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Synopsis:   Generations have passed but the chapters in this delightful book will remain embedded in the author’s mind forever. Growing up in the1940s and 1950s is so far removed from growing up today that most children cannot even fathom life in those days.  

Electronics was not a word you heard used on a day to day basis. When parents wanted to call their kids home for dinner, they opened the door and yelled “dinner’s ready.” They didn’t call them on a cell phone or send them a text.

Second World War ended in the ‘40s and times were tough. Mothers stayed home and took care of the home while fathers worked ten to twelve hours a day to put food on the table.

Even so, it was a less complicated time. Families sat down at the table and ate their meals together, while discussing the events of the day. Children were respectful of their elders and minded their manners or paid the price. And, in most cases, they went to church on Sunday mornings.

To take a trip meant getting in the car and driving to a town to visit friends or relatives in a car that had no air conditioning.

This book will take you back to those days and let you into the world of the unusual upbringing of the author, born generations ago.

Excerpt From: Blueberries and Bears and My Brother's Shoes

Taken from Chapter: Montana Summers


I had finished fifth grade. The car trunk was packed full of suitcases, Of course, the wannigan was in exactly the right place in the trunk for easy access. Dad had rented a house for the summer on Flathead Lake, a few miles outside of Somers, Montana. This house was next to the house we had lived in when my youngest brother, George, was born.

This was the best summer I had as a child.

The owners of this house had converted the detached garage into a huge bedroom and this is where we three girls slept. My youngest sister, Carol, was only seven and she was usually afraid to stay out there. It probably was because someone scared the shit out of her with stories of bears breaking in and monsters looking through the windows. Even if she started out sleeping in the garage, seven nights out of ten she wound up back in the house.

To get to the lake, all we had to do was cross the road, go down a steep hill, and jump in. Every day, for almost three months, I lived in the water. Occasionally, my oldest brother and I would row the boat to Somers. Sometimes, we would hop on our bikes and ride the three miles to go to the store or get the mail.

Flathead Lake was beautiful back in 1949. It is a huge glacier-fed lake and it was cold. There were few homes in that area back then. I hear that has changed now and it is a busy vacation area with big, beautiful, expensive houses.

It was this summer that my parents hired Anna Lou Oursland to take care of us while they traveled to Alaska. She became

our substitute mother for almost eight weeks. Behave, listen to Anna Lou and stay out of trouble was all dad said and away they went.

We had a ball. We laughed, we swam, we rode our bikes, ate a lot of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and slept like babies after. . . . 

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