Stories from the Stringam Family Ranches of Southern Alberta

From the 50s and 60s to today . . .



All of My Friends

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Oh, Christmas Coat!

Husby is very ill.
A repost from a year ago...
Clockwise from right: Aly (Hired man's son),
Anita, Blair, and Me - in my little gold beauty.
It wasn't often that we kids were able to go on a field trip with my Dad.
When it happened, we were eager.
When it happened at Christmas, we were beyond excited.
Ecstatic.
Exuberant.
Exhilarated.
Elated.
Euphoric.
Electrified.
That's all of the 'E' words I can think of.
Except that 'energetic' should be stuck in there somewhere.
And, for me, usually immediately followed by, "Empty all tanks!"
When I think about it, I guess it's not surprising that we didn't go on field trips with my Dad very often.
Back to my story . . .
Dad was taking us four oldest kids to the Sweetgrass Hills to cut down our family's Christmas tree.
It was the 50's.
Families did things like that back then.
But we had to make a quick stop in Milk River at the Robinson's store to get me a winter coat.
I had outgrown my old one and Dad wasn't excited about trailing me through the forest wrapped in my blanket.
Go figure.
So the excitement level for this trip had just been dialed way up.
In fact, I was so elated, that Dad didn't even wait for the 'announcement' (see above), but sat me in the car with a bucket already in my lap.
Smart man.
We made the 20 miles to Milk River without incident. (see above . . . again.)
And entered the store.
I should explain here that the Robinson's Store was the only shop in Milk River that featured clothing.
There were neat piles of everything wearable.
And the wood plank floors creaked delightfully.
And if you were really lucky, you got to watch Theo Barrows gift wrap packages at her counter in the middle of the store.
The curling of the ribbons was especially fascinating.
Where was I  . . .?
Oh, yes.
New coat.
Dad asked the manager where we could find coats in my size and was conducted, with me tagging eagerly behind, to a rack at one side of the store.
My eyes were immediately drawn to a gold, furry, wonderful garment.
I reached out a hand and brushed the soft fur.
Oooooh!
"This one, Daddy! This one!"
"Okay, we'll try this one," Dad said.
I dropped my blanket and slipped my arms into the sleeves.
Perfect!
"I guess we'll take it," Dad said.
Good thing, too, because there was no way they were ever going to pry me out of that coat.
Dad paid and we trooped back out to the car.
The other kids excited now to get to the real reason for this trip.
Me brushing and brushing the soft fur on my arms and chest.
We had fun finding the tree.
I think.
We did end up with one.
I really don't remember much about it.
Me and my coat were happy, sitting in the car together.
And watching through the windshield.
Because, after all - one couldn't wear one's new coat out into nature!
What if it got soiled?
Dad later said something about 'waste of time and money'.
But who listened?
Later:
Blair (in my now-outgrown coat which he hated), and Anita
The original recycling program




Theo Barrows in Robinsons
Just thought you'd like to see . . .

16 comments:

  1. Healing thoughts headed in your husbys direction. Get well soon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much, Delores! He's home from the hospital, but still in a lot of pain. I was a bit upset that they sent him home. He's scheduled for more testing in the very near future. Another Christmas watching Husby . . .

      Delete
    2. That is SO horrible that they still send people home so soon from the hospital!! When are people going to wake up and see that this is not good. Prayers going your way. For both of you this Christmas. Diane, I know it will be hard, but try and get as much rest as possible yourself. You need to take care of you too. ; ) Hugs!

      Delete
    3. Thanks so much, Lynn! I find it hard to get motivated. All I want to do is sit and watch him.

      Delete
    4. Let someone else do all the fussing for Christmas this year and just look after your sweetie.

      Delete
  2. Another cute memory; I enjoy reading it.
    Blessings!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Those special pieces of clothing from childhood really stay in my memory, too.

    Please know we are thinking of your husby and you, and hoping all goes well and he improves quickly ... why don't you take some time off - we'll be here when you have more time and energy. Take care, Diane.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Jenny! Blogging is a lot of work, but it's definitely the high point of my day when I get to hear from all of my friends!

      Delete
  4. Oh, Diane! So many memories in that story! We used to go up "into the hills" which was pretty much wild territory. Dad would let us choose a cedar tree (one he had been keeping his eye on for a while) and he'd chop it down.
    We rode home in the back of the pick-up truck holding onto our tree. The smell of cedar brings it back.Thank you for sharing that event!

    Loved the coat, and the precious photo of Thea Barrows.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cedar! Oh, I'd have loved that! What precious memories!

      Delete
  5. I'm sending all kinds of healing wishes for Husby, please let him be okay for Christmas. Well, forever really.
    I love the furry gold coat.

    ReplyDelete
  6. This is such a sweet post. Seriously though--don't worry about getting too much stuff done. Just take it easy. I'll be praying for your husband's speedy recovery!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Marcia! That means everything!

      Delete

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