|daddy at 90|
What do you get someone turning 90 who has everything he needs or wants? I decided to make a book for him about his life. I have boxes and folders filled with old newspaper articles, letters, photos, and family history. They're not organized very well, so it took a lot of digging. My house was turned over to this project for a couple of months in the fall.
Trying to figure out how to approach telling his story gave me a new appreciation for people who write biographies! So many decisions have to be made. And I had to be realistic about the time frame I had to work with - I should have begun this a year ago when I first thought about doing this.
I bought a spiral bound sketch book, about 8 1/2 by 11". I decided to hand write the story, beginning with a title that would give me some lea way: "An Incomplete, Significantly Biased Chronicle of the Remarkable Life of Morten Thornton Beck Joslin". That way, I couldn't be accused of leaving things out, reporting my own point of view, etc. I realize that everyone who knows him could have experienced the same event and come up with a different take on it.
It became apparent that I couldn't keep it a secret since I wanted to include as much accurate information as I could and much of that was only known to him. What a memory he has! He gave me so many details that at times I couldn't write fast enough.
I left empty pages throughout the book so that he, mom, my brother or sister could add stories that I had not put in. And I copied lots of photos, as many as the book would hold, to accompany the narratives throughout.
He was thrilled. I was so excited to have been able to do this for him. And we will copy it for our kids and grandchildren so they will have a better sense of this man whom many of them will not have a chance to know as well as he or they would like.
My mom's 90th is coming up in another year - I should start working on that soon!
Have you thought of writing down your own stories? Or those of family members?