Letters from Summerland

The following letters were written by my grandparents from Summerland to my parents and our family, mostly in the 1950s. I am presently compiling stories from my memories as a child visiting my grandparents in Summerland, and while I was originally just relying on my memories and some family pictures, I wanted to really capture the “flavor” of the community and family in that time period. Therefore I got out a package of letters my parents had saved, and have been going through them, drawing out bits and pieces that will contribute to my research for my “Summerland Stories.”  I have left out very personal details, but I think that the information I am posting here is really intriguing and really does capture the atmosphere of that time period in small-town Summerland. It will also be of interest to those who had family in Summerland at that time, as my grandparents were very friendly people, and mention many Summerland residents in the letters.  Enjoy!

Date: August 19, 1946
From: John Mott
To: Marjorie Mott, in nurse’s training in New Westminster, BC.

We have been out getting the pears picked. We have over fifty Bartletts picked and some to pick yet. We had around 6 tons of cots. Now it is raining so will have to wait untill morning. We got a new tire for the car so it makes a beginning on a new set as the old ones are badly shot.

Date: September 16, 1961
From: Emily Mott
To: Marjorie (Mott) Wright, in Rutland, BC.

Mr. Allin passed away in hospital last Mon. I think it was … You know Mr. A. listened to those radio programs the last while and surely God must have spoken to his heart.

Popsie [her husband, John] kept the home in good order. I had given the kitchen floor a wipe over before I left, and I had to smile when he told me he gave it a clean over yesterday. Of course he has 4 birds going happily where they please. Besides he has been working on the furnace.

Popsie was not charging for his work at hosp. — just once a day checking — and here comes a chk for $50 for Apr. & May. Hurrah!

Aunt Carrie [Mott] has a bad cold she finds it hard to shake. Otherwise we’d ask them to take us up to see Graham [new grandson in Rutland].

Date: November 19, 1953
From: John Mott
To: Marjorie (Mott) & Bill Wright in Masset, BC.

I got all my dahlias up today. We have not had much frost yet, it has been a very fine fall.

There is a Youth for Chris meeting at the Highschool tomorrow night. Mainard Embray will be going to Vancouver soon.

Date: early 1950s
From: Emily Mott
To: “family” (children Emily, Marjorie, Laura, Preston–all in Vancouver area)

Here I wait trying to get a few lines off to you before we go to church. Wes is coming for Mary, Enid and ourselves, then on to pick up Marie and his mother.

Before I go further, I wonder if you heard Mr. Pike died from a heart attack on Monday. They had gone to Campbell River for a rest.

We are not home from church. There was a really big turn-out on Mon. evening, when slides, no movies were shown. The Baptist Y. People came. Rev. Collett is a man of wisdom and he is a very radiant personage. Last night he showed slides using Daddy’s projector. Daddy used the machine as he talked, and same again tonight. More were out. These are cold days and nights; coldest at our place has been 6 below [F] on Sat. and Tues. It was 4 below this a.m. We are getting used to the cold. We sit up till 11, when Daddy goes to fix hospital fires. He expects me to have his place nice and warm. I keep the hot water bottle there all day. He got up and went over 2 mornings at 4, then came home and slept on couch till 8.

He returned 3 books to library and got 6 new ones tonight. Such nonsense in some of them-next thing we know we’ll be going to the moon on our 40th anniversary in a rocketship. You youngsters will be going to some planet on your honeymmon and your grandchildren will be visiting Earth, some such foolishness as that. I’d rather read missionary books like I’ve been doing lately. Famchons finished I. Gouzenko, returned it, and Mrs. Macdonald brought it back today.

Judy is improving and is able to be up. She is eating well now, without sugar of course. Sounds as though she will be weeks in hosp., and will not be able to return to school. I go every day to see her. Got her started on knitting today. People are really good to her. She was delighted with the note paper I gave her (which you left) and has been writing thank you notes.

