Thursday, May 14, 2009

{What's in a Name?}

I've been meaning to post this since Robert Dixon was born, but I had to wait until I found the right photos and until I got a new scanner. As I've mentioned before, my old 3-in-one printer/scanner/copier just doesn't scan well at all. It was definitely time for an upgrade, and yesterday I got the perfect scanner for my needs. I'm all set now to do some posts and digi pages of old photos! Yay!

Anyway, lots of people have been asking what we're calling the baby. Last week I decided that I'm definitely calling him Dixon. I just can't bring myself to call him Robert! To me, that's the name of a grown man, not a little baby. And despite the potential for not-so-nice nicknames, I really like the name Dixon. It's different and to me it suits my little boy perfectly. Now, if you ask Sasha and Clara what his name is, they will say Robert. And Cory calls him Robert Dixon 99% of the time. SO, whether YOU call him Robert or Dixon is completely up to you! But I'm going with Dixon.

Cory and I never really discussed many names during my pregnancy. We both agreed very early on that Robert Dixon was a good name. A couple of weeks before I gave birth we tossed around a couple other options, but we didn't agree on anything else. Honestly, it isn't that we both love the name Robert. In fact, I never imagined I would actually have a child named Robert! But the meaning behind the names is what drew us toward them.

Both Cory and I were blessed to have grandfathers named Robert. They were both amazing men, and so our little boy is named after both of them.

Cory's grandfather's name was actually J. (Jacob) Robert Meyers, Sr. Those who knew him called him Bob, and boy did he know a lot of people! Bob was a prominent member of our community. Not only did he have the dairy farm that is now known as Meyers Brothers Dairy (where Cory's dad, uncle, and cousin work), he also was an auctioneer, and was a member of the Tuscarora School Board. He was very well respected by so many people, and Cory simply adored him. Bob loved Coke, traveling, antiques, and most of all his grandchildren.

This picture was taken at Cory's high school graduation in 1995. I love the mutual look of respect between Cory and his grandpap, and check out that handshake! If you've ever shaken Cory's hand before, you know that he has a very FIRM grasp. I think this is where he got it!

And yes, this was the 90's, at the height of Beverly Hills 90210. Cory was definitely channeling some Brandon Walsh with that hair and sideburns - I think he looks SO cute! :) My grandfather was Robert Kriner, know by most as Bobby. He was also highly respected in this community and I have yet to meet someone who could say a bad word about him. He worked for the telephone company for many years and then took over the family fruit orchard and market with my grandmother. He was a Mason and a Korean War veteran. And like Cory's grandpap, he was an incredible family man - he was my Popsi.

I have so many incredible memories of Popsi - far too many to mention here. Some of my favorite memories are from the many summers I worked at the fruit market. Popsi was always there "snoopervising". I can still see him sitting on an apple crate and watching the goings-on at the market. He would usually make this whistling sound when we walked by and he always called us grandkids "toots" (rhymes with "puts"). Popsi loved cats and dogs both. Oddly enough, most of his cats only liked him and would attack - seriously, ATTACK - everyone else. He and my grandmother loved to dance and they loved to travel together. He was an incredible man in so many ways.
As you can see, our little Robert has some big shoes to fill! Cory and I hope that he grows to become hard-working, kind, and firm yet loving just like his great-grandfathers.
The name Dixon is also a family name. My great-grandparents were William (Billy) and Mary Dixon.

I was very fortunate to have them in my life for many years. My great grandmother, Nan-Nan, passed away when I was a junior in high school, and Pap-Pap joined her in heaven several years later. They were extremely active in my life and the lives of my sisters. We spent so much time at their home in the orchards. We would sometimes stay there for a week at a time and my memories of being at their home are some of the best I have. I can still hear the squeak of the screen door that led from their kitchen to what was basically a mud room. I remember helping Nan-Nan trim the grass along the walkways and around the flower beds with little electric trimmers - I can't believe none of us ever snipped off a finger! I remember how 35 cents would buy us a Mountain Dew from the old soda machine that was up at the work shed. There was always a bowl of M&Ms in a kitchen drawer and a box of Whitman's assorted chocolates in the den for Pap-Pap.
Their house was an old farmhouse, and it seemed like a castle to me. There were hidden stairwells and oodles of rooms upstairs filled with old stuff - note: old clothes and jewelry! - that my sisters and I loved to explore. We would spend hours going through these things, dressing up, and playing with our found treasures.
Nan-Nan was the most generous person I've ever met and was really a second mom to us girls. She would often pick us up from school and take us out for a frozen yogurt. She always had treats and gifts for us. But most of all, she spent TIME with us. And man, could she cook! Pap-Pap had a tough exterior (he was very well known for his hot temper!), but he was really a softie when it came to his family. He almost always had his green work clothes on, and when he was home he could be found in his den watching TV or sleeping. But a quick tickle of his foot would wake him up!
Cory and I are incredibly blessed to have a son, and it's an honor to name him after these fine family members. And if we have anything to do with it - and we do! - our Robert Dixon will become the kind of man that future generations will want to name their children after as well.
Now to make things even sweeter . . . Dixon is also forever connected to my paternal grandfather, Claude Witmer. I didn't realize it until my mother told me, but Dixon was born on my Pappy's birthday! I think Pappy was tickled pink to learn his great grandson shared his birthday, and I'm pretty giddy about it, too. I love these sentimental details! Pappy has always been a cool grandfather. He and my Grammy live in State College so we don't see them as often as we'd like, but when we were kids we spent a fair amount of time at their house. Pappy was always lots of fun to be around. He made the BEST homemade kettle corn in his seasoned cast iron skillet. He told bawdy jokes and always made us kids laugh by popping his teeth out - hilarious to a kid! He loved (and still does) to have his back scratched, so I would dig my nails in and give him a good scratchin'. Spending time with Pappy and Grammy is always fun, and we're blessed to do just that occassionally throughout the year.
The weekend after Dixon was born, Grammy and Pappy were in Chambersburg. So we of course took Dixon to my dad's house to meet them. Check out the birthday boys and Grammy at their introductory visit!
I know this is a long post, but there is nothing more important than family and that is well worth a lengthy commentary. Cory and I have truly been blessed with incredible families, and we are thankful that we are able to honor some of those individuals by making them namesakes for our boy.
Now go be a good boy, Robert Dixon! Your family is watching you . . .

P.S. For some reason, Blogger will NOT put a space between the paragraphs in the second half of this post. It's driving me craaaaaazy!!!

3 comments:

  1. I loved reading this post. Your Mom

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  2. Very special! I love family names :)

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  3. Awesome--and I LOVE that picture of your husband--totally took me back to 90210 :) Thanks for sharing that--I loved reading it!

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