Monday, January 31, 2011

Farm Boy

Hello, my friends!
It’s been a week since I last posted—wow!  I had a wonderful visit with my family in Utah—parents, my college daughter, a brother & a sister and their families…had such a lovely time!
You know how much I love a beautiful sunrise……here’s what I woke up to see my first morning in my parents’ backyard…
…this is VERY different than the green & hilly  view I usually share with you from California…gorgeous!
Today I’ve been thinking about a very special man in my life…my grandfather, Rudger Smith, who started out as a sweet little farm boy back on this day—January 31st, in 1910…
In his mother’s words…”Heaven touched earth when we heard your first cry on that cold January day of 1910…”

The beautiful Victorian-style birth announcement postcard proudly sent out to friends and family by first-time parents Asahel and Pauline Smith…one of my very favorite things…

“Mother & son doing fine—son sends love to Aunt Pearl”, it says…wonderful!
 Asahel, Pauline, Rudger and Andrew Smith, about 1912
Here’s the new little family after son #2, Andrew,  came along in 1911…that’s my grandfather, Rudger on the left…it’s a good thing we don’t put our little guys in dresses anymore, isn’t it?!
Two little farm boy brothers…what a sweet moment caught on film so long ago…..
Rudger & Andrew, 1915
A new page made today for my heritage scrapbook…
Two wonderfully vintage images helped me out with my project…both from Crafty Secrets
This adorable farm boy stamp from the new “Down on the Farm” stamp set…I decided to leave it uncolored—just grunged it up a bit with “Vintage Photo” Distress Ink—trying to give it the feeling of an old sepia photo…
…and this sweet farm boy and poem image, from their new “Farm Life” Creative Scraps. 
I love to enlarge photos and cut out the people I’m focusing on for a layout…makes them feel very alive to me…
Some simple eyelet trim with vintage mother-of-pearl buttons, threaded through with jute cording…
…and a little farm-like “bouquet” at the bottom of the page…I wanted it to look like the hay these boys would have been VERY familiar with in working along with their father every day on the farm…a few vintage white blossoms thrown in and tied with a jute bow.   Very simple.
Rudger at the Udall house, 1920
Rudger a little older here…still a farm boy, through and through…
This is just a portion of the poem from the Crafty Secrets image above—by one of my favorite poets—John Greenleaf Whittier…here it is, a little bit easier to read…

The Barefoot Boy

Blessings on thee, little man,
Barefoot boy, with cheek of tan!
With thy turned-up pantaloons,
And thy merry whistled tunes;
With thy red lip, redder still
Kissed by strawberries on the hill;
With the sunshine on thy face,
Through thy torn brim’s jaunty grace;
From my heart I give thee joy,—
I was once a barefoot boy!
                                      --by John Greenleaf Whittier

Rudger Grant Smith--young man
And that barefoot boy turned into a very handsome young man…and later a husband, father…and the most wonderful grandfather anyone has ever had.
Always a twinkle in his eye when he saw me…always a big, warm bear hug with “Oh, my Jewels!” as my greeting…he never left me without a doubt that he loved me very much.
Precious time spent together…sharing a simple Sunday night meal of bread and milk that he loved since he was a humble farm boy…lovingly telling me the stories of our family that have become so important to me…
Rudger G. Smith
It hardly seems possible that he’s been gone now for  28 years…still very alive to me…and I was always so proud that my birthday was just the day before his…
Happy Birthday, Grandpa…I love you.



  1. What a sweet tribute to your wonderful grandfather and the pictures are all great!!
    Thank you for sharing!

  2. I have been sucked in by your blog. :) I'm a friend of Karen & Lyndsie...

    The way you capture and freeze-in-time these precious memories is so heart-warming. Thank you for sharing!
    ~Deanna in Idaho
    www ryandeannapoulsen dot blogspot dot com

  3. such a special post. happy birthday to your wonderful grandpa :)

  4. This is so great, Mom! Thanks for remembering all these stories and sharing them. Love you!

  5. what a beautiful post, julie. reading about your sweet grandpa with the twinkle in his eye brought a tear to my eye. how lucky you were to have him!


  6. What beautiful memories of your grandpa. Love your farm boy project!

  7. Hey Julie,

    Love the new blog look, very sweet. Happy Birthday to you and your grandpa. We just celebrated our youngest daughter's birthday yesterday, too. The layout is so amazing, what a tribute to family.


  8. Julie, I haven't been by in awhile but what a wonderful post this is! And happy birthday to YOU! Love this layout and the farm theme. Will go search out the stamp set you used!

  9. what a beautiful creation you've made to remember your grandpa by! i love the vintage illustrations from crafty secrets!!

