Saturday, January 29, 2022

Happy Birthday, Mom.

It’s my Mom’s birthday. She’d a been 98 today. Born in 1924, she grew up during the Great Depression of the 1930s. This morning I read a few chapters from her 1990 memoir. 

Mom was a late arrival to the Larson family. Her Mother Edna was 44, and her Father Harvey was 50 when Mary Lee Larson was born. Their home was in Hillyard, Spokane. Grandpa was a cabinet maker for the Great Northern Railroad and he was one of the few that was gainfully employed during the depression.

In one chapter of her memoir, Mom talks about their daily life and routine. They had a wood and coal stove and none of the conveniences we assume today as necessary. Pretty much everything was done from scratch by hand like the Sunday chicken dinner. Grandma ran the house, Grandpa worked and took care of the yard, garden, chopped wood for the stove, and tended Edna's flower garden. I was moved to tears reading how affectionate they were and that Harvey and Edna had such a loving partnership. 

To think in the 1930s this was before wall to wall carpets, vacuum cleaners, central heating, all rooms well lit, tv, computers, and the internet. Hot water for Saturday’s bath was from the side tank on the kitchen stove. They had a regimen, everyone their turn, and Grandpa was last and hopefully before dark because there was no light in the bathroom. 

We moved from the Highlands to Earlington in 1957. This is when my childhood memories really kick in. Mom was a great homemaker, an extremely energetic progressive, and a task master. My brothers and I all had our chores to do. She often quoted her sister Mildred. 

 “Many hands make the task small.”

Mom was always a voracious reader, she loved going to plays and musicals and volunteering for many causes around town. She enjoyed music, making clothes, art, entertaining, being social, Erma Bombeck, JFK, Emmet Watson of the Seattle Times, and happy hour. 

Bless you Mom and thank you! I'm eternally grateful.
The Larson's, Edna, Harvey, Mildred, Marjorie, and Mary Lee

Photo from 1961. It’s Harvey and Edna’s 60th wedding anniversary. They were engaged in 1898 and married in 1901. 

#Family #FamilyHistory #HappyBirthdayMom #RentonWA #mypnwlife #ilovelocal #Spokane #Hillyard #pnwhistory

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