S: Hendzel Book of Memories
FC: All Because Two People Fell in Love
1: Time marches on, and change is inevitable. But the one thing that is right and sure in this world is family to remind us where we've been, to watch where we're going and to be with us until the end for comfort and to carry on.
2: Mother’s Days She counted the piggies on little toes Whilst singing her favorite songs. She stroked each tiny baby’s cheek And byoed them all night long. We laid our heads upon her lap As she soothed our troubles away. We would talk about so many things, Then look forward to a brand new day Her arms have been there for comfort When we sometimes lost our way, And each of her children and grandchildren Know what it means to pray. She follows the footsteps of Jesus As she walks in His wonderful light. She loves having family around her, And she thinks of them day and night How generous and kind can one mother be? She taught us what it means to give. As a model of selfless devotion We reflect on how we should live. Her love, her support and her guidance Hold inspiration for us all. As we struggle to raise our own families, We picture her through it all. She continues to hold us in her heart Even as she let us go, Thank you, Mom, for everything, I love you more than you will ever know. Always and forever, Lynn | My Father's Legacy I think of Dad with pride and respect A builder, a fixer, a creator and provider Always busy Strong and persistent A lover of nature Equally awed by a spectacular sunset Or a tiny hummingbird Each time I smell a fragrant lilac Or touch a velvet rose I think of Dad You have helped each of us In so many ways Thanks Dad You are always in my heart With Love Lynn
3: My favorite memories are sleepovers with Bobbi Jo at Grandma and Grandpa's on Shade Tree Blvd. Most vividly is us getting a $20 from Grandma, which she snuck from Grandpa, and her allowing us (at ages 4 and 8) to walk BY OURSELVES to the SureWay by their house to get snacks. We'd do that, but no snacks for us, we'd come back with $20 in candy, specifically I remember Fun Dip. Then, we'd also, BY OURSELVES, walk to Burger Barn. Two small, scrappy kids would walk in, spend tons of money on food that we mostly wasted...breaded mushrooms, ice cream, etc. Then, after our adventures we'd come back for more fun with Grandma. Could be games of Rummy 13, dancing to songs on the trampoline, making forts out of sheets, jumping on her bed till the mattress fell off, gosh I could go on for hours! I also vividly remember Grandpa's retirement party from P&G and I remember him taking a hammer to his metal lunch box; I'm sure it felt so good for him to do! He was not around as much as Grandma, of course, because he was always working to pay for our Burger Barn excursions, among other things! Thanks Grandpa! | Grandma and Grandpa have this special gift of making "family" special and memorable. The big family memories, the big holidays that we celebrate year after year, are SO important and somewhat of a lost art in today's world of small, scattered family dynamics. The memories of all their homes they've lived in are so crystal-clear in my mind...it just shows how it's the little things that matter. For me, it was Shade Tree though that I will never forget. From buttered noodles and that orange bowl that just sat on the counter with butter in it to put on saltines, to the 'cubby hole', to that weird step-stool that Bobbi and I used to climb up on in the basement in order to hang from Uncle Johnny's pull-up, curling bar...the treasure chest in Grandma and Grandpa's room, the giant weeping willow trees in their backyard, to making mudpies under the stairs outside...that iron railing when you first came in that Erin got her head stuck through, Grandma singing "These Boots are Made for Walkin'" in her low, black boots, to her contacts (she was ahead of her time)...never knew what contacts were...we always just knew it as "putting in her eyes" and "teeth" and not to bother her until noon!!! Most of all, Grandma and Grandpa were and still are great grandparents because they let us get away with just about anything. They let their home be a 'magical place' where rules were at a minimum and the most important thing was to have fun. As a parent myself now, the immeasurable patience they had with all their 8 kids, then grandkids, and now great-grand kids is astonishing. That special gift of creating healthy boundaries without ever sacrificing FUN is something I will always strive to achieve as I parent for the rest of my life. Thank you Grandma and Grandpa for being pioneers. Love, Dawn
4: Grandma and Grandpa, Wow, where do I begin? Being a Hendzel has meant so much to me as a child, as a teenager, and now as an adult. I am flooded with happy memories having grown up in this family, and even though I was only five when this occurred, I too, remember Grandpa’s retirement party and watching him smash his metal lunch pail with the sledgehammer. I guess some memories stick with us all. One particular story that I remember with Grandma happened when I was staying with them at their apartment right behind the Piggly Wiggly grocery store. I suppose we were a bit bored and so we decided it was time for us to test our luck with the scratch off lottery tickets. Grandma and I went over to Piggly Wiggly and bought $20 or so in lottery tickets. We marched back to the apartment, scratched them off, won say $9, went back to Piggly Wiggly, got 9 more lottery tickets, and started the whole thing again. I swear, we kept winning and did this routine at least 4 or 5 more times before we ran out of money and winning tickets. I remember the employees at the Piggly Wiggly just started laughing at us by about the third trip because they realized what was going on, but as a young kid, I thought this was the greatest adventure ever, and I will never, EVER forget it. | Beyond specific memories, every year on our birthday, Grandma would make each grandchild feel very special by picking them up and giving them their very own “way day.” This day you got to pick wherever you wanted to eat lunch and you got to go pick out your own toy for a birthday gift, and she basically didn’t tell you no for an answer with anything because, of course, it was your “way day”!!!! She continues this tradition of making each and every one of us feel special by giving us all from the littlest great-grandchild to her eldest child (my mom) a present at Christmas. Obviously her love is gift enough, but she always wanted to give a little extra, whether it be a “perprize” (now my mom says this too!) from the treasure chest or a gift on a birthday. So Grandma, from you, I have learned the values of unconditional love, thoughtfulness, and genuine caring. You have this amazing gift with people in connecting with our lives, remembering details important to us, and making us feel more loved than we could have ever imagined. And one of the greatest gifts of all is that you’ve taught all these things to your children because I was lucky enough to have a mother who happens to be just like you. I watch her with Ethan and Matthew, and all the beautiful attributes I enjoyed in my Grandma, they get in her, and my future children will get to experience too. So thank you for that, Grandma. | Grandpa, you are a remarkable person as well. I don’t know how many times I’ve reflected on your life, your journey, and found myself awestruck with what can really only be described as incredible strength and resilience. You worked hard all of your life, providing for a loving wife and 8 children. You taught all of your children a strong work ethic and an appreciation for all that they have. In the face of adversity, when the doctors told you that you couldn’t, you did. You are the most creative person that I know. I remember not long after your stroke being at your house and you showed my mom and dad and me all of the makeshift exercise tools that you had handcrafted yourself to help with your physical therapy. Your will, your drive, and your positive spirit are inspiring. If I live my life with the same amount of determination as you, then maybe I too, can live to be a “100” like you always say. I love you and am SO proud of you. Thank you both for loving me so dearly and for making my 28 years such memorable ones with you. I treasure all the memories that you have given me and all the memories that are sure to come! Love, Erin
6: ll | The thing I remember the most about grandma and grandpas house was always playing donkey kong and super mario brothers on grandmas super nintendo with all the cousins. I also remember grandpa teaching me how to build a bird house out in the garage then we would go out to the garden and pick beans and grandma would cook them up for supper. And buttered noodles were the best ! Maybe with a little ham chopped up n em : ) -Cody
7: I remember the time when I was about 12 years old and ma and grandma were dancing to polka music on a saturday night. they asked me to go buy more beer, so grandma gave me money to go get a six pack at the town line. Then I got home and we all got drunk to alvin staginski. - Mike
