Grandma Mellie's Scrapbook
Copyright © 2003, Michael S. Cole, M.D.

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Springtime Memories

    Spring has finally arrived in the Ozarks ... and we are ready for it! Our winter was very disagreeable at times.
    The flowers are so pretty now; just looking at them gives one a calm, peaceful state of mind.
    How can anyone doubt there is a God Who created everything and "saw that it was good." Jesus must have loved flowers, too, for He said in His word, "Consider the lillies of the fields. They toil not, neither do they spin, and Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these."
    As I live within a mile of my childhood homeplace and also near my grandma's old place, memories are still vivid, as I frequently pass by the old homes. One of my sons has a beautiful new home on my grandma's place. It is what I call "a picture home" though, to me, it doesn't look as homelike as did my grandma's.
    I never knew my grandpa, as he died when my mother was nine years old. At the time of his death, they lived in a log cabin, but grandpa had lumber on the ground to build a new house. The neighbors met and built the house for the widow. It was typical of the way they were built then, with large rooms and fireplaces at each end. Grandma was a nice housekeeper, but she'd rather work outside. I guess that's where I get my love of the outdoors.
    How well I remember grandma's flowers, especially in the spring. When I was old enough to appreciate flowers, her's had a special meaning to me. She didn't know anything about landscaping, so she had a yard full of hollyhocks and a bleeding-heart on the path to the gate. She had roses, too, one a beautiful yellow and the old-fashioned velvet rose. I have a velvet rose bush that came from her yard.
    She had jonquils that to this day come up, but are mowed down when the lawn is mowed. After 60 years, I can still see them in my memory.
    I had a cousin who was like a sister to me and we would meet at grandma's quite often to play. When the hollyhocks bloomed, we loved to make ladies from the blooms. We put the flowers on a stick, many at a time, to make ruffled dresses. Then we made hats of the leaves, using thorns or small twigs to hold them together.
    We loved dolls, too, and spent many hours making dresses for them. My, what lovely times we had! I still like dolls and have a collection of 24, some of them china-head dolls.
    I had another dear friend and I loved to go spend the night with her. She lived about a mile from my home. The next morning, she always came "a piece of the way" with me, as we used to say. There was an old empty house we passed and often stopped by. One time I remember we caught a little lamb and took it upstairs to play with it. There was a window out and the little lamb got loose and jumped through it. We were almost too frightened to look, but the lamb got up and ran off. We were certainly relieved to know we hadn't injured or killed the little thing.
    The old house had a cave nearby. There was a spring in the cave and an old trough that had petrified. We decided to get some of the old trough, though I can't remember why we wanted it. There were a couple of steps down into the cave, which we bravely went down. While we were trying to get a piece of the trough, we heard a growling on a high ledge. We didn't stop to look back, but hurried out of there!
    Those were happy days and it's great to relive them in my memory ... carefree days, forever gone but not forgotten.
    Take time from your busy life to enjoy the beauty of springtime, especially the flowers ... perhaps they'll bring back happy memories for you.

Mellie Smith

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