Friday, August 21, 2009

Remember Whensday

Our First Dinner Party

A few months after we were married we invited dear friends, the Angliss', to dine with us al fresco under the tall cherry tree on Charles' parent's lawn.

What did we feast on? Ah, too long ago to remember, but I do recall the excitement of preparing the meal and the happiness of the event.

George was a childhood friend of Charles'. He and Kay had been attending the Vancouver School of Art, - had recently graduated - and recently wed. We ran into them on the street while we were on our honeymoon in Vancouver. They soon moved back to the Okanagan and for a few years we lived within a stone's throw of each other. Well, a stone's throw if you had a strong arm.

They were friends who influenced us in many ways, - awakening an appreciation for colours and textures and music and art. And architecture. George designed our farm house, and although we only had the money to build half of it at first, eventually we added the spacious living room and four bedrooms.

Happy years, and our first dinner party is a treasured memory.

For more remembrances this Whensday click here, and many thanks to Sally for hosting this meme.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Remember Whensday

A picture of my grandmother, my father, two aunts and a great aunt, out picking berries in the woods in Ontario.

Will they make jam or jelly, and will they save enough to make pies?

My grandmother was a great pie maker, - she operated out of a tiny pantry with a pull down table for baking, but the pies and cookies and doughnuts she produced were heavenly.

I was making apple pies the other day, and as I invariably do, I thought about her as I mixed the pastry, - how amused she was that I used a pastry cutter for incorporating the lard into the flour. I still use a cutter, but I also understand the ease and the good feeling of sifting the flour and the lard through one's fingers.

I really treasure this picture of my grandmother, - she has such a lovely, happy glint in her eye.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Remember Whensday

A Romantic Wedding

The date and the gladioli blooming in the garden, bring to mind my sister's wedding in August, 1951, - a fond recollection and a reminder of what weddings were in that time and space.

The invitation arrived and plans were made to travel. A neighbour drove us to Vancouver, - me and three small children. One a crawler and the other two to be part of the wedding party. We board the train and started our journey in a spacious compartment. (Fares were not then what they are now!!!) An exciting trip for the children, and somewhat exciting for me, too....

We arrived!

The Wedding Day arrived!

The tartan ribbon and the heather from Scotland that marked the guest pews arrived on the day of the wedding, courtesy of a kind postman who made a special delivery when they missed the regular post. The bride tucks a bit of heather into her bouquet, and the groom into his cap.

The apartment is electric with last minute excitement and preparations. My sister seems calm on the outside, but on the way to the wedding she sings in the taxi "And the horse told me" from the Bing Crosby film, Riding High.

The owner told Clarence the clocker
The Clocker told jockey McGee
The jockey,of course
Passed it on to the horse
And the horse told me.

Did the Groom observe tradition and not see the bride on their wedding day before she came up the aisle? I can't remember... The Groom is a Piper, and he heads the young Pipe Band, all of whom will be in attendance at this romantic Scottish wedding. He rustles up a small kilt for my son (5) to wear as he bears the ring!

The Bride, with her gorgeous bouquet of Gladioli.

We all set off for the church, except for the dear little 'crawler' who slept peacefully through all the festivities at home with a sitter, dreaming the dreams of the innocent.

Our father is at the Lynch Gate to escort the Bride into the church.

The other bridesmaids were good sports about helping with the smaller members of the wedding party and somehow we all got up the aisle, although the flower girl (2 1/4) abandoned her place at the steps to the altar to go and sit on Grandma's knee!

The Rector, the Rev. Nainby, officiated. The organist played beautifully.

It came time to sign the register

And then the grand Recessional, and the Bride and Groom left the church under a pathway of crossed Pipes, and to the lilt of a Scottish wedding tune in their honour.

A lovely reception, - pictures of the wedding party and the parents, who probably sighed in relief that all had gone well and that our parents in particular would soon have peace and quiet! Our mother was operating from a wheel chair, and she did it with grace and her usual serene fortitude.

And the beautiful Bride and the handsome Groom

The years go by. Times change. But the memory of a lovely traditional wedding stays with you always. All the excitement, all the love - it lives forever.

For other interesting remembrances click here to go to Remember Whensdays.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Alas, I cannot guarantee that all my recollections will be perfectly recalled, or that they will correspond in every small detail with the recollections of others, dear to me.

But I did want somewhere to 'remember when', and so here is a new spot to post my personal memories, the things that have been passed on to me, and the memories of others who share with me a sweet and common heritage.

The heading picture was taken on my great-grandfather's porch shortly before my grandparents left Ontario for the West. Clustered on the porch is a great aunt and her little one, my grandparents, my father, an aunt and an uncle. My great grandfather occupies the rocker, - the handsome fellow leaning nonchalantly against the post is another uncle, and to the far right my two aunts who died in the 1918 flu epidemic.

If this was a farewell visit I can imagine the poignancy of saying goodbye.

I don't know exactly the relationship of the two young girls sitting on the steps, but the most interesting thing about the girl who sits on the bottom step is that she looks exactly like our granddaughter, born almost a hundred years later.

Our lives are all woven together, and the pattern repeats itself randomly to add richness to the tapestry.