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Wednesday, December 12

My Eye Exam and Christmas Memories


I would like to thank all of my blogging friends for praying that my eye examination this morning would go well. Praise God! It's the best I've had in a long time. My eye pressures were 14 and 17, which is VERY good. My vision is 20/20 with my bifocals on and the doctor informed me that the field test he did six months ago was excellent. I have not lost any periphial vision. This is great! I have a double risk of vision lost because I am a diabetic that suffers from glaucoma. I go back in April for another field test and then next September for a full eye examination like I had today.

Last night I watch the movie, Booky and the Secret Santa on CBC. It was a family movie that I really enjoyed. It takes place in Toronto during the Great Depression. Booky is a ten year old girl who tries her best to make Christmas a happy one for her family.

Booky's father worked for the T. Eaton Company as a harness maker in the horse stables. In November 1932, Eatons upgraded from horse drawn delivery wagons to trucks. This put Booky's father out of work just a month before Christmas.

Booky's aunt owned a nut shop in Toronto and gave Booky a job handing out samples every Saturday. While working, Booky becomes friends with Mr. Eaton who owns Eatons department store.

One day Booky sees a man with a gun force Mr. Eaton down an alley. She runs to help him and is successful in her attempt. Mr. Eaton grants her one wish and Booky uses it to help her friend's mother. In return, Mr. Eaton invites her family to his famous Christmas party.

This is a great family movie that is fiction based on fact. Eatons department store was a great Canadian icon. Here is a bit of history on the T. Eaton Co. Ltd., or as Canadians knew it, simply Eatons:
Above: The T. Eaton Company in Toronto.

Timothy Eaton was born in Ireland in 1834, the child of a widow. His father had died two months before he was born and his mother died when he was 14, leaving him an orphan. At this time Timothy left school to work and support himself. He saved enough to sail to Canada West (now Ontario) in 1854, where he worked for some time on his sister's farm in Georgetown.

Before long, Timothy was offered and took a position as bookeeper at a general store. This was at the time when the Grand Trunk Railroad was expanding into the area. Timothy and his brother saw an opportunity to supply travelers with goods and opened a general store in 1856.

In 1860, Timothy and James moved to St. Mary's, Ontario and opened a dry goods store. Timothy also opened the T. Eaton bakery. In 1868, he married Margaret Beattie and they moved to Toronto, Ontario, where Timothy purchased a dry goods store in 1869. The store was located at 178 Yonge Street.
Above: The Yonge Street entrance to the T. Eaton Company.

The Company did well under Timothy's direction and in 1883, he expanded and moved the store to 190 Yonge Street. The T. Eaton Co. Ltd., was Toronto's first department store. The following year, it distributed a 32 page catalogue so their customers could order goods and have them shipped through the mail. An empire had been born.

Above: The 1884 edition of the T. Eaton & Co. catalogue.

When I was young, we got both an Eaton's and a Sear's catalogue. I almost always purchased something from Eaton's after I began working. Mom preferred Eaton's as well. During the 1950s, the catalogue was 400 pages of everything you could ever need or want. I loved looking through the Eaton's catalogue.

The store stayed in the Eaton's family until 1999, when it sold all of its assets to Sears. I sure miss that store. It was my favorite for many years.

Last night's movie brought back many memories of Eaton's. When I received my first pay in 1965, I bought a pretty blue wool skirt at Eaton's for $6.00. I will always remember buying that skirt, as it was the first piece of clothing I'd ever purchased with my own money.

Eaton's always had a Santa at Christmas, and Mom would take us to town and let us stand in line to tell him what we'd like to receive for Christmas. The toy department was in the basement and that is where Santa could be found. Sweet memories of Christmas and Eatons.

