Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Make Sure She Wears Her Boots

When Daddy D and I married 44 years ago the day after Christmas, my father gave my groom this advice, "Make Sure She Wears her Boots." From time to time my husband has reminded me of this sage wisdom. Now of course, my father, a humorous fellow, was mostly joking. However, characteristically I did not always dress for the weather so advising my husband to encourage proper winter attire was wise.

As a matter of fact, I have not worn boots for years. But yesterday, we added a nice waterproof, lined pair of boots to my winter wardrobe. We live near a large park, and I needed something to wear for walks in the snowy woods.

In the woods giving the new boots a try.

My dad would have approved of my wise choice. My husband might have preferred a pair like these. Somehow I do not think that is what my father meant.

Saturday, January 08, 2011

One More Blue Child...and Another One

When my Daddy D was a baby, he wore a little blue corduroy suit. After the birth of our first son, his mother gave us the suit and asked for a picture of our son in the family suit. We took the picture and one of our second son as well. Many years later our daughter-in-law suggested that our first grandchild be photographed in the little blue suit. Our granddaughter modeled her grandpa suit with flair as did her cousin, our second granddaughter a few years later. Our grandson was the latest to wear Grandpa's suit. This is his picture.

You see pictures of the rest of the Blue Family in other entries on the is blog here and here. Before Nathan wore the Little Budgee Suit, his aunt repaired the suit enough to be worn for the pictures. Hopefully, the suit will last for one more grandchild, who is expected to arrive at the end of June.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Allerton, an Old, Old Story

Yikes, as we approach the tenth year of the century, I notice this blog has been idle since April of 2009. I know that all of the team members have busy lives, but some of us have been seduced by another mistress called Facebook. Facebook does indeed have its attractions not offered by a blog. There is the immediacy of communication, the fun games, and the entertaining quizzes. However, blogging does offer some different dimensions than the social networking giant. Blogging allows a writer to explore a topic in greater depth than a few sentences and provides the reader a chance to interact with the the writer's thoughts with thoughtful comments.

Since this blog is dedicated to what people say and moreover to the gems passed on by our parents, I offer some thoughts from my mother, Laura Gray Thompson. She wrote this story for a college English class in the 1970's. My mother, a self-made woman and feminist, graduated from high school in 1934 and earned Bachelor's and Master's degrees in English almost 40 years latter. Her story did appear on my personal blog as a Mother's Day tribute in 2008, but I want to publish the story on our team blog that is dedicated to what Mama said and what Papa said. This story is actually an event from my mother's childhood.

“Get up, get, Ida! It’s today! It’s today! Dancing around the bed of the older girl was a tiny tousled haired girl of four, clutching a small gray flannel elephant against her worn nightie. Soon Ida was scrubbing the little face, brushing the coal black and shiny hair, buttoning the little pearl buttons down the back of the starched blue and white checked gingham smack, with the matching blue and white checked bloomers. Away they went, the strange pair, the big, heavy, slow girl in her limp and faded blue dress plodding along and the little girl in her crisp smock darting ahead now scuffling through the dusty road, now running through the grass along the edge. Clackety-clack went her stick in her hand against Grandma Miller’s white picket fence that enclosed an English garden, redolent of sage and lavender, fragrant with roses. Clankety-clank went the stick against the iron fence around Rachel’s big house, with the iron deer in the big yard glowering out at the passersby.

It was because of Rachel that today was to be such a glorious one. Rachel was a big girl, bigger than Ida, though not fat big, just old big. Rachel had gone away to school and now worked for a funny old lady in a place called “Hull House.” When the morning train came in, Rachel would be on it, and greatest of all, so would children from the “Hull House”. And everyone was going to get one to take home for their very own for two whole weeks. Mothers and Fathers said that it was to fatten them up on good country cooking and to show them the grass and trees and flowers and everything that didn’t grow in the city. In the city, the roads were hard, not this lovely dust that squooshed up between your toes. But Tot knew that wasn’t the reason they were coming at all. They were coming so little people would have somebody to play with!

Down the dusty road they went, the two so different sisters, under the hot brassy sun that beat down through the dusty leaves of the plane trees. Past the white Presbyterian Church Tot ran, singing her tuneless song. “Mine will be a boy and I’ll teach him how to roll down the hill in the park and we’ll have tea parties with my tin dishes and I’ll read The Little Red Hen and Chicken Little to him and I’ll help him write a letter to his Mama on my very own letter paper with blue lines to help you write better and straighter, with a pretty pictures of Peter Rabbit at the top. Oh, it will be such fun to have a little person to play with.”Tot and Ida finally arrived at the magic place, the little green wooden depot with a shiny steel tracks in front making a ladder to the distant skyline. The blinding sun glanced off the tracks into the eyes of the waiting people. All the townfolk and some of the neighboring farmers had turned out to see Rachel’s kids.
It was a big event in a little town where nothing much ever happened. The whistle of the train at Broadland’s crossing brought a cheer from the milling crowd, and soon the train snaked into sight and slid up to the wooden platform. From the other side of the tracks where Tot and Ida waited, the view was better.

It was hot and it was dusty as Rachel and the children stepped down the wooden stepstool onto the platform. Tall Rachel and her yellow tablet was the center of attention. Names were checked off the yellow tablet; children were parceled out to the waiting families and all scattered to the various homes.
“Where is my boy? Where is my very own boy? My small person just like me.” Tot jumped up and down in sheer frustration, tears running down the now grimy face.

---Why didn’t they tell her? Don’t she know we’re poor? How can we have a kid around the house with Mom out the Allerton Ranch cooking for the thrashers. I know that she is lonely with only a fourteen year old brother and a sixteen year old sister to play with ---and both of them to busy to pay any attention to her. Good thing Sam taught her to read and write, even if she is only four. Gives her something to do.---“Don’t cry, Tot, don’t cry.”“ ‘n’ I was going to show him the chickens. Bet he never saw a chicken. I want my boy. Everyone else got one and I never got one.” Tot sobbed on.
--- I’m going to get out of this damn town and I’m going to see that Tot will sometime get something she wants.---“Don’t cry, Tot, don’t cry.”

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Our Blue Family

In his post of June 22, 2008, Daddy D wrote about his family heirloom little blue Budgee Boy suit. The suit was initially worn by Daddy D himself. Then, both of our sons were photographed in the suit as babies, and more recently our oldest granddaughter wore the suit for a picture-taking afternoon. A few weeks ago, Luke put her grandpa's suit on our youngest granddaughter.

When composing this blue-suit post, I remembered an unusual expression that Luke would utter as a child. At about age three, Luke would say from time to time, "Remember when I was a blue child?" Now, I am not sure exactly what Luke meant. Since he was never actually blue, maybe Luke was referring to wearing his daddy's little blue suit. I will never know.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Mama Doesn't Have Back (Nor Does Her Baby)

For the past six months, I have been following an eating plan suggested to my husband by a dear friend. The plan he suggested is The G.I. Diet by Rick Gallop. For a variety reasons, Daddy D decided to try Gallop's easy-to-follow-traffic-light plan. Even though I too could stand to lose a few pounds and chins, my weight-loss on this plan was almost accidental. I was following the plan for convenience so not to prepare two different meals.

Recently, our diet enthusiast friend kindly commented to me that I should get off the diet as I was losing too much weight on "the bottom." Now, my butt is not a part of my body that is especially large even at my heaviest weight. His comment reminded me of something my mother used to say.

My mother, who in many ways was twice the woman that I am, did not have a particularly large posterior although she battled weight problems much of her life. She would say that her diminutive rear was due to a special medicine called Noassitol (pronounced N0-Ass-At-All.) So my lack of back is either due to genetics, or I take the same medicine as my mom did. My mother, Laura Gray, was a bit of a character. You can read more about her sayings here, here, and here.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Fun Monday - Blue Forever

The Hula Girl at Growing Older But Not Up is this week's Fun Monday hostess. For our Fun Monday assignment, Hula Girl is asking us to show those pieces of clothing we just can't part with, whether we wear them or not.

I have not worn this particular article of clothing for sixty some years. You might recognize the little blue suit worn by Little Budgee (that's me) from my wife. Molly's post last week. Considering the age of the corduroy suit, this piece of clothing is in relatively good condition. My mother saved this little blue suit and encouraged us to have our son's pictures taken in the suit.

When Dean had a lovely child of his own, our daughter-in-law suggested that our first granddaughter wear the blue suit for picture-taking. Doesn't she look lovely in her grandpa's suit? The tradition of the Little Budgee Boy suit will continue as the little blue suit is washed and ready for our youngest granddaughter to wear as well as her little brother or sister.

Little Budgee's first granddaughter

To see other folks valuable clothing, visit Hula Girl at Growing Older But Not Up


Sunday, June 08, 2008

Fun Monday - Shoot 'em Up

My bride, Molly of Return of the White Robin, is the host of this Fun Monday. The assignment this week is to describe a happy memory from your childhood. If possible, include pictures with your reminiscing.

One of the happy memories of my youth is the memory of building various kinds of models. My brother and I did a lot of models. He was actually the better builder. Sometimes a model car was assembled and glued together; and then those original kits might be taken apart and built again. Maybe that was due to being without much money available to buy new kits. However, it was probably as Mom thought, we were destructive. To do a rebuild would prove her wrong. She would think this was a creative act and not just destruction. However, my brother and I did shoot up nearly all the rest of our models with BB guns. Maybe, Mom was right after all.

Here is a picture provided by my wife of a model car from my past youth. In 1960, this model won “Best of Show” at a hobby store. Since so many different components came together, this was very positive experience for me. The model has a 1956 Continental roof, a ’32 Deuce Roadster body and engine, and an Indianapolis racer front end. There are many other parts, such as the carb intakes from Revell’s tug boat.

To read about other happy memories visit Molly at Return of the White Robin.