A BRIEF HISTORY OF MY FAMILY
My mother was beautiful. She was French on her father’s side and “Heinz 57” variety on her mother’s side. Mother was petite. She had long, dark, curly hair, pretty eyes,
well-proportioned legs, slim ankles and small feet. I wanted to look just like her when I grew up. But I didn’t. I inherited the German ankles, feet and legs from my father’s side of the family. I only inherited my mother’s overbite.
Mother was the oldest of five children. The 1920’s and 30’s were tough times because of the depression, so my Grandma Fleury did everything she could to keep food on the table including take in boarders. The beds were slept in around the clock because of different shift workers. Grandma was always cooking, and she believed in putting out a big spread. My mother said she would put out empty dishes on the table to make it look like
they had more food.
When I was older I remember that grandma worked outside the house as a “Part Time
Parent”. She would clean house and care for the children of wealthy people.
I was able to go with her occasionally to entertain the kids. I loved my grandma and always secretly thought I was her favorite. She taught me many things and I knew she was always praying for me.
Grandpa Fleury worked odd jobs. One job he had was playing guitar at a local tavern with
a group of guys. Grandpa was tremendously talented. He built instruments and repaired them. My mother kept one of his guitars in the attic until it fell completely apart due
to the extreme temperatures. Grandpa spoke very little but was fun to be around. I remember that he would come over to sit at our kitchen table, running his fingers over the cool Formica top. He would search for any food particle I might have missed after I washed it and point it out to me. It was a game I enjoyed, and never won.
Mother did not enjoy all the responsibility placed upon her as the eldest of five siblings. One day grandmother sent her to buy school shoes and she came home with heels instead. My grandmother was so mad that she made her walk to school in those shoes.
Mother said she learned her lesson.
The Fleury family went to church each Sunday. They were taught about the love of God and His desire to be first place in their lives. Mother’s heart was stirred and at the age of 16, felt called to be a missionary. I remember reading a letter she wrote to God, expressing her desire to fulfill that calling. That plan was interrupted when she met and married my father and that letter has since disappeared.
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Your friend, lanadee