52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History – Pets

My family has always been blessed with pets in the house.  My parents have always had cats and dogs.  The household raised parakeets, hamsters, gerbils, and guinea pigs. We had a parakeet named Mike that lived in the kitchen when we were little.  He loved to tell people that he was a dirty bird.  I had a pair of parakeets, Leslie and Pete. They would fly around my room, sit on my shoulder, and play with toys. 

Matt, Fritz, me, Spooky and Mom 1966

I had a hamster named Priscella that had a tendency to bite but I stilled enjoyed her as a pet.  My brother and I had guinea pigs, mine was Butterscotch, I think his was named Fred.  We had many cats.  Our first cat was Spooky – a slick black cat that used to hunt us when we walked down the hall.  Later we had a tom cat named King George the Fury that followed me home.  Mom and dad said that is he was on the porch in the morning I could keep him – he was there!  George loved sitting on my father in the recliner.  He also brought gifts home for us – usually some type of rodent, sometimes a bird.  He like to sit in the basement near the air vent and yowl so it vibrated through the house. We also had a cat named Ralph (female) that we rescued from my grandparents house. My grandfather thought we should just let the cat die but I cried until my parents decided to take her home – she was sick all the way home – my parents spent a good deal of money in vet bills bringing her back to health.  I loved that cat….

Mom and Taffy the Great Dane 1970

Our first dog was a dachshund, his name was Fritz.  At the same time my father came home with a Great Dane that he rescued.  Her name was Taffy.  Dad would exercise her by running her while he rode a bike.  It worked out well until the time Taffy stopped but Dad went over the handlebars.  Once Taffy got loose and ran away.  Mom called the police to report the dog missing and he police said that would explain the calls about a lion rooming the neighborhood.  Another time Taffy got loose and wandered over to the neighbors and tried to take a steak off their grill.  We had a German Shepherd named Elsa after Taffy passed away.  Elsa ate a chair and took off the handle to the sliding glass door.  Elsa was devoted to my mother.

Our household has gone from four cats and five dogs and one guinea pig to just two dogs and two cats.  Our pets passed of old age and complications.  We just last year got a puppy named Leroy Jethro Gibbs to keep our only dog, Callie, company.  We now have a seventeen year old cat named Frank and a six year old cat named Stinkie.  We lost our guinea pig a few years ago after having him for more than ten years. I miss Piggie, he always whistled when we came home or entered the rec room.  Funny how a rodent could mean so much.  

Stinkie 2010


Gary’s Grandpa – Frank Augustus Urmanovich

One of the numerous SS-5 application requests I made was for my husband’s Grandpa Frank Augustus Urmanovich. 

I did receive some clues from the application.  I now know that Frank’s middle name was Augustus.  Once again the last name is spelled differently –  Urmanovich.  I have seen his papers say Urmanovich and Yurmanovich.  The only consistency with his name was after his naturalization when the name was changed to Urman.  The application also lists Western Machine Company as an employer.  His mother’s last name appears to have a different spelling also, it looks like Gebaj, instead of Geboy.  I know have a few additional clues upon which to search, wish me luck!

52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History: Golden Bear Resturant

Week 16. Restaurants. What was your favorite local restaurant as a child? Where was it located, and what was your favorite meal? Did you know the staff personally? What is your favorite restaurant now?

Growing up in the suburbs of Chicago we often went out for breakfast on Sundays.  I remember as a teenager going to a German Restaurant that had a buffet – I don’t recall the name but they had great food. My parents stuck to buffets to keep my teenage brothers never ending hunger at bay.

My fondest memories are from when my brother and I were young and our parents would take us Golden Bear Pancake Restaurant.  The best part of the place was the plethora of syrups they had available at the table.  They had boysenberry, strawberry, apricot, peach, blueberry and many more flavors – a great for someone who was allergic to Maple.  The pancakes were delicious.  I think the pancakes also came with sausage.

I remember having Golden Books about bears at the time that Mom would read to us.  I think the bear’s name was Honey Bear – I am not sure if the books and the restaurants had anything to do with each other – I just associate the two together for some reason.
I really don’t have a favorite place to eat nowadays.  My husband and I have been trying different places for fun around town.  We have eaten Ethiopian food, found a few new pizza places,  tried a few burger places, and enjoyed some Mexican here in Tucson. We’ll just keep on trying to find a favorite!

Summer’s visiting at Grandma and Grandpa Clark’s

Pam, Dad (Lloyd Clark) and Steven summer of  1967

I enjoyed the summers at my grandparents, often Mom and Dad would leave us at our Grandparents for a week or so.  It was a great time to see my numerous cousins.  The picture above is of my cousin Pam, my Dad and my cousin Steve.  I haven’t seen Pam since she was married years and years ago.  Steve passed away in a auto accident in 1982.  Perhaps I last saw Pam at Steven’s funeral.  Pictures like this remind me to cherish my cousins and other family members.