. Helped. Worked.

But this time it was 4 a.m. and my friend was definitely asleep so I ventured out on my own to attempt to publish those two books for download. For one cover, I used Amazon's Kindle template maker. After I published it, I wish I had something else on the cover. It wasn't that it looked bad for I had chosen it. But I foresee  a redo as I want something else. It will happen.

So many stories are in my head as soon as I think of one, along comes a brand new one in my mind. And I have to write it down and save it for fear of losing it.

Then comes along an idea for a painting and my brain switches to that. It's not easy having both of these things on my mind all of the time but that's the way it is.  And I have to deal with it. Maybe you are like me and have those two creative things fighting in your brain to see which will surface first.

Aside from the above, on Saturday morning I left here at 8:30 a.m. with my camera and was all over the area where I live and did live as a child. Took about thirty pictures. Why did I do it? I did it because I have said I would to myself forever. And that task was finally done. It was a joy to do it for not only did I want to share those pictures but it was another one of those hidden goals of mine.

All I can say is that since Saturday I have been a woman on a mission!
Oh and yes I am working on a long book but guess where it is? It's on the back burner of course. At least I've accomplished three things in a matter of days and they were things I wanted to do. As for housework? Hmm
That will happen too. In time.

Meanwhile it's "Gather ye rosebuds while ye may." Lots of rosebuds.

Sherry Hill

Monday, September 9, 2013


About two hours ago, I was on the phone with a writer friend of mine and we were discussing book titles. Of course it was in the wee hours of the morning as usual and I had a headache. While on the phone with her, I decided to go over to the kitchen counter and get an Aspirin. Phone was held to my ear and I somehow managed to hit a tall wicker bookshelf and 40 colored pencils fell out of the tin and onto the floor. I slid. My dog ran over immediately to try to grab any he could find to chew on. 

Was desperate in grabbing up those pencils and still had the phone up to my ear. My friend said “Are you okay?” Explained what had happened but then I somehow lunged into the stove while reaching for that Aspirin. All of this happened within a mere three minutes or so but what a disaster. Not only did I whack my right arm but had to explain to my friend the other noise she heard. That noise was the sound of canned food hitting the floor! No, I hadn't put those cans up yet.

 And the way I feel right now, those cans will stay there at least for today. I am always in a hurry and so similar to Pauline who had too many perils. Oh one thing: Picking up 40 colored pencils off the floor before your dog grabs them is not an easy feat at all. I didn't want him to get a hold of any and get sick chewing on them but I had no idea I could grab that many so fast. And I did eventually get that Aspirin; in fact, I took two of them. Whoa what a night.

Sherry Hill

Friday, September 6, 2013


Several years ago in my second grade classroom, my students and I were doing a unit about fairy tales. I asked them to list things about The Wizard of Oz on a long piece of paper which they did. Then I took their list and wrote it on a transparency for the overhead. It was funny when I asked “How many flying monkeys were there?” and one boy replied “Too many!” I had to agree. They even frightened me.

The more things they listed, the more I wrote and then it occurred to me that The Wizard of Oz was exactly like the movie Star Wars. Different places of destination, a girl in trouble, three strange looking friends—think The Lion, The Scarecrow and The Tin Man. And then think R2D2, 3CPO and Chewbacca, frightening things after each such as the flying monkeys or the storm troopers:  So similar.

The girl in trouble and/or peril was Dorothy and Princess Leia. Dorothy’s destination was home here on earth while Princess Leia’s was her planet in outer space.

The yellow brick road was one that Dorothy and her friends traveled while Princess Leia’s road was a trip in outer space.

The villain in The Wizard of Oz was the witch while the villain in Star Wars was Darth Vader. Both wore dark clothes. Both had backups with the witch’s flying monkeys and Darth Vader with his storm troopers. And the monkeys and the troopers had distinct uniforms. Unforgettable uniforms.

The life saver in The Wizard of Oz was of course the wizard while the life saver in Star Wars was Luke Skywalker.

