Genealogists, are you writing your own memories?

As a family historian, I keep reminding myself to write my own memories. Minnesota winters mean backyard ice skating rinks. My childhood home in Saint Paul had a large backyard and that ¼ of an acre corner lot provided plenty of room for such a skating rink. I vividly remember my Dad going outside in the dark and cold to use the hose to give us a nice sheet of ice. We’d watch him through the dining area windows. He also used an oscillating sprinkler to keep “watering” the rink in the night. He did much of the shoveling after snowfalls, but my sisters and I did, too. We had nice snowbanks into which we could fall.

I remember sitting in our kitchen lacing up my beautiful white figure skates and then carefully going down the back steps to skate like an Olympian. OK, that last part is totally a lie. I did my share of falling on my butt. It was painful to see scuff marks on the white skates. We didn’t play hockey as far as I can remember. The rink also provided a place for neighbor kids to skate. I regret that I have no pictures of the rink or of us skating. My Mom was not a great picture taker.

Today the owners of that home have a large two-car garage and a house extension on the property. No more room for our giant skating rink.


© 2022, Paula Stuart-Warren. All rights reserved.

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