5 condolences: vacations

I was born in Ohio, surrounded by extended family.  When I was 18 months old and my brother was 3 years old, my parents packed up and drove out to California so my dad could attend seminary.  That simple move impacted all our future family vacations, each of which involved travelling back east to visit family. 

My favorite of these vacations came after my grandpa retired and he & my grandma moved to South Carolina.   During several summers, our family flew out to Myrtle Beach and rented a beach house with my aunts, uncles, and six cousins.  With such a large crowd in one house, there was non-stop laughter and fun.  We’d spend our days swimming in the ocean, fishing with grandpa, digging in the sand, and playing skee ball at the arcade up the way.  And we’d spend our nights eating great food, playing cards and telling stories (while our parents were drinking a beer or two).  Those Myrtle Beach days are some of my favorite childhood memories.

With cold wind blowing across our faces and snow covering the ground here in Chicago, many of us at Legacy.com are dreaming of vacations in faraway, warm locations.  Perhaps it’s not the next best thing, but reading about others’ vacations is somehow satisfying.  Here are 5 condolence messages about vacation memories:

  1. I am flooded with memories from my college day vacations with Uncle Andy, Aunt Nancy, Ann Marie, Helen and the Philly Roans. Nothing can compare to 25 cent beers with a bucket of steamed mussels and Uncle Andy’s company at the bar. [Published in Citizens’ Voice]
  2. The thing that I am sure that all of my siblings remember most about our childhood is our family vacations. Our annual excursion to UP to see our numerous relatives and spend two weeks freezing in Lake Gogebic, hanging at the farm, fishing with dad and grandpa, going to Randalls Pasty shop, eating 6 meals a day at aunt Evys, visiting my spoon playing, jiggerman dancing uncle Clarence and aunt Idy, hanging with the crazy Trollas, me and my sister Geri winning all the quarters from the local kids at Ramsey Park and watching my mom have near heart attacks while we picnicked at Presque Isle and swam in Lake Superior for 10 seconds at a time. The one thing that always occurred on these vacations is that we got an education. This was his special time to be with us and using his father as his wingman to teach us such things as the difference in pine trees and how wood was processed and shipped. He would use a day trip to Lake of the Clouds through the Porcupine Mountains to teach us about species of animals and fish and local history about his family. Walks through the woods would be lessons on wildflowers, lectures on the beauty and dangers of nature. Stops during our walks would usually include him and my grandpa making us annoying little whistles out of twigs cut from trees and fashioned to perfection with his pocket knife. He did the little things that were special moments and forever memorable. [Published in Jackson Citizen Patriot]
  3. Chris is also the only person we knew who planned his vacations around aerobic shops. He would pack up and drive or fly to a different city each time and spend 4 days doing aerobics. Yes, that was his vacation. Not lying on beach or sightseeing….aerobics. That was Chris. [Published in the Ottawa Citizen]
  4. I got to spend time at their homes during several summer vacations. The best times were in Corpus Christi, where Uncle Charles took me fishing. I really liked Aunt Cathleen’s cooking, too. During the week Aunt C would drop me off at the T head or jettys and I would fish until she picked me up later. One summer when I was about 14, two friends and I, who had been spear fishing and living on the beach at Pt. Aransas for several days, stopped by unannounced to visit and take baths in the backyard using the water hose. I wasn’t smart enough to call ahead, and I know I unduly surprised Aunt Cathleen. [Published in Houston Chronicle]
  5. I recall one hilarious vacation time when Fred, Mary Jane, Pat McMullen and I traveled to Puerto Rico to visit one of Mary Jane’s college roomates who resided with her husband who was stationed at the US military base outside San Juan. We all looked like 60’s hippie characters. We were traveling in a bug that broke down just outside base along the Autopisto. We had to push our rental “bug” onto the base while miltary folks stood by and watch this gang of colorful characters who were on a misson to have fun in the sun. [Published in The Times Herald]

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About Katie

I joined Legacy.com in 2002 as a part-time content screener and now serve as Director of Operations, overseeing Legacy’s day-to-day operations (Guest Book screening, obituary processing, customer service, and client service). I grew up in California, the daughter of a psychologist and a minister. My parents instilled in me the importance of listening to and caring about others. One of the things I appreciate most about working at Legacy.com is that I am able to have a small part in easing people's pain during one of the most difficult times in their lives. In my life outside of Legacy, I enjoy baking treats (and bringing them to the office to share), playing the piano, reading, taking pictures, tending to our vegetable & herb gardens, trying out new restaurants and foods, spending time with my husband, Chuck (whom I met at Legacy) and our kids, Brett Jr. & Josie.
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