This list could go on and on with similarities between the two movies. No offense to George Lucas who produced Star Wars. It was brilliant when it first came out and remains so to this day. But I can’t help but think that he used a lot of The Wizard of Oz’s theme. Just too coincidental.

Sherry Hill


I apologize to your readers for not being a good blogger of late. About a month ago, I got inspired to take a story I had written--it was a narrative and turn it into a book.

Dialogue was put in which took me for what seemed like forever. When I'd go to sleep at night, I dreamed about that book. The more I dreamed, the more I wanted to publish it. And so I took a 2,000 word story and turned it into a 15,000 word book.

No, not a long book but one that is about a true haunting that not only did others witness but so did I.

You see fireworks because that's how excited I am to have published my first  book!

And should you not have an Amazon Kindle, you can download a free app to your computer. How amazing.

Thank you for your patience. Trust me, I have many more blog posts to write.

Sherry Hill

Tuesday, August 6, 2013


Right now in my state, tomatoes are out in full force. They're huge, available and taste real--not like the kind you buy at the store in winter. I'll admit it: I am a tomato addict. Could probably eat one every day or something made with tomatoes. And usually I do. 

But there is a downside to eating too many tomatoes. You can get canker sores on your mouth as I found out and those are not fun in any way, shape or form. So what to do? Abstain from tomatoes for several days or meals that are made with them and no more canker sores.

I read that taking a multiple vitamin every day aids in not getting canker sores. It does because I tried it and do it now every day.

The good side of tomatoes is too long to list! Oh there is nothing like eating fried green tomatoes--they make your mouth pucker. That's how great they are. And then there is a BLT and of course it has to have tomatoes on it or it's not any good. The forever lover of spaghetti here or any Italian dish that requires tomatoes as an ingredient is always at the top of my list. 

When I was little, I'd eat a sliced tomato sandwich with mayonnaise on it and salt. It was heaven. Still is if you get a great tomato. And what would a salad be without tomatoes in it? Blah that's what it would be.

I hope wherever you live that you are enjoying fresh tomatoes while you can for there is nothing as great as a ripe fresh one--or make that a basket full of them. They're full of vitamins, are good for you and can be eaten as is with little or no prep time. Just don't eat a lot every day. There's that payback remember?

Sherry Hill


I can honestly say that yes I miss the start of school.  The feeling is innate and how can it not be? Thirty five years of my life was spent teaching. Dreams come to me that I should be at school, can’t find my things and then wake up—or are those nightmares? Either nightmares or the true knowing that I gave away almost all of my personal teaching things.  And they aren’t here.

Oh trust me, I’ve seen the back to school supplies in stores and feel an urge to load up the shopping cart and realize No I don’t have to do that any more . And so to satisfy that feeling I buy a big package of Sharpies in every color: That is at least something that I can use.

I don’t miss the never ending putting up new supplies, numbering boxes of crayons, sharpening a thousand pencils, stamping the school name in brand new text books and putting up new bulletin boards. That routine went on for almost two weeks every single year before school started. What I do miss are the fresh faces of kids who were so ready to learn.

That first day is forever etched in my memory. Most of my teaching career was spent in the second grade. Imagine young kids that had just left first grade and having to hear what all they would be doing throughout the year. They just sat there and gasped. Every time. I’d go over the classroom rules, homework expectations, trips and the like and I’d see faces either in shock or wonderment. And it never failed that by nine o’clock, a child would ask “Is it lunch time yet?” I’d reply “In two hours it will be.” “Two hours?” moaned more than one child. Actually it was probably the entire class. Within half an hour another child would ask “Is it time to go home?” My answer was not pleasant as it resounded around the room. “No. Not for a couple of hours.” “Hours?” I heard. “Yes, trust me it’s hours before you go home.” A giant hush fell over the classroom or maybe it was a giant feeling of defeat on the children’s part. Stuck there for hours is an eternity for young children.

In all honesty, I never got any sleep before the first day of school and that was every single year. I was excited just as much as the children were or maybe more so. Time had been spent in the room prior as I wrote but not for them—it was going to be all new. That first day was a true joy and once it ended, it seemed as if I had never left for summer vacation. Come the next school day and it seemed as if we had been together forever.