Wasn’t it awful the way thieves broke into Clifton’s home! Dorothy told me today. Their Raymond will have to be built up and then have tonsils removed. He eats his porridge, drinks some milk and mainly bananas. Well we feel sorry for the Aunties [Miss Banks] again. Bill has had another heart attack. So it may mean the Aunties will look after the children while Miriam works. They do not know what to do, but they will not let them down. Bill just could not keep from working, couldn’t realize, I suppose doctor said no work for him.

Bro. Collett will be here for supper on Friday; he was at Howard’s today. He and Howard were to be stationed at the same place when in the S. Army. Prayermeetings are being held in afternoons, maybe here on Friday Daddy says he had better get up and go over [to the hospital]; it is 10 after 11. He will be glad when this cold snap is over, but he is going to be happy when it breaks. He says he has a good system though, and that the thermostat makes such a difference. Now, “where are my mittens, I brought them home.”

Margy, Mrs. Daniels phoned on Sat. to say a telegram came from Bill, thrilled with a daughter 6 lbs. 1 oz. I think.

Daddy just came in; he says it was 6 below last night at this time and it is 8 above now; so it may warm up.

Date: winter of 1958-59
From: Emily Mott
To: Marjorie & Bill (Wright, and family in Revelstoke)

This afternoon I went to visit Alice and Mrs. Smith, who told me you wrote her a letter, which cheered her. She may have to stay in [the hospital] during March, as it takes a long time. She may be able to try to walk next week, but she is patient. It is evening again, and evenings are never long enough. I went again [to the hospital] to take books to Alice and Mrs. Smith, as they had finished those they had. Mrs. Smith finished her embroidery, so I must find something for her to do. Alice has less pain now. Mrs. Richardson is very low. I see George walking about the hall as soon as Sylvia goes home; it is pathetic, as he is up and down. Shirley C. is in try to avoid a miscarriage.

On Wednesday we cleaned the church, so it will look well for World’s Day of Prayer Friday 13th. Moe McLachlin will send flowers, isn’t that nice?

Tonight is prayermeeting at Harold Smith’s, but since the roads are icy, we leave the car in. We took a taxi to pr. mtg. at church on Tuesday.

Now it is bedtime and Daddy is almost finished his book. I have been rejoicing in the way the Lord has used His missionaries in Africa. As I knelt to pray at 11, I just know God will come to your help; both of you must put your trust in his healing power. He lead you together and by His hand you’ve been lead these more than four years. Satan would do his level best to interfere, but you are God’s dear children, putting Him first in everything.

Friday 7.35 a.m. It is 20 [F] above. Thurs. at 6 a.m. it was 6 above. Naturally Daddy and I thought of you and of course kept praying last thing at night, during the night when he got up to see to fires [hospital furnaces], and first thing this morning.

Bertha came home from Coast, where the specialist told her he would not operate. She knows she could go at any time. We do need to pray for her. She cannot word, and that is very hard on her. George W. resigned this week.

Doc and Doreen are leaving next Thurs. as Joyce is to be married on the 20th in Calgary. Ruth is icing the cake.

Date: fall of 1955
From: Emily Mott
To: Marjorie & Bill Wright (in Masset)

Mrs. B. just finished a sweater for Bud.

Mrs. MacDonald told me about Jean who married a mountie and moved from Penticton to Stuart BC. Apparently it is anything but pleasant up there. Their good friends do not intend to stay any longer, but are moving soon. He is a doctor. Jean would not be able to endure it except for their baby. Dr.s have one the same age.

I’ve been upstairs getting beds ready for D.Q. M. guests. If it keeps snowing and roads icy, perhaps not many will come. Anyhow all will be inreadiness for Preston and his friends, L.J. and Lyle, Mom & Dad Barnes and Lorne. If Ellen comes she may have to sleep on chesterfield.

I hope you can get foil to wrap your turkey before putting in roaster. It is really wonderful, as you’ll not need to keep wondering if it is burning. Of course even without it, your roaster will do a good job. You just need to baste it more often and you could lay slices of bread on top or make a jacket to lay on top–just from flour & water, like you’ve seen me do. The main thing is to get it in the oven in plenty time and give it lots of time to cook through slowly. You’ll do alright.

The Wooters have another baby girl.

