Saturday, October 22, 2016

Society Saturday - Baltimore and the War of 1812

The National Board of the US Daughters of 1812 spent a day touring some historic sites in Baltimore.

Our first stop was at Fort McHenry, site of the August 1814 bombardment that inspired Francis Scott Key to write the "Star Spangled Banner".

We learned what life was like during the past 200 years of the fort's existence, saw the soldiers' quarters, looked out over the ramparts, examined the cannons, and of course, saw where the flag stood.

That afternoon, we visited the Star Spangled  Flag house, where we learned all about Mary Pickersgill, and how she made the flag.   There is a museum next door with a wall showing how big the flag actually was - 30 x 42 feet.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Society Saturday - Columbus Day 2016

It was a beautiful day in Washington DC when several patriotic and historical groups gathered to celebrate the 524th anniversary of Columbus landing in the new world.

The Children of the American Colonists were represented by their National President and President General, along with a few members.

The National winner of the NSDAR Columbus Essay is the State President of Pennsylvania CAC.  She read her essay to the crowd.

Then all of the organizations presented their wreaths.

thanks to NCCA and Susan Meer for the photos.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Society Saturday - Feeding the children of Haiti

To celebrate the 126th anniversary of the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution, every chapter was asked to do a community service project this week.  Our chapter chose to go to Feed My Starving Children.

This is a non-profit agency that uses volunteer groups to pack food that is sent to third world countries.  The food is dried rice, soy, vegetables and a vitamin powder. Because of the recent hurricane Matthew, the food we packed was sent to Haiti. 

Several members of the Isle a la Cache chapter DAR, along with members of the Pierce Downer C.A.R., had a fun and productive morning for our #DAR #dayofservice. 

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Society Saturday - Heritage Weekend

The Illinois Heritage Alliance held their Fourth Annual Heritage Weekend last week.  This year, there were 18 societies represented, inlcuding a few new societies - new to the state or just new to the weekend.

Members gathered Friday evening for a meet and greet.  This is always a good opportunity to meet new people and reacquaint with old friends.

Saturday morning started with a color guard supplied by the local Sons of the American Revolution chapter.  We had a color guard from a local Naval Sea Cadet unit on Sunday morning.

Each Society held their meeting in an open format so that others (especially prospective members) could attend.  They gave basic information about their society, such as dates and locations of meetings, and membership requirements, in addition to conducting their own business.

Everyone joined together for lunch and dinner on Saturday.  Our luncheon speaker was Betsy Jones, the Governor General of the National Society Sons and Daughters of the Pilgrims.  She attended Heritage Weekend as part of her official visit to the Illinois Branch.  She gave an entertaining talk on the "Colorful Ladies of Tombstone".  It was an entertaining look at some of the early residents of that famous old western town.

Our speaker that evening was Kathryn Harris.  She gave us a first person interpretation of Elizabeth Keckley, who was the dressmaker for Mary Todd Lincoln.  We learned another aspect of that first lady.

On Sunday morning, there were 6 more meetings.  Everyone went home with a sense of satisfaction after that weekend.

Saturday, July 09, 2016

Society Saturday - Children of the American Colonists meet in Lexington

The 76th Annual General Assembly of the Children of the American Colonists was held in Lexington, KY.

These were cupcakes!

Our "Fun Day" began with a trip to the Kentucky Horse Park.  There, the members (and adults) learned about horse racing, and the history of domesticated horses.  Some went for horseback rides.

The afternoon was spent at Spindletop estate.  This is the private club for Alumni of UK.  We enjoyed a picnic buffet, swimming, and touring the house.

In the evening, members enjoyed pizza and swimming, then had fun in the hospitality room.  As usual, all participated in making a Christmas gift to be delivered to our veterans in December.

On Saturday, we conducted the business meeting.  National President Reagan Zolman did an excellent job of presiding.

The meeting ended with a memorial service for one Honorary President General and several Life Promoters who died this past year.  Anthony P. played taps.

In the afternoon, we traveled to the Jack Jouett House.  Jack Jouett was known as the "Paul Revere of the South".  He traveled 40 miles to warn the Virginia legislature that British Dragoons were on the way.  After the Revolutionary War, he retired to Versailles, Kentucky.  Our CAC National Project this year was to place a marker and flags at his house.  We dedicated the marker and flags on a beautiful sunny (and warm!) afternoon.  After the dedication, we enjoyed refreshments provided by the Kentucky Daughters of the American Colonists.

In the evening, we held our Candlelight Banquet.  Awards were given out, we were entertained by the singing of member Molly M., and new officers were installed.

Reagan is now a Kentucky Colonel.
New Life Promoters

The evening ended with fellowship and plans to attend next year's General Assembly in Missouri.

