Through Any Given Door ~ Catherine Sevenau

Catherine Sevenau Catherine Sevenau is a writer, humorist, and storyteller living in Sonoma, California. The stories in this series are excerpts from her book, Through Any Given Door, a Family Memoir. The full memoir is available as a web series at A longtime Realtor and Owner/Broker at CENTURY 21 Wine Country, she can be reached at [email protected]


Bought a spider

Posted on January 15, 2023 by Catherine Sevenau

Chapter 46: 1948 • Sonora

Note: my brother did not keep a diary for much of 1948. Many entries were typical posts about Boy Scouts, band, and building bookcases, some days were missed, and some weeks and months were completely blank.

1948 • Larry’s diary (age 13 and 14)

Jan 1  USC lost in Rose Bowl. Took inventory at back room of store

Jan 2  Worked in store cleaning up. Now have 159 books.

Jan 3–13  (misc. entries in diary)

Jan 14  Got a plaid shirt and western belt for my birthday. Today I am 14 on the 14th. Oh, Viola at school

Jan 15–16  (misc. entries)

Jan 17  Aunt Elizabeth came from out east in Minnesota to look at the store and visit and she may stay.

Jan 18  Went over to Columbia to parade and golden centennial discovery day celebration. Bought a spider.

Jan 19–20  (misc. entries)

Jan 21  Got sick with the flu today and came home after lunch and went to bed. I missed all the celebration of the 49’rs

Jan 22  Missed boy scout meeting and stayed home in bed with flu. Elizabeth went to Sonora Inn because she is ill.

Jan 23  Another Centennial Celebration today and I did not do much this time because I am still sick.

Jan 24  Had chow mein and noodles for a change from soup. Am feeling a little better, Elizabeth came back from the hotel.

Jan 25  Sunday: Got out of bed today. How Soon is top song on the Hit Parade with Ballerina second. 

Jan 26  Elizabeth, Carleen and I played rummy. I won

Jan 27–30  (misc. entries)

Jan 31  Overslept today and was late to washing windows over at Sprouse Reitz and Adrian’s Beauty Shop

Clemens siblings 1950, Sonora, California: Carleen, Claudia, Betty, Larry, Cathy in front

Feb 1  Sunday: Nothing much happened today but we went to church in Columbia with Aunt Elizabeth

Feb 2–4  (misc. entries in diary)

Feb 5  No Court of Honor tonight because of thick snow which has been falling for last three days

Feb 6  Lights keep going out lately because of snow and because of month long drought

Feb 7–12  (misc. entries on the weather, woodworking, and band) 

Feb 13  Lucky Friday the 13th. I found a five dollar bill in the Palace Meat Market

Feb 14  Humm, no Valentines, but today is Saturday and I did not get a chance to give any of mine away

Feb 15–17  (misc. entries about the new bookcase he is making)

Feb 18  When playing football today I chipped my tooth and got my undershirt torn halfway in half

Feb 19–28  (misc. entries about ball games, his bookcase building, and boy scouts)

Feb 29  Sunday: This page will stay blank for a long time. Leap year celebrations are many but I stayed home


Mar 1–14  (misc. entries)

Mar 15  I may have found my coat which I lost two weeks ago. Richard Young may be wearing it now.

Mar 16  Got my coat back after Young was called into office and Mr. Dawson and Mom clarified it.

Mar 17–20  (misc. entries)

Mar 21–29  (no entries)

Mar 30  Allan Curnow came to my room and I gave him some stamps. Rained all day and also hailed

Mar 31  $16.00 stamps from Jamestown

To be continued…


Catherine Sevenau is a writer, humorist, and storyteller living in Sonoma. The stories in this series are excerpts from her book, Through Any Given Door, a Family Memoir, the full memoir is available at Catherine is an author of three books, several volumes of family genealogy, and a longtime Broker/Realtor at CENTURY 21 Epic Wine Country. [email protected]


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