Tuesday, July 28, 2009


"Are you Catholic or Mormon?" Apparently, people only procreate for God. The answer is no. My parents just had a lot of kids. So it was 1975 and there was no farm work to be done in the city--they liked having babies, I guess. Mom isn't exactly forthcoming on any sort of reasoning here and Dad's only comment that I know of was, "Seems like they were all surprises back then."

Yeah, okay, so my parents never learned anything about biology in school and never had to take a health class about the miraculous of the body. Seems it couldn't have been too much of a surprise after, say, number 2? Regardless of why Bev and Chuck multiplied 3 to the 3rd power, here I am writing to tell you all about what a crazy idea it was. Welcome to Penny Jar: A heads up on being at the tail end.

This is my second blog and probably the more focused of the two. I have only been at this a week so far, but my enthusiasm should make up for the other shortcomings (most of which I am probably not aware of). My goal is to use Penny Jar as a catalyst for memoir writing. I have been threatening my family with a book for years and I believe this is the momentum I need.

There is a wonderful English professor at the University of Wisconsin, Whitewater named Alison Townsend. I studied under her for a course in Creative Nonfiction several years ago. She had us make a list of "The stories that you keep coming back to." Despite the fact that there are so many other things I would like to write about that don't involve my family, the story I keep coming back to is this: I am the youngest of 9 children. My parents divorced when I was seven. Nobody has ever called me an "accident" to my face, but I think the fact that I was born 9 years after my closest sister speaks for itself.

She has called me, "Afternoon Delight."


  1. I love it!

    I'm in the middle, with a twin brother, of 6 kids. One of my aunts had 11, another 8, my dad was the youngest of 8, with a big age gap like yours.

    Looking forward to more here!

  2. Thank you!! I'm glad you can relate. Its pure madness. This weekend I'm going to my husband's paternal family reunion. His dad is the second in a line of 10. (I have to admit that I still don't know all their names and its been 11 years for us-ack!)

  3. Wow! What a great start to what is sure to be a fun, insightful, and exciting blog. Looking forward to reading more!