I recently took part in a cookie project called Operaton Cookie Takeover. The group was looking to send donated cookies to the U.S. troops in Afghanistan and their goal was to collect 1,200 of them to distribute to a base there. Once they had a facebook page started, it made the rounds to Cookiers near and far and you know what happens when we all get wind of baking for a cause…
According to their post a few days ago, they are expecting almost 13,000 cookies to start arriving, so they can now spread the love to even more troops on more bases! Donations are coming from those with cookie business to the neighbor lady down the street. The power of the internet and a small idea is truly astounding, is it not?
All the thought that went into designing cookies to show support to those who serve got me thinking about my own family. I am by no means the family historian because I am horrible with remembering dates (I save that for my siblings), but that doesn’t mean I don’t truly enjoy the stories. It’s so important to know what our parents, grandparents and great-grandparents did before us. I thought these cookie creations would be a great chance to a little research myself.
This is my Grandpa Willie. He served in the U.S. Army from 1942-1945. Durning his service, he was stationed in Okinawa, Japan as a foreman of sorts, getting things ready for the construction of airplane shelters. Though he never fought in combat, I was told he pitched a mean hardball for the men. There are letters he wrote to my Nana during his tour that are filled with everyday happenings and relayed with such sweetness, missing her and my aunt, as a toddler, who he jokingly refers to as “Gus”.
Grandpa Willie is 96 years old now, still keeps orderly notes on his coin collection, and has the best one liners ever. When recently asked why he doesn’t go down to Happy Hour in his building, he replied, “It ain’t so happy.” Well, what IS happy is his anniversary next month to my Nana at an astounding 73 years together. That’s right, people. SEVENTY THREE.
Here’s another Veteran in our family. My dad. Nineteen years old in this picture and so darn cute! He served in the U.S. Air Force from 1956-1960, and was Airman 1st class by the time he finished. He had been stationed in California and Arizona, but 2.5 years of his tour was in Japan. Overseas he worked in the computer department of the parts depot, sorting through and fulfilling replacement requests for military vehicles and equipment. He also played on the Air Force tennis team and ran track, though he says he wasn’t very fast compared to the “superstars” he ran with. Some stories he told me are best left off the blog post, but I can tell you that if you ask him to recite the nine digit Air Force number on his dog tag, he still can.
Not only was I able to show a bit of thanks to those who are currently serving in Afghanistan by making these cookies, as well as give a little shout out to the veterans in my family, I had the opportunity to try out some new photography ideas with another challenge by LilaLoa. I’m finding that props are super fun to work with once you get the wheels turning and start digging around the house for things to use!
The Old Glory that is the background for these photos belonged to my husband’s paternal grandfather. It’s an oldie and only bares 48 stars, but unfortunately Grandpa Lloyd is no longer with us so we don’t have any information on where or why he had it. Guess some stories are meant to remain a mystery.
I had started this blog originally as a way to simply share my cookie creations, but as it goes along I am discovering it is turning into much more. Sharing cookies here becomes research, therapy, history lessons, artistic challenge, and just plain fun. Thanks for stopping by…I hope you will continue to join in this journey with me!