happiness

Sunday Drives (FGK-57)

I remember when Grandma’s dementia was getting worse and it became too challenging to take her out to do things, but she still wanted to go out and do things, we began doing longer car rides. Sometimes it was just around the neighbourhood, and sometimes around Moose Mountain, or just through Kananaskis. Just getting out and watching the scenery go by seemed to really help her feel happier. Since Covid kept us home for such a long time, I started doing the same for my girl who rarely left the house. She fought me at first, especially because she remembered us also doing the same for mom on cold days when she’d been trapped in the house, and didn’t want to have to be driven around “like an old person” (I told her to instead think of it like taking the dog for a car ride which didn’t go over much better). But she always felt better when we got out and went for a drive. It seems these “Sunday Drives” were a thing for mom in the 1950s as well. How lovely that Grandma was able to get her out for these. I’ve mentioned this before, but I realize how much I learned about how to care for people from my parents and their siblings. I watched how they looked after Grandma as she got older and the love and respect they gave her right to the end and it taught me how to look after my own parents the same way. I have watched my cousins do the same as well, and to those of you who have had to experience this my heart extends to yours with deep love. Our family is truly a gift and I feel incredibly blessed to have a strong tribe on both sides of my family.

RR No.1 DeWinton, Alta

12th Aug. 1954

My dear Margie

I was so pleased to receive such a long newsy letter from you a short time ago. I was certainly very happy to hear that you are getting about a bit more each day. I think you did wonderfully well to pass your exams with an A1. You surely must have your head screwed on properly. I am sure I wouldn’t have been able to accomplish all you did during the year and pass with an A1 standing too.

I do hope you’ll be able to drop in to see us some Sunday while you are out for a drive. We would all love to see you and have you to ourselves for at least a wee while.

I haven’t much in the way of flowers to see this year as they have had a good hailing twice already this summer. I guess there can’t be any nice dahlias this year. Ed is positively sick when he looks at his lovely crops. They have just about been pounded out of existence. I did manage to get twenty pints of peas in the deep freeze. I don’t think there will be any more by the look of the pea batch. It looks pretty sick right now.

I have had a few visitors this summer. Tuella Kirkland nee Pollock stayed with me a few days. She has two children, a boy eight and a girl ten. Everything hummed around here while there were here. It seemed very quiet after they left.

The girl friend from Ottawa that was up there years ago was back again this year. She stayed from Monday until Friday. She is going on to Kamloops, Vancouver, Victoria, and then back to Trail. She surely has a trip mapped out for herself this year. She has a month’s holidays so she has quite a bit of time to do it in.

Clarence has been just fine this summer and is beginning to talk a bit now. He has a pup that he likes a lot and Auntie Margy brought him a kitten last week. He has a big time with the two of them. However, the pup and the kitten don’t get along together any too well.

We three went around that new road through the Forest Reserve last Sunday. We went with Ed’s sister Esther and her husband (Mr. and Mrs. Herb Jenkins). They have three children so you see we were a real car full. It was the first time I had been over it. We went in through Turner Valley and Long View. It was the first time I had seen the famed “Stampede Ranch”. I was a bit disappointed with it and thought it would be more distinguished looking. It sure didn’t look like much. That is the ranch that the late Guy Weadick built up as a dude ranch.

I was to see the dentist the other day and what do you know, I got them all patched up in one hour. I usually have to go back several times.

Well Margie my dear, it is getting late and I seem to be running out of chatter too. I guess I am getting too sleepy to write properly. So until net time I’ll say “cheerio Margie dear” You’ll be hearing from me again.

Much love

Aunt Annie

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Curling and Rings and Things (FGK-56)

Until reading these letters I had no idea curling was such a big thing in Cochrane. I’ve never curled, although my kids were lucky enough to get to experience it through 4H. They had no idea what they were doing, but they had a blast.

At the time of this letter Mom had been sick for over 4 years and was 15 by this point. The letter was addressed to the Junior Red Cross Hospital, so mom was in the hospital still, but I’m not sure how much time she’d been able to spend at home. When I think about how much my kids changed between the years of 11 and 15, and of mom spending those years in bed literally fighting for her life it’s a bit sobering.

