Mama and me.

Mama and me.

Giving Mama a bath.

I grew up in a time when many people had indoor plumbing and good heating systems, and well insulated houses. We were not one of those people. Our house sat up off the ground a good way, and there was no underpinning. The wind would come whistling under the house and the linoleum would rise up off the floor. We lived in one room, the kitchen. That was all we could keep warm.

Going to bed in the unheated bedrooms was an event. My dear sweet Mother would get me into flannel pajamas and socks on my feet, maybe something on my head if it was really bad. Then Mom would get a blanket and hold it close to the heating stove to get it as warm as possibly. She would go into the cold bedroom and take the covers down and have the warmed blanket ready, and she would call out "Okay Freda. Come on!" I would come running and she would wrap me up in the warm blanket. Boy, that felt good.

The restroom was about 20 yds. outback. Enough said about that! There might be children listening.

We had running water. You went on the back porch and pumped a handle up and down and the water run out. Now when it was COLD, you had to pull the prime at nights and then the next morning you had to pour warm water (not to hot) into the pump and get it going again. The water we had in the house for the night had also frozen and you would put it on the stove to thaw it out. Well of course the fire was out. So Mom would put in kindling and get the fire going and then add coal. Somtimes our kindling was corncobs my Grandfather John Vaughn had picked up at the grain elevator. In those days they just shot them out onto a huge pile. They were not used as they are today. Mom would call me when the kitchen got warm. So you can see,I had a Saint for a Mother.

Knowing I have a Saint for a mother. It makes you wonder why I would do what I am about to confess to you. One really cold night. Snow deep on the ground, wind howling, We were in our cozy kitchen. My sister Deanie was there to witness the proceedings. We all heard a noise on the back porch! A dog getting to the garbage can! "What a mess that would be if I don't scare him off."' says my Mom. She picks up a broom and heads for the door. Now, Mom had been defrosting the refrigerator's freezer that night. I spy that dishpan, brimming with ice water and floating ice. Man wouldn't it be neat to throw that ice water on that dog. I always was an animal lover. I picked up the devilish cold pan of water and head for the backdoor. Mom was already there. I did not want that dog to run away before I could deliver my weapon of misery. She was in my way! Oh but there was a space between her head and the door frame. I threw my water at the small target. I felt confindent that dog would never return for more of the punishment I dealt to him. I think Mom must have moved or made a mistake of some sort, because the water hit her right in the back. It soaked her inside and out. I will never forget the look on her face as she slowly turned around.(she couldn't move fast it seemed.) She looked at me with the telltale pan in my hands. If only I could have thrust the pan into Deanie's hands. All I remember her Saying was " Well Freda". Of course later she did have some questions. But you are not interested in that. But that is how to give your Mother a bath.

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