Tag Archives: Memoirs

Memories of New Mexico~Part 6

9 Apr

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

 

I really love New Mexico. I actually don’t remember anything about living in Dallas, Texas, but then, I was only four years old when we moved from there to Albuquerque. I think the “memories” I have of the house in Dallas are from pictures I’ve seen, and the stories others have told me about it.

 

 

I do have one memory of Dallas – we attended the First Baptist Church in Dallas. I have a very vague memory of black-and-white tiles on a floor, and the smell of Pinesol. Mother told me that the nursery at the church had a floor like that, and that they used Pinesol as a cleaner. But that’s it!

Now, New Mexico…that’s a whole different story. I’ve given you pictures of our house – we lived in that house the entire time I lived there. It wasn’t sold until after my father died – and mother lived there more than five years until she married again and they moved into an apartment.

I had a most unique experience with that house in later years. It was in 1993, when my mother died. Fred and I, as well as my brother, Bill and his wife, DiVoran, flew out for mother’s funeral. Our oldest daughter, Karen and her husband, Brian, decided to drive from South Carolina to Albuquerque for the funeral, as well. On this particular day – the day after the funeral – Fred and Bill had stayed at the apartment to arrange shipment of some of mother’s things that each of us wanted. Brian drove his car with Karen, DiVoran and myself in it. I wanted to show him where we had lived and grown up.

We drove to the house, and he stopped the car in front of the house. As we sat, looking at the house, with me describing what was where, the couple who owned the house, came out and looked at us. I rolled down my window, and assured them that it was okay – that I had grown up in that house. I nearly fell out of the car when they asked if we would like to come in and see it now. Remember now, it had been about 22 years since I had been in that house!

I was NOT about to pass up that invitation!! So we all piled into the house. I would point out things for Brian – I think Karen might have been a bit too young to remember much about it, as well – and tell what we had then. When we arrived in the kitchen, I mentioned that mother had painted the cabinets pink, and that we had green linoleum on the floor. The husband looked at me and said, “ I remember stripping pink paint from those cabinets!” DiVoran and I then explained that mother had pink plastic (like Melmac) dishes, and she wanted to “match.”

 

 

Pink cabinets, green linoleum – Granny holding Trixie, Mom, Boots the cat, all in the kitchen

When we got to the bathroom, I told them that we had green tile around the tub/shower. Again, he looked at me, and said, “I tiled white tiles over those green ones.” I guess it showed him that I had, indeed, grown up in that house. I told him how mom and dad had added the patio and cover that joined the house to the garage. They had a large bamboo shade that they could roll up or down, depending upon whether the sun was beating down on it, such as at supper time. We enjoyed many, many meals out on that patio.

I still think it was quite brave of that couple to invite four strangers into their house!

More memories to come…..

 

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

 

Memories of New Mexico~Part 5

26 Mar

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

 

 

So many memories returning to my mind….where do I start?

Okay, let’s start with some of my first memories – and pictures of our time in New Mexico. Daddy had gone ahead of us (we were living in Dallas, Texas at the time), and purchased a house. Mother had never seen it until we arrived in Albuquerque. I thought it was a neat house, but then that’s all I had known. I never knew what Mother thought about it. But she made it her own, and it was comfortable.

Here I am, with my Mother, in front of our new house,

 

and the house itself.

 

 

From records, it was built in 1940, and we purchased it in 1945. It all looks a bit rugged at that point in time, but my parents worked it well, and it became a thing of beauty.

See that screened-in front porch? My brother and I spent many a summer afternoon out there with our friends. And then we set up cots to sleep on during the summer nights. It was great! I especially remember my best friend coming over and we would play Monopoly all day long, sleep at night out there, then start up the next day. That went on for days….and days…..and days! But it was summer, and we were kids.

Here’s a picture of Bill and me in front of one of the Pampas Grass bushes that grew there.

