Let’s recap the Highlights of the ’40’s & ’50’s
We start out this chapter with a new name for my mother. It is “Oma” which in German means ‘Grandmother’ in the most admirable way. More on that in a few minutes but first let’s recap where we, as a family, are at this point. In the last Chapter 6, Mom and Pop achieved the American Dream. Let’s look at what was accomplished.
- Pop had a great job with great benefits. We always lived in ‘New’ 3 bedroom apartments, which meant that my sister and I always had our own rooms. By 1957, he was still 8 years away from his retirement, but planning for it was on target.
- Together they built their country home which would serve them very well all the way through retirement into their final days. They, as did I and Elizabeth, had lifelong friends both in NY city and Lake Lincolndale. We lived both the city and country lives and enjoyed every minute of it.
- Elizabeth at that time, graduated from Cathedral High School. She was into her 2nd marriage and became a mom to our ‘Lisa’ I was fortunate enough to graduate from a great school, Fordham Prep, and begin my life into the world. I was also fortunate enough to be at home, living the good life, and preparing for the future. Ahead came my job at IBM, marriage to my Lynn and our son Chris.
- Oma and Pop now could relax into the their hobbies and the less complicated tasks of American life. Lincolndale was place of relaxation. Make a beautiful garden, welcome the continued flow of friends and family, and spend time visiting their extensive list of friends.
- Pop had a great hobby in stamp collecting. He taught me that as well, but most importantly it taught me about collecting as well. We spent many hours together doing stamp collecting together.
- The subject of chasing Pop’s ancestry became important as a result of discovery of more Laubis families in America. A connection with the Laubis’ in Ohio was made.
- The biggest deal of all for them was their becoming Grandparents twice. First with Elizabeth’s daughter Lisa in 1961 and then with our son Chris in 1966. This brought with it the German name ‘Oma’ from all of us, as Grandma became queen. There is also a German word for Grandpa, ‘Opa’ but what stuck with my father was ‘Pop’ so that was his name for keeps.
- Oma and Pop had the good fortune of having Lisa live with them all through her school years. This was an opportunity to be an ‘Oma and Pop’ also to more than just our children.
What is Oma all about!
Throughout their retirement, Oma and Pop made three trips back to the ‘old country’. First was 1966 by ship in Pop’s retirement year. After that again in 1975 during which they took along Lisa and again in 1977 when they took along our Chris. Both children had the great opportunity to see and experience what life was like in those German villages where our heritage comes from. On the ’77 trip, Chris bought Oma a wall plaque which hung in Oma’s kitchen ever after. It now hangs in my den as a further tribute to our ‘Oma’. Well, of course, it is in German so what does it say when translated. So, here below is a liberal translation for your enjoyment. The story of how Oma earned the name goes on for many years after!
An Oma is probably the most irreplaceable ideal anywhere. She is always lively, knows only her duty, and grandma never thinks of herself.
In the neighborhood shops she buys, imposes the house work on her own, and the grandmother always helps out with money in the house.
A child, as everyone knows, needs a caregiver, and here we can honestly say, an “Oma” is indispensable!
The garden is also her territory and she tends to the plants, house pets, and the small farm animals. This of course is well known in both the country side and in the city, by everyone who has had a grandma!