For those of you who have seen Mama Mia, the dot dot dot in this letter made me think of that, although this was the 50s and a much more innocent time, so Donna’s (the author of this letter) dots I’m sure were a much more pristine version of Donna’s (the mom in Mamma Mia) dots in the 1970s. I don’t know who Donna is who wrote this letter, but she sounds like a person I’d have loved to hang out with!

Cochrane, Alberta

December 11, 1955

Dear Margie

Hi, I’ll bet you thought I was never going to write. I was beginning to wonder if I’d get time myself. Guess where I am now? I’m in the bus station waiting for the bus to come in so I can get on (Oh brother, Ernie Andison just came up behind me and scared the living daylights out of me). Well, anyway, I stayed in after school to go to the doctor so I have to catch the bus home. I’m not taking singing anymore but I’m going to start again after Christmas.

Do you know what? I’ve only got two dollars left and I’ve only bought four Christmas presents. I guess I’ll sort of give dad a little surprise and hit him up for twenty dollars. If he doesn’t give me any he won’t get a Christmas present from me. You won’t have to worry though, yours is one of the four. I’ve got David’s, Kay’s and Elaine’s too. I’ve got all my Christmas Cards sent so that’s one less worry.

David’s ring sure is nice.

Do you think I’ll get to see you in the hospital on Sunday? I’ll bring it along just in case so I can show it to you. It just wouldn’t be any good without your approval now would it?

We’ve finally starting curling. I’ve only played once and I’ve already got a big bruise on my knee. Guess I’ll learn someday. Heather, Donna Nelson, Myrna, and I have a team in the draws and I’m skip. Big deal eh?

The choir went to Exshaw on Monday night with the cantata. Heather and I went with John and Aileen and we were the first ones there and the first home again. It pays to go with good people, eh. Were the roads ever icy! It rained Sunday night and then froze. I think we could have skated all the way up. We were mad at the Exshaw people because they hardly even clapped for us so we were awfully hurt (Boo-hoo).

10:15pm

We curled tonight and guess what – we won! Miracles do happen, though!

December 16 (Science Class)

You’ll get this letter yet!

We went to choir practice last night and patched all the bad spots in the cantata. MaybeI’ll be perfect when we sing it for you (Ha! Ha!)

I”m going to curl on John Copithrone’s mixed team on Saturday nights. Pretty good eh?

Do yo know what we had to do? We had to write part of a short story for English and it’s going to count for half our mark for the Christmas test. Just imagine me writing a story. Know what I did? I copied a passage out of one of Jane Grey’s books. Aren’t I a bad little girl?

We write our Christmas exams next Mon, Tues, And Wed. So far, I haven’t got any to write on Wed, so maybe I’ll skip. David’s coming to town Wed to see the dentist so …………….!!!!!

Well, I can’t think of anything else just now. Guess I should pay attention for a while anyway.

Hope I’ll get a chance to talk to you Sunday.

Bye for now

Lots of Love

Donna xxoo

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Everywhere I went folks seemed glad to see me (FGK-55)

What I remember most about Aunt Gertie is that she always had a smile on her face. When I saw her at a family gathering I always looked forward to visiting with her because I knew I would walk away with a smile. What a great way to have people see you in the world – wherever you go people are happy you’re there!

I love her letters, she describes things so well I feel like I’m there, and it was kind of fun to have a little tour around Alberta.

Cochrane, Alberta

Nov 9, 1954

Dear Margie

Well since I last wrote you I’ve covered some 100 miles and had a really grand trip.

The first day we went to Wetaskiwin, Camrose, Banff and Rosalind. It’s this last place we visited my friend Ruth Ballard and her family and stayed there for the night It was so nice to renew old acquaintances and get caught up in the news.

