“Time DOES FLY, when you are Cooking”

“Changing  now to the Eight Grade Cooking Class”

“We all do look terrific… if, I do say so… my myself!”

This  would have been fun… for us… but as  we  met  for a few times, always hoping that  we would  learn something before we Graduated… which would have been what we really needed… the Instructor just never showed up.

This Kitchen set-up was on the basement floor of the new Gym… as there were several rooms set up for different activities… but this was all new for us… and this was our last year at St. Vincent’s.




“WOW” … “This is it”

This is our “Cooking Class” PHOTO,  and I do not know that we ever…  really had what you would call a real “COOKING” lesson.

We never ever made any dish of something  or even a meal to know how to do such… for when we would  leave here,  and then  be at home with our parents.

Each child had a place to work for six months, and depending on how long you were at St. Vincent’s …working in the Kitchen and or Bakery … was rare,  as you did need to be able to work… lots of cleaning of pots and pans… required your ability to handle  the work load.

Before  leaving  St. Vincent’s…  some of us  did work in the KITCHEN and or the BAKERY  for a period of the six months and,  because we enjoyed  working with that Nun… would  spend more of  our free time… working as needed,  only because we liked those Nuns, that were in charge.

And…  there you did get a real hands on  of what to do…  but the recipes used  were not discussed … as they  were  for such a large  quantity of children, Nuns and outside workers, but and for sure… all I can tell you…  is that working in the BAKERY was FUN work for me.

Sister Augustella was a top notch NUN…  FUN …  and always gave us nice treats to eat with a cup of coffee.

“The Best Part of Today…June 8th, 1952”

On… JUNE 8th, 1952… this PHOTO of me was taken and as soon as my MOTHER would be ready to call a cab…  to collect all of my earthly possessions…  we would be leaving here for good!

In the back ground is standing a classmate, Gail Porter…  and lately she said this is not her…  that it is Elma Rutherford another  classmate…  one of the girls that would be  soon leaving to join the Sisters of Christian Charity  order of NUNS in Wilmette, Illinois.

But… I have never seen Elma stand so nice,  nor ever dressed, as in this PHOTO…  never used jewelry and this dress is one that none of the girls had available as far as I can remember.

“So If someone with better eyes can see something that I do not see…  let me know?”

In the above “Kitchen” photo… “Elma and Gail”  are standing close together on the left… 

 Maybe…  some  one can see a better match and or  even correct me…  wearing glasses today…  my eyes are not what they used to be!

To all the classmates and friends that are still living…

“May the Almighty Yahweh bless all of us… with many  more Blessings and LOVE…  than ever before!”         D.V.

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“Never Ever Can We Forget Good Memories”


“75..76..77… for the last… time”

“Just to think – – way back and  then….   everything  –  that  has happened – – and is still happening  – – and we are always and for ever … will only be a ‘YEAR’ – – apart???”  D.V.


                DENNY……..  MARY ELLEN…………..TOMMY

                   “The McClarrens… on Visiting Sunday…”


Over Seventy Years  ago… can you believe this is what the three of us looked like!!!

That is DENNY…MARY ELLEN…TOMMY – – and we are HAPPY… only… because it is  a … Visiting Sunday!

When I look at this photo…I am now taking note that,  there are so very  few  parents  in the back ground…  so few of the children were as LUCKY … as  the “McClarrens.” 

If only, to be able to see and visit with someone from their very own  FAMILY… to receive some sign, that there is someone in this whole wide world… that will  even, if ever, bother to come out on the second or fourth Sunday of each month… and  just spend a couple of hours…sharing  and showing  some “FAMILY LOVE” with the ones you LOVE the most,  your  very own small children!

What I really LOVED… was those surprise  “VISITs” – – that would happen at any ole time… any day of the week … when either my FATHER and or my MOTHER would just show-up, and always with a bag  or two,  just full of  goodies… to be shared while they were visiting with us, and all of  our friends we had!

Today…just reliving and thinking back … as to what was good and enjoyable about being in an Orphanage… especially when at that  time… I remember that,  I could hardly stand to be there … and could hardly wait for that day, when, I would graduate … and be able to leave … and forever be with my Mother, in my own HOME!!!


And here we are at the front door of the Orphanage…

Our little Tommy has always been… the  “STAR”… when it comes to taking PHOTOS… he likes to create just a smidge of excitement!

