Years ago, I sat down and asked my grandma a whole bunch of questions, and recorded the answers. I'm finally getting around to sharing it with you. If you are anything like me, you've heard a lot of stories, but they got so complicated I wasn't sure I understood them right. This is my attempt to understand the life of my wonderful grandmother. Enjoy!
Did you work when you were first married?
No. I had a job when I got married but I never went back to it. I'd been working but I never went back to it.
Did marriage surprise you then?
I wasn't prepared for marriage. I didn't know anything. I had no brothers so I was very naive. I was too naive.
When did my dad come along?
Two years later. I was married at 18, your dad was born at 20 and by then we'd moved here--your grandpa was out of the service and we'd moved up to Heber. I'm a city gal like you've heard. I had all the conveniences of everything. We had gas. We had lights. We had indoor plumbing. I went to Heber. They didn't have gas, they had a coal stove. They didn't have indoor plumbing. Oh...they didn't have anything. It was just like Grapes of Wrath. It was like going from 1945 to 1919 or something. It was horrible. So then we lived with his parents.
Was that hard?
Very hard cause I'm a night person. I sleep late in the morning. I still am a night person and they got up at 4 or 5 o'clock in the morning, and his stepmother--your grandpa's stepmother, because his mother died when he was young. His stepmother--oh, she was friendly and everything, but there was no bonding at all. We'd get up at 4 or 5 in the morning, fix a big breakfast and then Boyd would go off all day long until lunchtime. Of course, as soon as breakfast was over--she had a big coal stove, you know, one of those great big ones and when breakfast was over she started preparing lunch cause usually ouy'd have a whole bunch of men doing chores together--they'd help each other, or I don't know...She'd make a big, big, big, big, big lunch. And I don't eat breakfast...still don't and I didn't then, and then this great big lunch that we'd prepared and then there were all these dishes to do and then dinnertime they didn't come in til dark. Oh...I was never so miserable in my life. So anyway, then I was pregnant. we used to sleep upstairs and they didn't heat the upstairs. It was wintertime and we had blankets up that high and I was cold and I always had to go to the bathroom. Oh I hated it. I wanted California back.
When did you move back?
Right after Dale was born. We moved back to California after your dad was born and I was glad. But your grandpa wasn't happy. He missed the deer season and he missed all sorts of things. So we stayed in California for a year or something or rather, and he wasn't happy so we moved back to Utah and we build that little cinderblock. I said "I'm not going to move back in with your folks." We lived with them for awhile and then we built that little two room cinderblock. No bathroom. An outhouse by the chicken coop. we were there for a while and again I was unhappy so we moved back to California again and he became unhappy and we moved back to Utah again and then Steve was born. There's two years between Dale and Steve. So Steve was born. We moved back to California. I guess we didn't move back in with his parents while we were building the little cinderblock. We rented down the street a little bit. We rented half a house and we had a coal stove--a big coal stove, and I remember I had the two kids. Steve was just little and Dale was 2 years older. Dale was about 4 and steve was about 2 and Boyd would get up in the morning at 4:00. He'd get the coal stove going. Well, I couldn't keep that coal stove burning. I couldn't cook on it. I--the house was cold. I was miserable. He'd leave at 4 and I wouldn't see him again until late at night.
And I remember, one day I decided to go back to California. It was wintertime. I packed a suitcase. There was snow. It was wintertime and town is about--what?--5 miles into town? Anyway, I was mad and unhappy. I had Steve in my arms and Dale by the hand and the suitcase--he was helping me carry the suitcase and we were walkig to town to the bus depot. I remember Ken Ryan came by and stopped. "Where are you going?"
"I'm walking! Getting on a bus and I'm going home!" He talked me into staying--waiting til Boyd got home, you know. So I went back to the house and he started the coal stove up again. Anyway, after that we moved back to California and we bought a house there in California. We had a house there and I planted all the trees and the shrubs. I planted ivy all around the mailbox. I planted a pine tree and I planted rose bushes all around. I'll have to tell you why. We had this cute little house, and back whe Dale was ready to start to school--we registered him for Kindergarten but we decided to move back to Utah and he would build--we had the cinderblock house still--but he said he would build a bathroom, which he did--we moved back and he built a bathroom on. And years later we went back--years later we drove past this house and the pine tree was about 20 feet tall and the ivy was all--I don't think people had done--all my rose bushes were everywhere. I remember taking a picture. Anyway, we moved back and Dale started school and we stayed and never went back to California again except to visit.