Cheery greetings go out, but the sun is hidden! It can’t even try to sneak in, because it is a solid overcast! Of course, we all rejoice that all has been calm, which allows us to make plans for cleaning out the storm shelters or safe areas in our homes. Now is the time to get those safe rooms, cellars and closets ready for the Oklahoma stormy weather!

Cheery greetings go out, but the sun is hidden! It can’t even try to sneak in, because it is a solid overcast! Of course, we all rejoice that all has been calm, which allows us to make plans for cleaning out the storm shelters or safe areas in our homes. Now is the time to get those safe rooms, cellars and closets ready for the Oklahoma stormy weather!  Of course, today, we can give thanks for the good slow rain, which our ranchers, farmers, and gardeners, along with even the soil, was all crying out for rain. Moisture is needed to get the soil ready for the spring crops and gardens. I thought some lovely spring weather was on the horizon, but guess it will be chilly for a few days. But, to all the female population, maybe the weather will be so nice, just so most can show off their new clothes, shoes, and maybe a few hats will be showing up. Of course, in today’s society, hats aren’t a big fashion thing, but it sure was up until 1980’s. Of course, when I was a little girl, we all wore what was called bonnets or later, our Easter hats. At that time, all females wore hats and Easter bonnets on Easter, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. In fact, I have two shelves of hats and several large boxes of hats stored away in closets, with mothballs preserving them. We had to have either, white or black, patent leather shoes, white gloves, and a new Easter dress.  During those years, I recall mother preparing chicken and dressing, several pies and a large coconut cake, to take for the church dinner.  The men got some empty oilfield barrels, set up on the church lawn, and laid boards across, ready to use for tables. After making sure the tables were steady and firmly placed, the men and teen-age boys carried out several home-made benches from the small frame, wooden church building; then, placed around the tables. There were plenty of post-oak and black-jack trees, to provide shade to the big feast. The ladies, wearing hand-made hats, or bonnets and many wore dresses made from feed-sacks, as were their fancy hand-made aprons, began to spread large white sheets on top of the boards. Handmade quilts and blankets would be spread out under the trees for the small children to sit on, while the older teen boys and their fathers were marking out bases for a good baseball game after the large dinner.  The women were talking about their new baby chicks they had ordered, and what they had already planted in their large gardens, and several talked about the flowers they were going to plant around the house, once there wouldn’t be a chance of a spring freeze. Still talking about, once the spring, summer, and fall crops were planted, hoed, harvested, canned and placed in their cellars, they spread out two large white sheets to cover the boards. Several of the older teenage boys hid the Easter eggs. While the children were hunting the eggs, the ladies were getting one-gallon jars of tea out of their wagons and vehicles, while the men were chipping away at the one-hundred pound square block of ice, for the tea. I can almost recall the aroma of golden fried chicken, as they took the cover off of the large roaster pan.

Oh, what precious memories that come flooding over my heart and soul, to recall how us kids got tired of standing around all that food and hearing the elderly Brother Tommy Ezell say the very long blessing, while our stomachs were growling and our mouths watering.

Well, thought this might take some of you elderly youngsters to those bygone days and recalling how everyone had fun coloring the eggs. Oh, what joy to behold, if all our families could get together at the little country churches and all of our families come together, as we all lived in the same area. Now, families are spread out all across the Nation, and some even in foreign countries, causing many lonely hearts and empty bedrooms, that used to be filled with children running in and out the large rooms, chasing each other on through the doors, out to play in the wide open spaces. I thought the temperature would be warm today, after several days prior, were such lovely days. Of course, you know by the time you read this, we may be running around outside in short sleeves, as one never knows what is going to be the reading on an Oklahoma thermostat! One thing for sure, no matter what the weather is, come rain, shine, warm or chilly, the Shawnee Senior Citizens’ Center is the place for Seniors to find friendship, games, music, activities, exercise classes, fellowship, a hot breakfast and also lunch, served, Monday through Friday. So, remember, there isn’t any reason for you to sit home alone, especially when holidays come around, and being lonely. Goodness, if you’re not in the mood to prepare a hot meal, well, come on down and enjoy some cereal, coffee at breakfast, and go play pool or dominoes, as someone is always in those rooms, just waiting to find a pardner, to do some two-step, or just boot-scooting country and western music.  Also, there are coffee pots all through-out the building! All you need to do, to get involved, is  drive down to the Center, and pick up a monthly activity calendar. Read every little word, and decide what you and maybe a friend, might want to be participants. Oh, and don’t forget to check out the days for Gospel music and also for the Western Band and the floor is always ready for some good boot-scooting two-step. The ladies in the kitchen always have the coffee pots full and ready just for you, and also those that like ice tea, always a pan of ice and urn of tea. So, don’t sit home and moan the blues when there is always someone wanting to chat with you, downtown, at the Shawnee Senior Citizens Center! Philippians 4:4 – “Rejoice in the Lord always.” Have a blessed Easter!