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"My Tribute to Mother," by Estelle Stadem-Rangen"

We were just plain country folk. The toil of the land gave us bread.

We had cattle and pigs and chickens and sheep, a bountiful garden kept us fed.

Old-fashioned we were on Plain View Farm, work was the rule for the day.

Each did his part--youngest to old, often some song paved the way.

We read by the light of the kerosene lamp and cooked by the old wood range.

It guzzled the wood we'd pile in the box for such an appetite, we thought strange.

Happy the day when the hard-coal heater in the dining room stately was put.

No more splitting of wood for those rooms, and likewise, not as much soot.

The "Saturday night bath" was a "circus for free," no faucets for water to come gushing.

Two buckets of water, steam kettle to warm this galvanized tub, was for washing.

"What in the world are you doing, my child?" asked Mama, thinking to lower the lever.

"I dropped the towel in this old bathtub and I'v dried myself wetter than ever!"

Let one ear be missed or a toe or a heel show signs of too gentle a tubbing,

We found ourselves in Mom's loving hands that seemed not too loving in scrubbing!

We went by Nash-Touring and mostly by Ford as a family to church we would go.

Sunday School, Services, Fellowship meetings--we seldom traveled in low.

If perchance rain had come through the night or snow filled the roads to "no travel,"

Next best was readied for trailer and sleigh pulled by work horses solved the battle!

The old reed organ was played in spare time but never did tones sound so soothing

as when Mama would sing and chord in her style after we were tucked in for the evening.

The Fall of the year was a bustling time, harvest of garden and grain,

Canning of pickles, vegetables, fruit, meat preserved, was indeed gain!

Dry were the years of the nineteen thirties, too much land to be watered by hand.

Seems I remember we were called in the house hearing, "We want that water on the land."

We often sold pigs but never potatoes--enough for the family was growing!

Seems we asked once why this was so--guess cause the hogs don't need hoeing.

A farmer in circles goes a day by day. You sow what you reap and you reap what you sow.

But be it in circles, the living is honest and dusty and back-breaking, with hardly a foe.

Life for us each had certain components--character, principles, ideals!

Laughter of parents was like music to us, time to protect were our shields.

No child comparison and "no pets." Firm decisions made us secure.

For "no" without anger was said and upheld. A good spanking was the last cure.

The "gift of consistency" made our hearts easier. Discerning spirit and teachable knowledge,

brought understanding love--the gift that is greatest, learned at home in the old Stadem College.

Togetherness was the theme of our family, be it picnics, devotions, work for the day.

Fellowship plus with our friends we cherished as they often came driving our way!

We're thankful for parents, childhood, and Bible, Christian heritage, with God, peace!

How can we help but pay tribute this moment with such blessings that never will cease!

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