Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Going Nuclear: Day Two. Context.

Before I get too far into this endeavor, I'll give you a rundown of the new place. After leaving our lives in Florida, we pulled into Spokane without a clue of what we were going to do. While I went to see family, Eric found us a home. It's big and beautiful, albeit a little dated, and we loved everything about it. But there is this one catch.
A father-in-law.
Yup, I'm not too proud to say that we moved into my father-in-laws home for a while. It's a 4 bedroom, 3.5 bath on 5 acres. It's a lovely place, with hidden piles of history everywhere.

My FIL inherited the house from his late wife, who had inherited the house from her parents in the 90s. That's about all that I knew when we arrived, but the deeper we tucked ourselves in to the new home, the more acquainted I became with the past occupants, as well as their history. After finding pile after pile of pictures, tintypes, letters, and newpaper clippings I have cultivated a relationship with the family.

This is a rather inconspicuous flour bag, but it's full of letters, kind regards, Merry Christmases, Happy Saint Patricks Days, Mother's Days, birthdays, and condolences. Then I realized that what I found has more value than any thing an estate buyer could have wanted.

I have been given an opportunity to witness lives through paper--the last piece of materiality that these people have. There is no memory of the stories within the letters I read, but I can see the faces in the pictures and imagine them living the experiences told. I'm getting to learn lives through a 3,000 square foot puzzle.

I'm happy to say that the pieces are coming together, and I'll share them with you.

It all started with an old War Ration book....

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