Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.

Lord’s Day Memories


Remember when you kept your best clothes for church only? When you had a pair of Sunday School shoes that you didn’t wear them anywhere else, except maybe to weddings? When you had a few “nice” dresses you never, ever wore to school unless there was a program and you were on the stage?

At our house, Saturdays were spent getting ready for Sunday. With 5 girls, Mama started washing, rolling and drying our hair on Saturday morning. Grandmother, who lived next door and usually fixed Sunday dinner, started cooking and baking about the same time Mama started doing hair.

And then there were shoes to polish (dad’s job, usually) dresses to press, little brother’s church pants to find and launder (look under the bed!) and offering change to distrubute.

Sunday Mornings we ate cereal and Sara Lee coffee cake (yum!) for breakfast. Most days we had eggs and bacon or biscuits and gravy, but since we wanted to be at Sunday School by 9:45 and Mama slept late on Sunday (clear up until 8:00 LOL), we didn’t have time for all that.

One Sunday morning, I got dressed and Mama combed my hair. “Sit down and don’t get dirty,” was always the rule after we were ready, so I did.

Then my new baby brother started crying. Mama brought him to me to hold while she rushed to get everyone else ready. (I had a sister 18 months old and one who was three years old as well as one three years younger than me.)

The baby cried, so I jiggled and patted and sang. He was so tiny and perfect with lots of dark, curly hair. I really like holding him when he was happy.

Then he spit up–a lot! It was so gross, and smelled so awful, it made me sick. I couldn’t help it, I threw up on him, too, which left me with a lap full of baby and vomit.

I’m not sure there are words to describe how icky that was!

Mama must have heard the commotion or maybe I started wailing, because she came running. “Oh, no!” It wasn’t a quick, “Oh, no.” It was that awful, “Ooooh, noooooo,” that every kid hates to hear, especially when it comes from their mama and is aimed at them.

And Daddy was right behind her. “What happened, Susan?”

“He threw up and it made me sick,” I answered.

He spit up.” Mama wasn’t happy. “That’s not the same thing.”

“It is when it’s on you.” I cried.

I thought Mama was going to cry, too, since it was practically time to load up the car and leave for church and she had to start from scratch with two of her five kids. But as usual, Daddy made everything okay. He gave the baby to Mom to wash off and redress and told me to take a quick bath. “Just don’t get your hair wet.” (I had long curly hair and no time for a redo.)

Grandmother had come over to ride to church with us by then, so she was put in charge of keeping everyone else clean.

And we made it to church on time. Okay, it might have been the nick of time, but a nick is s good as mile. Right?

I don’t think Little Brother remembers me tossing my cookies on him, so he wasn’t traumatized for life. (As far as I know.) In fact, he loves the Lord with a joy that’s beautiful to see. He’s a deacon in his church (I think) and even leads the singing from time to time.

I’ll have to ask the crew and see if anyone else remember that Sunday morning. Do you have any Sunday Morning Memories you can share? 

Serve the Lord with gladness.


Author: Susan Shay

For as long as I can remember, I've loved two things--reading and people--and that led me to become a writer. Many of my stories are set in Small Town Worlds. I'm a wife, mother, sibling and an aunt. I have a deep faith in God, and an exciting life in Christ. Maybe I shouldn't be (after all, he's God!) but I'm constantly amazed at the things He's up to. :)

6 thoughts on “Lord’s Day Memories

  1. I don’t have a Sunday morning memory because I was too young to remember this but my mom told me. One Sunday morning when I was a baby, older brother Kenny was about 22 months, older brother Dennis was 4 years, and older brother Wayne was 5 years old, my parents were in a hurry to get us all ready for church. My dad actually went to church when I was a baby but later lost his job, his car, and his house, and blamed God and quit going to church (another story). Anyway, they hurried so much they forgot to put a diaper on me and there I ended up in the nursery with a bare bottom! 🙂 Another time, when I was about eight years old, my mother and brothers and I were hurry to get to a night service and it was a hot summer night. I forgot to put my shoes on! Embarrassing.

    • Oh, Terri! Great stories. We have a few of those, “Oops!” in our fam, too.
      I’m sorry to hear your dad stopped going to church. That’s heart breaking. I know.

      • Yes, it was so devastating that he didn’t go to church with us after that. He and my mom divorced the year I graduated from high school. But, thankfully, years later he married again and started going to church and changed his life. He actually sat in my house one morning reading me some Bible verses at breakfast time. I was so happy I cried. (Not in front of him) He’s passed away now in 2007 but he went to be with the Lord. I look forward to seeing him again one day.

        • Oh, Terri. That’s absolutely beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing his story with us. I know the angels were dancing when he reopened his heart.
          I’m so sorry you’ve lost him, but isn’t it wonderful knowing exactly where he is? It comforts me so much, knowing our family who’ve gone on wouldn’t come back even if they were given the chance. There’re exactly where we all want to be!

  2. Church shoes, church dresses, church socks, and my little white Bible . . .

    I doubt we were ever late (Mom only had three of us to get dressed and out the door) because I’m pretty sure Mom was never late ANYWHERE in her entire life. Sundays were always like a mini-family reunion, since most of my dad’s family went there, and a few of my mom’s. After the service, we’d stop at this little bakery on Main Street and get a couple loaves of fresh-baked bread to have with dinner. She might have only planned on five for the meal, but we sometimes brought three or four or five cousins home with us to stay until we went back for the evening service, and there was always enough left over for dinner, too. 🙂

    • I’ll bet you’re right about your mom.
      Our mom was late a lot, Marilyn, because she had so much to do. (And throwing up on little brothers slowed her down a lot!) LOL.
      Great Sunday memories. And a bakery open on Sundays! We’d have loved that. Everyone got together for Sunday dinner, but we were equal opportunity worshipers. Grandmother’s parents were Church of God, my mom Christian, my mom’s family, Baptist, and several cousins Assembly of God.
      But we all love the Lord.

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