Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Travel Break: Winter Memories

Every now and then for one reason or another I go back into my family photos. What starts as a quick look for something specific usually ends up as a long visit, recalling some special times.


I've been going through photos, trying to find the right ones to illustrate the book I'm writing about our family history. A photo -- even one taken before my time -- can lead to many thoughts.


One such thought is that I didn't always hate winter.


In fact, I appear to rather have enjoyed it.


So did the dog!


 And while we may complain about heavy winters and more snow, we really did have just as much as we did in the way-back machine.


Sometimes they even had more. And our ancestors were tougher, too. No snow blowers or tractors to help plow. And they shoveled in skirts and bare legs.


I remember when dad got his riding lawn mower with a plow blade. It was a very big deal for him!


Although some remain purists.


Purists who find photos like this a necessary evil of knowing me.


I will not deny that winter is beautiful, whether it is here at the Ditch...


...or farther afield, like the stark, desolate beauty of the Shaker Village in Hancock, Massachusetts...


...or by a water mill in Sudbury, Massachusetts...


...or on the path in western Michigan where Rick was a leader in founding the Kal-Haven Trail.


It's a spot he loves and one I hope to find again. Not in winter.


Winter, of course, comes with its warnings.


And one would be wise to take heed.


I think I stopped loving winter once I started falling down more -- and it was a longer way to the ground. It seems we fall much harder now -- and don't recover nearly so well. This is our Little Big Guy before he was even one and he seems to be loving it! (He's going to be two very soon and I suspect he'll love the snow even more, in his puffy snowsuit and able to run and play!)


To be honest, the fact that roads in our area aren't the best plowed doesn't endear me to the season, either. (Although at least the snow fills the potholes, at least temporarily!)


I'm longing for a good walk around the Ditch, and while it would be pretty like this...


...I think I'll wait a bit until it looks a little more like this!


And that should only be a few more months!

Sharing with:    Best of the Weekend    /     Let's Keep In Touch    

49 comments:

David Gascoigne said...

I still shovel, just like Rick. Good luck with your book, Jeanie.

Carol @Comfort Spring Station said...

Living in Florida I don't have to worry about snow removal. I love looking at old photos and yours are charming. I understand about falling down and reconsidering old habits that now could lead to injury. Life has stages but I do remember using that little key to attach skates to my shoes and roller skating on the sidewalk. Falling down meant a skinned knee. Can you imagine what it would do to us now?

Mae Travels said...

My view of the recent snow is that yes, it's beautiful -- if you like that sort of thing! Michigan winter this year really feels endless, doesn't it? I love your old AND new photos!

best... mae at maefood.blogspot.com

Preppy Empty Nester said...

I love these family photos!! Thank goodness, we haven't had too much snow this winter but it's not over yet. Enjoy your week sweet Jeanie.

Valerie-Jael said...

Wonderful photos. I love looking at winter, especially when I'm inside where it's warm and cozy! Sooner or later it will be spring. Thanks for sharing! Hugs, Valerie

Penny from Enjoying The Simple Things said...

Your post brought back memories for me of my growing up in Michigan. We lived on Hiland Lake, so ice skating was a must! Sledding too! Making snowmen and snow forts. I also grew up with a collie and his name was Laddie. Thanks for stirring memories.

Misadventures of Widowhood said...

Oh my gosh, you have the exact same smile you had back in the first photo! Such a happy smile, too.

I have a photo of a collie we had when I was a kid that looks just like yours. They could the same dog or siblings.

La Table De Nana said...

I always know it's you:) Love your old pics!!!

Lauren @ My Wonderfully Made said...

Such cute pictures! Yes, I think when we are young, we don't feel the cold! I'm a devout winter-hater so it's spring I long for as well!

Sami said...

Great family photos Jeanie.
I lived in Germany for almost 6 years in the 80's and my kids were born there and it was the only time I lived with winter snow but even though it could look very pretty, it was pretty ugly when the snow melted and all that black slush on the streets. It made for a difficult day out when I had to push a pram and hold onto another child to walk to the shops...
I much prefer warmer weather :)
Good luck with your Family history book.

