Mothers Diary
I like Mondays. I know that seems like a startling statement, being washday and all – but that's just the point. It isn't my washday.
For a long time at home, Sunday evenings were spoiled for me by the inevitable gathering of dirty clothes, and sorting and preparing for an early start at the washing Monday morning. And though, in my own household, I don't do any advance preparation the night before (an early start means nothing to me) Sunday evening was always haunted by the specter of the Monday washing. So the remedy was simple. I just changed my washday to Tuesday, and after that, I had a lovely time Sunday evening – and a lovely time on Monday besides.
Not long after the change, I was nobly vindicated by an article in a magazine wherein the author stated that Monday was not a logical washday. It was the day that should be given over to recuperation from the week end; for cleaning the house after a Sunday with the whole family at home and possibly company; for disposing of the Sunday paper; and for replenishing an exhausted larder and really working up something fascinating with the left over, if any.
There are arguments against this idea, of course; chief among them being that a late washday makes a late ironing day, and generally balls up the week for the systematic housewife. My mother feels this way, and was always one to tie herself in knots getting the washing out at the crack of dawn, and ironing far into Monday evening, thereby triumphantly getting both washing and ironing done in the same day. I could have seen some sense to this if she got these chores out of the way for Tuesday rest or outing. But Tuesday morning she would be tearing into some other household task, and so on far in to the week. She never did reach a day for relaxation. It just did not make sense to me.
So I fool everybody. I take my day off from regular chores on Monday, and if I don't catch up the rest of the week at least I’m not cheated of my puttering "catching up" day. And I have a lovely time feeling smug and cozy while all the neighbors are madly dashing about doing washings. Of course, I imagine they feel just a bit smug on Tuesday while I'm tearing around and theirs is all done. But I don't mind a bit.

I have another reason for liking Mondays. I appreciate anew, the pleasure of being just a housewife – a housewife being one who sits down after the family is off to school and work, and leisurely enjoys breakfast with as many cups of coffee as she wants.
On Saturdays I have to bathe and dress up and comb my hair and hustle myself down to the office as soon as I get up. On Sundays, I have to clean up and dress up and rush off to Sunday school and church. So by Monday I appreciate the privilege of getting into slacks instead of a suit. I really feel sorry, sometimes for women who never get a chance to go around all morning without lipstick.

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Mothers Diary
One morning not so long ago, as the children were leisurely gathering for breakfast a few minutes before eight, the phone rang, and Mrs. Raymond Peterson was asking if the youngsters "weren't going to school this morning?"
Well – after all, of course they were, and then she exploded the bombshell. "It's a quarter of nine," she said, "and we hadn't seen them go by. I'm taking my children in the car, so if you hurry up, you can ride too,"
My – such a flurry! Breakfast less and all of a doodah, the children dashed outside and there was Mrs. Peterson in the driveway already, and they all got to school on time. Then I checked with the telephone and my watch was nearly an hour slow.
So now every time I go by Peterson's and wave at a youngster in the window, I feel like bowing and crying out, "Thanks for good neighbors."

Taffy Our puppy, Taffy, is no help when I'm sweeping, or using the oil mop or scrubbing. I do have the youngsters trained to keep their distance at such moments, but Taffy hasn't caught on yet. When I'm sweeping, he manages to keep just ahead of the broom, making dashing forays into the pile of dirt for a piece of paper or a stray marble, usually ending up by skidding straight through everything on his surprised little rear. The oil mop intrigues him no end – it's such a bushy active thing – and he larrups around it and me, growling and leaping at it with ferocity.
But it's worse when I'm scrubbing. He tries to drink the scrub water!

I can't help but wonder what the experienced knitters in the audience of the play at the Congregational Church Wednesday, thought of Grandma and her knitting. Poor Grandma – she had never had needles in her hands until the night before. And as for winding a ball of yarn from a skein! Her inexperience with that was very evident.

For a long time I have watched Murphy's store windows with interest – very fetching and clever, most of them. I think I liked the doll's tea party the best, and the present display of Christmas cards with the little house on the snow-covered hill is unusually attractive.
I understand that Velma Williams is responsible for most of them.

Since last winter when I greeted and talked to Gene Gerth on his first leave after entering service, I have sort of stood on the sidelines as service men returned home here in Manson. I didn't know them before they went away, and I have watched with open envy as our citizens meet a soldier here or a sailor there, and shout, "Why, hello there, Johnny. My it's good to see you back." The most I could ever do was murmur "How do you do?" in response to an introduction. Anyway, returning servicemen aren't really interested in meeting new people. They want to meet again the people they knew before they left. And as I say, since Gene Gerth last winter, I have felt cheated as more and more of the boys come home – until Saturday, Curtis Swanson walked into the office; and it was with extreme satisfaction and pleasure that I cried out, "Why, hello, Curtis. My it's good to see you back.