40 comments:

  1. I am so pleased to hear that your eye appointment was good. My Dad has the beginnings of glaucoma (and a history of other illnesses - I nearly had to go home to the UK a few months ago as it was so bad). Anyway, I am wittering away...so trying to say I appreciate his good news appointments and I'm pleased for yours! I was in Toronto in 1988, a friend and I took a few weeks off and went to Quebec, Toronto, Montreal, Hamilton, Cambridge (friends at the YWAM Base there), Ottawa - oh it was beautiful. I am from Guernsey UK and we are called the Sarnia people, so was over the moon to find a Sarnia connection there and to even meet a Guernsey expat at th e train station. I loved the Eaton Centre. Hubby and I said if we did not live in NZ, Canada would be one of our choices...you never know what the Lord has in store for us!

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  2. Karen,

    I do hope you Dad continues to get good reports. The key is to use the eye drops that are prescribed and take very good care of the eyes by having regular checkups. I go anywhere from two to four times a year, depending on what is happening.

    The Eaton's center was fabulous. Our country lost a great icon when it was sold to Se*rs.

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  3. Good Evening Mary,
    "PRAISE GOD" that your got a good report on your eye exam. I am so Thankful it all turned out good and I know you are as well. I am a diabetic as well. I don't take insulin, but I do take Glucophage 2 times a day. I take 1 pill in the morning before I have my breakfast and 1 in the evening before I have my supper/dinner. Both my Parents are diabetics as well. My Mother takes a pill twice a day also, but my Dad only controls his by diet. I only have 1 eye that I can see out of. I had an incident when I was in the first grade and it eventually led me to have my left eye to have to be removed. I know have a glass eye that I've had since the 5th grade. I have worn glasses for many years now. I do have a contact that I can wear if I want to. I do wear the contact when I go out sometimes. Most of the time I just wear my glasses. I have been made fun of all of my life, especially when I was a little girl. When I was younger it would always hurt my feeling, but now I have no problem with it because I am old enough now to realize that they are only hurting themselves and they will have to answer to GOD someday about it. I didn't mean to get off the subject about your eyes, but I am glad everything turned out good for you. I received your Christmas Card yesterday. It is beautiful. I have it sitting here on my computer desk so I can see it. "THANK YOU" so much for thinking of me. I just love how the Snowman glitters. Well, take care my friend and have a great evening. May God Bless You and Yours.

    Love & Hugs,
    Karen H.

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  4. Hey Mary,
    It's me again. I got to talking about our eyes and forgot to comment on the Eaton's Department Store. I loved reading about it. Thank You so much for sharing it with us. Here in the States, Sears has bought out our K-Marts. We used to have a Department Store(not no big named one-family owned) in my hometown years ago. I always loved going in there and looking around. This brought back memories for me. Well, take care and have a great evening. May God Bless You and Yours.

    Love & Hugs,
    Karen H.

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  5. Karen,

    Thank you for your kind words about my eye examination. I was quite relieved that all was well. I dislike going 4 times a year and a good report means only twice.

    I'm sorry for all the hurtful things that you've gone through because of your eye. Yes, others will have to answer for being so cruel.

    Brandon is ridiculed at school and it is so hard. I was called names because of my red hair. Trouble was, I would retaliate when and if I got the chance. LOL A rebellious little tomboy.

    Take care, my friend. I'm glad you are enjoying the card.

    Blessings,
    Mary

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  6. I'm so happy to hear that your exam went well. Vision is one of those things we take for granted until we have problems with it!
    I'm sure it's fun watching a movie with references to something you are familiar with. I'll have to see if it's something I can rent here!

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  7. PS Karen h,

    We used to have K-Mart here, but they closed their Canadian stores a while back. I miss them as well but have great memories of Eatons.

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  8. Mari,

    Yes, we take vision for granted until something goes wrong and then we realize that it is a gift. I am so lucky that I haven't lost any of my vision with having both of these diseases. Glaucoma can erode the optic nerve and diabetes can do a lot of damage. God is good.

    Blessings,
    Mary

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  9. Praise the Lord for your good news! And... thanks for another interesting post!

