Monday, January 18, 2021

Grace Pierce's Diary, September 1928

Aunt Anita, Grandma Grace, Doris... my mother

Sept 1, Sat.

A nice day but looked like rain for a while. The threshing machine got here about ten. Anita and I went to Canton early and got meat and other things. Luella and kids came about 10. I never saw a hungrier bunch than we fed at noon. After dinner Luella and Anita went to Prosper after the baby’s high chair that she sent for and then to Canton after meat for supper. Alice came to Luella’s so she went home before the men were through. We got our work done about 8-30 and were so tired we went to bed as soon as possible.

Sept 2, Sun.

Nice today and we worked all forenoon as hard as we do any day. I even had to do a small washing of towels and baby’s clothes and made a batch of fried cakes. After noon Luella came over and I went over to Lon Pierce’s with her but they were not there so we went down by Alf Rilling’s and Emmet Knox’s and home. Elmer went to ball game over on Raymond’s flat. Pretty cool today.

Sept 3, Mon.

Quite cool, but a lovely day. Anita had to go to Canton early for meat for threshers. They started early and finished before eleven. We had dinner ready for them. We had 1800 bushels of oats and wheat and would weigh up 67 bushels to the acre. Luella came over about 8-30 and helped until nearly one. We took Marilyn down to Violet’s and weighed her and she weighs 16 ¾ lbs. School started today with Grace Knox as teacher. No mail today as it is Labor Day. Elmer went to Burr Oak in eve and brought home ice cream but I was in bed… but Anita brought it in to me.

Sept 4, Tues.

Beautiful day. We got up long before daylight. Elmer threshed at Claude Mitsons. We washed and had a big one and Luella came after me and I went to Decorah with her. We went down to see Lillie and I took her cream and jello. Her baby has gained some since I saw it last. We got home before noon and ironed some and then Anita and I went to B.O. She took some eggs and got 31cts for them. After we got back I mowed the lawn. Elmer came home about 4-30 and took feed to B.O. to be ground.

Sept 5, Wed.

Very nice day. I made 7qts of cucumber pickles and Anita mopped and cleaned the house. We went over to Luella’s and helped get things ready for threshers. Anita and I drove over to B.O. after bread and Anita came home. Elmer threshed at Guys and they finished for the year. I rode home in evening with Mildred and Alice. They threshed until 7-30 to finish. I was as tired as a dog and didn’t help wash the dishes either. Jennie Sanaker was married today.

Sept 6, Thurs.

Oh such a grand day. We were all tired this morning and didn’t get up as early as usual. I cut out the apron for Ladies Aid. LuVerne was here all day. There wasn’t any school on account of Institute. Elmer dug the early potatoes and LuVerne picked them up and then he and Elmer took a grist to Canton & Anita & I went over to Allie Wards so she could find a pattern for a dress. In eve after the milking was done Anita & I went to Canton after the grist & stopped at Franks a minute & drove in to Claude Mitsons after Elmers rubbers. LuVerne rode home with Elmer when he went to B.O. after we got home.

Sept 7, Fri.

As nice as ever but a little warmer. Elmer took the car over town and had a tire fixed in forenoon. We had an early dinner and Anita & I went to Decorah. They were having a shower for Lillie but we didn’t know anything about it so didn’t stay very long. We took the dress & skirt down that Anita & Luella gave her and took cream, and apples from Luella’s. In eve LuVerne, Elmer, Anita & I & Marilyn went to a weiner roast at Louie’s. We didn’t stay very late but had a good time and lots of weiners, buns, pickles, cookies & coffee.  Anita gave me a nice pair of gloves for a birthday present.

Sept 8, Sat.

Very warm day. We washed a few things & Anita cleaned up all the rooms. LuVerne went home early. Luella came over after a can of soft water. We got a long letter from Hazel & Doris & got some pictures that Anita took with her camera. Elmer went to town in eve. Frank Wickett was here & bought 5 cows & 9 old sows.

Sept 9, Sun.

A nice day but very windy. Elmer took a bushel of potatoes to Fred Scholey. I picked & dressed a chicken & we had creamed chicken and ice cream and we nearly died trying to get the qt of ice cream down. After dinner Anita, Marilyn & I went over to Howard for a little while.  We picked up a bushel of plums in forenoon.

Sept. 10, Mon.

A little cloudy in morning & after 10-30 it rained by spells all day. We washed and had a time getting the clothes dry. Two trucks came after the cows and hogs, the cows brought $360 & hogs $240. In afternoon we went over to Luella’s & got apples & took her over some plums. I preserved 9qt of plums and peeled & canned 2qt.

Sept. 11, Tues.

My 53rd birthday and felt as spry as a cricket. Cloudy nearly all day but didn’t rain. I canned plums & 2qt of Whitneys and made plum & apple jelly. In forenoon we took Elmer down to Charlie Weldons to get one of his horses out of the pasture. We finished the ironing. I baked bread & made out buns to bake in morning. Fern, Howard & Beverly came over after plums. Elmer went to B.O. in eve.  Raymonds paid me $20 on Int. & they had paid $5 before so it is paid up.

