Thursday, April 29, 2021

Last post of the semester

Well, here it is - the last letter she sent me during my first year away from home. In a couple of weeks I'll be home for the summer. 

It was a great year for me, even if my classes were not my first priority! I had a lot of fun, made some good friends, and had my first taste of independence after growing up in an ultra-protective environment. The next year, and especially the year after, will bring some hard questions and real challenges to my life - mostly good, but some not. so. much. How much of that will I reveal to my mother? Probably not very much.

Friday (April 29, 1977)

Dear Robin,

We had an awfully big rain Tuesday night and early Wednesday morning but when it stopped I floated over to First Federal and the bank. I deposited $75.00 for you. It's a while until your check comes again so I thought you might need extra.

I'm sorry if I came on a little strong about how much money you spend. I realize you didn't take any out of savings for this semester so I guess you really have done very well. Anyway, this fall you won't need to buy as many things as you did last time. And we are going to get a raise in July. Every little bit helps.

Yesterday I went with Lisa and Grant to do some running around. We had lunch at Luby's and then we went by to see their house. It's really coming along.

Early in the morning Doug and Betsy and I are going to the lake and stay until Sunday. We are going to try to get things fixed up a little. When school is out we plan to try to get the whole family up there for a weekend. Gary said they would come.

Today is a beautiful day and it's supposed to stay this way for a few days.

I'm waiting for Nora. We are going out to have some Mexican food for lunch.



You have about $380.00 left at First Fed.

Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Wedding bells, but not for me

Tuesday (April 19, 1977)

Dear Robin,

I just got back from Cotulla. Donna was in Thursday and I went home with her. She and Gary brought me back today. I've had a wonderful time. It rained a lot and Gary was working cattle but I enjoyed it all. Saturday afternoon Donna and I went to Laredo for Miss Stacey and that was a nice drive.

Have you heard from Julie? If so I guess you know all about her being engaged. I didn't see her of course but I did meet Stan. He is a nice looking man and seems friendly and nice. He is a deputy sheriff. Julie is going to go to school one more year so the wedding will be next June but Donna is already making plans. They like Stan very much.

It's getting closer to time for you to come home. I'll be glad. I hope we can spend some time at the lake. Then we'll do some cleaning and painting around here and then a lot of sewing to get you ready for school again.

Right now I have to try to get this yard cut. It rained while I was gone and the grass is growing like crazy. My garden is growing nicely, too. I've got a lot to do.



The year is winding down. Sounds like she's got my summer all planned! From what I remember, I did take a class or two at the community college that summer and I'm sure there was sewing involved. I remember going to the lake house, but I have no recollection of any cleaning and painting!

Tuesday, April 13, 2021

Some things aren't worth remembering!

 Wednesday April 13,1977

Dear Robin,

I just got your letter and no, I don't want another son-in-law at this particular time. I don't think I'll ever want one (even a kind of rich one) who almost proposes on the first date. It makes me wonder what sort of guy he is. I've always said, though, that if I haven't taught my children something about choosing friends by the time they are your age then it is too late to start.

I washed the car yesterday so of course it's raining today. The yard needs rain but it does look pretty good. My tomato plants are starting to blossom. The sweetheart rose is full of blooms.

Lila and John Monfrey are in a run off for mayor. The election is Saturday, They have been throwing a lot of mud around.

I hope you get things worked out so you can come home when Sharon comes. If it is necessary of course I can always come after you. When I think about it this year seems to be going very fast.



Oh, my goodness. How well I remember this blind date a friend in the dorm arranged for me with a guy from her home town. It was the worst date ever! We went to dinner at a steak house. He was rude to the waitress the whole time. We were then supposed to go to see the movie "Rocky" but he thought the line to get in was too long. So we drove around Lubbock for two hours, and he asked me all kinds of questions about my major and what I wanted to do with my life and every time I would answer he would excitedly say, "That's just exactly what I would want my wife to do." I could not get back to my dorm soon enough. I was conveniently "not home" for his next few calls and I guess he got the hint, or our mutual friend told him to back off. She told me later that he was "broken-hearted." Yeah, I'll bet. I just remembered that his car had been stolen at some point and was part of a high-speed chase. When he got it back, it had several bullet holes which he never got fixed - I guess he thought they were cool.

I still have never seen "Rocky."

Thursday, April 1, 2021

Bad Kitty!


Friday (April 1, 1977)

Dear Robin

John Boy got a very hard spanking this morning. I had two beautiful red roses in a vase and he turned it over for the second time.

It's been quiet around here this week. I played golf Wednesday and yesterday Lolly stayed all day with me.

I mailed your doll Monday and I hope it got there O.K. Your plant is looking fine.

I talked to Brandon Sunday - they are all fine.

I hate to waste a stamp on such a short letter but I just don't have anything else to write about.



Wow, a whole month since her last letter, but there's a reason - I was home a week for spring break in March. Actually, there was another letter that I've skipped - it was even shorter than this one and only talked about banking issues - no family (or pet) news.

Tuesday, March 9, 2021

So busy!

Wednesday March 2, 1977

Dear Robin,

These two cats are driving me crazy this morning. They are so full of pep I don't know what has got into them.

