Sunday, May 22, 2016

Celebration of Life


Last weekend my husband and I attended a Celebration of Life gathering for the wife of one of my husband's co-workers. We were gathering with the family to celebrate a gracious lady who passed away last fall, after a much too short battle with cancer. While the guys stood around talking about work, three of us 'spouses' sat at a long banquet table eating Swedish meatballs, and spinach feta dip with melt-in-your mouth homemade pita chips. While we caught up on each others' lives, we were also watching the photo slide presentation of Cathy's life on a large screen television. After the first loop of the presentation, the three of us made two observations: first, we were impressed with how many photos there were of Cathy and Charlie together; second, we needed to go through our own sticky page photo albums, and throw away some of the photos in them, before those photos showed up someday in our own Celebration of Life slide shows.


It's been quite a while since I have looked through those early years photo albums, so one day while everybody was gone, and it was only the dogs and me, I carried a dining room chair into our closet, reached into the back corner of a high shelf, and took down those dusty, sticky page albums. There are definitely some photos that need to go. My husband seemed to have a knack for taking surprise photos of me walking through doorways, I DO NOT want any of those in my Celebration of Life slide show. While looking through them, I across this photo, a 19-year old me in the late 1980's. Such a bad fashion era, when everything was oversized. Fashion aside, this photo was taken at the Hardy Dam, one of the dams I visited last week. This is still about as close as you can get to that fabulous building in the background. Needless to say this was disappointing.


I had much better luck at the Croton Dam, being able to view that from two different vantage points. This was the closest I could get. The explorer in me really wanted to go inside that building, but I know that isn't reality. I was jealous after I reading this sign.


To be able to ride an excursion train to this place, receive a tour, and have a grand dinner...Heaven! Can you imagine a time when this was an exciting adventure to many, as opposed to today's week long trips to amusement parks. I was born in the wrong era!


When my own Celebration of Life slide show plays someday, I want it filled with pictures of places I have been, things I have done. I want it to show that I lived this one glorious life to its fullest.

P.S.


For those who are wondering where the mysterious stairs from my last post led to, they led to this old building which is still a functioning elementary school.

14 comments:

  1. Oh dear! You have a point here Sarah, there are some very dodgy ones of my earlier life with the permed hair and shoulder pads. I now know what my Sunday job will be!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Lol, I did my weeding of less than desirable photos of me a couple of years ago.. ..Now I have some more sifting to do, but it will be different..Digital files I received from my sister..Many of the scans are of photos which are more than 100 years old..I am going to make a book for myself and give a book to each of my sons :-)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Never heard of a Celebration of Life event.... Perhaps they are common, to your area....

    Well, it's certainly better than those wakes, with all those pictures of the deceased, as a beautiful young woman... Propped up on easels, around the wake room. Yikes!!!!! :-)

    No nothin' for me! Cremated, and that it! At least that's what I have told my son! If he does something else, well...... Watch out!!!! ,-))))))

    ReplyDelete
  4. Thank you for sharing. I always enjoy reading and looking at the photos you have added to your blog. You have a way with words.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I can't bring myself to dispose of old photos - they all have memories of one kind or another. I look back and think I didn't look as bad as I thought I did at the time !

    ReplyDelete
  6. Sarah, except for the hairstyle and clothing, you really haven't changed much since you were 19 - if I could run into the younger you on the street, I'd know you in a heartbeat. I love what you wrote: "When my own Celebration of Life slide show plays someday, I want it filled with pictures of places I have been, things I have done. I want it to show that I lived this one glorious life to its fullest." I've never thought about what my life might actually look like to whoever is left behind or comes after. I probably should.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Wonderful idea, a celebration of life. Love your vintage photo.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Well without this post I would never have thought to go through my old photo's and toss a few. I'll have to add it to my to do list along with, and perhaps at the same time, mark the back of certain photos with who the people are and an aproximate date the photo was taken. My Mom didn't leave many photo's but some of the ones she did leave, we had no idea of who they were. I would have liked to have know...
    This was an interesting post...like you, I would really like to have included in my celebration of life all the places we have been. We have been so fortunate to have traveled all over the world...something I don't know if I would feel comfortable doing now with so much terrorism going on...
    Thanks for the tip....

    ReplyDelete
  9. Oh the 80s were terrible with fashion. But you look good!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Such fun to see you when you were 19. A celebration of life is a beautiful idea! You'll have us all looking through our old photograph albums with new eyes!

    ReplyDelete
  11. So interesting looking at those earlier photos of yourself, and sure I could have plenty of those to weed out

    ReplyDelete
  12. You made me chuckle thinking of a culling out those old photos we're not so proud of. They are memories though. Maybe you could just create a file and tell your loved ones "this is what I want in my celebration of life video." I've thought about doing that. It would take a burden off the family at the time, although when we did my mom's, we all enjoyed looking back through her life. We were careful not to use any that would have embarrassed her!! Love the old school. I would never have thought that would be at the top of the stairs!

    ReplyDelete
  13. I'm really enjoying your recent writings. I've always been impressed by how you weave a story, but you are getting better and better. That picture of you at 19 looks just like your daughter now. I bet if you put you and her side by side at the same age you'd look like twins! You, my friend, are "living this one glorious life to its fullest." ;-)

    ReplyDelete
  14. I was going through old images earlier this week and wondering who it was who thought those oversized glasses were a good fashion statement. I hate them in my old photos.

    ReplyDelete

Thank you so much for visiting today and taking the time to read my thoughts on life. :)