So many memories of past first days of school loom in my mind. The fresh young faces of eager children, shy ones and those who were in a state of shock are still remembered by me. Each and every one of them has not been forgotten. Trust me that this coming Friday, August 9 will be a day that I will wake up early, feel that I should be at school and miss it. After all, how can you not miss doing something that you loved?

It’s a hard habit to shake. And no doubt it will go on forever with me—that feeling “I should be there.” My heart will be there with the new teachers and new children wishing that they have a successful year and get through that first day. Know they will. Just wait for those questions about lunch and going home. It’s inevitable. And it has always brought a smile to my face. Still does.

Sherry Hill

Monday, July 15, 2013


About a month ago, I returned to St. Albans, WV to  see the house where my parents and I lived for five years. While driving up the steep hill, I recognized every single house where my friends used to live. Looked basically the same. But when I reached the very top of the hill, I was shocked at the houses that I had spent so much time in. None of the yards looked the same at all. Our former house had to be the worst looking one and I got out and stood there in shock. The grass had to be at least two feet tall. The house itself that had been glorious when we lived in it, looked like “The Gingerbread Man’s house” gone wrong. Hideous paint job. Terrible yard.

Talked to a man that was next door using a weed eater. Told him I had lived there. He said that it had been empty for three years and yes, it was a mess. Asked him if he thought I could go out and see the huge back yard that we had at our old house. His reply was ‘You don’t want to go out there.” Uh huh. Didn’t.

I gazed around at all of the houses that surrounded our old house and was stupified to see that every single one had a porch where a cement stoop had been. Every house had “curb appeal” and mulch with flowers and cement surrounds abounded in those yards. And I thought There was no way it looked like this when I was nine years old. Everyone just had a plain yard. No flowers. No mulch.

Then I remembered my dad cutting grass every week in the summer with a push lawn mower.  No shrubbery to trim. No mulch to replace or repair. No front yard flowers. Flowers were in the backyard and they were perennials that required no maintenance whatsoever. And absolutely no curb appeal. But you know what was the best? Kids and I played games in my yard and had an inflatable pool in the backyard when it was summer. My dad even built a horseshoe pit and oh how I remember being taught how to play horseshoes by him.

Did I have to be careful in that huge backyard? No. There was nothing that would be hurt and thus, no parental screaming. That yard seemed endless. Front yard was smaller but still left enough room for adults to sit in lawn chairs or for kids to play. Other than my dad and other dads having to rake leaves or shovel snow, there was no yard maintenance. No flower beds to tend. No dragging in large rocks for whatever reason. Simple. Easy.

Then I thought back to my grandparent’s yard. Front yard had two trees and shrubs near the sidewalk. That was it. Backyard had perennials such a sweet pea, hollyhocks, roses and lilacs that needed no care. The grass had to be cut there as well as out front but my grandfather had some man do it. No flower beds. No mulch. No curb appeal. It was then that I remembered all of the places my parents and I lived for short periods and it was the same—only grass cutting, raking leaves or shoveling snow.

As a young married adult, my then-husband and I rented two places where the grass was cut for us. First house we owned seemed similar to my grandparent’s  for the front yard had two trees and shrubs. Backyard had perennials and a big yard. The same maintenance I mentioned above was the same at that house. Six years later we would move to the house in which I still live. Basically the same yard setup only the front yard was and is the biggest.  There were lots of shrubs, perennials and not much yard work needed done. I will never forget buying two window boxes one summer and filling them with dirt and flowers. Had them on two window sills. When my mom came up and saw those two flower boxes, she went on a rampage. “No one has flowers out front! They belong out back!” She was right for those flower boxes were taken down and put out in the backyard.