8: Mom and Dad.........Thanks for all "the Gifts" The older I get the more my idea of what a gift really is has changed very much. When I was younger (which by the way was only a few short years ago) I thought of a gift as being something in a package wrapped up. I realize now most of my precious and priceless gifts have come in the form of cherished memories and time spent with the ones you love. Some more outstanding then others but all that will be with you for a lifetime and always fun to share.(All in due time of course. Had to wait until I was about 25 before we could share the story with mom and dad about the fly sticker incident that almost burnt down our house!!) With this said I feel I have been blessed with many "gifts" through out my life so far. First and far most having parents that make each and every one of their 8 kids & significant others, 13 grandchildren and their significant others, 7 great grandchildren(and counting) and whoever else gets prayed into the family feel special for just being them. I remember mom proudly sharing the story of how the nuns gave a rhinestone brooch to all the mothers who had a baby on Mother's Day. Thanks mom, I treasure that pin to this day. As the story has been told I was named after a little girl in one of Lynn's storybooks and I don't know when it was but at some point they realized the name Karen didn't have an "ie or y" at the end of it and just started calling me Carrie. I am guessing it came about when Mom was calling for one kid but seemed to call every other kid's name first before getting to the one she wanted. i.e. Mikey, Jeffy, Jimmy, Janie, Johnny, Mary, Lynn(Huh, no ie or y) Carrie supper is ready and hurry up cuz it's gonna get cold!! Have to admit I did it and I only had three kids. | Being pretty little I don't remember much of "The Little Green House" but love to hear stories of The Nick's, Williquette's and Schemell's. There are countless memories of our house in Pulaski though. I believe we moved there with a family of 6 and moved about seven years later with four more also referred to as "The Little Kids". When I look back, I remember so much about growing up there and mom always letting her "kids be kids" just by doing the simple things like making tents in the living room and over the clothes lines, making mud pies in the sandbox (with my best friend, my little brother Jeff),riding bikes to the big tree, swimming in our built in pool with the non slip picky bottom, floating down the creek, and who could forget the cool fort we built in grandpa's corn field and oh ya, almost burning the house down by lighting the flies on the fly sticker. Just playing with your brothers and sisters. Nothing more than amazing thinking they packed up 8 kids and went camping, rented cabins,(Mom saying "shh" a hundred times over because we were too loud and would get kicked out) and none of us will ever forget our trips to South Dakota or Canada. Mom singing "Ravishing Ruby" and her other country favorites all the way there and dad behind the wheel of either the station wagon or our pickup truck/RV scouting out good trout streams. 8 kids complaining that they were staaarving and dad somehow finding a little country store and buying a loaf of bread, a pound of meat and all the mustard you could eat. "Starvation Road" remember it like yesterday. Priceless!!!
9: Mom, you will always be remembered for how much effort you put into making Christmas so special for all of us. Countless hours of wrapping to make sure every kid had enough to open.(even though we always managed to find them and snooped) My Easy Bake Oven:) All those little shoes polished, making Christmas cookies each year even though you must have been simply exhausted. Getting us to both sides of the family so we could see all of our cousins and plan who would stay at whose house over the holiday. The chiffon cake with butterscotch frosting and pecans you made for our birthdays was my favorite (even if we had to eat it on the lawn so there would be no crumbs)and of course not ever having to even pick up your dirty underwear cuz it was your "Way Day" Dad I will never forget how many long hours you had to put in and how much sleep you had to give up (and when you did finally get to catch a couple of winks you had kids climbing all over you) Working at the mill and then coming home and working on all the building and remodeling jobs to provide us with a beautiful house to live in. How could I forget when we would pack in the station wagon and go to McDonald's and get 10 hamburgers, 10 fries, 5 shakes and 4 baby cups. All of our trips up north and you stopping for cheese popcorn, chili or ice cream as a reward for us helping. | Our homes on Ash St. and Shade Tree were filled with a steady stream of friends that you always let us have over or at least after you told them to wait until dad goes to work on the night shift. Remembering that most of them referred to you as "ma". I had finally come to realize what the term of "trying to make ends meet" meant when I was feeding all my kids friends. We have been through a lot as a family. There have been happy times and sad times, bumpy roads and smooth sailing and through them all we always knew we had each other. After all these years and a couple of more generations created we still enjoy spending time together and it is quite evident that your grandchildren and great grandchildren feel the same. Mom and Dad you have both been there every step of the way to support and be there for me and my family and I know they have special memories of their own. It seems that I have gone on and on but I have so, so many more memories that I could probably write a book or a top rated reality show. The ones that stand out the most in my life are the ones that we are all together as a "Family". Christmases, times spent up north, vacations we have taken to praying together in that chapel at the hospital after dad's stroke. These are priceless memories that cannot be bought. With the "I gotta" attitude of Dad and "The Proud Mother of Eight" attitude of mom I feel I have been blessed with the best "gifts" I could ever ask for. Love You Forever, Karen Kay A.K.A. Carrie :)
10: Ed and Pat (Ma) have always been great to me and my family. What I remember most about Ma is big dinners (Christmas and Easter), she would always be so proud and happy because Ralph and me would be the last ones at the table. Ed was great at teaching me hunting and remodeling. It was nice when he included me along with his boys to hunt with them at Green Valley. Also helping me build the addition above the garage at my home. And, of course, babysitting my kids all those years. I love you both, Rod
11: I have many lasting memories of Grandma and Grandpa throughout the years starting when they lived right down the street in Sobieski and I would get dropped off to be babysat by Grandma. I would arrive in the morning and want to play around with Grandma but I couldn’t ask her too early in the morning (or afternoon) because I would get the same response every time. “Just wait till Grandma puts her teeth in and finishes up this pot of coffee.” While I waited for the coffee pot to dwindle down like an hourglass I would venture over to the toy box to start an epic battle of Ninja Turtles Vs Power Rangers or wheel Matchbox cars through the house as if it were one giant racetrack. Later I would ask Grandma for a snack and she would set me up with apples cut up in a dish while I sat on a blanket in front of the TV and if I was lucky I might’ve even gotten a cookie which I would be told to eat over the waste basket to make sure not a single crumb would drop onto the floor. After spending hours playing with Grandma and hearing her signature songs such as “Little Ducky Dottle” and “Mr. Johnny Rebeck” I would then anticipate the time when Grandpa would get back home so I could go out in the garage and help him with his projects such as building birdhouses or whatever else he may have been working on at the time. In the later years of their Sobieski house the neighbor boy, Jimmy would come over whenever I was at Grandma and Grandpa’s and we would play for hours in the yard or go inside and battle through levels of Donkey Kong or Mega-Man on the Nintendo and Grandma and Grandpa would almost forget we were there until we got into some kind of trouble and Grandma would have to come and say “You two better cut it out or I’ll tell Grandpa you're being sassy” and this would usually get us to straighten up. I created many childhood memories with Grandma and Grandpa and many have stuck with me to this day which I will remember for the rest of my life. The family values that Grandma and Grandpa passed down through their eight children have clearly passed on through all of us grandchildren and onto the great-grandchildren which created a family that is very large, yet still close and loving. All the Hendzel children, my Aunts and Uncles, have stayed very close through the years, and even their spouses have been welcomed into the family and treated by Grandma and Grandpa as if they were their own children. This tight-knit group of siblings brought on a generation of grandchildren and now great-grandchildren that created one huge family. Although the size continues to grow with marriages and new great-grandchildren coming into the family every couple years, we still manage to stay very close. This is apparent when Uncle Jeff and Aunt Kathryn open their doors to the entire Hendzel clan for one giant Christmas party each year and everyone has a great time spending the holidays with all their family. This really shows how great of a family we are and it’s all made possible by the love of Grandma and Grandpa. Alex
12: My favorite memories of Grandma and Grandpa occurred at the house on South Chase. I loved that they lived so close and I could ride my bike there in the summer. I remember Grandma teaching us how to eat cookies without dropping any crumbs and getting to pick treats out of the cow cookie jar (usually caramel hard candy or vanilla cookies). Even the neighbor kids knew that Grandma Pat had the best treats in that cookie jar and would make up reasons to come over just to get some. I remember making “eye puzzles” with Grandma and then telling stories about them when they were complete. “Now you better watch out little bird because if you fall out of that tree that big snake is going to eat you up”. Grandma was always very careful to make sure we didn’t lose any pieces and because of her diligence, I still have those puzzles and can’t wait until Noah gets a little older so we can make them together and tell the same stories. I also loved playing rummy with Grandma and would laugh at all her funny sayings; “don’t deal the spots off”, “cookin’ with Krisco”, and “I got a goose from every town”. And of course who could forget the birthdays! Grandma and Grandpa made sure that every kid’s birthday was the best day of the year. It was our “way day” and we did not have to do anything we didn’t want to do. I remember grandma telling me that I didn’t even have to pick up my dirty underwear off the floor. I remember hopping into the front seat of Grandpa’s old truck and heading off to Big Lots where Grandma would hand me $10 and I could pick out any toy I wanted. This was such a treat and I looked forward to it every year. I also remember playing in the big field behind the house and watching Grandpa tend to his amazing gardens. Grandpa’s hard working attitude never ceased to amaze me. Always up with the sun and busy with something. To this day I cannot imagine two people who are more right for each other. Thank you Grams and Gramps for not only creating such wonderful memories for me, but for helping to shape me into the person I am. Love you Grams and Gramps! Love Ashley
14: Dear Grams and Gramps, As I become more of a “real adult” every day, I realize what an absolute gift it is to be born into a family based on love and respect and to have a Grandma and Grandpa then a Mom and Dad who always made me feel special. The sky is the limit for a girl born into a family like that. And it all started with you. There is no greater accomplishment than being the reason why kids, grandkids and greatgrandkids walk through this world knowing that their family believes in them, accepts them for exactly who they are, and has taught them that nothing comes without hard work, a bit of silliness and love. And you both lead by example, Gramps getting up motivated every day to stay busy, to have purpose, and to put the grandkids to work shoveling mounds of snow if it needs to be done. And Grams, there is nobody that asks me what I think and believe in the deepest part of who I am more than you. And no answer I’ve given has ever surprised you, you learn from me and I learn from you. You are one the very greatest blessings in my life, and not just because you’re my Grandma but because of who you are. So thank you, Grams and Gramps, not only for taking on all the work required to raise 8 kids, who had kids who are now having kids of their own. But for doing so with love while also teaching us how to be good people. Everybody is not so lucky to be born into a family that is as special as ours. The traditions - the “way days”, the millions of presents on Christmas morning, the goofy songs, the “byo byo” lullaby will stay with us and our kids and our kids’ kids and I’m sure will continue on for generations after. All because two young people saw something in each other so many years ago and have reaffirmed their love to one another through the good and through the frustrating times. All because two people fell, and have stayed, in love. Love you both so, so much. Amy
15: Grandma and Grandpa allowed me to feel welcome into their family from my first memory I have with them. My first Hendzel Christmas felt awkward in the beginning, sometimes I still can’t get everyone’s name right. But Grandma’s poker game made me feel right at home, it helped me feel at ease and that I could be more of myself in the family. Christmas shopping is a little more enjoyable because I know how much Grandma appreciates the snowman trinkets I give about every year, or at least I’ve led myself to believe that. I also know that I can give Grandpa some cashews and he’s ecstatic. What really intrigues me about Grandma is her love for biographies. I can’t not buy her a new biography any time I visit Goodwill. Her curiosity to understand other peoples' stories speaks wonders about her personality. She always asks me how I’m doing and how my life is going. She’s genuinely interested and always listens well in conversations. Grandpa is pretty easy going. When Amy and Grandma are chattering away, we can always have some good small talk. I haven’t been around very long, but from what I’ve seen Grandma and Grandpa have built a strong family, who all care about each other. I'm happy to be married in. -Dan
16: The story I’m told is that my life started with mom telling the nurses in the hospital, “hurry this baby is coming” (and he is hanging on to the toilet bowl)! I guess that I must have had the attitude “let’s get this thing done”. That characteristic has carried with me for the rest of my life. Mom was very proud that her baby was picked over all the others to demonstrate bath time. She said it was because I was the cutest however, I think it may be because I was the fattest and the nurses felt sorry for me! Girl-boy-girl-boy, I was number four, the last of the “Big Kids”. Fast forward to the Pulaski house out by the farm. This is where my memories start. Our 1st TV was black & white with three stations. We had a party line telephone and I think sometimes if we were very careful we could pick up the receiver and listen in on some old bitties' conversations. The Comet station wagon, the juke box in the basement (it gave you shocks) and we roller skated to the Yellow Roads of Texas. I recall that sometimes a bunch of us kids would all shower together under the shower head in the basement. If we did use the tub it was always two at a time. I guess it was more efficient that way but mom always gave us time to play. Bella was our dog, a blond golden german shepard named after one we met on one of our many family vacations, that one happened to be to Botswana Bay Ontario, CA. I also had a pet pigeon that I rescued from the silo with a bad wing. It crapped all over dad’s garage roof so it was so named “Stoolie”. Sunday drives often led us to a place called “starvation road”. Never fear dad always managed to find some little general store to get us something to eat. The usual fare was “a loaf of bread, a pound of meat and all the mustard you can eat”. Then there were trips to Michigan for the contraband Blue Bonnet Margarine. | Sometimes mom would feed us all out of a big pot of noodles from that came her most famous term that has gone through generations “baby bird”! Actually her reason for this was only two dishes to clean that night. A pot and a spoon. Diapers and dishes for eight, that was my mom’s life for a VERY long time. I recall dad having to come up with quarters and stack them on the kitchen counter for our school lunch money. We never went to bed hungry! Dad taught us to work. The boys where building cottages and remolding fixer uppers at a young age. Mom believed there was boys' work and girls' work. If the boys got too buggie mom would say to dad “get these boys out of here”. Sometimes that meant we got to go trout fishing or hunting and other times that meant cleaning the garage. Dad taught the boys to hunt and fish and mom trained the girls in the fine art of shopping. As we grew to be teens the population grew in the Hendzel house because mom and dad always welcomed in all of our friends. Mom and dad supported Kathryn and I when we shocked them with the news that we were going to give them their first grandchild “Chad” at a very young age. Somehow they always knew just the right time to stop over with a few bags of groceries to help us out. Dad & Mom, your love and support throughout our lives has helped us all at one time or another. You made us what we are today and we love you for that. Thanks mom and dad! Love Your Son, Jeffrey Jay
