06 January 2011

52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy and History - New Year's Memories

How I wish I had just one small, grainy photo to show you of my most vivid family New Year's memory. Unfortunately I was never allowed to attend the coveted event held every year at my Grandma and Bubba's house, the party which I know for sure included steaks for all, lots of noise and laughter and other mysterious and nebulous items. My sister, Mary, says that our parents told us that our grandparents needed a break from us. Can you imagine needing a break from these two girls? Well...maybe the one on the left. Just kidding Mary!
Here is what I think and, Mom or Dad; you can correct me if I am wrong. These were big parties. Bubba was a police officer in Bristol, Connecticut for many years and he had a lot of friends. Plus, he had a very large family including six siblings and their spouses and children. As far as I know, everyone was invited to these New Year's parties and I think my parents might have tried to avoid the crowd and the entire hullabaloo. Am I getting close, Mom? Dad? It's okay if Grandma and Bubba didn't really need a break from us and you just told us that. I loved our own intimate New Year's tradition and cherish the memory of them.

While other kids' parents left them with babysitters and went out on the town to celebrate the New Year, my parents always spent a quiet night home with Mary and me. They made it festive, with special appetizers; shrimp cocktail and shrimp dip with Social crackers were always on the menu. Sometimes my Dad's Mom, Grandma B, came and joined us. Without using words, you told us we were important to you and that you would rather be there with us welcoming the New Year, than anywhere else. This was a powerful message.

Home with my husband, kids and dogs is still my favorite place to be on New Year's Eve. For years we celebrated with friends from college, rotating houses, but the kids are growing up now and it isn't possible to throw them all together once a year and expect them to play. Now, sometimes we get together with local friends, sometimes we attend First Night, but we always spend it with our kids. This year we were lucky enough to have all three home with us. Two of our crew fell asleep early, but I will always remember the belly laughs I shared with my oldest and youngest as we traded jokes and kept ourselves awake until Midnight. Nothing could have made the night better. Another memory to cherish.

Happy New Year! 

Scrappy Gen

PS I have neglected my blogging duty to thank Amy Coffin of the We Tree blog for creating the series 52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy and History. (See comment below.) Thank you Amy! I am very excited to be taking part. 


  1. Much agreement here - quiet nights at home are the best.

  2. What a sweet post and wonderful memory. Thanks for sharing and participating in the 52-week series.

    Here is the think to the series in case some of your readers want to join in the fun:



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