Next day we drove to Castor and Coronation. We stayed here for 2 days visiting Butterfields. Ray and May got me my first tea schools(?) near Veteran. They both teach school. May teaches Household Economics and Ray is the principal. When we arrived at the school Ray was conducting cadet performances outside in the school yard. They were very interesting to watch. Besides the boy cadets he had organized a girls cadet corps. They have smart uniforms too. They wear short black jackets and green and white plaid shirts. They have dark tame(?) with an insignia on the front. Ray was the first teacher in Alberta to have a girls cadet unit. Since then other troops have organized one too and various interesting competitions have resulted.

May showed me through her economics room. It is lovely with such a wonderful kitchen unit with built in cupboards, a gas stove, and an electric stove, a refrigerator, mix master, washing machine, and ironed. On the sewing side they have large cutting tabled, mirrors for sheering, fittings of dress, etc. And some fine sewing machines.

In the evenings we had good companionship. George and Ray got along famously. They went hunting one evening after school but didn’t have any luck. Around Wetaskiwin we saw huge flocks of ducks and geese.

We went back to Veteran where I used to teach and I met several I used to know and some of the students I had, They are nearly all married with children of their own now. It was 23 years ago I taught there so I thought they did well to remember me. Everywhere I went folks seemed glad to see me and I came home with such a wonderful glow of happiness.

When we came back to Didsbury we stopped and visited Alf Allan and his wife. We had such a wonderful supper there and they showed us all through their ____ school. It accommodates 500 students and is truly modern in every sense of the word. What a difference from the schools I attended!

Coming home we stopped at Brushy Ridge for the card party and raffle. It was lots of fun. Needless to say we didn’t get home until 12:30.

It’s so lucky we went when we did. During our absence our hired couple found a new job – closer to town. They had helped us get all caught up and the house was just shining so we were grateful for their help. However now we are on our own we won’t be able to make anymore wonderful visits like this one.

Annie and Ed were here Sunday. They are looking just fine and Clarence David is such a Bonnie boy.

Sibyl and Jack were here too and Albert Shickey and Ralph Kerr so we had a real nice visit.

Well Margie, I keep looking forward to the day when I can see you. I hope it won’t be long now

Lovingly yours

Aunt Gertie

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Going to School in Bed (FGK-54)

Before Covid, I would have thought that it would be a kid’s dream to be able to go to school in bed. And, although I think the girl has come to like the fact that she only has to get out of bed 2 minutes before class starts to go sit in her pjs at the computer, I would have to say that no- I was wrong, these online classes are pretty challenging. Of course, it’s a different situation than the one mom was in, and it’s even a different situation from my own online classes which are set up really well with lots of support. Instead it’s become pretty isolating and really difficult to get help from the teachers. I’m guessing mom hated going to school in bed. The only childhood stories about school I ever heard were the ones where she rode her horse with her brother and sister to the Jumping Pound School. However, pre-covid we used to joke that living life in bed like the grandparents in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory would kind of be like a dream come true. Not anymore!

Pearce, Alberta

Feb 19, 1954

Dear Margaret

It was so nice to receive a letter from you because I thought you would be getting so many letters that you wouldn’t find time to write to everyone, but you did anyway and I hope you will continue to write. I received your letter February 12.

Do you enjoy going to school in bed? Are there many children taking the same grade as you are?

Yesterday we went to Lethbridge to the dentist, all but my oldest brother. I had two teeth x-rayed to see if the roots were ok so that they could be filled later if they were.

The wind was sure blowing today. One of our granaries blew part way off its foundation. It hadn’t done that before even when it was empty. There was a tiny bit of wheat in it.

The subject that I like best at school is Science and Home Economics. We sure got a good science teacher. I dislike Social Studies the most because of the teacher Miss Hyssop, who hardly anyone likes. She likes to see how much homework she can give us. We had a test in Social Studies today.

I have got a pen pal down in Burbank California whose grandparents on her mother’s side live in Calgary.

A few days ago my kitten and my sister’s kitten followed us up to the bus. They raced around, laid on the ground and rolled about kicking their feet in the air trying to get some attention. They started to fight once then raced up a light pole. When the bus came they raced towards the yard, their tails awfully big. They were sure scared of what we sometimes call the “Yellow Bug”.

