Sunday, January 13, 2019

My Belief in God changed very, very slowly!

My baptism took place in 1956, a very long time ago! (See https://anordinarychinese.blogspot.com/2011/08/ for details.) I decided to be baptized because I liked "church music". Nothing moved my emotions more than church music! I was not worried, at the time, about whether I believed in the teachings of the Church. It was much later that I started to consider the concept of "faith in God" and to question whether or not I could believe in a Supreme Being. When I was in Taiwan, the choir was the only thing in the church in which I was interested. (Below is the first colored picture I have from that time.)
 My thinking about these issues changed gradually, and I drifted away from the teachings of the Church. I began to question the very existence of God. The Civic Chorale fulfilled my desire to sing beautiful music and I slowly changed my focus so that church music became less important. By the middle of the 1980s, I no longer believed much of what was said on the church podium. Singing in the Chorale widened my interst in the types of music which I could enjoy and I became more involved in the chorale activities. "Hiking" also brought fulfilment of my desire to become one with Nature! I came to the decision that "God" could be found in many places - or no place at all,  certainly not just only in a church, and that different people can come to different understandings of the nature of "God".

Friday, January 11, 2019

Remembering a very kind relative, Florence Crossland

There were quite a few events which occurred in our lives during 1985. Some were huge and complicated, including one big China trip which involved the whole family and which was reported separately elsewhere on the net. (Please see http://jat.esmartweb.com/china-1985/china_1985.htm for details.) Here, today, I want to report on a "small" trip which we took to see one of our favorite relatives, Janice's aunt  Florence Crossland, whom we always called Aunt Flo. It turned out that that trip was the last one we took together to see her, as she passed away not too long afterwards. From time to time, even now, we think of her and remember the love and kindness which she always showed us. She is deeply missed. She participated in many activities with our family whenever we visited the Boston area. For example, when my Father came to visit Boston and the Cape in 1972, she greeted him warmly. The following pictures were the last two pictures taken with her during our visit in 1985. At that time she was living on the Cape with her daughter, Marjorie. She was very alert and certainly happy to see us! 


Janice wants to add a few details about Aunt Flo's life: She was the youngest sister of Janice's Grandmother. Part of a family with 9 children, they grew up in Truro, Nova Scotia, in Canada. They had an older sister Sarah, who became a Sister of Saint Joseph and taught first grade in Quincy, Massachusetts, for more than 40 years! Flo married William Crossland after she came to the U.S. They had only one daughter, Marjorie. Uncle Bill's work took him to various parts of the country. In 1942, when Janice was born, he was working in Tennessee, where Janice's Father was also working at the time, at Holston Defense since it was during the Second World War. Later Flo and Bill lived in Richland, Washington for several years. They eventually returned to the East Coast. Janice remembers visiting them in Holyoke, Massachusetts. She and her sister would take the train down from Winchester and stay for a few days. Aunt Flo always provided many wonderful activities for the 2 girls during their visits! Later, after they settled in Winchester, Janice and her family were able to see Flo and Bill frequently. Sadly, Uncle Bill passed away in 1963. For a while Aunt Flo lived in a home run by Catholic nuns. However, she later decided to live with Marjorie on Cape Cod. 

Sunday, January 6, 2019

The Adjustments of Young and Old!

My mother passed away in the spring of 1984 and my father came to live with us. Less than a year later, both the young and the old members of the Huang family had smoothly and effortlessly adjusted to this new arrangement. Father adapted to the American life quickly and was comfortable with everyone. He became part of Steven's life naturally - without a hitch! They laughed together and even slept at the sametime, as shown in the pictues below:

Margaret helped him to become familiar with Ameican life in all aspects, including her favorite holiday, Haloween:
Most amazingly, a small dog came to join our family. Here she is, getting a bath for the first time. She was certainly loved by some members of Huang family!



Friday, November 16, 2018

Visiting Scholars

In 1985, China not only opened wide their doors to allow visiting graduate students to study in the US, but also urged quite a number of their professors in the Science Departments to visit the USA, with all expenses paid by China. ETSU was lucky enough to get two of the Chemistry Professors from Wuhan University, one of the top ten Universities in the whole country: Professors Lin and Yin. They were in Physical and Analytical Chemistry, respectively. They chose to come to ETSU as we had two professors, Dr. ChuNgi-Ho and myself,  who could communicate in Chinese with them to facilitate their work. The official press anouncement picture of the four of us was sent out in a black and white picture from
 ETSU as shown below:
I certainly took more pictures of them, not only on campus but also in front of our house, when they came to visit us with one of our graduate students from Wuhan, their home town. 


 

Monday, November 5, 2018

An unexpected fun sport for us--- Water Skiing

After we bought the cabin on the lake, we, of course, went swimming whenever we felt warm enough to dive into the clear nice water. Of course, we had plenty of parties for our children and their friends. We had them on many occasions for a variety of reasons. I don't even remember what the reason for Margaret's party in the picture below was! They were having a great time! Soon it occurred to us that we could try water skiing. It was just the right time, as our kids were both at the right age. We bought a used boat and they quickly learned how to ski - all by themselves, literally! Almost immediately they were standing behind the boat and riding the waves. Oh, yes, we had a lot of fun! I was by then over fifty years old but I decided to give it a try myself. I hung on to the tow line a few times and was pulled through the water. However, believe it or not, I did finally get up and found myself skiing - just having fun like all the teens! For the next five years, whenever our kids were home during the summer, skiing was a major part of our activities on the lake. The pictures below were all taken during the time when we all tried to learn how to ski. Of course we also had to swim quite a bit during those times.




 



Friday, November 2, 2018

Our Favorate Scene!

Over the next three decades, the following scene became one of our favorites. The shots I took of this scene became a must for all our visitors. I will post seasonal pictures of this scene below. Since there are seldom severe winters in Tennessee, I never got a good winter shot. So I cannot show you what it looks like in the winter time! Spring and fall were the longest seasons there, as you will see:
Spring Time
Fall Time

Of course, most of our activities were centered aroud the summer. So with the help of my stockroom worker, Walt, I built a staionary platform on the shoreline, in preparation for the summer, as shown below:

Summer Time

We used this dock not only for boats, but for all shore parties and a lot of other activities such as jumping fancy jumps!

Friday, September 7, 2018

We bought a piece of Land on Watauga Lake

In 1984, I went to see a piece of land on Watauga Lake. The real estate agent told me that a widowed lady had a big plot of land for sale. I asked the sales person to inquire if the lady would agree to sell me just a small part of it. I would be willing to pay for a new surveyor's expense. It was agreed, so I had it surveyed, and we mapped out a total of six acres, with about 150 yards of shore line included. I bought that piece of land with the small cabin on the property. Since the building was not winterized, we did not get to use it until spring of 1985, when the weather was warm enough and before we went on our China trip. We had quite a number of visitors and we certainly started to enjoy the water as often as we could be there. The pictures below are the early pictures taken of our visits there:

This is our cabin: 

 Our first cook-out:

On the water:

Many friends came to visit:





  The front of the cabin!

Our kitchen:

Our family all enjoyed
the place: