Sunday, March 20, 2011

Normal Living, A Sepia Saturday Post

I've been moving files from my old PC to my new laptop.
I came across this photo that had been misfiled under
"Nugget" our bunny's picture file. lol.
This photo was taken in front of my home in Normal, Illinois 1964.
Left to right is my grandfather, uncles Tom and Steve, grandmother,
mother, father, sister and me. I turned three years old that year!
Grandma died just 5 years later. I'm sorry she left us so soon.
I would love to have her in my life these days. Grandpa lived
until 2007! Don't you love our cute little dresses? I don't
know the occasion, but we certainly look like we've been
to church. We moved from Normal to Decatur, Illinois
in 1966. My limited memories of living here are...


1. Playing hide-and-see in the back yard.

2. Riding in the patrol car (my dad was chief of police) and looking in the jail cells at any one that happened to be locked up. This was the 60's folks...probably more like Mayberry than anything else. I also remember "Max" the white German Shepherd K-9.

3. Sneaking a half bottle of vitamins so I could be strong enough to do cartwheels like the big kids.

4. An attempt at a pet kitten but it kept running 'home'.

5. Having handfuls of 'pet' worms that I kept in the window wells around the house.

6. Our black VW Beetle. I sat in the 'well' in the 'way back'

7. We literally moved to a house across the street during
our time in Normal! I guess sometimes the grass really is greener!
The only thing I remember about the move is a
man rolling the washer or dryer down the street on a dolly!
A few years ago I was back in Normal and got to see these
two houses we lived in. They were so tiny and the yards were
tiny, too! Funny how that back yard seemed huge to me when
I was a toddler. Don't you wish we could time-travel?
I'd love to do back for a day and see all the things my mind
has forgotten! At least we have some photos, right?

I didn't have my camera that day! Too bad!

This is a Sepia Saturday post!

Click HERE to visit other old photos and stories!


  1. Old forgotten photos are always so memory provoking! Isn't it amazing how they can bring us right back to the moment they were taken?

    A relative recently sent us home movies they had converted from tape to DVD. My husband was 21 years old in them and it was fun seeing him in the early 70's in his hippie garb..lol!

  2. What fun seeing old pictures again. I've often wished I could go back in time too. I think many things would look different to us as adults!

  3. I love the picture! It is always funny to go back and see how small things are when they seemed so big when we were growing up.

  4. Just reading through your blog amazes me. Where do you find the time to read other's blogs let alone write your own and raise a family? God Bless you. I love your Sepia Saturday post. Everyone all dressed up for a special photo. Thanks for visiting my crazy blog! :)

  5. Aw, thanks Cool Fox. :) Blogging is a wonderful outlet, isn't it?

  6. I have a photo of my siblings, parents, grandparents and one uncle which would have been taken around the same time. The poses and the clothing are interchangeable with those in your photo.

    I have a similar memory of my early childhood home as well. It seemed big, but when I drove by it 15 or 20 years ago it was really small.

  7. Old photos are so fun. Last year my sister and I made digital images of all the old family slides. I'd love to go back to my house in Chicago and walk around the block and see what changes have been made. Back then, I knew every crack in the sidewalks! And yes, the yards seemed so small!

  8. Such a sweet post Betsy! It's always good to remember when...my mom made all my dresses when I was growing up, so I have pictures just like these. Thanks for sharing and letting us peek into your past with you. You really did find a nugget in Nugget's file! =)

  9. Aw, you were a cutie! You're right about "sizes." Several times I've bought a toy on eBay which I originally owned as a 6-year-old, a 9-year-old, etc., and thought "Wow, I remember this as being a lot bigger!" And boy, would I love to own a time machine! If I could change a few things in my life, I'd probably be richer... and maybe even married!

  10. What a wonderful trip dowm memory lane for you Betsy. I just love looking at old photos & trying to remember that moment in time. Sometimes I can remember and other times I'm left wondering. Your dresses are adorable and your grandmother looks like she would have been the perfect Nanna ... I bet she gave great cuddles. Loved this post Betsy! Thanks for sharing!

