Wednesday, August 26, 2009


Hi sis...I'm crying as I type this..I have NO
interest infighting or arguing with you...
i wouldn't have gotten in touch with mike for that...
i miss you horribly; i know you don't talk
to shirley ...she won't talk to me either...but this is
about us, not her, not anyone else...
Just a reminder...we choose our friends...we choose our in the stars...
and I must admit i had no idea how hard
looking at the pic of mini would hit me...
barry silverman to me: 8.25.09
i'm lonely & miserable..

Minnie Rutstein  Liepovitz, Russia how old ?

Tuesday, August 25, 2009


Michael Robinett to me

From: barry
To: michael
Date: Sun, 23 Aug 2009 01:53:34 -0400

tell her I miss her...tell her I miss being someones baby brother...

Big Sister Carol to Baby Brother Barry
THIS IS A MAJOR FAMILY DRAMA: As the Sandler/Silverman Family Turns
dear barry,
imagine my surprise to hear from Michael that he heard from you........i love how you signed the first email, 'carol's idiot brother'........that's encouraging......I say this with the highest respect.
After 10 years, out of the blue......
I need you to know how much I have been hurt by your rejection. I tried to talk to you ten years ago when I moved back here but you were having none of it. That is still very painful. i feel hurt by a lot of things that happened ten years ago; i can't just pick up as though nothing happened; i need to be treated with respect; i have Value.......+ we have to would be good if we could really talk and then move on.....
I miss you too + I am open to the idea of re-establishing a relationship with you but I need you to know what my needs are; I am going to be 60 years old soon. I am tired. I have lines + wrinkles (my appt. with dr. 90210 is pending.....), + I am definitely too tired, out -of -juice to argue + fight + NOT TALK.......that is a very bad Sandler trait that is still alive + well. Now i would much rather have cordial relations than using energy to NOT TALK.....but no more drama....
We really have a lot to talk about, a conversation that only you and I can have because of our shared experience.......
If my voice is different, maybe because I am a different person than I was ten years ago. Today everybody treats me with respect otherwise they are off my list.
Did you ever hear the expression " treat your friends like your family + your family like your friends " ?
I have completed three years of therapy with a trauma therapist trained in EMDR, Eye Movement De-sensitization Revisualization...........this technique was developed during and after the Vietnam war for veterans coming home with PTSD, Post-traumatic Stress Disorder. I have learned new ways of dealing with my Anger and I live in a yelling-free zone. I'm just exhausted from everything that we had to deal repeating the past......
So, if you want to explore having a relationship with the understanding that no one gets treated badly, you have to say how you feel out loud, everybody gets treated with respect and love and caring, good. I don't care how sappy that sounds.
I talked to Aunt Ruth today and she said my voice sounds like it always did......
what say you ? too high maintenance ?
OK, so that's the family drama I needed to say.......
I miss you too. I have a lot of photos of you as a kid, in the backyard in Malden, with Ron in Harvard Square + with Michael in Cambridge......
What's going on with you ?
How are you doing ?
What are you doing ?
If you still want to talk after reading this, call me..... i look forward to hearing from you.

Monday, August 17, 2009


These are some of the photos I used to look at in the black, old fashioned photograph album with the pictures stuck into the little triangle corners pasted to the black pages.

My Aunt Ruth sent me this four generation family photo. My Boby is on the left, cousin Barbara, 16 months, Aunt Ruth and my great grandmother, Hannah Rutstein, who I do not really remember. 

1945,  c.1222 Blue Hill Ave., near Wilson St. facing Greendale Rd.

My mother Shirley Sandler, in her gold lame bathing suit, Nantasket or Wallaston Beach, pre-1950;

carol, 3 weeks old, 1950

shirley and carol, 1950


After school on Friday I would go to Boby's house for Shabbos.  My mother and I met up there. She came after work. Just Boby and I would be there when I watched her light the Shabbos candles at sunset time. Her candlesticks looked just like this picture, very typical 'Polish Brass Sabbath Candelabra, 18th century.'

Sunday, August 16, 2009


Roby sent me a copy of this letter Boby wrote to him and his family in 1962........

