“John will always care for
you, Girl. Just like he wasn’t afraid to dive into that icy water to save
your life. He’s taken you as part of his own and it is our way to take
care of what is ours.” Mary spoke with kindness to her son’s wife.
“I know it, Mam.” Zona
exercised respect. On the other hand she did feel secure with this family.
She liked the way they treated their young people as though they were
truly thankful to have them near by while they spent many hours teaching
one or another craft or skill they possessed to them. Her own mother was a
strict disciplinarian in the Biblical sense of “not sparing the rod, nor
spillin’ the child.”
This was a nice change for
her. To be accepted and immediately liked by the elders of the family gave
her a good feeling about herself and she felt valued. It seemed every task
attempted was met with approval in some way or another.
“Gal, you’ve gone way out
of your way on that job.” Her father-in-law was genuinely pleased.
Especially her sewing was met with pride.
The Osage people who were
in a transitional way of dress were anxious to employ her to sew up
garments for them. They were suffering the move to this cramped area but
somehow managed to keep to their ceremonies. Fabric they needed sometimes
was hard won and scarce but those tribe’s members knew how to manage for
money to buy it out of Jake Bartles trader’s store.
The colors were rich,
vibrant and the weave was of a soft silk or velvet material. Scraps from
the beautiful shirts left over were given to Zona and she busily worked
them into a crazy quilt for the richest baby blanket any child could have.
There were, hand-embroidered, fancy stitches surrounding each cut and
color. Dark strong hues in either silk or velvet with the light thread of
the embroidery work was lovely enough anyone would have wished to own one
“John sewed the suit he
wore when you were married.” The mother was proud of her son’s efforts.
“He won’t have to do that
anymore,” Zona was serious.