18 comments on “My Grandmother’s Boys

  1. Shannon always did say that Nana remarked, she would rather raise 10 boys, than one girl. I guess boys were easier. Possibly she mellowed out as she got older, I remember her saving me dimes and giving them to me when we visited her at the nursing home, but she did always say where’s my baby, referring to you. Shannon’s theory on the “Dutchman” nickname was because of the blue delft items Nana had, I don’t know how accurate that might be.

    • Thanks for the positive feedback. These pictures are provoking a lot of memories. I will try to share some while still not making the blog into the “Dead Relative Society”

  2. Sometimes it’s difficult to fathom the olds days. I took my father to a new doctor last week and was filling out paper work. I was taken aback when I had to write the birthdate down as 1913. Sometimes I’m fearful that my father will outlive my brother and me.
    Interesting story and so much to learn.

    • No scenario is necessarily better than another. My parents and only sibling are gone. It is a blessing that I never needed to confront long-term-care nor end-of-life issues with/for them. At the time, even though we had our struggles, it is nice to be connected to a family. Their absence is felt at times.

  3. Yet another fascinating story. I like your blog because it is about real life. You’re not afraid to share your life. Each of us has a fascinating history. I don’t know why, but so many bloggers are either unable or unwilling to open up about their personal life. Again, you have given me more ideas about future blog postings. I never knew any of my grandmothers. I only know one grandfather and he was a Jevohah Witness so we avoided him as much as possible since he was always trying to convert us. Of course their is much more to my family history (fascinating just as yours was) that I will share in future my future blog postings. Ironically, my Mother always wanted a girl. She had three boys. My father had no sisters but ten brothers. Both of my brothers wanted boys, they both had two girls first. My one brother finally had one boy but he died at birth. My other brother finally had a boy and of course he dotes on him and my nephew is a fine fellow. My nephew has two girls, no sons. Family history, always interesting. Thanks for sharing!

    • Thanks for the comment. When I decided to start blogging I was talking with a friend about the issue of self-disclosure. I can be a little rigid in my boundaries around things I consider private. {That is actually quite an understatement.] I was wondering how I would communicate honestly without being uncomfortably revealing. It is interesting for me to be blogging while I explore all these old family photos.

      • I really agree with Ron here. I love reading all kinds of blogs, but its the ones that are very personal and open that are the most compelling. I had the same concerns when I started blogging. I quickly figured out I did not want to hold anything back and wanted to put as much of myself out there as possible so I could build some real connections with people. That was my purpose. It took a little longer to figure out that I do not have the strength or constitution for negative comments, and made the decision to go private in order to keep writing as openly as I wanted to.

        Thank you for pointing the way to this post. It’s fascinating. I have a hard time with imagining spending my life with someone that I wasn’t in love with, and who was not in love with me. This is an amazing glance into a different time through someone else’s eye. It makes you think about a lot of things.

      • Thanks for your comment. I credit you for the level of candor and self-disclosure in your blog. You are braver than I.

        I spoke with a friend about the difference between being “honest” and being “revealing” when I was thinking about blogging. My commitment to myself (and to anyone who reads Harper’s Valley) is to be honest in everything I write. I have no specific expectation about how revealing that becomes. My partner was blogging for 6 yrs before I started and we have had a few disagreements over the years about things he wrote that I thought were too invasive of our privacy. Now that I am blogging as well I need to make that decision for myself.

        I have written a couple posts that pushed the boundaries of my comfort zone regarding privacy. I have not had any negative experiences but neither do I feel any pressing need to expand those boundaries. I am a newbie. I have been blogging less than 3 months so I am sure my views will develop. For now, I am doing fine talking about the distant past, current events, some attempts at humor and, of course, life with Harper.

      • I think you’ve found a nice balance. I’ve been reading a few bloggers for a lot longer than I’ve been reading you, still I feel like I know you a little better than I do them because you are more personable in your writing. I never thought about the revealing vs honest idea before. You’re right.

        I’m in the same situation with my husband regarding privacy. But it’s odd and extreme. For one thing I’m being extra open and out there because I don’t have a lot of a friendship life away from this medium, the way someone like you has. Chris has more of a reason to be extremely private and guarded than most people because of his past. We both try to be sensitive to the other’s needs. My taking the blog private was a huge sigh of relief for him. Still, he will out of no where ask me to take something down that he just doesn’t want out there. I always oblige. Most of those things involve our sex life. Chris can also be very jealous and nervous. Even though it doesn’t have anything directly to do with me, it’s part of my responsibility now to make sure he’s accommodated and comfortable. I think it’s working out well so far.

        I’m not surprised, and I’m also very glad, that you have not had any negative experiences from blogging. That’s how it should be.

  4. Sometimes I feel conspicuous for being nostalgic based on my parents’ memories, this having to do with feeling I don’t have legitimate claim to their ‘era’. Then I look at the garb I’m wearing in my First Grade school photograph, and realize I look like Jem and Scout Finch;-) Once gone, you cease to have existed at all when the people who actually knew you go, so I’m going to keep supposing bundling my parents’ memories with my own is a very good thing. You are quite the artist at blogging.

    • I agree that bundling is a good thing. The more collective memory that can be preserved, even if only in our own minds, the better. Thanks for the compliment about blogging I am finding it both challenging and enjoyable.

      …. and thanks for the ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ reference. Harper Lee is always welcome in Harper’s Valley. 🙂

    • She told me he was injured playing baseball resulting in his death. I may have concluded it was a head injury. His death certificate says is he was treated from 5/22/15 – 5/31/15 and died from “pyuria” (not pyria; the gum disease); which, without getting too graphic, is an indication of infection. Unfortunatley, since it happened almost 100 yrs ago, I don’t think I am going to be able to learn much more than that.

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