17: I was 14 when I came into the family, it was so refreshing from the home I came from. Mom treated me like one of her kids. When she found out that I was going to have a baby she was very supportive. When my Mom had my sister she took care of Chad for two weeks, which my Mom wouldn't let me see Chad so I had to sneak to the house to see him, was totally devastated when Chad called her Mom, but I realized that she was taking good care of him. Later after we were married for awhile Dad would come to our house with a bag of food and it was always a time when we needed it, could never figure out how he knew. Every one of Chad and Bobbi's friends loved Grams, they would call her Funny Grandma. They loved all the songs she sang, her stories, and how silly she was. I have never seen anyone so good with children. Dad and Mom, thank you so much for accepting me in the family and for all you've done for Jeff and I throughout the years. Love you always! Kathryn
18: CHAD’S GRANDPA AND GRANDMA MEMORIES There are so many memories it is hard to summarize in a short letter. Of course with me being “OUR LITTLE CHAD” as named by Grandma there are memories with the whole family. By the way that name stuck, at 36 I am still LITTLE CHAD. Being the first grandchild I think I can say that I was the most spoiled of all, and not just prizes from the treasure chest but being able to live at the Shade Tree Castle. Even after Bobbi and Dawn came along to keep me company I was able to work Grandma’s soft side, being the only boy, of course I needed more “perprizes”. There were so many mornings that I woke up to have Pancake Eggs with Grandpa and to rummage around in his tin lunch pail until I found a small pack of Doublemint Gum. There weren’t too many projects with Grandpa that I didn’t get involved with, whether I was helping or hindering, it didn’t matter. He taught me things that you can’t learn from a book or class. I feel blessed to have the Hendzel Eye for level, straight, square, round, flat, or whatever else brings you as close to perfect as possible. Now after saying that I think it may be a curse at times, this is why they call me HALKEYE HENDZEL at work. As hard as the job was one thing I learned is at the end of the day you need to stand back and look at the masterpiece that you created whether it was a sidewalk, garage, garden, or birdhouse... | As Jimmy and Johnny got older, I became the Shade Tree gardener and lawn keeper and as you all know the Boss is a perfectionist. There was no weed or piece of grass that got by Grandpa, so quickly I learned that you might as well do it 110% the first time, you can now ask Dylan how this works. There was never a dull moment when you slept over whether I was with Grandma or Grandpa. Grandma can make up games or projects at the drop of a dime, somehow I think that all of us grandchildren think that cutting out Efferdent packs and putting them in a jar was work done for NASA. No matter how big or what kind of mess we made it never bothered her as long as we were having fun, I think there may still be some food hidden the KUBBY HOLE. It seemed that we could do no wrong when with Grandma although I often wonder if I was the only one chased around the pool table with a fly swatter. There are so many memories with all the aunts and uncles I wouldn’t know where to start, although I think some of them may have scarred me for life. Somehow I was talked into dressing up like a woman with high heals, hat, dress, make up, and standing in the middle of Shade Tree with a fishing pole waving at cars going by. Lenny must have thought we were nutz! There are so many stories to tell I don’t think we will ever run out, holidays, sleepovers, fishing, hunting, camping, White Potato Lake Trailer, Lilly Lake Cabin, construction projects. Although all of our stories and lives may be different there are two things in common with all of us that will never change that is GRANDMA and GRANDPA.
19: When I met Chad's family 18 yrs ago, I had no idea what I was getting myself into! I came from a very small, relatively quiet family. Little did I know, how much I was missing out on. The Hendzel family gatherings have become some of my favorite memories. As loud and chaotic as some of them are, there is still such a intimacy and closeness about them that is truly amazing. And that is all because of two wonderful people. Grandma reminds me so much of my grandmother, both with a larger than life personality. She is energetic, animated, creative, loving, supportive, tells-you-like-it-is honest, and infectiously funny. You just feel naturally drawn to her. She is the glue that holds the whole family together. Grandpa is caring, hard-working and dedicated in everything he does. Through Jeff and Chad, I see what a great man Grandpa is. He has instilled such a great sense of family, pride and work ethic in both of them. For that, I am most grateful. I feel truly blessed to be a part of this family! Toni
20: There are so many memories and things that I want to say that I don’t even know where to start. Well here goes..here’s to you Grandma and Grandpa because of you I am here today taking pride in what you taught your children and your grandchildren. The pride of family. Oh gosh, as a lil girl there are so many precious memories I have, those that were created before I was born with the original 8 kids..which I have heard so many times that I feel like they are memories of my own. Then there are memories of my own, both I cherish to this day. I guess my memories right now take me back to maybe around the age of 5 or 6. I remember ALWAYS being so welcome in the Shade Tree house, I can’t recall a time that Chad, Dawn or I (the first of the grands) would BEG grandma to stay overnight at any holiday or even just when stopping to visit. When I say BEG, I say it very loosely because there was more begging to our parents than Grams because the answer was always yes. On these overnighters there were a variety of events that took place..hmmmm..there were many occasion that I was pretty much in charge of Dawn in the a.m. when we woke up as we all know Grams isn’t much for early rising. I would make us breakfast (which usually consisted of buttered crackers and canned mushrooms and black olives) and we would play restaurant by the counter in the kitchen. There were the days of the cubby hole, jumping on Grams' bed (she would knock on the door and ask us what we were up to and you know darn well she knew but was just checking in to make sure we didn’t get hurt) Rummy 13, Jackpots, Chad & I going on adventures in the back of Grandpa's truck, Grams and I using some minor cuss words in the boat at the cabin, jumping on the trampoline to “These Boots Are Made For Walkin”, the MOUNDS of presents at Christmas, the walks with 20 bucks to Sure Way in which Dawn and I seemed to always spend that money on candy alone, (except we did always manage to find a lil present to bring Grams for being so thoughtful), the Burger Barn adventures, checking grandpas lunchbox when he got home from work for that "snowball" but mostly the independence, fun and laughter is what I remember the most. There were so many others that I just can’t all fit in but let’s get to the important stuff.
21: There are things that I now look at in myself and say..I inherited that from “them”. One of the very most important things that I have gotten from my grandmother is the special way I have with children. To be able to enforce good habits and behaviors in a way that is respectful and still be able to have fun. This natural way that kids kind of, I want to say, “cling to me”. Grandma always told me growing up packing those lunches for Grandpa, one of the keys to a marriage is packing in this lunch a lil something that always shows that you care. Also the many numerous things I do with my children, baby bird, byo byo, the crazy songs that I have learned that I now sing to my children with one of my favorites being Mr. Johnny Rebeck (sassy song which is probably why it was my favorite). From Grandpa I recall him telling me stories that maybe to anyone would be just a story but from him, these stories were like gold, sitting and listening to them is something I can never forget. Oh and one last thing, maybe that is where I got a lil of my Hendzel stubbornness from, which makes me a part of who I am today! One of the things I hear from my father while speaking of my children which I recall hearing come out of Grams when my parents asked how I behaved is “They were perfect angels”, is one of the sayings that I cherish every time I hear it. Well that and I will rip your arms off and beat you with the bloody stumps, haha! I want to say thank you to the both of you for what you have instilled in all of us. Being a “Hendzel” is one of the proudest statements that I can make about who I have become. I will try to take some of the precious things that I have gotten from the both of you and make sure that my children and grandchildren are lucky enough to be blessed with such wonderful memories and qualities that you have given to your entire family. | Love you more than words, Your eldest Granddaughter Bobbi Jo P.S. I'm not Bobber Jobbers but where is the shampoo???