Are you at all lonesome for the farm after being in the hospital? Did you have any pets at the farm you lived on?

That is all for now, hoping to hear from you soon.

Yours sincerely,

Mary Ann de Koning

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Career Day and French Class (FGK 53)

We are in the final stretch of the school year for my girl and I have to say the stress level is unbearably high. Compared to the requirements her “in school” friends have, the online expectations are through the roof. 70ish years ago it seems as though the stress on students was about as high.

June 20, 1952

Dear Marg

Gee it’s been nice out. Didn’t do a thing over the weekend though. Went to Eklund’s and played five hundred (Marsh and I). Saturday night Pete and Jeff Norman came down and taught us a new game called “blackout’. It’s sure good. Something like whist.

On Sunday Nichols had a tobogganing party but I didn’t go ‘cause I didn’t feel so hot.

Anne O <this is the friend From yesterday’s letter, she signed it Anne O> went up to Edmonton with a bus full of kids from Tech this weekend. They started at 7am Saturday morning and got back 6am Sunday morning. I guess Anne was dead tired.

Peggy and I went to see ‘Stars and Stripes Forever’ at the uptown staring Clifton Webb. It was really god. All music and comedy.

Mom bought me a white blouse and some more pyjamas. Real jazzy.

I guess Peggy and I came in on time yesterday ‘cause Sonia said that they just had our door open when we were coming up the stairs. They were going to put breadcrumbs in our bed. They did to Barbara and Evelyn and they haven’t a clue as to who did it.

Jan 22, 1952

Well I’m writing this at 8:15am so please excuse mistakes. The Winnipeg ballet was really good. There were three different stories one was the Shooting of Dan McGee. Peggy went at night and she said it was just dancing, no stories at all.

Peggy says to tell you I’ve been feeling stupid all week, and I have too.

Dr. And Mr. Gordon went to California yesterday. Oh Happy day!!

Well must go to school now

Love Sheila

Thurs Afternoon

Well, I went to see Mr. Colette about that career day. There were three of us. Jane Rowan, Doug Hamilton and I. We’re going to have Ken Coppock talk to us on agriculture.

And in French did I ever feel dumb. I was talking about keeping awake in class and about how to do it. I said to Sheila (she sits in front of me) “I wish I could find a formula to keep awake” and Miss Devivona(?) heard me. She was coming up the aisle so she put her hand on my head and started shaking it. “Oh do you Sheila. Let’s see if you can get on without it” or something like that. I blushed like mad.

Fri. 3:00

I was sick yesterday after school.well anyway I went to see Mr Collette about that career day and I might have go to ask Ken Coppock to give us a lecture on agriculture besides interviewing 3 other speakers. It’s good training I guess but Gad!!! I wouldn’t be able to say a word when I am with them. Oh well!! The worst they can do is kick me out.

Well must get my homework done

Love Sheila

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Sorry I Haven’t Written, I’ve Been Too Busy Wrestling (FGK-51)

Honestly, these letters make me realize how pathetic my social life is, and not because of Covid. He says he hasn’t had enough exciting to write about, and then describes more activity than I’ve seen in like 3 years haha. I am much relieved though 70 years later to not be the one ratting out my uncle for climbing out the window, instead it was the other kids (it’s always the other kids). Seriously, these Mount Royal days sound like a lot of fun.

Writing Marsh in these letters feels a little bit like the time, years ago, when my son touched my cousin’s husband’s moustache. We were all frozen with fascination and horror, but knew that it was something that shouldn’t happen and never, ever would again.

My uncle would have been almost 16 when he wrote this letter (mom would have been 12.5) and it seems his love of airplanes had already started. I absolutely love that he was going to take his airplane engine into the hospital to show her. I would imagine that would have given everyone there something to talk about!!

Mount Royal College

May 12, 1953

Dear Margie

I’m sure sorry that I didn’t write much sooner but I just don’t seem to be able to think up enough things to tell you that would be worth while to put in a letter. Last night before I got the last card you sent me I started to write a letter but just before that I had a wrestling match with Bernard. We were so evenly matched that the fight went on for a long time until both of us were too tired to fight anymore. I started to write you but fell asleep for the whole study period so I had to do my homework this morning after breakfast.

