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Friday, October 4, 2013

Momma's Table

Momma dressed to the nines, 1951, Neeley place.
My Mom has always appreciated nice things.  Of course the term 'nice things' meant a different level of nice to this dirt farmer's daughter.  A child in the Great Depression and a bride at 15 (is that even legal) to another dirt farmer's son puts a different set of weights on the scale of nice.  Like we all, dang that is a nice sounding Southern expression meaning the entire group/unit/family, were thrilled in 1957 to get running water to the kitchen sink!  A hot water heater meant no more heating water in kettles for our baths in the # 3 wash tub.  Later we were some of the most fortunate folks when my BIL's folks put in indoor plumbing.  They gave us a full sized galvanized bath tub!  Daddy bathed with his legs inside the tub for the first time ever in his own home.  You get the idea now, I am sure.

The first table I remember in my Mom's home was the white kitchen table and four matching chairs.  There was a little red accent strip on the routed feature at the foot of the table and chair legs.  Never really saw the top of the table without an oil cloth table cover on it.  The table, also, doubled as work space.  Many farm homes had no kitchen cabinets to speak of, just a Hoosier style free standing unit.  The kitchen table, therefore, had to be used as a work space.

Aunt Billie in curlers with Momma's back as she works on Christmas morning
breakfast at the white kitchen table, Farnsworth place

The next table I remember in my Momma's home was the dining table.  This 'grand' table was purchased when we moved into the larger Farnsworth's place.  This table was never used as a work space.  It was the dining room table, even though the actual dining room was sometimes the north west room and sometimes the fireplace room.  Mom told my sister recently that as farm folk, redecorating meant just rearranging what you had.  Guess that explains my memories of rooms having 'floating identities', bedroom one year, dining room the next or let's try a bed in the living room.

Dining table decked for Christmas.  In the northwest, Farnsworth place.
In 1961 Momma and Daddy purchased their one and only home in Allen, TX.  It was a very modest home by current McMansion standards, only around 1100 sq. ft.  It had lots of indoor plumbing:  a double sink in the kitchen with that spray thing, washer and dryer connections in a utility room off the garage and Thank you, Jesus, 2 toilets! ! !  The house was all brick with hardwood floors and a double garage.  Talk about moving on up to a deluxe place, friends, we were walking in tall cotton! 

And a new table.  Solid maple.  Drop leaf.  Matching captains and mate chairs.  Used but none the less Mom's pride and joy.  The white table and dining table disappeared but the four white chairs remained along the garage wall for use when company came.  And for the record we seldom saw the top of that table as old habits die hard. 

My Dad in my Sissy's wig at the maple table, Allen, TX.

My Dad and my Son at same table, 1975.

Table at Christmas time, mid 1980's.

My niece using the table as a work space, late 1980's
Today I will call to check on the status of the maple drop leaf table.  It is being refinished as the oil cloth and blanket pad did not completely protect the finish.  That table will reappear in our new loft apartment as our dining table.  Cause you see, every thing old is new again.

For more new again stories, please, hitch up your wagon and head on over to The Spin Cycle.

Second Blooming

Momma and her table, circa early 1970's.

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