I had to walk to school uphill...both

September 23, 2021 2 Comments

I had to walk to school uphill...both

I had a tough old childhood.  I swear I was the only child on the face of the earth that had to do chores.  My worst job ever was to climb the sky-high silo, shovel a mountain of corn silage down (usually frozen hard as a rock) that was as tall as me, and then feed it to the evil steers that wanted to kill me, separated from me by only one stinking wire.  If that weren't enough torture, then I had climb right back and to shovel another mountain down for my mom to feed the next morning.  Many, many tears were shed.  Poor me.

I was also a bit of a neat freak so my story gets worse.  I had a younger brother.  Enough said, right?  We traded chores (barns) every so often...I believe this was so that I could clean up his messes.  Just when I would get things whipped into shape - BAM - time to switch.  Are you feeling sorry for me?

I am also scarred by my mother's talent for sewing.  When I was in school, these were all I wanted...

This is what I got...

Then, I had a little phase of thinking these were cool:

Here's how that worked out...

Much bullying and more tears.

My story does have one bright, shining moment however.  My frugal and very talented mother ROCKED Halloween costumes!  Both my brother and myself nearly always won the costume contests and man, I tell you what...she killed it in that department!  I wish I had pictures for you.  Since I don't, take my word for it.  From about October 20-30 I fell asleep every single night to the sweet humming of her sewing machine.  There was also a prom dress success and a very beautiful gown I wore for senior pictures.  Thank me later for not posting pics.  I was able to snag a costume she made for my daughter, however:

She's good, right?  Shhhh...don't want it going to her head!  


I hope that you know by now that I am joking about all of this.  I am so grateful for my childhood "woes" now.  They taught me super important lessons about life.  When I left for college, I was, "Never coming home again except for holidays.  Farm work is too hard and demanding."  My first job at college was in the barns, and what the heck happened?  Look at my little hobby farm now!  My parent also taught me how to be frugal when needed, and the bullying I endured due to my homemade clothes made me strong and resilient.  Most of all, my mom's dedicated all night sewing sessions proved her love for us.  Her intentions were always the very best, which is exactly what she wanted for both myself and my brother.  There is still no better way to show love, I believe than sewing.  I have been lucky to have a family chock full of talented, loving, sewing women.  Some are gone now, but the memories we made sewing together and for one another live on forever.


Related sidenote:  Zubaz can be purchased today online for $19.99.  Hammerpants are right in that ballpark as well.  Don't be surprised if there's a new dress code at Pine Needles!


Piece out!


2 Responses

Kristi Johnston
Kristi Johnston

September 27, 2021

I grew up with my mom sewing clothes. She too was very frugal. I remember an Easter dress she made (along with a matching one for my older sister by 7.5 years). Mom used polyester fabric that was really scratchy, along with an extra large hem so I could wear it for a long time. Not only did I have the joy or wearing mine for several years, I got to wear my sisters 8 years later. We joked about those dresses for years!

Marj Martin
Marj Martin

September 24, 2021

Love your story Susie! Mine is very similar – but I had 3 sisters and one brother most of my growing up years, with another brother added when I was 12. But we still had to work and yes, mom sewed for us girls until we learned how to do it ourselves. And she sewed for her grandkids! I am now looking forward to sewing for mine. Thanks for the memories!

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