Tuesday, November 10, 2009


Growing up Mennonite, pacifist, rural, and with precious little media; I was pretty much in the dumb when it came to understanding Armistice Day.
I knew that it had nothing to do with church.
But I also knew that it was special enough to warrant school closure.
There was no mail delivery.
We never owned a television, so programs about the Great War, Veterans Day, or the meaning of the poppy never got channelled into our rec room.

(Poppies. I bet my mother saved the same poppy from 1946 to present day to save herself a couple of cents. I suppose the notion of support through poppy sales was sort of lost on her.)
I liked poppies. My mother grew them in the garden every summer. There is a rumour that my brothers sowed "special poppies" in amongst them, but I'm sure I'll never know the truth of that one.

In our house, people didn't really ask questions. It wasn't a hostile environment; just a quiet and independent one- a sort of "survival of the fittest" sort of construct. So, year by year, I got November 11 off of school, wore my second hand poppy, and wondered what it was all about.
I'm 42 now, and own several televisions.
I wonder how those remaining veterans feel when they see all those soldiers carting off to Afghanistan. Where does "never again" fit into that?

Money. Power. Poverty. Suffering.

I go to a church now that recognizes Armistice Day. Pacifist or not, it's not fair to pretend that nobody fights in wars.
It is discouraging, though. People have been fighting since forever. They break down each others block towers and stomp on them. Then they get to be heroes by building all the towers back up.
We fight about everything.
Resources, authority, rules, freedomes, religion............
Now, you likely came here about a bag.
7.5" wide; 7.5" deep.
Rust coloured fabric all the way from Kuwait- I think they were my sister's curtains when she lived there?
Georgeous pile fabric with the floral print. This piece is truly regal. Rich. I'm thinking it may have come from sweet Mrs R. If I'm wrong, then it's Kim Z.
The strap is as lovely as the bag. One side has a very rich, dressy looking floral fabric. The other side is... wait for it.... a recycled hammock! (thank you, Pamela D)
Pockets: two interior. Front pocket is divided to house a pen in a narrow pocket. the other side is about right for your phone or keys.
I don't really know who will be at their computer today, what with remembrance day and all. So, this auction will conclude tomorrow, November 12, 2009 at 9:30 pm, cst.
$25 starts it off.


Karen said...

I love your post today Joyce.

Oh, and the bag's good too. :)



tanya said...


Anonymous said...

I say $50.
Schwester Mary

gophercheeks said...

Happy Birthday Joyce, you are good and I wish you lots of love today.

This bag is amazing!!!

Lynn said...

Your post is awesome. Thanks. Happy birthday too!!!!!


Roo said...

i like your thoughts...(reminds me of a song i have been listening to on repeat for the last 2 weeks)....and WOW...your mom saved the same poppy every year? for real? my poppies usually fall off my jacket within 24 hours of purchasing one.

happy birthday!

janice said...

Aha - thought you were a Mennonite - named Joyce, from Manitoba, great seamstress. (me too - Mennonite, not named Joyce or from Manitoba) Well, here is to Mennonites. All my male relatives were COs - and you know that does not stand for commanding officers.

I will bid $60, but if it is open all day tomorrow, that may not be good enough. I LOVE the bag.

I have my mom's old sewing machine - all my sisters already had their own when she gave it up 3 years ago. She is now in heaven, sew it is even more precious. The cabinet is the same one, with the varnish all softened by years of my mother's arm resting there.

I am getting all teary, because it is less than a year since she left us. I was sewing today - just mending is about all I do, and I found lots of buttons in one of the drawers - I want to send them to you.

Mom was a good Mennonite woman - amazing cook, and could sew anything and was creative like you. I have lots of quilts with vintage fabric, but did not know that until I started reading your blog. She was also a good woman. I knew a few good Mennonites who were not good wo(men).

Sorry for writing a tome.

Thank you for giving me another way to appreciate mom.

janice said...

Happy birthday.

Anonymous said...

I am 'flap'erghasted...
this bag is a beauty!
drools and birthdya wishes.

joyce said...

thank you all, so very much. I am touched and happy for the bids on this day of remembering.

I'm sure my mother didn't actually keep the same poppy for 50 years... but then again.... Have you ever met my mother?!

Janice- I'm not at all sorry for your long comment. Made me sort of teary, (just watched the movie "Up" which is a wonderful, wonderful little diddy that makes you think about life, and aging, and then of course- one's parents)

I wonder what sort of machine you were gifted? And how you must miss your mother. and you said "all my sisters" which made me wonder- how many? (I only have four....) Sisters that is. I had three brothers as well!

My mother is quite a little spirited thing. I must write a post on her soon.

xo xo, thanks in part to all of you lovely people, I've had a wonderful birthday indeed.

Anonymous said...

I must have this one. $65.00 Schwester Mary

Anonymous said...

I bought the rust-colored silk in India, and made myself a sleeping bag liner with it. The nicest hostel sheet around.....

sister Carlotti

Mary KG said...

I guess this means I got myself a nice little bag. I'll pick it up at the USP. schwester Mary