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Life & Events > My Budget in L947

My Budget in L947

Sad to say, my mother and I did not get along and when I
graduated from highschool, at age l7, I proceeded to get
a job and move away from home. I went to work for South-
Western Bell and earned twenty six dollars for a 40 hour
week. It was a mind numbing job.

I rented a room from a sweet motherly woman and it was a
bed sit as the British would say. It was lovely and it
cost 2.50 a week. I had to eat out and it cost me about
twelve dollars a week or less. I was a little hungry a
great deal of the time because I splurged on clothes.
That is where the rest of my budget went. You could buy
a very nice skirt suit for 30. and a nice dress for 20.00.
I had a room mate and we got along very well. We worked
at the same place and lived only a block and a half from
work. We didn't even dream about having a car. We walked
every place we went.

I don't recall that I saved any money at all. I had no
checking or savings acct. I was engaged by the spring of
l948 and planned a simple wedding at the home of a local
Methodist Minister. My room mate's mother made me a
simple white crepe dress with a bustle back. Louise, my room mate was the maid of honor and later I was her matron of honor and my husband best man when she was married.

My grandaughters were amazed to know that you could get
a hot dog and a fruit drink for l5 cents and a hamburger, fritos and small coke for a quarter. I don't remember
the price of a movie but I think it was around a dime.

I stayed in contact with Mrs. Martin from whom I rented the room for years. I needed the love and mothering that
she gave me because I wasn't very grown up at l7. She
sent me all her best recipes and she was a fantastic cook. I still use them.

I was so lucky to have such a safe and sheltered environment to finish growing up in.

posted on Mar 4, 2017 8:55 AM ()


That's a beautiful story!
comment by jerms on Mar 6, 2017 8:54 PM ()
It was a long time ago and remembering it now, I think that at seventeen
I thought I had all the answers.
reply by elderjane on Mar 8, 2017 4:24 AM ()
My mother was born a few days after you, and she left home at age 16 to move to Denver. After she graduated from business school there, where she met my dad, she moved up to the next town to where he lived and had an apartment upstairs in Mr. and Mrs. Thompson's house. We visited them often when I was growing up and our favorite thing was to sleep over in that place our mom lived one time.
comment by troutbend on Mar 4, 2017 9:21 PM ()
Evidently we left the nest sooner in those days. My sister
married at sixteen and the marriage lasted nearly 60 years until he died.
reply by elderjane on Mar 5, 2017 6:22 AM ()
A subway token was 15 cents when I ways a kid in Queens and that amazes me. To think of what has happened in my lifetime and yours. At least we had TV as crappy as it was in the 50s. I remember applying for my first real job when I was 18 or so and just completed a heating and air conditioning tech program. "Don't take anything for less than $3 an hour". That was the semi-skilled wage at the time.
comment by jjoohhnn on Mar 4, 2017 10:05 AM ()
Don't bet, it's too easy to lose.
reply by jjoohhnn on Mar 5, 2017 11:17 AM ()
Betcha that skill with air conditioning and heating has paid off your whole life, especially when you owned a motel. Just think you made
24 dollars a day back then.
reply by elderjane on Mar 5, 2017 6:25 AM ()
It's nIce that she was there when you needed her. I couldn't have survived on my own at 17, I was way too immature!!!!
comment by kristilyn3 on Mar 4, 2017 9:49 AM ()
I loved Mrs. Martin dearly. She worried about me when she thought that
I was not eating enough. Although she never had children, she was a
good role model.
reply by elderjane on Mar 5, 2017 6:28 AM ()
That's a lovely story. I wonder if Mrs. Martin realized her role in providing you a safe haven. I loved my mom beyond reason, but had to live on my own and I was getting older and to that point where, if you don't leave, you never will, and will be sitting in the family living room at 40, wondering where you life went. So I got out. Family was very unhappy, but we managed it finally.
comment by tealstar on Mar 4, 2017 9:10 AM ()
I am glad you were able to leave with no hard feelings. My mother was
delighted to have me gone although my father was distressed. He said it
was the greatest sorrow of his life that my sister and I didn't get along with our mother. Mrs. Martin's loving concern was a great boon to me.
reply by elderjane on Mar 5, 2017 6:33 AM ()

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