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Josh, the Theologian

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While going through papers, because we are moving, we found this note written by Joshua!

For Christ there is no storm too great or too violent to calm. Not the largest most deadly hurricane, nor the worst monsoon. Not even the storms that sometimes cast shadows on our lives. It’s unfailing trust and faith in Christ which gets us through the hardest times in our lives. And it’s faith in Christ which helps us to brighten the lives of others around us. When Christ is in your heart the forecast is always bright and sunny.

On the back of the card is a time table: 9 X 8, so he must have been learning his multiplication tables at the time. Was that the fourth grade? What he wrote behind the card is so much more mature and full of faith.


Written by peterkrey

May 11, 2014 at 1:12 pm

Posted in Family, Sayings, Theology

A Humorous Letter from Rev. Graham, thankfully not discarded

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Rev. Graham and his wife, Gusty, an elderly couple, who befriended my father when he was a pastor in Ambridge, PA, visited us back in Wilmington Massachusetts and I remember how he admonished my father that he should also learn something from his children. My father became angry and said that the children learned from their parents and not the other way around. I sent a letter to the Grahams because I said I saw them as such a model couple. I had never spoken with any friend of my father’s ever before. That I saw him as such an example is the reason that this gentle soul sent the humorous farce about fighting with his wife. They really had a great relationship. He calls her a little bundle, but she was six feet tall! At the table he would always say, “Gusty, are you still in love? Have a pickle!”

We’re moving. Here is the letter I just found going through boxes of old papers:

June 2, 1966

(I’ll add a line to Mother’s full letter.)

Dear Peter and all the other good Kreys (There ain’t no other kind of Kreys than good ones):

Have just come in from a game of golf – a game I try to play twice a week in order to get a fresh supply of oxygen into my red blood corpuscles. Today I played with an architect (born in Switzerland and now retired) and with a retired postmaster (born in Italy). I did not play too well. A comrade of mine became suspicious of my orthodoxy. He watched me drive the ball, not straight ahead but first across to one side, then across to the other side, then across again, and so on. He accused me of trying to play Catholic golf, because I had too many crosses.

I’m afraid, good Mr. Peter, that you set Mother and me too high as examples to be followed. Mrs. Graham is a rough character, and so am I. I become enraged and exceedingly violent. And I seize the little woman by the hair and give her a terrific shaking up. Then I seize her and explode into many, most abusive vituperations at her, and then I pitch her with utmost unchivalry through the back door into the back yard.

But does my violence subdue her? Not in the least. Back into the house flies the little bundle of dynamite; she hurls herself at her spouse, grasps my hair by the handfuls and yanks them out with female efficiency, so that my poor pate is soon going to be as smooth as the skin of a Baldwin apple. To be sure, I have reported her unseemly roughness, (reported it to the police department, indeed). But did I get relief? No, the big, huge policeman turned upon me and denounced me as a rogue, a villain, an unchivalrous helpmeet, and threatened to put me behind bars.

So there! Unhappy me! I think I’ll get an airplane and sail off to Argentina and reside among the Indians in some deep, dark jungle.

Still, upon reflection and quiet meditation, I am concluding after all that, having been patient, really patient with her husband for over fifty years, she really is a gentle and sweet lady, and if she will accept me, I’ll give up all notions of flying to a jungle in South America to live among the Indians. Anyhow, they might roast me in a fire and make a meal out of me.

Coming down out of nonsense to the level of sense, we thank you for the account of the doings of Mother and Father Krey, and Ruth – she is a stately lady – and Esther – all bright and gay with her Harvard professor; and Matthias graduating and on his way to Borneo, Japan, or “somewhere East of the Suez, where the best is like the worst” (as Kipling says); and yourself looking out along the same path which was trodden by your good father; and Mr. Andrew, mounting proudly up to six feet – tell him that Goliath mounted up to nine feet but his height got him into trouble near the Vale of Elah; and Mother Krey is feeling lively again – what a wise and lovely soul she is and an excellent companion to your father; and your father now sixty-eight – yes, we join in wishing him many more years of progress in theology and as the head of his household.

