How did we ever do without air conditioning? Can you imagine your grandmother canning beans, tomatoes or corn over a hot wood stove in temperatures like we’ve had this week?
How many of you can remember as a child traveling in the summertime in automobiles with no air conditioning? Can you remember those plastic seat covers that left a puddle of sweat beneath you? We’ve got it mighty good.
I heard from Vera Harrington this week as we visited for a little while on the phone. Vera related visiting with Mary Harrington Burns and that the granddaughters were “full force” in summertime activities.
Mary had also called to find out about her high school friend, Penny Wood, who passed away on Tuesday. This is extending sympathy to the Wood family at the loss and offering them our prayers and support. Penny had lived in the neighboring Martin Springs community her entire life and was a classmate of many in this community.
Vera allowed that if we don’t get some significant rainfall in the next few weeks that hay production is at a standstill. “It’s getting awfully dry and the heat is drying up the hay meadows awfully fast,” she said. “The grass is burning and we’re going to have to have some moisture pretty soon or we won’t be having much of a cutting of hay.”
The Hinton family has just returned from their annual summertime trip to Gulf Shores, Ala. Some 25 members of the family made their annual trek to the beach and reported having a wonderful time.
I also heard from Peggy Pullen, this week. She advised that Triston Pullen is to appear in the musical “The King and I” at the Grandville Arts Center in Garland, from June 26-28. Triston, the grandson of Peggy and Waymon Pullen, and the son of Lee Pullen and Susan Miner, is a middle school student in Sulphur Springs. He has been attending the Young Artists Camp in Garland, where he has learned a variety of theater techniques in association with Richland College’s Theater Department.
Congratulations to Triston. If you would like tickets to one of the performances, they can be obtained by calling 972-205-2790.
I went by the Fishers on Sunday afternoon to get a dozen brown eggs and had a tour of the new construction on their dairy barn. They already have the “pit” dug and are making progress fast. It will now be to install the equipment and get things ready to milk again. I know they are anxious to get cows back home and back into the routine of milking in their own barn.
J.R. had been working at shelling pinto beans and reported a profitable day at the Sulphur Springs Farmer’s Market on Saturday. He allowed that the parking on the square being “thwarted” by an event had decreased some of the attendance at the market, though.
Marilee has returned home following her Alliance Bank Tour to Alaska. She reported a great time and certainly some cooler temperatures in the Pacific Northwest. She was accompanied on the trip by her mother, Ethel Winton, Ima Asher and Sue Gill. Everyone reported a wonderful time and a period of relaxation.
Many in our community have reported that they are beginning to wonder about their tomato crop this year. It seems that most of the tomatoes are growing, but they aren’t ripening. “My tomatoes are big and green but not turning red.” exclaimed one gardener. “They are as hard as a rock and remain green on the vine.”
Some local gardeners have already given up on their tomatoes and are making fried green tomatoes out of them. Has anyone got a clue? Many are blaming the weather.
I heard from Rhandi Stribling Fails, and she allowed that David Stribling is in the hay field this week.
Over the weekend, Rhandi and Case had a nice visit with Hannah Teer, Laura Teer’s granddaughter, who was visiting from Abilene. Then, on Friday night, Rhandi, Debra, and Case enjoyed a supper with Baylee Gilbreath and Marcille Graham at the Oak Valley Catfish Kitchen. (I think there is a table with their name on it there.)
Sunday found Rhandi cooking for Father’s Day, despite the heat, and Debra managed to “crank-up” the old ice cream freezer for some homemade ice cream. Reports are that there wasn’t any left.
Speaking of homemade ice cream, can you remember sitting on the “toe sack” on the old crank freezers while your daddy turned the crank? Of course, electricity has taken the place of turning the crank, but I’ll bet there are plenty of you that can remember the joy of sitting on the freezer, beneath the shade tree and the anticipation of eating the summertime treat. There are some things that just bring back special memories.
Have you enjoyed a watermelon, yet? Among my special summertime memories is that of going to the field where we raised watermelons and cutting one open and eating just the “heart” of the melon. Equally good were those that you took to the ice house on Oak Avenue and chilled. Bringing the cold melons out and enjoying ice cold watermelon was a special way to celebrate summer. Can any of you still remember the ice house on Oak Avenue in Sulphur Springs?
At a recent antique auction, there was an “ice box” for sale that made you marvel at the strides we’ve made with keeping cool. There was also an old “coke box” that was used to ice down cold drinks. Can you remember these items being a part of your childhood?
Many of us in the “country” used an “A-tub” and iced down drinks for summertime gatherings. Do you remember getting a “K-Orange” or root beer from the tub and how wonderful they tasted? There’s just something lacking in the soda pops that we drink today.
Kelly and I were talking at the office this week about going as children to the Sabine Valley Ice Cream Store on Gilmer Street. Can you remember the joy of eating a honey dew or peach ice cream cone at the establishment? There was just something about the flavors, or perhaps that you didn’t do if very often, that bring back fond memories of summertimes past. We’d come into town for church on Wednesday and Sunday nights and make a stop by the store, following church, for a special treat.
Many of our dairy farmers would be hard-pressed to agree, but I can even remember eating “mellorine,” and for some reason, it tasted pretty good. Can you remember getting it at the local grocery store in the blue-green carton?
And, it certainly wouldn’t be a complete reminiscence, without remembering the rootbeer floats at K&N Root Beer, on Main Street. Can you remember the frosty mugs? It was a special treat to get a root beer or float, and they never tasted the same when you bought the same ingredients at the store and tried to make them at home.
Many in our community are taking a breather following all of the Dairy Festival activities of the past couple of weeks. It’s great to celebrate an occasion, but it’s also nice to take a break.
Congratulations to Katelyn Cody for being named the 50th Hopkins County Dairy Festival Queen. Also, congratulations to the other seven candidates as they delivered a wonderful show and were such outstanding young ladies to work with throughout the pageant and activities. And “hats off” to Haley Reynolds for her outstanding year as the 49th Queen and fulfilling her duties with such grace and style. It’s amazing to work with such outstanding individuals.
Until next week, make an attempt to make some more summertime memories and stay cool. Remember our troops who make it all possible and ask for them an extra measure of safety and a return trip home. Pray for love in our hearts, harmony in our community and peace in our land. God bless Reilly Springs, Hopkins County and America.
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