Let's pretend today is Friday. Its close enough. I just know that if I wait to post this until tomorrow I will forget.
My Grandpa is currently compiling his personal history. My sister Chelsea has been his little gopher, helping him with all the things that require more than dial-up internet. They have spent months writing, editing, copying, etc. to make sure that the history is perfect (if you know my Grandfather, you would expect nothing less). Since my sister recently started a new job, I was asked to help out a little. And I say little, because my sister has helped my Grandpa with 95% of the history. My job has been to scan 182 original photos into our computer, organize them in numerical order and put them in a pretty little file to accompany the personal history. My grandpa has a word document with numbers and descriptions that match each of the photos. I've spent the last few days scanning, scanning, and scanning some more (a lot of the pictures had weird borders and shapes since they were so old).
And we're talking old, people.
The very first one I scanned was an original photo from 1895 of my Grandma's Grandfather. It was printed on something that resembled cardboard and it answered a lot of lingering questions I've had about my genetic makeup.
Dear David Alfred Dall (age 25 in this photo),
Thank you for explaining why I am so ridiculously good looking.
If Mr. Darcy and Liam Hemsworth were goofing off on the internet and put their photos together on morphthing.com, this is what their implausible child would look like.
Genes don't lie.
Thanks for a lifetime of self-confidence.
I also think David could pass for Elton on Clueless. Survey says?
Okay, but seriously, I have had such a blast going through these photos. Nick kept asking me what was taking me so long to scan them besides the obvious (I'm a loser when it comes to technology), I have been reading all the notes my Grandpa wrote in the word document as well as the backs of each photo. I have had so much fun being nosy. At least I feel nosy reading the backs of photos that don't belong to me. I have learned so much about my family by reading the details on the back of each photo.
And I've barely even mentioned the actual photos!
They are R-A-D.
No filter on Instagram can produce photos like these (and I know everyone thinks I'm an Insta-hater, but I'm not). I just prefer the real deal - not someone's sepia colored coffee cup delicately placed at a perfect diagonal over their ikat cloth napkin.
I mean, you can't fake the awesomeness of this photo:
(My grandparents, while they were dating - the caption said this picture was taken in Calgary, I believe)
Or this photo:
My Grandma Delores = Babe
(I think she would be mortified if she heard me say that about her)
My Grandparents grew up in Picture Butte, Alberta, Canada.
Here they are in grade school together:
My Grandpa, age 16.
I would be a horrible granddaughter if I didn't include this one. My Grandpa loves cars (UNDERSTATEMENT). The description for this photo was a huge paragraph long, describing in great detail how much they paid for each car and how long it took my Grandparents to pay the cars off. (The one on the left cost $300, with a down payment of $25)
My Grandpa, age 3.
My Grandparents on their wedding day.
March 20, 1952, in front of the Alberta Temple.
This is another old one. Wedding photo of Charles Thomas Atwood and Sarah Agnes McIntyre dated November, 1 1900.
I think they would be Great(x4) Grandparents, but I'm terrible at math so don't quote me.
Charles looks exactly like Tarzan's dad in the Disney movie Tarzan.
And I'm not just saying that because he has a mustache.
Okay... maybe its because he has a mustache.
This picture is also one of my faves.
It was taken in 1914 at the Charles Atwood homestead near Grassy Lake, Alberta.
I love it because my Grandma Grape (Great Grandmother Luella) is just a toddler - she's sitting in the wagon on the right. She died when I was 10/11 (I can't remember which) and she is the only one of my Great Grandparents that I have vivid memories of.
This picture was taken in 1935.
My Grandma is on the far left looking adorable.
I think my youngest cousin Campbell, kind of looks like my Grandma in this picture.
What say ye, Hague cousins?
My Grandma Delores and my Grandpa's Grandma Atwood.
I wish my Grandma still had this dress because I would steal it and wear it.
I seriously had a Mean Girls moment when I saw my Grandma in this dress:
"Ohmygosh, I love your dress, where did you get it?"
"It was my Grandma's ... in the 50's."
Minus all the "ugliest effin'" talk, because this dress is anything but ugly - its amazeballs.
All four of my maternal Great Grandparents.
Wilfred and Luella Hague (L) and Ross and Eva Salmon (R).
This is a picture of my Grandpa at the mission home in 1950. I only mention this because on the back of the picture he mentions that he's standing behind Phillip Redd from Raymond. (My Grandpa is on the far right of row four)
MONICA REDD HARKER - are you related to Phillip Redd because that would be fantastic.
Please enlighten me.
