From a photograph by Solomon D. Butcher of four daughters of rancher Joseph M. Chrisman, at their sod house in Custer County, Nebraska. From left to right, Harriet, Elizabeth, Lucie, and Ruth. Photographed in 1886.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

A Fondness for Hats

Hats remembered


I like hats.

I remember a little hat I had when I was about 4 years old. It was round and flat, made of white straw, with a ring of white daisies around the crown and a bow with long ribbon tails that hung down the back. My Grandma Barb bought it for me when I was at Gordon (NE) to visit. I wore it on the train when I went home. Several children were traveling without adults, and the conductor assigned us to a set of facing seats. One of the little boys sat on my hat and squished it. He also sat on my marshmallow-top cookie and squished it!

In the days of my early childhood (the 1950's) all the ladies still wore hats to church. I especially remember the hats of Mrs. James Tapley, our pastor's wife, at the Church of the Nazarene in Ainsworth, Nebraska. She was young and pretty, and she had a hat for every outfit. One of her hats had a bumblebee hovering over a flower. I was enchanted with it.

Later, after hats were no longer de rigeur, my mother still kept several black hats which she wore to funerals.

I have a small collection of hats. I bought a couple of them at yard sales because they were pretty and they needed to be owned by someone who appreciated them. I wore one of them at Halloween last year and told people that it was my costume.

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CONTENTMENT: Keep your heart free from hate, your mind from worry, live simply, expect little, give much, sing often, pray always, forget self, think of others and their feelings, fill your heart with love, scatter sunshine. These are the tried links in the golden chain of contentment.
(Author unknown)

IT IS STILL BEST to be honest and truthful; to make the most of what we have; to be happy with simple pleasure; and to be cheerful and have courage when things go wrong.
(Laura Ingalls Wilder, 1867-1957)

Thanks for reading.