Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Revelations From Their Love Letters

Okay, we have already read about Mom and Dad’s first date.  After an evening of dancing, Dad asked Mom out on a date and then promptly stood her up.  Well, I have been reading some of Mom and Dad’s love letters they wrote to each other in the two years before they were married.  And some interesting details can be gleaned.
On June 24, 1953 Mom wrote to Dad that “last Saturday” was their sixth month anniversary.  By using a perpetual calendar, I can calculate that their first date was right around December, 20, 1952.  That would have been a Saturday.
Now, if you use a little conjecture and Mom’s recollections about how they met, then we can guess that they first went out dancing with a group around the first week of December.  Give Dad a week or two to stand up Mom and then regain her favor, and you have a first date on December 20, during the Christmas holidays.
As I read these letters I gain some new insight into Mom and Dad.  They have become more than these two people that worked so hard to give me a good life.  They enjoyed movies, going out, drinking beer, and sharing the company of each other.  They really had a beautiful life.

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Mom Was Hiding Her Talents

You've heard the cliché “don’t hide your talents under a bushel basket.”  As I am researching the Hislop line today, I am finding new and interesting details about the life of Mary Jane Hislop Brubaker.  As I search more and more, I am realizing that Mom really didn't say much about herself, or I wasn't listening.

The Ogden Standard Examiner newspaper in the 1930s and 40 covered the news and happenings of Huntsville, Utah and the Hislop clan showed up often.  In these pages and reports I am discovering that Mom was very active and very talented.

When she was about 12 years old, in the middle of the war years, Mom (along with every other woman and young girl in Huntsville) was volunteering for the war effort.  I've heard stories about the rationing and the recycling to provide material for the war effort.  But Mom didn't ever tell about baking cookies for the USO.  But on June 6, 1944 (a day no less important than D-Day) Mom and a group of young ladies are baking cookies.  The Standard Examiner reported that the “Primary girls of the LDS Huntsville ward baked 25 and one-half dozen cookies for the USO” during the day.  And, Mom was in the middle of it.  She was 12 years old at the time.

A few years later, when Mom was 16, there were regular reports of Mom entertaining at community programs as part of a violin duet.  I remember Mom telling us how she played the violin, and she made her children take violin lessons with the same instrument.  I also remember her talking about playing the organ.  But, who knew she had enough talent to perform in front of community groups?  Mom was hiding her talent.

And, more details are coming out with every search.  I just now found a news report dated 1937.  Mom was about 5 years old (17 October 1937) she broke her arm.  The Standard Examiner reported: “Jane Hislop, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Henry Hislop, is confined to her home today following a compound fracture of the arm.  She received the injury when she attempted to jump from a table.”  Okay, Mom’s talents did not include gymnastics, but as the research builds up, I am discovering a new person that I really didn't know.