All our Sundays were exactly alike. They began on Saturday night after Bong the Chinaboy had washed up and gone away, after our toys, dolls and books, all but "The Peep of Day" and Bunyan's "Pilgrim's Progress", had been stored away in drawers and boxes till Monday, and every Bible and prayer-book in the house was puffing itself out, looking more important every minute.
Then the clothes-horse came galloping into the kitchen and straddled round the stove inviting our clean clothes to mount and be aired. The enormous wooden tub that looked half coffin and half baby-bath was set in the middle of the kitchen floor with a rag mat for dripping on laid close beside it. The great iron soup pot, the copper wash-boiler and several kettles covered the top of the stove, and big sister Dede filled them by working the kitchen pump-handle furiously. It was a sad old pump and always groaned several times before it poured. Dede got the brown Windsor soap, heated the towels and put on a thick white apron with a bib. Mother unbuttoned us and by that time the pots and kettles were steaming.
Dede scrubbed hard. If you wriggled, the flat of the long-handled tin dipper came down spankety on your skin.
As soon as each child was bathed Dede took it pick-a-back and rushed it upstairs through the cold house. We were allowed to say our prayers kneeling in bed on Saturday night, steamy, brown-windsory prayers--then we cuddled down and tumbled very comfortably into Sunday.
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About the Author
Emily Carr was born in Victoria, British Columbia, in 1871, and died there in 1945. She studied art in San Francisco, London and Paris. Except for a period of fifteen years when she was discouraged by the reception to her work, she was a commited painter. After 1927, when she was encouraged by the praise of the Group of Seven, interest in her paintings grew and she gained recognition as one of Canada’s most gifted artists. Now, nearly sixty years after her death, her reputation continues to grow.
There is an excellent website devoted to Emily Carr, her lift, her art and her writing, at http://www.tbc.gov.bc.ca/culture/schoolnet/carr/
Sarah Ellis is an award-winning writer and children's librarian, as well as being a sought-after speaker at conferences and workshops throughout North America and Europe. She has taught children's literature at colleges and universities in Canada, the United States, Europe and Japan, and she has been a core lecturer and seminar leader at the Children's Literature New England conferences since 1993. Between 1984 and 1998 she was the regular columnist on Canadian children's books for Horn Book Magazine. She is also the humour editor for the electronic children's literature journal, The Looking Glass.
Ellis is the author of 13 books for young people, including the Governor General's Award-winning Pick-Up Sticks, Out of the Blue (winner of the IODE Violet Downey Book Award and the Mr. Christie's Book Award) and The Baby Project (published as The Family Project in the U.S. by Simon & Schuster and Dell). In 1995, she won the Vicky Metcalf Award for a Body of Work, and in 1999 she was the first children's author to be named Writer-in-Residence at Massey College at the University of Toronto.