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My Turn: Mom paid for daughter’s $350 wedding dress with $2 bills

The past brings up certain embarrassments and great laughter.

Recently, having a bonding day with my daughter-in-law, a “blast from the past” came into our conversation.

Fifty-three years ago, it was time to pick out my wedding gown and headpiece. My mom, sister and I went on our spree. All bridal stores were fine, but Bonwit Teller was the best. My gown was picked out with no trouble and a Jackie Kennedy pillbox hat adorned my head.

What a wonderful day!

When it came time to pay, the salesperson asked my mother if it would be charge or cash. Naturally, my mom said, “Cash.” She never owned a credit card in her entire life. The items were calculated and a receipt was given. Mom reached into her purse and pulled out a canvas bank bag. Out came $350, all in $2 bills.

Imagine our surprise! Bonwit Teller and all those $2 bills. Wow! What a first for this fancy store. My sister just walked away and I was in awe.

“Where did you get all those bills?” I asked.

“From your dad’s pay envelope,” she replied.

My dad worked for a government agency and was always paid in cash. There happened to be a $2 bill enclosed every Friday, so Mom saved all those bills for my wedding gown.

People in my parents’ era were savers and very resourceful. They knew the value of living within their means. No trillion-dollar debt, then.

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