Last night the other two boys in the suite with Wayne and I crawled out of the window and got in their car and went across the bridge to get some milk-shakes. When I woke up there was a milkshake waiting for me. They’re darn lucky they didn’t get caught. The window to the suite is very easy to get in and out of as they sure make use of it. I haven’t used it yet but I think I will soon, just for the fun of it.

Last Saturday I was plowing with the new John Deere and boy is it slick. To trip the new plow, instead of pulling on a rope you just push the hydraulic lever ahead which pumps oil into a cylinder on the plow and trips it. I suppose that you do not understand all that lingo but it works on that principal. There is only room for one person to ride on it because it is a big high tractor like this:

We just started to plow on Saturday. Bill and Ken are going at it full force now I guess. It’s still pretty wet out there though.

Well, we sure got a big slug of calves now. Must be 250. I’ve got 27 I think and should have three more coming.

Last Saturday I got Red in to ride and he hasn’t been rode for quite a spell so when I climbed on I had to pull leather for a while because every time I went to grab the horn it wasn’t there. Well I sure rode him when I got everything straightened out. He never piled me though, but I guess that ain’t my fault.

I’m truing to sell these Stampede Queen tickets, butI guess I aren’t a very good salesman. That is the most hopeless job there ever was. I’ve had them a month and only sold two of them.

Did I tell you that I bought a little airplane engine? It’s a real internal combustion engine that is like a car motor. It burns high octane gasoline. I am mounting it in a boat which is a model cruiser. It should go about 15 miles per hour. I will bring it in to show you on Sunday. I started it up this afternoon and it sure roared. Tonight in study period I was fooling around with it and I accidentally started it. I sure was scared and I couldn’t shut it off. I grabbed the flywheel to stall it and the thing only turns over about 10,000 times every minute so I slightly burned my thumb but I finally got it stopped! I was sure scared the study teacher would hear because it makes an awful roar.

See you Sunday xxx

Marsh

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The Mumps and Menus (FGK-50)

Having spent a great deal of time in hospitals while Mom and Dad were in dying (I tried to put that more eloquently, but it is what it is) I don’t think hospital food is anything like it was in the 1950s. Not that it would have come close as a substitute for Grandma’s cooking, but aside from the poison they served on Thursday for lunch, it doesn’t look that bad. Thursday’s lunch brings back childhood memories of sitting at the diner table, my piece of liver covered in at least 4 inches of ketchup, and little Melissa crying her eyes out after realizing that no amount of ketchup could hide the nasty taste of the liver. Poor mom, she really loved it and the full on rebellion she was met with meant it didn’t grace our dinner table often (but yay for me!)

Pincher Creek, Alta

Aug 9th, 1955

Dear Margaret

Well last night at this time I thought I would be with you by now. You could have knocked Janet and I over with a feather when we got your message at Macleod. I guess we looked like two stunned ducks. Oh well, we had a nice morning drive. I sure hope you are not too sick with the mumps. Anyway you should be immune after this. Neither Janet or I are afraid of being exposed to them as we have been exposed many times, so I certainly would like to spend a few days with you as soon as you feel you can stand one – let me know.

Your mother seems to be very busy this time of year but maybe I could help her some.

Have a good rest and get caught up on your radio programs. I don’t suppose you’ll feel much like reading but I am sending you a few hints in this card to help you feel amused.

I got through grade 12 all right but nothing exceptional. I haven’t made plans for fall yet, you know they turned me down when I applied to nurse so now I have decided on Pharmacy or Lab Technician. I’ve been working a Drug Store since school ended but finished last Saturday. I am going to Beauvais Lake tonight for a few days.

This is short but I hope to see you before long. Don’t give the mumps to the rest of your family.