As I am looking at Tommy… it just came to me… he must like high up places… as he did become a  Paratrooper!



What does a paratrooper do?
Image result for Paratrooper

Paratroopers jump out of airplanes and use parachutes to land safely on the ground.
This is one of the three types of “forced entry” strategic techniques for entering a theater of war; the other two being by land and by water.
Is paratrooper an infantry?
Foot soldiers serving an airborne force are known as airborne infantry or paratroopers.
The main advantage of airborne forces is their ability to be deployed into combat zones without land passage, as long as the airspace is accessible.

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“Recipe of the Day: Tapioca Pudding”


Tapioca Pudding
Prep:  30 minutes
Cook:  30 minutes
Total Prep:  60 minutes
Serves 4


1/2 cup small pearl tapioca
3/4 cup water
2 – 1/4 cups 2% milk
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup sugar divided
2 eggs separated
1/2 teaspoon vanilla


Soak the tapioca in water for 30 minutes in a 1-1/2 quart saucepan.

Do not drain any remaining liquid from the tapioca.

Lightly beat egg yolks and add to tapioca along with milk, salt and 1/4 cup of sugar.

Simmer over low heat for 10-15 minutes and stir frequently.

Beat together egg whites and remaining sugar until soft peaks form.

Fold in a portion of the hot tapioca into the egg whites, then carefully fold the mixture back into the saucepan.

Continue to stir over low heat for approximately 3 minutes.

Allow the tapioca to cool for 15 minutes, then add the vanilla.

Serve the tapioca warm or chilled.

As an added treat, top with fruit, nuts, whipped cream, cinnamon or other seasonal favorites.

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“Never TOO YOUNG to Start with Music”

Back in the 1940’s… when I had ask to take Piano Lessons…Sister Florence  started telling my Mother… “to take music lessons is just too costly for you, a lesson is $2.00 a week and the cost of Music Books, we feel is just too much.”

At that time my Mother was working, and told Sister Florence… that she was able to pay what ever the cost would be… that she wanted me to take lessons.

So, when I was in High School… we found a “Music Teacher” near by… and I started taking lessons. The problem of waiting so long… there were too many other  things to do… and those brain cells with the desire to learn Music… got up and went south.

I was learning lessons week after week, but there were too many other  activities to keep up with also, and I just stopped taking the lessons, but I still have have all of my books, and could still play that which I did learn.

Then when I got married and had children of my own…I knew just what to do!

If you want your children to play music. you have to start them  out as early as possible with their having lessons and practicing  each and every day on a regular schedule.

Also… YOU must be listening and interested in what they are doing, so that they will know that these lessons are so important to you and they will participate fully… as we all know that those that learn MUSIC early in LIFE… develop more brain cells to learn their other lessons in School and all through their LIFE!

So, when I heard about this place in Fort Lauderdale, Florida… that taught young children to DANCE and other creative activities… such as be in their  Show on stage for the Parents and others to see them on Stage,  well little Lee was enrolled!

Lee Jr. with Music and Dance Class!

Lee with Music class 001Lee Aldrich Jr. is fourth from left of boys in the first row . Seems like they are having so much fun  listening to the photographer, telling them how to pose!

Lee & Girls 001

Little Lee was the only BOY… enrolled in this  very young DANCE Class… and when we were sitting in the audience… while they were performing their dance…I heard someone say to some others… that girl must not have worn the correct pants or was too cold … to wear what the others were wearing…

“If they would have read the program… she would have noticed…  that his name was not a girl’s name… as this same group were also in another dance… and he wore long pants in that dance, too!”


Music Lessons say “I Love You!”

Lee at keyboard 001Lee Aldrich  Jr. at the keyboard.

Music lessons for my sons… Lee and his brother Al… was the best investment in the amount of love for music they have personally received!

Music Lessons started very early and continued throughout all their School years… as they started out with piano and organ and then continued with the marching band instruments at School  and the Guitar … as that is what you can carry with you to all events”

“In my book…Music is the way to go… for  a better LIFE… for all children”

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“Sometimes some DAYS are NEVER HAPPY DAYS”

Sometimes  when you decide to take a second look at old PHOTOS…  those that were taken of you and your brothers, when you were very young children… and all the changes to your LIFE at HOME with your parents… and then so abruptly find that you are all placed into an Orphanage… for HOW LONG?

