Tehkummah Talk & Times

“Those were the Days”

Today it’s wallpaper I’m thinking about

From the days of my youth and all

When I helped my mother on a bright sunny day

As she changed the look of the wall.

We’d mix up a pail of water and flour

The paste that we used those days

To hold the paper there to the wall

If it stayed up, we were amazed.

Sometimes bad words were emitted

Especially if Dad was about

Mom would get him to smooth the high spots

He was taller there was no doubt.

I’ll never forget the time or the day

When the ceiling Dad thought should be covered

I learned some acrobatics and some new words

That were different from all the others.

Well, the ceiling was wood tongue and groove

It just wouldn’t hold in place

With wallpaper falling down wrapping around

And sticky glue over our face.

And then when the final rumpled chunk

Was fed to the old box stove at hand

While I washed the ceiling free of paste

Not quite the way it was planned.

Cabbage roses design a big thing then

Or leaves, squares, flower or vines.

Most everyone’s parlor looked the same

It was a sign of the times.

Oh, I don’t know if every house looked the same,

It’s the way I remember it now

Overnight it could change to a whole new place

Cover the old to make it look new.

Rarely we peeled the underneath off

It was insulation, you know

It helped keep us warmer in wintertime

When it was forty below.

Years later when the reno

was done

We even found newspa-

pers there

Back to the early nin-

teen o’one

So interesting and rare,

Oh, the tales they could


All those wall paper la-


Of family problems and


Different times, hard-

ships and illnesses

And troubles, there was


Things like hand pump

washboard and more

Saturday brush scrub-

bing the kitchen wood


We’d sing as we paste wax

and dance and shine

With Dad’s old wool 

socks, it would look so


Stoking the fire, hauling

in wood

Canning the food, that

tasted so good.

Smells of the soup and


When we came from


When real school was


Three R’s and Golden


Lots of board games, fam-

ily happy time

That old kitchen table

and family of nine.

Kids doing homework by

lamplight and such.

Do today’s young folk do

very much?

Push button or compute lazy it seems

Do they even know how

to follow their dreams?

They should take a day to

go back in time.

Where am I going to go

with this rhyme?

Oh yes, it all started by

thinking of walls

One thing in my mem0-

ries aged recall.

It brings loved ones near

as I think through my


Reflection brings smiles

through my tears.

– Pat Hall


January 11, 2020

When I wrote this, as you older folks may remember, I missed a lot of stuff too. Outdoor chores on the farm, piglets or chicks behind the wood stove, nice kittens, puppies. Lots, right?

Perhaps the young Amish folk still have a taste of it, but grocery stores weren’t all that handy. Were people more content? Lots of neighbourly visits too, wood bees, threshing crews, huge family gardens (some), pulling mustard, coiling hay, stooking grain and lots of fun/singing, creating, imagining, wishing, hoping, dreaming. (Oh yeah, the five mile walk a day to school and back, miles!)

I just finished the book my sis Susan gave me for Christmas. I could have/should have added a couple of stories. So interesting, Petra,  he was Mom’s and my doctor from 1954, Dr. Bailey, so interesting!

Hey, how nice to see those lengthening daylight hours. A promise.

Well, today it’s “Baby Ruth” chocolate bars hanging on the doorknob from Lydia. Yesterday, Daisy calls bearing gifts. Am I lucky or what! Thanks.

We sang happy anniversary to Lorna at Pauline’s UCW meeting on Tuesday, January 14. I forgot to ask how many years! We had eight members today. Betty Russell is our new president for this year; Pauline, secretary, and Lorna, treasurer. We had a fair lot of ground to cover, but we always have fun get togethers. Lynda Garness stepped down to vice president. I’m still the one who sends cards out for our group. Have I done it forever? We always finish with refreshments and good food. Sometimes I think there is more than ever since we’ve cut back. Ha!

Heard today that Dawn Size had passed away. She hadn’t been well for quite some time, had had a liver transplant. Sympathy to the Size family. Keith and Anne still live in the home in Sandfield where this family was raised.

When speaking to Judy this past week, she says Bob is doing OK. He is in Mindemoya hospital right now but will be going for therapy soon.

I have to say more about Nora Hall. She was a resident of the Manor for quite some time. A busy, caring part of Tehkummah Township for forever. She was active in the United Church, Sunday School superintendent for years, part of our UCW, president and secretary. A very active part of the origin of the Tehkummah Triangle Club. Both her and her husband Ozzie, and we called each other “Mrs. Hall” jokingly though we were not related in any way (unusual in this area, right?) A very community-spirited person, good neighbour. I was so pleased to have Carol Lee drop in Friday. She had the loveliest double photo framed of their grandchild (with the grandparents). She had recently got it. Carol is so kind and caring. I had a feeling I had already written up the cribbage scores but… Wednesday, January 15, 17.5 tables: high hand, Keith, 24; first, Gib and Florence, 948; second, Laura and Patrysha, 943; third, Cal and I, 919; low, Brad and Dorothy, 830; door, Margaret, Noreen and Doris.

Thursday euchre, seven and a half tables, Margaret McC and Jeanine were on KP duty, good lunch. High hand, Dorothy and Ken, 85; second, Brad and Bill, 76; third, Hank and Pat (me), 71; fourth, Donna and Eva and Bob and Hugh, 70; low, Donna and Eila, 43 (we had some confusion?); lone hands, Simon and Marg and Donna and Eva, tied with six and Brad and Bill; door prize, 50/50, Dave James (again?). Apparently, he’s on a winning streak in this new year!

I have heard today too when I’d have to go to Toronto for my tests.

Sympathy to the family of Irene James who passed away today, so I heard at euchre. She was a sweet lady with a good sense of humour. She had spent the last year or so at the Wiky nursing home.

You always need something to remind you of your wedding (18th) day and every time it snows? Congratulations Liz and Earl. I had every intention of going to the wedding and the reception. I’m sure it didn’t take the shine off, or perhaps like me, it kept a few from attending. Anyway, happiness always.

Calls from Helen, Lyle and Joan and Sherry did my “Bell” intervention.

I recently heard of the death of Rodney Simpson’s mother. Sympathy to the family. Thinking of you.

Uber driver Norma, right to my door and the church and my door again. Saves my gas! Thanks. Save my food too, after a nap I invited myself to the neighbours. A pyramid game with Skylar before supper, a Tiki game with Ray, Tara and Jacob. Good games, close. Jacob and I each won one. I was the winner all the way around!!

Aaah, TV.