Ah, a brand, spanking new year to celebrate. Clean, bright and shiny with nothing to tarnish it for a short time. Once the clock says twelve midnight, we say good-bye to 2016 and hello to 2017. When I was a young girl, this year would have seemed like it would take forever to get here. I would be an old lady then(or older lady, anyway.) There would be flying cars and robots doing all our work for us. Well, it hasn’t turned out quite like that, but things sure have change a lot since I was a child.
When I was a child, we still had television antennas and three or four channels. We had no indoor plumbing and we heated with wood and coal oil. We did have electricity and telephones but the phones were connected to the wall and we could only take the phone as far as the cord would stretch. No telephone conversations that the whole family could not hear. My daddy drove a big old station wagon and we could sit clear in the back without seat belts and even lay down and take a nap. I was raised on a farm where the animals were fed and cared for before my daddy would come in to eat. We ate our meals around a table with conversations and no cellphones to interrupt. Now, it’s the other way around. Conversations interrupt people texting on their phones. I don’t call that progress. I call that sad. Every meal was freshly prepared by my mother, who was the best cook in the county, if not the state. Never any takeout meals. No McDonald’s or Wendys when I was growing up. Our little town did have a restaurant, but I don’t think our family ever ate in it. We washed dishes by hand together, drying them with a towel and talking as we worked. Until we had a bathroom installed, we washed from a wash basin in the kitchen. My mother would cover all the windows with newspaper so no one could see us bathing.
I enjoyed growing up on my daddy’s farm. I think I had one of the best childhoods anyone could wish for. I spent hours in the barn playing. I dreamed of having a horse and every Christmas I always thought I would get one. I did get one, but my brother helped me buy him and I will be forever indebted to him for being such a good big brother for helping me get my horse. I roamed the farm playing with all the animals, even the baby pigs and calves that were born in the Spring. I rode my horse on the country roads and even into town. I worked in our garden, fed the chickens, helped my mother clean the house. We were always cleaning house, it seemed. We washed clothes in a wringer washer and I loved putting the clothes through the wringer, being careful not to catch my fingers in it. We hung our clothes out to dry. I still miss the scent of air dried clothes, fresh from the clothesline My mother didn’t get a washer and dryer until after I got married and left home. Mother did the washing every Monday and I helped do the ironing on Tuesdays. Fridays we always had hamburgers for dinner which was a treat for me. Saturday dinners were always fish. Sunday dinners were almost always fried chicken or beef roast. Saturday night and Sunday night suppers we got to eat on a tray in front of the television and it was the only time I got to drink a coke.
I never thought I would grow up, grow old and not live on a farm. I still have a farmer’s daughter’s blood running through my veins and I always will. I loved when every new year came. I always got a diary for Christmas and loved writing on the very first page about the very first day of the brand new year. Some day I will share some of my diaries writings. But not all of them! Some things must remain private!
We don’t know what this new year will bring. I know we will get a new family member through marriage. Will I get a new puppy? More chickens? Will David and I journey someplace new? Will we lose a loved one? Will we keep our good health? Will I gain a new friend? Every day when I get up, I pray God will send me another friend. I pray for all my friends. Some have had a bad year and some have had good years. I have lost several friends in 2016. We have seen several celebrities die. Ones I watched when I was a girl. We don’t know what life will bring us in the coming year, but we can know one thing. We can have a relationship with the very One who gave us life and put our trust in Him. My hope is in Jesus Christ. Whatever befalls me, He has my back. I am not alone in this walk through life.
So for all of you reading this, I pray for God’s blessings on you and that this year will bring you peace, joy and love. Love being the greatest of these.
Happy New Year, friends. Bye.