Sunday, January 23, 2022

Grace Pierce's Diary, November 1928

Burr Oak Farmhouse (recent)

 Nov 1, Thurs

 Very snowy and snowed nearly all day. Elmer went to Burr Oak & the roads are a fright. I made another outing dress for Marilyn & did fancy work in the evening.

Nov 2, Fri  

The ground is covered with snow & snowed most of the day, but isn't very cold. Elmer went to Prosper & got some coal in the car, & in afternoon he went to Burr Oak after ground feed. Lloyd Knowlton was here and bought the pigs. Anita washed & had quite a time to dry the clothes.

Nov 3, Sat  

Bright and nice but terribly sloppy. Anita washed again for a change. Harold Reed hauled two load of hogs to Prosper for us. Mrs. Evenson called Luelle & said Emil was in Minneapolis with a lot of whitefish and wanted to know if some one could come & get them, but she said Raymond couldn't go so we didn't get any of them.   Sold 30 pigs & 2 old sows at 8-10 and they brought $454.20.

Nov 4, Sun 

Lovely day & mud is drying up some. We sat around all forenoon & went up to Jim's in afternoon. Elmer took us up and then came back home. Raymonds were up to Rupert Grenslades.

Nov 5, Mon

Very windy and cold in morning. Anita washed. Elmer & I went over to Stevies. They had shredders, we went with the Ford through the field. LuVerne came up from school and stayed all night. We got home about seven.

Nov 6, Tues

A lovely day. We cleaned my bedroom & I washed nearly all the curtains. Elmer went down to Merles to help shred. This is election day & I rode over to Raymonds when he came back from the cream route & Luella took me to Burr Oak and we voted for Hoover. Nearly every woman went but Anita & she would if she could have got there. It rained nearly all night. In eve Elmer & Anita & baby went to Prosper to see Lloyd Knowlton.

Nov 7, Wed

Rainy in morning but cleared up toward night. We cleaned the sitting room & put up all the curtains. Merle was here to dinner, he came after a hog. Afternoon Elmer went to Burr Oak and we went over to Raymonds. The roads were a fright. Well Hoover got elected by a big majority.

Nov 8, Thurs

Cloudy all day. We cleaned the pantry & I made a cake & cut out and made another outing dress for Marilyn while Anita did some mopping. Elmer is plowing with Howards tractor.

Nov 9, Fri

Dark and snow flakes fell all day so it was wet and sloppy. Arthur Manning helped stack stalks here. Ed Sharp was here to dinner. Doris called me from Minneapolis & wanted me to come up there tomorrow on the bus & go home with them & come down Thanksgiving, but I couldn't go for I have never got my glasses yet. I went to a party at the M.E. parsonage with Violet & Louis & kids. The roads were very bad and there wasn't many there. It was a pound party but I gave them $1.00.

From left: Anita, Grace, Doris circa 1924

Nov 10, Sat

Very misty in the morning but did get a little better. Arthur Manning was here helping stack corn fodder today. I made another outing dress for the baby Marilyn. In eve Elmer went to Burr Oak after groceries.

Nov 11, Sun

The sun shone at last and the wind blew hard so it dried up some of the mud. We went over to Luella's to dinner & had a very good dinner. Ervin & his father and Ronald were there. It is much colder tonight.

Nov 12, Mon

A beautiful day, and the wind dried the mud up pretty good. We had a big washing, washed dining room & kitchen curtains. Elmer plowed all day with tractor. We thought the mail wouldn't come today but he did. We sent letters to Canton with Louis. Elmer went to Burr Oak after supper.

Nov 13, Tues

Not as nice day as yesterday, very windy. Elmer went to Polletts to shred. We ironed & cleaned dining room. In afternoon I went to Burr Oak with Jim & Eda. We went to see about the Ladies Aid play. Just after I got home, Leonard Bruflodt came with B.O. Marsh's truck and moved our piano over and the other one away, and we are glad too. I paid him $2.00 for moving it.

Nov 14, Wed

Cloudy and sprinkled quite hard at times. I went to Decorah with Jim & Eda we went about 9-30 & I got home at 4 so I had time to look around and do what I wanted to. I paid $165 on note at bank & $12.45 Int. I got new frames for my glasses. Went down to see Lillie. The baby is growing fine & Lillie is getting along real well. Andy Butler was here in afternoon & all night. I got quite a lot of Christmas presents.

Nov 15, Thurs

Beautiful day after the hard wind last night. Anita & I went to George Smiths to Ladies Aid with Jim & Eda & then to Decorah with Luella & Roger. We went at noon & went to see Nettie Sorkness and didn't get home until nearly dark. I don't know when I have been so tired as I was tonight.

Nov 16, Fri

Rained about all night last night and raining all day. Luella came over & I made an apron for her to wear to the dance. LuVerne stayed here all night. Marilyn wasn't very well today.

