Monday, July 7, 2008

Early Beginnings

I'd like to tell you a little more about my family during the time that I was about 5 and 6 years old. We moved from Knoxville to a place we called 'Possum Valley. It was located in the area known as Concord, TN. When we moved to 'Possum Valley, we moved into a log cabin belonging to my dad's mother. It was a two room cabin, with a loft. Some of my earliest memories come from those years.

The walls of the cabin were papered with old newspapers to keep the cold air out. There were 8 people who lived in that cabin, and sometimes more. (Believe it or not!)

My oldest brother, Bill, got married when we were living in that cabin, and brought his bride, my oldest sister-in-law, Mae, to live there. To say that it was crowded would be an understatement. But we had some wonderful times in that cabin. My mom loved to tell ghost stories to us when the wind would be blowing outside and we would gather around her near the fireplace and plead with her to "tell us another one." Although my brother, Bill, has been gone for 22 years, his wife, Mae, is still with us, and we often talk about those days in 'Possum Valley.

We younger children entertained ourselves by reading the comics that were plastered to the walls. My youngest brother, John, was still in diapers when we moved there.

There were two churches that we lived close to. We would go to Sunday School in one of them, and walk down the road to the other one for Sunday School because they began a little bit after the first one let out. (At least that is what my brother and sister told me). I remember some of the walking but not too much about the sunday school classes.

We walked to school which was called Boyd School and was a one-room schoolhouse, divided by a partition into two classrooms. A lady teacher taught the primer through 3rd grades, and the principal, who was a man, taught the other 5 classes. That was the school that my sister had to repeat 8th grade so that she could watch over me in the primer and first grade. The primer was taught the first half of the year, and then we were promoted to first grade for the second half of the year.

We didn't take our lunch to school, but my mom sent our lunch by my next to oldest brother, Ralph, in a lard bucket. It was always hot, usually beans and cornbread or something like that. My sister, Margaret, my brother, Hugh, and I were the ones that went to school down there. My brother and I talk about it sometimes and laugh about some of the things that happened.

One of the things I remember was one day when it was cold outside, some other kids and I were out by the well house behind the school, and I decided to imitate the principal who had a mustache. I pulled some of the strings out of the top of my tobaggan and had them scrunched up between my upper lip and my nose and was talking like I was him. He came around the corner of the school and said something like "what is going on around here?" Yep, I was being the center of attention and having a blast. But he scared the living daylights out of me for a few minutes. I am afraid I have always been an incorrigable little show-off, never being shy. Must be why I took up storytelling later. I absolutely love meeting people and making new friends.

Another thing I remember was being afraid to go outside to go to the outhouse (outdoor toilet for those of you who are uninitiated) because I could hear a dog barking. I was deathly afraid of dogs, and so I peed in my panties, and had to dry them on the stove that heated the schoolroom.
I learned to read while going to the little one -room school house in 'Possum Valley.

It was a wonderful thing to learn, and I have never regretted learning that skill. I must read 2 or 3 books a week even yet. I don't know what I would do if I ever got to where I could no longer read.

I am posting a school picture of myself and my brother, Hugh, so you can get an idea of what we looked like going to school. I remember when I had my picture made when I was in Primer. I was scared half to death, because it was a new experience for me.
I remember, too, getting my vaccination to go to school. Someone held my face in their bosom while I got my arm scratched with the needle. I think it must have been someone that was assisting the county nurse. I had it done at the school house.

Well, that is about it for today, since I don't want to wear out those who may read my blog. Each memory I write about dislodges other memories, and I just have a difficult time turning it off here. More later.
May each of you have a good evening and may God's grace and love rest on each of you. Farewell for today from Blabbin' Grammy!


Judy said...

Hi Grammy, You still look like that little girl in the picture. I could tell it was you just by looking at the picture of you now on the blog. I love your memories and your stories. Keep them coming!

Cheryl said...

Hi Grammy,
I am a friend of Daniel & Whitney's from Peoria. I was just thinking that you should consider putting your memories into a book (& photos too) You are obviously very computer talented and I know what a treasure something like this can be. They are not expensive (vary in price), but are priceless. I use this site. It's cool can you can "slurp" (whatever that means) your blog right into the book!

Blessings to you! Cheryl Dreyer