This card given to my Aunt Sadie for Easter in 1944 shows two ducklings flying a brightly colored plane made from an egg. A flying oval thing, right? Which ties into the prompt picture for Sepia Saturday. I’m going with chicks and eggs and the egg man (we’ll get to him a bit later) for this post.
The saying inside reads, “It’s “plane” to see these ducks must be a-hurrying your way with lots and lots of wishes for a Happy Easter Day!” It was sent to Sadie by her Grandmother Repsher.
The next card is another Easter card which shows a chick with a purple umbrella dodging raindrops and tiny flowers. The inside of the card shows another chick bursting out of his egg into the world. The saying inside reads, “I wish you HAPPY EASTER, Chickie says… ME TOO… We both wish you lots of fun Yes indeed WE DO!” Aunt Sadie’s Uncle Bob and Aunt Jean sent the card in 1942.
This beautifully colored card in shades of pastel was sent in 1940 for Easter to Aunt Sadie from her Grandma, although which grandma isn’t clear. A girl rabbit with a festive Easter bonnet is looking coyly at a duckling holding a bouquet for her. The card opens to reveal a completely different scene with the duckling, sans bouquet, looking down at a fluffy chick wearing a blue bow arounds its neck.
The last card I have to show you is a chick wearing both a bonnet and a short, green jacket gazing up at two butterflies. The chick has a big box tied with a pink ribbon under one wing. This is a cleverly folded card which reveals three layers in succession. The second layer has another chick inside wearing only a red and white gingham bow. The third layer has the saying inside which reads, “To someone who is two years old – and mighty sweet!” It was signed by Aunt Helen and given to Sadie in 1938. It honestly seems more like an Easter card than a birthday card but it fits in with my chick and egg theme.
And that bring us to the story for today… Picture it… 1974… Newton, New Jersey.
Every Saturday morning, Marty Havens personally delivers eggs for the week to our back door at 9 Merriam Avenue in Newton, New Jersey. This particular Saturday, he pulls into our horseshoe-shaped driveway and stops between the giant Tulip Poplar and the rose trellis. Marty is the owner of Havens Poultry Farm, the largest farm business still within the town’s boundaries.
Marty’s delivery truck is just a normal pickup truck converted to haul the eggs all over town. He pulls two light pink Styrofoam cartons out of the back and hustles up the short set of steps to our backdoor landing. A brisk knock on the door and I hear my mom yell, “Come on in, Marty. The door’s open!”
I am playing upstairs in the room that I share with Jill, my sister who is younger by 2 years. Jenni, the youngest of the three of us, has her own room on the backside of the house. Our room is painted light green and matches our dark green coverlets but you would never know it on Jill’s bed. Hers is never made up enough to show off the cover. Each of our twin beds is flanked by three-drawer dressers which match our Quaker style head and footboards. One of the two windows, both on my side of the room, looks out over the porch roof to where the plastics factory sits across the street. The other window faces Ed and Maggie Matthew’s residence, which is a mirror image of our butter yellow house.
I drop my Dressy Bessy doll and head out to the upstairs landing, which has a railing with white spindles and a dark wood handrail. The spindles are not just round; they’re the fancy type with all sorts of bumps and knobs. I’m curious about what’s going on in the kitchen but don’t want to actually go downstairs. I figure I can do my spying from above. If you lean over the railing, you can just barely see into the kitchen but only a sliver. Instead of leaning over, I think I’ll be able to see more if I stick my head through the spindles. Right?
It’s a tight fit. I feel the pressure on my ears as they smoosh into the side of my head. The backs of my pierced earrings poke into my neck. Once my ears get past, the rest of my head just follows. I get as close to the floor as possible and crane my neck to get a good look. Hmmm… even with my head through the spindles, the view isn’t really much better. Definitely not what I was expecting. I should probably just go downstairs.
I pull my head back. “That’s weird. My head won’t come out,” I think to myself. I try again and again and again and again, turning my head this way and that. It’s not working.
Panic starts to take over. I’m never going to get loose. How will I get to school? I love school. What if I have to pee? I’ll have to pee my pants. Oh! That’s really bad. And messy. How will I sleep? I can’t stay here like this!
I wail out, “MMMOOOMMMM!!!”
Mom knows this isn’t a normal “Mom” call and I hear both her and Marty rushing for the stairs. I see them come around the big fat newel post at the bottom. As they realize what I’ve done, Marty bursts out laughing. For some reason, that doesn’t immediately embarrass me. But when Jill comes up behind them, my face turns bright red. I can see the sparkle of amusement in her blue eyes. She’s never going to let me forget this one. Sisters are like that. Also, right now, I’m the oldest at eight years old and the “good” girl of the three sisters. Any little thing that gets me in trouble just tickles Jill to no end.
My mom and Marty size up the situation. “Well,” Marty says, “We can butter up her head!”
My face gets redder and I try to sink through the floor. It’s not cooperating and stays quite solid. After deciding on a plan of action, they try different places up and down the spindles trying to find the sweet spot that has the most space. Marty holds my ears down while Mom pushes on the top of my head. After about five minutes of fiddling, my head is finally free.
My ears are very red. Partly from embarrassment, partly from being man-handled. I’m relieved to be free and mumble, “Thank you,” to Marty but I immediately slink off some place private to mope.
Marty and my mom head back down the stairs to the kitchen to finish up their egg transaction. I hear them chuckling and then the wooden back door slams shut as Marty heads off to his next delivery. He’s going to have a good story to tell to everyone today!