Martha Colleen CLINTON is the next lady I would like to introduce you to. Colleen as she was often referred to was my maternal grandmother and she had a wonderful, fun filled, interesting and active life. She was born on 26 February 1922, in Matthews, New Madrid, Missouri; her parents were Edd CLINTON and Essie Mae STEWART. She had two sisters, Nellie Elizabeth CLINTON and Edra Mae CLINTON. There were four brothers in that house Kenneth Clair CLINTON, Ora Hilton CLINTON, Frank Stewart Clinton and Clarence Eldon CLINTON. She grew up on the farm and lived a simple life like most families did then.
She married Fred Henry ELFRANK on 3 August 1940 while living in Missouri. They had two great kids, the oldest being Fred Leroy ELFRANK and the youngest Deborah Sue ELFRANK. The lived in Cape Girardeau, Missouri throughout the greater part of their marriage and raised both children while there. As you’ve noticed I’m speaking in past tense, we lost my grandmother on the 3 August 1995.
Grandma was known as a very strong minded lady that had a point to prove and wouldn’t stop till you either truly agreed or just agreed so you could move on. She had a knack with crafts and decorating that was passed on to my mom and me. I forget to mention the strong minded characteristics were also passed on to me. Thank you grandma!
I know in the past post that I’ve done on Mater Women I’ve always gone to my mom or my dad for their input. I’m changing this up some only because I’m not sure if they are aware of how much of an impact she made with me. When I started this post I couldn’t help but cry, I miss so much of my grandma. I wish so much she was here with us to see what a wonderful family I have and to get that stinging love pat we, the grand kids always got when she was happy. It doesn’t matter if we were sitting around playing card games or out back hitting the wiffle ball. Whenever she would give us a hug we would always get a strong loving pat on our legs or on our backs.
Playing cards was always something we did with grandma. We would sit around this little breakfast bar style table and start dealing the deck, for games like spite and malice or even slap jack. My brothers and I had small hands and couldn’t hold the cards so grandma let us lay them out on chairs next to us. The came couldn’t start of course until we, the kids, had our soda and pretzels, while grandma would have her cigarettes, and a “Pabst Blue Ribbon,” her beer of choice. We would stay up for hour’s playing cards and no matter what we would never admit we were tired.
I mentioned that my grandmother was very crafty and she taught me a few things. Needle point is one of the many crafts, I have two pillow cases one with kitty cats playing with a ball of yarn and another one with a princess. Funny thing is I don’t really remember making these with my grandma but I still have them and keep them close. I do however remember us making a trashcan together, strange I know but that was the coolest trashcan. She and grandpa grabbed a couple of those large, cylinder ice cream tubs from “Basket Robbins”, along with some Sears and JcPenny catalogs. We sat in her black and gold craft room and we would rip each page out of those catalogs. Then place a toothpick in one corner and roll to the other, attach a small piece of tape then lay in a pile. I don’t remember how many of those we rolled but we rolled a ton, we carried our rolls and ice cream containers to the kitchen table then began gluing each one on the outside all the way around the container. Then voila we had our new crafty trash cans ready to take home.
It was always a treat watching grandma play wiffle ball with my brothers and I. Let’s just say, you had better use the restroom before you begin to play or you’re likely to have an accident from laughing so hard. She would grab that bat, step up to the plate, stick her butt out, do a full 360 spin with that bat, chant her batter- batter-swing; while all of this was going on she would shake her butt. You just had to see her; she was so serious about making us laugh.
No matter how old you were or what you’ve done you could always count on grandma to love you. She might not agree with some of the choices you have made but you were always right there in her thoughts and heart.