Janet had Surgery on her ACL – Fri. August 16, 2019

My niece, Janet Smith Keeter, had surgery today to repair her torn ACL and the surgery went well. She is home recovering in Lodi. Her Mom, my sister Joan, says that unfortunately, the full recovery requires 9 months of physical therapy. Janet’s ski accident was June 7th, so it will take about a year to recover from the accident.

Janet on June 7, 2019.

Here’s to a speedy recovery, Janet!


Timothy J. Canty, Sr. (March 26, 1900 – August 12, 1964) – Mon. Aug. 12, 2019

August 12th always brings back memories of my father. Today marks the 55th anniversary of Dad’s death in Oakland in 1964. Dad was born on March 26, 1900 on a farm in Port Kenyon, near Ferndale in Humboldt Co. CA.

Here is a photo of my Dad and Mom taken in Dec. 1953 when they were chaperoning a Newman Club dance when I was a Freshman at Cal. Yes, they had chaperones in those days!

Tim Canty and Maxine Ferguson Canty – Dec. 1953

2 weeks before I was about to get married in June 1964, I received a call that Dad was being taken to the hospital for surgery for gastro-interitis. About-to-be husband, Brandon Wheeler, Sr, and I jumped in the car and drove from Sacramento to Providence Hospital in Oakland. As we walked into the hospital relatives’ waiting area, I saw a big smile on my sister Joan’s face as a doctor was talking to family members. Dad had survived the surgery.

My mother insisted that I not postpone my wedding, so Brandon and I were married as scheduled on June 20,1964 at St. Ignatius Church in Sacramento. Dad was still in the hospital, so brother Tim Jr. walked me down the aisle. After changing into our “going away” clothes, we drove to Oakland to my folks’ house. We changed back into our wedding clothes, then visited my Dad in the hospital dressed in our wedding clothes.

We made several trips to Oakland during the next few weeks. I celebrated my 30th birthday with Dad.. Here are a some pictures from that day:

Brother Jim, Barb, Dad, Brandon, brother Tim Jr, and Tim’s son, Tim III – July 27, 1964.
Dad always served the plates from the head of the table. So, it looks like he is investigating a seafood stew.

Mom, brother Tim holding his 8 month old son Jimmy, Dad, Timmy on Barb’s lap, and Brandon prepare for the candle blowing out.

Here is Dad relaxing after dinner.

Joe Zavadil, my sister Patricia’s husband, and their 3 children were spending the summer in Pasadena where Joe was doing research at the Huntington Library on a Sabbatical from the English Department at the University of New Mexico. Patricia was expecting child #4 imminently. The plan was that Brandon and I would stay with my friend Barbara Chase and her husband Vern in South Pasadena and then babysit the 3 Zavadil children while Patricia was in the hospital. On the 1st of August we got a call from Patricia saying that she had been to the doctor that day and was told that she was about to deliver. We headed to Barb and Vern’s and waited and waited. On August 10th we celebrated Joe’s birthday at the Chases, and then said our farewells figuring we couldn’t impose on the Chases any longer.

That night we got a call that Patricia was in labor, and we headed to the Zavadil’s house to babysit Mary 4, Joe Jr, 3 and Peter almost 2. John Timothy Zavadil was born that morning on August 11th. We headed home on the 12th. Soon after we arrived home, we got the call that Dad had died. So, Dad knew that he had a new grandchild with Timothy as a middle name.

Dad was only 64 when he died and was on sick leave, still employed as a Civil Engineer in the Transportation Department of the Public Utilities Commission, the PUC, in San Francisco. The funeral procession was much longer than I expected because many of Dad’s fellow employees in the Transportation Department came to the funeral. Dad is buried at St. Mary’s Cemetery in Oakland.

25 years later on August 12, 1989, grandson JIm (Jimmy in the above photo) was married to Bridget Nealon. At their reception in the Oakland hills a picture of Jim and Bridget and Jim’s 19 first cousins was taken. This is the only time that all of my parents’ 20 grandchildren were together. At the time the 20 cousins ranged in age from 15 to 30. Unfortunately, Jim died of ALS at age 40. I am thinking of you today, Bridget, on what would have been your 30th anniversary.


Tommy hosted his cousin – Sun. August , 2019

Steve wrote yesterday that his sister Debbie and her son Torrey came up to Traverse City to visit this weekend. Debbie and Torrey live in Grand Rapids, MI. Tommy wanted to show them Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. Here are a few photos of their hike yesterday:

Tommy is enjoying his hike through the sand.