    Many blessings,
    Michele

    *You have me anxious to find out what's in those boxes you're giving the boys!*

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  10. Michele,

    I will announce the winner in the morning, for there has been a winner. I'm leaving it open until midnight tonight.

    Thanks for the kind words on my eye exam and on the post.

    Blessings,
    Mary

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  11. What a great relief to hear that your eye exam went so well! My mom has cataracts in both eyes but the doctor says they're not ready to be taken out yet...in the meantime her vision is really impeded by them.

    I haven't seen that movie you mentioned but it sounds like a wonderful story and I can imagine how much it would bring back memories of Eaton's. We had a big Eaton's store in the mall in downtown Sudbury and I remember when it closed down, I was devastated! Some of my nicest memories was going Christmas shopping there with my dad and helping him buy mom her Country Roses china set:-) xox

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  12. Pea,

    Yes, I miss Eatons very much. I had shopped there from the time I can remember going to town with Mom on Saturday mornings. My aunt was the elevator operator.

    Brandon and I used to shop at Eatons when he was small. He was only 4 when it closed, but he remembers going there. A different aunt worked in cameras.

    I do hope you get to see the movie. It was great. I like stories that show us a bit of history.

    Thanks for dropping by.
    Blessings,
    Mary

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  13. so happy for you that your eye exam went well...
    I go in Feb. for the full field test again myself.....
    my pressure is a little high.. but no diagnosis of Glaucoma (yet) just what the doctor calls pre-Glaucoma
    I loved the memory story of Eatons dept store.. reminds me of the Rexol drug store that was in my town...
    we would all meet at the soda fountain...I haven't heard of those drug stores in years...

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  14. Mimi,

    We had a Rexall here, but no soda fountain. It was in Kresge's and the Metropolitan. We most often went to the Met because Mom worked there.

    Great memories of times gone by. I wonder what our children and grandchildren will remember. I know my grandsons will remember going to Tim Hortons to enjoy a hot chocolate and a donut.

    Blessings,
    Mary

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  15. So glad to hear that your eye appointment went so well!! Praise God!!
    Love reading about Eaton's! I had never heard of it before. Thanks for sharing with us! Love and Hugs, Grams

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  16. Grams,

    Eatons is was a Canadian store and they never did venture into the US. It was a great store.

    I just emailed you after receiving your email.

    Love and blessings,
    Mary

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  17. Yeah!!!!!!!! a good report..... I love a good report... I am thankful that the Father God has His hand on those precious eyes.. Your writing brings so much to the lives of those that read it... I am thankful ..... Your stories are so wonderful... I have never heard of Eatons... but you make me miss it........ blessings

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  18. Denise,

    Thank you for your prayers for my eye exam. It went off without a hitch.

    Eatons would have been very much like Sears Roebuck was back in those days. It was a wonderful store that I have many happy memories of.

    Blessings,
    Mary

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  19. Praise the Lord for the good eye exam!!!
    The movie you described sounds like one I'd like to see. I will have to check and see if it's available here.

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  20. I am so thankful that your eye exam went so well. I loved reading about your memories my friend, bless you.

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  21. How interesting Mary. I'm sad I missed the movie tho...sounds like a great story. We watched the DVD - Charlotte's Web...the newer version. It too was good tho, so I guess no loss. But now I hope your CBS movie is repeated. I'll have to check.

    Glad to hear that your eye exam went well and your vision is still good. My FIL had glaucoma too, so I have a little idea of what you're going through.

    Happy Saturday.

