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Women's Project - Telling stories about great woman 

Those of you who follow my series -Women I Might Have Known, know what an inspiration all of the women in my life have been to me. I spend countless hours studying our old photo albums so that I might find a picture and story that wants to be told. 



March 21

Francie, my mother-in-law's cousin. lived on a farm in Mascoutah, Il.  She kept a large strawberry field adjacent to the old house. I loved going to the farm to pick berries. It was a wonderful day filled with a gathering of relatives, great stories on the porch, a show and tell of canned produce and new quilts, and concluded with an awesome chicken dinner. She instructed us to stay in our row, clean the vine of ripe fruit, and don’t eat too many berries before we paid. Afterall, that was her catalog money! She was an awesome woman who knew how to bridge the generations by managing a family farm that included her husband, two children and her parents sharing their lives in a beautiful way that we rarely see anymore.


Francie demonstrates the strawberry stoop.


Mary Margaret

March 20

First cousin to my mother-in-law, Mary Margaret was born deaf. She attended and then, worked her career for the Central Institute for the Deaf as a librarian. I adored her. She was very cosmopolitan. She had traveled in Europe, had a romance with a count and sang opera. She had a big booming voice and made a grand entrance. She was a master at re-gifting and cared not a wit about being socially correct. She was a feminist ahead of her time and I greatly loved and admired her for her strength and independence. 


Ann Lucille

March 19

My mom, Ann Lucille, was the closest friend I ever had.  She had a unique ability to “know” something was wrong. No one knows that about me anymore. It’s one of the absent connections when your mother passes away.  One of my favorite memories of her was a day trip that included me, Mom, my sister, Becky and Mom’s sister, Dot. We went to visit their sister and our aunt, Peggy. We sat around Peggy’s kitchen table for lunch, everyone enjoying her skillet burgers with a coke. Watching Mom with her sisters together reminded me of young girls with no real worries, just carefree in a way they wouldnt be once we left the table.  I remember my sister and I later chatting about that day, about how young they looked when they sat together. It was a rare opportuntity to understand my Mom as a solo person, not wife or mother. She was just a girl sharing stories with her sisters, and I really liked that person. Happy Birthday, Mom!



March 18

  Jane was my mother-in-law. Beautiful and colorful. Jane was a great cook, seamstress, knitter,and scrapbooker. I have photos to paint from because of her attentiveness to family history. She constantly told me I better write who, what, where and when on the back of all my photos or I will be in trouble as I get older and start to forget. I am eternally grateful to her for that advise as I struggle with the year or the occasion when I look for pictures. And unfortunately, I did not catalog as she did so my photos are not in "Jane" order. Girlfriends, take a tip from Jane and record some information!

She was a topnotch grandmother. The boys adored her. I've written a few stories about Jane that you can find in my blog archives. 

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