Sunday dinner was usually the same menu at our house because it “worked” for Mama. She put the beef roast, beef raised by my father, in the oven around 9:00. We went to Sunday School at 10:00 and got home from church around 12 noon; therefore, the roast was perfectly done about the time we got home. The funny stories about the roast involve the Sundays on which Mother would suddenly get a funny look on her face during the sermon. Then, she would jump up and leave or whisper in Daddy’s ear, and he would jump up and leave. Usually it was because she forgot to turn the roast down or she left the potatoes boiling. We always had the burned roast (we all loved it that way and do to this day), mashed potatoes which were sometimes very gluey because they had set in the boiling water the two hours that we were at church, green beans ( fresh in the spring time and straight from a jar that my mother had canned the rest of the year), homemade rolls, either a chocolate cream pie or a cocoanut cream pie or both, and strong, sweet, sweet tea, which the grandkids later labeled “MeMaw’s Sweet Tea”. Talk about good memories. We all sat down at the same table at the same time and enjoyed our meal and had family discussions, often about something the preacher had said. Then, the kids washed the dishes (we had no dishwasher), and Mother and Daddy read the newspapers from cover to cover.
It was long after I was an adult that I realized that not all people prefer burned beef. We had it that way so often that we thought that was normal, and well-done or even burned became our preference. I was also grown before I realized that not everyone got up and went to Sunday School and Church every Sunday.
Psalm 118:24 “This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.”
Today, the day after Epiphany, we took our first Christmas tree on top of the “Mountain” down. Our first Christmas on top of the “Mountain” was spectacular and wonderful. All but one of our five children were here to enjoy this special time of the year with us and both of our grandchildren were here, as well as Cousin Henry, Trish, and Jay. The tree was a 9 or 10 feet tall pine. Formerly we cut a live cedar (Juniper) tree in the pasture for our Christmas tree, but the girls and my husband are a bit allergic to cedar, so this year, we bought a traditional pine tree. I must admit I miss the smell of a cedar tree brought in from the pasture. The smell is so strong and so heavenly and reminds me of my childhood when Daddy and I would go in search of a tree for our house and for my grandmother’s house, and for my bedroom. We would come back with three sizes of trees. A giant one for our house, a medium-sized one for Granny’s, and a tiny one for my bedroom. I have always loved cedar trees, but all of the ranchers in this rural area despise them because they soak up a tremendous amount of precious ground water, and apparently, they are good for nothing! Nothing likes to eat them, and they grow like bad weeds. Well, I guess they are bad weeds!
The second photo is of the last cedar tree we had when we still lived in the cabin, but had our Christmas in the barn. Of course that was before the barn was full of “stuff”. I must admit that making paper chains, hanging candy canes and bells, and wrapping our presents in brown mailing paper with twine tied around them was a blast! The oil candles were fun, too. It was a little chilly in the barn since we didn’t have much in the way of heat or light. We did have some Coleman lanterns hanging from the ceiling.
I hope you have special memories of a special tree, and these two trees will always be very special to me!