Sunday, November 25, 2012

From IKEA to Aunt Myrtle

Back in NY, from a spacious house with inviting sectionals and spongy wall-to-wall carpeting to our hard-edged tenement life.

We stopped at IKEA in New Haven, only because I wanted some new cushion covers and of course, we come out with our shopping cart packed.  How and why, I do not know, but we had spent enough to earn free dinners for all!

I'm always intrigued with the holiday-oriented stuff IKEA hawks during the holidays which is couched in cozy Swedishness.  

My grandmother's aunt--and my great-great aunt--Aunt Myrtle was the daughter of 19th-century Swedish immigrants, and I knew her well, felt a personal connection to her, especially because she was a writer and wrote a biography of her father, my great-great-grandfather, Carl, who immigrated with his wife--new Mormon converts--from Sweden to Salt Lake City.   Carl worked in a furniture store and became a Democrat, a political party my great-great aunt inherited, which is another reason I felt so connected to this aunt.

(Look!  I found a little image of Myrtle's parents--my great-great grandparents, Hulda and Carl.) 

Myrtle was married twice--once divorced, once widowed--no kids, was a wonderful piano player, went on a mission to Sweden in the '50s, and owned a house in Encino, CA, where she died at 103, having lived in three centuries.  

And this reminds me, I've been missing a lot of dead relatives this weekend. 

1 comment:

  1. i have an great aunt like that, too, julie--love those blood connections that seem to transcend space and time. i agree about the cozy swedish christmas miasma that just sucks you right in at ikea. i wanted to go today, but knew i would spend way to much, so didn't.