December Fate

I started Christmas shopping.

It was a dismal affair. Mainly because my inner Grinch decided to come along with me. In fact, I had quite an entourage roaming the mall with me, once you figure in the fictional characters that are always lurking at the back of my consciousness.

As usual, I began wondering what Rose would be doing. But instead of her being knee-deep in gift-giving ideas, I found her in a much messier bog.

Believe it or not, Christmas is hardly an afterthought for Rose this time of year. There’s no tree yet. No decorated house. If she’s making presents, she has started them, but gifts are a task to be addressed when the other chores are finished.

No. Early December has Rose knee-deep in the gory, cold, slushy mess of hog butchering. And I think she’s a bit traumatized by it all. Continue reading


The 4Fs of Thanksgiving

I’ve been getting ready for Thanksgiving. Cleaning neglected rooms. Brainstorming a long weekend’s worth of menus. Slowly laying in supplies.

All this focus on Thanksgiving, and the impending descent of Christmas shopping, has made me wish for a simpler day, without all the sales hype and food flurry. You know… A Thanksgiving Day like Rose might have had.

Surprise! Things in 1929 were not so different from today after all. Continue reading



“Did you see this, honey?” Rose peered over the newspaper, one eyebrow cocked skyward, telegraphing her interest. “’Costumes for the American Legion’s annual Halloween Dance can be procured at the Armory any time after Saturday noon. Prices reasonable,’” she read. “That would be fun. Art Shook’s old-time orchestra will be there. Can we go?”

“You know I don’t dance.” He hated to disappoint her. But he had a surprise already planned for Saturday. Complete with costumes and everything.

Imagine no Trick-or-Treating. Continue reading