Sue will be married between Christmas and N.Y. just quietly, as her sister will be married in June and the dad cannot afford to pay for 2 weddings. They have a small house rented and Sue will work. Mrs. B. made the cake. Daddy had the honour of giving the first stir, then the others took their turns.

Rev. Peel was only 38. They thought he was getting better, but he died on Tues. Cancer seemed to be all through him. They had 2 little girls, Carol and Sharon. Olive said it gave her a start. They listen to him at 9 a.m. Sundays, at least to their Pent. broadcast. Since he was ill, Lyle Preston has been speaking. Olive says he is splendid.

Date: late fall of 1955
From: Emily Mott
To: Marjorie & Bill Wright (in Masset)

After supper Mr. Cuthbert asked Daddy to come for evening. He is home now and says he had the most spiritual talk with him ever.He has so hoped to help him find light. Things are so serious people are beginning to think. Mr. Giglardi read Daniel 11:23. He says it is being fulfilled right now.

I actually got all notes except Mary King’s finished. Now I can open machine and get the mending done. Then there’ll be baking to do for Christmas holidays.

Snow fell so fast, and roads were icy as not many came to D. Q. M. Bro. Root was encouraged because of the good spirit here. The Angells came for suppon on Sat. & returned home for Sunday. We were at the J.M. James’ for Sun. dinner and at Allins for supper. I asked the James’ 8 for Mon. supper as we needed help to finish up food I’d prepared.

Thurs. 8 am. there was a fire in Willet’s Drug Kelowna, resulting mostly in smoke dmamge.

It is only 8 above [F]: that is better than zero Wed. However we are promised ‘colder’ on Fri. WCTU at Audrey’s. I’m mailing Helen Miller her prize. Good old Alberta wrote her the first letter she received from S’land.

Well you were busy sending out cards; I hear this often ‘Marjorie sent me a card.’ Ruth made floursack aprons. She is very happy about the new [sewing] machine. You should see the difference since they’ve made a change in the parsonage. It is away better. Plumber’s bill is hight, but it includes a new bath tub at least. Carpentery has been done by Joe [James], Mr. Moore, John, Howard and Mr. Allin.

Daddy may need to take battery out of car and have it charged. Bad roads kept us from going to Pent. Short trips have been few too.

Bill, you sound just like Grandpa Mott, showing off that wonderful baby of yours. We don’t blame you, and we noticed, because we loved and made a lot of our four, others thought they were alright too. If parents to not appreciate their children, neither do others.

Don’t let Norma get a knife in her hand. I mean when she is old enough to grab things. They did not tell us how Janice cut her lip, poor little thing. But earlier she cut between her thumb & finger with a knife. Teach N.J. strict obedience.

Now I must say bye and you’ll have a happy Christmas with each other and your precious gift from God.

Date: November or early December 1955
From: Emily Mott
To: Bill Wright (son-in-law) (in Masset)

Dear Bill: Well, you can see someone has been monkeying with my machine [typewriter]. Ken Killick was trying it out last night. We had them all and Grandma from 4 to church time.

This morning we have been hoeing around trees and putting foil around most of them to prevent mouse damage. Already mice have been busy, but we hope the snow stays away until Wednesday, so we shall be able to get them all finished.

4:30 Monday. I’ll try again. This ribbon is supposed to work automatically, but I don’t think it does.

Daddy and I just came in awhile ago from doing trees. We still have another day’s work. He was supposed to acct as pall-bearer at Mr. Kelt’s funeral today, but his daughter could not get through. She came from Indiana to Vanc. by plane, so cannot get here until tomorrow due to fog. This is once we are glad we live in the Okanagan.

Joe [James] preached a wonderful sermon Sun. a.m., using as his text, Blessed are the merciful… His dad was so determined to sell and go to Africa… Poor man looked beaten and discouraged yesterday, for he planned to leave on Friday. No buyer came; he wanted $8,500 for his place. Who of us wouldn’t like to be a missionary, when we were younger, but 77 seems pretty old to start out. He means the very best of course. It was in the S’land Review.

