P365 – Day 76 (Old Pictures)

I have a box full of pictures pulled from the drawers of my grandmother’s house. I originally took the pictures (mostly black and white shots almost 30 years old) to make a photo calendar for Nana. Every once in a while I would pull the box off my shelf and look through it. With five children and a busy life, the project was routinely pushed to the bottom of my list of priorities. When the guilt of the failed gift would snipe at me, I would console myself with the lovely relationship I had with Nana. I didn’t need to make her a calendar full of old pictures from my childhood, I wrote to her weekly and visited her every summer. My children grew up making annual trips to her home in Texas. In her last years, she had baskets of pictures of the great-grandchildren on shelves and counters. Of course, now I’m left with pictures of my cousins as small children and some wonderful photos of my parents as newlyweds.

dad, mom and granddaddy

Dad, Mom and Grandaddy on the Mesa in 1965.

Ever since my blog about the cousins I’ve been thinking about those pictures. My mother grew up in a big family but didn’t have any first cousins. Her mother was an only child and her father had one sibling, a younger brother who never married. How sad not to have any cousins.

uncle tom

This picture is a bit grey and fuzzy but I love that smile on Great Uncle Tom’s face.

Thankfully I didn’t have to face life as a poor, pathetic, cousin-less girl as my parents’ siblings were kind enough to have children and provide me with a passel of cousins. How do you classify a group of relatives? Is it a pack, a peck, a brood, or maybe a pride? I guess it depends on what type of animals they are. On my mother’s side, however, there was one tragic flaw; a serious lack of girls. I was the only granddaughter out of nine grandchildren. Talk about being outnumbered.


What an awesome family shot. Phil, in the front row, looks like he is having a GREAT time.

To make matters worse, I was not particularly tomboyish. I did my best to join in on the rough and tumble fun but every time we would visit I secretly searched for the dolls and dress up clothes. I knew they had to be hiding somewhere. It was bad enough not to have a sister, to not have any girl cousins on one whole side of the family was a true tragedy.

Fortunately, my mother’s older sister, who didn’t have any children herself, took special interest in me and made each of my annual visits memorable. We would have lunches out, talk about travel and books, and just enjoy each other. Almost every year she would give me some piece of beautiful jewelry. And then there was my mom’s twin sister, raising three very active boys, who loved me like a daughter. So, I guess saying I suffered is a bit of a stretch. Not to mention the fact that my grandparents could honestly say I was their favorite granddaughter, the one they loved best. :)

trying to keep up

Honestly, how’s a girl supposed to keep up with the boys in a dress that length?

I brought the box of pictures down to my computer two weeks ago. They’ve been sitting here patiently while I ignored them. I wasn’t exactly sure what to do with them. What do you do with a pile of memories? I guess in our house you get them on to the computer and into a blog as soon as possible. Silly me, what was I thinking?

Today I came up with a brilliant idea. Joshua had already played some computer games, read a bit of his book and watched a movie. He was clearly idle and in need of a project. It was rainy and grey and the flu was casting a rather lethargic pall on the household. I thought, if Joshua had some time on his hands, he might be willing to work on my box of pictures. I asked him to try taking pictures of the pictures with the digital camera.

box of pictures

I set him up in the dining room where there is a good source of natural light. It took him a long time to get clear pictures of each photo (and some of the originals were blurry or faded so he was definitely working with raw materials) but in the end he had over 250 digital images for me. Deleting and sorting through brought the number closer to 175. I was thrilled to have copies of the old photos on the computer.

kathy as a young girl

Joshua and the boys say I look just like Rachel in this picture. Hmmm.

Tim wasn’t sure taking pictures of pictures would result in the clearest image. He thought we might have better results using the scanner. I need to try it out and see. I guess it depends on the quality of our scanner. I’m not sure I can convince Joshua to work with this big stack of pictures again.

How long before I pull out the next box of photos? Don’t tell Joshua how many hundreds of photos are tucked away on shelves here and there.


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6 thoughts on “P365 – Day 76 (Old Pictures)”

  1. More more- I want to see more old pictures!!

    Sorry I didn’t give you a girl cousin, Katherine. Watching your Uncle Jerry dote on his girl grand kids makes me wonder how we could have ever survived having a daughter. HA. God does know best!!

    I DO love you, you are right about that!! Aunt Kate

  2. It’s okay, Aunt Kate, it certainly isn’t your FAULT that you didn’t give me a Cain girl cousin. These things can’t be helped. :) I feel very blessed that God was kind enough to give me two daughters. What a sweet gift!

  3. Very fun to see your side of the family!!! Loved the family photo with Phil being so joyous – reminded me of Jacob…Post some more!!

  4. Those were fun pictures! A few weeks ago I was thinking about posting pictures of my grandparents my great grandparents. I think my family would enjoy seeing them on the blog . . .

  5. Emily – you should definitely post those pictures. That would be great. Do your kids read your blog? Does Carlos? Does he have any of the blogging bug himself???

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