Where I’m From

I have always believed that in order to know where you’re headed, you need to know where you’ve been. I was inspired to write my “Where I’m From” piece by Lisa Hall-Wilson. It’s from a fun and easy to follow template shared by Sharla Lovelace. I have linked their posts for your enjoyment.  You can find the template here. Why not give it try? Here is what I came up with. 

Where I’m From…

I am from Fanta Orange Soda, Wint-o-Green Lifesavers that sparked in your mouth when you chewed them in a dark closet and grape Popsicles that dripped on your bathing suit after running through the sprinkler on a hot day. I am from rolling down grass hills until your skin itches and playing Cowboys and Indians in unfenced backyards and fresh air.

My Dad loved the view from this rock overlooking Nakusp, B.C.

My Dad loved the view from this rock overlooking Nakusp, B.C.

I am from mountains thick with evergreens and “let’s check your ears for wood ticks.” I’m from Indian Paintbrush on the roadside, maple trees in the park and Sylvia in the planter at the front door. I am from a long street in a small town where our tiny cracker-box house was clean, lively, smelled of freshly baked peanut butter cookies and exploded with accordion music.

I am from the scent of a real Christmas tree strung with multi-coloured lights and delicate shiny hanging balls, live music with four carol-singing sisters on Christmas Eve and a turkey feast made by Grandma Mawdsley or Grandma Johnson on the big day. I’m from a new Easter hat, white gloves and shiny white patent leather shoes with  matching purse in the spring and from a visit with Aunty Stina over pea soup after church on Sunday.

In 2011 I visited my first home. It was a lot smaller than I remembered but our family of 6 lived happily here. .

In 2011 I visited my first home in Trail, B.C. It was a lot smaller than I remembered but our family of 6 lived happily here.

I am from birthday parties with boiled wieners served on fresh white buns, an angel food cake iced as a skirt with Barbie stuck in the middle and a candy-filled plastic basket dangling from a best friend’s finger as she skipped back to her home next door. I am from summer picnics at Grandma’s with seeds-and-all watermelon eating contests and ice cubes shoved down Great-Grandpa’s back.

I am from long overnight road trips wearing flannel pajamas in the back of the station wagon where no one wanted to be the first to tell Dad you had to pee. I am from summers in the pink Terry trailer with Dad in full scuba gear, sisters in matching plaid bathing suits and Mom in a home sewn flowered, sleeveless top with pedal pushers. I am from a bath in the lake at sunset and bundled up cozy in a sleeping bag on a rainy night. I am from winters shooshing down Red Mountain ski hill in cable bindings with a dream of being the next Nancy Green.

Red Mountain Ski Hill - I thought it was bigger, too!

Red Mountain Ski Hill – I thought it was bigger, too!

I am from prairie farms; meat and potatoes with flapper pie and from modern-day Vikings; lutfisk, pickled pigs feet, pickled herring and Swedish pancakes.

Iver and Dawn - newly married in simple times.

Iver and Dawn – newly married in simple times.

I am from written memories and family trees mixed with black and white photos saved in a banker’s box. I am from divorce without dysfunction. I am from Iver who spent most of his life running faster than his angels could fly and Dawn who saw the goodness in everyone. I am the adult who had to grow up when she lost both her parents within one month. If I had more time with them I’d hug them like I’d never let them go and write their every word so my children’s children would know them.

Where are you from? I’d love to hear from you.

15 thoughts on “Where I’m From

  1. My gosh Kath, give me a second to wipe the tears. The wonderful vision I had of your Mother in peddle pushers was priceless. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Kathi, this is beautiful and fun and poignant. I just love it! It reminds me of our retreat. It helps me see you and where you came from, which seems pretty wonderful over all. I need to do this again.

  3. Kath,
    this is wonderful.
    I felt myself emotionally connect with your inspiring post – I’m so sorry you lost your parents in one month – as an orphaned adult, I completely get that.
    I share stories with my children about my parents and their childhoods in the second world war – knowing where they come from is so important I think. 🙂

  4. Wow! Thanks to Zehra for sharing this… I could literally picture where you are from… So sorry to hear about your parent’s loss Kathi, I can’t even imagine how hard it must have been for you. I really appreciate the beauty if your post. Maybe I will try this too ‘where I am frm’

  5. Kathi- I love the addition of the pictures to the post. The pictures leave as strong an image as your words. Love the sentence, “I am from divorce without dysfunction.” What powerful words that you don’t hear that often. Lovely blog. Nice work.

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