The year was 1963, New Year's Eve. Over the decades, I've brought in many new years, some of them tremendously fun, some of them awfully dull, some of them not feeling so well, and I've slept through a few of them, but none of them were healthier or happier than this one.
To be honest, I don't remember a lot of the details of our party. We likely watched Guy Lombardo on TV, and ate yummy munchies that Grandma Lill had prepared . Lill, who was behind the old brownie camera that took this picture, had a stash of little tiny hats with elastic bands to hold them on, and a box of various noisemakers - some you twirl, some you blow in, others you just shake. It was a fascinating collection, which we only saw once a year, and then, briefly. We donned our garb, and for about a minute - no more - we were allowed to make as much noise as we could with our noisemakers, and then they were collected, put back in the box, and hidden in places unknown until the next New Year's celebration.
I was nearly four years old in this picture, my brother just days away from turning two. We had an inter-generational party, with our grandparents and great-grandparents, and "warm fuzzies" like we'd never have again. We had one more year with both sets of grandparents, before my great grandfather, Will Knutz, developed stomach cancer. But on this particular year, we gathered, we loved, we celebrated, and we made memories.