Friday, December 19, 2008

Prinderella


Before the carefree days of the polkadotzi gang there was the real wearing of the polka dot dress shown on the header.  It really is or was an old fashioned bathing suit made by me for a sort of weird Miss America contest (actually Miss Wing Ding but that takes a lot of explaining.) As well as making and modeling the old fashioned bathing suit, we had a talent contest, and here you see yours truly in her winning talent: Prinderella and the Cince. You can see here that half of me was in shambles and ashes, and the other half in a fairy tale princess dress. It was blue.

I'm wondering now why the rag dress was used. Was that a dress I wore and sacrificed for the contest? I know it was a home made dress and now that I think of it, didn't we do a lot of sewing then. It wasn't at all the dark ages, but it seems to me if I wanted a new dress I had to make it,

Thursday, December 11, 2008

White Gifts

A favorite childhood memory that stands very strong is the White Gift Service we would have every December on a Sunday evening at our church. My dad had constructed a large white cross. We would all bring canned goods or other food stuffs wrapped in simple white tissue paper. 

After singing Christmas carols, and probably a short meditation, the lights would lower and all eyes would focus on the cross. Row by row we would move to the front and lay our white gifts at the foot of the cross. The food then was taken somewhere where there was a need. I don't remember that part, but I do remember the wonder of it, from a young child's perspective. Simple, but profound.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Off they go

My Uncle (great, that is) Albert and his wife Minnie on the boat that took them to China. This must have been in the 30s. They were missionaries. My uncle never came home (I lost two missionary great-uncles in China in the 30s, one on my mom's side and one on my dad's side). He had a ruptured appendix and died from infection. I wonder what those boat trips were like for missionaries in those days. I know they did not go first class. Some were on the ships for weeks or even months. Probably a lot of soul-searching got done, Bible reading, study, reflecting, writing ... Most likely well rested when they arrived to face many challenges.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Her four girls

My grandma and her four girls. My mom, the eldest, is on my grandma's right. Twins are in front. Check out those awnings!  (Click on to see larger image.)  Note I have a grandma and a grandmother; this is not the Thanksgiving grandmother seen below in her kitchen.)

Friday, November 28, 2008

the work of Thanksgiving

I love this photo of my grandmother, for it is how I remember her most.  Seems like when I am in the kitchen on Thanksgiving Day, I often think of the women who have gone before me: particularly my mother, and this, my paternal grandmother. I always try to do so much ahead of time, but by the end of the day, it's just plain exhausting. Then I say, "Was it worth it all?"  Funny, I never heard either of them ask that, nor did I ever think they were particularly tired at the end of the day. They probably kept those thoughts to themselves. I figure in this picture my grandmother is not too much older than I am now, they just looked like old ladies a lot earlier in life back then (!!)

I do remember hers and my mom's perfectly gorgeous and delicious Thanksgiving dinners. I hope my kids will have some similar memories too. We did have a good day yesterday, and Spouse said how wonderful it all was for all of us. A new family member, under 6 months, just added to the flavors of the day!

Note: I love this photo because I can remember all the details of my grandmother's kitchen and if I enlarge this I see many familiar things.  Most of my memories of grandmother were of her in this kitchen. While this is a happy photo to me, if you look into her eyes you see sadness. My mother tells me that she had just gotten the news from the doctor (who made a house call) that grandfather was not doing well and probably would not live much longer.  We carry some of the innocent moments of childhood into our adult lives.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

45 years ago

I heard someone say tonight that there aren't too many who remember the days when you walked home from school for lunch. The day, 45 years ago, that Kennedy died, I was home from school already, in bed with the mumps. Because I was sick, I got to have the family radio next to my bed and enjoyed listening to the afternoon 15 minute radio soaps. Right at lunch time, eating the c-ampbells mushroom soup my mom had heated up, I heard the radio show interrupted by a news report of the assassination. I popped downstairs to inform the others, and the radio then left my bedside for a more central location.

