Monday, January 19, 2009

Happy Birthday, Sylva!

For the first sixteen years of Sylva’s life, January 20th was her birthday, to be shared with no one, especially not ‘the nation’. But, as luck would have it, in 1937, January 20th was chosen for the inauguration of American Presidents.
So, much like Aunt Doris in the later years of her life shared her birthday of September 11th with ‘9/11’, Sylva began to share her birthday with another sort of history--the beginnings of Presidencies. And, so, while we on this blog remember our Sylva, we also remember and honor the new beginning of today in Washington, DC and wish our new President, Barack Obama, congratulations, and good luck.

Sylva Howland Emhof—Jan 20, 1921 By Aunt CB

Second daughter of Lil and Elmer Howland, Lil being sister to Ethel B. Taylor, she was always received with great joy by all the Taylors. Well-to be honest, ALL of the Howland girls were. They were a part of all the joy and mystique which emanated from Grandma Baker and Adin’s farm!

Sylva was closest in age to Esther and they both were piano and organ players. Both covered every minute of their adult lives with talk and playing music.

She married young and had three children, a son, Freddy D, and two daughters, Linda and Christine. Fred was a farmer for years, so they seldom could take a REAL vacation, but encouraged others to come to them, and come we did. The Lochners, particularly, came almost every summer for a few days, fishing, swimming in the creek, and just plain playing on the farm!

She had reunions there, at whichever farm she lived on at the time—and Freddy, who drove school bus to supplement his income, took us all for a ride—what a treat!

The Kinsella kids still remember their visits there—that’s where they met a lot of Gladys’ and Philly’s kids!

Picture One: Back, Esther, Sylva, Ethel Taylor Front, Lucille, Harold Picture Two: Freddie & Sylva
Picture Three: Five Generations-- Lil 91, Sylva 62, Linda Arnold 42, Kathy Arnold Miller 19, Melissa Kristen Miller-born 8/19/83 Picture Four: Sylva and Esther
Picture Five: Sylva and Esther


Kathryn said...

Happy Birthday, Aunt Sylva!!
I love you!!!!
My Aunt Sylva has always been the best! When some of my younger siblings were born, the rest of us went to her house to stay for a while. I remember cooking with her and just enjoying being there. She has always been great to talk to also. I could tell her anything and she was wonderfully understanding. As a teen, when I clashed with my Mom, it was Aunt Sylva I talked to. She loved me, and she loved Mom and never betrayed my trust.
By the way, she gave me a recipe for chocolate cake with 'no cook custard icing' when my sister Laurie was born. Many years later, I made it for my parent's 50th anniversary. That's when I found out that the recipe was Esther's first.

CB said...

Yes, Kathryn, your Mom and Sylva were like 2 pages in a book. Stuck together!! Sylva misses her so much now, that is one of the reasons why I write Sylva every week. I know that your Mom would have been there helping her all she could and I try to fill that spot a little! CB

Julie said...

I remember many, many vacations on the farm. It was right up there with trips to Allegany each summer. Swimming in the creek was my favorite part of the vacation, although I also remember playing in the hayloft, rides on the tractor and my brothers blowing up cow pies with firecrackers. That was probably their favorite part.