Above: David and Granddaughter Amelia (1991) who finished her M.A. in Science Education in December 2014.
I hadn’t intended to write a post today, however I recalled Aunt Marge’s admonition to write even if I didn’t feel like writing, and write about my life, no matter how trivial the events may seem.
Many days, it was difficult to write a letter because I was so busy, but she always told me how much she appreciated each letter, so I tried to be a faithful correspondent. I saved many of the letters she sent me over the 70 of her 90 years I knew her, but the Angel and sheep figurines she sent when I was five, disintegrated long ago. Shortly after they arrived when I was four years old, my parents took them away from me (and ruined my fifth birthday) as punishment for my calling the priest who visited my Mom, “Damn Father poo stink.” I still don’t know why I did it, nor do I care.
When I was younger, I corresponded with my Godfather Fred, a until after I married. Uncle Fred, a genuine Texas millionaire, visited me when I was 16 and told me he would pay for my college. I could have gone anywhere I wanted, but I did it my way, as stubborn as that red-headed granddaughter of mine. Later, Fred sent me $15 to buy Dale Carnegie’s book, How to Win Friends and Influence People. However, I spent the money on a Ricky Nelson record.
Poor Uncle Fred who saw himself as my spiritual guardian, told me I should cross myself when the Devil tempted me. Mostly, I crossed myself to get out of trouble. I also crossed myself after that tonsured priest visited Sunday last.
My grandmothers also wrote to me when I was small. Some of those letters are safely stuck in my Baby Book. I don’t look at them often. Mom also pasted the first note I ever wrote to her, in ink, on a Kleenex, “Gon to MS Mac’s.” Mrs. Mac, baked great cookies.
My dad, a traveling man, sent hundreds if not thousands of postcards to me from all over the South, and I kept every one of them.
In my early teens, I wrote to pen pals, usually girls I met at Girl Scout camp. Later, I wrote letters to boys in service, Terry, Harold, and other former school chums, whose names I have forgotten. For a while I corresponded with a young Canadian soldier named Danny.
All we teen girls all had pen pals in the military. Letters to lonely boys serving in some distant land, not always boyfriends, mind you, just lonely boys we knew in high school or met in another way. I kept those letters a long time, but on one move or another, to one post or another, after I married a service man, I chucked them away.
Several small packets of letters tied together in ribbons lie stashed in a Memento Box. I don’t recall the senders, though they must have been important to have survived over forty moves.
A couple of notes and handkerchiefs are tucked together in my handkerchief sachet. Mom bought one of them in El Paso over 70 years ago, a fine filigree cactus fiber lace handkerchief that reads “Mexico.” Two others are embroidered with fanciful images by each of my grandmothers. One reads: Remembrance is the sweetest flower that in a garden grows.