Shoes, Baby Sitters, And Such!

Even though things were still tough, and money was hard to come by. My parents always made sure that I had “my own” shoes, even though they were expensive…$5.95!  I wore hand–me- down clothes for a few years, but never hand- me- down shoes.

There was no such thing as baby sitters in those days, but every Saturday afternoon I took Harry McLaughlan to the matinee at the Kerrisdale Theater. He was 5 years old, so didn’t have to pay to get in. His parents paid my way… ten cents… and five cents to spend on candy.

The Theatre had draws at the evening performances. One night I went with my two brothers, and Clendon won a turkey, and Horace won a set of dishes! We were so excited taking them home to Mom and Dad.

I was thirteen by now. Horace worked for the printer, Tommy McPhee, setting type. His shop was two doors from where we lived. When Tommy had to leave the shop on business he would get me to come in after school to answer the phone… and I was paid ten cents each time I went. My first paying job! The wonderful bonus he gave me was all the “off cuts” from the paper and cardboard. I made scrap books in all different sizes with home made paste. Maybe that’s why I still love paper!

About a half block from us in the other direction, Miss McCulloch had little store… like a corner store only it was in the middle of the block., and she lived in behind. Horace and I would shovel the snow off her sidewalk, and carry the sawdust in for her sawdust burner every day. She always gave us each a chocolate bar for our help. Chocolate bars were five cents each.  Another paying job.!

I remember saving the silver paper from the candy bars, and cutting it real thin to use as icicles on our Christmas tree. We covered cardboard with it and cut out stars, too.

That year, we had three feet of snow over night. I plowed through it to Maple Grove school, only to have them decide to close the school for the day, and we were sent home!

I remember my mom curling my hair with curling irons every day before I went to school. She had to heat them in the wood stove.

Rambling right along!  That’s how my mind works.


8 thoughts on “Shoes, Baby Sitters, And Such!

  1. Hi Norma, I’m just heading out for the day, just have time for a quick comment….
    HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!! I hope the sun is shining your way – have a great day! 🙂
    love, Norma

  2. Beautiful memories and sketches Norma!
    Happy Birthday to You!! ♫ ♫
    This isn’t a major one is it? If so, CONGRATULATIONS!!!
    If not, congratulations! 🙂
    I hope your back is healing up well. Love and hugs!

    • Hey Greg! When you get to my age all birthdays are major ons! So Congratulate me anyway. 89! Thanks for your wishes and for coming by to see me. Love and hugs.

  3. I’m sure you appreciated getting those “paying” jobs because they were probably few and far between. And you were very resourceful with what you received. I still think homemade Christmas tree ornaments are more meaningful than the store-bought kind. 🙂

    • Hello Carol. Time to settle down for a cup of tea… I’ve had a busy day with two birthday cakes. Both were cheese cake kinds! I’m stuffed. I even had a “paying job” today, with one of the tenants who commissioned me to do a sketch, and was pleased with my effort! Thanks for coming by and your comment!

  4. Hi, Norma – I loved your stories today. A great sense of place, lots of characters I hadn’t heard of before. Lots of opportunities for you. I can just imagine how delighted your parents were with the winnings – what an uplifting event!
    Hope you are feeling a little better now….

  5. Good morning Heather. Maybe we have tome for a cup of tea before you have to go to work? I’m nibbling on a birthday sandwich that I kept over from yesterday,Thanks for coming by and for your comment!

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