Saturday, December 17, 2011

Christmas 1946

The Christmas season brings back many memories, especially those when I was a kid. I fondly remember Christmas, 1946. We were all happy that World War II was over and that my several cousins who fought overseas had returned home safely. Mother was happy that she could once more buy sugar and return to her much beloved Christmas baking (sugar was one of many items rationed during the war).

And the entire family was especially thankful that come the next spring we would have electricity on our farm. In looking forward to the 1946 Christmas, my brothers and I spent hours paging through the Sears Christmas catalog, looking for toys that required electricity. Battery operated toys had not yet appeared.

We found an erector set and together agreed (a rare moment among my brothers and me) that we wanted it for Christmas. An erector set was one where you built cranes and other such important machines. A tiny electric motor came with the set.

On Christmas morning, we found the erector set under the tree, complete with electric motor. We assembled a first rate crane, but, alas, we had to wait until the following April before we could operate it with our little electric motor. That’s when we got electricity for the first time, and how things changed after that. But that’s a story for another time.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS: A most Merry Christmas to all.

CHECK THIS OUT: My newest book, Garden Wisdom (Wisconsin Historical Society Press) is out. It’s all about vegetable gardening from seed selection to keeping away the critters. Included are a number of Ruth’s favorite fruit and vegetable recipes. Check at your local bookstore.

January 11 and 12, Midwest Farm Show, LaCrosse Center, LaCrosse, WI. Details to come. Speaking on both days.

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