10 p.m. Lee spent a lot of time visiting us this evening. I sorted papers to be given away. Besides I put in some time soaking my right arm in first hot and then cold water; a wasp stung me yesterday as I reached for a towel in the bathroom closet. My arm was red and warm, but it is alright now. One wonders just what is going to happen in the far East. Everybody blames everybody else, it seems. It is good to know whatever happens, God is still on the throne.

We visited Mrs. Famchon on Sunday. She thinks she will be able to be up and about in about two weeks’ time. She is cheerful as ever; and we were glad to see her bible beside her bed. As the Aunties [Miss Banks] say, let’s keep praying that all is well with her soul. God is understanding and merciful.

Date: November 1957?
From: Emily Mott
To: Bill & Marjorie Wright (Masset BC)

Thank you! Yes that’s just what we want to say to you, Bill and Marjorie, for the pretty anniv. card from all 4 of you–and the ‘kitchen paint price.’ Like we said when we opened it on Thurs. you should not do such! However, we went to Mel Counsins on Sat. and bought the paint. Perhaps I may start next week, or even this.

Now we are at DeWitt’s for a supper mtg. of S.S. Bd. [Sunday School Board] and teachers. This is Helen Smith’s first time to see the station, and of course DeWitt’s home. Tues. am. Have breakfast read, waiting for Daddy to come

My varnished floors look very nice. Folks enjoyed Camera club mtg. Geo., Carrie & Sylvia came early to have a visit with us. I didn’t know them remembered it was our anniv.

Tonight is Anita’s shower here. Wedding is to be on Fri. night.

Doreen says we’ll be getting inv. to her folks 50 anniv. June 17.

We did enjoy very much the Gideon mtg. & banquet. A United Ch. layman M.D. spoke. He said ‘Praise the Lord’ etc. He was really on fire for God.

Ed. Erickson is in Pent. He took ill again and his girl, Evelyn Nyen–mind you–spent a week with him, while he was in hospital. I was sorry miss seeing her last Wed. She asked about you, when talking to the other Motts. They did not know Ed was engaged.

All day when we remember we pray for Preston–marked on calendar–times for exams. He got letters from you & me same day. I sent a date cake in a tin. Letters to us last week from all of you. Aunties [Miss Banks] gave us choc. I didn’t know they’d remember.

Dr. says many of these people cannot expect to get over them [colds] till summer. Alice is sick again. Coughs last and last.

Geo. Graham is home–in rather a bad way–sight not good–doesn’t want visitors.

Date: November 3, 1955
From: John Mott
To: Bill and Marjorie Wright and Norma (Masset BC)

Mother is busy these days she will likely be working a week yet [in the cannery]. Howard M said that they expected to be done next Thursday.

When I get so I cannot work, don’t let mother work to support herself. It is alright for her to work for two or three weeks to get a little spending money, and she enjoys being out with the girls.

We had a snowstorm yesterday and it is gone again. Yesterday forenoon the cars were stuck on the hills. Mother and Vi walked to work. Mr. McDonald, and Murial walked to school. but it is normal again. The Hope, Princeton road is closed, a slide east of Hope. You don’t have road troubles there do you?

I intended to write a longer letter but have been busy today and, we are having class meeting tonight so want to mail this on the way. On Tuesday night we were down to hear Commissioner Boothe the grandson of General Wm. Booth it was a grand meeting, we enjoyed it very much, Joe took us and some others in his car so the meeting was put off so we could have a day between to rest up.

You said that Norma has a big frame, well you were like that. I had visions of you being 5 ft. 8″ or 10″, and being big in proportion but see what happened. At ten months you were a big heavy girl, the biggest of all. So it is hard to tell how Norma will turn out. [As an adult: 5 ft. 1″ and 106 lb!]

Date: Spring 1956?
From: John Mott
To: Bill and Marjorie Wright (Masset BC)

I have just changed the sprinklers, there will be likely as many apricots as last year, there will be enough cherries to give N.J. the tummy ache, some peaces, and about the same amoung of pears as last year. And a few prunes. Your help will be very welcome. Apples and cherries are hardest hit. Where apples are reported good, or fair, they are MacIntosh or Wealthys.

