Friday, August 9, 2013

Another Day

I got the beans picked this morning.  I cannot pick beans without thinking about mama.  It's not possible!   If you picked beans with mama, without fail, she would remind you to, "watch out for old snakes".  You know Shirley was picking beans one time and reached under a bean vine and there lay an old Copperhead"!  Mama used to get the beans snapped, washed, and in the pot and then put small new potatoes on top of the beans.  I can see her now adding the fried-out fat back grease.  A tablespoon at the time slowly drizzled over the potatoes so it could run down into the beans.  She put the lid on the pressure cooker and knew exactly how long to cook the beans.  Sometimes she would put pods of okra on the beans instead of potatoes.  Daddy loved okra cooked on top of green beans.  Everything mama did, be it cooking, cleaning, or raising us children, she did with love and care and most of all patience.   Even something like polishing silverware.  I can just see her picking up each piece, as if there was something special about that one piece, wiping it clean and gently putting it away again.  I wish I had more of that quality...my rule of thumb...give it a lick and a promise and move on!! 

Mama probably had been cleaning in this old picture...This was many years ago...the 1940's.  Still glamorous and beautiful...We were living in Summerville, South Carolina.  I remember the moss that hung from the trees.


Mama fussed at Shelby the most about keeping her room clean.  (late 1950's)  Sorry Shelby!!!  Remember what a mess your room was most of the time? :)  Not a dirty mess, but messy!!  Shelby loved magazines, books, and papers of all kinds...reading and studying and collecting...with (as mama used to say) her head in a book all the time!!!  That's where my head should have been instead of laying on my back on the cedar chest all day, daydreaming about being a movie star!!! :)  Arriving home from school one day (we were teenagers then), mama met us at the door and said, guess what I did today?  Shelby said, "what, blasted my room off the end of the house???  Of course we thought that was funny!!!  Mama probably didn't see the humor.  What mama was going to say was,  "I crawled around on my hands and knees today waxing these hardwood floors, so wipe your feet before you come in "!!!

Have I told you how much Shelby has always loved babies, always?  In this old picture (late 1940's) of Aunt Eva holding cousin John, you can see it in Shelby's eyes; she wanted so much to hold that baby.   Shelby seriously wanted to be a pediatrician and should have been...you know how things have a way of not working out.  Dreams not coming true!  Shelby has the brains to be a doctor, she also has the patience.  Shelby was the smartest in school...always in the Beta Club and making straight A's!  Jackie and I barely got by.  Daddy used to try to help me in arithmetic, fractions...he would finally give up, shaking his head as he walked off. 


 Mama never learned to ride a bicycle. (late 1940's)  I remember that about her.  I also remember when this picture was taken, even though I was very young...like second grade.   Mama was afraid the bicycle would turn over, that's why she was so close to the porch.


I keep going back and forth talking about the 1940's and 1950's.  My choking on a jawbreaker happened in the 1950's.  I was laying on the couch in the den watching The Art Linkletter show when I jumped up to say something to Shelby.  I inhaled to speak and that jawbreaker went right down and stuck in my throat.  Mama had been in the bathroom getting a bath and she rushed out in a panic and began slapping me on the back as I walked bent over around the kitchen table.  As it turns out, I had put my lipstick, my very first tube of lipstick, a little blue metal tube that costs me .15 cents at Lee's Dime Store, in my shirt pocket.  I was so bent over that the lipstick fell out of my pocket and hit the floor...mama said, "thank the Lord", thinking it was the jawbreaker that had hit the floor.  As I straightened up, holding my throat, motioning that I was still choking, I swallowed and the jawbreaker went on down!!!  Truly, thank the Lord, I could have died!!  Something from that story I think about a lot is the fact that Mama ran out of the bathroom to help me, in her slip, a full slip.  I had never seen mama in her slip before.  She was very ladylike, very modest.  She taught Shelby and me to be modest and I am very grateful for that.

Good gracious!!  Am I wound up today!!  Wonder if sitting here at this computer, enjoying this blog, (thank you, Lynn) has anything to do with more leg pain lately?

Love, 
Henny Penny







12 comments:

  1. Dear Henny,
    As I am trying to get out and accomplish my errands this morning (after 12, hardly morning) I stopped by your Lane, and loved your reminiscences about your Mama, cooking the beans and okra with the fat in the pressure cooker. My Mom likes okra, and we seldom fry things, but it sounds like the way to enjoy it. I'm so glad the jawbreaker story had a good ending! I haven't seen anyone in a full slip since I was in college...I have some half slips in a drawer.
    Don't even mention garter belts!
    Thank you,
    Pam

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  2. Oh Pam, garter belts! When I was in 10th and 11th grades, girdles were in. All the girls wore girdles. That may be the reason for my leg pain today (and broken veins). Thank goodness women are a little more relaxed and comfortable in their clothes today. The days go be too fast! Thank you for stopping by.

    Love,
    Henny

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  3. I love this blog. I love learning about grandma and the rest of the family.

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  4. Oh, Mama! I loved reading this!! I love hearing about Grandma. She was truly a lady, and she raised two ladies, and you and Aunt Shelby have raised ladies. I am so thankful. :) Love you!! I love your blog. My blog might be why my elbow hurts. We can help each other along. :)

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    1. Hey Lynn, Seriously? I wake up worrying about what I write here! Maybe we could get a Hoveround built for two. I shouldn't joke about this...Poppy may have one on lay-away!!!
      I love you,
      Mom

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  5. Dear Henny,
    In a world of 'plastics' and cheap imitations, you are the genuine article. These posts are among my favorites, as they pour out of your authentic heart.

    Always follow your heart and you will not lose the path.

    Love,
    Jen

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    1. Dear Jen,

      Thank you for such a nice compliment!! I love the way you word things!!

      Love,
      Henny

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  6. Morning Henny! Love this post...you shouldn't worry about writing here about things that make you happy, happiness does make the world go 'round. I love this story, especially about the jawbreaker and the slip... I think that generation was way more modest and I think we could learn from that. I never saw my grandmothers (or mother) except in a full slip at any time in my life. Once each. Only times, they were after me with a fly swat or a hairbrush. My grandmother came after because I chased her rooster off the porch, which was about 4 feet off the ground - to avoid the hairbrush and the slip, I jumped into her boxwood bush, which it turned out, had the rooster and a hen in it! I can't remember after that, I was about 5 years old or maybe 6. Thanks for getting me thinkin' about a happy moment in my life... They are sometimes few and far between.

    I like that potatoes, fat back and green bean recipe. Maybe you can put that up ...thanks and many hugs, Terry

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    1. Hey Terry, Thank you! That is the funniest story! I can picture you jumping off the porch and into the boxwood with a hen and rooster...the noise it must have made as they flew out!! You were probably in worse trouble then. I needed a laugh!! That reminds me of the time I touched Shelby after she said "don't touch me"!! She took off after me and I jumped off the back porch which was high! Took seven steps to get up on the porch. Anyway Mama fussed at Shelby...and a big argument started. Poor mama! I had an aunt who gave whippings with a hairbrush. Mama and daddy threatened to cut a little keen hickory switch!! Take care!
      Love,
      Henny

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  7. Hi Henny,
    May I be your agent ? that's when you write your book of course, because you surely must ! you have a relaxed style, and your posts are filled with information about the past and your words bring it all to life. (so don't forget I asked first !)
    Thank you for your visits to my blog by the way and your comments.

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  8. Wean!!! What a nice thing to say!!! It is you who can write. I was just telling Lynn how much I enjoy your blog...and asking her about different posts of yours, and if she had read them. Thank you.
    Love,
    Henny

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