A Tribute to Mothers

and a

Mom's Yummy Recipe

Lots of folks say, “A mother’s work is never done.” ... Others would add, “The hand that rocks the cradle, rules the world.” … Truthly, most of us have some heart-tugging memories of our own mother and grandmother, which we pull from that hidden box within where we store special things. Memories that give comfort and warmness.


In the course of pulling together the true stories of what would become, Shades of Color, Clifton Savoy was blessed with the opportunity for one-on-one interviews with contributors to this Northwestern OSU 1960s story. Fabulous experiences. At least five of the individuals mentioned how their lives were set on a course of success by the sacrifices, mentoring, love, and tough love from their single-parent mothers. One even expressed with a laugh, “My Mom would not allow me or us to use any excuse as a reason to fail!”

Happy Mother’s Day to each of you!


The story below is from one of those interviews. It is presented anonymously, though, as the desire was to keep the spotlight on all mothers and their individual lives, devotions, and sacrifices. ... As you read, take time to smell the roses.

Campfire Story:


“I grew up in a small town in western Oklahoma in the 1940s-50s. Youngest of eleven children. Seven boys and four girls. Dad died when I was eighteen months old. Two of my older brothers were in WWII. One in Germany and other in the Philippines. Oldest sister was a valedictorian. She also was in WWII, building airplanes as a ‘Rosie Riveter.’ During my younger days and early school, there were eight children still at the house.


We were poor. In those days, there was no government handouts. Mom, it seemed, never slept. She did laundry and ironed for others. No fancy clothes washers or dryers. Lots of heating water on a stove. Also, just clothes lines to dry. There was no end to this. Piles of clothes to wash and dry ones to ironed were all over our small house. Mom (and children) did whatever it took to survive.

I remember also walking hand-in-hand with mom downtown when I was young. We’d go to restaurants, where mom would wash its dishes. I’d stay with her in the kitchen clean up area. Then we’d go to another one or walk home after closing, seven to ten blocks, late at night. She did this no matter the temperature or weather. Where we lived, freezing and snow were possible.

My brothers and sisters who were still at home pitched in to help. Older ones would help with the younger ones. They’d also help in ways to offset costs, like working in the school cafeteria for their noon lunches. I did the same when I was big enough. Also, with a large family like ours, hand-me-down clothes and shoes happened lots, and each of us were eager to get them. Sometimes, we’d have to put cardboard in the bottom of the shoe if its sole had a hole in it.

A few other families who’d lost their dads like ours, lived in our town. Don’t remember our family or theirs living on self-pity. Our moms and their families did what was necessary to survive and reach for dreams.

Thinking back to that time, I now know mom was willing to do anything legal to take care of her family, and I don’t know how she did all the things to take care of and feed us. She sacrificed her needs. Wasn’t room for any personal desires. Anything she had to do, she did. I am sure mom saved some of the best left-overs from cleaning those restaurant dishes to help feed her family. None of us starved.

I was able to play football and track in high school, and on two football state championship teams and won a bunch of track medals.


I earned enough in the summer to start at Northwestern OSU the Fall of 1962. To continue, I looked at the possibility of earning some scholarship assistance through running track as well as some type of work assistance on campus.

However, start of summer 1963, Mom had a heart attack, and bed rest was about all they could do for her. I was the youngest of my brothers and sisters, and had less life-commitments. So, I stayed home with her that Fall, and worked some at N-Natural Gas. After a while, mom recovered some, and sent me packing back to Northwestern.

There, I ran track for three years, and earned my way through a combination of a student manager position with the football team, track, and keeping the basketball uniforms clean. I wore all hats in football, except coach; including, equipment, uniforms, cleaning, game day, and injury treatment. Sometimes, though, a younger person called me ‘Coach,’ and the title felt comfortable and reinforced the vision that one day soon I would be one.

As a coach for over thirty years, I’ve been blessed to take teams to the playoffs, semi-finals, and crowned state champions in both football and track. After mentoring hundreds of athletes, and advising their parents, and knowing how much it takes for a person to pursue and reach dreams, I can truthly say…”

“Mom, I owe it all to you—my life successes. I will forever remember it was your encouragement to follow my passions and dreams!”

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Thanks for stopping by Clifton's Campfire, and sharing memories of our mothers and a little history. And, oh yes, don't forget to check out what's coming down the trail or the yummy recipe below.

Mean time, I’ll keep the campfire lit,




PS: Please share this Campfire Story in honor of Mothers. Your kind gesture may be the only Mother’s Day greeting a mother receives. 


Photos: Roses by J. Savoy


Campfire Stories coming around the bend: Memorial Day Tribute to Veterans. July 4th: ‘A World Champion Bronc Rider & an Acadamey Winning Movie Star.’ Plus, there’ll be a yummy recipe. … Free future Campfire Stories can be received by joining at: www.CliftonSavoy.com


God bless! ... cs

Recipe Today: Triple Layered Dessert

“I obtained this recipe from a friend many years ago, and it’s been passed down to my kids and grandkids. They all love it. This recipe was served at many school functions and other events. Delicious.” ... From B. Bostwick of Hooker, OK. 


Step One;

1 1/2 sticks oleo melted.

1 1/2 cups flour

1 1/2 cups chopped pecans.

Mix and spread evenly in bottom of a 9 x13 pan. Bake at 350 for 25 minutes. Let cool.

Step Two

8 0z package cream cheese softened.

1 cup powdered sugar. Add in 1 cup cool whip.

Spread on cooled crust layer. Chill 


Step Three

2 pkg instant chocolate pudding  (You can use chocolate, pistachio or lemon. I use chocolate).

3 cups milk. 

Mix instant pudding with milk. When thick spread on cheese layer. Top with one cup cool whip (I use more). Refrigerate.

If chocolate pudding is used you can decorate top with Hershey bar shavings. Enjoy!