Forward in time and what has our society become? It has become one of putting every single thing one can think of in the front yard making the work so much harder. And curb appeal? Yep, have to have that. Mulch, flower beds, rocks here and there and all of this requires constant care. Perennials? Not much. The “in thing” of plants and flowers has to be used to make a statement. And why? I can tell you why and that is that people have been brainwashed to think that this is the norm. It sure wasn’t before. Didn’t take that long for someone to cut grass and trim shrubbery plus there were no weed eaters then nor leaf blowers. All of this hard work has been foisted upon us when in essence, it’s not necessary. To this day, I’d still rather have a plain yard with a backyard with perennials in it.  Nope. Yards are sure not what they used to be at all. Yards should just be yards.

Sherry Hill


If you live in a state or a country such as I do, we are bombarded by humidity in the summer and high temperatures.  High temperatures are bad enough but throw in humidity and it feels awful outside. This entire week here is going to be a scorcher and I plan on going out in the early mornings because by mid-afternoon, it's beyond terrible. Fry an egg on the sidewalk? No doubt.

Please be sure to drink lots of water or fluids and wear light colored clothing. High heat can be dangerous to humans, wildlife and pets as well.

If you are out and about in high heat, be safe!

                                                 Sherry Hill

Monday, June 24, 2013


When I saw his picture on our town's shelter site on facebook, I knew he was the dog for me! The first picture showed him looking really tan but his eyes got to me right off the bat. The next day, he had been given a bath and was pure white. I just had to have him and he was going to be put up for adoption the very next day.

Bet your boots that I was there early and got him. Actually a friend bought him for me as I had lost my other dog to death about seven months prior and she said that she wanted to do this for me. What a wonderful thing for her to do.

When we got home, he was so timid at first but sweet as sweet could be. My cat Maysie Apple didn't think so and she still doesn't:: In fact, she's still ticked off big time. You see, she ruled my other dog and that dog was afraid of her. Rufus is not. He wants to play with her and she will have no part of him.

I can't imagine anyone not searching for Rufus; he had come in as a stray. Of course, I can't imagine how anyone with a heart could not search for their missing pet online or just drop one off because they decided that either they didn't want it or state that they couldn't take care of it. Animals are not disposable.In today's society it seems to be the norm and that is disgusting.

If you are looking for a pet and see a shelter's site, look at the dog or cat's eyes: They speak great volumes.Rufus' sure did and I was so right in choosing him. And even better was the fact that he was already housebroken and friendly. What more could you ask for?

Sherry Hill

Wednesday, June 19, 2013


There were times when food actually came right to your front door and I’m not talking back in the time of Ben Franklin either. When I was little, my mom and I lived with my grandparents and their house was on a main street here in Charleston, WV. It was a thing of wonder to see a truck pull up into the driveway at their house and see a man get out and open up the back of it—the wonders of every kind of bakery item you could imagine was right there! That truck belonged to Blubaugh Bakery which was located downtown; they had many truck drivers on lots of routes. To me, it was heaven to see all of those pastries. And my grandmother would select what was needed and the truck would come back the next week—bringing delight all over again.

But that was not the only thing that came to the house. Every week a man pulling a vegetable cart would stop in front of the house. All of the neighbors would flock to this cart and pick out fresh produce; there was nothing wrong with it at all. It was all perfectly chosen and fresh. My favorite was tomatoes and to this day, guess it still is. Oh the joys of eating a tomato sandwich with just mayonnaise and salt and pepper was one of my childhood joys.

Another truck that came to the house weekly was The Jewel Tea truck. The driver would get out and open up the back to wonders upon wonders of things for house cleaning, things like beautiful teapots, dishes, aluminum glasses in every color of the rainbow, window cleaning liquid in a tin jar, furniture polish and you name it was in that truck. I was tempted som nay times to get in there with that man and just stay and look till I could look no more.

Another truck that came by weekly was a man that delivered fresh eggs and butter. To this day, I can still picture that man: He was old [probably in his forties but to a kid?,] wore a wrinkled white shirt and had on suspenders. He always seemed to be burning up and come to think of it, it was summer and he probably had hundreds of people on his route. This man was friends with my grandparents and I well remember my grandmother inviting him inside the house to get a glass of ice cold water. He needed it. As for the eggs and butter, they were top notch and always fresh—not like in today’s world.

