Saturday, July 06, 2013
Chickens, Yoders, and Daughters
She called me. The connection was terrible. I heard something about roosters and then we were cut off.
She called twice more. Roosters.....maybe giving away...kitchen....
Finally I just hollered that yes, I'll take them, since the connection wasn't going to get any better and I think that's what she wanted to hear.
Now Anne remembers things about you, like if you are looking for a meat grinding attachment for a KitchenAid mixer, or if you like Harold Bell Wright books or if, like me, you like hen-and-rooster things in your kitchen. And she really enjoys matching up people and things.
She came for Sunday dinner and brought the roosters that they had given away at the estate sale. Actually, it was two roosters and one hen. They are kind of like pillows, very stiff and stuffed, with cardboard in the base so they stand up.
I thought they were cute. However, they are too tall to set on the shelf above my cupboards, and the colors don't really "go" with my kitchen, and they are definitely not comfortable to sit on as kitchen-chair pillows, and there's no good place for them.
Which puts me in a terrible dilemma, since my thoughtful mother-in-law chose them for me and they are now mine, and they have eyes and shapes and personality.
My daughters didn't want me to keep them. They were all flippant and logical and unfeeling about this. "They don't match, and they don't fit anywhere." As though that decided it.
I said, "You just don't understand. Surely I can use them somewhere. Poor Grandma. That was so thoughtful of her."
They said, "Mom, you have No Use for them. Grandma would understand."
I said, "Hey, I could use them for a neck pillow when I fly!" I demonstrated this useful purpose.
Jenny, who is 14 and melting with embarrassment about me every time we go out in public* had emphatic and horrified words and facial expressions about this idea.
The older girls said, "Please, Mom, they are ugly."
I said, "They are not. That much."
They said, "Mom, just GET RID OF THEM."
I wailed, "I CAN'T. Look at how that hen is just LOOKING at me with those beady little eyes, like she's saying, 'Ya, Dorcas, I know good and well what you're scheming. Fine! Just throw me in the trash!'" In fact, she looked just like my grandma when she knew we were up to no good, that sharp sideways glance with no smile. My mom, too, for that matter.
She even looked Amish. The roosters did too.
The girls looked at each other.
I said, "Besides, someone put a lot of work into these. Well, quite a bit. Thankfully they were printed pieces and they didn't have to applique all this."
Emily said, "It's exactly like Aunt Loraine says. Yoders feel SORRY for THINGS. Especially for abandoned things that nobody else wants. They feel they have to RESCUE this poor STUFF."
I had to laugh because that is very true, but there are Yoders who are MUCH worse than me about this, so why couldn't they let me keep these poor chickens that have FEELINGS unlike all the old 3-legged chairs in Dad's barn or the soap Fred rescues from truck-stop shower garbage cans?
I finally put the chickens on the porch on the tea table. I thought they looked very country and clever.
The girls were momentarily pacified, although I sensed we were not finished with the discussion. One night they slept outside and needed extra pillows.
They used the chickens.
The hen looked at me sideways and smiled, just a little bit.
Amy, after reading the above draft: Hey did you guys actually use the chickens for extra pillows?
Jenny: No. I got them to throw at Emily.
Emily: And they HURT.
Amy: Oops, there goes Mom's blog post.
Looks like it's you and me against the world, Henny Penny.
*"Mom, I am NOT going garage saling with you if you wear a fanny pack. I just refuse."
Ok then. I wanted someone to go with me so I capitulated.
Different day, different conversation:
Me: You really need to lengthen that skirt so you can sit down with a shred of dignity.
Jenny: If dignity is so important, why do you use a fanny-pack?
Me: SIGH. Paul, do you think a fanny-pack looks undignified?
Paul [treading carefully]: Well, you'll notice that I never wear one.
Some people could make my life a lot easier if they just chose to.