 

 

Daddy tamed that bush and it prospered beautifully. I especially want you to notice the flagstone sidewalk. I really loved that sidewalk. It was curvy, and really unique. Unfortunately, the city decided each house had to have a concrete sidewalk from the house to a running sidewalk that ran along the street. The city poured that sidewalk, but Daddy had to pay to have the flagstones removed and the straight walk from the house poured. It just wasn’t the same!

 

 

In the background of this picture is a house on the corner. Those of you old enough to remember the Lawrence Welk show on TV, might also remember that he had a dancer, Bobby. I don’t remember the name of his first partner, but his second dance partner, the cute little blond – Cissy – grew up in that house on the corner. Her family owned a dance studio, and all the children were later involved in it. Her brother, John, and I were close in age. So that’s my claim to fame!

Also in the background, behind us in this picture, you can see some fairly flat ground with some spindly trees. That was the start of Bataan Memorial Park, in honor of those from New Mexico who were involved in the Bataan Death March and the battle of Corregidor in World War 2.

Credit Google Search

Google Search

Credit Google Search

 

Unfortunately, back then, it was just a place to go and play. I didn’t understand the significance of it until many years later. The names of those involved are engraved on stones within the park.

 

 

It’s a lush, beautiful park now, and is the site of many gatherings, weddings, etc. It played a bit of a part in our family, as it was where my brother, Bill, took his model airplanes he had built, to fly. Frequently I would accompany him, watch him fly his planes, watch them crash, then he would take them home and fix them up. I think I helped him repair them, but I may have been more of a hindrance than help. At least I don’t remember him chasing me away!

~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

Family Treasures~Part 1

5 Jun

 

SUNDAY MEMORIES

Judy Wills

JUDY

 

 Sometimes, the things you grow up with, just don’t seem like anything special.   They are just “there”….part of the woodwork. I’ve found that, not until I got older – and left my girlhood home – did those “things” become important to me. When my Aunt Jessie died, we had an estate auction – at her house. The auctioneer said that, with all the antiques she had, her house was the perfect setting for the auction. They sold everything “down to the carpet.”

Of course, there were some things that each of us wanted that was hers. I took some things that were special to me, as did my brother and my mother.

But when my mother died, my brother and I took things of mothers that she had taken to the apartment where she and my step-father lived. Not a whole lot was left of my girlhood home, but we did get a few things. Some things have ended up in our daughters houses, as well as with our niece and nephew.

There were a couple of mirrors that I especially wanted to keepsake, and I’m glad I did. Growing up, there was a gilt-edged mirror over the mantel of our living room fireplace. Of course, to a child, it seemed huge! Here are a couple of pictures of that particular mirror.

 

Since Fred and I didn’t really need a mirror that size, our oldest daughter said she would like to have it. That was a joy to me, that she would want something that was a part of my family history – a family treasure. I am reminded of my childhood home every time I see that mirror.

And so, Karen and her husband acquired that mirror and it now hangs above the mantel over their living room fireplace. Here is a picture of that mirror in its new home.

5

 

Brian (son-in-law) had always enjoyed the mirror, but had no idea of its significance to our family. As we were discussing it with him one day, I mentioned that it had been in my girlhood home until mother and my step-father sold the house and moved into an apartment. His reaction was priceless! “It wasn’t just some mirror you found to give to us?” No, it was in my family from the time I could remember until you acquired it. He said that it meant a great deal more to him, now that he knew that particular mirror had family history to it. I think he enjoys it more now, because of that family treasure.

There is another mirror that is a treasure of mine. This is a mirror that was in my bedroom as I was growing up. I always enjoyed the fact that the outer “rim” was small pieces of mirror – mirror tiles. It was so pretty. Unfortunately, by the time that mirror made its way with us around the country and world, a lot of those little mirror tiles had broken off and were lost. So I had more mirrors replaced, but just a solid piece of glass instead. It’s still pretty – and it still hangs in our guest room – but I miss the uniqueness of those little mirror tiles. However, it’s still a great reminder to me of my childhood – and it’s still a part of my current life. I like that.

6

 

 

 

 

%d bloggers like this: