Thursday, May 6, 2010

Hazel Jean Hayward Wessman: A Biography, Part 3

Ten of the Wessman children.

Family was the first priority with Jean. She however was not a disciplinarian. She usually would start crying. It could be heard, "Don't make mom cry." Henry did more of the disciplining. The children were not allowed to sass or talk back to their mother without their father's wrath coming down on them.

She would get bent out of shape when the kids didn't do the household job that they were given. She felt that they had a job to do and they had better do it.

Family entertainment was mostly music, playing cards (Rummy, Hearts etc.), riding in the car and picnics. They would also go to resorts such as Saratoga and Warm Springs in Salt Lake to go swimming.

Life was never boring in the home with so many children. When the family lived on Adams Avenue in Ogden, they lived in a two-story house with a big attic. To get into the attic, one had to go through the trap door that leads there. Ernie was about six years old and Liz was going to help him up. She got there first and started to pull him up by holding his hands. Ernie was part way up when someone called her name. She said "What?" and at the same time let go of Ernie's hands. He fell all the way down. The next thing that he knew he was wobbling down the stairs. Jean asked, "What in the world happened to you?" Ernie replied, "Betty just dropped me out of the attic." He then keeled over and needed to be revived by his mother. The wind must have been knocked out of him.

Another time, some of her children with their friends snuck in to an irrigation pond that was called either Ellison or Beuss Pond. Liz almost drowned but someone saved her. She was scared to death and wouldn't go back in. A friend named Owen threw her back in so she would not have a fear of the water.

The whole bunch of kids made a deal that they would not tell anyone what happened. Especially to their parents. They were afraid of the repercussions if the situation was made known. Jean (the daughter) does not know who squealed but someone did. Henry and Jean found out about the incident by reading about it in the newspaper. What an interesting way to find out what happened!!!

One night, Norinne was sleep walking and walked out the second story window of their home. Jean heard her daughter crying but did not know what had happened. She had someone go check on her. Jean then realized that the crying came from outside. Norinne does not remember going out the window. She does remember being in her parent's bed and her mother was showing her the mud that was covering her nightgown. She had gotten muddy when she ran outside to get her daughter. Norinne was not hurt. Henry soon came home from work also to make sure that she was all right. Someone had told him about the incident.

Jean was scrubbing the kitchen floor in her bare feet. Keith was in the bathroom (just off of the kitchen) taking a bath. He was about seven or eight years old. She said that she just got done and needed to wash her feet so she could get her socks and shoes on. She came and sat on the edge of the tub and put her feet in the water. She slipped right into the water. It ended up that she popped Keith up in the air and he ended sitting on top of her. It was a big surprise but they laughed about it for many, many years.

Keith's first memories of his parents are of taking two cars loads full of family and friends and going up to the canyons to camp, eat, swim and play ball. On Saturdays, Jean made bread. She would also cook beans all day. After coming home from the canyons, the family would sit and eat biscuits and beans. Keith learned to love biscuits and beans from this experience. Dick loved to watch Jean cook.

To be continued...

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