What’s the Meaning of This?

When you have an alliterative name, it’s tempting for people to call you by your initials. My grandmother got into the habit of calling me “Bee,” and she even sewed two little bees on a purple dress she made for me when I was small. That’s how the industrious insect became shorthand for me.

Thanks to my library card, I frequently consult the Oxford English Dictionary for refined, interesting definitions of words. When it came to “bee,” it didn’t disappoint.  I’m a busy worker, and hopefully a sweet writer too. Here’s my favorite illustrative example from the OED’s entry: “How doth the little busy bee improve each shining hour!,” from Isaac Watts’ Divine & Moral Songs.

Rare book librarians use the term “First Appearance” to describe the first time an author appears in print, or the first time a specific writing of an author shows up in a magazine or newspaper. This is my “First Appearance” writing online.

As for the illustration in the header, that’s from my Artist Aunt’s depiction of me after school one day in first grade, striking a common pose outside my grandparents’ front door.

Follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/Bee_A_Librarian.

Betsy Butler
Columbus, Ohio

9 Responses to What’s the Meaning of This?

  1. it’s a charming little painting, and a charming introduction to a very well-put-together site.

  2. As a beekeeper I think ‘Bee’ is a great name!

  3. lifeandlims says:

    How neat! Family history, Temple Square, books, Ohio… my own family history is centered in Ohio, and some in Columbus, and I was a missionary at Temple Square. I enjoyed the choir and the gardens regularly. Sadly, I learned absolutely nothing about the planters or the flowers.

  4. Joy Kiser says:

    Dear Betsy,

    Thank you for your lovely article about my book. Sincerely, Joy M. Kiser

  5. Claire Frances Heinmiller Parson says:

    Hi! I just stumbled across this and will have to share with the family. Claire Heinmiller Parson – Tom’s daughter. I love the coffee cake recipe post and will now have to go through it all. Do you by chance have it handwritten, I would love a copy. Claire

  6. Chris Gonzales says:

    Hello Betsy… I found your site when I saw the article on the Nordic Needle email Newsletter 07/25/2015. Did you stitch the Eliz Bradley rug? I would like to know how you put the squares together; any special technique? I would like to needlepoint a rug, too, but am hesitating because of the pieces that need stitched together. Did you follow the Eliz Bradley book when you did this? I do have her book and read her instructions….thanks for any advice or experiences you have had putting this together! Chris

  7. Chris Gonzales says:

    PS… I live in North Canton, Ohio 🙂

  8. Alli Shaw says:

    Hello! I don’t know if anyone will receive this or not but I found this article while googling Thomas’ daughter’s full name! How awesome! We’d like to invite you to Ed Thomas’ 126th birthday party at Clear Creek Metro Park THIS Saturday, April 22nd. This is terribly late notice but I just found this blog 10 mins ago. We will be at the Mathias Cabin at 1pm on Saturday and giving tours to the Thomas Cabin and having cake! There will be tons of historical documents on hand. Would LOVE to have you there!!! If you have questions, you can call Marcey Shafer, Clear Creek/Scioto Grove Naturalist at 740 Or you can call me at 614-865-4507. My name is Alli and I’m the naturalist at Sharon Woods MP where Thomas’ State Nature Preserve is located. My number is 614-865-4507 should you have questions but I’m going to be at Clear Creek on Saturday so won’t be around. Program information is at http://www.metroparks.net Thank you for the wonderful information about Dr. Thomas! I saw some new info!!

  9. Lauren says:

    Dear Betsy,

    I saw an article you wrote about gene Stratton porters home in Rome city. We live in a home that was built for her sister, Ada, which includes a pudding stone fireplace and an inscription by G.S.P. –

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