Love Verna

I tried to zoom in on the days a bit -so it’s the same menu below
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Fur Coats and Casts (FGK-49)

I had a little giggle at the thought of Grandma writing this letter while at the hairdresser’s. Getting her hair done was one of Grandma’s sacred activities and it was always important to her that her hair was done nicely and she was presentable. In fact right after she died, my aunt in a beautiful act of love and kindness sat down and did her hair properly before the funeral home took her away. I sat with my aunt while she did that, and it has always remained with me as one of the greatest acts of love that I have witnessed. It also was the only time I ever saw Grandma’s hair down.

I remember as a teenager Grandma deciding she needed a new fur coat. I was lucky enough to only be pulled into that process for one day, but trust me- it was not a 10 minute process. It was not even a 10 hour process. It perhaps was a 10 day process, but it felt more like a 10 week process. Aside from my personal ethical issues with fur coats, that experience guaranteed I would never own one! She sure loved it though, and it was certainly the style at the time.

Finally, there have been several mentions in these letters about packs and casts. I did a little bit of research about why these were used And you can read the atricle here. But here is an excerpt from the article “Early treatments for paralyzed muscles advocated the use of splints to prevent muscle tightening and rest for the affected muscles. Many paralyzed polio patients lay in plaster body casts for months at a time. But long periods in a cast often resulted in atrophy of both affected and healthy muscles. Treatment of polio was revolutionised in the 1930s by Elizabeth Kenny, a self-trained nurse from Queensland, Australia. Kenny developed a form of physical therapy that used hot, moist packs and massage and exercise and early activity to maximize the strength of unaffected muscles and stimulate the remaining nerve cells that had not been killed by the virus.” I remember mom talking briefly about how painful the treatment sessions were and this kind of makes me throw up in my mouth a little. Poor mom.

Tues 4:30 pm

Dear Margie

I’m writing this while under the dryer at the hair-dresser’s. We came to town – Dad and I – to buy me a fur coat. Think of that! Aren’t I lucky? Dad said we could easily do it in 10 minutes so I didn’t dare shop around for one but got a very nice one at the Hudson Bay. A Persian Lamb.

Uncle Harry is coming up to visit you with me tomorrow so be prepared for fun and have a few jokes to tell him too if you can – he has wanted to see you for a long time now. I may not wear my new coat in, the car is so hard on it – I’ll keep it till Sunday to wear eh?

Kay Whittle and I are on the refreshment committee for the Eastern Star tonight so I made 2 angel food cakes and a loaf of chicken sandwiches and left them at Aunt Ruth’s. So Dad and I are going to a show now and then go up to Cochrane and not go home till after the Star meeting. Pretty soft life eh? But we’re retired now you know – haha.

It’s sure nice being without a hired man though and Ken likes it too I think. Most of the cattle are over in Grand Valley and down at Springbank so others have the work.

I have been hoping and praying that you will soon have that old cast off, let’s hope soon anyway eh? Maybe tomorrow.

This blouse and skirt are not very expensive but are good enough tor lying in bed don’t you think? Everything is half-price now except the better wool skirts and they cost $20.00 so I just got those. They see you for a long time now. They are rather pretty I think.

We are supposed to go square dancing Wednesday night. Dad has Lodge meeting Thursday night and there is a dance in the Hall Friday night and Winnie and I have to make the sandwiches so I won’t have any dinner parties this week – we’ll be staggering tired by Saturday.

Well I must close now and will see you tomorrow. Sure hope you are well and happy.

Loads and loads of love dear

Mother xxxxx

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Closed because of Polio (FGK-48)

I don’t remember being told about places being closed regularly due to polio outbreaks, but it does seem as though this was happening during these years. This letter, and a few of the others written from mom’s hospital friends make me think that she was one of the last ones left on the ward from their original group. It must have been so hard on both sides, leaving your friends knowing they were still ill, and watching your healthy friends be able to go home. Especially because it seems as though no mental health assistance was available at the time. I think it was because these years were so incredibly traumatic that this entire experience was a taboo subject in our home. The more I learn about it, the more I understand that. Having spent a great deal of time learning about the lasting effects of trauma, it impresses me how well mom was able to function.

Also, imagine being able to buy a swimsuit or blouse for a dollar!!!