Linda said...

Your inner joy always comes through your blog. I sat through this reading and looking at the pictures with a big smile on my face. Great pictures Jeanie♥

eileeninmd said...

Hello, love your old family photos. Both hubby and I go out and shovel our driveway. Sometimes our nice neighbor will help us by plowing our driveway and we digs out the car. The last shot is beautiful, I am looking forward to seeing the spring blossoms. Wishing you a happy day!

Joanne Huffman said...

Really happy to be missing this Michigan winter - hope it's gone when I get back midMarch.

Lynne said...

Nice post Jeanie . . .

Your mom and dad must have delighted in their adorable little girl
with bright blue eyes, curly hair and beautiful smile!
I love your revisiting the past, family pictures and outings.
And yes indeed, as a little girl, I think you enjoyed winter and snow.

There is something energizing about crisp winter air.
I guess if we are out in the cold, energy plays its part.
Cold air gets our bodies up and moving!

My Mister Irish is a bit OCD with our driveway snow removal.
He likes it cleaned to perfection.
I often grab a shovel and do my “generating” out there.
He comes around straightening my lines!

I am looking forward to some warmer and green . . . flowers too!

Gina said...

Jeanie, I am enjoying winter much better now that I have moved to NC. I used to dread the ice more than the snow. Love seeing all the vintage pictures!

Debbie-Dabble Blog and A Debbie-Dabble Christmas said...

I love the photos from your childhood!! I too loved snow in the Winter and was an avid sled rider. My favorite time was to sleigh ride at night and then take our dog for a walk around the development where my Dad built our house which was in a circle. My Mother would also come and sleigh rise with me and my friends when I was in high school and that put her in her very late 50's!! I too am wary of having to walk and drive in snow but I sure miss those evening sleigh rides and walks in the snow!! I realized when I was an adult that since I was able to sleigh ride, days after a snow fall, that our roads were not taken care of. That is not the case where I live now. I always thought my sons would have a blast riding saucers and sleds down our huge hill but that was never the case as our road is always kept clear. My sons had to sleigh ride down large once grass covered hills in our development....
Thanks so much for the memories!!
Hugs,
Debbie

krishna said...

All the best for your books. pictures are really amazing.

Lowcarb team member said...

Oh Jeannie, what a lovely post. Thank you so much for sharing these lovely family photographs, so nice to see.
Love the one of 'Little Big Guy'

All the best Jan

Pam Jackson said...

LOVE the snow pics! Beautiful. And I really love the old black and white pics. Nice.

Deb said...

Loved all the old black and whites, Jeanie. Some reminded me of my family photos from the dinosaur days. And your dog...my heart skipped a beat when I saw that gorgeous face. :-)
Your photos are all beautiful but the last one is where my eyes want to rest. I am so done with winter. xo

Pamela said...

I love the childhood photos. I grew up in Illinois and had those snowy winters too. Where I live now, it never snows. I'm not complaining, you understand.

Louca por porcelana said...

Stunning pictures!You were the cuttest little girl!Your Grand is adorable too!

Jennifer Richardson said...

That. was. BEAUTIFUL! I loved the journey through your snowglobe
with you. What a darling you were and are:)

Winter seems romantic in most of the old photos I've seen.
Snow evokes such powerful emotion - mostly positive among my people:)

Thanks for sharing the beauty of Winter - it gives me courage
to see this thing through until the end:)
-Jennifer

Iris Flavia said...

Oh, Jeanie, I know!You just look for something specific and BOOM time just flew by!
Cute pics!!!

Wow, a book sounds great! And winters are just great for kids, I guess. Even I liked it ;-)
Shoveling like that sure is sport or training and gets you warm. I'm sooooo old, I remember that, too! (No,really, I do)

Strange enough, we do not have winters with much or any snow anymore, very much to my Niece's despair.
And your snow-pics indeed look romantic! So pure.
But I'll be happiest to see flowers and green.

