THE FAMILY ALBUM: Permanent birthdays

My maternal grandmother, Donna Clary Barmes, grew up in northern Boone Township of Madison County, Indiana, an area her ancestors helped to settle a century before her birth in 1924.

Grandma Donna had a favorite aunt, Vivian Jones, a beautician, who was married to her mother’s brother, Harry Jones. Aunt Vivian and Grandma Donna were much alike in humor and shared a number of other commonalities.

Every May, for Grandma’s birthday, Aunt Vivian would give Grandma a permanent for her birthday.

Grandma Donna was barely above five feet tall and the heavy rods used for the permanent were much too heavy for my wee bit of a grandmother.

Uncle Harry would kneel in front of Grandma and hold her head up throughout the process.

When I saw this photograph, I immediately thought of Aunt Vivian giving Grandma Donna her birthday permanent with Uncle Harry on his knees, holding on to Grandma’s head to keep her from toppling over.

Note: I was fortunate to know and love My great-great uncle, Harry and Jones and Aunt Vivian Silvey Jones. They each lived until the mid to late 1980s. I could have easily see why my grandmother adored Aunt Vivian and Uncle Harry.

About Wright Flyer Guy

Darin is a single adoptive father, a teacher, playwright, and musical theatre director from Kettering, Ohio.
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