Monday, April 7, 2008

The Gift - La Mia Famiglia-Part 1

About two weeks ago, in the course of general chit chat during one of my calls home from work the following conversation transpired:

"You got something in the mail today."

"I did?"

"Ya, from your aunt."

"What is it?"

"I don't know. I didn't open your mail."

"Well open it, open it!"

"Oh WOW! It's an album. Wow! It's about your family."

So obviously I was quite anxious to get home. When I got home I briefly perused the 52 pages within the three ringed binder, mostly taking in the pictures. But after dinner, and after we put Lily down for the night, and after getting things ready for the next day, I sat down with it and read it cover to cover. Last year, in my tribute to my father, I wrote briefly about the family background. This album really filled in the gaps, and corrected some things I had wrong, and left me confused on some other things.

This is the picture that inspired the making of the album:

Laguna Beach, CA 1938

Front row left to right: My grandpa, dad (6 yrs old), grandma, and aunt (the one that made this album); Great Grandmother in the center (Grandma's mom); cousins Gilbert (see below) and Gloria, Uncle Frank and Aunt Frances (Grandma's sister).

Back row left to right: Uncle Jim (Grandma's brother) and Violet, Art Jr. (Uncle Artie's son-more to follow in a future post about Artie) and Lilian, Uncle Larry, Aunt Pat (Grandma's sister) and her friend.

Following the death of Gilbert, my first cousin once removed (it took me about 15 minutes of research to finally figure out officially what our relationship was) in September, 2006, we saw the picture above at his funeral. It belonged to his son, Frank. Later, we asked my Aunt if she would contact Frank and see if we could get a copy of the picture. And I guess that's when my sister and I really began to fire off questions about our family's history. It was at this time that she decided to do this album for us. Filled within were stories and photographs of many family members, mostly all from my grandmother's side of the family.

Pictured above: Cousin Gilbert and his wife Beverly and the first two of their four children, Frank and Susan in 1953.

I'm seeing now that this will require quite a few posts to
A) adequately cover
B) not drive you crazy with too many photos and details all at once.

More to follow.


Green Eyed Girl said...

What an awesome gift! I can't wait to hear more about it.

Val said...

Wow! That is awesome!

Dillo said...

What an incredibly great treasure! We want more pictures! How fun seeing your dad at 6!

Will our blogs be part of the legacy that we leave to our nieces, nephews and grandchildren?

Melissa said...

oohhh that must have been an amazing night for you...reading all this family history. How wonderful!
Look forward to hearing more :)