Wednesday, May 14, 2008


Happy Birthday Mother, May 14th, 1904

Mother, I wish you were here so we could celebrate your birthday with you like we always did in the past. But, I am sure you are having a wonderful Birthday, back in Dads arms where you always belonged. You lived 20 long years without him and now we have already lived 13 years without you. All your family was there waiting for you except for your two brothers and a few months ago one of you baby brothers joined you. Your youngest brother and his wife speak of you often and tell me how much they still miss those fun card games at your home.
I remember one time when we were playing crazy eights and you dozed off for a cat nap, like you often did. I noticed the plate clock up on the wall needed cleaning. So, while you slept I climb up and took down the clock and cleaned it and then replaced it. Hours later when you looked up to see what time it was, you mentioned that you could see the clock clearer and you wondered why. I told you I cleaned it and you asked how I could without you knowing. I told you I washed it while you were napping. I was always doing other little things when she napped during the games- such as washing the stove of, wiping down the front of the frig/freezer, and other such things. I remember the time you noticed the tea kettle was real shinny. I knew how hard it was for you to keep up so much in your 80`s. I hope I can do as well as you if I should live that long.

Another time it was New years Eve and Walt and I came down to spend the evening with you and we played cards. Every time Walt mentioned we should be heading home, you would say " You can play just one more game, can`t you? Well, that one more game lasted till 5am the next morning. Suddenly you said to us " You look tired, why don`t you both go upstairs and get some sleep? So, after playing crazy eights all evening and on thru the entire night, you still were going strong while Walt and I were playing half asleep. We did take you up on your offer because we didn`t think it wise to drive home feeling half awake. You must have been feeling more lonesome on that New Years Eve and I am glad we were able to make it a special night for you. If I remember correctly, I think most of the family was out dancing celebrating, like we usually did with some of them.

I wonder what it was like the day you were born. I know that Grampa ( your Dad)worked on the barge on the canal also know that Gramma wasn`t feeling well that day and didn`t want to stay home alone. So he took her to work with him. I was told that the big barge boat was going down the canal and stopped behind where the old cement works was located beside the canal. And that was where you were born on the barge that day. As far as I know there was only gramp and gram alone there to deliver you. Your parents must have done a great job as everything went along fine from what I heard over the years. I never heard if there was any Dr or midwife summoned to the barge. Wish I had thought to ask more questions about that special day.
The only other thing I did hear was that when your Birth was reported you hadn`t been named yet-- so you were listed only as "baby Thompson" and to this day that is still all that is on your birth certificate. I remember your Mom calling you Annie. But all my life you were known as Anne on all official documents like your School records, your Marriage certificate, etc..
I remember you once telling me that at the official office they told you you could choose any first name you liked and it would be legal-- the choice was up to you, since no first name was ever recorded on file. Must have felt strange to know you could use any name you preferred while others had to keep the name they were named at birth. Of course anyone can have their name changed if they want to go thru the legal steps to do it.

Now I am wondering ? Did Gram start you in school using the name Annie? If so, how old were you when you changed to using Anne? So many unanswered questions. Wish I had thought to ask them before. I am glad I remembered to ask you how and where you met our Father. Of course Aunt Daisy answered me before you had a chance to say a word. Maybe you would have told more about that first meeting at the friends birthday party. But, out of respect to your sister, I felt I couldn`t ask you more. I felt it would be looked at like I didn`t believe my Aunt and that wouldn`t have been nice. I know you were in High School when you father passed away and that the funeral was held there at home. I remember you telling me how hard it was having to pass the casket every time you went up stairs to your bedroom. I remember when a friends funeral was held at their home. You wished they hadn`t as you felt the teen aged daughter would never be able to get that memory out of her head since you couldn`t erase the memory of your father in the casket and it stayed with you the rest of your life. Guess people didn`t have the money for the Funeral parlor back then and did the best they could afford.

Well Mother, Happy Birthday to you. You are loved and missed so much by all of us. I love you dearly and you may be gone, but you will never be forgotten.

Recording these memories in this way is such a wonderful way of passing along the stories of our life for our friends and family to hang on to.
Thanks Onedia. I print off each post and comments and keep them in 3 ring notebooks for the Family to read if they wish to, I have always wished I had asked My mom and Dad more questions about their childhood and how they managed during the depression, and so much more. Thanks for stopping by my blog. You are welcome here any time. Wishing you all the best.
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