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  22. Dearest Mary
    I did not realize you had glaucoma but am THRILLED to hear your eye exam when well.
    You are so talented and you carry me back in time even though I had never heard of Eatons. I loved the history of the store that you provided.
    Reading your blogs sometimes I feel as if I am reading about my life but in a different part of the world.
    Both of us are country girls with diabetes and I always wished for red hair so when older I dye mine to be dark auburn to look like Maureen O Hara. Both married about the same amount of time and in December. The seven is important as mine is 7 and you add a one and get yours 17.
    Now when you were small did your Mother give you the old catalogs to cut your own paper dolls? I could hardly wait until we got a new catalog as I had been eyeing the one on hand and knew just what I was gonna cut out and play with. I would cut out the furniture and make rooms and spend hours playing paper dolls.
    Thanks for stirring the MEMORIES.
    LOVE AND PRAYERS

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  23. Mary! I just wanted to pop over & say Hi. I am so glad to know you got a good report!

    Sounds like you are gearing up for a sweet Christmas!

    God bless!

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  24. Mountain Mama,

    Actually, I found that movie accidentally when looking for something to watch. I'm glad I did and do hope it is on over Christmas so you can see it. You would enjoy it.

    Blessings,
    Mary

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  25. Denise,

    The eye exam was very good and that means I don't have another one till next September. I do have to have a field test in April.

    I'm glad you enjoyed hearing about my memories. I really enjoy writing about things from my childhood.

    Blessings,
    Mary

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  26. Anni,

    I'm sorry you missed the movie. You would have loved it. Keep an eye on the tv programming. I may be on again over the holidays. If I hear about it being aired again, I will be sure to let you know.

    Glaucoma has no real symptoms, so many times people never even know they have it. I'm blessed and thrilled that the test was so good.

    Blessings,
    Mary

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  27. Lady Di,

    Yes, it's amazing how much we have in common. Too good ol' country gals.

    Eatons would have been much like Sears was back in those days. Do you remember going with your mother to pick up the new catalogue or was it delivered. We had to pick ours up in town, and yes, I cut many models out of that Eaton's catalogue.

    I would like to hear about some of your memories some time.

    Blessings,
    Mary

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  28. freetofly,

    Thanks so much for stopping by with well wishes on the eye exam. Yes, Christmas will be nice, as always. I do miss having our huge 7foot tree up though.

    Blessings,
    Mary

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  29. I'm glad your appointment went well. No doubt, you are relieved.

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  30. I am so happy and relieved to read that your eye exam went so well and that the news was excellent. Good vision is what we all treasure and hope to maintain and I'm glad that yours continues to do well. Many blessings.

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  31. Sound like a great movie I'm going to see if I can find the dvd to it.

    Glad to hear that your eye exam went well.

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  32. Ladies,

    Thank you so much for the well wishes on my eye exam. I appreciate your friendship.

    Blessings,
    Mary

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  33. I'm visiting later than usual today because of the T-13 project, but I'm very glad to know your eye exam went well today. I'm sure everyone is relieved, especially you.
    Hugs and blessings,

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  34. I am so glad that you got a good report on your eyes.I know that it must have done your heart good.
    Thanks for the little history-pretty neat.
    When you were buying your skirt for six dollars--I was being born.;)The first thing that I bought with my money was a pair of blue jeans.
    Wish I could still fit in them. :(

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  35. Storyteller,

    Thank you so much for your kind words about my eye exam. I am so relieved that I don't have to have another until next September. It is a simple thing, but the waiting is sooo long. The doctor double and triple books and I am not a patient person when waiting.

    Thanks for dropping by.

    Blessings,
    Mary

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  36. Sharon,

    Isn't it interesting that when I bought my skirt, you were being born. You are just a few years older than my daughter, who was born in '69.

    Thanks for your kind words on my eye exam. Yes, I certainly am relieved. I enjoyed your visit, as always.

    Blessings,
    Mary

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  37. Mary,

    Hooray!! I am very happy that your eye exam went so well. Wonderful news, indeed!

    What an interesting history of the Eaton's store. They just don't make stores like that anymore. I think all of our old stores are gone, now. I guess Sears would be considered one, but it's just not the same as it used to be.

    Hugs,
    Tina

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  38. I'm so happy that you had a good eye exam. What a wonderful Christmas gift!!!

    Mari-Nanci

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