This was a beautiful post, thank you. I dream a lot these days of my parents, no idea, why...

@Sami... I know (minus the pram)!

Marilyn Miller said...

I shovel our walk when it snows, in fact I rather enjoy it. I hope you see spring blossom in only one more month and not several months. What a cute little girl you were. It is rather pretty in your neighborhood, but I know it gets tiring rather quickly and then you want to be out and about. Hope it melts soon and you see sunshine and blossoms.

My name is Erika. said...

Our views of winter seem to change as we age. I wonder if we could not have to deal with winter but only get to play out in winter if we would still feel like when we were kids. Stay warm! Hugs-Erika

Sally Wessely said...

Loved the photos of you as a child. That joy in your face in every photo does seem to be the standard reaction you had when playing in the snow. I remember as a child that I too would be so joyful in the snow - at first. Then, I’d get cold and wet and snow would get in my boots and would stick to my gloves and I would be over having fun in the snow. That sounds so negative, but the truth is, I loved snow for a little while each time it snowed when I was a child. I am the same today. It is beautiful. It can even be fun. Actually, at times it is even magical to be out in the snow - for a little while. I’ve just never been a snow enthusiast who enjoyed skiing or sledding for any length of time. I don’t know how those of you in your neck of the woods deal with all that snow all winter long. Here's to spring...

Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

I LOVE how you can incorporate so many memories into one post. Just like the photos you run across, the photos fill you with a myriad of wonderful thoughts of days gone by, then bring you to the current time. I so enjoyed this one!

Yael said...

Lovely post! :-)

Joyful said...

Beautiful scenes Jeanie. Your old photos certainly make it look liked you loved winter! LOL. I think back in those days everyone just sucked it up and made the best of it as I too don't recall bad memories of winter though I do not have all the wonderful photos you have. The photos you took of Rick and the area where you live are stunning too. The little one is so adorable int he snow suit. I'm sure you will take lots of photos for him to look back on when he is grown.

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Your photos of your childhood are so sweet, Jeanie! I've add always loved winter! i have so many fond memories of buiding snowmen, sledding and ice skating when I was young. I still love snow and the cold weather. I feel fortunate to live where there are 4 seasons. I embrace them all for their individual beauty. I guess I am a rarity as I love winter. I could never live whetecit was hot snd humid all the time!

Sandra at Maison De Jardin said...

Jeanie, loved these photos. Reminded me of my childhood when we had real winters here in West Virginia. Your photos are beautiful.

The French Hutch said...

We only have the occasional snow and usually it's not around long enough to have to shovel, thank goodness! I think is is beautiful and it is always a big deal to get snow here. I really enjoyed seeing your pics as a little girl, you still look the same. I love the winter photos, just beautiful.
Have fun with the book........

Pam Richardson said...

Jeanie, what memorable shots of when you were a child. We don’t often see snow in the South, but when we do I enjoy it the most from the windows. I always love reading your thoughts! Happy Thursday!

Karen said...

Good luck with your book. It sure will be a labor of love.

Jacqueline~Cabin and Cottage said...

You are going to have a wonderful book! I have thought about doing something like that for my family. It wouldn't take long because there are not many photos. You have so many wonderful photos of your childhood. I've enjoyed our little snows so much, but I wouldn't want a winter in the north!

Rita C at Panoply said...

Wow, you guys really deal with a LOT of snow. I always felt like snow what more frequent and just more volume in our region in days past, but your region looks to be consistent through time. I am so thankful about how mild our winter has been here this year, only a few times with an inch or two. That Shaker Village photo is breathtaking, as is the water mill. I think the key to enjoying winter is a) having the right clothes, and b) having your home maintenance taken care of (advance things like gutters and roofs, and someone to shovel the walks, drives in the moment). Falls as we age are most certainly a concern, let alone having winter to get in on the act! Spring is such a rejuvenation for everything, I'm really looking forward to it.

William Kendall said...

The dog reminds me of our collie Mandy that we had when I was growing up.

shoreacres said...