Tommy’s cheeks look awfully red. But, Steve says that it was a perfect 78 degree sunny day.

Kirsten, Tommy, and Steve are near the top of Sleeping Bear Dunes where Little Glen Lake begins. The are facing East away from Lake Michigan.

After all that hiking, Tommy enjoyed a snack.
After climbing the dunes they went to a beach on Lake Michigan to cool off for a bit.

12 year old Torrey and cousin Tommy are enjoying the waters of Lake Michigan.

Tommy, your suggestion for entertaining your guests was a good one!


Dinner at Jim and Deb’s – Sat. August 10, 2019

Tonight we went to dinner at Jim and Deb’s house in the Land Park area of Sacramento. JIm is Clark’s oldest son and Jim always cooks wonderful grilled meats and fish. Tonight Jim cooked sword fish which melted in your mouth, as well as scallops and prawns. Deb says she is in charge of decorating – getting the table set. Clark’s 3rd son, Dan and wife Anne who live in Elk Grove also attended as well as their daughter Hannah who works in Washington DC.

Hannah is the Communications Director for David Trone, a congressman from Baltimore. She is normally on duty 24/7, so since Congress is on break, she too, has a wall deserved break. 4 of her friends from DC came with her to Sacramento for about 10 days. They went to Napa including a dinner at The French Laundry. Conversation tonight was lively with Hannah’s interesting stories.

Anne, Clark, Deb, Jim, Dan, and Hannah are about to begin a delicious dinner in perfect weather.

Thanks, Jim and Deb for a delightful evening.

Message from Ulysses, Erin’s High School Classmate – Monday, August 5, 2019

I woke up to this wonderful message this morning from Ulysses:
Barbara, I was just thinking of you and I wanted to say hello. On Saturday, the El Camino Class of 1989 got together and celebrated our 30-year reunion. Erin’s absence was deeply felt by those who knew and loved her, and many fond remembrances of her were shared. What a special girl you gave to us all. All of my best to you and your family, as always.

-Ulysses Smpardos

I first met Ulysses at the memorial for Erin. What a special young man. In the blog entry of Fri, June 27, 2017, I posted a message from Ulysses. The flowers below were from that entry:

Thank you so much Ulysses. You touched my heart.


Big Time in Traverse City, MI

Tonight I was watching MSNBC after the Democrats debated. Suddenly, Brian Williams on MSNBC was interviewing Michael Moore at length in Traverse City, MI. I texted Kirsten to tell her. She said that it is big time in little Traverse City right now with Michael Moore having a film festival there.

Paco watched Star Wars Return of the Jedi in the bayside park last night. And tommy will see Back to the Future in the park while at a birthday party on Friday.

Traverse City keeps popping up in the news and I had never heard of it until 4 years ago.


Guess who is 85 today? – Sat. July 27, 2019

Clark and I spent my 85th birthday by attending a lecture by Gerry Fox of Napa who was speaking at the Folsom Bridge Club today at 11 am. He is an excellent lecturer. The title of his talk was, “Count, Dracula!”, on counting cards, counting points etc. As we got out of the car, I heard someone call, “Barbara” and it was my Wed, night bridge partner, Madelynn Burton. Madelynn rarely makes that long 18 mi drive to the Folsom Bridge Club (which is actually in Orangevale), but her occasional partner had talked her in to attending the lecture. I had talked Sharan Fleming, my Friday partner, into attending.

Clark and I then stayed for the bridge game. Madelynn told the director that today was my birthday and he announced it to the players as we began to play. So, as I arrived at each of the 7 tables, I received congratulations from the other players.

We had tentative plans to go to Granite Bay to Hawks restaurant which gets very high reviews for the food, though it is pricey. But, it wasn’t going to open for dinner until 5 pm and we were finished with bridge about 3:30 pm. So, another player suggested a relatively new restaurant called Oak Water in the same Quarry Ponds Shopping Center as Hawks.

Barbara and Clark enjoying an early dinner at Oak Water restaurant.
I ordered a Cobb salad with salmon (very rare) and gave Clark part of my salad. The salmon was rare the way I like it and melted in my mouth.

In back of the restaurant is a lovely pond which fills an old quarry:

Barb and Clark with view of a pond filling the old quarry. The waitress knew exactly where we should sit. She takes lots of such pictures for customers.

Thanks for all of the birthday cards, phone calls, texts, and emails!