Holidays are the time to cherish family traditionsPublished 9:52am Sunday, December 22, 2013
Column: Preserving the Past, by Pat Mulso
Wow, can you believe Christmas is this week and soon we will begin a new year? Where does time go? So many things have happened at the museum this year, but 2014 will be another year of many changes and new programs as we settle into our new spaces and new schedule.
This past week my mother’s youngest sister, Martha, passed away after a long struggle with lung cancer and then lastly a short battle with inoperable brain tumors, seizures and then a stroke. I was close to all of my mom’s siblings, as we spent a lot of time at each other’s homes. Growing up our vacations were staying a couple of weeks with our cousins, and then they would come and stay with us. I have many fond memories going back to age 4 when I spent my first two-week vacation at Aunt Mart’s. She was a lot like my mom and always had a smile. She helped me as I worked on my family history book by helping me walk cemeteries, go through church records and research at local libraries and historical societies. She also helped with the planning of our big family reunion in the year 2000 when we had more than 1,000 of our relatives gather for our 150th anniversary in America.
We all loved getting Aunt Mart’s letters because it was just like talking with her in person. She didn’t write often, but her letters were usually eight to 10 pages long and caught you up on everything that was happening around her. I will really miss her as I do my mom and all of her siblings. There is only one sibling left, my uncle, Don. He stood up with Arnie and I when we got married 26 years ago this week. His health is not good, and I know it is breaking his heart that he was not able to see his last sister before she passed away. Don’s birthday is the day after mine; he is 20 years older than me and will be 80 on Jan. 4. My mom’s sibling were all so close, their dedication to each other was remarkable in this day and age. May their memories live on for generations in our hearts and minds!
As you spend time with family and friends through the holiday season cherish the simple things like the traditions, the stories, the time together; as we never know when it will be the last time we are together. Make memories for the younger generation to cherish in their future and share with their families when we are gone.
The museum will be hosting a four-hour defensive driving class on from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Jan. 11. The cost is $20 for AARP members and $25 for nonmembers. The cost includes the course materials and an administrative fee. You must register for the class and will need your driver’s license number. To receive the lower cost you will need to provide your AARP membership number. The refresher class is needed every three years after the initial eight-hour class to continue to receive a discount on your auto insurance premium.
The museum will be closed from now until Jan. 7 for the Christmas holiday. We wish everyone a safe and happy holiday season and look forward to serving our community in 2014. Merry Christmas and thank you to all our museum volunteers for a great year — we appreciate all you do.
Our new schedule begins on Jan. 8. We will be open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday, year-round. See you in 2014!
Pat Mulso is the executive director of the Freeborn County Historical Museum in Albert Lea.