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On the Shoulders of Giants

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Tuesday, July 19, 2011

On the Shoulders of Giants

You know when you are little and everyone seems so big? Well in my family, the men were larger than big – they were giants. It makes me smile just to think of it. These great big men that carried our family on their shoulders. To others, they might have been just regular old men, but they have passed down this booming personality and enormous heart that made them appear larger than life.
And these great big men hold my family on their shoulders. And it fills my heart with love and pride ~ that someday I might raise giants too.

Eberly and Sadie Stottlemyer were my great grandparents. From Eberly, my dad inherited his love of woodworking and his intimidating stature. I never met “Pap Pap,” but I can see by the way my family members talk about him that he was loved. Incredibly loved. And the only way you get love like that is to give it. Yesterday we had our family reunion. While other family reunions are dwindling, ours continues to be filled with excited faces… Shoulders of Giants. We hold an auction every year to help cover the costs of the food. Each year a “prized” possession is auctioned off. Last year it was a Stottlemyer rocker like the ones HERE. This year it was a chalk portrait of Pap Pap and Mam Mam. We all bought tickets. Some of us bought lots of tickets. My cousin who won jumped up and down shouting with excitement…. Shoulders of Giants.
I’ve already talked about the special bond between my Grandfather and myself. My dad’s dad had a way of making all his grandchildren feel very special. At The Darling Graduate’s party, almost an entire scrapbook was devoted to pictures of her with him. Shoulders of a Giant. My own father is busy building that relationship with his grandchildren. My kids have a standing date – every Tuesday with Pappy. We build things in his woodworking shop. We play on the fun toys he’s brought back to life from my childhood. We take nature hikes. His personality booms. His heart loves. Giants.

It is not only my father who was raised to step into those giant footsteps. My Great Uncle – Pappy’s Brother – is still a giant man. When I look at him, my heart is completely filled with love. Love for the person that he is - a Pappy. He might not be my Pappy… but he is an amazing one. He booms that sweet personality. The smile that only graces his face when he is happy. The quiet jokes that you have to lean in to hear. The hugs that come willingly and you just sink into them. Shoulders of Giants. My Dad’s brothers are also giants in their own right. The pastor who booms. The engineer who booms. The man who walks with God and … booms. They are men made from the same mold. When I was a teenager, my one uncle took me on vacation with his family – because I needed some time away. The Darling Graduate’s father was the first person I called when I learned Scotland School was closing. He held my infant twins and wiped away my tears. My other uncle drove a truck from New Mexico to the east coast to deliver bunk beds he crafted with my father to our family – so my twins could use them. Shoulders of Giants.


So yesterday my children learned – again – how real men can express love. My uncle dressed as a pirate and he and my father took my children on a treasure hunt. They searched for pirate food and treasures along the path. They were raised on the shoulders of Giants.

Treasures are Hidden



Pirate Food
Aarrrrrrrgh!
Pirate food: Raspberries! 
Pappy picked the food and our pirates ate it so they could find more treasures......
Shoulders of Giants.




Alexander getting a ton of loving ... and loving every moment.  And finally - a tiny Giant herself.  A woman who raised 6 children in a small 3 bedroom / 1 bathroom house.  And loved my Giant of a Pappy.  Grandma....
Thank you... the Giants in my life. For raising us up and continuing this legacy.... On your shoulders...

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