Nov 17, Sat

Snowing to beat the band. Anita tried to get Dr. Ness on telephone but couldn't get him nor Dr. Lannin so they took Marilyn to Dr. Edwards at Canton. He said she mustn't nurse for a day or two. We kept it from her until night & had to let her have it as she wouldn't eat anything and have to fight to get her medicine down her. Geo Ruddick was hauling hogs for Miley & got stuck & came here to get warmed up.

Nov 18, Sun

Sun shone bright for a few minutes and was cloudy the rest of the day. I was sick as a dog all day, had the real old fashioned "grippe." The ground is covered with snow. Ethel called over in evening & said Mark got a telegram that Ollie passed away yesterday & Steve & Mark were going tomorrow.

Nov 19, Mon

Ground is frozen hard. I feel a little better but far from good. Anita washed. Elmer went to Burr Oak in forenoon & didn't get home until afternoon. I just dumped around all day. Marilyn was quite fretful all day.

Nov 20, Tues

Colder & ground was frozen hard. Still cloudy. Elmer, Anita, Marilyn & I went to Decorah. We started about 10 & got home a little after three. We went down to see Lillie. Elmer got the side curtains on the car fixed. The roads were very good from Frank Perry's down, but quite bad from here to B.O.

Nov 21, Wed

Much warmer & thawed a lot & so terrible muddy. We went up to Mike Blaess' to Ladies Aid & half the folks that drove cars got stuck. I walked up & Anita & Elmer came later, but I rode back. We had a lovely dinner. Luella stopped on way home from Harmony a few minutes. Today is little Margarette's second birthday.

Nov 22, Thurs

Bright but terrible windy. The ground was frozen hard in morning. Elmer went to Prosper and bought a load of coal. I washed & Anita hung the clothes out. Marilyn was very fussy all day. She coughs quite hard just after she goes to sleep. I finished a little pink batiste dress for her.

Nov 23, Fri

A lovely day. Ervin Young came to fix the pump and was here to dinner. Elmer went to B.O. but came right back. He took Anita to Fern's to a club meeting. Marilyn was better today. I cut out an apron for Anita.

Nov 24, Sat

Very nice day and didn't thaw very much. Elmer took a grist to Canton in forenoon. He got cough medicine for baby as she has quite a cough. I finished Nita's apron & made a little kraut in afternoon. It turned much colder toward night.

Nov 25, Sun

A beautiful day but quite cold and ground is frozen hard. Raymonds were here to dinner & helped move the stove into the dining room so it won't be so cold for Marilyn. Her cold seems better.

Nov 26, Mon

Another beautiful day. We washed. the wind blew quite hard. Elmer dragged the road a little toward night. He went to Prosper in forenoon & got some lumber to fix the tank.

Nov 27, Tues

Nice in morning but clouded over & misted & snowed most of the day. We went to Ladies Aid at Merle Smith's. I rode down with Jim & Eda & came back with Elmers. We had a nice dinner & listened to a good talk by Dr. Chalice. Anita is about all in with sore throat and headache. Marilyn coughs hard & we greased her good with camphorated oil & nutmeg. The lights waned.

Nov 28, Wed

Very dark & sort of misty all day. Anita has a very sore throat and I am as tired as a dog, and Marilyn has such terrible coughing spells. Elmer got the turkey at Louies & I picked & dressed it. Luella took LuVerne to Harmony & had a permanent tooth pulled & in afternoon she came over here & helped & we were very glad too. I made a big cake & cookies & Luella killed a rooster and got it ready, so we got along fine. In eve I called to Minneapolis & Mrs. Newhouse said they left there in forenoon so must be at Spring Grove. (I believe this refers to Doris, Emil & kids) Elmer went to B.O. in eve. He helped husk at Louis all day.

Doris & Emil circa 1925

Nov 29, Thurs

Thanksgiving day & quite nice but not sunshiny. I called to Spring Grove & they said they would be down before noon & got here about 11-30. Luella got here about 11 and brought a cake & salad. We all ate all we could for dinner & Emil & Raymond went to Decorah to football game and took some things to Glen & Lillie & fish too. They brought down about 30 fish smoked & salted.

Nov 30, Fri

Very dark & cloudy. Anita & Elmer took Marilyn to Dr. Larison & he said he thought she had bronchitis. Margarette & I went to Canton with Miley. Doris, Emil & Marion went to Decorah & from there to Spring Grove & didn't get back until 6-30 & we went over to Luella's to supper at 5. I went over with them & we had a lovely supper. Ervin was there too. The lights went about out at Elmers so we had to go to bed before we wanted to.    $3.00 at Canton for 6 months from Nov 26th


Thursday, January 20, 2022

Look up...

Recently we had a storm come through in the night, high winds and a few snow flakes. By morning only the clouds remained to tell the story. Low clouds scudded by at a pace. Above them, larger clouds floated along sedately, benevolently. Both were headed north. It looked like a tortoise and hare story. 

The next time I looked up, I saw this:


Look Up!

