As I Remember



Reminiscences of and for the Family

We all like reading exceedingly, also. Everyone had a book as we went down the road, and of course Mom was on the Library Board, so there were always new books around. Can't remember exactly what day the Saturday Evening Post arrived (it just wasn't Saturday!), but there was no problem getting someone to go for the mail that day, because it was popular with everyone.

We made bread in a big hand-propelled mixer; it was like a bucket and could be attached to the bottom of a chair with a vice-like affair on the bottom. There we would sit turning that mixer and reading-- usually the Post, but any book, too. Another turning job was the butter churn. Since we had cows, we had lots of cream and we made our own butter weekly, or oftener. Churning the butter wasn't nearly as happy a prospect because the cream sometimes would be temperamental and you could turn forever and get nothing but an unpleasant smell for your efforts! There was a windowseat in the kitchen, and it got might hard before the butter was ready and finally went into an orangy-yellow ball. And then of course you had the job of washing it off over and over until the buttermilk was all out. Couldn't read while you did that! But as soon as possible, we would escape with a book or magazine to our favorite tree and finish off whatever we were reading high above the ground-- usually ignoring the "yooo-hooo" as long as it felt safe!


Discipline was usually Mom's domain. We were spanked liberally, usually with the "wash stick," a light-weight dowel-pin-like affair that she poked at the clothes in the wash boiler. Dodi and I felt that Billy never got as many as we and many a time we would gleefully chortle when Mom would stride purposefully out to the back room to get the stick for "Pill," as we mostly called him! I remember only one spanking from Daddy, and that was whenthe whole family had inadvertantly eaten a jar of green beans that evidently would have given us botulism. We were each to swallow castor oil, and I just couldn't bring myself to do it. Daddy's hand took care of that resolve! We actually would stand in line on the east porch (torn off when the present garage was added to the house) and WAIT for our spankings! And if Ross had participated in whatever had been forbidden, he stood there obediently waiting for his share! One time we had been at Daniels' and evidently had gotten into some difficulty, because I remember Orin (Ross' dad) reaching for a switch from a tree. I didn't wait for mine-- in my mind, I feel I cleared the fence in a single swoop!


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