And what shall I more say – of Johanna – bless her heart; of Phoebe, whose two children love her; of lovely Tirzah; of manly John; of Mother Mirjam, whose warm heart warms up the cold city of Quebec; of school teacher Rhoda; of twenty-year old Priscilla, beautiful and fair and pleasant; of high-schooler Philip; gentleman Shem, the teenager and strong; and the twelve year old tender of the geese, little Suzie who has many charms.

Congratulations to you all. You are millionaires in the wealth of love and family life and faith.


Mr. Graham

N.B.: Esther’s husband, Al Lowrey, was a comptroller of Brown Brothers and Harriman, who lived in Harvard Square, but was not a professor at Harvard. Matthias was designated by my father to become a missionary, but he became a pastor to the people who usually say “Eh!” in Canada. So that did make him a missionary, I suppose. Tirzah was the teacher. Rhoda became a physicist. Those are really the only mistakes he made trying to relate with all of us sixteen children. (James had already died.)

Also note how he has the style of St. Paul’s greetings at the end of his Letter to the Romans, where he also greeted Phoebe, who delivered the letter for him to Rome, and Priscilla (and Aquila), who are also greeted by St. Paul there. While he reminds of the dastardly humor in the “Ransom of Red Chief” and mentions Kipling, he has the artistic touch, imitating the style of St. Paul’s Epistle to the Romans, quite easy to miss. I’m so happy that this letter survived.

Written by peterkrey

April 4, 2014 at 12:44 pm

Tweeting on Twitter

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I like to polish sayings and they just work really well on Twitter. I was carried away this morning and put in seven all at once. See my hashtag: Peter D S Krey@krey_peter.

Written by peterkrey

August 28, 2013 at 11:32 am

Posted in Sayings

Check me out! I’m putting my sayings on Twitter: see krey_peter

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See krey_peter

Check me out! I’m putting my sayings on Twitter. Very often I think of short sayings and then I just forget them. You might find them helpful and in some I even try to be funny. Like Nora says, “Twenty thousand comedians unemployed and you’re trying to be funny?”

Written by peterkrey

February 15, 2013 at 12:17 pm

Posted in 1, Sayings

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More family sayings, mostly my Father’s

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Some More Family Sayings, Mostly my Father’s  (After the family Reunion in Cape Cod)

“Don’t fall on your back and break your nose!”  This was a funny saying of my father’s.

„Mit Viel kommt man aus; mit Wenig hält man Haus.“

„Augenblick! Muss mir erst eine Piep stoppen!“ (My father would usually fill his pipe with tobacco before starting the car: “One moment: I just have to fill my pipe!“)

„In der Kürze liegt die Würze!“

„Er weiss nicht wo er sein Ei legen soll!“ (Someone is looking where to sit down with his food.)

„Käse schliest den Magen.“ (Cheese closes the stomach, i.e., it finishes the meal.)

„Bier nach Wein lass sein; Wein nach Bier, rate ich dir.“ (Don’t drink beer after wine; but wine after beer is fine.)

„Er bekiegt sich von innen!” (My father would say this when he saw someone sleeping: “He’s looking at himself from the inside.“)

„Der beste Mensch kann nicht in Frieden leben, wenn es den bösen Nachtbar nicht gefällt.“ (“The best person cannot live in peace, if it does not suit his evil neighbor.“)

„Und so auf ein Stutz!”  (and so all of a sudden!)

„Morgen, Morgen, nur nicht Heute, sagen alle faule Leute.”

„Wenn der ganze Schnee verbrennt, die Asche bleibt uns doch!“

“Mass media molds the minds of mediocre money makers.“ (a saying of Johnnie’s)

„Kleider machen Leute.” (“People are made by their clothes.”) (I added to that: “But I don’t hold much of people, whose clothes can already make them.”)

„Was ist denn mit meine Brille los? Sie ist doch mit Fäts beschmieret!“ (In the old days, a church had only one hymnal. The pastor would read the verses line by line and the congregation would repeat the words to learn them. Here a pastor takes off his glasses in the middle of that exercise, saying, “What’s wrong with my glasses? They are smeared with dirt.” Only to discover that the congregation is repeating his words: “What’s wrong with my glasses? They are smeared with dirt.” Mindlessly they keep repeating what he says. “No, I mean my glasses!” “No, I mean my glasses!” etc.