My dad went out and rented a small TV for us to watch all that was going on. Because I was still housebound, I was home from church Sunday, again watching the news, and was an eyewitness to the murder of Lee H--Oswald, since it was live TV. Once again I had unbelievable news for my family when they returned from church.

Those were turbulent years. Five years later we were in the college library when the news came of the assassination of MLK and soon after (or was it before) R. Kennedy. 

not my photo
This has to be the early 70s because of the hair dos. I wonder where I was, as I don't remember this scene, but it is the house I lived in when I was a teenager and during the college years when I was home. I don't think I was home much, and I wonder if my parents missed me. These are my "Alaska cousins."  My uncle was a missionary doctor in a small town in Alaska for 20 years; my aunt, his wife, I was named for. Those were the days!

note: this is not my photo, obviously. One of my cousins is going through old photos and uploading some to facebk, which is where I pulled this from!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

at the snack bar


Here is a photo my cousin sent me of her parents--two of my favorite aunts and uncles.  They are on a date here at their college outside of Chicago in the late 40s. It would be fun to write a story about this photo. I think it's cold, as she has a jacket on, and his is tossed to the side. It looks like they are waiting for ice cream.  Guess when you live in Chicago, you don't wait for hot weather to eat ice cream!

Speaking of ice cream, I remember staying with this aunt and uncle when I was little, and I was having trouble going to sleep as I was missing my parents. My uncle decided some ice cream would help, and sure enough it did! One of those little childhood moments I will never forget!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

not so long ago

My little sister (code name, lulu) is having a birthday in a few days. I think she has one more baby photo of herself than I do. Or I should say one and one-half, as the one with me in it (below), shows only half of her at best.  The camera to take this photo was loaned to my father as the birth of their third daughter was anticipated. "Here," said his tall, lanky friend with a world-renowned singing voice, "Take this to get a picture of the baby."

So apparently we had not the luxury of a camera in those days. Which may be why photos are scarce of us two middle girls ... and more abundant of the first and last babies of our parents. (My parents taught us much about thrift and have never spent a dime on a television either. The first one they owned was inherited, after I was safely off to college. And each one after that including their current  bigger screen, gifted from a loving nephew who thought their eyesight might need the help.)

A third granddaughter and fourth grandchild has just been birthed to Lulu's son and wife in time to say "happy birthday." This one has her middle name Marian, so now we can call them "the november marians."

The photo at top is of interest to me, even though I've seen it all my life, for it shows lulu at birth, and I was in the same nursery two years earlier.  And since I am a baby nurse, it's fun to peek inside this hospital nursery and see what has changed and what hasn't!  Some things never change, such as the sweet smell of a newborn baby (after his or her first bath of course.)

Happy Birthday lulu, and wee one A.M.M.!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Ramblin' Sa


Sa, sitting on her Dodge Rambler, was my first friend. We were in the church nursery together--I came on board seven months after she did, and she's always been a little ahead of me. Her first granddaughter was born about 7 weeks before mine was.

She bravely learned to drive with this Rambler and a stick shift. It was a bit bumpy at first. Of course I wasn't allowed in the car when she was learning. But I'll never forget standing at a busy street corner where she happened to be making a left turn. She could not get it quite in gear.  Jerk, bump, jerk, bump ... her car belched across the intersection.

I moved soon after she got her license. We could have had so much fun "ramblin" around in her car! But we've remained friends all these years, through all that life has brought us. We don't see each other often, but are kindred spirits and share much in common. Our roots are deep and our bond is solid.


Sunday, November 9, 2008

The Guerrillas (see below),

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Guerrillas

Once a young woman had a following of children. She named herself and the children "Polkadotzi." Gary (the tallest in photo) of the Guerrillas soon grew fond of Dotzi of the Polkas.

Why, you might ask, am I beginning another blog? I think because I like to try things out and don't want to mess with my current blog. Like the sidelines of this blog. Pretty cool and easily interchangeable. Watch out! Also I like to write, so you never know what may appear here. I might go back to those days of polkadotzi

We will just have to see.  A new beginning, and a place to try things out.