Throughout the years while I was raising my four kids (beginning in 1954), I kept a journal where I periodically made notes about holidays, school, vacations, etc. As an occasion arises where I think one of my journal entries would be pertinent, I’m going to post it just as I wrote or typed it back in the day (except for an explanatory note or correction of a typo).
The children will be known here by the nicknames their grandfather used when they were toddlers: The oldest daughter will be Newsie (because she was as good as a newspaper for finding out the latest happenings), the oldest son is Bar (because he called Grandpa’s truck Bar and Grandpa called him Bar), the youngest son is Jackson, and the youngest daughter is Shanty (as in Shanty-Boat).
In January, 1964, we were a family of five: mother, father, 9-year-old daughter Newsie, 7-year-old son Bar, and 3-year-old son Jackson. We lived in a 1922 two-story home in the Oakley suburb of Cincinnati with a nice backyard for the kids to play in. Jackson was prone to the croup and didn’t get to go out and play in the big snow that greeted us on the first day of January, 1964.
Maple Drive greeted 1964 wearing a thick blanket of white as seven inches of snow covered Cincinnati early on New Year’s Day. The street is rutted deeply with tread marks and the cars are all wearing top-pieces of snow which occasionally tilt rakishly on the side as the sun grows warmer. Most of the walks are neatly shoveled and salted so the kids troop gleefully across lawns and up the middle of the roads. Our kids got an extra two days of vacation due to the snow and showed their appreciation by wallowing in it all day. As a surprise for Jackson and me, Newsie and Bar fashioned a plump snowman with all the trimmings—limb arms, rock eyes and buttons, plaid scarf and Bar’s green leather cap. Jackson can look through the dining room window and see friend snowman staring back at him from the yard, which is pocked with footmarks of various sizes.”
L – January 2, 1964
Jackson had six more years to be the baby before another daughter came along and I love to read in my notes where the two older children went out of their way to surprise and please their little brother. Happy memories of almost 50 years ago.