The Story of Vera and Her Family, Chapter 8

7 02 2008

CHAPTER 8    NEW HOME, NEW SCHOOL, NEW LIFE

Our adrenalin poured as we packed and visited with our friends. One neighborhood family had us over to eat grilled hamburgers. Another family brought supper over for us our last evening at the house. Matthew’s mom ( the bookcase lady) gave me enough Mary Kay make up to last for years as she was closing down that business. Phillip, arrived by Greyhound bus, to help us load our rented moving truck. He was delegated to drive the moving truck.We made $2000.00 after we paid off our home and paid the realtors. It took half of that money for moving expenses.. We paid all of deposits and our first month rent out of that money. We then put the remaining money in a savings account.

I’ll never forget moving morning. Phillip and Ben were in the moving truck. The rest of us were in the Toyota . As we backed out of the driveway, we saw Bandid, the neighborhood cat. That cat had been around for seven years. All of the neighbors fed him. It was a beautiful fall morning. That was the last time we viewed our home and the little creek. We stopped in Gardendale, a northern part of Birmingham, to eat breakfast with our friends, Grandma Jacobs ( not our children’s real grandma) and Aunt Patricia.. They were such special friends to our family. Thus, on Friday afternoon the 18th of October we arrived at our four bedroom home in Kentucky.  (And we still live there today in 2008, only now we own it.)

Ben and Sandy ran upstairs and claimed the two bedrooms. You and Maria shared a large bedroom downstairs. Just like Teresa had told us–we had a huge backyard. Later when we bought our home, it was described as a lot and a half. Phillip and Teresa invited us to eat with them. Teresa made a big pot of chilli. We walked over there and walked back. It was a fantastic evening. Dad had gotten all of the beds put together before we went over there for supper. By Saturday, everything was unpacked and in place, except for our large piano. That had to wait until Sunday morning. We needed at least six men to help move it from the moving truck into the living room..

On Monday morning each of you were enrolled at the nearby elementary school. The principal had been my P.E. teacher when I was in elementary school.. After the enrollment process, Dad and I spent the day doing errands. We didn’t want you children to ride the school bus home that first day. We told the school that we would be picking up our children. At the end of the school day, Ben and Sandy were waiting. You and Maria had been put on the school bus. Frantically, we arrived at the house to find you girls crying on the porch. The nice elderly man across the street from our house (my now son-in-laws grandfather was comforting you both. He died in l988 but his wife remained our wonderful neighbor until she passed in l999.)

On Tuesday morning, a lady knocked at my door. She wanted to find out who we were and where we were from. Even though it had been over twenty years , I recognized her as the lady who used to live directly behind my grandmother’s home. She was overjoyed to find out who we were. My mother had taught one of her sons in the fourth grade. Her husband had done handyman work on grandmother’s home many times. The Genner’s became like grandparents to you children. What a gift from God they were to our family.

Now remember how I wrote that Birmingham was ahead of with their learning centers? Well, there were no learning centers in your new first grade class. Your teacher was not happy that you had no experience with proper handwriting and spelling. You had to start from scratch learning penmanship on those special primary writing tablets. As always, you learned fast and adapted to everything so well. You were and still are “a messy” . Your intellect always and still gets you out of the frying pan of academic trouble.

There was nothing pretty about our first couple of weeks in Kentucky as far as weather was involved. It rained ten days in a row. I didn’t have a  clothes dryer. All attempts to hang out laundry failed. I had gotten used to hanging cloths out in Birmingham when our dryer broke. We had fair weather for most seasons in Alabama. . Now I was very frustrated. We still had a little money left from our moving fund. Dad bought me a used dryer.

I had grown up attending First Baptist Church in our town. I was baptized there when I was ten. My grandmother had been a part of the First Baptist Church from the onset of her marriage in l912. Mother was raised in that church. It was a given that we would attend church there with our young family. It was fun for me to introduce my family to so many who had known me as a child growing up. Many of my Sunday school teachers were now your Sunday school teachers. What a rich tradition.

Christmas rolled around to fast. We had our savings but we were afraid to touch it for Christmas gifts. So Christmas was very simple that year. My brother Brad and his dog, Harpo, came and spent Christmas with us. We enjoyed their company ! I never spent much time with Brad when I was growing up. That evening was the beginning of getting to know my brother , Brad, much better. As the year came to the end, we knew that we made the right decision about moving to Kentucky. We didn’t know anything much that evening except that we were peaceful –having successfully made a gigantic step of faith by moving to Kentucky.

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