The milkman would drop off bottles of cold milk every morning and he didn't have to travel far for the dairy was located a block over from my grandparent's house. All you had to do was to go outside, pick them up and bring them in the house. 

Perhaps my favorite truck that came to my grandparent’s house and the neighborhood was the ice cream truck. What a wonder to see a man all dressed in white riding a bicycle of sorts with a big white box on the back. When he stopped, he would open up the white box and white smoke would fill the air. It was dry ice but as a kid, I had no idea what it was. It was mysterious. The ice cream, popsicles and other dairy treats were grabbed by every kid that stood around this man and his strange vehicle. Of course, grandparents or parents had the say so as to what was bought. I’m pretty sure that what I got didn’t survive to the front door as I had eaten it.

The last truck that came by weekly was one driven by a man that sold potato chips in huge metal containers. Oh my, those chips were fresh, crunchy and the metal container was taken into my grandparents’ house about every week. The tins were saved for storage of whatever but the chips certainly weren’t saved.

I miss these things of the past that will never be again. Mass grocery stores took over the jobs that these men had although there were grocery stores then trust me. It was a wonderful time in which to be a kid and no doubt to be an adult with such service right at the front door or driveway. No one ever got sick from eating the fresh produce or eggs as they do in today’s world with mass production and contamination. And when I think of the dinners that my grandmother cooked with all of these fresh vegetables, butter and eggs I am taken back to a wonderful time when real was real. As for the Jewel Tea man, I suppose he saw my wonderment when he opened the back of that truck.

Still have a Jewel Tea pitcher that my grandmother had bought: The pattern is Autumn Leaf. Saw a bunch of these dishes and a teapot at a garage sale but passed upon buying them. One reminder is fine for me of a blessed past when food and needed things came to houses. There was no crime then which was another factor that led to the downfall of such splendid home service. It’s such a shame that today’s generation knows nothing about what I wrote about—they’d think I was making it all up. But I wasn’t at all. It happened and it was miraculous.

Sherry Hill

Tuesday, June 18, 2013


If you watch old movies, you will see a woman returning home with department store boxes and opening them up right in front of a not so happy husband. And sometimes you will see women carrying boxes of clothes out of stores and those boxes are piled high—in the movies that is. But I remember when I could purchase things in department stores and the sales clerk would get a box, put tissue paper in it and then place the item inside all neatly tucked. Each item went into its correctly sized box.

What a thrill it was to walk down the street carrying a huge coat box with the coat inside that I had lusted after forever finally being mine. Didn’t matter how cumbersome it was to carry it—the box and contents were mine. Same thing for hats: You received a round hat box for each hat you bought. Mine seemed to never stay in their boxes though for I was a teenager. But oh those hat boxes were plain grand with a beautiful paper outside and matching cording to carry it.

Each department store had their own signature boxes and designs. I still have some from some of the now long-gone downtown stores and I wince when I see them. Today’s females will never know the thrill of carrying boxes home from stores or opening them upon arriving home. The boxes were special. In today’s world, what are articles of clothing put in? Plastic bags and it’s a little unsettling if you were to remember the glorious boxes of the past.

Wasn’t anything expensive on the stores’ parts—well I suppose it was in retrospect but it was part of the glamour that like other things from the past have gone with the wind. And I miss those department store boxes big time.

Sherry Hill

Wednesday, May 29, 2013


The heat is upon us here and personally, I don’t like it at all. There was a time when I lived for blistering hot days; in fact, I thrived on them. Spent too much time taking sunbaths or being at the pool. Now the pool was wonderful but it closed about ten years ago:  It was a private pool that just about everyone in my neighborhood attended. Miss it.

But I don’t miss lying out in the 90 degree temperatures either. In fact, now when I’m outside and it’s hot and humid, it makes me sick. It has to be an age thing for about ten years ago, it didn’t affect me.