Other cool facts I learned while acting as family picture scanner:
1. My Grandpa took the S.S. Franconia out of New York to reach his mission in England. The journey took 10 days (including stops in Halifax and Cork, before reaching his destination of Liverpool) and was difficult due to horrible seasickness.
2. My Grandfather's missionary license was signed by George Albert Smith, J. Reuben Clark and David O. Mckay.
3. My Grandpa served with an Elder Barfus! (Worst last name ever)
4. My Grandpa included several pay stubs from his career as a banker. One pay stub from 1966 listed that he made $8,600 per year. Grandpa's notes on the back said they had FIVE children at the time and focused heavily on budgeting.
My Grandma Delores and her family, 1935.
She's the cutie in the front left.
1904, Cumberland, England.
My Grandpa's Grandmother Jane and her firstborn son, John Rayson Hague.
This is my favorite picture of all of them. Technically its not one of the 182 that I scanned, but it's in a frame in our house and I've loved it for a long time. I finally scanned it and emailed it to myself so I can have a copy in my apartment. It's my Grandpa on his mission in England. There are no notes on the back so I'm not sure where he is in England (or maybe Scotland?) or what year it is (I'm guessing 1950/1951).
But it reminds me of a story my Grandma told me once. I had asked her what it was like when she and Grandpa were finally reunited after his mission (they were engaged before he left). She said she was so excited to see him, but when she finally saw him she was disappointed because he didn't look like the Canadian boy she fell in love with. Instead he looked like an "Old Brit," because he had a big top hat on and he was dressed all fancy. She said he reverted back to his Canadian ways quite quickly.
I kind of love that he looks like an "Old Brit," here.
I seriously could have put so many more pictures on here, but I'm trying to restrain myself.
Well sort of... when it comes to myself, we all know I have no restraint.
This is me at two years old.
I found this when I was going through pictures this week and I won't lie, I got super excited when I saw it because I see a little bit of Evie in it. Not a lot, Ev mostly looks like Nick, but I was pumped to see that she could physically be related to me (albeit, distantly).
Nick does not understand why this is such a sensitive issue for me. Let me explain. When I pictured what my daughters would look like (my whole life), I always assumed they would look like me (or my sisters) because A) everyone in my family looks the same, so our genes must be dominant and B) they would be my daughters and therefore girls and I wanted them to look like me, their mom. But when Ev was born and she looked exactly like Nick, I was happily surprised. Even though she looked half-vampire with her white skin and blue eyes, I still knew she was mine.
Then as she got older people would say, "She's beautiful! But she looks nothing like you!"
Que: FACE PUNCH.
Or I'd be at the grocery store and people would ask if I was her babysitter or nanny just because she didn't look like me. I contemplated carrying her birth certificate around with me or wearing a t-shirt that said, "The vampire baby belongs to the Kardashian." I mean, there are weirder things that have happened right? It is strange that Ev has blue eyes despite having one parent with brown eyes and one with hazel. But I have seen way rarer recessive genes. And that is why I get so testy when random strangers "can't believe" she's mine.
That said, I would never change anything about the way Ev looks. She's just a beauty! And even though I can't claim much but her hair and lips, I will claim those all day everyday because she's just so pretty. And I realize that I sound like delusional narcissistic psycho while trying to explain myself right now, but its only because I'm a delusional narcissistic pregnant psycho, which is code for even
I'm not that crazy though, right? Ev looks a little like me in this picture? The mouth, maybe? The hair, minus the cray-cray British Schman bangs I've got goin' on, perhaps? The nose, possibly?
Someone please validate me so I can sleep tonight.
Or lie to me so I can feel like my daughter looks a teeny bit like me so I don't insano-punch the next moron who questions whether or not I am her mother.
And I'm mostly kidding about all of this because in all seriousness, I love that Ev looks so much like her Dad. They share so many facial expressions and I have to laugh when Ev does things that remind me of Nick. Some of my favorite facial expressions in each of them are the exact same, which is pretty adorable. Plus, having a fair-skinned, blue-eyed child has taught me many life skills including:
1. Learning how to apply sunscreen properly for the first time in my life.
2. Always keeping sunscreen in my car, purse and diaper bag for the fair-one.
3. How to appropriately use the color blue to accentuate someone's eyes. Who knew that colors like mint green, royal blue and yellow looked so good on blue-eyed people? (Now I do)
And really, when some idiot is like, "Geez, you look nothing alike," and I get super annoyed, I have to laugh because 7 seconds later my Evster whips out the sass and cleverly reminds me that she is my offspring. Because we all know I can claim 100% of my baby's sassafras.
Ev, you can thank me later for that.
Plus, there is no rule that says best friends have to look alike.