Memory Lane……

My sister called last Wednesday afternoon. She was in the Newark Airport trying to get home. There seemed to be a weather related, air traffic controller problem and her flight was not leaving until 9 PM. The Southwest agent had suggested a flight to St Louis or Chicago. She would sit up all night in either airport waiting for a flight to Kansas City Thursday 6 AM. She wanted to know if I was available for an impromptu 17.5 hour layover. The plan included a flight to Chicago that evening with a Thursday 4 PM flight to KC. Sam’s mom agreed to change Sam Day to Friday.  We were set for a sister holiday. My role was to do the pick-up and drop-off at Midway.

Thursday, we ate breakfast at Leslie’s favorite place, Colonial Café, server of her favorite, the Morning Glory Muffin. Our server shared the secret recipe with us, Karp’s frozen Glorious Muffin mix, distributed by Fox River Foods. After breakfast we loaded up the luggage and went on a reconnaissance mission to find Emerson Creek Pottery Tea Room near Oswego. The pottery store opens May 4. The Tea Room opens May 7. I am thinking a May visit with friends is on my horizon.

Our next stop was The Growing Place, my favorite plant and garden center, located in the southeast section of Aurora. We wondered through the paths, looking at the cold hardy plants and garden accessories on display. The farmhouse garden shop is filled with a wide array of garden décor.  Window shopping was very relaxing as we shared our summer garden dreams.

The Antique Mall on the parameter of the Fairfield Mall at Fox Valley has been on my list of places to visit for years. We stopped by to check them out. We wondered the aisles looking at treasures from yesteryears. We reminisced about this piece of pottery or that piece of furniture. There was a brand new dealer* putting her items on display. We exchanged pleasantries and I glanced at a doll standing at the back of her booth.  It was an Ideal Saucy Walker 32” doll. Other than the sandy blonde hair she looked exactly like the Christmas doll Santa Claus brought me Christmas 1959. My doll was a brunette.

My sister and I shared a moment with the dealer. The story of my wanting that doll more than anything. She was on the “doll wall” at the old Sears and Roebuck Co. department store located on Kansas Avenue in downtown Topeka, KS. On Christmas morning after all of the presents were opened, I watched my siblings playing with their toys. There was not a doll in sight. My dad asked me to look behind the window curtain beside the Christmas tree. There was my doll. I named her Pamela Ann, after my Aunt Mary’s little girl.

My grandparents were coming over so Mom sent us out to the kitchen with Dad to eat breakfast. She was straightening up the living room when we heard her call out, “I told you to go out to the kitchen and eat breakfast,” My dad looked at us and counted out six children. “Betty,” he called, “they are all here.” Mom showed up at the kitchen door laughing, “I thought the doll was one of the kids.”

Christmas 1961, is when Leslie received her doll. A Bride Doll, she was a little shorter than mine and had a more adult figure. She, too, was located on the Sears and Roebuck, Co, “doll wall”. Every time we went in to the store that fall, there she was. Sometime in December the doll disappeared from the wall. I put my arm around my sister as she suffered through the disappointment. I do not know why we were both surprised to see that Bride Doll under the Christmas tree that year. Santa always did a really good job at our house.

And my sister has found the Morning Glory muffin recipe, so there might be MG muffins next time I am in Kansas……..

*1010 Treasures, Suzi Highberg, Proprietress, 40548 Fox Valley Center Dr., Aurora, IL www.1010treasures.com

©2011 Susan Kendall.  All rights reserved

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Lily

Born in Topeka, Kansas in the middle of the 20th Century, daughter, granddaughter, niece, sister, cousin, mother, aunt, grandmother, great-grandmother, friend, reader, spiritual, writer, cook, crafter, junker...... twice-married, former non-profit executive in retread mode... currently living a bucket list life in a remodeled schoolhouse.....

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