The children were delighted the other day to receive a card from Mr. and Mrs. Sid Howrey in Texas. The picture of the long horned steer on the card was examined and re-examined with much curiosity and wonderment. We were happy to know that they are there safe and well.

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Mothers Diary
It is incredible that Thanksgiving is here already. It seems only yesterday that it was Labor Day! My husband tells me it's a sign I'm getting old when time seems to slip by me so fast.
Anyway, I think every one greets this Thanksgiving Day with lighter hearts. If our loved ones aren't with us, at least we know it won't be long. We have special cause for giving thanks in our family this year. My brother Bill, who has been stationed in the South Pacific since December of 1941, has at last arrived in the States. So we expect to see him before so very many days.

Miss Richmond next door sent over some plants the other day and had one can fixed up in a very novel way. Though others may know about the idea, it was new to me. She had cut shelf paper to fit and pasted it around, enhancing a plain tin can and a lovely plant.

We are especially pleased to get them, as we have had no plants since leaving all my nice ones in Waterloo. The truckers informed me, when packing, that we couldn't take them, as they'd never survive in the hot, airless truck. So I meekly left them – apparently not possessing the valiant pioneer spirit of Mrs. Shifflett, who brought her plants through freezing weather in a wagon, a good many years ago.

Bruce and I are getting pretty well acquainted during our morning alone while the rest of the family is gone. He is a very efficient partner and co-worker in almost everything I do, and when he is occasionally thrown upon his own resources, he can usually think of something to do.
The other morning he suddenly discovered (as all children eventually do) the enthralling sensation produced by revolving around and around until dizzy. Suddenly he sat down and cried out in a startled voice, "What's the floor tipping up for?"
Which reminded me of our daughter's first experience in that line. It was at bedtime and she had several admirers about the living room watching her antics in pajamas. Intoxicated by all the attention, she whirled around and around, then steadied herself, and asked dazedly, "Where's everybody going?"

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Mothers Diary
Thanksgiving, this year, was the kind of day we've dreamed of for many years, with never a vacation long enough to have it. We went to Grandma's and Grandpa's house, and anyone knows that that is the best place in the world to go for Thanksgiving dinner.
Bill Frost So it was just like a dream come true — coming in out of the cold, gray day, to the warm, bright house, the smell of wonderful food, and Grandma bustling about getting everyone comfortable. I immediately peeked under the roaster lid to view the turkey, counted the pumpkin and mince pies, appropriated some grapes from the table centerpiece, and I was back home!
The best part of all, of course, was having my brother Bill with us for the first time in five years. So, even though two of my sisters couldn't get there, we had a lot to be thankful for.
Part of our personal thanks go to our neighbors and friends here — to Miss Richmond for looking after the plants and the chickens — to the Macklins for boarding and rooming Taffy-and to Mr. Martin for looking after the fires and having it lovely and warm for us to come home to late Sunday afternoon.

The children had a wonderful time. Since my very first visit home with our first child my mother has been collecting all sorts of things that children love to play with. So by now, when they go to her house, they know what to expect — box after box of the most fascinating toys, trinkets, and games that keep them busy and happy during their entire stay. Not the least of the fun, is the old phonograph with the cylinder records that play "The Jolly Coppersmith," and "Uncle Josh's Huskin' Bee" and "Don't Bite the Hand That's Feeding You." It's quite a thing, and fascinated us adults as well as the children. But it made me feel quite old to contemplate on how far we had come since that ancient phonograph was considered "solid" entertainment.

The first real snowfall of the season Monday afternoon had us all excited around our house. There is a special thrill to it even when we see it every year — but it was extra special for Bill. He sat gazing out the window as he remarked, "That's something I've been waiting to see again for four years."

Such little things mark the home coming of all service men, I suppose. Snow — the same old calendar on the wall of his room at home — being able to slip into his old sweater — and even seeing groceries on the shelves! Sunday evening when we came home to practically a bare larder, we were saved by the courtesy of Mr. Cummings. He opened his store for my husband and Bill, and they soon returned with supper makings.
"And, say," said Bill, "I'm going to have to go on a shopping excursion of my own — those little glasses of cheese, you know, and packages of fig cookies." Then he told of one of the best feeds a few of the boys had down under was once when one of them received in a package, a jar of cheese and a bottle of olives. They acquired a loaf of bread and really had themselves a time.

I hope little Johnnie Foley got more satisfaction out of Monday's snowstorm than he did from the scant one we had a few weeks ago. Passersby reported that he had his sled out then dragging it about in search of every stray flake.