Dear Children ! Roby, Toby, Ellen, Jeffrey,

We got your nice letter and of course very

glad to hear everything is fine, as for us

we are fine too. I went to the club

last night again, of course not walking

a friend of ours picked us up and we had

a very pleasant evening, after I finish writing

the letter I am going to lay down to rest

a little. I keep my fingers crossed and I

try. I am very proud of Ellen, Jeffrey that

they love school and they are good in school

I only hope they keep it up. I am for education

a 100%. The weather isn't cold but it was

raining yesterday. It cleared up by late afternoon

rained all night; it's trying to clear up again.

That's all for now. your loving, ma pa
with kisses Boby Zaidy

regards from
Ruthie's family
Shirley Caroll


According to my notes of 5.26.97 from talking to Roby on the phone, he told me Rivkeh (Rose) Sandler walked into the ocean and died. She was the youngest Sandler, Zaidy's sister. She committed suicide. Roby told me "....she was congenial, spritely, happy and outgoing....." his memories of her as a teenager. She never married.

I just spoke to my Aunt Ruth. She told me that she was named after Zaidy's mother, Rochel who was called 'Ruth'. She also told me that Zaidy's sister Zelda named her daughter 'Ruth' after her mother too and that Boby was very angry about that because she had named HER daughter 'Ruth' first ! Aunt Ruth is older than Zelda's Ruth.


Many, many years ago, I deluged my uncle Roby with questions about the history of the Sandler family. Where did they come from ? What happened in Russia ? What happened at 48 Harlem Street in 

Dorchester growing up with Boby and Zaidy ? What was that like ? I 
have letters from him saying, I am very busy, but I will get to your questions, and he did. Here are three genealogical charts he put together for me. At the top is a chart showing Boby, Minnie Rutstein (Raigorodsky) married Morris I. Sandler on Auguest 15, 1920. Below that is a chart showing Boby's family whose maiden name was Minnie Raigorodsky. Upon arrival at Ellis Island, the name was changed to Rutstein. Below is a chart showing Zaidy's parents, Zina Sandler and Rachel Ring who did not come to America. The notes in pencil are mine while talking to Roby on the phone.


Many, many years ago, I asked my uncle Roby for information on the background of the Sandler family. He sent me a lot of material - here is a map showing where my grandparents, Boby and Zaidy came from. Boby came from Lipovitz and Zaidy came from Shepetovka, both small towns in the Pale of Settlement area near Kiev.

Saturday, August 15, 2009


When I was a little girl, my mother and I went to my grandmother's house every Friday night for Shabbos. Those Friday nights are among my earliest memories, going to Boby's house where I knew I would be eating a delicious meal, chicken soup with knaidelach, homemade, chicken, and always some delicious baked dessert. I remember Boby had burn marks on her arms from reaching into the oven and pulling out the baking pan. I loved going there because Boby's rule was " yelling allowed". It was an oasis of calm for me. Also, my grandfather, my Zaidy made a deal with me (at age 8 ! ); I wanted to watch Twilight Zone and he wanted to watch the Friday night fights and they were both on at the same time. My Zaidy and I compromised, one week I got to watch Twilight Zone, one week he watched Boxing. One thing I always did was, when my mother and Boby were in the kitchen washing the dishes, I would be in the living room looking at her photograph album, the old fashioned kind, black, with black pages and pictures inserted into the little corners, with a title written in white ink. It was fascinating to me to see pictures of my mother when she was young, a teenager. All the Jewish holidays were celebrated in Boby's house, my aunt Ruth, my cousin Kenny, sometimes, my cousin Barbara and from out of town, I remember Uncle Bob and cousin Ellen visited. When Boby died, everything changed. No more going to her house on Friday nights. The photograph album was taken apart, the pictures scattered, as was the family. I want to recreate the photograph album. I want to put it back together.

On the Jewish holidays, Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippor, we walked to Shul, the Woodrow Avenue shul. I walked up the stairs, entered the vestibule, turned left and walked up the stairs to the women's section in the balcony. There was my grandmother, sitting in the first row and everybody moved over to make room for me to sit next to her. I thought it was the best seat in the house, because 'we were closer to God' and because I had a perfect, unobstructed view of everything going on downstairs, better than the men downstairs sitting in the middle or the back of the prayer hall.