There are things I remember from my early childhood that have stayed with me all my life. One of these memories comes from an early Sunday Christmas morning in my hometown of Sedalia, Missouri in 1949. My Grandmother Klein lived alone in a huge upstairs five room apartment at 614 1/2 South Ohio. It had been snowing for sometime, but so lightly that the snow felt like goose down. I was three years old, and all wrapped up in my Christmas outfit and hat. Mother and Father were all bundled up as we drove down 16th Street to Ohio to go see Grandma before church. My position was standing on the broad back seat, holding onto the door strap. In the magical dimness of the early morning snow, everything looked like it had been coated with snow icing. I had never seen anything like it. As we drove toward downtown, I got more excited about getting into the snow. We arrived at the apartment and visited for a while. I spent the time looking out the front windows seeing a real winter wonder land. As we left, I asked Dad if we could walk in the snow. What was so striking to me was the weather was almost warm, with no wind. The snow was so softly falling in the early light that if felt like fairy dust dancing on my face. We walked to the center of snow covered Ohio Street, where not one car had traveled down. Dad and I walked straight down the middle of the street looking at all the snow draped street lights and Christmas decorations for several blacks, gliding through the perfect snow. Although the snow came to my knees, I felt like a princess in a magical kingdom. As we were ending our walk, the bells of Sacred Heart Church rang out their Christmas herald. We stopped to listen frozen in time and returned to meet Mother. This was truly a wonderful Christmas to remember.

Winters Milk
This painting was done the winter before my daughter, Nicole’s birth, in honor of that Christmas morning of long ago.

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