Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Diploma from The Big Horn Academy, 1923

This is the inside of Mother's diploma from the Big Horn Academy in Cowley, Wyoming. The cover is brown sheepskin or soft cowhide in a buff brown, about 12" x 5". What a bit of history from our mother, Minnie Wasden Blood.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Steve's Seagull and Christmas

In the early '90's, I, along with the help of Judy and friends, including Dad, Ann, Steve, David Paul, and other Oly-Tumwater friends had a holiday boutique on Tumwater hill at our home that was very successful. One year, Steve designed a group of Christmas decorations that included this seagull (by the way, copyrighted by him). Dad cut out lots of seagulls, buffalo, boots, and I can't remember what all that I painted, and we sold by the bunches. Dad sold his wooden boxes, which were a big hit, his bookends, and the cowboy pins, among others. Ann did Scherenschnitte, David painted beautiful boxes (I have one).
The other part of this story has to do with my ineptitude in getting plants to bloom. I faithfully stowed the little Christmas cactus away in a dark place for a couple of months, got it out, watered it faithfully, and look what I got - one bloom that is about to open, and two more potential ones. Next year, it will work better - or I may read the indoor gardening book that tells me how to achieve more success.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Dad sends his Christmas greetings

More Flowers for Christmas

I was just repenting enough of my sour disposition to toss in another bouquet in Penrose this morning, when I was delighted to see Judy beat me to it!  But here are a few more, for Laura who is better, for Paul who is home from the hospital, for Velna who miraculously had a doctor who knew what he was doing for a change and is doing fine at home, for Ron B. who continues to mend, for Ron G. who is following instructions about snow blowing and doing fine, for Tom who goes on despite his ailments, and for anyone else with an ache, a pain, an ingrown toenail, or a hypochondriacal frame of mind.  At latest count, we are all home from hospitals, doctor's offices, and pharmacies, thankful to be home for Christmas and to be on the mend.  How can we do any better than that, or be any more grateful this day before Christmas?

And yes, I do remember taking the tree out on the front porch, and whatever toys I could find, to take a picture, because I wanted to remember this tree with its load of precious tinsel saved and stored from year to year and the Christmas that we shared at home.  We had no idea that we were poor, because we were so rich.  And we all remain rich to this day.  Merry Christmas and happy Christmas memories to all.

Flowers to Cheer Velna Blood and Paul Tanner

The hydrangea blossom is for Velna. We are so blessed that you were at home instead of Hawaii and that everyone moved swiftly to take care of you. We love you!!!
The holiday colors are for Paul who just came home from the hospital and is recovering from surgery. Ann says that with Paul asleep in his recliner with the TV on, life feels "normal".
To Velna and Paul, we wish for you a speedy recovery and for life to be a lot less exciting.
Merry Christmas to all.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Christmas Tree from the Past

The early Baby Brownie either didn't have a way to use flash bulbs, or they were too expensive, but one year Dwight wanted to get a picture of our Christmas tree and some of the presents, so he moved it all to the front porch. It's nice to have this early picture.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Christmas Toys

Sharing Christmas was the high light of the day for us. Mom was always found in the kitchen helping and unfortunately there are no photos of that. Dad was the one who played with the toys and games. This is the year the girls got new jump ropes. But guess who played with them first!

Jay, Ross and Ginger, the cat, look admirably on. Notice the balmy weather. What a contrast to this year.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Talking with Dad

I love this picture of Dad with the twinkle in his eye. This could have been with any of us six kids. The look would have been the same. Notice Dad's attention to what is being said. I'm sure that it was some nonesense. But it was a very good moment to have!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Another Memory Jogger

