The Ladies Aid Society and I think also the Mizpah class held an annual garage sale with homemade vegetable soup served in the Fellowship Hall with the larger kitchen in the fall. Later the mission committee added apple dumplings. A browser spent time in the basement under the sanctuary where tables of clothes and other used goods were placed. This area was built into the hill, so the west side had floor to ceiling windows letting in natural light. It was still kind of a rough area being it was just built in 1969. All the improvements hadn't been started yet.
This sunny fall day when I was in sixth grade, I rustled through the children's clothes for my "Diane" doll. One year, before I was born, my sisters got Madame Alexander dolls, probably their last dolls. Diane doll, the taller of the two, with dark blond hair and black eyes, belonged to Diane. "Gerri Lee" doll, smaller with reddish hair and green eyes, both seemed to look like their owners. I guess, like most youngest children, I inherited them until my nieces came along. I suppose that is why I was only looking for Diane clothes.
What does an eleven year old want for her toddler size doll in 1972? I pawed over jeans, tennis shoes and a sweat shirt. A big difference from the frilly dresses Diane doll wore most of her life.
Thoughts of dressing my doll, changing her style, occupied my mind, when elderly Mrs. Elliot sauntered up beside me and pointed out the little girdles, "Look at these. 'bout time you get some of these." All 80 pounds and five foot two inches glared at this intrusive woman. Yet, I smiled and inched away with my doll clothes to buy. Mom wore a girdle, I hoped to never have to wear one! I barely wanted to wear a bra, but the necessity of that had come too early.
My brain, emotions and habits did not meet my body's growth. Though, that fall, I was less than a year away from my first adult kiss. Life changes that year would take me from a little girl looking for doll clothes to learning about sex, hiding wearing make up at school only- advantage of being a walker, smoking my first cigarette. That fall day as I disdained growing up, these events were eons away. I couldn't wait for some of that wonderful beef vegetable soup, homemade bread and pie, as I scurried up the stairs to the Fellowship Hall.