22: My Mother and Father, What it must have been like in August of 1962 specifically August 16th 1962 - my mom was 9 months pregnant with twins on her 26th birthday with 4 other children. We all wanted your attention even the twins that would be coming in 2 days. From my understanding I was twin A as I didn't have a name quite yet. I came into this world with a forever friend twin B. Soon we would have names....soon. I was crowned the name Jane Patricia Hendzel, my roommate was James Edwin Hendzel. 6 kids at 26 soon to be 8 at 29. My dad worked at Charmin, as did many of my classmates' fathers in grade school, well it's real name is Proctor and Gamble, but to me it will always be Charmin. Dad was a hard worker, working shift work at the mill for years. As a kid, I remember Dad working the shift 3:00 PM-11:00 PM and we, the little kids, (because as we know there were two distinct groups, the little kids and the big kids), would wait to see what Dad had in that silver lunch box of his. He usually had a Twinkie, or a Snow Globe, first come first serve in those days. The morning shift brought...shhhhsshh...day old bakery, who cared back then! As a young kid I remember taking trips in the green wood paneled station wagon, (we looked like sardines all smashed in that green tin cup) As well there was Dad's truck with a cap on the back. Dad made these benches the kids could sit on. A little padding some loop de loop caret and whala transportation for 7. Johnny, number 8, usually got to sit in front with Mom, what a luxury that was, hey it got us to our destination. I remember the South Dakota trip to the Bad Lands. Bologna sandwiches, a bag of Lays, and a carton of milk, and we were set. Mom would always comment, "So are we going up North to see the treeessss the trrreeesss", to Dad, really Dad was trying to slip in some fly fishing while we sat in the car. I'm sure back then a 4 Seasons Hotel would have been just fine, for Mom.
23: Then there was Christmas, as I say this with an angelic homage, Christmas was wonderful, as a 5 year old I would wake up at 6 am sometimes earlier, and the presents the mountains and mountains of presents, Santa sure knew where the Hendzel kids lived. Thanks MOM! We did things as a family, our big thing was construction or should I say "the major overhaul of junky old cottages". We would bring back life to these places on the lake. But more importantly, I learned how to swim, and catch a fish, and the first time I was thrown off the dock I survived. Even if I wouldn't have our trustworthy Super Dog "Bella" would have saved the day, by dragging me back to shore. I'm sure dad was busy swinging a hammer and Mom was making yes again the dreaded bologna sandwiches. I guess I have a bit of dad's artistic ability in me and when I got older I would ask Dad to make me a frame for a piece of art, a few days later I would pick up a perfectly mitered frame for my Picaso. From Mom I got the gift of communication, she has this natural way of the gift of gab. I learned in sales, people like to work with you when your personable, so thanks again Mom. | We had so many good times as kids, and you know I never once felt deprived, who knew a paper mill worker with a family of 10 could get by on so little. How did they do it, there was TV (all six channels), no remote, no computers, no video games, no cell phones. Mom would put our snow suites on and we would go make a snow fort, or on a sunny day the sprinkler was our pool. How did we survive! I'm 49 now, wow how time has passed, there are way too many memories to mention, some good, some bad, but as a family the good ones far, far, outshine the bad. In memory of our long lost pets, Puppy, Bella, Hermmy and Shermy (our Gerbals), and of course Tweety Bird! Oh yeah, my favorite poem from Mom has to be the Abe Lincoln poem, all the teachers thought mom was quite the poet with that one, a true Shakespeare. Love Jaynie
24: "The Wonder Years" Growing up in the Hendzel household was always an adventure leaving me with lifelong and lasting memories. I always tell Rachel and Vince that back then it was like the TV show The Wonder Years because life seemed so carefree and simple compared to the hustle and bustle of everyday life in today’s world. Mom and Dad Hendzel did such a great job in creating those memories I have of days gone by. Some of the memories are actually not memories at all for me but more like legendary stories such as the infamous one of where the family made the long journey to Green Bay to grocery shop at the Sure Way store on Military Ave. As the legend goes after shopping for groceries, we stopped off at the bakery nearby. I was just a little tyke and got to sit in the shopping cart seat. To keep us in control, so she could shop, Mom would get us a free cookie. All of those kids must have been hard to keep track of, because half way down Highway 29 somebody in the car finally realized I wasn't in the car. After backtracking their way back to the bakery (must have been Dad's years of experience tracking deer) the case of the missing kid was solved. Here was little Jimmy still in the cart munching down on that free cookie. Thank God for free cookies and shopping carts or I still might be missing in action! We did make it back to our rural Pulaski house, the one in which me and little Janie were caught red handed buttering the cellar walls. I was too young to remember those legendary times, but one I'll never forget was standing in line to get the spoonful of cod liver oil Mom swore was going to make us grow like weeds. Little did she know it would have a reverse affect on me and slow down the growing process. Thanks Mom but it was the thought that counted. | One other story forever etched in my brain is the one where Mom and all 8 kids were headed to the Lee Lake cottage to assist Dad, or maybe more like get in his hair. Well on the way, not far from Johnny's current house, cruising in the flashy looking cream colored comet station wagon in the summer heat old Bessy decided to run out of gas. Now what do we do Mom must have thought, but as things always were there was a solution for everything. The oldest boy, Mikey was nominated to walk down the highway with Mom going door to door looking for gas, leaving the rest of the tribe stranded in the car. While on their trek to save the day somehow little Janie wound up with a fish hook in her eye, or darn close to it, most likely from Jeffy's quest to catch the big one. In what seemed like forever we found gas and made our way to the cottage. It was those trips back home I was most fond of. After pestering Dad long enough we were all treated to bags of cheese popcorn from the tavern along the way. As the family grew and the living space shrunk, Mom and Dad decided we needed a bigger house. That was when we moved to the house on 861 Ash Street in Duck Creek (aka Howard).The house may have been bigger but who got stuck with the smallest room in the house? All four "little kids" of course! This became such a bonding experience with Janie, Mary and Johnny. It wasn't long after moving there that Dad packed up the family and headed west for a trip to South Dakota and that long trip down starvation road. Once we made it to Deadwood I felt so proud to be the chosen one to get to go to the Wild Bill Hickok play with Dad. That trip has too many memories to mention.
