Archive | April 2014


1935 PrinceBack to Vancouver


About 1935 Dad decided to move us back to Vancouver where there would be a chance for him and the two boys to get jobs. That wasn’t going to happen in the



And that’s when my sister and Al Campbell, who owned the next ranch, decided to get married. But it was time to sell the cattle, so he was to come to Vancouver after he sold the ones that were an increase for the year.


That meant a cattle drive of fifty miles out to Williams Lake…a three or four day trip…not the way its done now  in the back of a truck!


They went to see Rev. Braden at Ryerson United Church to “ talk about the wedding”… but didn’t just talk about it… they got married. .and after a few days they went back up to his ranch in Beaver Valley.


Summer holidays when I was out of school I would go and spend a couple of months with them. My sister was only seven years older than me!

1935 Norma on King

In those days… you checked the newspaper ads… someone would be traveling to that area and wanted a passenger who would help pay for the gas! My first try at this we had a couple of flat tires so we were late getting to the 153 Mile House where Al was to meet me…he had to leave to go milk cows and would pick me up in Horsefly the next day after I traveled with the mail carrier to get there. It was quite an adventure for a 12 year old! We were not like todays pre-teens.

1935 haying

I loved those holidays.  I helped my sister, but most of all I loved being able to ride most days. I say “most days” because I had to do what Lena wanted before I could ride…and I had to ask her if I could ask Al if I could ride his horse!


One day she wasn’t going to let me ask…I hadn’t done something she wanted me to do. Al was sitting there, looking out the open door…he said “Heh Norma! You see that stump out there in that swampy area? Well, go get a horse and see if its a bear!” Lena would not contradict anything Al said! So I got to ride. I loved that guy!!!


I was part of the hay crew…I drove the rake team..raked and then reraked the whole meadow. Then I was driving the team that took the hay  from the field to the barn, or hay stack. When I was leaving Al gave me Five dollars for what I had done… that was a LOT of money in those days.





When our children are small and everything is new, even their vocabulary is all new.  Some words come easy, while others are much more difficult.


When I was around seven or eight my gardening neighbour tried to teach me the names of all of her flowers. I was quick to learn, but there was one that I could not pronounce…nemesium….


I do remember that she would be out in the garden transplanting ones from the nursery…always on a rainy day…then she would go in and have a mustard bath and never seemed to catch a cold from doing it.


I wonder how I can change subjects so quickly?


So back to what I started out to write!


One of my sons had a couple of words that he couldn’t say at first…Pyterpater and Skeeverskyver.

Did you have one of those? Or maybe both?


I remember paying fifty dollars for a ‘peviously owned’

Pyterpater, and was really happy to have it.


I was sorry when my husband taught him how to say the words properly!




Something was said today about warts and how to get rid of them.


This is back in 1930’s  and goes back further, but I don’t know how far. My dad had two different solutions for getting rid of a wart.


First  one: you ‘steal’ a dish towel and go in a very dark place. There you rub the wart be hind your back with the dish towel…and it will go away.!


No dish towels around so lets switch over to a new moon. When there is a new moon, you go out in the dark and pick up a stone, then use that stone to rub the wart, behind your back. With this action you say “Welcome New Moon , I’m glad you’ve come” repeating this three times, then throw the stone away behind you.Wart will disappear.!


I don’t have a medical license, so be careful who you tell about this!!  Funny thing is…they did disappear!

Bath time.

Bath Time!   I talked to my niece in Quesnel last night… that’s up in the Cariboo, where it is still cold and still has lots of snow hanging on. That means they have to feed the cattle every day, and probably will have to for another month. 1979:05:00 Brigden cattle10 This is about the end of the calving season… they still have two more cows to go! They will be glad when that’s over, as they have had to be ready day or night when a cow was calving.

Monday there will be a bull sale in Williams Lake… they will be taking three of theirs.  Now you don’t just load them in a truck and drive to ‘The Lake.’ That would be too easy… you want them to look their very best….and how do you make that happen?

You give them a bath! All three of them!!!   Did you ever give a bull a bath?  Maybe your pet dog….but not a bull! Not me…no way would I get anywhere near one of them! But someone has got to do it… and that happens to be my niece and her husband! It would be pretty cold out there today, and add that to the job….I’ll stay home!Brigden bull

A beautiful, sunny day!

Maybe I should take a ‘run’ down to the beach…its only a couple of blocks away, but a steep hill going down… and it seems even steeper coming back. Willie, my motorized chair, would never make it! Better not go!!

My mind has been roving around, seeing what it could find. Something I said made me think of my second brother, Horace…who was ten years older than me, and was my pal. He died in an accident a week before his twenty-fifth birthday, when I was fifteen.

Mom used to tell this story about him. One day he came running in to her and excitedly exclaimed “I found it! I found it!”   “What did you find?” my mom asked?”   “I found  my whistle, I found my whistle!”  he proudly replied.

“Kids say the darnedest things”…Art Linkletter said that with his TV show years ago.  images

When I Grow Up.

What I Want To Be When I Grow Up!


At what age will I grow up? I have to know that to get the answer to my question… will I be doing what I want to do when I grow up? This is the question posed to me by my friend who was helping me find what to write about!


Think about it!  Are you grown up… or all grown up! I don’t think I’m all grown up yet… still things I want to do. It’s hard to think about it right now… it’s time to go down to the dining room for supper along with all the other people living here in Assisted Living.


Okay! Had  my supper… waffles with a berry sauce..delicious!


There are a lot of things that at one time or the other I wanted to do. Like go to art school. No money. Like learn to play the piano. Yes, I do play the organ, but that has the chords all in one… not like the piano where you have to play each note.


My two brothers and sister all had piano lessons.The boys didn’t want to take them, but had to. Then we moved up to the Cariboo… no piano… no money.


gt3000So, I was working at the bank in Langley… and I had some of my own Money! There was a woman with two daughters that was teaching piano from her home, so I decided to take some lessons. No piano, but I had a bit of money. She was teaching music for  older students. (I was twenty at the time.) Anyway, her kids got some kind of skin infection and she had to quit teaching! End of my lessons.


I have a keyboard now, and I play it like an organ!


Well, so much for answering that question I mentioned at the beginning of this post. Do you remember it?  I don’t!

This and That.

This and that. I’m tired of thinking so far back to my school days…that was a long time ago! Maybe some thing a little closer in time would be better.

When my three sons were small, I took a course in candy making and cake design by correspondence. I really enjoyed both courses. My dad told my sister that I made the best fudge he ever tasted! He never told me, because I might stop making it the same way!

I needed lots of practice making the cakes. Well, not making them, but decorating them. So I made 9 x 12 cakes, iced and decorated and sold them for two dollars. That paid for the ingredients! I had lots of orders for birthday cakes. Every year I made a cake and took it to one of the boy’s classes. All three got a special cake every year. Each time the principal would wheel the cake around to every room, with me in tow, to show all the kids what I had done. Anytime there was something special on at the school, my neighbour, Ruby, and I were asked to cater it . It was something we both enjoyed. 1959 :08 Gingerbread houseOne Christmas Danny asked me to make a gingerbread house for their party. After making the cake, i filled it with extra cookies so everyone would get some of it. Well they started eating the food, and the teacher saved the ‘house’ to the last. Dany wouldn’t eat anything because he was going to fill up on gingerbread. Poor guy…the teacher decided that they should take the cake to the Children’s Hospital, and Danny ended up with nothing to eat at the party.