  10. Dearest Julie,

    Read your sweet comment on Saskia's blog. Saskia and I are from the same Province Limburg, The Netherlands.
    I admire your fondness of family photos and stories, that shows you got a big heart! Indeed, our forefathers are the fabric of which we're made; a copy of their lives and hopefully a life as a role model.
    So good for having been able to see you parents and they're not as far away as mine... far and expensive. But that's life. We did however visit them 62 times already in 27 years so that's not bad. Others might have their beach house but we keep a big treasure inside our hearts.

    Lots of love,


  11. Hello Julie;
    What a Wonderful Post about Your Dear Grandfather! I Love what his Mother Said about him the Day he was Born. Thank you for Sharing this Lovely Post!

  12. Julie, So glad you had a great visit with your Momma & Daddy. You are so very lucky to have such a wonderful/close family. I love the stories you share about them. And I know what you mean about someone you love being gone a long time yet, it seems like just yesterday. ALSO, LOVE the new side design with the aqua & orange colors. Have a great week. We are buttoning down for a winter storm to hit us bringing 2" or more of snow tomorrow. YIKES! This is Texas what's the deal? HUGS!

  13. Hi sweet Julie, first I have to say, I love checks and I love, love, love your new background. It suits you so well! What a beautiful post as always. I just can't believe you have so many fabulous family photos, stories and history to share. You certainly come from a family that appreciated the written word and documenting their every day life. How fortunate you are! Blessings and best wishes, Tammy

  14. Oh Julie- Thank you so much for sharing these wonderful pictures and dear memories with us! I know he loved you so very much. How could he not?:) Lori

  15. Glad you had a great time, Julie! I have been doing the same thing with my vintage family photos. I make copies first, of course, and then cut out the people for collage and bookmaking. They do seem to "come alive"!
    Have a wonderful day, friend!

  16. I love how you do these wonderful layouts with pictures of people who you actually know and mean so much to you....priceless!!!

  17. Such great photos as always!! Your Grandfather sounds like he was a special man.
    Have a great day!

  18. Totally gorgeous, Julie--wow!!! I hope you had a Happy Birthday and enjoyed your trip too!
    This is one exquisite post!

  19. Fabulous Julie, as always. I love your stories and I love your page.
    I think the quote from your Great grandmother on the day your Grandpa was born is wonderful.
    Hope you had a great trip - the scenery is spectacular.
    Take care, lots of love, Anne X

  20. Hey! I've been reading your blog for a while and thought I'd finally say "Hi". I love the way you incorporate the old fam. photos with your every day life. I enjoy reading about your family ...and extended family! In fact, you've greatly inspired me to do the same with the trunkfulls (!) of old photos that have been collected in my family. I'm trying to post my results on my own blog. Thanks for your inspiration AND your crafty abilities!!!

  21. So awesome! Love that page! Where did he grow up? I was very close to my grandparents. Mine have been gone almost 40 years. I still miss them. Mimi

  22. What sweet little boys..and what a handsome man, I can see why you do this, you will really know your family well when you meet them on the other side won't you?! Love the cards and stories. :D


  24. What a wonderful heritage page! I need to do some layouts with the farm photos I have from my hubby's family. Thanks for the inspiration!

    Have a fabulous day, my friend, and happy belated birthday!

  25. Julie, you have to best memories and pictures collected in your scrap book.. what a treasure! and youre sooooo creative! I love to come visit your blog to see what youre up too.

  26. Julie your posts and creations always touch my heart!! I miss my grandfather, and I have loved the poem!!! Have a great week!

  27. What a great addition to your heritage album and the new stamp and scraps were just perfect for the job - beautiful! Hope your birthday was a good one!

  28. Ahhhhhh.....happy birthday to your sweet Grandpa my friend. oxxoxo Your heritage page is lovely!!! xoxoxo Hugs my friend. xoxo

  29. What a beautiful tribute to a well-loved man who happens to be your grandfather. I only wish I had had the opportunity to know my grandfathers. They both passed on before I was born.

  30. Oh Julie, What a wonderful page and tribute to your Grandfather. I Love the things they said in those days,"Heaven touched earth"
    Have you ever thought about having your blog made into a book, I saw on someones blog you can do that and its really reasonable, and you pick what you want in it. It would be such a keepsake for your family!
    So glad you enjoyed your visit with your family
    Hugs Lynn

  31. LOVE your style and what you do with cherished family photos! I have some that I need to work with and appreciate your inspiration. I love your tribute to your Grandfather too! My Pop-Pop passed away 8yrs ago, and I still remember his scrufty beard and smell of Ivory Soap and Camel cigarettes, and his big bear hugs as he called me "Yettle." Thanks for bringing back the memory! I just made a canvas for his wife, my 92 yr old grandmother, and I am thankful to still have her in my life!

  32. What a beautiful new addition to your scrapbook Julie! I love what you have done. You are so talented. I love how you combine your creativity with your family history. You are a star! Sorry I haven't been around much this week. I am starting to feel back to my old self now though. Love and hugs from windy England! xxoo

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