25: The highlight of winters on Ash Street was when Dad bought us that Homelite snowmobile. What a clunker but hey we had to keep up with the Pauls' and Engebose's. Mom even drove us to LeMeres hills on it. Summers were usually never boring there but on the rare occasion of asking Mom "what’s there to do" she would give us that line "spit in a shoe, pass it on and give it to you" That one kind of went with Dads famous "Inch me and pinch me went down to the creek, inch me fell in and who was left? Pinch Me" Ouch that still hurts! Tons of memories were made at that house. Once again the kids were growing like weeds and the house was shrinking so time for another move, this time not quite as far. After one of those Sunday drives and going to open house after open house we got the word we were on the move again. Wow what a big house this time and finally 2 kids to every room. Five bedrooms and more elbow room. I'll never forget that first night there, especially that pool table Dad bought for the family room. It became the center piece for entertaining friends. Now it was time to pay for all this stuff so Dad took on the challenge of buying junky old houses and remodeling them to like new condition. It became family projects with everyone pitching in. Even though I wanted to go mess around with my friends some of the times and didn't want to go help it taught me that if I wanted things I had to work for them. Thanks Dad for the good work ethic! | On the not so busy days Dad took me fishing now and then, one on one time with him. Who could ask for more. As for Mom in them days when Dad was on 2 till 10 at the mill and the kids were driving her crazy what better way to spend the day than toy shopping. Tons of junk and all on the "charge plate"!! World War 3 started when he got home and those darn charge plates were cut up within minutes (till Mom got new ones). If charging toys wasn't an option there was always a drive to Austins, all the way to Green Bay just to buy ground up bologna. But mmm was it good. It was all good and a great place to grow up, but once again time to move. By this time most of the kids were out of the house including me. About the time I met Lorri we had to make a visit to that Shade Tree house for the smashing of the lunchbox party. This was her first real taste of life in the Hendzel household. That lunchbox was no longer needed and Dad's days in the mill were finally over, time to relax! Fast forward to today and still taking a Sunday drive now and then with Mom and Dad is always special for me, Lorri, Rachel and Vince. It’s always about reminiscing and cruising through Howard and Suamico in Dad's caddy. Every now and then a trip to the casino to "spin a few" is in the works too. I hope we hit it big one day!! If not, growing up in the Hendzel household was hitting it big enough. Thanks Mom and Dad for making life so good. Love, Jim
26: The year I met Jim was 1988, which is the year Eddie retired from P&G. I remember being at the Shade Tree house for the retirement party and feeling like, okay, who are ALL these people? I can still see Eddie hitting the alarm clock with the sledge hammer! We were in the back yard and it was nice out. I also remember being inside the house and looking at Johnny's painting in the living room and the grandfather clock in the dining room and I kept thinking about how many people were in Jim's family and that it must be nice to have get togethers with so many people. Jim and Johnny were roommates living on Roland Lane and I was there when Eddie called Jim to ask him out for lunch for his birthday and that struck me as such a neat thing, a dad calling his son, something I as a daughter, had never done with her dad, a simple thing, going out to lunch, but I have never forgotten that to this day. That was the first of the birthday lunches that I would witness, as this was a special treat Eddie and Pat had that they did with their kids. Jim & I had a Christmas party while at Roland Lane and we invited my Mom and Pat & Eddie. This was the first time that they would be meeting. I remember Pat being so friendly to my Mom, as she didn't know anyone but me. Pat made my Mom feel right at home and I remember hearing Pat tell my Mom, I sure hope you like our Jimmy as much as we like your Lorri. My Mom later commented on how much she liked Pat. | Jim & I took a trip with Pat & Eddie to Sault St. Marie, MI on the 4th of July, where we watched the fireworks. We went on to Sault St. Marie, Canada where we boarded the Agawa Canyon Train. Pat & Eddie still talk about how the train got reversed after we got off at the canyon and made the return trip. We then headed further East into Ontario, where we stayed at a motel in a little town that had a lake behind it. As we were paying for breakfast the next morning, I glanced at the morning newspaper and it had a headline of an unsolved murder in the area! I asked the lady checking us out about it and she turn as white as a ghost. We later found out that the story was on the tv show "Unsolved Mysteries". We went to a fair that Eddie loved, as it had all kinds of antique farm machinery and tools and old Sears Robuck catalogs. We then went onto St. Ignace where I found out that Pat had to "put her eyes in" and LOVED coffee! We also went to Mackinaw Island, it was a really fun trip. Pat & Eddie got to know my Mom thru the births of Rachel and Vince and the birthday parties we had. So when my Mom got breast cancer, there was never a time that Eddie didn't ask me how she was doing when we would stop over to visit them.
27: Some people can't stand their mother and father in laws, but I always tell people I got lucky, as I love them both. They accepted me into their family (Pat prayed me in!), Pat never missed a chance to tell me how becoming it was every time she caught me holding a baby (she wanted grand babies!), and once we had our babies, she loved them as much as all her others. I wish I could turn the clock back, as time has flown since the retirement party on Shade Tree, but I know Pat & Eddie have enjoyed the ride and I am glad for the memories made along the way. Lorri Hendzel | Both he and Pat wanted to hear all about her. Pat always said the kindest things about my Mom, to me and to my Mom personally, Pat was always full of compliments, she always said things to my family to make them feel good about themselves. It helped me after my Mom died, that Pat would always talk openly about her, that she didn't avoid the conversation. I have always loved going over to visit with Pat & Eddie, we always say that we can't stay long, but end up talking for hours. I love hearing stories from Eddie of when he was a kid on the farm, about his parents, about hitchiking to Kansas, and being in the service and when Pat talks, and Eddie is listening, I think about the years they had with all the kids and him working, and I know that they would do it all over again in a heart beat, that having all those kids is what they are most proud of, not the houses or the cars, but their kids. I also love it when Rachel and Vince get to talk and listen to Pat & Eddie. I cherish Pat talking to Rachel about boys, and when she was a girl Rachel's age, that is so precious, and to hear them laugh about silly things, and also to have Pat talk from experience to Rachel and Vince on important matters, those are all things they will always remember. Eddie is always the host, making sure that everyone has something to drink and making sure that we’re not hungry. | We don’t remember days; we remember moments.
28: Let me just start off to say, there's never a dull moment in the Hendzel family. When Christmas time rolls around again every year, and we're all back together, there isn't a closer, and more loving family. Grandma & Grandpa, you did a great job. There's so many things I remember with both of you, mostly from when you lived on Weisner Street. The most memorable thing has to be when we would play jackpot dice. Me, Nicole, & Kaitlyn would come and sleepover at your house, and every time you INSISTED that we played jackpot dice. And of course we did it, cause we knew we'd get to pick out of the treasure chest! Grandma, you would get some coins from Grandpa, we would sit on the living room floor in a circle, with all of the coins in the middle, and cross our fingers that we would roll a jackpot. You always found tricks to get the upper hand on the game so you could show us how it's done. You would turn on the polka music, and dance with Grandpa in the kitchen, and try to teach me, Nicole, and Kaitlyn how to do it. We would do it over and over again until you made sure our polka techniques were PERFECT. I also remember when you would make those hand fortunes for us girls, to determine who we would marry, hate, love, kiss, etc. I remember how to make those to this day, and I don't think I will ever forget. I'll never forget getting woke up in the morning by the little bird you used to have. That thing would chirp and chirp, but you loved it. I'll also never forget when me and Nicole hid in Grandpa's shed when neither of you were home, and needless to say, he wasn't too happy when he found us. Fast forwarding a few years to when I was a teenager, and you moved into your new house, whenever I came over, we would never run out of things to talk about. | My favorite memory of Grandma and Grandpa was when I was over at their house on Weisner street. I went over there because Grandpa was going to help me make a pinewood derby car for boy scouts. He did a perfect job. When we were done cutting it we painted the whole thing orange. Just before I left I remember losing one of my first teeth ever and Grandma gave me a dollar. It was a very memorable event for me and I thought it was really special when I was little. I love you Grandma and Grandpa. Love Vince
