Saturday, July 6, 2013

Week 45 - Aunt Mary's Favorite

The name "Aunt Mary's Favorite" went with the story of Civil War diarist Mary Boykin Chestnut, who was a childless aunt many times over - a little like me.

This was a fun block. I wanted to reuse that striking dark print and the circles I bought specifically for this green and yellow quilt. The center fabric will look right when the block is set on point in the quilt.

But let's visit my Grandmother Mary at Jeff and Joanna's wedding again, and this photo of her with 14 of her 16 grandchildren.

Missing are cousins Amy and Roy, but it's obvious that Mary was happy to be photographed with the rest of us at her oldest grandchild's wedding.  Mary was an aunt many times over - my Dad had 28 first cousins.

I don't have any later pictures of Grandmother Faye with all her grandchildren - but here's a family photo with a lot of us in about 1971 I guess, by the glasses I was wearing.  The photo is from Aunt Alice's collection. Uncle Ed must be behind the camera.

Dana's Dad is in the foreground on the right, with Jeff , Dad, Mom and Roger behind him. Joyce and I are flanking our grandparents.

A more recent photo is this one of Faye with her four daughters probably taken in the late 1970's at Aunt Alice's house during one of Aunt Loris' visits from Texas.

May, Alice, Myra and Loris with Faye about 90 years old

Faye was clearly a devoted mother, and in case we might have forgotten, we are lucky that Mom saved the weekly letters she wrote to my mother while she was a freshman in college that illustrate it over and over.  Faye wrote to Loris and May every week as well, since they were both in distant places.  Oldest daughter Alice lived nearby, but frequent visits with her and son Buddy are also documented in the letters.
This week, I decided to show a few pictures of my mother, Dana's grandmother, since this coming Tuesday would have been her 86th birthday.

This is the earliest photo of her I know of  - Aunt Alice has noted on the back that it is from 1930. Alice is in the back row on the left. May is in front of her and three-year-old Myra is in the middle of the front row. (the other girls are friends)

This one of Myra and her father, Fielding standing on the hay wagon against the light sky reminds me of the  iconic images of farmers from the era.

Looking at her arms, I'm guessing she was 13-15, so this was around 1940.  Mom documented her hours helping her Dad on the farm in her 4-H project books.  Later, she would brag she could throw a baseball farther than anyone in her high school - that included the boys.  Her strength came from hand milking cows and doing the same labor as the hired men in the fields.

Joyce just scanned this one  to go with the story of building the house in Glen Ellyn.  Mom and Dad are standing on the porch at the back door, where by the time I was born a few years later, there would be a breezeway and garage addition.

The notation on the bottom of this photo indicates March, 1954, a couple of months after Mom, Dad, Jeff, and baby Roger moved in.  Dana's Dad Carl was born a little over a year later.

And here are some more recent photos - Here she is in probably the late 1970's with my little shelter dog, Scamp.  Mom was always good with dogs.

This photo is from the family gathering in 1981 before I moved to Germany- so she was just 54.

Mom always watched her weight - it was not easy for her to stay slim. She didn't believe in exercise for fitness, she believed in hard work like she did with her father when she was a teenager.  That didn't quite fit into her suburban-Mom lifestyle, but she did work hard!

This last image is a family favorite.  It was taken at Mom's 70th birthday party.

All her grandchildren were there - including Dana resting her chin on her hands in the front row.

1 comment:

Dorry said...

Love how you used the fabric at the center.

It's fun as usual to see your family photos and try to pick out which one is you!