I Wuz Just Thinking: Gifts from Grandmother

Robert spent the day with grandmother and helped her rearrange her bedroom. He found the bags of toys I had so carefully hidden.

Many stores hired part-time help during the Holidays, usually from October until Christmas Eve.  One particular year I was hired as a sales clerk at OTASCO – Oklahoma Tire and Supply Company, located in the shopping plaza.

I loved greeting the customers, listening to the Christmas carols being played over the loudspeaker, and taking the time to read the information on the boxes of toys so I could better guide the customers to the age-appropriate items.

I was amazed how many of the toy boxes had beautiful pictures and were higher priced. So many of the packages were plain. But, to my surprise, I discovered the better quality of the toy was actually those that had plain wrappers and lower prices.

After weeks of brisk sales, the store advertised that it would be open the day after Christmas. Exchanges for many items would be marked off by as much as fifty percent.

Betty Mahurin Baker

That gave me the opportunity to save a hundred dollars.  Early morning, I was the first through the door, and I went straight to the Tonka and Buddy L toys, gathering as many as I could to put away for my little boys, Robert and John, for their next Christmas, a year away.

I drove across town, placed the toys in large plastic trash bags, and hid them under the bed in my mother’s bedroom.

That summer, little Robert spent the day with grandmother and helped her rearrange her bedroom. He found the bags of toys.

“Who are these toys for?” he asked.

“I’m saving those to give some little children next Christmas,” she said.

December 25th finally rolled around, and little Robert and John were so surprised when they woke up Christmas morning with so many presents beneath the well-lit tree.

As soon as Robert began opening his gifts, he came over to me and said, “Momma, wasn’t that so sweet of Grandmother to give us all these toys.  She knew we would not have any and gave us the toys she had under her bed.”

That was the first I realized he had helped her rearrange her bedroom and found the toys.

A short time later, I phoned mother and told her that this time she could take the credit for being such a swell grandmother who furnished all the toys for the boys’ Christmas.

She laughed for a long time, and I began to think she was never going to quit laughing so I could hang up the phone.

The boys had a fun Christmas with all their new toys. And grandmother had her chuckle too.

Wonderful times.

Wonderful memories.

As I wuz just thinking.

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