Daddy's latest pic: We thank him for the memoirs!

Several years ago, God gave me the vision to save some of the memoirs Daddy posted when he was still sending family email.  This reflection (Daddy’s) recalls a stomach virus at Christmas that ravaged the family before I was a member of it way back in Mississippi (late 40’s, early 50’s).  Daddy’s writing is original and unedited–pristine expression!

Daddy’s Mississippi Country Christmas

Last night I shared with you  one of the best Christmas experiences.

As I thought about that this morning I was also reminded of  one of the worst

Christmas experiences.   This one took place  the first Christmas we  were

living  next to Mt.Pisgah Baptist church in that little four room tenant

farmer’s house  with four rooms and a fire place for heat.

The house had been  vacanrt for several years when I asked the owner

if we might be  able to use it  when we moved  away from Clarke.    I was to

graduate from clark  in  the middle of January and I did not want to

continue  in school . Again we did not go home for Christmas because of

shortage of travel money,ut we did spend a few days at the church  and had a

couple of work days on the house.

The ladies worked insid the house with Mama.  When some of them say the

wide gaping holes in the outside walls they suggestthat they get some of that

extra heavy wall paper to be  hide the cracks  as well as give the inside of

the house a better appearance.

The men work on the outside with me. There was lots of trash  to be

moved and weeds to be cut.  also since the only heat foir the house ws the

fireplace they  also cut down some trees  for firewood.

This was the huse that had no well  for water  nor toilet  for taking

care of those other needs.  There was no outhouse but plenty of hiding places

on the edge of the yard.  After we moved in I built my first outhouse, it was

a one e=seater.

I received my diploma from Clarke  about ten oclock that morning and

two men from  Blythe Creek church came down to move us in their large truck.

That was a ninety-five mile trip each way.  By lunch time we were on the road

. By night fall our furnituer was unloaded and we spent our first night  in

the country.

With that  background now I move on to  the  next Christmas.  This was

a big deal for  Janice and Buster.  Janice was old eto really be interested

in Christmas  and Buster  was over two years old  and he,too was interestred

.  The three of us went out into the woods  to cut our first  Christmas tree.

When we got it home we began trying to decorate the thing,but how do you

decorate a Christmas tree when you have nothing  with which to decorate it.?

Well, I don’t remember what we did for decorations but at lest we did have a

Christmas tree over there in one corner of the bedroom and  a couple of times

the mailman droped  large packages off  and the smaller packages within the

larger packages were spread out around that trree and we had a real Christmas

tree.   Talk about suspense!  This thing Buster is holding over our heads  is

nothing  compared to the suspense and anxiety  in the hearts and lives of two

small children.

The weather was about what you would expect  at that time of the

year.  It was cold and the fire in that fire place  was all we had for the

cold.  But we did have a feather bed  for our two little ones to sleep in.  I

would  heat two large stones in the fireplace  and a few minutes before we

put Janice and Buster into the bed I would put those hot stones in the bed to

warm it for them . The feathers were so deep in this thing  that when  Janice

and Buster were lying in the bed all you could see was the covers ,smoothly

spread over the two occupants.  They were actually buried in those warmed


Christmas morning  was somewhat  disappointing.  Something was

wrong. The excitement that had been building up for the last couple of weeks

and had about climaxed the night before  was gone.  Mama and I were sluggish.

Janice and Buster were the same.  The Christmas tree and all of its packages

did not seem to really exist.

Finally ,as though you were pulling teeth,packages were  being

opened.  I don’t re,e,ber what SantaClause had left for Janice but Bustr’s

Mawmaw  had not forgotten  her two year old grandson nd sent him a real

electric train.  I put the thing together but there was no enthusiasm.

Actually it was just as if there were no  electric train there. I put it all

up.    Later in the day I again tried to get some interest in the train and

other things that had been hiding in those packages under the tree but to no

avail.  It was a tough Christmas Day  the four  people,two adults and two

small children, had picked up the bug and it turned what was supposed to be

and exciting happy day,into a day of gloom.

Undoubtedly that was about one of the most disappointing

Christmas’sI hav e ever had.

The moralk of this story is ”  Stay away from anyone who has the bug

from now until  after January 1.