Is that a ribcage
there in the sky?

And a hint of a backbone
catches my eye

Where did they come from?
Did a cloud creature die?

Before I can ask
they go scudding on by.

- Karen Eastlund

Looking up and cloud watching has been a good escape lately.  And then...

I ran across a wonderful poem by Kate diCamillo, writing about a snowy scene in NYC:

If I was in charge of making
snow globes, this is what I would put inside:
the old man in the black overcoat,
the black dog,
two friends with their faces turned up to the sky
as if they were receiving a blessing...

read the rest here.

Clouds themselves can feel like blessings. I wondered where they were going, and how they found their shape, and I began to think of them as a metaphor for writing. We don't always know where ideas come from, or how they will take shape, but we scud our words across the page, follow the prevailing winds, and somehow we get there. 

It's Friday again, and that means an online convention of poets! This Poetry Friday is hosted by Tabatha at The Opposite of Indifference. She's offering thoughts and a poem about puzzles...and yes... I've managed to solve a Wordle or three, and they are fun! Anyway, the rest of the group will post links there, so feel free to visit her and join in.

Thanks for reading today. Please leave a comment and remember to look up and see what blessings might come your way.

Friday, January 7, 2022

A little rest is needed

Happy Poetry Friday!

We managed this past weekend to gather with some family and have our traditional dinner of Swedish meatballs and noodles. My husband is the chief cook. The process is long and somewhat tedious, and since we expected 12 hungry folks, several batches of meatball mix were made the day before. Hours of preparation produced six pounds of meatball mix. Whoa!

The next day, each meatball was scooped onto a pan and baked, then kept warm in an oven. At least 4 full pans, plus extra for one grandson who needs dairy free. Plus some meat mix to flavor the gravy. It was quite a labor of love.

Meatballs before being smothered in cream gravy

The outcome was sensational. The first mouthful produced a sustained sigh of satisfaction. Fantastic!  

Of course, the meatballs need a poem, but I haven't had time to do them justice. Still, I had written a little poem about my husband... the grandpa in this poem... and how our evenings often unfold.  So, with that introduction, I hope you will like it.


After rustling up
a fine dinner
he sinks into his recliner
works on sudokus
nods off and

Yes, it happened after the meatballs! Yes, we smiled and felt the rest was well deserved. Ahhh...

It's Poetry Friday. Find more poets at Carol Varsalona's Beyond literacy link.

Wishing you sweet winter dreams, beautiful clear days, and a good pair of boots, should you need them!
Snow has arrived...

Thursday, January 6, 2022

Welcome to 2022

Happy New Year! I hope this finds you happy and healthy and ready for new challenges.

Each year the members of the Thursday Spiritual Journey group choose one word to offer focus to their year. I must admit that I have been fairly lame at this practice. Maybe it's my age?  Gasp!!! If the past is any prediction, by June I will have to look back to see what word I chose for that year. So I have been asking myself if this One Little Word idea, often referred to as OLW, works for me at all. Maybe I should stop kidding myself. Or maybe I haven't found the right word.  So, I've been considering... what word could inspire me and also bring focus to 2022? 

Finally, I decided on a word, and my word is STORY. This year I feel more invested in my decision, more motivated. I hope to look and work through the lens of story this year, and I hope to find some clues to my journey there.  

Me in Stoughton, WI, where I was born

I sometimes feel that my childhood was spent in a fog. Of course I remember certain things, but also I now recognize many issues and situations I had no clue about then. And the thing about fog is, you might come out of it to a beautiful vista, or you might come out to find embarrassment, shock, fear, intensity, etc. Each clearing offers an opportunity to learn, each one offers a challenge.

Here's a story that I don't exactly remember, but has been told to me. When I was about 3, my mother washed the floor, but when she next walked on it she slipped on a wet spot, her feet flew out from under her and she landed on her back. I reportedly said, "Do it again, Mama! Do it again!" Of course I was just a child, and I didn't recognize the possibility of pain or injury. It must have looked like a pratfall to me. And since it certainly didn't happen every day, there must have been an element of novelty to it. My mother did a trick! Do it again, Mama!!!

Top down: Mama in blue, me in red, my brother Eric, Aunt Anita, my Grandma Grace Pierce

Sometimes, even at my grandmotherly age, I still feel in a fog and I still misinterpret things. Perhaps we all do under our current conditions. But I'm praying that the fog lifts a little this year, and that stories both past and present will help me discern my path forward in the process.

When I was a child, I spoke and thought and reasoned as a child, but when I grew up I put away childish things.  Corinthians 13:11

Margaret Simon wrote: We are gathering again for the first Thursday of each month. This is an open invitation to any blogger who would like to join us. We post on the first Thursday of the month. Each month is hosted by a different blogger. We do not adhere to any specific religious affiliation. We are here to express our thoughts about how our spiritual lives are going. 

Join us if you can... read us if you wish... share!