Sept 12, Wed.

Cloudy nearly all day. Cecil Wicks was here helping cut corn all day. Claude Mitson brought the silo filler down. Elmer went to Leistikows & to B.O. to call help to fill silo. Little Marilyn is sitting on the table tearing paper & is too cute for anything. I picked up about ½ bu of plums & canned 6qt more. Elmer gave me a check for $121.20 my share after the notes were paid for sheep and other things. Luella gave me a nice pair of silk stockings for my birthday.

Sept 13, Thurs.

Very nice day until 5-30 it commenced to rain & kept it up all night & was a terrible rain & such awful lightning & thunder that we couldn’t sleep half the night. In morning Anita and I went to Canton after meat as we are to fill silo today. She got her hair cut too & we got nearly to Luella’s coming home & she found she had left a box of groceries at the Farmers store so we had to go back & when we got here it was nearly nine & had to stew pumpkin & make pies & apple pies & cake. So we hustled all forenoon & everything went wrong. They finished filling about 3 & Cecil, Elmer & Raymond went to Decorah to ball game. Add & Claude were here after plums. Luella was here about ½ hr. I was sick with stomach ache all night.

Sept 14, Fri.

Oh such a rainy morning & I hope we don’t have another night like last night. Anita is 25 today & she & Luella went to Ruth Paddens to Club. Anita started over to Luella’s & couldn’t cross the bridge, it was washed out, so she backed up to Mileys & called Luella from there & she came down & they went the south road. Elmer went with Cecil to a sale out near Cresco. Claude Mitson was here in afternoon a few minutes.

Sept 15, Sat.

A lovely day. We did housework all forenoon. I washed clothes & Anita cleaned the house. They finished filling the silo in afternoon. Anita & I went to Burr Oak to a food sale by Ladies Aid. I took a pumpkin pie & Anita bought a cake. She helped Elmer pick up a load of corn & then we went up to Jim’s after tomatoes. I am not eating much now on account of my stomach & don’t dare taste of a tomato. Elmer went to B.O. tonight. Anita sold 6 doz eggs at 31cts. 

Sept 16, Sun.

Very windy and cooler but nice & bright. I canned 3qt of tomatoes. Eda tried to call us to see if we wanted to go to church with them but the blamed old phone never rang at all & I wanted to go too. About 3 Anita & I went up to Guys for an hour. Vera & Clarence & Lyle & Sena & Pat Gallaghers were there. Yes & Jack was there too. And so was Doris Farmer. A lovely evening, too nice to stay at home. 

Sept 17, Mon.

One of the most beautiful days we have had for three months. We got an early start with the washing & got through at 9-20 & had a big one too. Elmer went up to Guys after barley. We got a letter from Doris & Marion is quite sick with kidney trouble. After noon Raymonds & all of us went up in Halvorson’s woods after walnuts. They hadn’t fallen yet but we got 3 sacks of them. I made plum preserves after we got home & Anita ironed in eve. Elmer went to B.O.

Sept 18, Tues.

Another day as nice as yesterday and warmer. Elmer went up to Howards to cut corn. We did the ironing & then went to Decorah. We took plums & cream to Ericksons and ate our dinner at Emma Lowers cafĂ©. Anita got a very pretty hat but I think I’ll wear my old one. We got home about 8 & Luella was here a few minutes. We went up after Elmer about 5-30. Canned a few tomatoes in eve.

Sept 19, Wed.

Very nice day but cool wind. We got up very early and Anita & Elmer picked a load of corn.  We took Elmer up to Howards & they just got up from the breakfast table. We drove to B.O. after pepper & glass cans. Marilyn was very fretful all day and wouldn’t sleep but little while at a time. We canned tomatoes & made catsup. I mowed the lawn and it looks very nice. It is so thick now. Anita got her dress goods at last. Also babys shoes. Got a letter from Doris and Hazel.

Sept 20, Thurs.

Rather cloudy & sprinkled by spells but didn’t rain. I canned tomatoes & made catchup & baked a pie & Anita cleaned the house. About 4 oclock I went to Ladies Aid at Alice Prices with Jim & Eda. I paid the last half of taxes $41.22. Elmer helped fill silo at Howards. He went to B.O. in eve.  Marilyn was in the swing on the porch & the screw came out that holds it & she fell to the floor right on her face. We thought she was killed but didn’t hurt her at all only a bump on her forehead & a red mark on her nose.

Sept 21, Fri.

A lovely day but it rained in the night. We got up early & I had the washing done before nine oclock. I had made ice box cookies too. I had them stirred up at 5-30 & I made a pie for dinner. Elmer was digging potatoes & Anita helped pick up. Luella & Roger walked over & stayed all afternoon and we took them home about 4. I picked & dressed & cooked two chickens to take to Doris & canned 7qt of tomatoes & made catsup & we ironed & Anita mopped after supper & helped unload potatoes so it was after 9 before we were through. LuVerne stayed here all night. We were about all in when we finally got to bed.

