Can’t title this one ‘Bathing Beauty’ because that little girl is me, but I can say that I wish I was still that cute.
This is our kitchen in 1955. Notice my brother’s Roy Rogers lunch pail on the counter; or it could have been my sister’s. These were the cabinets we had until my dad and brother started their new business venture, Edens and Son General Contractors.
Daddy had a very strong work ethic (his first job was taking drinking water out to the oil field workers in Oklahoma at age six, about 1915), but McDonald Douglas Aircraft+government contracts= frequent layoffs. When the contract ran out, he would work at home remodeling, construction, roofing; whatever he could find and it was usually in the winter.
(Notice the clothes pin bag hanging by the back door on the left. This time Daddy doesn’t have a cigarette, that’s a kitchen match in his mouth; he smoked a lot and if he didn’t have a cigarette in his mouth, he usually had a toothpick or a matchstick there.)
Anyway, about 1965 his income became much steadier and bountiful. It wasn’t long before my parents decided the kitchen needed a new look. My brother and sister-in-law had bought a new home and my mother liked her cabinets so much that she used Carolyn’s as a model.
The appliances were kind of a chocolate brown, the stovetop was set into the counter, and the oven was built into the cabinet area. 60s modern! No more bending over to look inside. Right after this photo was taken, they bought a matching brown side-by-side Sears refrigerator. Sears Best. And it must have been, because that refrigerator lasted until about 1994!
Antiques were not popular then, and my mother has never really understood their attraction, unless it’s the really high end items. She said she grew up with old stuff and she didn’t want any more of it. (Funny because that’s what my friend said the day we went to the antique mall and tea room. That was her first trip to an antique store and she didn’t understand the allure of wash boards, etc.) So, every 4 or 5 years, we’d get new furniture or a new car. My parents really knew the value of a dollar and got the most for it. We never shopped in south Tulsa (the affluent area) but they got as good a value for their money as they could. Daddy was a Ford man. I only knew one person who drove a Buick or an Oldsmobile and that was my uncle who worked for an oil company.
All that was to say, that when our income went up, my parents responded by improving what they had instead of going for something bigger and nicer. They remodeled the kitchen and then paid off the mortgage on the house about 4 years later.
Mingo is no longer there. Well, of course, the land is still there and some of the trees but in 1992, the airport bought all the land and moved everyone out because of the noise problem. The houses are gone. What remains of my mother’s new kitchen is a cabinet door they removed when Daddy bought her a new dishwasher and had it installed. My husband drilled holes in the old door to make us a Wa-hoo board.
I’m so glad he did.