This next PHOTO is taken after our new addition to the family has finally arrived, our new baby sister, Eve Karen. This is a visiting SUNDAY… which would be only once a month… and the time of the visit would be  from one in the afternoon and until five in the afternoon. 

Very few parents would get there at exactly “one in the afternoon” as back in those days the BUS service was very slow on Sundays.

In fact, most Business’ were close on Sundays… most people had a Church to attend and would enjoy Sunday at HOME with their family

“Things sure have changed since then!”

Baby Karen 001

This sure was a change for us.

I would continually ask…”When are we going back HOME with you?”

The answer that I received was, “We are trying to work things out, and it will be  soon!”

A Sunday Visit 001

Well … we are still here and still waiting to go HOME!

We are getting bigger and learning the ways of being an ORPHAN… as this place has rules and regulations that just do not seem to be okay with my MOTHER.

On one Visiting Sunday… she asked me what do you do?

At that time, I was only eight years old… and worked for Sister Editha on the ground floor where the  “Girl’s  Wash Rooms ” are… and my job once a week was to wash and clean the toilets. Of course my Mother wanted to know how I cleaned the toilets?

So I told her… I had bucket of water and rag and a bar of brown soap… and soaped up the rag and washed the inside of each toilet. They had to be clean or I would have to do them again!

When my Mother heard this… the first thing she did was to type a letter to City of St, Louis… and of course they received that letter MONDAY … as there would be several  mail pick-ups back in those days.

When they received that letter … they called the Orphanage to find out about this situation… and it must have been a mess that needed to be taken care…Right NOW!

The next morning as we are all preparing for the six o’clock Mass…we are all in line in the Hall… and the NUN in Charge call my name out… so I stepped out of line… she asked me about what I had told my MOTHER… then started slapping me in the face… half a dozen times,  said, loud and clear for all to hear, “What goes on here in the Orphanage … stays in the Orphanage and you are not to tell your Mother and or anyone else!

I was crying, and that is all that I could do…

Life was not worth living…  when you can not tell anybody anything…

From then on… the NUNS watched me like a hawk… and on the next Visiting Sundays… a NUN would stand right by where I was sitting with my MOTHER… to hear everything and anything that I said.

“I knew that I was no longer allowed to say anything about what was done in the Orphanage… for fear of more trouble!”

1-more 001

My brothers may have been Happy… but, I always knew that I was being watched and never really ever felt too Happy to be an Orphan!

Come to think of it… back then… there were lots of kids that never ever received a VISIT from anybody…that has to be the  hardest thing in LIFE for a child to live with…  never ever a HAPPY Day in their LIFE!

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Each year on October 5, people across the nation observe National Do Something Nice Day.

This observance is very similar to National Random Acts of Kindness Day, which is celebrated on February 17.

It would be ideal if everyone lived their lives doing kind things on a daily basis and without thinking about it. We all get caught up in our fast-paced lifestyles. However, kindness should never be sacrificed to get ahead in the world. Kindness doesn’t require grand gestures. Though, when able, those are acceptable, too. 

Real generosity is doing something nice for someone who will never find out. ~Frank A. Clark

In a matter of seconds, we hold the power to change the course of a person’s day by being nice. The person’s day in question might even be our own. Some things that takes very little time at all and almost no effort include:

  • Noticing someone’s signal in traffic and allowing them into your lane
  • Picking up the neighbor’s newspaper on your daily walk and placing it within easy reach
  • Opening a door for another person
  • Giving your place in line to the person with only three items
  • Tipping your service staff an extra dollar or two more than you usually would
  • Give a compliment
  • Encourage a student with an idea for a solution
  • Read to a child
  • Listen to someone who is lonely
HOW TO OBSERVE #DoSomethingNiceDay

Do something nice. The something can be anything from buying a cup of coffee for someone in line at the coffee shop to giving a compliment to the tired clerk. Maybe the day calls for sending flowers with a card that says “just because,” or asking the neighbors over for a barbecue in the backyard or mowing the lawn for someone.   Use #DoSomethingNiceDay to post on social media.

We do encourage our readers to learn about the inspirational story of Eva Kor here: The Story of Eva.


National Day Calendar® continues researching the origins of this helpful holiday.

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