Sunday, December 13, 2009
Mother had now achieved a level of financial stability that allowed her to purchase our first pieces of new furniture, a sofa and chair that I recall as a very pretty rose color. We were working in the cotton field and I can't recall how or when the items arrived at our home but they were left sitting on the front porch. However it came to be, we found them there and, being children, began to have a heyday climbing all over them, jumping up and down on them – in essence, having a ball. The party was to be short lived.
We saw her coming, in no particular hurry but slowly and patiently making her way across the field toward the house. She carried in her hand the dreaded hickory switch -- which on this occasion was from a tender cotton plant -- and when she arrived delivered it on the three in turn quite deftly. Her point was well made and three pairs of skinny legs told the tale. Lesson learned.
Our mother never failed to discipline us when discipline was required. It was always swift, just and thereby infrequent. Her method of parenting her children was to teach, and we learned early on that our best choice of discipline would be self-discipline.
Our mother demanded, earned and received our respect for as long as she lived. We will never forget her or the lessons she taught us.
Friday, December 4, 2009
Back in South Carolina I was taking care of our four children and attempting to sell our home there. From April until July, this activity went on with no success. Then on a Sunday afternoon in July, a weekend that Tommy did not get to come home, we had a visit from a young couple to see our house. There was no question in my mind that they would return. The very same weekend, down in Florida, things were happening. On our Sunday afternoon telephone conversation, Tommy said to me "I've found the only house that I would buy for you, sight unseen, because I know you'd love it." Excited, I told him, "Well guess what! This afternoon a couple came to look at our house and I'm positive they'll buy it. They did, and we did.
A couple of weeks later I flew down to Florida to see the house. Tommy was right. It was perfect. And in the front yard, a humongous magnolia tree shaded the whole front yard from the curb to the front steps. Later we made a return trip with all the children and they were equally pleased. In September we relocated our family to Florida and never looked back. We had the perfect house and the perfect tree. We were at home.
A few short years later as progress was being made in the local infrastructure, the telephone company came through our neighborhood and laid an underground cable down the side of our street. We would later learn that a main root of our magnificent magnolia had been disturbed and it began to fail. For ten years Tommy babied, nurtured and cajoled the tree to survive. It stood proudly as long as it could but finally the time came when safety became a major concern and the tree had to come down. God is so good. Not only did he provide shade for the hot Florida summer sun but also a touch of nostalgia to nurture our family during a time of separation from our family.
FAMILY – God takes care of His own.
Sunday, November 29, 2009
As children we spent many happy hours playing in and around the dairy and the big white house. It was quite exciting to bounce in and out of the milking barns as the cows were being coaxed to relieve their heavy load of the day. Frequently we three younger ones were allowed to observe as our older sister shared the milking chores.
To this day my most favorite of all trees is the magnolia. Not so for my husband who, upon our relocation to Florida spent untold hours caring for our very own tremendous and beautiful magnolia that finally succumbed to damage done by workmen laying underground telephone cable. Only in my mind's eye have I seen another snowball bush.
FAMILY – CONSIDER THE LILIES!
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
Thursday, August 6, 2009
Monday, July 20, 2009
Sunday, July 12, 2009
Monday, June 15, 2009
Sunday, March 22, 2009
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Saturday, March 14, 2009
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
An event that occurred routinely in our lives was "washday" when my mother and my aunts would gather up the clothes to be washed and we would head out with the cousins to spend the day at the "pond" in the middle of the woods. This was somewhat of a "community wash house" I suppose as there was a big black iron pot set up where a fire would be built for heating water and boiling the clothes. The pot was surrounded by a large area of ground that had been cleared from many a footprint having worked on it.
Of course it wasn't the work that went on on washday that attracted us children. It was the huge trees that bore "Tarzan-like" vines that we took turns swinging over and dropping into the pond as we played the day away while the wash was being done. Before returning home we would have a nice bath with Grandma's homemade soap and don a fresh set of clothes that had been washed and dried at the pond in the woods!
Monday, March 9, 2009
Saturday, March 7, 2009
Thursday, March 5, 2009
Wednesday, March 4, 2009
Tuesday, March 3, 2009
Friday, February 27, 2009
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Monday, February 23, 2009
Sunday, February 22, 2009
Monday, February 16, 2009
Sunday, February 15, 2009
Saturday, February 14, 2009
Friday, February 13, 2009
Living with our grandparents was a quite wonderful time. There were many aunts and uncles and cousins by the dozens who alternately made our lives wonderful and miserable. They delighted in playing tricks on us but they educated us in music, laughter and how to pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off and get going again when life gave us a tumble.
Grandpa had a huge old tom turkey who strutted his stuff in the whole of the outdoors. He owned the yard, the barnyard and all points in between. He got along pretty well with the rest of the family but he did not like me. If I stepped off the back porch the chase was on and didn't end until I was chased onto the porch and escaped for my life back into the house. This provided much amusement for all of course; there was no sympathy forthcoming.
Grandpa had severe asthma and spent most of his days in a rocking chair by the hearth or on the front porch swing when the weather was good listening to the dogs treeing a fox up on the mountain across the way. He knew the sound of every dog and called them out by name as they made their way through the hills. One dare not say a word when Grandpa was listening to the dogs run. To be in his presence was an honor highly desired, but to be allowed to join him on the swing or to sit on the porch steps required silence until the hunt was done.