A Woman's Voice

BLUE MONDAY — March 15, 2010 by Dolores Ayotte

Posted in INSPIRATIONAL QUOTES AND ANECDOTES by doloresayotte on March 15, 2010
Tags: , ,


“The highest of distinction is of service to others.”  (King George VI)



BLUE MONDAY- My Mother’s Voice (Nettie Gauthier)

Today I am taking some of the same creative liberty that Jeannette Walls did in Half Broke Horses when she wrote her book speaking in the first person using her grandmother’s voice.  Although I won’t  be doing quite that, I am writing this blog on behalf of my mom. All my other guests will write their own.

I will take the opportunity to share a little about my mom with you. I feel so fortunate because my mother will be eighty-nine years old at the end of the month. This picture of her was taken in November, 2009.  I’m starting with my mom out of deference and respect.  Her voice was the first voice I ever heard.  The rest of the voices will be random. 

When I was young, after the weekend when my dad returned to work and my siblings and I went to school, my mom would say that it was “blue Monday”.  She felt we were getting back to our weekly routine and the grind of daily living.  As a young girl, I never realized what the daily grind was to her on these “blue Mondays” until I became an adult.

I come from a family of six children which was no big deal in my day.  We lived in a war time home which was about 800 square feet with no basement.  Every Monday, my mom would pull out the wringer washing machine and push it to the kitchen sink. She would then wash one tub full of clothes after the other all day long. One time she actually caught her arm in the wringer. She only washed clothes on Monday.  All winter long she would almost freeze her fingers off as she hung those clothes on the line outside.  No automatic dryers in those days!  When she brought them in the house at the end of the day they would be as stiff as boards but smell as fresh as daisies.  I remember loving the smell of those frozen clothes.

You know what strikes me the most as I look back?  I never once heard her complain.  I guess Mondays were very hard for her because she frequently referred to them as “blue Mondays”.  It was as if my mom had almost “no voice” at all as she went about her routine day after day, and week after week. She was too busy to have much to say.  Perhaps “blue Monday” said it all.  What do you think?  Do you feel the same way about Mondays?

On Monday, March 22, I will be featuring my first guest blogger, my daughter, Andrea Cockerill.  Please don’t miss the wonderful article she’s written for A Woman’s Voice.

If you are interested in being a guest blogger, please contact me at my e-mail address:


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15 Responses to 'BLUE MONDAY — March 15, 2010 by Dolores Ayotte'

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  1. Kathy DeRoo said,

    I agree with Aunt Nettie regarding blue Monday. I however call them melencoly Mondays. The few moments of peace we attain on the weekends are quickly forgotten when Monday rolls around and we are forced back into the strife and stress this society has brought upon us.

    • Kathy…great to hear from you. I’m so glad you visited my blog and I appreciate your comment! 🙂

  2. Jan said,

    I used a wringer washer when we were first married in the 70s. I caught my long hair in it once but quickly released the bar. Whew.

    Being retired now, Mondays are not what they used to be. I don’t remember thinking of them as “blue Mondays” though. With the kids at home there was more of a routine during the week but with modern conveniences, laundry was done on an “as needed” basis and never seen as a chore to me.

    I actually like Mondays – a fresh start to the new week – after Sunday, where I have been renewed at church and feeling the power of the Holy Spirit.

    • Jan…thanks so much for checking out my blog. I couldn’t have done it wiithout you! Thanks for your comments too. 🙂

  3. Jenny Burr said,

    I remember the wringer washing machine. We couldn’t afford an automatic washer so my mom used a wringer washer for a few years in the 1970’s. Water was not wasted in fact you started with your whites and worked to your colours and darks.

    • Wringer washers….you’re right, they sure did save on water. Did your mom soak the whites in that blue water too, before she hung them on the line? Thanks for your comment Jenny! 🙂

  4. kay wielinski said,

    What a nice memory of your Mother – we too always used the washer-wringer in our home. I too loved the smell of the fresh sheets and clothes from the line. My favorite was smelling the fresh clothes being ironed. Brings back beautiful memories.

    • Thank you so much Kay for reading my blog. It’s brought back fond memories for a lot of people. I can tell by the responses I’ve received. 🙂

  5. Lorraine Gauthier said,

    It is so nice to read everyone’s comments. Times have certainly changed when it comes to completing chores. Ironically we seem to have less down time today. We have to schedule in our moments of solitude.Those were the days when we actually got bored!! 🙂

    • Yes Lorraine…it is just wonderful to read how people can relate to the times of wringer washers. It brought back a variety of memories for us all! 🙂

  6. Glynis said,

    Thanks Delores for this walk down memory lane! When we were first married in 1978, we had a wringer washer. It was a bit of extra work but, my, it sure got the clothes clean. It was great except for the time I shrunk my new hubby’s favourite woollen sweater! But that is another story. Your Mom is beautiful, and so is your blog! I love the look! Great job.

  7. Peter Black said,

    I thoroughly enjoyed this piece. Very nostalgic, really — what with washer-wringers, frost-stiff clothes, and all. But especially, a faithful uncomplaining mom!
    Thank you.

  8. Laurette Godard said,

    I remember leaving home in 1962. I also used a wringer washer. I didn’t mind laundry. I caught my hair in the wringer and it scared the heck out of me. I used to use my landlady’s waher in her basement. One time the hose was plugged and the water wouldn’t drain. I called the landlady who stuck her fingers up the hose and pulled out a dead mouse. What a panic. I bought my own machine and we dragged it up to the 2nd floor. I had a very large bathroom and that is where I did my laundry from there on.

  9. Rita Borthwick said,

    My Mom used the wringer washer until 1995 when a stroke paralized her.She believed those automatic machines didn’t get your clothes as white. There was no way she would use the dryer, it discoloured the whites. When I got my first auto washer & dryer in 1976, she thought I was crazy.However, I continued to do laundry on Mondays (wash, iron & mend) and clean house top to bottom on Fridays, grass was cut on Thursday. “To be efficient, you had to have a plan and stick with it.” How it drove my husband crazy.Now I do laundrey when I have a “load”.
    I must admit, with the four children gone from home,no longer have a hired person and no large garden filled with vegetable & fruit to be canned, I wonder where my time goes.
    Deloris, I like what you have done. Please continue

    • Thanks so much Rita for visiting my blog site. It was so neat to hear about your mom and your experiences too. Thanks for your words of encouragement and support. I appreciate it! 🙂

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