Moving to the Children's home was actually a great improvement over our previous living situation. We now were in a dependable environment, had a clean bed to sleep in, clean cloths, three well prepared meals a day and a routine to our daily activities. The children's home was pretty much self sustaining. There was an on site dairy where the older boys milked the cows at 4am and again at 4pm. The milk was brought to the kitchen to be separated and pasteurized. We had fresh whole milk and cream with homemade butter. The orphanage also had pens with pigs so we had fresh bacon, ham, sausage and lard. There was a chicken coup with lots of chickens that provided fresh farm eggs. Sister D who ran the kitchen made homemade bread every other day. I have never tasted bread that could begin to compare with what Sister D made. The experience at the children's home taught me many life lessons.
One experience was the incident with the hair. I had long, stringy, straight blond hair. I barely would take the time to run a comb through the tangled locks much less fix it. Besides I had no idea how to fix it, I was only eight. My mother sometimes would comb and put my hair in metal curlers. Anyway, Sister JL one day told me to curl my hair. Not accustom to following directions or trying to figure out what was meant, decided I had other things to do. I found a curler and wound the ends of my hair around the one curler. Later that afternoon I took the curler out and sort of combed my hair. I soon learned that was not what was expected. Sister JL enlisted the assistance of two other girls, sat me on a stool and proceeded to cut my hair. I can remember crying "Don't cut my hair. (hiccup) My mom won't know me". All the while big alligator tears rolling down my cheeks. The next weekend when dad visited he asked who cut my hair I meekly said Sister JL. I didn't want him to be disappointed that I had not done what Sister JL had instructed me to do. I think he told me my hair looked cute. After that I was more than happy with the hair cut, lot less fuss.
Self reliance was expected, either figure out what the expectation was or there were swift consequences.