Peevish Pen

Ruminations on reading, writing, rural living, retirement, aging—and sometimes cats. And maybe a border collie or other critters.

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Location: Rural Virginia, United States

I'm an elderly retired teacher who writes. Among my books are Ferradiddledumday (Appalachian version of the Rumpelstiltskin story), Stuck (middle grade paranormal novel), Patches on the Same Quilt (novel set in Franklin County, VA), Them That Go (an Appalachian novel), and several Kindle ebooks.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Memories I Can't Remember

. . . because I was a baby at the time.


Recently, while cleaning a closet, I found a box that hadn't been opened since I moved here in 1999. When I opened the box, I found some of my baby clothes—as well as the pillow case above—that my mother had saved. She even left a note identifying them.


 I can't remember ever seeing these garments before, but obviously I must have worn them.  They all seemed to be made from thin cotton, and most were embroidered. 



They certainly don't look like today's baby clothes. Most looked homemade. I imagine that Mama made them, but some might have been made by relatives.


In the gown below, the neckline was hand-embroidered and a few pink flowers were embroidered on the front. She must have made this one after I was born, since it's obviously for a girl. 


I'm not sure about the one below with blue embroidery. Could this have a baby gift when her first child was born from someone who didn't know that baby boy soon died?


Along with the clothes was a very soft—and hand-embroidered—baby blanket. The moths have done a job on it, but the embroidery and interwoven ribbons still show.

 

She also included two sun-suits that I must have worn when I was two or three. I know I wore sun-suits until I was five. I know where she got the fabric for these—from the sacks that Grandma's chicken feed came in. I can remember those sacks, and I can remember Mama using her treadle Singer sewing machine (which I still have but have never used) to sewing them into outfits for me.


Each sun-suit had a pocket, but I don't know what I would have put in it.


She not only made sun-suits for me, she also made them for my older cousin Marty. Here we are on the back porch of our Floraland Drive house that was built in 1947. The house looks new here, so I'm guessing this picture was taken in 1948.


In the box was a blouse that I must have worn when I was three or four. It's made of the same type thin cotton as the baby clothes.


The box also contained two baby books and a book on baby care. (They're a subject for another blog-post.)


The baby book on the right was provided by Lewis-Gale Hospital where I was born. Inside the back cover is a picture of the hospital, which was located near where Channel 10 is today.


The baby care book had a section on clothes. The ones in the illustration look remarkably similar to what I wore.


 In the box, I found something else—a slip that my mother wore when she was four.


The attached note, in my mother's handwriting, reads: "Alene Ruble wore this slip when she was four years old. Mama made it in 1917." 


I'll blog more about the closet box in a future post.
~

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