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The Heart of Humor - Guest Blogger Jeanette Levellie

By Rebecca Price Janney, Aug 14 2018 05:26PM

Last week my new author friend, Jeanette Levellie invited me to guest blog for her, and this week I get to return the favor by featuring an excerpt from her book, The Heart of Humor. It’s a letter to her tech-savvy granddaughter about the way things were when Jen was growing up.

She has published four books, dozens of magazine articles and stories, greeting card verses, and calendar poems, and she enjoys speaking to church and civic groups, specializing in hope and humor. Jeanette and her pastor-husband Kevin live in Paris, IL. She describes herself as the mother of two, grandmother of three, and servant to four cats! You can find her “mirthful musings” at and if you’d like to buy a copy of The Heart of Humor, here’s the link:

The Way We Were

Dear Granddaughter:

Since you asked about “the olden days,” I thought you’d enjoy a written account of the primitive conditions in which Grandpa and I grew up.

Since Facebook hadn’t been invented, meeting people and making friends was a complicated process. It involved rituals like talking to someone, shaking their hand, and asking them questions about their interests.

We lowered and raised our car windows by cranking a handle attached to the inside door of the car. We opened the car doors with keys, and were forced to lock them by pushing a button down by hand!

Garage doors could only be opened and closed manually, with a handle on the front. We had to get out of the car, walk to the garage, and open or close it ourselves.

TVs in the dark ages had no remote controls. We got up from the couch and walked across the room to change the channel or turn the volume down with a knob attached to the front of the TV set. We had no couch potatoes in those days, either.

When we used telephones, we had to dial the other person by poking our finger into numbers in a round piece of plastic on the front of the phone. We even talked to the person on the other end.

We also sent messages to friends with items called “letters,” written with devices named “pens,” on sheets of paper, and put them in a blue box on a street corner. They were sorted and sent in a truck to our friends’ houses. Sometimes they took days to arrive!

I know this has shocked you, and you’re amazed that we survived. But people in the olden days were tougher. Without Facebook, remotes and texting, we had to be.

With love,

Your Savvy Grandma

Cartoon by Ron Levellie - Used by Permission
Cartoon by Ron Levellie - Used by Permission
Aug 14 2018 05:33PM by Jeanette Levellie

Thanks for having me today, on my birthday! I had so much fun writing The Heart of Humor, and wanted to share it with your readers!
Grace, hope, and an ice cream cone, Jen

Aug 14 2018 05:48PM by Rebecca

Well, happy birthday to you Jen! I'm glad I could celebrate with you. I enjoyed your letter to your granddaughter. Keep us laughing, and hoping. Rebecca

Aug 16 2018 01:36PM by pat jeanne davis

Happy Belated Birthday, Jen. I can relate to so much of what you write here on "the olden days" I hear myself saying the same words to the younger members of my family

Aug 16 2018 02:53PM by Rebecca

Don't worry! Someday they will be in the same boat with their kids and grandkids.

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