Thursday, May 15, 2014

The Whatevers or The TRUTH Behind Lilydale

Hello and welcome back to this months adventure in creative storytelling with THE WHATEVERS. Here is my take for May…enjoy!

As I got older my parents decided to clear the air and explain how and why we left 125th St. in NYC to come to this strange little town called Lilydale. Now we had already lived there going on a dozen years and I was 17 year old, getting ready to go off to college the next fall. Although I loved living here it was strange in so many ways that I couldn't explain. This is when my parents sat me down to try and help make sense of it for me.

It all started the first summer we went to Lilydale, NY. It was only going to be for the summer and then back to NYC. Papa and Momma only took temporary jobs at  the Maplewood House, hoping to give all their children fresh air, sunshine, room to run around and just be kids. "IT" happened one day as Momma and I were walking down to Chautauqua Lake. We strolled past an orchard with a stone fence around it, it looked vaguely familiar to me. As we got closer to the fence I started jumping up and down, tugging on Mommas hand, trying to get her attention. Finally she looked down at me, incredulous that I was so excited, and she asked me why. When I told her, at that very moment everything changed. See I saw my Aunt Gertrude and Uncle Ernie sitting there on the fence. I saw them as clear as could be. I saw pretty pink flowers and circles of colors glowing around them, I saw the crisp white dress and the khaki uniform, but Momma couldn't see them. She stopped and knelt down to my level and very seriously said that it was impossible that I could see them.

"No Momma, I saw them. I really, really saw them. Aunt Gertrude was wearing a pretty white dress and Uncle Ernie had on a uniform." She said" impossible, that's impossible". Again I told her "no Momma, they called me by my name, they beckoned me to come over to the fence. They wanted to talk to me." Momma just froze, she looked again but I could tell she wasn't amused with my antics.

What I didn't know was Aunt Gertrude and Uncle Ernie had died in a car accident before I was born. What I had described to Momma was exactly like a  photograph that Momma carried folded in a hidden pocket everyday since the accident. She slowly pulled it from her pocket and carefully unfolded it…"Momma that's them, over there" I screamed but Momma didn't see them.

We walked slowly back to the inn, Momma didn't say much to me. In fact she barely said anything for several days except for when she was alone with Papa or when several of the town folks filed in and out like a secret meeting was taking place. I didn't know at that time what they were talking about but my parents had several big decisions to make.

After that my parents decided to permanently move to Lilydale. It seemed like I had become the talk of this little town. I found myself being bustled back and forth to different homes. At first it was fun but then I got tired of being asked all sorts of questions. I also got tired of my parents not seeing or hearing what I did but so many of other town folks did.

When the truth was revealed by Momma and Papa I was told that I had a gift, a gift that most people don't have or don't believe in. The reason we moved to Lilydale was because it had become quite evident that I had psychic abilities. Lilydale was known as The Town That Talks to the Dead. It seemed that I saw so many things that most others didn't and as I grew older this gift became stronger and stronger. I was OK when at home but in the outside world people looked at me quite oddly when I would see and talk to their relatives that had passed to the other side.

I knew I was different but now that the truth came to light I had to make a decision as to what I was going to do with this knowledge. I didn't have too much to say, it was too much to take in. Momma, Papa and I sat on the porch that night, not talking, just sitting and enjoying a cold glass of Mommas homemade Mint Lemon-Limeade.

4-6 lemons, plus slices for garnish
3-4 limes, plus slices for garnish
1/3 cup fresh mint leaves
3/4 cup superfine sugar
8 cups cold water

Squeeze the juice from the lemons and limes over a strainer into a glass measuring cup (about 1 cup of juice).

In the bottom of a tall pitcher, use a wooden spoon to gently mash the mint leaves with 1/4 cup of the sugar. Add the strained juice; stir well to dissolve the sugar. Add the cold water and the remaining 1/2 cup sugar to the pitcher; stir well to dissolve the sugar. Taste for sweetness and add more sugar, if desired. Chill before serving.

Serve poured over ice in tall glasses garnished with a fresh sprig of mint, lemon and lime slices.
Before I sign off I want to share with you the stamps that I used for this project. My friends, Nathalie Kalbach and Catherine Matthews Scanlon, have designed stamps that have been produced and available for purchase.

Here are links to the other creative stories about The Whatevers. Please stop by and see what these fabulous artists have created.
If you would like to play along it's not to late to join in. Here are all the details that you need to know.
Here is how it works ~
  • Vicki, Cat, Cuchy (Carmen), Nathalie and I have made a one-year commitment to each other and picked twelve photos with Whatevers whom we will give a story.
  • Every month – if possible always on the 15th –  each of us will do a post with an individual story that goes along for us with the same photo.
  • If you want you can play along and we will have the photo for you to download and show us your version of The Whatevers. The photo will be posted at the end of our blogposts- not on Facebook!
  • There is no rules to the story itself- it can be funny, sad, uplifting, breathtaking- WHATEVER
  • There is no rules on the length or the form of the story- it can be a short sentence, an essay, a poem or a soap opera – WHATEVER
  • There is no rules on the artform you choose – it can be a scrapbook layout, an altered art project, an artjournal page – WHATEVER
  • Here is a rule though: if you take the photo you have to link back to us and show us your story.
  • These pictures are from our personal stash and are for personal use for you only! If you want to use them for a publication whether a book or magazine in print or digital form please ask for permission!
  • If you want to participate we’ll have a linky list for each Whatever Post.
  • You can also join our The Whatevers -Facebook Page


Thank you for stopping by. Only 2 months left and I still have a lot of story left to share :)


  1. Scary!!! LOL
    Love the colourful background and the contrast with the picture.

  2. I love how you layered my flowers on top of Nat's circle and texture stamps -- lovely look and beautiful design. And ha ha on the story, I always wanted to have psychic abilities when I was a kid and always "practiced" moving things with my mind. xo

  3. Love the story- goosebumps. And oh the background is gorgeous and the hole page- So so so stoked that you used my and Cat's stamps - LOVE!!!! Thank you, you made my morning!


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