December 21, 2011

One of my daughters wishes to give her nephew her Christmas table yule log. Our daughter inherited this from her parents who in turn had inherited it from her grandparents (my folks). Did I have information, she inquired, regarding the origins of this family treasure? My wife knew how and when we acquired this treasure. She suggested I view our photo discs to possibly find a picture of the yule log set festively on a Christmas table . Sure enough – a picture in my folk’s home in St. Louis with their grandchildren ranged around (my cousins).  Another similar setting on the occasion of my wife’s fortieth birthday celebrated in St. Louis.  Our grandson, my daughter’s nephew, will be in possession of his great-grandparent’s gift to our Bartling lineage.  Pictures of his -great grandparents, his grandmother, and great uncles and aunts. What follows is some musing on my part regarding  THE CIRCLE OF LIFE   when our children received the family photo discs at Christmas time.

“Memories come to mind when downsizing our family slide collection to DVD format. 916 photos on four discs dated 1958 to 1985. Family picture taking is usually a time of positive family experience. A quarter century of Bartling family photos suggests a theme similar to the animated film The Lion King:  THE  CIRCLE OF LIFE.   A man and woman marry, founding a family – children arrive – baptisms infant years – school years friendships made – holidays celebrated – religious observances – graduations – camping and vacations – new beaus and countships – engagements – weddings – grandchildren and cousins – extended family relationships – reunions – grandparents and great-grandparents – uncles and aunts – the passing of loved ones. Family is a school for character and microcosm of society. How meaningful then that our family is ENCIRCLED BY GRACE. GRACE coming that first Christmas as God’s incarnated love will always as in our family’s past will encircle your family in its future CIRCLE OF LIFE.  With love to our children and grandchildren for sharing our g eneration’s CIRCLE OF LIFE.  Gratefully – Pater et Mater Familias”

Published by profbartling1

Retired professor Concordia University, St. Paul, Mn. Taught mainly American History. Also taught in other areas of history, philosophy, and theology,

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