Many folks are gearing up for holiday travel…some of you may have already embarked on your journeys and I hope everyone arrives safely! I won’t be going to the lovely home pictured here, but in a way, it is my grandmother’s house. This house was to have been my great grandparents’ residence, built through the Cumberland Homestead Act under President Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal. They ended up moving to Michigan so my great grandpa could get a better paying job in a steel mill and never lived in the house. It now serves as a living history museum for the Homestead. While I would love to have this house in my family, I’m glad that it has been preserved in a way to show what life was like when it was new.
My great grandpa also helped to build this stone bridge which still stands near the site of the house at Cumberland Mt. State Park. He was a talented man with a very rich life. This will be our first Christmas since he went to Heaven and while I know he is rejoicing now, it’s still hard to celebrate such a joyous time (that he got such a kick out of) without him.
I know everybody isn’t as fortunate as my family to have tangible things to stand as monuments to the ones they love. When I visit this bridge, I will always think of him and what kind of a person he was. Or when I visit the Homestead Museum, I can think of my great grandmother and the house she would have had. Even in cases where there is nothing physical to remember them by, we can still live our lives in ways that honor our loved ones. I want to make my great grandparents proud and treat people the way they would have expected me to treat them. I might fail at this lots of the time, but it’s still something that matters to me.
Let’s all hold our loved ones close this year and remember fondly the ones who aren’t with us anymore. Happy Hump Day!