More Christmas Memories

I’ve got those carols playing again … they sure do put me in a wonderful mood for remembering past times. When the stock market crashed way back there in 1929, my folks were caught up in it, too.

My Dad had Russell Vogler Export Company, exporting logs to Japan. I guess with the crash, that went down as well. My parents decided to move out of the city (Vancouver) to the country where they could “live off the land.” Dad and my two brothers went on a trip, scouting out the best place they could find for us to live.

I remember they had an auction of all their belongings. So I wouldn’t be “underfoot,” our neighbours, Jack Diamond and his wife, took me with his daughter, Marcia, to the races. He said if their horse won, he would buy us both an outfit … the horse won, and he did buy us shorts and a blouse!

At the auction they even sold my doll house that they had made out of two orange crates! Got fifty cents for it.

Our home in Beaver Valley

We moved to Beaver Valley in the Cariboo. Fifty miles east of Williams Lake … sixteen miles from Horsefly, where our nearest store was situated, and where we had to go to pick up our mail! I was sent to pick up the mail one time. I rode 32 miles, by myself … I can still picture some of the areas that I went through! When you got your mail you collected everyone’s and brought it to all the ranches in the area. I was warned “not to get off my horse.” At the time, I didn’t understand that!

Almost everything had to be ordered from the Simpson Sears catalogue. When I was ten, I got a doll that came inside a “wardrobe” along with one or two outfits. You were very lucky to get one present! In a way, it’s sad to see all the toys that children receive at Christmas now. They leave little room for imagination!

Mom made fondant. She said it could only be made on a sunny day! Then we all sat around the dining room table with the potbellied stove stoked to keep us warm, and we stuffed dates with the fondant, and made it into other kinds of candy as well.

It was a good life, even though there was a real shortage of cash.

A.B. Campbell's home - he later married my sister



18 thoughts on “More Christmas Memories

  1. It was the simple life and most of the time the good life.
    In wanting better for our children it was left behind, I guess in a way we got what we wanted…

  2. The simpler life was, in many ways, richer than the consumer life people live now. When the emphasis is all on things, we miss the real values of Christmas. I remember a precious few possessions, and those because of the people with whom they are associated. It is really all about the relationships.

  3. Those are wonderful memories Norma. I grew up on military bases as a child but some of my fondest memories are when we visited my grandfather Connor on his farm near Smith Falls Ontario. No power, no running water and really quiet. Those were fun days. Have a great week Norma!

  4. Jean, Judith, Phil and Norman… what a nice tea party we have been having this morning. Thanks to each one of you for coming by, and especially for leaving a comment for me. I really do appreciate your encouragement as this is the first time I’ve tried anything like this… but… never too late!

    • My grandmother always said “you’ll never learn any younger.” Think about it. During the last year of her life – when we knew she was dying of cancer – she still took classes in crafts and made things by hand.

      I so enjoy your little tea parties. You remind me of things these young whippersnappers don’t remember.

  5. Did you get another cup of tea, Judith? There’s some cookies over there… not home made, but taste pretty good. Thank you for coming back. I love to see you visiting.

  6. Norma,
    You are so right when you say that kids today actually have too many gifts and have no way to use their imagination.How right you are.I see my grand children ripping off the paper and hardly looking at the gift and looking for the next one.Life was simpler back than.Maybe that is why I enjoyed watching the Waltons.That show depicted those times.Love your stories my dear friend. Keep shining

  7. Norma,I love your stories of your life growing up.Yes,they were simpler times but I feel the children back than appreciated things so much more.Today kids are opening a Christmas gift and hardly looking at it and looking for the next one.

  8. Yes, it’s a different world now and changing all the time. You enjoyed a childhood kids can’t even imagine today!
    So happy you posted that wonderful photo! 🙂

  9. Dianne and Heather, thanks for coming by. I hope you enjoyed having tea with me! It was a simpler way of life when we had to pitch in and help where we could.

  10. Nice writing Norma! I enjoy your reminiscences and your great sketches and the interesting old photos! I don’t drink tea very often, but I’m having a coffee with you.
    Have a great day! Hugs!

  11. Hi Rob! How great that I found that picture on the Internet. It was taken in 1928, and he was just renting it at first, but then bought it. Thanks for the phone call, too,Rob, and for commenting on my blog!

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