Wednesday, October 13, 2010

30 Day Blog Challenge - Day 8

Day 8 - A Photo That Makes You Angry/Sad

This was hard for me. I usually avoid what makes me angry or sad.

I ended up picking this picture. While it makes me feel sad, it also makes me feel proud. I guess it counts anyway!

This picture is a copy of an original. I had to have a copy as soon as I saw it. It's my Grandpa Don and Great-Grandpa Jack just back from a fishing trip, likely about the time when Great-Grandpa Jack was just beginning to build the family cabin. I love it because I never really knew either of them like this - young, spry, and almost cheeky. Also I love it because of all that's unspoken in this photo: it's two of my forefathers likely returning from the cabin they built with their own hands. I can fully imagine the smell as well - these men likely haven't bathed in a few days, and the fish have likely been sitting in an unlucky container of some sort that was full of ice and will probably will never smell the same again. Also, this picture is in front of the house my great-grandpa bought for $700 and dug out a basement in. (Yes, you read that right. He dug out a basement in an existing house. And, in case you are curious, that house is STILL STANDING.) If there ever was an "Old Homestead" - this is it.

This photo makes me sad because my grandpa died very young (when I was 8) and all I really remember of him is his voice. It sounded a lot like my great-grandpa's voice (he died in 2003 at the age of 98 - almost 99.) The fact that Grandpa Don died so young is always overshadowed in my mind by the blessing that my great-grandpa lived to be so old. But it makes me sad in my heart. I don't remember much of how sad everyone was at my Grandpa's funeral, but I remember all too well (enough to bring me to tears as I type) the sadness at my Great-Grandpa's funeral. These men sure are missed.

I feel almost bad sometimes because my sister often refers to me as "the only one of the cousins that even remembers Grandpa Don". Wow, have I done all my cousins an injustice - only really remembering his voice! Photos help me stir those past memories a little better, but I wish I could remember more.

This journal entry is especially relevant today because I have been doing a little research into my family history this week. Someone (I think it was my mother-in-law or one of the folks on Cory's side of the family) gave me a "Family Tree" book for Christmas, and I am determined to fill it out as completely as I can with as much info as I can gather from both Cory's family and mine. This year I also have been collecting family recipes from both sides for my daughter to have when she's older.

History, and preserving it, is important to me. I didn't major in it for nothing (although I bet my dad and my husband would probably beg to differ on that point.) I have always felt like it's my unspoken duty to collect and preserve information and items from my family history. I hope I have enough history collected and in my own head to make a real dent in that book . . . hmmm. I may need a bigger book!

Until next time . . .

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