About SMFairies

“As I was watching us laugh and play yesterday, I reflected on the faces of now experienced women. It was AWESOME in the AWE sense of the word. I had never seen that transformation before, but yesterday every one of you were beaming, and I could see the stories in your faces. We have so much to say in our lines, and brows, and smiles!” Donna

This statement evolved from a casual discussion to a flourish of ideas, lots of laughs & finally into a deeper look within. The smiles, laughs, camaraderie & unconditional love over the years shone forth. As we expressed our wildest visualizations of our future, the years faded. Gone were the liver spots, now freckles, grey hair now highlights, cellulite… proof of a road well traveled and the crow’s feet turning each of us into a bird of paradise!

How do we celebrate a lifelong friendship that began in grade one of a Catholic school in a small suburban town? What is it that separated us from the PSK (Public School Kids) and bonded us for life, with their dubious distinction, as the “Saint Mary’s Fairies”? 

As we reminisce, perhaps it was the Sisters of St. Joseph, the May Processions, First Friday Masses and our Monsignor along with the Holy Spirit that has kept us in God’s good graces over the years. There were the blended disciplines of the Baltimore Catechism and the Palmer Method of writing that helps us to document our life today. And did I mention Gregorian Chants?  Singing the glorious chants may be the closest we came to being angels! With all these mentioned, it was our choice to embrace & celebrate our ‘Circle of Friendship’ over the years…not just the waiting for the ‘glory days’ of our pending sainthoods, that brought us to blog collectively today…for we are divine works in progress!

Our St. Mary Fairytale blog is presented to you from members of the 1967 8th grade graduation class of St. Mary School, Stoughton, MA.




The Start of it All

This year certainly wasn’t the start of it all; 1959 was. First grade.

This year was the start of the blog & other new beginnings yet to be determined. It’s the years in between where all the points in time merged into a blooming, friendship of schoolmates. Some points in time are long, some short, some a continual flow.

This past winter was one of the longest, coldest, snowiest, bone- chillin’ winters we would ever want to remember. (I think I sound like Yosemite Sam!) You know the winters that legends are made of? Our ancestors would slightly exaggerate by saying “We walked uphill, both ways to & from school, in the dark, no shoes, to a one-room school house with a single piece of coal to warm us & on a good day we had a slice of bread for lunch!” as we sat there as children rolling our eyes. (Gee, I wonder where our kids get it?!) This winter fell short of the Blizzard of ‘78’, but not by much.

We gathered in March 2011 for an overdue get-together. A breath of spring it was after this winter. It was anticipated that we needed this time together…our rebirth in spring, our celebration of one more year together. This was our communal birthday party to be celebrated with a good old-fashioned Yankee Swap for the gift giving with a side of sugar-laden cake & ice cream. Yea, life is sweet!

The Yankee Swap consisted of a delightful mix of gifts from truffles to t-shirts to a giant magnifying glass. We know not to take ourselves too seriously! We all had the common courtesy not to bring ‘Depends’, whether we needed them or not! It was a perfect balance for food, fun & laughter.

As the nibbling continued, we called the friends that couldn’t be there & made plans for the next get-together. There were other group projects planned and topics of caring & sharing that needed reviewing for both individuals & as friends. As we all donned our magnifying glasses that sit on the nose, purchased from the local dollar store, we marked our calendars. Immediately menus were made for the next gathering of the clan; pot-luck entrees, appetizers, drinks, desserts, lists of allergies & nutritional needs allowed for! We’re good to go! The cycle continues.

On that day we caught up on lots of news not knowing that we would be making headlines, our own…on the blog that is….SMFairytales! What a difference that first day of school made back in Sept. 1959 at St. Mary School.

Who knew?



The May Procession

There is something so special about May. In the movie Camelot, they sung of the ‘merry month of May’. Each spring we shed the heaviness of the winter months. In May, the spring comes to full bloom and with the warmth of the sun we come to fruition also.
Many cultures over the ages have celebrated with flowers & song for any number of reasons. In parochial schools, we celebrate Mary. This is Mary’s month world round.

As students of St. Mary’s School, we didn’t just get ready for the annual May procession, we prepared for it. THIS was a celebration! The time honored tradition dictated hymns, flowers, our best clothes and mostly…our best behavior. We memorized hymns, practiced our singing, and perfected our posture while standing still! I can’t be sure, but I think we said extra prayers for the boys’ best possible behavior. If we didn’t, I’m sure the nuns did! After all, this wasn’t just a St Mary’s Fairy thing. The entire congregation was invited! This was a celebration of Mary in front of the entire town! We were the principal celebrants, all eight grades participating in flawless harmony.

As this was all-inclusive within the parish, that meant full family participation too! Get out the Easter clothes; polish the shoes; matching purses, shoes, gloves & hats for the ladies; men dusted off their best Sunday suits, ties with a tie tack, cuffs with cufflinks; girls had their locks curled with ‘Dippity-do’, boys got their hair combed withBrylcreem’. Where are the camera, film & flashbulbs?

Baths for everybody!!!

In the best fashion known to us, we donned our finery, placed wreaths on our heads and carried bouquets. We took family & parish photos, smiled a lot, sang our best, fidgeted a little. This day carried our tradition for another year. The celebration instilled in us memories for a lifetime. 

We can now smile politely at the ‘flourish & formality’ of the times. As we pull out the family photos, some wrinkled in the backs of bureaus & boxes, the black & white memories come alive again. (Smile.) I like to think we made our families proud. I hope the Sisters of St. Joseph felt the same way. Mary too!

As we the SMFs gathered this past May, we set aside time to celebrate in the same fashion. (Less pomp, less circumstance.) Hot off the press (downloaded from the Internet) were our hymns, headpieces prepared in advance, fresh flowers cut from the garden, matching capes, and our hand painted Madonna all ready for a procession of honor. The voices were slightly off-key (practice lasting only minutes) for a much smaller audience. The procession only went around the yard instead of the streets surrounding the church. We sang. We laughed. We cried. We cheered. We celebrated. We were one in memories. We were one in honoring the past as we carried our tradition fifty years into the future to our present day. We knew Mary was there smiling & celebrating with us. We could feel it in the air.


Our May Procession 2011

Bring flow'rs of the fairest,
Bring flow'rs of the rarest,
From garden and woodland
And hillside and vale;
Our full hearts are swelling,
Our glad voices telling
The praise of the loveliest
Rose of the vale.

 O Mary! We crown thee with blossoms today,
Queen of the Angels, Queen of the May,
O Mary we crown thee with blossoms today,
Queen of the Angels, Queen of the May.

No comments: