Monday, February 11, 2013

Songs my mother taught me # 9

Air, snow and a carpet beater.

 Since my mother didn't have a washing machine or a vacuum cleaner when I was a very active and curious toddler, she had to think before throwing clothes to wash.
She had different ways of stain removing based upon the origin of the stain. Her thumb-finger rule was, always be quick to remove a stain. Don't let it fasten. Try cold water, no soap, first, except from fat, which can only be removed by hot water. Be sure to check out what the fabric can take from soap, heat e.t.c. If you don't know, make a try on a place where it can not be seen, if you should fail. A newspaper or even better a blotting-paper and a hot iron will suck up stains from candlelights. If you let the stain soak for awhile (over night) it will be easier to remove. Never, ever soak wool, it will shrink.(Thanks Mrs. Mac.)
My mother would always hang a used garment out for venting, even if it wasn't stained. Clothes and bed linens were "blowing in the wind" every day, summer and winter.  

Heavier items, like carpets and cushions were thrown into snow and beaten with a carpet beater, while they were dragged around in the white, snowy garden. They were turned and tossed and I remember my Dad had to carry them into the house, when he came home from the office. The arm chairs got a similar treatment on the veranda outside our living-room. No vacuumer could replace the snow and the beater. The chairs were eventually moved into my brother's room. We got to keep our rooms long after we left home. My parents would insure us, we were always welcome home, often bringing guests as well. The arm chairs were upholstered at least four times. Here sort of in between redressing.
Serina and I are busy wrapping Christmas gifts while bro Kel is in his favourite position, reading.


  Gunnar and I have help washing our home due to disabilities. They do not do carpet or cushion beating though. We still have to manage that piece on our own. It's actually frightening to see how much dust is left even after vacuuming.

Not much snow, but it does the job for the plaid and cushions.

Ruby Tuesday 2


Mrs. Mac said...

Your mother was a kindred spirit! We have even more dust now that we heat with wood. Everyday is 'dust' day. Love the photos. Hugs,

Karen said...

A lovely nostalgic post! I still beat my small rugs outside in the summer, but I have never heard of cleaning items in snow!

Ralph said...

Is that you in front of a radio? I only remember using a vacuum as with seven children being tended to some labor saving was necessary. We didn't beat the dust ouf of rugs in my home, bur Patti's mother did pound the dirt out of seasonal rugs. That is a lot of work, but your mom did things the right way before the advent of labor saving machines...nice memories

Unknown said...

I really enjoyed reading about the snow cleaning - so interesting!

Felisol said...

Yes, this is me about 2 years old. Always been a reader.. We got machines later on.. about 57 or so, but my mother never stopped snow washing her rugs and chairs or vending clothes.
Just try after vacuuming and see how much dust and dirt the snow will cash up, and also how the colors brightens after a snow wash. I have lots of vintage cushions. This is definitely the best way of cleansing them.

Magical Mystical Teacher said...

Sounds like a hard way to clean rugs, but it would keep you fit and trim!

Ruby Cactus Blossoms

Felisol said...

Exactly. My Mom kept her home tidy and clean while I had to rent help for the cleaning.She never worked, but she loved hiking with my dad in the mountains in week-ends.
She four times recovered from severe illnesses. She used to say, "I'm not strong, but I just don't give in easily."
She also did what we all should do, run a clean household with a minimum of toxic chemicals.

Jackie said...

I too beat my rugs outside just as my mother did before me. These are wonderful pictures!

I love the black and white. Is that you when you were little?

I hope you have a great week!
Jackie Expression Needed :-)

Felisol said...

Yes, it's me you see in the black & white picture. Doing what I always did best, making a mess on the ground level. Reading was always a favorite, even when I could not read.

Liz said...

What a great post. Those tips really work and I would rather do them than use chemical based stain removers.

My entries:
Liz (mcn)
Liz (mot)

Crown of Beauty said...

Amazing mother, that is what I can say, after all that I have read of what she used to do. I loved the photos as well. We do not get snow here, but we do dry our clothes and bed linen out in the sun. On really hot days, we do not need to use the spinner at all, just wring each clothing well, then drip dry on the clothes lines. The sun dried clothes really smell so fresh and crisp. I can imagine your snow washed carpets - but it must have taken them a long time to dry up?

Wishing you a Happy Valentine's Day, dear Felisol!

Felisol said...

: ) My Mom would also hang clothes out in the sun to dry in the summer. She said the sun would make it extra healthy. She sniffed the clothes when she carried them indoors again. "Ah, sun odeur". The snow had to be fairly dry when she did the carpet rinsing, powder snow or hard snow with soft snow under. Not wet snow like we have about zero Celsius.
I love this writing these legacy posts about my mother. It's therapeutic, and it makes me happy to honor her. My brother, who is reading these posts, says they are doing him good as well.
I guess she wasn't that particular to other Norwegian mothers, but she was mine and she was great till the end. said...

I can just picture my own mother in your words. My mother also had a mangle, a roller that steamed up when you plugged it in, and every sheet and pillowcase was run through it unless it had already hung outside in the breeze. I still say that our generation of mothers was something very special. They just took life on and did the work. I'm afraid I am much less inclined...

You are right Felisol, writing your memories is helping your own heart to heal. Mine was the same, and all these years later, I am STILL writing memories of them.

steveroni said...

Felisol, I am "on the run" but felt compalled to stop here and write in regard to your comment on Lidj's blog.

I must realize that the farther away from God and Goodness I "feel" I am, usually the CLOSER I really have moved.

Then comes the thinking that I must stop beating myself in those thoughts of negativity--I am stealing time from helping another, who might be in emotional or physical need.
GOTTA GO, girl!
See you soon again here!

Chubskulit Rose said...

We had accumulation from yesterday's snow fall... Love the first photo.

Trying to catch up with Ruby Tuesday!

I hope you'd come and leave me a comment on my Valentine Rubies

Have an enjoyable LOVE day!!

Debbie Petras said...

Oh my, what you've written reminds me of my grandmother who was born in Norway. She used to beat rugs like that too. I have to say that I really enjoyed seeing the photos!

Happy Valentine's Day to you Felisol.


Amrita said...

Beautiful family memories

Trish said...

Oh Felisol, the things our Mother's teach us are songs written on out hearts. I will sing them all my live long day! What beautiful memories of a strong, loving, Godly woman.
Big hugs,