Sept 22, Sat.

We got up bright & early and kept on the run until we started to Canton & took the bus for Rochester. We left Canton a little after 8 & had a very nice ride to Rochester but from there on we rode 10 in a 7 passenger bus & had to transfer from St. Paul to Minneapolis and they piled our suit cases on top of us then. Emil was at the depot to meet us & we stopped at John Newhouse’s a few minutes & then came on to Isle. It was very cold & we wished we had worn our winter coats. We got to Isle about 6-30 & were nearly starved.

Sept 23, Sun. – Isle, MN

Colder than Greenland. Just after dinner Anita, Marilyn & I walked down to the lake. It was snowing a little & the wind was so cold we had to come back. All the kids went to sleep in the afternoon & after they woke up we went for a ride up to Sunset Bay & to Opstead. It snowed quite hard on the way up. Anita wore Emil’s sheep lined coat.  At home: we had our first frost, it was a hard one too.

Sept 24, Mon. – Isle, MN

Just as cold as ever & I guess a little worse. Doris washed & had a big washing. She mopped floors & Anita & I ironed some & I peeled & canned a few qt of tomatoes. I carried two pails of water from the pump up at the corner. Marion was quite fretful all day, & didn’t sleep at all in forenoon. Margarette is too cute for anything & talked every thing.

Marion, Margaret & Marilyn... on the farm, several years later

Sept 25, Tues. – Isle, MN

Cold in morning, but nice and warm in afternoon. We canned 7 ½ qt of peaches & ironed. Anita, Margarette & I went down town in forenoon. Anita went down to the lake & took pictures. After school we all went for a ride. In eve Emil & Doris went to the show and I took care of the kids. Margarette was very restless all night and cried so we took her in bed with us. We found out in the morning why she was so restless. Poor little tot.

Sept 26, Wed. – Isle, MN

Another beautiful day. We did a little washing of our own and I went up town & got the mail & some other things. We got a letter from Luella & she wrote that Glen Reed went away & left Ella & baby. He sold some cattle & skipped out with the money. After school we all went over to Russells bridge to fish but it was so cold Doris brought Anita & I & the kids back & she & Emil came soon after. He caught three & they were very good.

Sept 27, Thurs.

A lovely day. We took the bus from Isle at 7-30 & got to Minneapolis at 11-15 & went to the Woolworth store & then had lunch & waited until 2 & got on the bus for Rochester & got there at 6-15 & left at 6-30 & got to Canton about 8-15 or a little later. Elmer was there so we came right home. It was a lovely moonlight night & we didn’t get a bit cold until we rode home from Canton. LuVerne & Mr. Butler were here & had a good hot fire.

Sept 28, Fri.

Cloudy all day & sprinkled at times. We got up real early & took Elmer to Howards to cut corn. Lloyd Baker was here picking up corn all day. I made 3 gallon of kraut this afternoon. Elmer went to Dell McMullens after a sheep in eve. It weighed 145 lbs & then Anita & Elmer went to a weiner roast at Louie Underbakke’s given by the Club. There was a very small crowd there.  Marilyn was asleep so I kept her.

Sept 29, Sat.

Very cloudy and damp all day. LuVerne was here an hour or two to help Elmer with something. Elmer & Raymond went to a sale at Alva Steads. Elmer bought a bull. Luella & kids & Anita & I went to Willie Welches after walnuts but only got two sacks of them. We stopped at B.O. & I bought a cake at the food sale for 60cts. It was one Elsie made. In eve we went over to Luella’s when Elmer went to B.O. Luella was over at Hogsdon’s after eggs & the car stopped & she couldn’t get it started.

Sept 30, Sun.

Very damp and foggy in morning but cleared off and was so warm & windy. Anita, baby & Elmer went down to Merles & got apples in forenoon & in afternoon Anita, Elmer, Marilyn & I went over to Willie Welches again & got 3 ½ sacks of walnuts so we have 6 ½ sacks of them now. And that is all we will try to get. Raymond got his car fixed this afternoon. Glen, Florence & Norman were here while we were gone.

Thursday, January 7, 2021

Good Gifts

Dear Friends:

Although the 12 Days of Christmas have just ended, still each day comes to us as a gift. 

Ornament carved by my brother, Paul Evenson, as he learned to carve acanthus leaves.

Scripture tells us that  "Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above." James 1:17  And although today comes with heavy weight attached to it, still I receive it with open hands. I feel subdued and confused, in need of quiet time...but still able to turn to God. I am thankful for those gifts.

Heart with quilt design from my sister-in-law, Cheryl

I often read The Writer's Almanac, and there I noticed this quote on Christmas and kept it for consideration. It speaks to me today...

The novelist Oren Arnold (books by this author) had the following Christmas gift suggestions: "To your enemy, forgiveness. To an opponent, tolerance. To a friend, your heart. To a customer, service. To all, charity. To every child, a good example. To yourself, respect."

All of the above are good gifts, and like today, they all challenge me. May they challenge you also.

Some of my favorite music to lighten the day:

I wish you good gifts.  -Karen