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

Workday Wednesday - Thirty Years at the County

I am reposting this from my work blog so  that my descendants will have an idea of what I did for most of my life ----

Thirty years ago, I was a wide-eyed naive intern starting my rotation on Ward 60A - General Surgery - at Cook County Hospital.  I had chosen this residency because of the world famous trauma unit at the hospital.

After 6 years of residency (including a year of research), I decided to stay on as the Clinical Trauma Fellow.  Upon finishing the fellowship, there was an opening on the attending staff which I accepted.
Long story short, I never left.  I had never intended to stay at the County or in Chicago as long as I did.  I looked elsewhere for fellowships and jobs, but nothing could compare to the World Famous Trauma Unit at Cook County Hospital.

I have worked in 3 Trauma Units in 2 hospitals - the original unit on the third floor of the old hospital followed by the "new" unit on the first floor of the old hospital - and, for the past 14 years, in the unit at the new hospital.

I have worked under three Trauma Directors, with several Trauma Attendings and Fellows, and innumerable nurses, clerks, pharmacists, therapists, etc.

I have helped train nearly 2500 residents and a similar number of medical students.  I have watched some of those residents pursue their own careers in trauma and become leaders in the field.

I have treated thousands of patients over the years.  In addition to resuscitating and admitting my share of the now over 6000 trauma activations per year, I have helped to care for many more while they were in the Trauma ICU and wards.

Now, after 30 years, it is time to move on.  I have been reflecting on the past 30 years - more than half my life - spent at one of the country's busiest Trauma Units.  There are many things I will not miss, but several that I will:

I will not miss:
  • Hospital food - while the cafeteria in the new hospital is much better than the old "Cafe' Cloaca", it is still just hospital food.
  • Fighting with a combative patient at 2 am who needs care because of an injury they sustained  while drunk or high.
  • Notifying families that their loved one is dead as a result of senseless violence, or drunk driving.
  • Trying to sleep in the call room, knowing that I may be called to save a life at any minute.
  • Not having the appropriate suture, dressing, or medication because a) the hospital is on credit hold with that company, b) someone forgot to reorder or restock that item, or c) nobody on night shift can access it.
  • The morning drive to work.  I live 20 miles away by mostly expressway.  My morning commute has lengthened from 30 minutes to 90 minutes and it doesn't matter how early I leave.
I will miss:
  • All of the staff I have worked with.  Although we came from many walks of life, I believe that we all had the welfare of our patients in mind.
  • Spending time with the residents on call - we bonded over shared experiences and take-out dinners.
  • Seeing a patient who was once near the brink of death leave the hospital for rehab.  Or even, better, seeing that patient come back weeks  later to say "Thank you".
  • Impromptu teaching during morning report, on call, and in the OR.  While  enjoyed giving lectures, my favorite type of educating was discussing the injury pattern, work-up and management of whatever patient happened to come in at the time.
Goodbye, Cook County Trauma Unit - you will always hold a special place in my heart. 

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Society Saturday - Southern Dames in Alabama

The Annual Assembly of the National Society Southern Dames of America was held in Birmingham, Alabama.

The meeting started with a "Fun Day" on Thursday.  Over 50 ladies drove to the Arlington House for lunch and a tour.  Our luncheon speaker was "Lou Wooster", a famous madam from Birmingham.  She told us how she moved from Montgomery to the brand new town of Birmingham in 1871 to establish a business.  She was very successful until a cholera epidemic impacted her business.  She and her "girls" volunteered to help nurse (and sometimes bury) the cholera victims.  This earned her a congressional commendation for her service.

We then toured Arlington House - the only antebellum home still standing in Birmingham.  It was built in the 1840's.  Union General Wilson took over the first floor of the home near the end of the Civil War.  The house was later used as a boarding house.  It has been restored as a museum since the 1950's.

The next day, we learned a history of Civilization as told by dolls.  This was an interesting program given by Annette Smith, an avid doll collector. She brought representative antique dolls from her collection and told how the type of doll reflected the industrial and political happenings of the time.  

Then there was a memorial service and a board meeting, with the business session the next day.

On Saturday, we had the Eye Program luncheon.  One of the main purposes of this organization is support of eye research and eye assistance programs.  The speaker at this luncheon was Dr. Dawn DeCarlo, an optometrist who specializes in rehabilitation for patients with low vision.  She told of some of the things that can be done by adding magnification and manipulating contrast to help people see.  Her research focuses on children who are visually impaired.  

That evening we had a formal banquet followed by Awards.  We were entertained by some of the ladies from North Carolina who gave a program about "One Eyed Jacks and Jills" - they told of several famous people who had only one eye - from Sandy Duncan to Sammy Davis Jr to Teddy Roosevelt.  Awards ranged from membership to outstanding programs to Creative Arts. 

The other main purpose of this organization is support of the Creative Arts.  During the weekend, there were several items on display that had been made by the members.  Awards were given for the best in each category.

The evening concluded with installation of new officers for the 2016-2018 term.  All in all, it was an enjoyable weekend and I look forward to returning next year.