Three years ago, I had on a dark short sleeved top and dark pants when I decided to go outside about 11:00 in the morning to trim hedges. Had no idea that it was extremely hot till the water poured down my forehead into my eyes and they stung. Hobbling back around my house and up to the front door, I ran inside to the air conditioning and it took forever to get cool. In fact, it took about three days. Mini heat stroke was what happened to me.

After that experience, I will never do anything so stupid as that again ever in my life. Here where I live the humidity in the summers plus a high temperature equals bad news. It just zaps the life out of you. No, I didn’t think that would happen to me as I stated before but I started thinking about how women must have coped long ago in the heat. Can you imagine having to wear all those long slips and crinolines along with a long sleeved dress? No wonder people had fainting couches in their houses. Women fainted! Men probably did too.

And so I will go outside early in the mornings or late in the evenings when it’s scorching hot outside but not during the day—unless I’m in my car with the air conditioner running full blast. Can’t take the heat. Can you?

Sherry Hill

Tuesday, May 14, 2013


 If you believe in miracles, then welcome to my club, for I have seen them over and over. So many people are too "blind" to see them or ignore them. I could make a long list, but I won't. I just want to relate one experience that happened 12 years ago.

My mom died on May 10, 2001, and, as an only child, it was a terrific blow to me. Would be a terrific blow to anyone who has lost their mother, and one that is never expected but happens. She died on the Friday before Mother's Day -- what a shock it was to realize I no longer had a mother.
My mom's favorite colors were yellow and black. She had those colors (accented with hot pink) all over her gorgeous apartment. The day of her burial, when I got home, I walked out to the end of my street. From there I could look down at the city and just let my emotions go wild. It was about 4 in the afternoon, and as I turned around to walk back, I felt something on my face.
I didn't touch it, but could see it. It was a yellow and black butterfly. I dusted it off of me and really didn't think much about that incident until the next day, when it happened again to me at the end of the street. This time the butterfly landed on my arm and I looked at it and saw those colors and a chill went over me. Day after day, even when I had my dog with me, I would go out to end of the street and have a butterfly on me. This went on till late fall and then started all over again in the spring.
By this time, I just felt that it was somehow a spirit of my mom, for not only was the butterfly always yellow and black, but my mom loved butterflies and had a lot of butterfly things in her apartment. This experience went on for three straight years -- a butterfly landing somewhere on me every day (except in the winter). Then one day it stopped and has never happened again.
Whether others think it not, I think it was a miracle and think that somehow her spirit was linked to that butterfly. How could it not be? She was watching over me or it made me feel that way.
When I got up the gumption to tell others, they too had experienced butterflies either on them or around them after the death of a loved one. Maybe you have had it happen to you, or maybe you just didn't notice.
If your mother is still alive, cherish her. If you've lost her, it might be time to rethink this miracle.

Sherry Hill
*Published May 12, 2013 in The Charleston Gazette


Last Saturday my up the street neighbors were having a yard sale. I’d already asked if I could come up early—most detest that but my friends didn’t mind. It was cold here at seven in the morning so I put on a shirt, long pants, a coat and took off my shoes as I decided to wear my flat rubber rain boots. That was a big mistake if ever.

Those rain boots are kept on top of an umbrella stand by the front door. Last time I had them on was in February. The yard sale adrelaine was getting to me and did I look inside of those boots? Of course not. I put them on as fast as I could and headed out the door and up the hill. Oh I found treasures all right and my friend’s husband even carted them down the hill to my house. I was in “after yard sale heaven” staring at my treasures. Felt fine for about an hour or so, changed into my shoes, discarded the coat and plotted out my day.

Well that plotting didn’t last long because I started feeling sick to my stomach, got chills and wondered why my right calf hurt. Took to my bed and minute by minute I felt worse. Back up to get an extra strength aspirin and had to put on a robe on top of the other clothes before I got back in bed. I never thought to look at the back of my calf in the mirror; just thought it was a shin splint. And being the teacher I had been, it is innate in me to think that things will get better. They didn’t.