The books came last week, we have them all unpacked and coffee table full and some over. They are a fine lot of books. Lee our Chinese nurse helped Preston unpack them.

Summerland Golden Jubilee is past. Yesterday was the big day. We were out to the parade. I took a number of pictures of the floats etc. There were a good number floats, bands, etc. The must of have been over 30.

I have never done anything at photography [referring to developing film]. I hope Bill will have time while here to do a lot at it for me. I have the ambition but when I get my days work done it seems I cannot get at it. Maybe we can do some color, I would get a tank and what is needed. I used Anscochrome yesterday, hope it turns out well.

I am looking forward to seeing you all, and having you stay with us as much as you possibly can.

Date: March 1957
From: Emily Mott
To: Bill and Marjorie Wright and family (Masset BC)

This has been a sunny, mild day. I decided I’d better go over to visit the neighbor in the Prior house, but found she had gone up town. You should see how many trees are missing, due to frost of course. The place has had very little care since Wes left, but likely Bob Butler will do his best. I see he has been giving it the dormant spray.

Mrs. Famchon is not quite as comfortable as she was. She showed me her ankles, and she was swelled around the middle a couple days ago. She told me Mary makes such good-smelling food, but she cannot eat it. However she chews some of it and then spits it out. I felt so sorry for her this morning; she even sucked chicked bones. She wanted to go over home to see the folks yesterday, so they took her about 4, but she was rather tired today. She let me read Alice’s letter. This afternoon I saw Mrs. Snow and Mrs. Jacobs walking down to see her. Every day visitors come. I can see she is a little weaker, and stays more in bed. I’ve been down 3 times this week; took violets from our garden and Amaryllis blooms. We must hold her up in prayer.

What a nice visit we had at the Embree’s last night, good supper and pictures which Bernard sent home, tapes, too. The Aunties [Miss Banks] said it is so nice to be in a home where Christ is honoured. They mentioned the good times we used to have together, our two families. Maretta has had quite a time with their baby, colic so much of the time. Arlene has a pretty face, and she is nice.

I am writing on the back of letter [from Summerland Co-operative Growers’ Association] just to let you know what and how things are being done at the Co-op. now. At the meeting last Friday night they decided to have apples taken down to be loaded right onto the flatcar and put on a barge and unloaded at the Co-op at Kelowna. Soft fruit will be cared for here. In 1949 every bit of space was needed, but since the frost damage, there has been room to spare. So the new packinghouse will be smaller and very up-to-date.

[The letter from the Co-op reads in part: After several Board meetings, and meetings with other members of the Fruit Industry held this week, your Directors are now in a position to assure you that your crop will be adequately and economically packed and cold stored for the coming season…. The main topics of the Agenda for this meeting will be: (1) Report on the handling of the 1957 crop. (2) Decision as to future plans for rebuilding a packing and cold storage plant. Please note that our office is now located in the cabins on the west side of the street south of the Fish Hatchery. We still have the old phone number 5266. For fertilizer and spray materials, phone 5366 or contact Phil Dunsdon at the Dispatcher’s office on our property next to the Cornwall Cannery… G. Washington, Manager.]

Sheila Green came on Sat. and stayed a couple hours; she is a cute little 13-yr.old today, Wed. She fell off her bicycle on Sunday and was in hosp. till Tues. when she came again to visit us. Her glasses are broken, nose cut and bandaged and her lip stitched, and her right, no left arm broken, no wrist, it was. She borrowed some books; is a great reader.

We had a good prayermeeting. Carol, Marjorie, Anita and Helen M. came as usual. John comes, and so does Norman. We may go with them to hear Ed. Erickson in Kelowna tomorrow night. He preaches on Hell tonight. He has visited 22 countires and preached.

Date: Oct 27, 1955
From: John Mott
To: Bill and Marjorie Wright and Norma (Masset B)

We sent your things by Express this forenoon, and hope that they arrive in good shapte.

Now don’t worry about money. We are glad to pay these things and don’t ask for anything. I tell you what, instead of paying anything, you and Norma come and help us pick fruit next summer if there is a good crop your work would pay everything and more.

