Sisters Svea Henry and Mable Moran unite at 252 Sherwood Avenue in Maillardville, B.C. to share memories of growing up - first in the little white house and later on in the pink stucco house next door.
The white house was built in the early 1920s by our father, Gustav Anderson, who emigrated from Finland with his wife Aino and one son, our older brother Ejlert Gustav, to have a better life in Canada.
Sherwood Avenue was a relatively short street made of gravel. We pretty well knew everyone on the street.
We played hopscotch, tag, skipping and marbles on the street and in the large open field nearby where it was easier to do our way of gymnastics, baseball and any other kind of games we made up.
Playtime was fun in our backyard, with plenty of vegetables in the garden. Chickens roamed freely and one cow mooed.
Jumping from the hayloft in the barn was fun.
We climbed nearby trees and walked through tall grass viewing snakes, birds, etc.
Sometimes we wandered as far as the Fraser River and onto the docks, where we shouted up to the ship's crews for stamps from around the world.
Fraser Mills is where the Canadian Western Lumber Company was, the third largest lumber company in the world at that time.
Most of the local parents worked there and when the whistle blew, we knew it was either lunchtime or quitting time of the day.
The little white house was comfortable, but we had no bathroom so we had to venture out to the outhouse when needed.
Years later, the pink stucco house was built next by our our stepfather, Emil Stenback.
It was a much larger home and to our joy, it had a bathroom.
Streetcars ran from Vancouver to Fraser Mills.
Buses were later added from New Westminster to Fraser Mills. The City limit was at Swift Packing House near the bottom of Braid Street, which was one fare.
Pennies were required to go as far as Fraser Mills.
Children attended Millside Elementary School to Grade 6. Some of us had a fair distance to walk.
We played in the school grounds until a teacher came out onto the school deck with a huge metal bell, which she rang up and down to alert us it was time to go to our classroom.
If any child created mischief, they were sent to the principal's office to be punished with a large leather strap, slapped onto the palm of the hand.
The severity of the offence determined how many times you were slapped.
Sadly, these homes are now for sale on the market and will no doubt be demolished.
One last look was our joy and we will always treasure happy memories.
Mable Moran Coquitlam