In order to save myself some typing, I am presenting to you today, an edited version of an e-mail I received from a cousin of Hubs’. When I first read this lovely piece, (it has been doing the e-mail route for some time, now – maybe you’ve already read it!), I was immediately transported to my childhood home and spent some sweet time reflecting and remembering my wonderful maternal grandmother – Cordelia Usher Brock – and my delightful mother – Pearl Brock Tohline. My grandmother lived with us for many years, and even after we left Texas she would fly up to visit us for a few months at a time. The first time she made the trip up to see us – it was about 1964 (she would have been about 83) – it was her very first flight. She absolutely loved it, and because she was the spitting image of the quintessential grandmother, she was doted on and pampered by all the flight attendants. When she arrived at our house, she called her eldest daughter, Imola, (yeah, I know – someday I’ll have to post about some of the names in my family!), and told her, “Imola, before you die, you just must take a trip in that flying bus!”
Anyway – I grew up surrounded by the many wonderful aprons of the superwomen of my family. I am fortunate to still have some of them in my possession. I find it odd, however, that as much as I loved those aprons on my Mom and Grandma, I have never enjoyed wearing them myself, so, alas! I shall not be carrying on this wonderful tradition with our granddaughter. Hubs wears them more than I do – but he has always been more clothes conscious than I am. Do you think that’s why his clothes always last for 30 years, before he tires of them and gives them away? My clothes generally have a half-life of about 6 months – if I’m lucky and the spaghetti sauce doesn’t boil over!
Enough typing – now on to a wonderful essay (author unknown) – and true and real to the letter – as anyone who grew up protected by and tied to the apron-strings of love will tell you!
A Brief History of APRONS
I don’t think our kids know what an apron is. The principal use of Grandma’s apron was to protect the dress underneath because she only had a few. It was also because it was easier to wash aprons than dresses and aprons used less material. But along with that, it served as a potholder for removing
hot pans from the oven.
It was wonderful for drying children’s tears, and on occasion was even used for cleaning out dirty ears.
From the chicken coop, the apron was used for carrying eggs, fussy chicks, and sometimes half-hatched eggs to be finished in the warming oven.
When company came, those aprons were ideal hiding places for shy kids.
And when the weather was cold Grandma wrapped it around her arms.
Those big old aprons wiped many a perspiring brow,
bent over the hot wood stove.
Chips and kindling wood were brought into the kitchen in that apron.
From the garden, it carried all sorts of vegetables. After the peas had been shelled, it carried out the hulls.
In the fall, the apron was used to bring in apples that had fallen from the trees.
When unexpected company drove up the road, it was surprising how much furniture that old apron could dust in a matter of seconds.
When dinner was ready, Grandma walked out onto the porch, waved her apron, and the men folk knew it was time to come in from the fields to dinner.
It will be a long time before someone invents something that will replace that ‘old-time apron’ that served so many purposes.
Send this to those who would know (and love) the story about Grandma’s aprons.
Grandma used to set her hot baked apple pies on the window sill to cool. Her granddaughters set theirs on the window sill to thaw.
They would go crazy now trying to figure out how many germs were on that apron.
I don’t think I ever caught anything from an apron – but love…
To all my Gentle Readers, I wish you enough. . .