|Grandpa Warren and his "silly goose"|
|Grandma Fern reading to me|
I think about them a lot. They were all farmers in rural central Illinois. Corn, beans, horses, cows, pigs, chickens. Hard work, hard lives. My Grandma Gerda, before she married Warren in the early '30s, grew up in a small house on a dairy farm ("Leafy Lane Dairy") with her 10 siblings. My Grandpa Herb was one of nine kids, a Mennonite family. I don't know much about my other two grandparents, Grandma Fern (she went with Herb, naturally), and Grandpa Warren.
I could stare at pictures of them for hours.
|Me with Grandma Gerda|
|Grandma, my brothers, and me|
I especially love old photographs of my grandparents.
|Gpa Herb's family; the guy who looks like Harry Potter is Herb|
|Herb & Fern's engagement photo ca. late 1920's|
|Gpa Herb. What do they do at retirement homes these days?|
|Me, my dad, Gpa Herb, brother, early '90s (like my shades?)|
Even though I sometimes wish I could have been closer to my grandparents, at times I feel a connection to them that goes beyond head knowledge. There are mysterious things they've passed on to me, deeper than their DNA.
Likes, dislikes, loves, passions, dreams, convictions--I am convinced I've inherited some of these as well. Hard work and simplicity, peace-loving loyalty, a connection to the land, building your life with your own two hands, faith, family, books, creativity. These are the eternal, inherited blessings from my grandparents.