Segment Synopsis: Thanksgiving wasn't too exciting until later years, post war. 50s and 60s they had more celebrations. There is a special service for Thanksgiving, but not in those earlier days on the farm. Halloween was done differently be the pioneers, it was considered a night for dirty tricks. He remembers seeing a wagon on top of a barn. He heard stories about moving a toilet so that people would fall into a hole before reaching the buildings. He never went halloweening, looking for apples. It's a different world, you have different values and needs growing up on the farm in the 30s. New years was celebrated with a dance in town, which was a half a year away from the July 1st dance. In the neighbourhood, the younger kids aged 5-7 would go "siaty" they would go knock on a door and say I am hear sowing and they would let you in. You would have your wheat and your little rhyme and bless the house and he would pay you 10 cents for that. They were well wishing and they would go to different houses. He would also sell weasel and squirrel furs to get some extra money to buy pants. He didn't see a Malanka until the 70s or 80s, when it was brought back by the churches in Edmonton. Parish feast days are held on the name day of the church. The church at Boyle was names after the Holy Resurrection, so it was an Easter feast. The hard part was getting a priest to come out. Christmas and Easter were the outstanding holidays, Easter was the religious one. There were graveside services a couple of weeks after Easter.
Subjects: Halloween; Thanksgiving Day; religious holidays; ritual
Segment Synopsis: His three sisters would sing together, it was lovely, he wishes he could have recorded them. His mother was a tremendous alto, "choral type". His dad was a tenor and he was the "diak" (cantor). He can't carry a note as a soloist, but he sings in a choir. They sang Christmas carols at home. Around the campfire at the lake they would sing. The lake was only a mile and a quarter away, by the church. He doesn't remember anyone in his family telling stories. They had a neighbour that would tell endless stories that were really good. He lost sleep because of the horror stories he would tell. Tells a story he remembers.
Subjects: Christmas carols; religious songs; singing; tales
Segment Synopsis: His sisters and brother were older than he was and would go to dances frequently. They would go to town to the New Years and Dominion Day dances, there were also weddings and other dances. They would be held in the community hall or in the school. There would be an orchestra with a violin, guitar, and sometimes a banjo or accordion. They did round dances. His brother got a gramophone, when Nick was about 6-8 years old. They would listen to modern music, operatic music, all kinds of music. When his dad would go to town for bee supplies, he would go to the Ukrainian Bookstore and look at records and bring them home. His brother and sisters were frequently in productions which included Ukrainian dance. They would have plays and skits to break up the dance. He was involved in plays when he went to town to go to high school. They had a teacher would could play the piano so they had choirs, solos, duets, and short plays or skits. They were light hearted and funny.
Subjects: bands (music); dances (social events); drama; phonographs; school plays
Segment Synopsis: Nick's first language was Ukrainian. His brother and sisters had already gone through public school, so when he started school at the age of 6 he was fluent in English. With his mom and dad he always spoke Ukrainian. With his siblings he would speak English. They got in trouble for speaking Ukrainian in school. The school district would hire Ukrainian teachers, but that didn't matter, they spoke English in school. They had Ukrainian school on Saturday. He is fluent in Ukrainian and English, and can read and write. They speak about Ukrainian in Ukrainian. Talks about a trip to Spain.
Subjects: bilingual education; languages