Wayside Gardens: There are Stories to be Told: Start a Family Tradition

One of the most rewarding ways to use your outdoor living space is to gather your family members for a reunion. Perhaps it's a small group that gets together annually, or a large one whose far-flung members attend every two or five or even 10 years. Whether large or small, a reunion is a wonderful opportunity to knit families closer together through shared stories.In the much-underrated 1990 film Avalon, a Russian immigrant to 1940s America relates the disintegration of his family ties. In his young manhood, his children gathered at the feet of older relatives during family gatherings and listened to tales of their heritage and history. As television took hold of society in the late '50s, children and adults alike opted for the entertainment of television personalities, instead of the stories of their roots.But just as the art of listening to stories has gone by the wayside, so has the art of telling them. Here's how to re-start a tradition of storytelling at your family reunion.
Advise all who will be attending that there will be an opportunity to tell some stories about the family, and let them know you'd love to hear them share something. Especially encourage older ones to think about their children when they were young, their own childhood, or even stories they may remember from their parents. With only a little effort, you can be hearing about things that happened over a century ago.




Have some questions prepared to start the ball rolling. "Where did your family go on vacation when your children were small?" "How did you and Grandpa meet?" "What's the funniest thing one of your children ever did?" "How did you manage through tough times?"




Encourage storytellers to use descriptions that will engage all of the senses. Was the thunder rolling in the distance just before the downpour when Grandma and Grandpa bumped into each other running for cover? Did the scent of the lilacs in Aunt Ellen's garden waft in through her kitchen window? Was there a cool breeze on the beach near the family vacation campsite? Did the sun sparkle off the snow on the mid-winter drive to Uncle Max's? Was the strawberry jam your mom made the sweetest you ever tasted? Use touch, smell and taste as well as sight and sound to bring the scene to life for listeners.




The best stories have a point. "That's when I first learned how important it is to be on time." "If it hadn't rained that day, we might never have met, and most of you would never have been born!" It doesn't have to be profound, but be prepared to help your tellers wrap up their stories with a short statement of its significance.




Get the younger ones involved too -- perhaps you can encourage them to be official family historians who will record the stories. If there's a group, give them papers and drawing materials and ask them to make pictures of the scenes they will hear unfold. You can have the older ones label the drawings and then gather them together with ribbon. Each family can take home their personal family album.




If there are old photographs that support an account, or a time period, mount these in archive quality materials and display them in a shady spot or pass them around while the story is being told. Use other mementos as well. Your great-grandfather's railroad watch that he wore to work every day for 45 years, or a playbill from your first date will help bring life to the accounts of those special times.


So gather your loved ones on your porch or patio and make some memories while you start a storytelling tradition [EXTRACT] One of the most rewarding ways to use your outdoor space is to bring family members for a meeting. It may be a small group that meets annually, or a large one, whose vast members attend every two or five or even 10 years. Whether large or small, a meeting is a wonderful opportunity for families closer to point through sharing stories.In very underrated 1990 film Avalon, a Russian immigrant of 1940 the United States refers to the disintegration of the bonds his family. In his youth, his children gathered at the feet of their older relatives at family gatherings and listened to stories of their heritage and history. As television took over the company in the late 50's, kids and adults alike opted for the entertainment of television characters, rather than the stories of their roots. But as the art of listening to stories has gone astray, so has the art of counting. That's like starting a tradition of storytelling in a family reunion. We advise all who will attend there will be an opportunity to tell stories about the family and let them know you'd like to hear something to share. Especially encouraging older people to think about their children when they were small, their own childhood, or stories they can remember their parents. With a little effort, you can learn about things that happened a century ago. Have a question ready to start the ball rolling. "Where did your family go on vacation when her children were young?" "How and grandma?" "What is the funniest thing your child ever did?" "How did you manage through difficult times?" Encourage tellers to use descriptions that involve all the senses. It was the thunder in the distance just before the rain when the grandmother and grandfather bumped into each other to cover running? Does the scent of lilac in the garden of Aunt Elena float through your kitchen window? Had a cool breeze on the beach near the camping family vacation? The sun shone on the snow in the unity of the middle of winter with Uncle Max? Strawberry jam was your mom made sweeter than ever tasted? Using touch, smell and taste and sight and sound to the scene of life for listeners. The best stories have a point. "That's when I learned how important it is to arrive on time." "If it had not rained that day may never have met, and most of you never been born! "There has to be deep, but be prepared to help their cash to complete their stories with a brief discussion of its meaning. Get involved younger too - maybe you can encourage them to be official historians of the family to write the stories. If a group, give them paper and drawing materials and ask them to take pictures of the scenes they will hear unfold. You can have the label of the oldest in the drawings and then meet with the tape. Every family can take home their personal and family album. If there are old photographs that support a bill, or a period of time, mount these files with quality materials and displays them in a shady spot or moves around while the story is being told. Use other memories too. See his great-grandfather was rail to work every day for 45 years, or a hand program your first appointment will help to give life to the accounts of those special moments. So gather your loved ones on the porch or patio and make some memories as a narrative tradition begins
There was an error in this gadget