A little while back Judy posted a picture of her well loved doll she had received for Christmas one year. Here is a picture of two of my favorite Christmas gifts I ever received, while living in Penrose. The little brown and white bear I received the year I informed Mother I did not want a doll for Christmas, but wanted a teddy bear (when I was probably in second grade). This was close, and the little creature was well loved. There is still a bell in one ear that probably drove Judy crazy when we slept together because the bear was my friend and slept with me. The jewelry box (forgive how the inside looks, but that is the real me!) was a most amazing gift I received my Senior year of high school. For some reason I wanted a jewelry box, although the only piece of jewelry I had was a pearl ring Judy had given me to wear for a few years, and a few pairs of clip on ear rings (very big flowers!!!). There was no logic to that wish, but this has been a priceless gift that has traveled many miles with me. The lining in the compartments is from the scraps of my green velvet dress I wore for Judy's wedding. There is a place to stash more treasures by lifting out the piece that holds the treasures you can see. It holds even more mysteries! Dad did sign the inside of the lid - I wish it had Mother's signature as well because she played a big part in making this become a reality for me. This was definitely a gift of love, as were all the gifts we received at Christmas time, big and small. What are some of your favorite Christmas gift memories?
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Thursday, December 4, 2008

The Christmas Angels

This picture, taken in December, 1955, shows our angelic younger sisters at their very best - demure poses and all. This was my last Christmas at home, and it was a special one. You can see the tinsel on the tree that was carefully saved from year to year, to say nothing of the decorations and lights. No matter what our age, Christmas was and is magical. Occasionally I still look for the chocolate creams and the ribbon candy that we used to get in our stockings.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

When Santa Came to Powell

Santa's Visit to Powell -
Remember how it was in the late 1940's and the1950's?

This picture is from the PT web site, where there is a story about how Santa came to Powell and opened up the festivities for the Christmas season. My, how things have changed!! Steve called tonight and we had fun talking about our memories of when Santa came to Powell, and Mother would take us in to town for the festivities. Judy, Steve and I spent weeks in anticipation of the day. Santa came in from the airport (go figure!) and that was certainly not the way we imagined it should happen. There would be the trips to Samsels and Bonners, among a few of our favorite places to spend our wishing time. Steve's memories are very vivid about this adventure, mine are somewhat spotty. However, I do remember oohhhing and ahhhing at all of the amazing treasures in the stores that seemed to magically appear just in time for Santa's visit to town. So my question is, did Louise, Dwight and Elizabeth get to go to town when Santa came, or was his visit a creation that happened too late for you to enjoy the magic? I tried to get a picture from the PT web site, but I couldn't figure out how to get into their archives. Maybe Dwight still has some pull and can find a picture from the early days to post.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Report on Mince Meat Pie

This picture gives you just a hint of our Thanksgiving Friday. There are about 4-5 people missing in this picture. Names aren't important - I only wanted to give you a little bit of an idea as to why I am sleeping well these nights. You would think that among this group there would have been someone who liked Mince Meat Pie! One of the classics went something like "we don't put lettuce in a pie, we shouldn't put meat in a pie". So, let's just say it was not a hit. Somehow there isn't an appreciation for what some of us consider to be the finer things in life!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Happy Birthday Wishes to Kathy

While I was in college the year of '58-'59, Ann wrote voluminous letters, missing no details. And often she signed them "Kathy", which I believe was her new but short lived romantic identity.

Incidentally, in one letter she mentions that the "Kitty had 4 little kittens, two coal black and two just like her. We are gong to keep one of each." Yes, there was always one cat or another in her life.

I looked desperately for the 2 photos I have (had?) of Ann's coronation. Not finding them, I am substituting these pictures that were taken at college. Is this Provo or Weber? Anyway Ann still looks quite queenly to me. She is very beautiful. No wonder Paul Tanner fell for her!

During the few years that Ann and Paul called Olympia home, we were privileged to share family events. This is one of the best of Ann, along with little Kristen....
So on this 66th birthday, we give tribute and salutations to our sister Kathryn Ann, who brightens this life for the rest of us. Our lives have been a little happier, a little funner, and filled with a lot more love and forgiveness because of her.
Many returns of the day!