Aunt Mary and Aunt Agnes visited the farm quite often. Mom was always glad to see them because they brought the latest gossip and always knew what was going on in the area.
Aunt Mary owned and operated a beauty shop in town. She had very modern equipment in her shop. I thought it was very pretty. All the sinks and cabinet tops were black and the trim on everything was chrome. Even the legs of the chairs were chrome. I worked at the shop on Saturdays during the school year and one of my jobs was to clean all the sinks etc. Cleaning the black sinks was quite a challenge. We used kerosene to get the water spots out of the sinks. At that time it was the only thing aunt Mary could find that worked.
This was the late twenties and they began to tell mom that the latest style for women in the cities were pants,. Long pants like the men wore. They discussed the pros and cons of this idea and decided they would make a pair as a test. They might not wear them out in public but around the house might be kinda fun. The pants were made with big flared legs so they looked like long skirts If you didnít know youíd think they were wearing a skirt.
The following week Mary and Agnes went to the local Pennys store and bought some pretty printed fabric and a pattern. With Mom at the sewing machine they worked together to make a pair of pants for Agnes and a pair for Mary. Mom was still unsure about this revolutionary idea so she didnít sew pants for herself. As I was growing up I donĎt remember mom ever wearing a pair of the new fangled pants .
Another topic of conversation among the sisters was about the priest in the Saint Benedict parish. The town of St. Benedict was three miles north of our farm. Aunt Mary and Aunt Agnes sometimes went to mass over there if they were running late for a mass in Seneca. They told mom that the priest in that parish would not give communion to women if they were wearing lipstick. They thought he was doing the wrong thing and wondered if he had permission from the bishop to do such a thing. As far as I know the priest never gave up on the idea so a lot of families from St. Benedict came to church in Seneca.
We spent a lot of time in church. My mom made sure we were there for mass on Sunday, mass before school every morning and for all the extra ceremonies at Easter, Christmas etc. We recited the rosary every evening after supper during lent. Dad led with the first verse and the rest of us said the last verse. I thought this was pure torture and seemed to last forever.
Mom tried constantly to talk one of her girls into becoming a nun or one of the boys to become a priest. I sometimes thought that mom believed if one of her kids became a priest or a nun that god would have a special spot in heaven for her.