I hope the number I gave Sharon was some help to her. I couldn't go ahead and make the appointment because they asked for information I didn't know.

Sunday, Lisa, Kim and I went to Lytle. We visited Ben and Tony's grandmother. We also went out to see where they are going to build their house. They have the house staked off and will start this week. The lot is really nice and the house is going to be something else. It will be about six months before it's finished.

Yesterday Myra and I went shopping. She was looking for a crewel pillow to work on so we went to Merribee's, Scrivener's and Yarn Barn. We had lunch at the Quarter Deck. At Scrivener's we got some material to make pillows but what they had to make the backs was too expensive so we went to Cloth World and Pin Cushion. She got a piece at Pin Cushion and I have about decided to go back and get some of the same. The colors are hard to match. The material is printed in squares and each one has different birds.

After we got back I went to take Grant's birthday present. I got him a Big Mac Attack Pack which he calls a Macky Tack. I also put a lot of little toys and things in it. I think it was a big hit. Lisa made him a darling cake with clowns on it. He said that was a neat cake which we took to be high praise.

You have $453.26 at First Federal. I think it would be a good idea to get a sewing machine after you get enough saved for next fall.

Well I need to get to work.



As a sewist/crafter I'm so jealous! Five different local places to get sewing and crafting supplies! That's not the case now, but I am grateful for online shopping. 

Scrivener's was one of my all-time favorite places to shop. It started out as a lumber yard/hardware store but over the years they added a Christmas store, fine china and crystal, fabric and patterns, needlework, a boutique, gifts, and a tea room! (I have no idea who those ladies in the picture are; I found the photo online). When you sat down they brought you this little bitty cup of broth and some cheese crackers. And maybe tiny cinnamon rolls, I think. I also found the recipe for the cheese crackers online. Might have to give it a try.

When Dave and I got married we registered at Scrivener's. All of their wedding gift deliveries were made by a chauffeur driving a Rolls Royce! Unfortunately, I never got to witness this exceptional service because we had everything delivered to Dave at the church he was serving at the time. It was exciting for the ladies in the church office, though!

Scrivener's closed about 20 years ago and there's a Chili's where it used to be.

Monday, February 22, 2021

Another bank robbery

 Friday (February 18, 1977)

Dear Robin

I got the valentine and I don't know how they made one so "you." Grant brought me one also - a box of candy and it's almost all gone now.

We have been having lovely weather and I have been working outside until all my bones and muscles are so sore I can hardly get around. The ash trees are budding out and the peach tree is in bloom. I think it is still too early to plant a garden.

Armstrongs had a big fire at the Hildebrand place the other night. The warehouse was destroyed and the office and showrooms had smoke and water damage.

Now they are after my money. Brooks Field Bank was robbed the other day.

I don't quite go along with the way you and Sharon have figured out how to spend $50. That kind of logic can get you into financial trouble. I do believe you will be better off staying at the dorm. I know you are not very fond of dishwashing and other kinds of cleaning.

Well, I have rested enough now I'm either going to wash the car or work some more in the yard.



She certainly has "quit preachin' and gone to meddlin'" in her recent letters, although I have no recollection what my roommate and I were going do with $50. Buy clothes, probably.

Armstrongs was a wholesale plumbing supply company. They had been one of my Dad's competitors.

She makes me want to get outside and work in the yard! It's too early to plant a garden here, too, especially after our big snow and ice event last week. We're still under a boil water advisory, but I forget sometimes and wash my hands with tap water. It's a sad state of affairs when you have to use hand sanitizer AFTER you wash your hands.

Thursday, February 11, 2021

Be My Valentine

Friday (February 11, 1977)

Dear Robin

Happy Valentine!

Two days this week I had Lolly and she was sick so I was pretty tired and then it started raining again and I am very tired of that. It's still raining but the Rodeo Parade hasn't been called off. If I don't get some cat food today the cats will probably disown me. Maybe they will run away from home.

I finished my collage. I put all old pictures in it and it looks very interesting. I hung it where I always had my calendars.

Brandon and Valerie and Janice Marlene came to see me for a little while the other day. She is rather skinny but cute and sweet and already smiling at you. They say she never cries. Valerie liked the afghan very much.

If you do all that sewing you are going to have to work at it all the time. When will you study or don't you remember that's what you are going to college for. The trip sounds like fun but expensive. However I'll let you worry about all that. The apron strings are all loose and the nest is empty.

Lulu brought this W2 form by. She is going to A&M. She said she might go to summer school here either to SAC or UTSA. She said Tech is too far away from home.

The sky is getting lighter so I'd better get ready to go to the store before it starts raining again.



I don't blame her for being cranky. Two days with a sick toddler, constant rain, and entitled cats! 

My friend "Lulu" did end up at Tech! We were roommates for a year, in a tiny apartment in the same apartment complex that the guy who shot Ronald Reagan had lived in for a short time. He had already been evicted by the time we moved in.

Friday, January 29, 2021


 Saturday (January 29, 1977)

Dear Robin,

Valerie had a little girl Thursday evening about 8 o'clock. She weighed 7 pounds and they named her Janice Marlene. They are all doing fine. I'm going to try to go out and see her real soon.