  11. Times were so simple then. I once went back to see a house I lived in and it was knocked down. A giant new home stands on the property now. I was really disappointed. Glad you got to see yours.

  12. Is that Bach in the picture? Is he your dad's brother?
    I love this picture!When you find more post them...I could look at other people's photos endlessly. I know what you mean about things looking bigger when we were all little..seems so strange. Which side of your family has the Native American heritage? Your mom's? How pretty and tall she was.
    Today would have been my grandma's 122nd birthday...She was 92 when she died..I wish I could still ask her things...I have so many questions.

  13. Kim ~ right..that's Bach! I put embedded links in there for people to click. That's why the font is black. He's my dad's brother.

    The Cherokee and Irish are on my mom's side. My dad's side was Scottish.

    92 years..wow...your grandmother lived a nice, long life!

  14. I love looking at old pictures. Your mom is quite a beauty!

  15. Oh, don't you just look so very cute and one can clearly see it is you, I knew it before i even read the text.;)
    You certainly do recall a lot from that time - what did your mom think about the worms in the windows.;)
    Do you know who might have taken the photo?
    And I know all about revisiting ones childhood homes and finding the surroundings so very tiny...
    Have a lovely Saturday,

  16. I love looking back at old photos. So many of them bring back as you say, long forgotten memories. It's funny how when I look at an old picture, I don't remember much about it, where we were, what was going on, and so on. And then I'll look at another photo and the memories come flooding back, and I can remember details about the when, where and what about that picture.

    And yes, I have memories about riding in a patrol car too. Just a bit different than yours. Some time I'll tell you about it.

  17. Betsy. Glad you found that photograph. Showing, as it does, a unique gathering of some of the finest bloggers of their generation, it should be gifted to the Blogger Archives.
    Lovely to have you back in Sepia land.

  18. Old photos always make me feel nostalgic. A wonderful photo and interesting little tales to go with it.

  19. Time travel....yes, I would love it. Photos sure bring back a flood of memories. I love getting the albums out and spending hours on the floor reliving moments in time.
    I love your sepia picture...

  20. playing hide and seek is the best....cool pic betsy...nice to look back, smile at the styles and the faces that still look a bit familiar even in those no longer with us...

  21. Loved the flashback. It is really a treat to find old and unexpected photos.

  22. Katherine ~ she was the perfect size and shape for a grandma! haha. I was only 8 when she died but I only have good memories of her. She was sweet and tenderhearted.

  23. Zuzana ~ I was wondering who took the picture, too! It probably was another uncle but I'm not sure.

  24. Zuzana ~ I was wondering who took the picture, too! It probably was another uncle but I'm not sure.

  25. Yes. Love the dresses, the socks and the shoes. We "womenn of a certain age" remember wearing nice clothes not just to church but to dinner & shopping & whatnot. Don't forget gloves & hats.

  26. Cali Girl ~ yes, I remember dressing up to go shopping! Nobody does that these days!

  27. I felt absolutely transported by your descriptions. How wonderful, and what a classic photo. Those early days seemed so carefree to me too. I wonder if children today feel that way too.

  28. What a lovely family group. We never seem able to get our grandchildren in one place at the same time.
    I am always amazed by how small the house where I was born really is; it must have shrunk.

  29. Hi Betsy,

    What a wonderful family photo ... and your memories helped me to reflect on mine. Thanks so much for the great post, and for stopping by to say hello.

    Take care,


  30. Oh you have brought back memories of my pet tadpoles. I collected them into a coke bottle from along a stream that ran from a waterfall in Hawaii. Held the bottle in my lap the whole way home, excited at the prospect of having little frogs. Unfortunately I couldn't keep my hands off of them, they were so fascinating. I watched them as they transformed, but only one became a wee frog. I adored the little frog. Out of the seven tadpoles he was the only one to survive. Then one day I went to see him and he was gone. I guess he'd had it with me and simply hopped away from my needy hands.

