An Amazing Weekend of Memories
June 14, 2011 Leave a comment
Wow, what an amazing weekend. Last week I learned that Mom was having water troubles in her basement in Minot, and I started to think it was going to be an important time for me to go and help her. Andrew and I went to visit Grandma Frieda with a few goals in mind. The first goal was to make sure she was doing OK with her basement (she was, thankfully!) The second goal was to set the stage for her to move to Fargo, sooner rather than later. And now she finally is ready to make the move!!! Part of “the plan” was to start going through some of her stuff to help her be willing to part with some things that have no sentimental value. Much to my surprise, she took kindly to that plan.
But what I didn’t expect was the degree to which I was overwhelmed by all the nostalgia I would uncover. I really wasn’t prepared for that; it was such a pleasant surprise. A large part of me felt guilty for not having expressed a bigger interest in all the family history before. But I can’t rewind time, so I’ll be thankful for what I can now more fully appreciate. So … for all you young whippersnappers out there, start paying attention to your family heritage so you don’t regret it later!
Here is just a very small sampling of some of the wonderful discoveries that occurred last weekend. First, this picture was my absolute favorite discovery. It’s a photo of Dad’s parents’ wedding day, they’re the third and fourth in from the left. This photo was from 100 years ago, in 1911. Even though there aren’t many smiles in this photo (as I believe as customary for photos in this era) it looks like such a wonderfully happy photo!
Next up is a photo from Dad’s schooling at the Chicago Evangelistic Institute (later renamed Vennard college, which closed in 2008). I don’t know any of the details of this photo. I believe Dad can be found by looking at the right-most person in the front row, and then going straight up two more people. I can’t help but wonder how many lives have been touched as a result of the people trained at this institution.
Here’s a photo of the from Mom grew up on near Turtle Lake, ND. It just looks like a classic “let’s settle down and build America!” photo.
And here’s a photo of Mom’s family (Mom is in the back row, second from the right)
There were lots of books too, including this German Bible that belonged to Mom’s parents. The outside needs some care, but the inside is still in decent shape, considering its age.
Another “book” I was so happy to take possession of is Dad’s collection of sermons. I can’t wait to pore over all the sermons he produced, to learn more about his legacy. That will, no doubt, be the subject of future blog posts…
And finally, the weekend ended with us taking a trip to Dad’s grave, to add some grass seed and say a prayer with Mom. This was the first time I’ve seen Dad’s grave with his grave marker in place. The medallion on the upper-left corner of the grave marker commemorates his service to the United Methodist Church.
I have to say I was so proud of Andrew. He decided he needed to come with to help Grandma, and there was no changing his mind. He was such a good traveler, and he thoroughly enjoyed soaking in the history too … mostly by playing with my childhood toys. It’s nice to see the Erector set get some use again! Even though he didn’t move many boxes or pack mementos, he really did “help” Grandma in more ways than he’ll ever know. I really believe Andrew “helped” Grandma more clearly understand the reason she should come to Fargo.
Wow, what an amazing weekend of memories!