Memorial Day! The unofficial start to summer. A day to remember, not only our military heroes, but all of our loved ones. We have done many articles the past years on Memorial Day, but it doesn’t hurt recapping some of our feelings about the holiday. It’s the first long weekend that we can picnic, the first long weekend that we start thinking about the summer ahead. Up here in the mountains, it’s the day when we can all, safely, plant our gardens. We hope you all did at least one activity that celebrated the end of May and memories.

A special hello to all from Mary Aull. She misses her friends from Ashland and from WAJPL. She is well and hanging in there.

Congratulations to Connor Aplin. I still think of him as a little tyke, but he was crowned Prom King this year. Also best wishes and congratulations to his sister, Samantha, who graduated college after 3 years with honors. She is in training to be a veterinarian, and will be interning in Hensonville this summer.

The VFW Auxiliary in Windham is looking for military spouses to join and keep the post going. As with many organizations today, no one wants to commit to being a member and to help with worthy causes. If interested, bring DD214 and name of spouse to meeting. They meet the second Wednesday of the month at the VFW. Happy Birthday greeting to Ken and Marie Smith. Prayers to you, and Ken, stay upright, please.

Please keep the following in your prayers as they recover: Charlie VanEtten, Ed Armstrong, Betty Young, Opal DeLong, Anita Drum and Pat Ferris.

Sympathy to the families of Clinton Drum, Larry Davis, Linda Barlow and Betty O’Hara who passed recently.


With the price of gas and food going out of sight, with a recession looming on the horizon, I began thinking about life before and after the war, the 1930s and ‘40s. The country had just come out of the Depression, the MidWest was still recovering from the Dust Bowl, and manufacturing shifted to the war effort. We were a farming family, so didn’t feel the shortages as much, but those in cities were used to having different products on their tables. This led to innovations through the wonderful world of science. Imitations of everything started showing up on the shelves. You probably remember me telling you about the bags of white shortening we got with a yellow capsule of coloring. The lucky child got to knead and knead that coloring into the lard until it took on the appearance of butter. The first oleomargarine. Yummy. We next saw instant coffee, and soon freeze dried coffee for morning breakfast. Vanilla for baking was too expensive to import, so we now have imitation vanilla, plus other flavorings. Coffee Mate was made which became convenient for offices since they didn’t need a fridge. Bacon bits were created out of vegetables — tastes like the real thing?? We want a glass of lemonade? Don’t have to squeeze lemons, just one scoop out of a can. Same with iced tea. Artificial sweeteners became all the rage for those trying to lose weight. Salad Dressing instead of mayonnaise which brings me to a funny memory.

My father hated mayonnaise. When my mother’s stepmother came to visit, she did most of the cooking, as she was an excellent cook. She would never open a jar of mayo, she insisted on making her own. She whisked up the eggs and oil and poured the resulting mayonnaise in a gravy boat to serve. Yup, you guessed it. My father put a heaping of mashed potatoes on his plate alongside a very generous serving of meat and pour “gravy” all over everything. So much for an excellent meal and Holdridge patience.

I feel sorry for the families who grew up never knowing the taste of homemade butter, fresh cream from the cow to the table, and home grown meats and vegetables. Now everything fresh and good has a label on it and costs extra. Many only learn to cook by taking food from the freezer to the microwave or fryer.

I hope the next generation learns the value of good, home made, real food.

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Johnson Newspapers 7.1


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