We had the privilege of two weddings the last two summers [daughters Marjorie and Laura], and have them all paid for, and are glad that you are happy.

It is cooler this week, it was 30 [F] this morning. It has rained some today and there is snow on the mountains.

We are well. Mother had today off as the pears were not ripe enough. She is getting a lot of things done at home. She will be going back tomorrow. We are going to see the Graham picture ‘Souls in Conflict’ at the Highschool. The Bible society picture tomorrow night at the Pentecostal Church.

Date: unknown
From: Emily Mott
To: Marjorie

Dearie me–I forgot to tell you Mrs. Jas. Ritchie 80 married a new husband 84. They flew to Hawaii on their honeymoon for 2 months, mind you. Just shows folks should not interfere with young love. They were engaged when she was 19, but maw said not so. He was a telegrapher on the railroad and it would mean too much morning here and yon. So after all these years with their mates gone, they have met up and that’s it.

Date: Thursday Sept. 6th (year not indicated, but must be 1955 or 1956 by the details)
From: Emily Mott
To: Marjorie, Bill and N.J. (in Masset)

It is 10:30 and I’m getting sleepy, but I want to get a letter started tonight. Have just finished putting jam in jars. Daddy set up the sawdust burner today [at the hospital]; it was a heavy thing to do alone, but that’s him all over. The plumber was supposed to put it in place, but he evidently sent someone to deliver it, intending to come himself later. The people are cold in the old part [of the hospital], that is in the early morning, so Daddy went to bed at 9 and will be up and over at 5 to fire up first time since May.

The toilet tank has been leaking and getting worse, so the plumber is to bring a new one, if he ever gets here.

Beryl received many nice gifts, including 10 tablecloths–you see they are easier to take a long distance… Rhodena gave them sheet and slips in blue, bedspread and several towels. Mrs. Moore said it was a lot for R. and Ben to give, but she said “Well, she is my only sister.” We had a nice visit with R. and Ben at the reception.

L.J. [Laura Joyce Mott], Ruth and I decorated the church… The wind had battered some of the flowers down that morning, but every person who talked about the decorations, said the flowers looked alright. After we finished, Ruth sent us a piece of blueberry pie topped with icecream. Mrs. Allin had brought the berries from Lulu Island.

Life is eternity’s seed-time; seed well. Thought for today.

Date: December 1955 or 1956
From: Emily Mott
To: Marjorie & Bill Wright & N.J.

I was just saying to Popsie this is Wed. and a letter must get in the mail earlier, so as to avoid possible rush. Lillian is helping in P.O. here, and others.

Mrs. Ken Boothe was cutting kindling with hatchet. She cut off a finger & injured 3. We felt ill when we heard it. We enjoyed her visit the evening Daddy showed pictures. Tonight she was to sing at H.S. auditorium.

Oh, these notes in with these cards–let’s see I have perhaps 8 or 10 to do yet. Daddy wrote 3 letters. Today I wrote to Bill’s folks. Weather is awaful on prairies, blizzards–ooh! Again our therm. dropped to zero [F]. Sun glistened on snow all day, so pretty it was–and at dusk snow had a blue tint like I love it.

Our house was all fixed for company. I sent Daddy upstairs to have a look. Well nobody stayed, so beds are ready for Christmas company.

Date: spring 1956
From: Emily Mott
To: Bill and Marjorie Wright & N.J.

This is a really warm day. Everything is moving, even ant hills. Columbines are out & so many plants which survived. I see a few leaves on walnut tree at front a a few on grape vine at the hen yard. Now to get cuke seeds planted and squash. And corn for you.

The Schumann orchard looks bare. Shirley tells us her baby is really doing well.

Donald & Marion’s baby is coming on well, a lovely baby, and she is able to nurse him so far.

Date: Nov. 28, 1956
From: John Mott
To: Emily Mott (helping family at the Coast)

Dear Mom–am wondering how everyone is. Since you left last night it seems a long time.

