With tomorrow being Veteran's Day it is not only a
time that I go into my memories of childhood and
reminisce. Not just because of what that day represents
and of how grateful I am to all of those who gave some
and some gave all, but because it would have been my Dad's
birthday.So naturally I think of him. Then there is also
the 30th of October that has just past which was my
Grandma's, Nanny, as we grandkid's called her, birthday.
So this time of the Fall season I get nostalgic.
I have great memories of Nanny and her farm
where we spent so much time as kids and adults.
That is where we gathered every Sunday for dinner.
And weekdays we cousins(I had no siblings) spent
most of our time there when we were not at school.
My I think now we must have been such little
trials being underfoot all the time but we would
never have heard that from her lips. She really did
enjoy and love her family.
She cooked this wonderful meals every Sunday.
Now most of us have passed on or are scattered near
and far, but days spent with her are forever engraved on
my memory. So I would like to share one story I wrote
about her for my children, who were to small at the time to
remember much about her, as a memory for them of my
childhood and their Great Grandma fifty years ago.
Time keeps passing, the seasons keep changing , years march
along, and this old world keeps moving along, and along with
it passing changes are slowly pressed upon our lives. Some of
these changes were good and made all of our lives easier with
more variety and with modern conveniences to make the
everyday work loads lighter. Some of the changes we tried to
resist because in their application it took away a way of life
that was warm and familiar, and seemed to erode our family
ties and customs. Simple everyday household helpers with
time slowly slipped away with the coming of a disposable society.
One of those simple everyday items that was used that has
disappeared from sight is the woman's use of the old bib
aprons that was worn everyday as they went about doing
their daily household chores. While jogging through the dust
in my memory, there is also the memory of the old cotton
bonnets that were worn by women as they went out doors to
do the daily chores or to work in their gardens.
I remember and picture Nanny in just this way.
Nanny when we were all very small use to always grab her old
cotton bonnet when she went out the back door to hoe in the
garden. Whether it was to keep the sun off her head or just
because women covered up more in those days, I am not sure.
It was probably a mixture of both. She gave up the use of the
bonnet through the years but she always wore her bib aprons.
Nanny had a few aprons some plain and some flowered.
Those that she wore for everyday were worn and faded with
their use and a couple of good aprons that she put on when
company came or for Sunday dinner.
Time or lack of it was not the factor then . In those years there
was more to do everyday with cooking, cleaning, sewing,
gardening, and canning, because everything was done
from scratch. With lack of materials and money one repaired and
tried to make things last as long as they could. Nanny's apron
was a convenience for her busy work days. The apron always
had a pocket for the handkerchiefs she used. The handkerchief is
another article that has went by the wayside becoming now a
collector's item. Nanny's apron always had a safety pin fastened
in the top of the bib below her strap. You never knew when
you needed a safety pin for an emergency , there it was always
handy and did not get lost, they were considered gold in their uses
Nanny's apron was what kept her dresses clean from the
flour for making pies, cakes, cookies, rolls, and homemade
doughnuts. It caught the splashes of the piles of pots, pans,
and dishes from the large meals and baking that she did everyday.
It was a quick towel when she had to dry her hands fast to check
to see what one of us grandkids were screaming about. Often then
it became the thing used to wipe off a dirty tear stained face , or
to wrap around a cut finger until we got to some water to clean
Nanny's apron was a great carry all when nothing else was found
near by to use. I have seen it carry vegetables and fruit from the
garden. While checking on the hens it has carried the eggs that was
unexpectedly found in a hidden nest. Even some baby chicks that
had to be moved inside to keep warm or to protect them from
the fox that was sneaking around in the night.
Nanny's apron always got a work out at butchering time, at chicken
cleaning time, or when canning days came into play. It was a handy
pot holder for hot cast iron skillet handles or old water boiling kettles
that were used. On laundry days it caught the splashing of water as
she scrubbed clothes or had to wipe her hands from the water
that dripped down an arm as she hung the clothes on the clothes
line to dry in the sun.
Nanny's apron for her was a very used and useful friend.
It is for me a fond memory of her, her life and all that she
did in her lifetime. It was a part of her and it told of the hard
work that she did daily for all of us because she loved us.
It is a warm and pleasant memory out of time and the dust of
To the Memory of Nanny, With Love,
I would also like to say to all the Veterans and families
of Veteran's that I thank you with all of my heart for
all you have done or given to us to keep us a free nation.
Thank you just does not seem to do enough so
support are armed forces everywhere.