Sunday, January 8, 2012

A Simpler Time

      I got a wonderful thing in the mail yesterday from my Dad. We had already discussed it, so I knew what it was and had been anticipating its arrival.
      My Aunt has been in possession of several reels of old films made during their childhood in the early 1960's. She found someone to put them on a disc, and many copies were made to share with the entire family. My disc came yesterday! I opened it immediately and ran for the nearest DVD player, with my teenage son Corey right behind me. We sat there glued to the TV as if it were a ballgame. But it was more like watching an Andy Griffith rerun. The video had the classic grainy appearance, with continuous flashes of lights and no sound. But I could clearly pick out my family-my Dad, his brother and sisters, my grandparents (Nanny & Papa) and great-grandparents, and some great-aunts and uncles. My grandparents were the age I am now (early 40's), and my dad and his siblings were the age of my children.
     I haven't watched the entire 3 hours of video yet. But what I've seen so far depicts many activities-family road trips, parades, boating, fishing, and horse riding. But my favorite parts, by far, are the times when the entire family was together inside making music. Apparently, my Papa came from a very musical family. He was, and still is, a wonderful guitar player. The video shows him playing and singing, while his family played piano, banjo, and fiddle. The younger kids were all present, enjoying the sounds and the toddlers' dancing. Corey and I were longing to be able to listen to their music! The video cuts to another room, where some adult women are sitting around a table. Cut again to the outdoors, where children were playing with cats and puppies, and riding horses. There were scenes of public spaces, where all of the new cars are what we call antiques today.
      It is so very interesting, even refreshing, to see what my family did in those days. It is so pure to see families just spending time together, engaging in activities together, making music together. It is such a sharp contrast to the lives we live today-play dates, dance lessons and recitals, gymnastics, sporting activities of all kinds and at all ages, school activities. Just listing these makes my head spin. Long before computers, video games, and smartphones, life was so much more simple, slower, calmer.
      Thank you, Daddy, for this glimpse of your childhood. I'm so thankful to have it, to watch it, and
to share it with my children. It is something I will cherish forever.

My Daddy as a young boy.
My Grandmother (Nanny), front center, as a teenager.


  1. I was thrilled to get comments from my Aunt and Uncle on this post. Since I moved blogs right after this most, their comments showed up on the other page. I am moving them here to share with you.
    My Aunt Deloris said:
    Thank you for your appreciation of the dvd. It is my hope that all of the family have the same insight of the times. Back then and what our lives was like. I wish all of my nieces and nephews could be as close as we all were.

  2. My Uncle Eldon said:
    me and pam enjoyed your commentary on the dvd. hard to believe that you are related to almost everyone you see. glad you liked it.