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Sunday, July 7, 2013

Sunday Memories: Mass and Doughnuts

My dad and mom were serious Catholics. Mom often went to daily Mass and I don't remember my parents EVER skipping Sunday Mass even once when I was growing up except for childbirth or serious illness. Every Sunday we were out of the house and in the car to arrive for Mass a little early where we filled an entire pew. Everyone dressed in Sunday best to meet mom and dad's approval: no blue jeans, shorts, message t-shirts, etc. The girls mostly wore dresses and skirts (and head coverings) and the boys were in dress pants. We attended the Tridentine Mass because that WAS the Catholic Mass until 1965 when I was in college and away from home except for summers.

After Mass Daddy took us all to the bakery, a Sunday tradition, where everyone clamored for our favorite goodies. The little ones liked to pull the ticket from the machine and we all waited eagerly to hear our number called. I'm sure the bakery owner LOVED seeing us coming! We exited in triumph with bags and boxes of powdered jelly and glazed doughnuts, elephant ears, assorted danish (cheese were my favorite), crullers and cinammon twists, and something chocolate. Each of us could have three choices for breakfast - talk about a sugar high! But we all loved it and looked forward to the Sunday bakery run. To this day, a powdered, raspberry filled doughnut triggers childhood nostalgia.

Sunday was always a quiet day. Daddy liked to put opera on the phonograph and I learned to love the Grand March from Aida, Maguerite's Jewel Song from Faust, and all the wonderful music from Carmen and Pagliacci. Daddy was a wonderful pianist, the son of a church organist. One of the first purchases my parents made in the early years of marriage was a refurbished grand piano. I used to sit on the bench and sing (in English) some of the opera songs(certainly not with an operatic voice!). I still have Daddy's opera book much taped together, and sometimes I sit and play (badly) some of the music I heard in my childhood sitting next to Daddy on the piano bench. What happy times they were. Thanks, Mom and Dad, for those lovely Sundays and those lovely childhood memories.

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