stories

Halloween Memories

The following is by Writers in the Grove member, Patti Bond.

I enjoyed the time going to door to door saying “trick or treat” as a child. Sometimes my family would go out to eat then Dave and I would have to hurry home and get dressed in our costumes. I really liked dressing up. The only thing I didn’t like was going trick-or-treating in the rain, but that’s what living in Oregon is all about.

I loved the year I was Little Red riding Hood. I was a pretty one that year. I’d be so anxious I would be waiting for trick or treat time, dressed in a cape with a scarf on my head.

That Halloween, after going around several blocks, Dave and I came home and emptied our bags on the living room floor to see what all the neighbors gave us. I remember putting the candy in our piles and thinking “Wow!” My favorites were Smarties, Tootsie Rolls, and bubble gum.

After Dave and I saw our treats, our mother would say, ” Okay, you can have two but you have to put the rest in a bowl and put it in the kitchen.”

We weren’t allowed to have the bowl in our room. Did she think we would eat all the candy at once? If we did, we would get sick, then that would spoil all the fun for next year, as I’d learned in the past. We’re supposed to learn from our mistakes, right?

Baker City Wildfire

The following is written by Writers in the Grove member, Patti Bond. She often shares her memories and memories with us.

There was a wildfire near my grandparents’ house this weekend. I heard them telling us to stay away from the fire. But there are too many memories in these homes.

The red house on street, number 2706, is where my dad lived with his three sisters, my Aunt Kathy, Aunt Gayle, and Aunt Marilyn. Unfortunately, or fortunately as the fire threatened, Aunt Marilyn is no longer with us. That’s not the only memory at risk from the fire. My mother grew up in Baker City, the place where her biological father left her with her mother alone, just the two of them.

My mother was very active in theater and drama, and she loved Rainbow Girls. She was also very smart, skipping the third grade as she grew up. She and her mother, Zelene, moved several times, finally meeting Herbert Kelly and marrying him, giving them a place to settle in Baker City. Dave and I spent many years traveling to these homes visiting grandparents. I can remember hearing Daddy say that as long as the grandparents were alive, we were going to Baker City for Christmas. Grandma Kelly would greet us upon arrival every time saying “I hope Old Man Winter would give us a break.”

There are just too many memories in the houses up there, near the fire. Many are pleading for access to their homes to collect their precious memories before the wildfire consumes them. So many legacies remain, and wilt in the hearts of the many people who’ve lived in those houses, including my family.

They say the fires were started by lightning, normal for eastern Oregon. If I had unlimited resources, I would work day and night to save the livelihood and memories of my family’s heritage.

Please Lord put out these fires. Protect our memories and legacy in Baker City.

When Pigs Fly

Bev Walker, a long-time member of Writers in the Grove, contributed this poem. Bev specializes in writing stories and poetry with a bright and lighthearted spirit. an accomplished painter and writer, she’s published books on her family’s history and genealogy, and contributed to many anthologies. She is currently working on a memoir.

There once was a man most curious
who went from silly to serious
when the town he was happily in
was met with a great big wind.
He went up in the might swirl
of a hurricane – and with a girl.
Round and round in terrible weather
Went cow, pig and house all together.
Said the man to the spinning sky,
“Oh, oh, my, look! Pigs can fly!”
They came down in a far off land
set down by a gentle hand.
Man and girl married in a jig,
fixed the house, milked the cow, styed the pig.
And because of their whirlwind romance,
Everyone knew how to dance.
And it never caused a moment’s stir
that they never knew where they were.
So don’t fret if your life is a jumble
one day it will land all a tumble
in a haven where all things come right,
and even pigs dance with delight.

Prompt: Home Remedies

Growing up, did your family have home remedies, possibly passed down from generation to generation?

Some home remedies have been proven to be effective. Some are mere panaceas, of comfort to those giving and receiving the treatment.

The prompt is to write about a home remedy in your family or one you’ve overheard. Tell the story by tapping into the emotional and sensual descriptions of the experience, good or bad.