Memories are truly Golden

A number of years ago I had given a book to my Grandmother called “Grandma Tell Me Your Memories…” where each page would ask a question with space for her to write a response.  When she moved into the nursing home, she went through her belongings and gave back a number of her processions, as she was limited in space in her new surroundings. I was delighted to get this book back, with many of the pages filled in!  Some of them were left blank, like “Tell about a big fib you told”. But that’s OK. Maybe some things are best kept to oneself.

I thought I would share a few pages from this book that she did give an answer to:

“If you have a childhood picture for me, put it in this space.”

In my day, we never owned a camera. 

“Tell about a favourite Aunt.”

All Aunts were all favourites.

“Tell about a favourite Uncle.”

I liked them all.

“Did you ever have an imaginary friend?”


“When you needed punishment as a child, which parent corrected you?”

Mother, if needed, but I don’t remember ever getting a spanking.  When parents spoke, we were expected to obey.

“What is the biggest problem you remember having in Jr. High school?”

Never got that far. I had to stay home and work, parents could keep the children home if they had a need, so I was needed at home.  We had a sickness
in family so we were taught to work.

“Did you ever pretend to be sick as an excuse to stay home from school?”

I don’t remember, because I liked school, and mother always had a cure for imagining sickness.  That was a dose of castor oil.

“Did you ever go skinny-dipping?”

No never. Not for girls.  Boys would go to a river sometimes.

“Did you ever go barefoot in the summer?”

Oh yes. We could hardly wait for the 24th of May.

“Tell about a bike you had.”

I never had a bike.  Only remember one my brothers had, without a chain on. I took it down the barn bank and fell, and cut my foot, doctored it up myself.  Didn’t want anyone to know that I fell, because I knew I wouldn’t get any sympathy.

“Did you ever have or make a swing?”

Oh yes.  When dad would us have a rope we would tie it to a branch of a tree.  That was our swing.

“Share a birthday party memory.”

In 1915 to 1925 we never had Birthday gifts. Then Barb my oldest sister made me a nice handkerchief and gave it to me for my 10th Birthday.  In the Depression years no one thought of giving gifts.

“Tell about an incident when your mom or dad was very angry with you.”

My Dad 1 time told me to go in the house, after I helped to haul in turnips all day. While unloading the last load, I accidently threw a turnip and hit my brother on the head. Of course he got mad.

“Do you remember having a favourite snack that you made at home?”

Our snacks were usually popcorn and a pail of apples at night. In winter, on Sunday afternoon we would often make a batch of ice cream or a batch of homemade candy.

“Tell about seeing something you thought was very beautiful.”

My Grandmother’s garden, the first time I got to go.  She had a little garden, all done up in little plots for vegetables and all around each little plot was a boarder of flowers. I remember walking in the little paths; I was 4 or 5 years old.  She had a lot of white Lillys.  I can still smell them.  She was a widow and had to make her living by selling flowers and Lilly bulbs.  No such thing as a Pension in her day.

“Tell about who you thought was the dumbest kid in school and why.”

We were taught from home never to judge another person.  It kept us out of a lot of trouble.

These are just a few of the many precious memories my Grandmother shared in this book, which I will always treasure. I am so grateful that she took the time to write down her answers.

I am happy to share that my Grandmother turns 96 today!  I hope she celebrates her day and maybe receives a nice white Lilly to smell.

Maybe someday, she’ll tell me about that big fib.

2 thoughts on “Memories are truly Golden

  1. I loved reading about Grandma’s first experience in her mother’s garden. I have never heard that story. Grandma has taught me a lot about gardening, helping me with one or two at the various houses I have lived in. I just put her Solomon’s Seal into my garden from her garden. I still look for her garden when I drive into New Hamburg, and even though it is no longer there, my memory of seeing her working in her garden will never fade.
    I love you Grandma, you are a blessing to our family.


    • Gail, I think it’s wonderful that you have Grandma’s plant in your garden! So special. I too would still see Grandma outside in her garden when driving by her house, or I would hear her say “just let me off at the ditch! No need to drive in!”


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