Remembering Dad

WordPress.com Daily Prompt:

Where do your morals come from — your family? Your faith? Your philosophical worldview? How do you deal with those who don’t share them, or derive them from a different source?

My dad, my brother, and me are taking a ferry to somewhere.

My moral compass (with me & bro), on a ferry to somewhere

“Here comes the only honest lawyer in Iowa!”  It’s the greeting often heard in my dad’s presence.

Dad became a lawyer because he loved the law.  He wasn’t motivated by money.  He did a lot of pro bono work, and we were not wealthy.

After graduating near the top of his law class at the University of Iowa, he turned down job offers from “big city” law firms (“big city” being a relative term since we’re talking Iowa here).  He wanted to be part of a community.  He grew up in small town Iowa, and that’s where he settled.

He became a big fish in a little pond, not because he sought it out, but because civic-mindedness and “giving back” were part of his nature.

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Sunday Night TV Lights

NaBloPoMo Daily Prompt:

Tell us about a tradition passed through your family.

Timmy hugs his collie Lassie.

Have you hugged your collie today?

Researchers tell us traditions are easily established in children.  Meaning, you need to repeat an activity only a few times for it to become routine, or customary to child.

Case in point: my family’s Sunday night tradition of gathering in the living room for a supper of fried egg sandwiches and hot cocoa while watching Lassie.  In my memory, this went on for three years.  In reality?  It probably happened three times.

Thank You, NaBloPoMo

Mom and Aunt Marceille have a warm reunion on a cold day.

The Carter girls, home on the farm, c.1943

Thank you, NaBloPoMo for giving us our Daily PromptsWordPress.com also has one, but it usually entails more thinking than I’m willing to do today.  (Plus, I’m not crazy about today’s prompt:  Tell us about a thing you’ll never write about.  Um, no.  Then I’d be writing about it, right?)

From NaBloPoMo:  Are you interested in genealogy?  Do you have a family tree constructed?

Short answer:  No.  And no.

Long answer:  One of my father’s cousins was an genealogist.  He even wrote a book about it, but it was in “geneolo-eze” and I had a horrible time understanding it.  I’m not sure if I still have the book or threw it away.  Hopefully the latter.

My Uncle Rod also wrote a book about my grandfather.  (You may remember them both in word and picture from this post.)  In it, I discovered I could join the DAR, as one of my ancestors loaned his rifle to the Continental Army and followed it into the American Revolution.  I haven’t joined DAR.  Perhaps I will if I feel they’ve sufficiently atoned for not allowing Marion Anderson to sing at Constitution Hall.

I’m not sure about my mother’s side of the family.  I think her sister (Aunt Marceille, pictured above on the right) tried doing some research, but don’t know what became of it—or if she was even successful.  I think her family also dates back a few centuries in America, as she was a member of the DAR.  Or was she eligible by marriage?  Does DAR allow Daughters-in-Law of the American Revolution?   😀

My grandfather was a wonderful story-teller.  He always told of some incident from the past whenever the family gathered.  Unfortunately, being a kid and teen-ager, I didn’t listen very well.  I guess this means I need to do some research if I want to write a memoir of my parents.  I can think of worse pastimes.