Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Mother's Chronicles

Yesterday, I shared with you my sister’s tribute to our mother where she advises that Mother chronicled much of our lives in spiral notesbooks and on calendars. I wanted to share this with you a little and to document the precious treasure she left our families. You see, Mom didn’t just write down every deal of my life and my sister. She also added in our husbands when they came along and of course she recorded every minute she spent with our children.

Here is one entry regarding my son and his 7th birthday.

August 21, 1992 7 years old $38.87 (the amount Mom spent for his birthday)
Found a cute puppy dog card. Blank inside. Front had three cute puppies on it and inside I wrote “You are so special to me and I love you so much.” I put a $5 bill inside card…mailed it before his birthday, so he would get it before the 21st.

Got him a pair of jeans, Rustler “Wrangler” brand from K-Mart size 10 regular-----and a Bugle Boy shirt from Belk in a royal blue color with different Bugle Boy “sayings” on front of shirt----short sleeves

Also at K-Mart…found him a remote big wheel truck on sale! Battery toy truck with big wheels and a hand held remote to press buttons to make truck go forward, reverse and turns, and lights on front that come on.

The reason why Mother always recorded how much she spent was she was a stickler on being equal and fair. If she spent thirty-eight dollars on one she would make sure she spent the same amount on the other kids. It was maddening for all of us but it was so totally Mother.

Her notes when on to say:

Hadn’t got K. (Dear Sister’s daughter) nothing in real long time, so I found her a little denim draw-string purse. It was light blue with a row of eyelet trim around the bottom, and four satin flower buds ( 2 orchid/2 pink).

Mother continues:

M. (my son) will start to school August 24. K. will go into the third grade while M. will start the second grade. God willing M. will have a little brother or sister this time next year! (I was pregnant with Dear Daughter)

A folded piece of paper in this same birthday journal tells me that on Mother’s Day, 1993 we had the following meal at Mother's-----

MeatLoaf, Mashed Potatoes, Butter Peas, Steamed Squash with carrotts and onions, orange congealed salad with fruit, Corn Bread squares, hot homemade biscuits, sliced tomatoes, cucumbers, and radishes and finally, Sour Cream Poundcake. Mother also included a note that it was my daughter’s first Mother’s Day with us.

In an entry for July 11, 1993, Dear Husband’s birthday Mother included this bit of information that I should have in a baby book for Dear Daughter, but don’t……

R. is growing. She can flip over from her stomach to her back. She coos and smiles and was so good.

And not to leave out my son Mother added:

M. got in the pool and showed me how well he swims----I’m so thankful he can.

Yes, sad times are detailed as well:

Christmas, 1987
Such a sad and mixed up time!
I was sick. Sooooooo sick. Mentally as well as physically.
Yes, it was a crazy mixed up time.
Mother always worried about others and never wanted to be burden to anyone. Her writing dwindled while she was in the nursing home, however, every now and then it would rally. In the last spiral notebook she had written a letter that was never mailed......I'll stop this post by providing the ending to her letter. It's a fitting way to end this post with the last lines Mother ever wrote:
I had better stop for now.
I love you and may God bless you.

2 comments:

Bellezza said...

Oh, are these writings treasures. I have kept a journal for over 35 years, and have boxes and boxes in the basement, but I like how your mother recorded what she did for others. I think it would be really special, as well as heart wrenching, to reread her notes. They are a treasure, I'm sure, as those of my grandmother's are to me. I don't have nearly the amount that you do!

elementaryhistoryteacher said...

You are most correct that sometimes it is hard to read her writing, but Dear Sister and I are so glad we have it.