Tuesday, July 31, 2018

The End of July

During these past few days my obnoxious children have been texting back and forth unflattering pictures of the oldest female sibling.  I have divided up the family photos— well, most of them— a never-ending project. There are numerous photos going the rounds which my children, now they are all grown up, wish had never been taken.

So here’s the photo of Kate I am posting on this her fiftieth birthday. How well I re-member the day she was born. Ernie had been teaching summer school and was working on grading when I announced that it was time to go to hospital. He announced the grades were late and he intended to finish them and hand them over to his chair before we left. It worked out fine and we parked Al with a friend and off we went. Catherine Mary was a pretty large baby and Catherine Mary sounded like a pretty fragile name, so we landed up calling her Katie, until in later years she became Kate. Here she is with her youngest, Eleanor. Eleanor came after three strapping boys, and legend has it that when she was born, there was much weeping on the part of the neighbors! Here Eleanor is at the ceremony marking the end of 8th grade. Next year it will be High School, and she has announced she too will change, or at least shorten, her name.

Kate makes good use of her hands, her head and her heart. Cooking, sewing, knitting, running a training program at the university, teaching Pilates, being the daughter of aging parents and mother to two college students and two children in high school come easily to her. She and Ron work in unison to see that everyone is chauffeured, organized, fed and loved. No small accomplishment.

I too have been rummaging through old photos, only to discover that my scanner isn’t working. Again. So even if I wanted to include the unflattering photos of her youth, I can’t. Happy Birthday, Kate.

Friday, July 06, 2018

Say it isn’t so, Gody.

I suspect that the Ament household in Virginia has been filled with the sounds of soccer for the past weeks, and that the five male members of the family have (politely) told Gody it is soccer or nothing!

But since today is Gody’s birthday I hope there is a little pause, tho’ even I intend to join some of the Grosse Pointe family tonight for a little soccer which I recorded. I was going to post a photo of Gody and Al at one of Manny’s Randolph Macon soccer matches, but she deserves to be feted on her own.

This photo is a few years old, but Gody never seems to get any older. What an accomplishment for someone who twenty years ago knew no English to earn a BSN degree. Now she is a well beloved nurse and the mother of a university student, two high school students and an eleven year old, not to mention the wife of a demanding high school teacher. Her friends span the globe, but she has conquered Michigan too. See you soon, Gody, we miss you—and have a wonderful birthday.

Tuesday, July 03, 2018

The Day Before the Fourth

That’s July third and the day our first child was born. The story is that I refused to have a baby on the Fourth, but I don’t remember it that way. Fast forward to 2018 and Al is fifty one today. We spoke to him earlier and he had spent the afternoon doing one of the things he likes best—watching soccer. Until he was a teenager, his sport was baseball, but when he sprung up on his way to 6’7”, the high school basketball coach grabbed him for what would be a pretty good team. A college basketball scholarship followed. Four years in Africa introduced him to soccer and that became a passion. His four sons followed his interest in soccer, but now the younger two have decided to play basketball.

So we have him through the ages, from a bemused looking big brother to a new father with Manny in Pisa to a fifty year old in his role as a French teacher in Virginia.

I almost didn’t get this post up. Looking through old photos held my attention for way too long. I’m scared to look in the mirror: I guess I grew old along with him and his siblings.

Happy Birthday, Al.