„Mit dem Hut in der Hand kommt man durchs ganze Land.“ (“With hat in hand, one gets through the entire land.”)(This speaks of using a conscious kind of humility, which places a person under the radar and avoids any conflicts.)

(„Sie bezahlen zu Viel zu sterben aber zu Wenig um zu leben!”) “They pay you too much to die on, but too little to live on.”

„Schuster bleib bei deinen Leisten, sonst sollst du kein Schuster heisen.” (This saying is about staying in your profession. If a cobbler starts fixing televisons instead of shoes, he will no longer be a cobbler.)

Written by peterkrey

July 26, 2009 at 12:52 am

Posted in 1, Family, Sayings

More family Sayings March 11, 2009

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„Du hast recht und wer recht hat der gibt ein aus.“ Then he would hold out his hand making believe he expected something. “You are right and whoever is right picks up the check!” might be a way to translate it.

„Husch die Lerche!“ This is how my mother said, “Hurry up!”

„Lach doch mal. Lach doch mal. Dann weine!“ When we were halfway between crying and laughing, my father would tease us: “Why don’t you laugh? No, well you’re going to cry!”

„Meine Tante, deine Tante!” When A wheel wobbled on its axis, my father would say, “It’s going from your aunt to my aunt!” With two syllables, the saying would sound funnier in English: “The wheel is going my uncle, your uncle!”

„Das Schwarze: das sind die Buchstaben!” When we were reading and my father wanted to be funny, he would act like he was more than illiterate: “Those black marks: they are the letters!”

„Alles so auf ein Stutz!“ (“Everything so all of a sudden!“) My father said this when he felt too surprised by something.

When we all had to push a heavy load together, we used the words: “HO RUCK!” We would all push with the word: “Ruck.”

Unser Leben wird siebszig oder achtzig Jahre, und wenn es köstlich gewesen ist, dann ist es Mühe und Arbeit gewesen!” (“We can get to be seventy or eighty years old and if our life was precious, then it was filled with work and care.”)

„Wer am letzten lacht, lacht am besten.“ (“Who laughs last laughs best.“)

Auf jedem Pott passt ein Deckel.” (“For every pot, there’s a lid that fits it.“)

Was man nicht im Kopf hat, muss man in den Füssen haben.“ (“What we don’t have in our heads, we have to have in our feet.“)

Der Apfel fällt nicht weit vom Stamm.” (“The apple does not fall far from the tree.“)

Hast du ein Brett vorm Kopf?” (“Do you have a wooden board in front of your head?”) This meant, “Why weren’t you understanding your instructions?”

„Gott ist Mühlen-mahlen langsam, mahlt aber kräftig fein. Was mit Langmut er versäumt, holt mit schärf er wieder ein.“ (“God’s milling grinds very slowly, but God’s milling grinds really fine. What escapes because it takes so long, God recaptures by such precision.”)

„Der bekiegt sich von innen!” My father would say this, if he saw someone sleeping. (“That one is looking things over from the inside.”)

„Es wird schon schief gehen” (“Don’t worry. If something can go wrong, it will!”)

Written by peterkrey

March 12, 2009 at 6:21 am

Posted in 1, Family, Sayings

Three More of my Father’s Sayings

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Three More of my Father’s Sayings

1. „Man kommt nimmer auf einem grünen Zweig.“ Literally the German idiom goes: “We never get to a green branch.” But it means that prosperity always seems to elude us. (“We never do succeed in making ends meet.”)

2. „Erstens, geht es anders und zweitens, als man denkt.“ The English equivalent would be: (“Life is what happens when you have made other plans.”)

3. „Was dein ist ist mein und was mein ist, geht dir garnichts an.” (Whatever is yours is mine and whatever is mine is none of your business.) My father said this to demonstrate the violation of reciprocity and mutuality.

Written by peterkrey

February 6, 2009 at 5:45 pm

Posted in 1, Family, Sayings