29: Whether it was about when you were a kid, boys, school, your newest favorite show (which was usually the bachelor), boys, or more boys, we could talk and talk for hours on end. I'm not sure there was a time I went to visit that you forgot to remind me that I needed to color your hair and do your makeup, and do something fun with it. I think I recall you asking for some purple highlights...or maybe it was blonde. In the midst of talking, you would point out how much you were like me when you were little. 5 feet tall, and 100 pounds. And you'd never forget to mention how much all of the boys loved you. When we would talk about a future career for me, you'd hint at the fact that I should become a plastic surgeon so I can doll you up, and you told me I needed to fix your turkey chin. I would sit there and laugh, and say, "sure Grandma, I'll become a plastic surgeon just for you!" Then there was the year we started to make Easter together a tradition. We would pick you up, and take you out to eat wherever you wanted, then when we were stuffed to the point where we were sure we couldn't eat anymore, we would head over to Uncle Mike's and the second we walked in the door, you would ask him to put on the Elvis concert DVDs so you could dance. You and the rest of the family could dance to those DVDs for hours, I swear. And the latest memory we've had together is going up north with the whole family. Me and Nicole were watching a movie, and you were dancing around the living room, and playing rummy with Lindsay. We would laugh at how much of a competition it was with you and Lindsay when playing rummy. You two would go at it for hours because both of you wanted to be the winner. There was also when I was learning to water ski, and you were cheering me on from the dock. There's so many great memories I've had with both you and Grandpa, and I can't wait to experience so many more with both of you. I love you! –Rachel
30: To Mom and Dad with love, The memories are so abundant, it’s where to begin that’s the problem. Well here goes. 6 kids and one on the way, to some it would have been a burden but to our Mom it was a blessing! More cloth diapers and bottles to wash, but Mom still says those were the best days of her life. I give her so much credit because with Pampers, diaper wipes and a microwave I still don’t know how she did it!! She never really complained about all the responsibilities, it just came natural to have a broom in one hand and a dishtowel in the other. Apparently, I was a pretty uneventful birth, just typical labor for baby # 7. Mom always says that the way she got through every labor and delivery was to say a prayer that it would be quick and that’s what it was with me. No complications, that is until after I was here!! I was always referred to as the baby girl and Johnny, the baby boy. Back then, funds were tight, no money for film for the camera, so I do recall three pictures of me as a baby, but heck that’s okay, I cried for every one of them. Every family vacation photo has Mom and her stepladder of children, with the exception of me. I was the one with the bottle or “patch” in my mouth standing in the background bawling. How could Mom and Dad get all those kids together for a picture and have to tolerate that, I guess it was called tolerance and love!! | And oh, family vacations were the fondest memories of them all. Dad would get home from his 6-2 shift at the mill and say “Ma, get the kids packed, I decided we’re going on vacation!” and off we went. The robin egg blue pickup with cap intact, a few suitcases and a bag of groceries and we were set. The “not so good” memories were of the big kids hogging the hard benches and the little kids smashed together on the floor of the back of the pickup, choking from the smell of their stinky feet. As if we weren’t tortured enough by that and being called big babies, seeing our beloved mother smiling and singing “Oh give me a home where the buffalo roam" in the front seat really topped it off!! Then bashing on the window to get out and upfront, to no avail. When we stopped for gas and a potty break, finally Johnny and I were able to escape to the luxurious front seat out of harm’s way!! Mom always sang and scratched our heads until we fell asleep, which then seemed like we were riding in a limousine. After the pickup and the long trips to South Dakota and Canada, Dad finally realized we could upgrade to an army green paneled sided station wagon. Those vacations were heaven!! Mom and Dad then got a pop-up camper, along with it came tons and tons of great and precious memories. The ones that stick out in my mind were to Jellystone Campground in Sturgeon Bay. By that time I believe the 4 big kids begged to stay home and vowed to be good and Mom and Dad believed them!! Little did they know, the neighborhood watchdog, Lenny, told Ma and Dad every detail of the huge beer parties as soon as our station wagon hit the highway!! Somehow their children and friends were more important to them than the ridicule they must have got from Lenny. Amazing!!
31: The last few vacations were whittled down to just Johnny and I and we were in la la land!! I believe we were the only ones to have the luxury of a Motel 6 hotel bed!! Oh, and all those beloved pets. Every time another one entered the house I was told no, but for some reason they all stayed, the numerous dogs, my favorite being Puppy, the gerbils, the turtles, the rabbits, the parakeet and later on a few cats to boot. Mom and Dad both vowed each and every time this was the last pet in the house. For one, the trauma that they were put through every time an animal died and I wouldn’t come out of my room for 3 days had to have been draining in itself, but they both took in the next stray to come along for their daughter’s sake!! I remember more times than once Dad saying, "Animals belong outside; I never had an animal in the house when I was a kid." One way or another I whined until I got my way!! The other memories of Mom and Dad that stay close to my heart are how well Dad provided for us by working 2-3 jobs at a time and how Mom was always there, kept a spotless house with 8 kids and always had the right words to say to us. Christmas was always so much fun too, the mountains of presents were more than any kid could ask for!! Dad always so eager to turn our house, with the homemade pine wreaths and tons of beautiful outdoor Christmas lights, into a house only seen on a Christmas card. And Mom with the themed Christmas trees, each one so carefully planned out and new ornaments charged at Prange Way every few years!! Oh and the memories of Mom Christmas shopping until 1:00 in the morning and me and Johnny crying in the window waiting for her safe return. Each house, the Pulaski, Ash Street and Shade Tree home were provided to all eight of us by two very determined parents, who not only wanted to give us a new and bigger house, they wanted to give us a house that we felt loved in and that we could call home. | There are so many other memories of both of you that truly make all of us who we are today. Dad, the work ethic you instilled in us from little on, cleaning the garage, pulling every weed out of the garden, and I mean every weed, helping Mom with the dishes, cutting the lawn and helping out with all the numerous remodeling projects stays with all of us yet today. Your perfectionism, will, determination to “finish the job” and hard work has paid off in more ways than one. You’ve given those traits to every one of us in one way or another. Mom, the unconditional love you have for each and every one of us is priceless, your true concern, your kindness, your organization, your love of children and God and also the love and concern you show my girls are why you are by far the most important role model in my life. What both of you have accomplished by raising a big family means more than anything to me and I can’t tell you that enough!! If there is only one great thing I can do in my life, it will be to be as wonderful a parent, grandparent and great-grandparent as both of you are to all of us!! Love from the bottom of my heart, Mary P.S I always thought that I was the only one to get the Twinkies and Snowballs from the bottom of the silver lunch pail!! What’s up with that?!!
