Sunday, March 28, 2010

Family Stories

I had breakfast with my uncle and grandmother the other morning. It was a mix of delightful and annoying ... as interactions with families tend to be. But it was a lot more delightful than it was annoying. I got to hear a lot of stories I'd never heard before and learn a little bit more about my uncle, grandmother and grandfather. The whole experience reminded me of a project I once wanted to do. It renewed my desire to pursue this project. I would like to take an entire year and drive around the country, living with family members and collecting stories about their lives. Hearing things they remember, especially as it pertains to my grandmother and grandfather on my dad's side. Just in the one hour I spent with one uncle and my grandmother I heard at least three new stories. I know my cousins all have something to share, and we seem to be a family of storytellers.
I have, as you know, been reading a lot of Donald Miller lately and his book, along with his blog, ar encouraging me to try to figure out a way to do this.
Anybody have any ideas of grants I can try to get for this little project of mine?
I have some other, not-expensive ideas for something similar as well. For example, a family collective National Novel Writing Project with each arm of the family being assigned to about 1200 words of story from family life. It would be less expensive and less work for me, but more work for my family and would be great for their own growth, but I would be less a part of the process ... although we'd still get to read each other's stories. I've thought about also binding the collection of stories and giving them as gifts as part of Advent Conspiracy and at our family gathering having the authors of the stories read them out loud and recording it for my grandmother, since her eyesight is not the best anymore.
So that's an alternative to the big project, but it's not quite as fun.
Any ideas for me or for yourself?


h51773 said...

My dad did something similar for my grandfather... he recorded the stories that my grandpa told about his childhood and had the recording transcribed. For Christmas that year he gave everyone a copy of the transcription and the recording... It is now more meaningful than ever because it has both my grandpa's and my dad's voice on it... You could have everyone record stories and send them to you...

The Wibbler said...

I cried when I read that. Maybe I will do that. Great idea, Hannah.