I think I filled out this paper right. It wasn't easy because in 1975 the checks came to me part of the year. I counted as my income through September what we got together and mine alone for Oct., Nov. and Dec. because your checks started then. If this confuses you - it does me too. Your income for 1975 would be only what you got for Oct., Nov. and Dec.

I just had a visit by the cookie sellers. Callie and Karly are both selling. I got a couple of boxes from each and since no one else had been here they went down part of our street and sold all they had with them.

Lorelei and I played golf Thursday. It was a beautiful day and I played pretty good - I even chipped in from off the green for a birdie. Myra and Howard have gone on a Caribbean cruise. I think it is for about two weeks.

I talked to Theresa yesterday. She has been staying in Houston most of the time. Fred is not expected to live much longer. He is in the hospital all the time now.

Have you been watching "Roots?" I read in the paper this morning that it is going to surpass anything else that has ever been on television - that is for the number of people watching. I don't even fall asleep while it is on. 

I guess I'd better get ready to go to the post office.



Sounds like she was filling out some financial aid paperwork for me. When she talks about our "income" it's because we both received social security survivor benefits. My dad died when I was nine. I never would have been able to afford college if it had not been for social security. I received a monthly check of around $250 until I graduated. My last check arrived the week after I graduated from college and I used it to buy a plane ticket to visit my boyfriend who had moved to Arizona!

Theresa was my mom's good friend. Fred was her son and was dying of cancer. He was a church organist among other things.

You know, I've never actually seen all of "Roots." Maybe I'll see if it's binge-able anywhere. Or I could read the book, I guess. She probably had read the book already, She read a lot and at one time had wanted to become a librarian.

Thursday, January 28, 2021

January News

 Monday (January 24, 1977)

Dear Robin

I just had my picture taken but don't be so surprised it was for my driver's license.

I'm glad you got classes that you like so now get to work.

Everything has been as dull as usual around here. I think my cold is on the way out now.

I haven't heard any more about Valerie. She was to go to the hospital last Monday morning but I guess she didn't. Brandon promised to call and I haven't heard from him.

I miss having Lolly here. Nora says she is doing fine. Jody had to work almost all last week so she took Lolly and her little girl to the nursery at Bandera. Every day Lolly said they had rice, pegetti and beans. 

That girl on channel 12 news at noon's last name is Vierville and the news man is Quinn Matthews. He is young and has a baby face.

How about Tom Watson winning the Crosby? Right at the last I thought sure he was going to blow it.

I haven't heard a word from Gary and Donna. Guess I should call and see how they are. I'd like to go down there

Doug and Betsy went up and checked on the lake house. As soon as the weather gets better I want to go up there and work on the yard some. For that matter I have a lot of yard work to do here at home. The sun is shining today but it is windy and a little cool.

My stomach is growling because it's empty so I think I'll go see what I can find to eat.



Since she mentioned having her picture taken, I guess it's time to throw in a picture of my mom. Of course, this one was taken way before 1977. Probably around 1935-ish I would say. She would be mortified to know I was posting this particular picture, but it's my absolute all-time favorite picture of her, and she's not here to protest, so here it is.

Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Chickens, bread, a parakeet and a new plumber in the family

Just the normal family news. I would love some chocolate raisin nut loaf about now.

Sunday (January 16, 1977)

Dear Robin

I haven't had time to write to you any sooner as I've been rather busy.

Thursday morning Bobby brought Lolly and Marky by on his way to work. He picked them up on his way home then brought them back Friday morning and they came back after them Saturday evening about 7:30.

Trina won fifth place with her chickens and fifth place with her quick bread entry. She got a little over $70 for both. She made a chocolate raisin nut loaf. I had a piece of the trial one she made and it was real good. Her five chickens that she entered weighed over 23 pounds and the heaviest ones there weighed only 25. The entries were from first grade through seniors from Bandera and Medina. I think Nora said there were around 300 chickens entered.

John Boy was a big help in taking care of the kids - he took the nipple off Marky's bottle down off the drain twice. He and Jim spend a lot of time at the back door watching the birds at the feeder. You will never guess what kind of bird was there all afternoon one day - a beautiful green parakeet.

Doug called to tell me he passed his test this time. He now has his journeyman's license and should be able to make more money.

Well this old mother's cupboard is very bare so I have to go to the store. Write soon.



Monday, January 18, 2021

Back at school

 Tuesday (January 11, 1977)

Dear Robin

I haven't been out of the house since you left - my cold has been pretty bad. It's not much better but I'll have to go to the store and get cat food. The cats don't much like grits.

I can get the money for you but I don't know how much you need and I can't find that deposit slip you sent me before.

The day you left Nora was on the way over here after work and down on Sunset a lady came out of a driveway and ran into her. It messed up her new car and upset her quite a bit. She was too nervous to drive home so she and Lolly stayed here that night.

I'm working on filling out that paper you left. As soon as I can determine how much Social Security we got in 1975 I'll send it to you.

It's very windy here today but I guess I'd better brace myself and go on out.



I can relate. Nothing drives me to the grocery store quicker than being out of cat food.