Mrs. B. was concerned this morning. Bud told her about you going. [Saw her buying her ticket. Just Ruth and Audrey knew she was going to the coast]. I had dinner at the hospital. Annie P. phoned up and I told you had gone in to Vancouver, so I am going for dinner tomorrow to their place.

I got the dishes washed this evening. I will have to go now to prayer metting so will finish it and mail it before I come home.

After meeting, George is coming to stay with me tomorrow night. He told me to tell you that he is going to fatten me up. Goodbye for this time.

Your loving husband.

Date: 1956
From: John Mott
To: Marjorie and Bill Wright, Masset

We have had a nice fall so far, but it is gradually getting colder. I am quite well again.

I am selling my Argus and am buying a Diax 11a camera. I am getting $50.00 for mine and will have to pay $75.00 as well, the trouble is the $75.00 I have tried it out it is a dandy, it is F2.8 goes to 1/500 second, has many fine qualities and takes very sharp pictures. I am still keeping the Buccaneer, it is really a fine camera.

Date: Dec. 13, 1956
From: John Mott
To: Marjorie and Bill Wright, Masset.

Geo. & Carrie [Mott] bought a new house and moved in last night. It was built by Mrs. Biambly’s [sp?] brother, it is on the road that Geo. Washingtons are on. I think it is east of them on the same side of the road. I haven’t been to see them yet, the road is icy and I haven’t taken the car out for a few days. It is mild tonight and I hope the ice goes.

It looks we will just have Preston with us for Christmas. We expect to be with Geo & Carrie and the Shaws. Also have invited Dick and annie.

George & Norman [Mott] have been over 2 months on the Park being built on what was the cat ranch. They think tomorrow will be the last day to work before Christmas.

We had it cold last week it was down to -6 [F] below zero. On Sunday we had a thaw–that took all the snow–then we had snow since I think on Monday.

I thought when I got the enlarger of Bill’s I would get a lot done but it seems that when I get work I have to do alone I cannot get at it, and doing it is put off from time to time, that is the result of getting old.

I have the new camera now, I traded the Argus on it, I am keeping Buccaneer I know it and like it. I have taken some fine pictures with it. I realize more all the time what a fine family I have. Your mother has done well raising you all.

[Emily adds:] Edith & Al Williams moved to Capt. Jenkinson’s house between Smith & Henry & Baptist church–that little blue house. Mrs. Moore is happy to be better & home from hospital. Mrs. Famchon got your card on Wed. She was pleased. She keeps about as usual. Mrs. Clark had same & lived 14 mos.

Date: Feb. 28, 1956
From: Emily Mott
To: Marjorie and Bill Wright, Masset

From the window I saw cards at 2:30 Miss Truscot’s burial. She died on Sunday night. Elsie phoned to ask Joe if I’d like to come with him to the funeral, but I have had a bit of cold or flu or whatever it was. I taught my class on Sun a.m. but did not go at night. The Childerhoses came for a couple hours and we had a nice visit. Leslie & Lillian (is it) have 2 children. She specials often at night. Lawrence and Faith are doing well. Glen and Jean are working and saving too and are happy

Wesley W.and another driver bumped on icy road on Sat. night. Insurance covers their cards.

I used a lot of Kleenex on Mon. & Tues. so decided to stay in bed till noon today. I’m find and intend to go to pr. meeting tonight. So many who had flu were nreally down with it–high temps and severe coughs and many with chest colds. All Daddy and I had was very light. He felt miserable but did not miss work. So we are thankful. Dr. Munn had it and he says there is nothing to help except stay in bed and rest. Mrs. MacDonald was really sick.

Date: Late fall 1955
From: Emily Mott
To: Marjorie and Bill Wright, Masset

We spent the evening at Alma and Jack Brown’s house. It is now 11:15. I am ready for bed and Daddy is fixing hosp. fires [hospital furnaces]. Morris and Jean were married on Monday, so Alma, Isobel and Pearl planned their reception. Mr. & Mrs. Bolton just came down today, after a 3 month stay at the cabins. The just-weds will spend a week or 10 days up there, while the folks live here. Old friends were there tonight, Audrey & Mrs. Milne, 2 Arndt girls 2 or 3 Y.P. Baptist girls, Jack & Mr. McDougald, Frankie & Roy, Chas. Miller & wife, the Aunties [Miss Banks] and the Brown relatives. Because snow is still falling Miss Dale and others did not attempt to take out cars because of ice under the snow. Mr. Cuthbert made the hill after about 10 attempts.

