Tuesday, June 16, 2009

A Trip Down Memory Lane

I spent all day going through closets and boxes that we had hardly touched since moving into our house several years ago. I took pleasure in getting rid of some things, others I repacked and labeled for later use hopefully some wintry day when things are going at a slower pace. Still other things took me down memory lane. One item I found was my old autograph book.

Most Amish teenage girls have an autograph book that they get their friends to write their autograph. I was fifteen when Mom and Dad gave me this one for Christmas. I was very pleased and looked forward to my 16th birthday when I would get to join the youth group and have my friends sign it.

I opened the book and started reading the entries, some of them made me smile, others gave me mixed emotions but I treasured each and everyone. As I read them they took me back to the day they had been signed and what a wealth of memories they opened.

My Mom signed this on Christmas day after I asked her to be the first one to sign it. I am so glad I did even though it was not the normal thing to do, to get your mother to sign your book.

When I read this one I had to laugh. It was the very last one to be written into my book. It took me back to the day before our wedding, my cousins Emma, and Esther and their brother's girlfriend and I were in my room. We were reading the replies our wedding guests had sent and there was one in particular that struck our funny bone. One of my husbands uncles had written that they won't be able to attend but wish us a very "fruitful" marriage.
They of-course envisioned multiple sets of twins in my future.They had fun scribbling the verse in and handing it to me, but ironically I am getting the last laugh because they each have a set of twins!

This one takes me back to one of our trips to Canada to see Grandma Swarey and all the aunts, uncles, and cousins. We cousins were all sitting at one of the picnic tables visiting and having a grand old time when cousin Nathan made his entry. Though it held no truth at the moment I'm wondering if he had a prophetic streak that evening.

John found my autograph and made his entry after one of the first evenings my future husband came for a visit. David made his a few years later when it was officially announced that I would become the bride of a farmer!

Grandpa Mast signed his name to an entry that Grandma wrote. His hands were too shaky to write more than a few words at a time. But he could still tell stories, I enjoyed spending evenings with him several times a week until I got married. I will treasure this always.
There were many others from friends and cousins, aunts and uncles. I read them all and then tucked it into a box to be enjoyed again some other day.


  1. Oh thank you for sharing this. I loved reading each one!

  2. What a treasure! It's kinda fun to stroll down Memory Lane, isn't it?

  3. What a joy to have this wonderful autograph book! I enjoyed reading along with everyone of them. How sweet is the entry from your grandma and signed by your grandpa~! Wonderful!

  4. IT reminds me of letters written and passed between my friends and I, when we were in school. My friend saved them for us to look at when we grew up.

    Thanks for sharing.

  5. That was great! But the shape of a washing machine? That did make me giggle a bit!

  6. I have an autograph book of my mother's dated 1942. She has the same entry as you about coming to a house for safety pins!

  7. I used to have one of those but over the last 50 years have somehow lost it.
    I loved the one from your Mom .
    A treasure indeed.

  8. Wow, we have come a long ways from autograph books. I wonder if they are still the going thing among Amish girls?

  9. What a real treasure you found! When I was 16 we didn't have autograph books but we did have our yearbooks signed by our friends at school. I'm afraid that we didn't sign anything as sweet as what was signed in your book. Mostly kids would sign them names but there were some that would sign as best friends forever but some were mean.

    My daughter just finished up the 5th grade and I let her let her friends sign her year book this year and they just basically wrote their names. Some added their phone numbers so she could call them this summer.

    God Bless!

  10. What a treasure to have. Thanks for sharing it with us.


  11. What an AWESOME treasure!!!!!! I laugh when I read my old yearbooks that people signed - we just KNEW we'd be best friends forever - me and whoever! ha ha I think it's cute that most of your autographs were little poems.

  12. i love taking walks down memory lane, it's one of my favorite places to visit! love the autographs.


  13. Fantastic memories, relived. Oh how I wish I hadn't destroyed my autograph book. Thank you for sharing yours.

  14. What a beautiful post! I loved reading all of your sweet little messages!

  15. I loved reading these and reminicing with you of your sweet family. How ironic and funny that they ahd the twins and needed the 10 safety Pins. Your mother's and Grandfather's message brought tears. What a special family heritage you enjoy!

  16. You, AND that book, are a treasure. :) Thank you for allowing us in to a very special book of memories. That was precious and the washing machine verse made me laugh out loud!! lol (along with your quip!)

  17. This makes me want to get out my old high school yearbook and read the entries. My family members didn't sign it, though, and that's a shame not to have their input. I'm glad you had your family members sign your wonderful autograph book.

  18. What wonderful memories! Thank you for sharing this book with us, it's truly a lovely thing to have. Wishing you a happy day!
    Amanda (aka Cottage Contessa)

  19. A lovely keepsake. Full of the ability to stir memories.

    It's so good to get rid of things which have become just "stuff." But also so good to keep things, which are still loved.

    Aunt Amelia

  20. Thanks so much for taking us down memory lane with your book. It actually looks just like mine on the outside. We kids in Indiana had these too. What great memories!

  21. I had a sweet little book that I had family sign when I was younger...I have no idea where it is now and it is only after reading your entry that I realise what I have misplaced..thanks for the reminder!


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