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Finding Home

Many pails of water.

Hello from cloudy Vermont. Did I tell you that I inherited all of my dad’s music? Three binders and additional folders filled with the yellowed titles and lyrics of his very own songs. Songs like “You can’t stop my secret love for you,” and “Pretty blue eyes and a blond pony tail.” Even some songs in French, like “Nous vous aimons.”

Some of the songs seem familiar. I’ve heard them before, but can’t quite grasp the tune yet. I remember this one: “I’ll see you in Montreal, C-A-N-A-D-A.” Dad wrote that one for Expo ’67 and my family’s trip to the fair. Oh right. I didn’t go. At five, I wasn’t deemed old enough. I got stuck at home with some aunt or other. I hated that song. Others I never knew existed, and I’m tempted to try my hand at adding my own music. How can you not want to sing “I can stop my feet from walking towards you. I can keep my arms from holding you. I can stop my eyes from looking at you. But I can’t stop myself from loving you.” Can you hear the melody?

I’ve found other treasures, perhaps the beginning of Dad’s biography. Listen:

“The baby boy was born on a hot July afternoon when haying was in full swing. He was the twelfth child born to Mary Jane and Adelard. So he really didn’t come as a big surprise to anyone, especially the mom. She was busy with her child while the men folks were busy tending to the hay that had to be brought in the barn that day. The other young children were down at the neighbors because they were told that “Indians” were coming that afternoon. I’m told that the most exciting thing that happened that day besides the birth of a baby was to light and set off a “rocket,” like fireworks, to celebrate the birth of this little baby, but the rocket had a mind of its own and it came down in a stack of hay and it almost set the whole field on fire.  Only after a lot of shouting and many pails of water was it put out.”

Ten precious pages of my Dad’s early life, in strong, neat cursive. I’m reading it slowly to make it last well into summer. My mom, sisters, and brother will be so pleased to find out what I’ve discovered. I always wondered where I got my story telling abilities, and between his story and his songs, now I know. My dad. His musical ability, his way with words, they course through me. That’s something!

What blessings did your dad leave you? Check in next week for another segment of Finding Home.

Lisa

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3 thoughts on “Many pails of water.

  1. Maggie on said:

    These are real gems to have inherited! I love the songs and found myself humming along. I felt for you when you had to stay home from the fair too. You’ve expressed real feelings and made them real for me too.

    The beginning of the autobiography just comes alive with the excitement of the birth of this child and the near fire that was caused by the rocket.

    Your dad has given you a tremendous gift. I’m so glad you are cherishing it.

    My dad taught me about making decisions and about forgiveness. Some day I’ll tell you the story of a bus ride and talking in the dark about what might have been.

    Sending love and healing prayers your way. Cherish the memories.

    • Hi Maggie–I look forward to hearing your stories, as I always do. I have our joural ready to mail and hopefully that will happen tomorrow morning when the post office opens. I love you!

      • Maggie on said:

        We’re just leaving Sunnyside, WA where we had a nice visit with Greg’s family. We celebrated his dad turning 98 by eating some ice cream cake in the middle of the afternoon and spoiling our appetites for dinner. He’s a wonderful man who is interested in everything!

        I’ll be checking the mail every day when I get home. We are moving from our home of nearly 40 years back to our small ranch-style home so everything is being sorted, given away, thrown away or packed. It’s a great cleansing. I will hold our book close to my heart so it doesn’t go in the wrong pile.

        Much love to you.

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