Here, gathered in our beloved South Dakota, are a few members of our Williamson / Mattson Clan. Charles and Luella are to be blamed (be kind, they didn't know what they were doing). We're generally a happy bunch and somewhat intelligent (notwithstanding our tenuous grasp on reality). I'm also proud to say that most of us still have our teeth.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

More from Christmas 1985 at the Williamson Home on 38th Street

 eFrom the Fortress of Solitude
Pleasant Grove

Hello All,
I'm looking out the Fortress' Great Room window at a smoky Utah Valley below.  Smoke from several wild fires is caught in the valley, reducing visibility and giving the air a campfire aroma.  No wonder I'm in the mood for smores.

Pleasant Grove banned 4th of July fireworks here at the Fortress and surrounding neighborhoods.  Our homes sit dangerously close to the mountains.  One firework shot in the wrong direction could set the mountain ablaze along with Jilane and Kevin's home and, heaven forbid, the Fortress.  We will have to be content to sit on the deck, light our sparklers and watch the fireworks from below.  The town puts on a good show at the junior high school beneath the Fortress.

I'm hoping the western fires are far away from all our family and friends.

Two posts back I posted pictures from my 1985 visit home for Christmas.  I neglected to post a few other pictures I found in another file on my photo CD.  Today I post the remaining pictures.  Sit back and enjoy these parting snapshots from 27 years ago.        

Grandma Mattson invited us to her apartment for dinner at the Nearly There Assisted Living Center for the Elderly and Confused west of Rapid City's Bacon Park.  I'm sure it was to celebrate my visit from Utah.

"Grandma, can I help."  Annette said in her helping voice.  Grandma glanced in my direction.  I grabbed my camera and caught her expression, an expression I've seen many times and knew exactly how to read.

"Oh child, you shouldn't have asked that question," Grandma's expression replied.  "Where do I begin?  There's putting away the groceries, cleaning the bathroom, vacuuming the carpet, washing the dishes, peeling the potatoes........"

Annette never made that mistake again.   

 Lisa with her Dad Charles in Grandma's living room posing nicely for the camera while Cindernettie was on all fours scrubbing the kitchen floor.  While modest by most standards, Grandma's tree did the job supplying a Christmas atmosphere to the setting.  The Nearly There Assisted Living Center for the Elderly and Confused wasn't too keen on Christmas decorations.   The year before an elderly gentleman electrocuted himself by chewing on a set of Christmas tree lights strung along the serving line in the cafeteria.

"Who's going to help me clean up?" Grandma asked.  Annette was out the door and down the hallway in a heartbeat, nearly knocking down two of the Center's more unstable residents.  Luella wasn't listening.  The TV was on. 

"I'm too full," Lisa complained.

It was understood Charles was there for the meal only.  That left me and I was glad to do it.  I was always glad to help Grandma.  She was a fine old gal, fun to tease because she gave it right back.  Oh, and those looks of her's were priceless.  Let's hope she doesn't have reason to give us the look from the photo above when we pass over the river Jordan and meet her on the other side.       

Annette back from her daring escape.  Her cheeks were pinched raw by every geriatric she encountered in her travels through the Nearly There's halls and cafeteria. 

 Lisa wanting something back Luella had stolen.  Luella was in a jovial mood.  Can't get over the hair.

Back at the Williamson home on 38th Street.  I believe this was Bo on Christmas morning enjoying his rawhide bone.  I'm not an animal lover so I never remembered many of the family's pets, except for our nearly fossilized cat Inky.  Inky was our cat during my teen years.  She had arthritis and could hardly walk.  She had no interest in anyone or anything and threw up hair balls whenever she attempted to navigate the length of the living room.

Inky gave the family multiple clues she was ready for that final visit to the vet but no one paid any attention. One afternoon she'd had enough and took decisive action in the driveway.   Those who witnessed the event saw Inky sitting at the bottom of the outside porch near the station wagon.  She was waiting for car to back out of the driveway.  Just as the car started to move, she struggled to stand and hobbled with head held high behind the front left tire.   

She went out on her own terms.  You have to respect her for that.

Luella on Christmas morning.  I believe she's holding one of the presents I gave her - a nice Pyrex casserole dish.  She's reading the manual on the dish's proper use.

Luella didn't do a lot of cooking in those days.  In fact, if my memory serves me correctly,  she stopped cooking when dad brought home our first microwave oven (hence the reason for reading the directions to the cookware).  

Lisa with her haul.  Notice nearly all clothes.
Finally, a Williamson had made it into the IN crowd at school, hence the need to
dress in something more up to date than Garage Sale Chic.

 And Annette with her's.  Notice nearly all dolls and their accessories.
Annette was always in training to be a World Class Mom.
(And no one doubts that she's made it.  Annette IS a World Class Mom) 

Baby Jazmine in the kitchen waiting for something to eat.
We were all waiting for Luella to finish reading the Pyrex bakeware manual and cook us up
something completely delicious.

Kim Williamson DelGrosso with her newborn Autumn.
They don't get cuter than this folks.

 Oops, I spoke too soon.  Here she is again, the one and only Jazmine!!
Look at those baby blue eyes.
And what's even better?  She has something to eat and IS a happy camper (an ice cream cone no less, Luella was having trouble with the Pyrex bakeware.  It wouldn't fit in the microwave.  I tried to explain it was meant for the oven.
"Do I have one of those?" she asked.

Grandma Luella nearly dropping baby Jazmine.

The girls in the morning.  Ashley, Amber and Nichole.

And finally, Jazmine with cousins Brandon and Forrest DelGrosso

Happy Days....


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