around the frame oct 2019 – our experiences

Dear St. Frances!

I can’t put my finger on it but the September 2019 Ninepatch seemed special, almost “glowing”. Really odd.

It was a simple pleasure to read.

Have a great day!


Malaina (See also her story in FABRICS.)


Dear Frances:

Your service work in getting an adult club started for autistic folks sounds challenging and rewarding.  Good for you!  It sounds to me like a ministry effort. You are already a minister to women, but I think you know that.

  I’ve been thinking back on the review I wrote for James Lee Burke’s book. I struggle with saying negative things about novels. (If that makes any sense.)  Toni Morrison died recently. I recall when I reviewed a book of hers for a local free newspaper in Grand Rapids Michigan, On The Town. (This was years ago when I worked at a bookstore in that city.)

It was a negative review and after it was published, I felt ashamed to have written it. I don’t even remember which book it was, but perhaps Song of Solomon. Even though she is worshipped by many, I remember being confused by Morrison’s work and the book.

  I ended up feeling as though I wasn’t worthy of having my opinion and didn’t know what I was talking about.

  So, I will think about the Burke review some more. On the other hand, I wasn’t the only fan who was disappointed by it.  I think Burke is played out as far as Dave Robicheaux’s character goes. 

  Sometimes, things just are as they are.  The mantra of progress, not perfection comes to mind. Bless you, you are a fine person!


Linda Rosenthal (Sept.’19) adds, “In the beginning of September we motored off to Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.  Bill and I both need a rest away from work.  I forget to play after working so hard. Then when I have the opportunity, I don’t know how. ;-(  Our coming three months away for the winter restores some of that, but working so hard all summer tears it all down again.”


Hi Frances,

Things are okay in my world. New boss… time will tell about how my job will change. It’s hard to lose control of what and how I get things done.

Your new group, Blending In for Adults sounds wonderful!

What a gift and the need is evident in the participation. God bless you! Another ministry!

Lots of special events in my agenda for the fall! Nice to have exciting experiences to look forward to.
Must get going – lots – to do!


Georgene(Sept.’19) adds, “My husband needs two surgeries, a hernia repair and surgery to remove a nodule in his lymph nodes that have some cancer markers.  I had a similar nodule removed last summer that was near my thyroid. At least we know what to expect. Aging is a big UGH!


 Hi Fritzie,

It was good to hear from you. I am happy for the cooler weather. Not quite ready for winter though. Mostly, I am concerned for the homeless. (My son is still among them.)  Still, the coolness we are feeling now is really nice. 

I go out in the morning and feed the ducks that stand around and wait for me, but then fuss at me after I feed them.  Guess I don’t get out to them fast enough. 

It doesn’t get light enough around 6:30. Even though they wait, I am not going out while it is still dark. 

They are so funny.   

  I have been ill and still having a few tests. The doctors tell me in about a year the joint pain, fatigue and loss of appetite that polymyalgia rhematica caused will go away. At least I don’t have the Giant Cell Arteritis in my head – the last thing tested me for!

  Take care my friend.  Talk to you later.


Patricia (June’19) adds, “I am not reading fiction so much lately.  Reading mostly political books. If Anne Perry releases another ‘Charlotte and William Pitt’ book I will pick it up at the library.  Also, I wish MC Beaton would write another in the ‘Agatha Raisin’ series.”


Dear Frances,

In your last letter, you described various categories of activities you have been experiencing. I agree. We all have hundreds of little jobs and errands to run. That’s life!

Yesterday I spent the day with my sister-in-law. I had to renew my lease, then go to the dollar store and also get groceries. My sister-in-law had her own errands along the way. But, we stopped to eat lunch. That was fun.

You asked if I talked with people who live in my building. We don’t have all that much in common. They all have family to do things with. And, most of them are younger than I am, too.

Love and Prayers,


LindaSue (Aug. 2019) adds, “It was nice you had time with your younger son, too.”


Hi Fritzie,

My husband and I just returned from a weekend visiting my cousin in Michigan. Saturday, we went to Port Huron. It was a beautiful day to spend along the Lake Huron. We attended a Chippewa PowWow. The Indian Fry Bread was a treat – better than an elephant ear from a fair!

One Indian family made and sold a “Bella Bar:” deer tallow soap! It is named for a family niece. (I chose a rosemary scent.)

The Osoriasis tribe hunts deer in the fall. Making soap is a way to use all the animal’s tallow.

A smiley blessing! ?


At Fort Gratiot Light Station
At Fort Gratiot Light Station

Kay (Sept.’19) adds, “We also went to Fort Gratiot Light House Station where we climbed the eighty-six-foot tower. It had breathtaking views of Lake Huron and the Blue Water Bridges to Sarnia, Canada.”


Hi Frances!

Just got home from trip to Ashville, Tennessee where I attended a glassblowing workshop with a friend. It was hard work and quite hot, too. Dehydration was close to my heart. But I now have an ap-preciation of the glass-blowing art form. 

Blowing glass
Blowing glass

The Molson glass is magical and, just like working with clay, it needed manipulation and a light touch. It also required BIG breath and stamina. 


Heating the glass before blowing.
Heating the glass before blowing.

Amy Karen (Sept.’19) adds, “It was fascinating, but I don’t think I will take up a career in this field!”


Dear Francamsubbingathighschool,

Your story of the Blending In meeting was fascinating. Bless you for following through on this. I know that there are special challenges for adults on the autism spectrum.

A friend of mine, who has a son with autism and is a professor of film studies, has just completed a movie about some of those issues.

It’s titled Aging Out and is about what becomes of people with special needs once they leave the school system. 

          Speaking of movies, have you seen the one about the writer Ron Susskind and his son Owen? It’s called Life, Animated and is based on the book of the same name.

He tells the story of how he was able to communicate with his mute autistic son through Disney characters and movies.  I attended a fascinating presentation of the elder Susskind when I was working for the non-public school. 

  Love <3


Liz/Moascar (Aug.’19) adds, “Susskind’s insights and his son’s journey are enlightening.”

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