Sunday was a miserable day and I did get a hand-held mirror and looked at the back of my calf: There was a huge bump and around it, my skin was as red as a beet. That bump hurt when I touched it. Scared.  I decided to wait it out and go to see my doctor the first thing on Monday and I’m glad I did. After examining it, he told me that a spider had bitten me. “Funny” I said to him for I never felt the bite. Maybe most people don’t. He phoned in an antibiotic for me and it was picked up; said he wanted to see me if it got worse. Thank heavens the place didn’t get worse. I took his orders and stayed off my feet which is not normal for me at all. Fear can do that: Make you follow directions.

It is now Tuesday and yesterday I took the last prescribed pill. My calf doesn’t hurt and the swelling is gone but there still is a place that is visible.

Maybe you are wondering why I didn’t go to the emergency room:  I didn’t realize what was going on that Saturday. Should have looked at my calf [the bite was on the back of it] in a mirror but assumed it was a shin splint. Shin splints don’t make you sick to your stomach or give you a fever. Spider bites do if you realize you have one.

I can tell you this:  The rubber rain boots are no longer on top of the umbrella stand by the front door. And I will never put any type of footware near it for spiders love to come in that way. And I will look into boots or shoes before I ever put them on. Luck was with me for it could have been a bite from a spider that had deathly venom. The moral of this story is not to assume that one has a shin splint without looking at where the pain is coming from by using a mirror—and never put on boots without looking inside.

Along came a spider and it bit me. And I spent a week in bed. Who wants that? Count me out next time.

Sherry Hill

Monday, April 1, 2013



Ah April I welcome you
Along with your blooms
Rain and whirlygigs that
Fall from my maple trees
And cover my yard like
A blanket of snow.
Your rain I don’t mind
It’s a welcome relief
And I love your breeze.
But all of the above
Make me sneeze.
The allergies came not
Long ago
And lo and behold
April brings them out
In me.
So I grab an umbrella
Just in case
And stuff tissues
Everywhere when I must
Go out.
You are the month of hope
That brings back the color
That winter desperately grabbed
And hid.
You are the month of blooms
Cheering us when we need it
What would we do without you?
You are a respite before the
Hot heat of summer descends upon
So bring your rain, your blooms
And your color.
Allergies aside,
I need you as much
As everyone else.
Welcome April!

Sherry Hill

Sunday, March 31, 2013


On this day, I wish you and yours a blessed Easter.
So many memories of Easters past still remain with me and that's a good
thing for it is those that make me happy. I well remember how much my
mom hated finding that plastic Easter grass everywhere! Personally, I loved it.
When my sons were old enough to have their own baskets, did they have
that shredded plastic grass? Yes, they did! And I'd find remnants of it a year
later hidden here and hidden there.

Looking back, I don't think I ever ate a dyed Easter egg nor did my sons.
Who would want to eat one that had been outside rolled around and cracked?
But the joy was in finding it--just a simple pleasure.

Easter was a day of dressing up and as a young girl, I had to wear a hat chosen by 
my mom and never liked any of them. Ever. My dresses weren't so bad but they had
to be made of cotton when I was a child and almost a teenager. Flimsy organza dresses
were considered taboo--isn't that a dumb thing? But they were. And all girls had to wear
socks with black or white shoes on Easter. I came to have a long hate affair with socks
for that reason.

As I got older, it was common for teenage girls to walk around the neighborhood all dressed 
up on Easter. Think "Easter Parade" left over for years and years but we did it. And lo and
behold, we got to choose our own hats and they were humdingers if ever! Big, flowery and
now considered "retro." I wish I had a picture to show you but those have been long gone.

My fondest Easter memories were of a huge family dinner and then going for a long drive 
to our capitol building here in town and into upper scale neighborhoods just to sight see.
And of course there was the proverbial Easter basket that seemed to never change much
for me: I didn't get toys. Candy. Lots of candy and jelly beans. And there was a feeling in
the air of a brand new day--perhaps that is truly what Easter is all about aside from the
real reason.

Today I wish you and yours a blessed Easter. And hope you have many memories to draw
up on as I do.

Sherry Hill