I loved winter until I left Iowa. Then, years and years in Africa/California/coastal Texas seem to have reset my internal thermostat,and the cold is just not as pleasant. On the other hand, I finally dragged out my really good long underwear for work, and was pretty darned cozy. Maybe those snowsuits did the trick for us as kids!
On the other hand, I do remember walking to junior high and high school with boots and skirts, and we didn't think much of it.

Unrelated, but fun... I don't know if I've shared this with you, but I came across it again today, and remembered how wonderful it is.

thepaintedapron.com said...

Oh Jeanie, I don't know how you deal with all that snow! It is beautiful though, and your little guy is loving it!
Jenna

Tamara said...

Thankyou for sharing these. Beautiful photos. Despite spending most of my life in Australia, I did spend 5 years of my childhood in Canada and the UK. These photos remind me of those years when I would've been the same age as you in the photos Jeanie. Unlike you tho, i still love the snow, and will travel a long long way to see snow.

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Jeanie, I suspect that most people who grew up and experienced winter and snow as children enjoyed it back then. And, while I still do enjoy a walk after a snowfall, it is the fear if a fall when icy conditions are around. A couple of years ago we bought snowshoes after moving to NH and wearing them if there is an icy trail is comforting. We also had a similar looking collie p, named Laddie, who loved the snow. Childhood and family phots are such a trip back in time. Thanks for sharing yours.

Olka said...

Aww! You were such an adorable little girl!
And kids usually love winter time. When I was a kid I also liked to play in the snow. But when we grew up we usually realize that the snow is always related to cold days, dirty floor, dirty car and awful streets while it's melting down.
To be honest - I love Autumn the most.

Lisa from Lisa's Yarns said...

I love it when you share old photos from your childhood. I also loved snow and winter when I was a child. We had a very big yard and did a lot of running around. We'd built snow forts and snow men and women. And sometimes my dad would take us sledding or my dad and uncle would drop us kids off at a stock pond where we would ice skate. My cousin and I talked about that recently. This was WAY before cell phone so they'd drop us off and come back in an hour or so and see if we wanted to come back or stay out longer. We'd always op to stay out longer. It was a different time! But we were in the middle of nowhere in rural ND so quite safe.

I don't like winter these days either. This one has been particularly brutal. You are required by city law to shovel your sidewalk or the city will do it for you and charge you. But some people do a better job than others. We luckily have a snowblower than Phil's mom handed down to us after she hired a snow clearing service. We have a corner lot and a driveway so that snow blower has gotten a lot of use! I did a little bit of shoveling this week when we got about 9" and boy was that a lot of work. The snow was so heavy and we have such huge piles so you really have to lift and throw it far when shoveling our front walk/steps. It's pretty satisfying to see the fruits of your labor. I ordered a sled for Paul as we need a fun winter activity to get us out of the house. So hopefully it will be warm enough this weekend to pull him around the neighborhood. I think he'll love it and maybe it will remind me that winter isn't all bad?

Regine Karpel said...

Love.

Marie Rayner said...

I loved winter when I was a child! Sliding and sledding and ice skating. I never seemed to feel the cold then! I sure do now! Thank goodness we don’t get a lot of snow here, but it does get very cold! I’ll take spring and summer any day! Loved all your old photos! What a treasure! Xoxo

Beatrice Euphemie said...

love all the snowy photos - especially those sweet memories! I agree with you about not loving snow so much as we get older. I do remember being so excited about it as a child and playing outside all day, sledding and skating. Our hands and feet would get so numb, even with fur-lined mittens and boots. I suppose if we didn't have to drive, walk or shovel it we would still be having fun! And when we fall, we don't bounce any more :) xx Karen

Karen (Back Road Journal) said...

It is very interesting how our feelings change about winter as we age. When young we play in it, when we are older we are the ones to clear it out of the way and when we are older still, we worry how it might impact our health.

Calypso In The Country said...

Beautiful photos and a lovely post overall! Thanks for linking up to Best of the Weekend. You were one of my features this week! Enjoy your weekend!
Shelley

Popular Posts