I’ve been posting snapshots from years past to this blog to create an online family photo album for my mom and siblings in California and my kids in the Midwest. I’ve gone from 1985-2006 in 15 posts. I’ve gone through all my photo books and boxes of loose prints, and I think I’ve gotten all the best ones converted to digital images.
I did come across a couple that I want to add here, even though they’re out of sequence. These are pictures of my kids in places of historical significance to our family, proving that I did teach them something about our particular “heritage”. For instance, this sacred natural place just blocks from the first house I lived in…
…and this one of the beach where 4 generations of our family have vacationed… …and where my husband and I met up with my parents’ longtime friends.
Now, back to the chronology. In January of 2007, I took a trip out to California alone to visit the family. Things were pretty hectic back in the Midwest with two kids in college, two in high school, and a husband on kidney dialysis. Escaping to the Bay Area to soak up some family love and laughter (and a couple of bottles of Hecker Pass kissing wine!) helped.
Visiting my father was a high priority, even though he did not remember or respond to me.
Watching my mother care for him was a great lesson to me. I figured I’d be walking in her footsteps as a caretaker for my ailing husband, but I had no way of knowing that I’d be widowed the next year.
Before that happened, we had a few more exciting family events. In April, Emily starred in Seussical. Her Aunt Maggie and cousins James and Dylan from her dad’s side of the family flew out to see the show.
In June, Rebecca graduated from High School and Susan gave her Senior Voice Recital and got her college diploma from Lawrence University.
GranneLouise, Uncle David, and Aunt Sarah came out for the ceremony in Wisconsin and then drove to meet us for a reunion at the beach cottage on the other side of Lake Michigan.
That final vacation with my husband is full of bittersweet memories. I’m so grateful that both my families were there to share it with me and to remind me that we were together in all of the simultaneous beginnings and endings of that summer.
This online family photo album is all about visits between my family on the West Coast and my family in the Midwest. So far, I’ve chronicled 1985 through 2000.
In the summer of 2001, we took a road trip to the East Coast. While we were away, my mother-in-law passed away in her apartment. Three months later, the World Trade Center towers were attacked. We did not visit with our California family that year.
The next summer, though, we had a marvelous visit! I found a trove of photos of the gang of seven cousins enjoying the Bay Area and each other. Here we are at the San Francisco zoo:
(I know I took one that has all the grandkids together on this beach plus Jim and John and Sarah, too, but I can’t seem to find it.) * My sister Sarah found it!
…and bumming around San Francisco.
And as if that wasn’t enough, we also spent time hiking and horseback riding in the Sierra Nevadas near Mammoth Lakes with the grandparents. I’ll share those pictures in the next post.
Such a sweet deal having relatives to visit in northern California!
This online family photo project allows me to pool and share snapshots with my children here in the Midwest and my family of origin in California. Yesterday, my sister in San Francisco sent more photos of our visits up to the year 2000.
I love her caption to this one: “desperate characters skulk at the airport –in 1995, way before TSA”