Thurs. a.m. I wonder how many went to pr. mtg. We would not have attempted it. It was bad enough going as far as Brown’s. It has quit snowing, I see. Daddy is still at hospital 7:45; perhaps clearing paths.

Preston may bring a negro from Trinidad for the holidays. Ellen will come with the Barnes if she can arrange it.

News is on. Solon Low suffered a heart attack on the eve of Soc. Credit convention.

This is National S.D. Day in Can. & USA. Three have been killed in U.S.A. since it began at 12 midnight. It lasts for 24 hours. In 1954 more than 25 000 were killed and a startling number hospitalized.

And now it is snowing again more heavily than at any time yesterday. It is nearly 8:30. Daddy will be hungry. I watched him using his rigged-up snow plow. Really we wonder what has happened to our country. Daddy tramped around young pear trees yesterday but found no sign of mouse damage.

Wes Davis and boys got a deer.

I want to get your parcel ready today. It looks big but it is just some stocking things etc. At least it will be something to open on Christmas morning.

I have a bundle of S.S. papers [Sunday School] saved for you.

We had Mrs. Scott and her sister, Mrs. Ken Booth’s mother, over to see pictures on Tues. night. Toots is very much interested. She came for her mother and stayed to see all the pictures Daddy had showed to the others. Mrs. Milne asked us to dinner on Tues. but we had already changed from Mon. to Tues. for Mrs. Scott, so could not postpone again. I walked up to see J.M.S. [Junior Missionary Society] program on Monday night. All the children did well. Turnout was poor on account of snow.

I looked out front window and saw 2 nurses, the younger ones, making a snowman on their lawn. Then I saw a man ehlping–and there he was–Grandpa lifting the big snowball head and placing it for the girls. He brought them coal for eyes.

Mrs. Irwin is home from Tranquille looking like 16 they say. He follows her around and can’t keep his eyes off her. God answered prayer.

Yesterday Mr. B. was waiting in the kitchen for Mrs. B. the girls were working around getting supper. Daddy stood at the door and said, ‘My three daughter are better looking than any of these girls.’ Leona said, ‘Well that’s what any dad should say about his daughters.’ (Mr. B. was married first time when quite young. His wife died after marriage 1 1/2 years).

Wes W. borrowed the silk hat, which he wore last Sat. as he went up and down streets with placards fore and aft to adv. his service.

Dorothy will sing at Kathleen’s wedding Dec. 19. She will have a shower for her Dec. 9.

Sorry to hear you have no minister [at the Masset church]. Do you ever think of the Christians all over the universe who pray for other Christians–so you are remembered by a great host.

Daddy says Bill is fortunate to have a ‘clever’ wife to take over and let him have a change and a rest. We had to smile when you said Bill had to take soda. Perhaps those pots of yours are aluminum instead of steel? Remember Mr. Tom Graham and Mona took soda for years, because of ‘upset stomach.’ Mrs. Milnes tells us now that since they changed over to steel, he has no further trouble, can eat anything and is fine. Now that the family gave us steel pots, we, too, should have perfect digestion. How about it, Bill? Of foucrse Marjorie must have a competent husband, who can take over the house and be nurse maid as well. Bill, you’ll have to take a lesson from your little daughter–relax, be happy, and remember you have a loving, merciful, kind Heavenly Father. Lean upon His promises. He’ll bless you in mind, soul, body and Spirit. Rest in the Lord!

Winnie and Elizabeth went to coast today. Mrs. Tilman had cancer of the breast.

So many people including Mrs. MacD lost gladioli, dahlias etc. They were dug and in garage. Just the 1 frost on Nov 10 or 11 took them.

The Fraser Valley reports catastrophe. Roses seem to be the worst hit, and strawb.

We had a pretty pink hyacinth and now a pure white one is blooming, in a pot of course.