  31. Tattered ~ oh, that is a sweet story! Shall we say that the other six were just loved to death from too much attention? :)

  32. Hi Betsy,
    Loved your post. Oh, what fun to be able to look into the jail cells and ride in the police car!
    Is Decatur near Dixon? That's where I was born-but didn't live there. Lots of relatives there, tho, and lots of holiday visits.

  33. (My name is Cynthia and I played with worms...) Betsy! you are the second person who has written about pet worms. I always thought I was the only person in the world who did that. Knowing there are at least two others on the planet is helpful. My mother was horrified, horrified I tell ya! Through the years she'd remind me about it. I think she'd put reminders on her calendar: Make a really disgusting face and remind Cynthia about the worms. Apparently she didn't know about the slugs and pill bugs... Excellent post and wonderful picture. I feel better about myself.

  34. Wonderful picture and memories. They look like really good people. A little photoshoppery could really enhance that photograph though.

  35. loved your photo and memeories, you would have gotten along wonderful with my baby brother who dumped out his clothes in one of his dresser drawers and filled it with dirt for his pet snails :)

  36. That picture is so you. I miss her.

  37. while i went "yuk" at the pet worms... i had a giggle at the picture of you in that VW beetle...

    but i can't get over the name of the city, living in "NORMAL"!! what are people living in "NORMAL" called??

  38. Ticklebear ~ I know...what a strange name!

  39. Tracie ~ oh yes...don't let that cute little dress fool you! I had pet caterpillars in my bedroom that spun cocoons on the furniture! lol.

  40. Love the picture, and you are so cute, and that little dress you are wearing..

    You childhood memories sure take me back.

    This was a wonderful post, and another glimpse into Betsy. Thanks.

  41. I love the photo, Betsy. Lovely memories... and I would have recognised you anywhere!

  42. What a lovely photo. Those dresses are lovely. I agree going back to a house you grew up in seems so much smaller. I had that experience last year and in my mind it was larger.

  43. Such a wonderful old photos... You are sooo cute! Love reading all your memories. You would think that the things we remember from our pasts would be more momentus, yet it's the simple things that leave a lasting impression! :-)

  44. What a wonderful photo to have, it's lovely of you all but your mother is simply gorgeous! Loved your childhood memories. Recently I have been writing notes on mine, I would love to write them properly for my brand new granddaughter some day.

  45. You're sister doesn't look to happy in that photo
    I guess she wanted to go
    It's nice seeing things you forgot
    Or rather forgot to remember as you grow in your rut
    Things do see tiny now
    As before they did wow
    Yes it be fun to time travel
    But that could make things unravel
    As depending on the theory
    Things could get dark and dreary
    If you messed up one little thing
    You might not be alive to sing
    Or what happened can't be changed
    Even by the deranged
    Who knows unless it's be done
    But it would be fun

  46. #6~~my...er...Mom & Pop's Beetle, was white.

    E'en tho' I was barely four at th' time, I still remember my Gran ( Mom's Mom )...still miss 'em both...


  47. It is a wonderful photo and it is a great posting. I had fun reading about all the memories.

  48. The dresses! Oh, the dresses! You were a cutie.

  49. Ah, Betsy, isn't it amazing how perspectives of size change when we change sizes? Your mother was so TALL! And beautiful. You had some fun times as a child, giving you great memories now. Great post!

  50. Family is so special and what can be more fun then finding lost pictures you've forgotten about, or maybe never saw before! Very nice family photo...The city Normal reminds me of a movie I saw...maybe it's that town! Nice Sepia post,thanks! BTW thanks for stopping by my blog and I'm going to travel along with yours too!

  51. A trip down memory lane. I love looking at my old famil photos of when I was a kid. Everything is dated in a good way in your photo... but ya know what? I'd wear your mom's dress today! :)


I'm serving coffee! Stay and chat!
And no awards, please! Your comments are my awards!