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Jersey days

August 11th, 2016 at 04:18 pm

Today was another blistering hot and very humid day. It reached 85 inside my house. I could have gone out somewhere air-conditioned, but I didn’t want to leave my cats to fend for themselves. So I retreated to the basement, where it is much cooler, and looked around for something to occupy my time.

I pulled out a box of mom’s memorabilia from some plastic shelves. I knew it contained school stuff, but I hadn’t really examined it. I don’t really like to collect a lot of “stuff,” so I was hoping I could maybe winnow the contents down to a more manageable size.

The box was filled with black and white photos, some yellowing and on the verge of disappearing forever, from about junior high through to the early years of my mother’s marriage. I did throw away countless photos of friends, but sorted through everything and kept photos that had either mom, dad or family in it.
But I had a hard time just tossing the friends’ photos out, sometimes their wedding photos. I had to keep telling myself, I never knew these people. They never knew me, and most are probably dead.

Still, it was hard to do, because I knew these people were very important to my mother at one time. And now she is gone, so to what purpose would I hold onto these?

There were pictures taken on the Jersey shore, hiking and picnicking at “Paterson (NJ) Mountains,” which I looked up online and found no mention of, so I’m sure what used to be a frequent getaway is now developed into residential homes or something. There were lots of photos taken of everyone all dressed up before a prom, at what I recognized as my grandparents’ house, the one I discovered was torn down when dad and I did a road trip there a month ago.

There were a lot of girlfriends! They even called themselves the “Kleen Teens,” whatever that was all about. And I discovered mom had some pretty special beaus before dad. One handsome boy named Eddie showed up a lot in the pictures, and there was even a fake wedding certificate for them. It made me wonder why it didn’t work out between them, and if my mother would have still gotten divorced if she had married him instead of my father.

There were a few others, too, who showed up frequently in the photos, which doesn’t surprise me since my mother was very pretty.

There were a few newly discovered photos of mom and dad that I had never seen before, some very special, so I will be scanning those for posterity. Pictures of both the outside and inside of their first home in Lincoln Park, a simple brick ranch on about 2 acres, just below the hill from my dad’s parents’ home.
Also in the box was a giant embroidered letter “B,” for the Garfield (NJ) Boilermakers. The name is still used for the sports teams there today. Not sure what it means but I do know Garfield was an industrial town.


This was my grandparents' house in Saddle Brook, where mom grew up and so filled with happy memories for me. Grandma was Czech, Grandpa was Austrian. The house was torn down and a new one built in its place, alas. This photo, faint as it is, clearly shows that what dad told me recently was right: that grandpa hadn't built the house with the large patio I knew so well. It was added on later.


My handsome dad. I will have to ask what year and model car this was!


Here's a sweet one of mom and dad. Notice the cigarette in dad's hand. So many of these old photos have people holding a cigarette! It was really the norm.

The trees don't seem to have any leaves on them yet they're not dressed that warmly. It must have been early fall.


Dad at the beach! Somewhere in Jersey!


My much loved grandmother, mom's mom. Don't know who the man sitting next to her was.


My dad's parents. He was German, she was Irish. Always thought grandpa was so handsome too.


Wow. That's quite the fashion statement, mom. Before you laugh, please know that MANY of my mother's girlfriends dressed the exact same way! jeans rolled up to below the knee with a kerchief and the socks. Funny...


Mom on the beach...somewhere on the Jersey shore.


And yours truly, looking mischievous.

9 Responses to “Jersey days”

  1. Carol Says:

    You looked cute as a button! Very handsome forebears. Your dad has a James Dean look going on in some of those pictures.

  2. creditcardfree Says:

    Pictures are the best!

    Still having a hard time reading your blog. Anyone else? It's so wide you have to scroll to the side to see all the words.

  3. PatientSaver Says:

    REally? That's strange...it looks fine to me. Did you try refreshing the page?

  4. creditcardfree Says:

    No refreshing does nothing different on my end. It shows fine on my phone, but not my computer. I think it's a link you included in a post a week ago or more causing the problem. Not sure why I'm the only one, but I've seen it happen with others when the links are really long. It helps to use the tags to create a hyperlink. Here's where to understand how to do it

  5. PatientSaver Says:

    Creditcardfree, i deleted the Kohls link that was really long. See if that makes any difference now.

  6. Turtle Lover Says:

    what fun photos! thanks for sharing. And your blog looks normal to me. :-)

  7. creditcardfree Says:

    Yes, it looks correct now that you don't have the link. Thanks!

  8. Kiki Says:

    Such cool pictures. I had the same page issue so thank you!

  9. FrugalTexan75 Says:

    So much fun looking through old photos!

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