Wednesday, February 27, 2013

This starts you on the 41st year, doesn't it

Leora, Gene, Dick, Betty & Ricky
February 8, 1961 (Wednesday PM)

Dear Gene,

You're coming up for another birthday and I'm sending a reminder so you won't forget it. But after my next birthday, think I'm going to forget all about the next coming years. Let's see, this starts you on the 41st year, doesn't it, since your arrival in the United States of America. My ancestors migrating to this continent, the English, Scotch-Irish and maybe a little Dutch, anyway the Quakers and some of the German Fasts and the Scotch-Irish Calhouns on Dad's ancestry has made you a genuine United States of America citizen. So they helped back in the founding of this great nation to give us freedom to worship and to live in peace with one another.

I hope we can prove ourselves deserving of all this and to keep our country free in this respect. You arrived on my grandmother's birthday and barely missed coming in on Grandma Fast's birthday (Dad's mother.) She almost reached her 100th birthday, probably would have if she hadn't tried to fix the window curtain, causing her to fall and break her hip. The shock was too much.

So take it easy when you begin to climb up in your later years, and I should take the same advice I suppose for I do quite a bit of climbing and reaching to fix things and to get down some of my belongings. I've always been active. There is an article in the January 1961 Era everyone should read titled, "I sold my Car and Took to My Feet." Well, I never had a car to sell, but I have certainly practiced what this writer tells us, and I bet I've done more walking than she has done so far. And I still walk plenty, but my foot has given me plenty of trouble in these later years and I can't take the walking too long at a time anymore. But I think I walk more than any other woman in our ward. Really get pretty tired and by bedtime, I'm ready to get my feet up to rest. But she is right, we do enjoy more of scenery and what goes on as we walk along. . . .

Yes, I read Hope's story. It was very good too. I think the articles they put in the first pages of the Relief Society Magazine are so very good and very instructive. We all can benefit by reading them. . . . Hope Linda didn't get bored with my letter. I know how she feels. She's at that in-between age. Hope she and Marian can keep up their music. One of the girls should be a singer and the other one accompany her like Aunt Minnie and I only I'd liked to have learned to play also.

I think Ricky is at the age where he gets bored. He seemed very quiet while here. He is such a good person, and those children's lives have been so disturbed in their short years about like mine was when my parents died. Wish they didn't live so far away. I missed my grandma a lot too. She was such a wonderful, good, spiritual person and went through trying pioneering days as a widow, losing so many of her children--all but one died before she passed on.

Well, I intended to close this reminiscing. Won't seem much like a birthday letter to you. Must go and drop this now. It's 5:30 PM. "Happy birthday to you. . ." Love, Mother [Leora]

April 25, 1961

Dear Perry & family,

We just got back from the doctor. A week from today, May 2nd, he says he will do the job for keeps and what a relief that will be for Mother. [To help with the painful neuralgia in Leona's face, the doctor severed a facial nerve in that area.] We saw a lady who had the same trouble for ten years. She had the alcohol injection four different times and then a month ago, Dr. Wright severed the nerve and she just feels fine. She says, "I only wish I had him do it ten years ago."

Dr. Wright told us to wait till next week to make arrangements, but we felt it would be better to do that now, so he got on the phone and that was the earliest date he could make. So Perry, by your birthday your sweet little mother will be home and can write you a nice birthday letter. Love, Father [Elmer]

Pa says he will phone you after the operation. I feel like I will make it all right, but you and your family continue to pray for me that everything will work out all right. I am sure the Lord has blessed me this far. Love, Mother [Leona]

Front row: Genevieve, Leona & Hazel
Back row: Perry, June, Venice & Hope
May 23, 1961

Dear Perry & all,

This is my first day home alone. Genevieve stayed with me until last Thursday night. Pa had his "day off" Friday, and June came and took me out to her place Saturday and yesterday. Everybody has sure been good and thoughtful.

I still don't get around too well, but I cling to a chair, etc. to help me walk. It seems like my head wants to "wobble," and I get a little dizzy. But I am making it fine, if a little slowly. I guess I will just have to remember I am not so young anymore. I promised Elmer I would be real careful and not fall.

It is a beautiful time of year--the shrubs in bloom, the iris so pretty and the grass so green. There was some rain while we were in California, but the future looks like there will be drought. I am glad we took our trip when we did. That was a lovely trip, and to see all of you, and think of all the pleasant things and funny things the children said still makes me smile. The flowers you sent were so beautiful.

I got quite a few "get well" and "Mother's Day" cards, but I really was surprised to get a card from Clyde [Wahlquest] and Helen. He doesn't know I have been in the hospital, but he sent it for Mother's Day, saying I had always been like a mother to him. Imagine! I must write him a thank you note as soon as I can.

I have had some trouble hearing since the operation. My right ear was my best one, and I couldn't hear anything out of that. I complained quite a bit to everybody, the doctor included. He said there couldn't be any possible damage permanently to the ear through the operation. He said, though, "It is just possible that a little blood or water got in because of having to work so close to it." The wound is about four inches long, a little in front of and above the ear. So June and Genevieve took me up to his office last Thursday, and he got out quite a bit of something--made it bleed. Then he stuffed it full of medication of some sort, so I still can't hear. It is awful annoying. I have to go back Thursday.

June said the day I was operated on, in the afternoon, she and Pa were there, and I guess I was still groggy. I said, "I can't understand it, they must have cut off my ear, for I can't hear a thing!" Just shows what foolish things can go through one's head.

I am glad you can have an extra few weeks of teaching, for the sake of income. Hazel is going to teach kindergarten to help pay for her car. Well, this is quite an accomplishment for me. I will go and rest. Love to all, Mother & Dad

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