“Happy are they who have the courage to defend what they love.” -Ovid
We are in our second family reading of the biographical Little Britches series by Ralph Moody, and we have come now to the place where, at long last, the widow Mary Emma has led her little flock (six chidren, aged from 2-15) to a place of financial stability. The family narrowly escaped from Colorado after Christmas, enduring a harsh winter in Boston, and, with the coming of spring, their in-home laundry service is finally beginning to flourish.
If you were unfamiliar with this family and this era of history, you might be surprised that it would ever be possible for such a family to support itself. Upon getting to know them, you might just as well conclude that it would be just the opposite. How could such a strong family, with such work ethic, in such a golden age of prosperity, ever fail?
Many of our family expressions come from the books we read to the children when they were lap size. Reading was a favorite pastime, and since toddlers love to hear the same stories over and over again, we ended up nearly memorizing many of the ones we had. Let me pull out (of my head) a few common sayings of ours and see if I can remember where they came from:
- When things are really busy, we just say “busytown” — I think that comes from a rather unimaginative book by that name.
- When someone has a rough time at something, we might refer to it as “knocks and socks from very large blocks” — from Bruce’s Loose Tooth, a family favorite.
- When a situation could break for bad or good, hinging on whether we can accomplish something small, we might say, “He was groping for the lever…” — from a Curious George book (about a rocket).
Well, the phrase for this week comes from our book about the Three Little Pigs. Carman has officially “gone off to seek his fortune.”
Carman recently turned 18, which is the green-light age for working in Chile without the need for special permission. He immediately began pounding the pavement in search of a job: bike shops, restaurants, construction, etc.
He pushed hard for several weeks, enduring a lot of Chilean No’s (where you just get silence). Fortunately, he landed a coding job before he was accepted anywhere else. It’s a good fit for where he is and where he is going. And it’s only a mile away.
So here’s a shot of him riding out for Day #2. Off to seek his fortune.