32: To Grandma and Grandpa with love, My first memories with my favorite Grandma and Grandpa are from their house out in the country. I remember going in Grandma's big bathtub and it was so fun. I also remember helping Grandpa plant and water the garden and the flowers. According to Grandma I spent most of my 1st few years out there. Other great memories I have were when they moved 1 block away from us. I thought it was so cool to walk over to Grandma’s. Kaitlyn and I spent a lot of time in Grandpa’s huge backyard and Grandpa always sat and watched us play on the swings. One time Kaitlyn locked me in Grandpa’s shed, he got so mad at her!! Living close to Grandma and Grandpa has been so great. When I’ve had enough of Mom and Dad I always know I have a second home to go to. I loved going upstairs at Grandma’s house, Kaitlyn and I would watch TV on Grandma’s bed and play barbies and color tons of pictures up there. Grandma was always so kind to display our art on her fridge!! Oh and of course if we didn’t have anything good to eat we always knew we could go to Grandma’s and we still do!! We’re out of the Baby Bird stage though!! The tons of hours listening to Grandma and Grandpa’s fun stories when they were kids are more good memories I have. Playing cards with Grandma, coloring, eating good food that they both make and too many other things that I didn’t even mention are all memories that I’ll cherish forever. I love those two from the bottom of my heart. I’m so lucky to have them live so close by because I still get to see them as often as I want!! Lots of love, Nicole
33: My Memories of Grandma & Grandpa I know this is not a memory but I do feel honored to be born on Grandpa’s birthday. That was a gift for him and me. It’s great to know that I share my birthday with someone I love so much. To top things off I was baptized on Grandma’s birthday. That was another special gift I was given. When I was born, Grandma also gave me a gift I still have today. Which I’m wrapped in right now while I’m writing this. She was so proud to know I was born on Grandpa’s birthday, because it was shortly after his stroke, that she brought up a soft pink blanket and she wrapped me up in it when I went home. She told me that her and my mom dressed me in a beautiful pink dress and wrapped me in the blanket and off I went with my family to start my life at home. Now on to the memories.The first memories I have of Grandma and Grandpa are at the house on Wiesner Street. Grandpa always was sitting in the garage in the summer in his comfortable spinning chair and me and Nicole would make him get up so we could spin each other around the garage. Then there was the singing trout that Grandpa had hanging by his tools. He would press the button for us because we couldn’t reach it and we all laughed at it. It was so fun to see Grandpa laugh so hard!! Another memory I have is sneaking downstairs to play on Grandpa’s exercise equipment with Nicole and Grandpa coming down and catching us. We thought he would get mad but he just joined in and showed us all the new stuff he made so he could get better from his stroke. One last thing about Grandpa. He’s so worried when Nicole or I walk home from his house when it’s getting dark. He tells us that the boogy man will get us, so he gets his coat and boots on and insists on driving us home. Usually by that time we could have ran there and back 10 times but that’s okay because we know that he’s just doing it because he loves us!! | Grandma gave me special memories too at that house. She always made time for us even if she was sick, tired or needed her coffee; she got up the energy to play with us. Especially listening to us read, play hours of cards and make us the famous punchy noodles that we loved. (Punchy noodles are ramen noodles that are in little pieces in case you didn’t know) She told us they were too sloppy if they were big so she broke them in the package to make them small so she could baby bird them to us. Grandma always waited to decorate the Christmas tree until Nicole and I could come over to help. We took each ornament out, one by one, and looked at how cute it was and then hung it on the tree. She always made decorating the tree so much fun!! Another thing that was so much fun was learning to make paper hats, boats and airplanes with Grandma. She always let us color at her house too and pick a treasure to take home out of the toy box. It was usually some junk that was ours to begin with that my mom threw in her toy box to get rid of then it ended back at our house. But for me and Nicole it was really special because it was from Grandma!! Something else that Grandma still does today is rub my feet. When I’m exhausted I go over there and even if she doesn’t feel like it she does it because she tells me she loves me. Last thing I want to say that is a memory but it still happens if I go over there now is she makes me eat over the basket. She’s so afraid there will be crumbs on the floor after Grandpa just vacuumed!! These are just some memories of Grandma and Grandpa. There are so many more. I truly love Grandma and Grandpa so much. I’ll never forget all these little things that they do because I know they do them because they love me!! Kaitlyn
34: My memories with my special Grandma and Grandpa I love to be with my Grandma and Grandpa because they make me feel so special. Grandma taught me how to play so many different card games. We sit on the floor and play for hours. My favorite game is Rummy 13, I usually beat her! When I was little we played Old Maid and war. When I go over to her house I bring books and she loves to hear me read. She says I read really good! I recited her Abe Lincoln poem in 2nd grade and I will never forget it. She taught me lots of songs like Oh Mr. Johhny Go Back and Little Ducky Dottle. She told me lots of stories about when she was a little girl and she always tells me she wishes she was still little and she would be my friend. She makes me baked potatoes with real butter. She rubs my feet until I fall asleep. She taught me how to make paper hats and paper boats. I color pictures because she says her refrigerator door looks empty. Grandma hangs them up and sometimes Grandpa throws them away. Grandma makes me paperthins and I’ll never forget that. Paperthins are apples peeled and cut super thin. I stay overnight a lot when my mom needs a break. Grandma wrote lots of poems that are in books and she reads them to me. Grandma is very special to me I love her so much that nobody can believe it. Grandpa always comes over and picks me up when I get lonesome. When he drops me back off at home he says Home Sweet Home. I love to snuggle with Grandpa in his favorite chair. In the morning he always shows me the beautiful birds outside and we sit and talk before Grandma gets up because she gets up real late. He always makes sure that I eat or he worries about me. I always have to help Grandpa get his socks off and button his shirt but I don’t mind. I sound out words to teach him how to say them better because he can say words he just can't say them right sometimes. Grandpa draws with me. I comb Grandpa's hair in different styles then I give him the mirror and he laughs so hard. He laughs so hard with me. When Grandpa tries to open things or build things I always help him. I love Grandpa so much more than anything in the world and Grandma too!!! Love Lindsay | Pat & Ed, Well what can I say, I was wished into the family. And what a great family it is. Tom
35: Ahh memories of Mom and Dad, and growing up as a member of the Hendzel Clan - me being the youngest of the whole tribe. One fond memory is when Dad would read the Outdoor Life Magazine to me on Saturday mornings. I always looked forward to that magazine coming in the mail - especially the “This Happened to Me” adventure section! It just wasn’t the same if I read it myself. He really gave us boys a love for the great outdoors that we cherish. I guess the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree! It wasn’t all fun and games....I still recall Dad making me dump all the screws, nuts, bolts, etc. out of the countless jars, boxes and trays onto the garage floor and having to sort them all out - and I had better have it done by the time he got home from work! Dad used to take Mary and I out to “The Farm” to help Grandma and Grandpa out with chores. He would take us there before work and pick us up after work. We would cut the grass - goof around - pick eggs - goof around - drive Grandpa to Pulaski to get Copenhagen or get Grandma plants - and goof around some more. Then Grandma would get us “snookered up” at lunch time with the old reliable Blackberry Brandy. By the time Dad came to pick us up we were pretty well pooped out. | Well...what about Mom you might ask? For starters she’s the BEST one in the whole wide world! Ma always made the Holidays awesome! Like on Easter the way the Easter Bunny would strategically place every piece of candy all around the house and then hide the basket too! She must have spent days planning all that with the Easter bunny himself! Ma always made really good food too - from goulash to potato soup to hamburger chop suey. Somehow being the great chef that she is, she always knew that the way to a boy’s heart was through his stomach. I remember when Ma would take us shopping for school clothes and we would have to try the clothes on in the dressing room. Ma always had to have a second opinion from a stranger on how our pants or underwear fit us. So some strange woman would come right in the dressing room and put her hand in your trousers and give her opinion to Ma if they fit right. Talk about blushing! We weren’t going to buy just any old Tough Skins on a budget. It sure was fun growing up in such a big family - never a dull moment. I think we all agree that we sure appreciate the LOVE and the SACRIFICES that Mom and Dad both made for us children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. THANKS MOM AND DAD! ~ Johnny
36: My first impression of the Hendzel family was WOW - it is big. Then.... they are kinda fun and crazy! But the most important thing I see in this family is the closeness. To have so many people in a family and yet to be so close to each other......it is truly AMAZING and truly a testimonial to some wonderful parents who taught their children the importance of “family.” I remember being at Mike’s house a few years ago for Cody’s birthday. Mike was sitting at the table with his mother next to him and they were watching a Neil Diamond concert on his big screen - singing and having a good time - putting their arms around each other... plus two sisters (Carrie and Lynn) sitting on the couch behind them singing along too! I was truly touched by this scene and remember it to this day. I am BLESSED and want to let you know what a privilege it is to be a part of this family. ~ Laurie
37: "The love of a family is life’s greatest blessing." | & | December 2011