1814-31 Ave SW

Calgary, Alberta

August 22, 1953

Dear Margie

Yes, I’m finally getting straightened around enough so that I can write a letter.

I have been intending to write you for quite a while now but have been terribly busy.

I was at the farm for three weeks and sure enjoyed myself. We did quite a lot of canning, washing, ironing, chasing the kids, and visiting and going to drive-ins. I was really kept busy.

Last Friday (a week ago yesterday) was my birthday. I got several gifts. Mom and Dad gave me a flash camera and films and bulbs for it. They also gave me a blue nylon cardigan. I received other gifts ranging from nylon ankle socks to a wallet.

I have not seen any of the kids lately but have talked to Rose, Isabel, and Laurie on the phone.

Did Lillian leave my ?Accitec? with you? Isabel said they left “Not my will” there with so I will be up to get it in the near future (this doesn’t make sense, but it’s what it says).

I phoned Dr Richardson yesterday and asked him if I could apply for a job for Saturdays. He said to apply and let him know what I got he would then tell me if I could have it or not.

I went downtown this morning to look at some bathing suits which were on sale for a dollar. I didn’t like them so I bought a blouse for a dollar. It was regularly priced at $4.95 so I got quite a bargain.

How are you getting along? I sure hope you are making a fairly rapid recovery and will soon be out of there. When you get out we’ll have to hold a reunion of all the kids.

I guess I won’t be up for a while. The radio just said out patient was closed because of polio so I doubt if I will be allowed in. Will you please ask Miss Ried or Miss Baxter and let me know.

Well I’d better go

Bye for now, Margie and please write soon

Love,

Helen

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Margy’s Boys Had Little Lambs (FGK-46)

So, I’m sitting here with my morning cup of tea thinking about how I have so much driving to do today – I have to go “all the way” to the far South of Calgary and do some errands. Which means a trip on the TCH-1 and then on the new Stony Trail. The easiest driving you can imagine. I am struck in many of these letters at how much driving they did in the ‘50s, way before the Trans Canada Highway was a thing (I do have a love/hate relationship with that road, it’s sure made life convenient, but man is it loud to live by). But they just zip around all over the place and seem perfectly happy to do so.

I don’t remember Aunt Margy, I’m not sure when she died. But she is someone who I often thought of when my kids were little. In our family history book it was written that when she had work to do she would lasso one of the twins to a fence, knowing that the other one would stay close by, so that she could work without worrying about them. Now, I never actually had to lasso one of my kids to a fence, but it was always nice to know it was an option!! Seriously though, imagine how difficult it must have been for these women, raising kids, cooking for so many men, looking after the house, and doing whatever else was necessary. It impresses me.

RR2 Calgary

Feb 21st (envelope is stamped 1954 and cost 4 cents)

Dear Margie

How are you getting along? Swell I hope. Thank you a million for your nice Valentine. It was very thoughtful of you to remember me.

We had a lovely time at your mom’s and dad’s last night. We missed you there, Uncle Harry was there, and he was the same fun as ever. He won the travelling prize, a very nice pocket knife. I played with him at the last table and he sure was a comic.

Sheila and two girls she had with her had to be in by twelve so they had to leave early. Marshall and Harvey took them back and then we met them above Barkley’s and Harvey came back home with us.

The curling is stopped, till we get more cold weather to make ice. Clarence’s team won in the bonspiel. Harvey and I lost out in the third game. The ice was getting very heavy.

Doug Munn is in, and had another operation for adhesions, he is having a bit of a time of it, that is, his third operation this winter.

Mr Hemming wasn’t very well last week but Mrs. Hemming said he was much better today, she is feeling fine she said and asked about you.

One of Jonny Robinson’s girls had mumps so Clarence figures Don will get it. So what a job they have to look forward to and aunt Irene has never had it either.

There is a few cases of jaundice around here. Wally was the last to get it I believe.

The boys have all the little lambs now. There was one set of triplets – all living. The rest were mostly twins They sure look cute jumping and bucking around.

Must close for now

With lots of love

Aunt Margy

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