The following story comes from the June/July 2016 issue of Our Iowa. It is a magazine “written by Iowans for all who love Iowa.” DM
Molly Nichols who now lives in Wray, Colorado, tells about growing up on a farm with eight brothers and sisters during threshing time.
“We children were standing in the windows watching the men bring in the wagons loaded with bundles of grain. Suddenly we saw them running the horses with the wagons as hard and fast as they could. They barely made it to the barn when it began to hail.
The hail pounded everything in sight. The trees were stripped bare, and the large garden we so depended on was gone.
However, we had a mother who was a woman of great strength and faith – a simple farm wife who was very wise and depended on the good Lord for everything.
She lived well for 99 years and taught us children self-discipline. We were loved and we loved one another. To this day my eight siblings and I gather at the old home place every year to count our blessings.
But back to the storm.
As we children stood at the window with tears in our eyes, I will never forget my mother’s words: “You kids go out and gather up some of those hailstones so we can make ice cream.”
Suddenly a tragedy became a party. More important a lesson learned.
“We did manage to eat that year despite the loss of our garden. There was always Mother’s homemade bread. The chickens and beef we raised, cows we milked, and cream and eggs we sold at the grocery store.
Life was good with evenings filled with checker games, singing together around the piano and Mother reading Bible stories to us by a kerosene lamp.
We were rich by standards other than money…and thanks to hardships we endured, we still are.”
When I (DM) read that account, it made me think of my mother and the adversity she has endured.
Her dad died when she was three. This was back in the 1930’s, before all the government programs there are today. Her mother chose not to remarry until after her three kids were raised. Mom remembers eating pigeon pie, fish from the local river , outdoor plumbing, waiting in line for a bath in the washtub out behind her grandmother’s porch. When mom was in her teen’s she had to have all of her teeth pulled. Fourteen teeth at one time, no Novocain. Mom is in her early 80’s right now. I told someone just recently, she still has the spunk and attitude of a 16 year old.
Her and dad still go out at least once a day on a date….once a day! Mom tells me she doesn’t like to cook 😉 Both are very active and intentional about loving people.
I hear stories all the time.
Ling, the owner of a local restaurant lost both of her parents several years ago in China. Mom and dad are regular customers. Mom told me, just last week, Ling sat down beside her at break and put her head on mom’s shoulder. That just warms my heart. 😉
And finally, on a completely unrelated note, after all of the craziness that has been in the news this past week, I have decided to take another step back from my media intake.
Still plan to blog, but not going to attempt to keep up on all the unrest. Rather, I’ve decided I need to focus more time and energy keeping on top of things on the home front…repairs, weeds, dishes, etc.