Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Big Families

My Mother-in-law talks often of growing up in a large family. They lived on Blanket Bottom, an area of Arkansas that is now under Bull Shoals Lake. Life was especially hard for them during the 1920's and 30's, little work and a big family are a bad mix. But Mom rarely talks about that aspect, her memories are all good ones. Running barefoot down the dirt roads that lead to their house, gatherings at the Grandparents' when the meals were spread on long tables...she smiles as she remembers her childhood in Marion County.

Her Grandmother Jefferson used to make apple pies and stack them, one on top of the other so that there was plenty. Cooking for a large family meant peeling lots of potatoes for dinner, always thinking ahead and putting on a pot of beans first thing in the morning. I can't imagine cooking for that many every day but her Mother took it in stride and no one ever went hungry!

Grandma Rorie with 5 of her Grandchildren

Being part of a big family came with chores...the Rorie kids in the garden 1940's

It also came with perks!
Like having enough cousins to make a baseball team or a great round of
"Mother May I?"


  1. I enjoyed reading your post. There is something to be said for big families for sure.

  2. Hello Joycee, I envy people who have large families. I grew up an only child but discovered in my 30's I had a sister...oh how I wish we could have grown up together. Your family is very lucky. Take care...Maura

  3. I found my way here by way of MizMollye. I read a comment you left on her blog and just had to pop over. So glad I did! Your blog is wonderful.

    From one Granny to another - glad to meet you and I'll be back to visit soon.

  4. I always envied my cousin cause he had 10 brothers and sisters - they were 11 in all. There was always so much going on at their house and my aunt was always cool about it. no ruffled feathers at all. i vowed i would have a big family too - i stopped at 3.

  5. If things would have gone a different way, we would have had more children, or adopted children, but we were not fortunate in that way.
    Still, the words you tell about family being together and always someone to play with bring many memories of my extended family. We even vacationed together! (camping)

  6. I pray my kids have good memories of growing up in a large family. Leon and I both grew up in a small family (one sibling each) so this has def. been a learning experience. I couldn't imagine it any other way. (well...once in a while ; ) )


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