Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Silly Sisters

Silly Sisters
It was a rare evening in July spent with my two sisters….as we were looking at my “OLD” scrapbook, reminiscing and laughing our silly socks off! What a fun time we had together!

My “OLD” scrapbook is filled with page after page of birthday cards which I received while growing up. I was well remembered by my aunts, sisters and friends, year after year with cards and notes. You have to know those cards are from the 1940’s and are probably considered to be antique. We were amazed how cards have changed in looks, size, style and verse, over the years. There were serious cards, funny cards, and fancy cards…some even had a velvet or satin insert. As Barb, Kathy and I read the cards on each page, we got the giggles. We soon realized that our sister Bonnie always gave me a humorous, funny card. Bonnie had a good sense of humor; she would be the one to crack the jokes and make us laugh!
We were four Stolte girls growing up on the farm….I was the “Middle Child”… with two sisters 5- and 7-years older than I, and one sister 5-years younger….so when Barb and Bonnie were 14 and 16, I was 9 and Kathy was 4 years old. Because of the difference between our ages, I don’t remember having a close sister-relationship with any of them during my childhood years. In my sister-memory search….I was the “Little” sister to Barb and Bonnie.
Maybe we girls did have a sister-bonding when the four of us shared one bedroom with two double size beds, in our two-story farmhouse. You can do the math…four girls, two beds, two kids to a bed!! That’s the way it was in those days…the kids could share a room and a double bed. The upstairs was not heated, so in the winter time that bedroom would get so cold we could scrape frost off the windows and sometimes even off the ceiling.
Our farm place had a looong driveway on the downhill, so in the winter when it was snowy, we would go sledding down the driveway from the house to the road…I don’t see how we all fit on that small sled. The sisters helped me learn to ride bicycle when I was around 6 years old. They would set me on the bicycle and give it a push and awaaay….I would fly!! Wobbling to and fro until down to the grass I would fall; then I’d pick up the bike and push it back up the hill for another try!!! I finally learned to ride. When I was in second grade I was able to ride my bicycle with my sister Bonnie and our neighbor friends, the 1 ½ miles to Zion Parochial school, in the fall and spring time.

Our family spent Sundays going to church in the morning, and often times Mom would invite company over for Sunday dinner; that was the highlight of the week… having friends and/or cousins over to play games. In the summertime we would eat outdoors under the shade tree and then play a ballgame in the yard. Dad loved baseball games. On summer nights our family would go watch baseball games. There was a ball diamond north of town where the local teams played. On Saturday nights we’d go to town for the outdoor band concert and an ice cream cone. I liked to follow my sisters around and hang out with them and their teenage friends…I’m not sure they always appreciated having their little sister tagging along with them.
A Sunday dinner on the lawn. Pictured from front left: Mary Ellen, Kathy, friend, Joyce Bremer (Scheu), and cousin Marilyn. The hill in the background is where I learned to ride bicycle.

Now in our adult life we enjoy being together whenever possible. Kathy lives 3 hours away, so we may get together once a year. She usually comes this way to attend a wedding, or some special occasion, this year she was here for our cousins reunion in Ocheyedan…it turned out to be a very special time of fellowship with cousins we haven’t seen for a long time.

We are saddened now, that there are only three sisters, since Bonnie went to be with the Lord in 1992. She died of cancer....18 years ago!! Oh my!! Where did all those years go? Life is so short and fragile! But I am grateful that we can laugh and treasure many precious memories of our loves ones. I am so blessed to have experienced the gift of being raised in a loving, Christian family….my parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and friends... and for that I give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and faithfulness!!
The Stolte Family - 1951
Sisters: Bonnie, Kathy, Mary Ellen, Barb and our parents.

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