Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.


Back in the . . .

129597992513478451 That pretty little girl on the far right of this picture is my mama. (Back in the day.) Her oldest two siblings aren’t in this picture. (Yep, that’s 7 kiddos and yes, it was the Great Depression, although I don’t know what was great about it.)

Just to the left of Mom is her sister Carol. The other even smaller boy is Uncle Robert. Those two are Mom’s only living siblings.

The big boy is Uncle Joe and the biggest girl is Aunt Virginia. It hurts my heart when I think about the family that’s gone on, but I love the stories the pictures bring back. Now look at Mama again. mom See how pretty and neat and girlie my mama looks with her feet together and her little puff sleeves puffed and her hair not blowing wild around her head? When I see that picture, I wonder if Mama despaired when she watched me grow up.

I hate to tell you how I looked at that age. *sigh* In most pictures (when I wasn’t heading to church or having a professional picture made) my hair is falling out of a ragged ponytail and the bows and ties on my dresses (if mama talked me into a dress that day) are all dragging behind me, because I didn’t sit and play little girl games. I ran and jumped and fought and played and had a good time!

Mama said Grandma kept her hair short and “shingled up the back” (I think that’s stacked, but I’m not sure) to make it easier to take care of. mom's-hair Mama didn’t like that pixie cut (that’s what we called it) so she kept mine long. We spent a while every night (or the next morning if I crashed too early) trying to comb out the snarls, tangles and cockle burrs. 🙂

With six sibs, I have a feeling if Mama got cockle burrs in her hair, she had to comb them out herself.

Now look at this.


Those are Mama’s feet. Her socks are sagging, her shoes need polishing or the dust washed off (and they might not match each other) and her knees and legs have a few scabs on them. 🙂

Hm. Maybe Mama and I were more alike than I thought. Maybe she liked to run and play and jump and fight and have fun, too.

Maybe, if I’d known Mom when we were both children, we’d have been really good friends. I like to think so, anyway. 😛