A Mother’s Day Picnic, 1937

Diary Entry from Mayell Sunshine, the mystery woman who once lived in our house.

“When I was a child, I remember gathering wildflowers or making cards in Sunday school for my dear mother for Mother’s Day.  Now that she is gone and I have no children of my own, Mother’s Day makes me feel a bit melancholic.

Today was much too nice to stay that way though, and the quickest way I know to stop feelings of morose is to do something for someone else.

I called on Mrs. Honeycutt, Mrs. Furr, Mrs. Smith, and young Mrs.Efird and told them about my plans for a Mother’s Day picnic, to celebrate all of them.   I asked them to meet me at the edge of Pumpkin Creek at 4:00 this afternoon for a surprise.

The grown children of the elder ladies have moved to far-off states, but Mrs. Efird has 3 rambunctious boys and a precious new baby girl.  I thought it would do everyone good to gather together, if only for a little while.

Quickly, I set to work, making delicious and easy-to-carry things for us to eat.  I made tiny sandwiches filled with bits of ham, little cakes with strawberry jam filling and buttercream icing, and King Leo peppermints for Mrs. Efird’s little boys, for a special treat, and a big thermos of lemonade.

Pumpkin Creek is really just a small spring branch, but it is a lovely, shaded spot where violets and watercress grow.  It reminds me of a place where fairies and elves would live. 
It is already beautiful, but I wanted to make it extra pretty for my friends.  I had some leftover scraps of crepe paper so I fashioned paper flowers to hang in the trees and made a garland with some old fabric scraps.

After I got everything ready, I packed it all in a small wooden rolling cart that I borrowed from Mr. Hunnycutt.  I was certainly happy to have that because otherwise, I would have had to make many trips back to the house.

The afternoon was golden and the gentle rays of sunshine, peaking through the leaves gave the picnic area an ethereal look.

I set out two quilts next to the creek, hung up the paper flowers in the trees, and stretched the garland over some wild grape vines.  Then I carefully set out our picnic food.  I wanted everything to be perfect for my guests when they arrived.

All of the older ladies traveled in Mrs. Hunnycutt’s 1932 Chevrolet Confederate Sedan and Mrs. Efird and her little ones walked since they live so close by.

I don’t know who enjoyed the picnic more, the ladies or Mrs. Efird’s children.  The boys were delighted with the woodland playground that they found upon arrival, and the peppermint candies were a hit as they had never tasted them before.

All four ladies said that it was a Mother’s Day to remember and each of them thanked me kindly for the little picnic.

Tonight as I write this,  I am thankful for friends to have a picnic with.  Lively conversation to lift my spirits and for the people in this new community who have lovingly welcomed me.

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