FP1: Fashion plates (working title)

I’m churning the butter, I’m churning the butter, my arms are getting tired from all the churning, churning, churning. Good God this is hard work! But if we don’t want to eat plain bread tonight, the butter I will churn, churn, churn.

A tendril of hair sneaks out from beneath my bonnet as the needle scratches on the phonograph. I tuck the hair back up, and continue to churn, humming to the raspy melody.

“Lila, what in the world are you doing?”

“It’s Delilah, Mother, and I’m churning the butter for our supper. When Pa gets home from the hunt, he’ll want food on the table.”

She eyes me over the post that she’s sorting. “Churning the butter? Pa? Whatever. Just please stop banging the Wiffle ball bat on the floor. You’re giving me a migraine.”

“Yes, Mother,” I obediently say, and I churn more quietly. Now this is really going to take all day!

“Oh, here’s letter from your school.” She passes me a long white envelope. “Which reminds me, I’m taking you back-to-school shopping tomorrow. I’m guessing your class list is in there, so figure out what you need. And we’ll have to get you something new to wear.”

“Mother, I am twelve years old. I am completely capable of sewing my own clothes.”

Again, she raises an eyebrow at me from behind her reading spectacles. “OK, Laura Ingalls, just let me buy you a thing or two to tide you over until it’s time to shear the goat.”

“Splendid. To market tomorrow then.”

“Market, shopping mall, whatever you want.”

“And when you’re done with that dishrag on your head, put it in the dirty laundry!” Mother shouts, as she scurries off to feed the chickens.

Ugh, school. What am I going to wear? It’s been all Amish-meets-prairie all the time for the past month or so – long Laura Ashley-ish floral print skirts and laced up ankle boots – but maybe fall is time for a fresh start. Maybe 1930s pencil skirts and cat eyeglasses. Or early sixties circle skirts and cherry red lipstick. Yeah right, like my mother would ever let me leave the house with lipstick on.

I’ll have to try out some outfits later. In the meantime, this butter isn’t going to churn itself.

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1 Comment »

  1. Sada said

    Ha ha ha. This frighteningly reminds me of myself. I had a long-time bath scenario in which I was a poor peasant girl doing my washing down by the river.

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