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One aspect of my life that sometimes makes me sad is that I didn't know either set of grandparents very well. My paternal grandparents were both born and raised in a small New York town. They moved out to California after all three of their children had settled here. They moved to a small farm in Paradise and then when they could no longer keep up with the farm, they moved to Chico where they both died. My paternal grandmother died 24 Apr 1990, a day shy of her birthday. I was in seventh grade. My paternal grandfather died 17 Dec 1993. A couple weeks after his birthday. We lived about two hours away from them and we didn't take many trips to see them, nor did they make many trips to see us. I saw them about two to three times a year.

These two individuals still had a major impact on my life. When I did see them my father and his parents would talk about the good old days. My father would hassle my grandmother about not wanting to use a microwave, because she didn't trust technology. My grandmother would tell me about stories about our ancestors, especially the Graves family. Her mother's maiden name was Graves. She loved the Graves family and through the Graves family her and I are daughters of the American Revolution. She was very patriotic, something I am as well. She loved to write fiction and was fantastic. I was able to read some of her stories and poems after my grandfather passed away and we were holding some of their belongings for my aunt (their oldest child). I also love to write. She loved genealogy. I too love genealogy. She did not have the time or resources to research like I do, so she never did much research, but she was constantly encouraging me to research the family when I got old enough to do so.

My grandfather loved trains. Scratch that. My grandfather was obsessed with trains. This man had a model train set in his living room that he had built himself and that my younger brother and I were not allowed to touch or play with. He would run the trains for us. He also loved to talk about his ancestors and encouraged us to get to discover our roots.

My love of writing, genealogy, being more traditional than most, and wanting to desperately one day live in a small town I believe has everything to do with these two amazing people. I am writing about them today because as I was going over my paperwork for the DAR I discovered that 77 years ago today, these two wonderful people were married. Writing the date, 6 Aug 1932 made me nostalgic. I have been thinking about them ever since. Trying to picture their wedding day, the moment when my grandfather proposed, the thoughts and feelings they had for one another, etc. My heart is so warm today with their love.

I just wanted to share their love with you and give you a glimpse of who they were. I am proud to say that Kenneth Charles Watson and Dorothy Marion Eagen were my grandparents. I miss them and everyday I wish I had been able to get to know them better. God bless them!

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Comment by Christine Gibbins on August 7, 2009 at 12:52pm
Jennifer, wonderful and warm hearted, I can relate to your thoughts, my mother died aged 59, I was too busy growing up to really realise just what a wonderful lady she was and how hard her life must have been. Now I look back and wish she could have seen my son grow up, marry and have two wonderful boys, how much pleasure she would have had. We just seem to rush through life and forget to take stock of our lives and family. I think that is why I am doing the family tree. Thanks to my Mum in Law for getting me started.


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