Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Anna Marie (Miller) Robbins - Class of 1959

Wow! How do you compress 51 years into a ’short note’! Well guess I can try! I am Anna Marie Miller Robbins. I now live in Spokane, Washington.

I was married between my sophomore and junior year to Chuck Robbins of Charles B. Robbins & sons. The fellows owned and operated a sawmill. I attended Point arena high thru my junior year. When I signed up for my senior year I found that I was expecting our first child! Sheryl was born in March. I attended my class graduation with Sherri in my arms and was very proud but hurt so because it was our plan for me to be in that class. Mr. Jim Russell, principal of the grade school and a dear friend and teacher for many years gave me a hug and said that I had the ‘best’ diploma I could have in my arms!

I worked at the Anchor Bay store for a bit and then found that I was expecting again! A beautiful red-headed boy was born in August. Charlie(I call him Robbie). I was very busy being a wife and mother.

The sawmill business was dwindling down so the guys decided to move on... In 1963 we moved to Troy , Mt for a short time then to White Pine, Mt. Then an address change to Trout Creek soon after. We lived there for over 40 years. We had a grade B. dairy for 3 years or so as well as 30-50 head of beef cattle. We grew nearly all we needed. Chickens, pigs, ducks, geese, you name it we grew it! And butchered it as well I might add! In 1965 we were surprised with another little girl! We called her Rebecca of Robbins Roost Ranch. She was a blessing in disguise as I was unsure if I wanted to continue being a farmer/ranchers wife! Heck! I was the farmer as well as he was!.. Anyway we continued on and raised all our family there. All our kids attended the same school for 12 years each. We had a good life. A hard life at times. Chuck was a good husband and father. He was a workaholic, as was I so we built a beautiful home together. We camped and fished and hunted (we lived in the heart of elk country so why would any man want to leave?) Our kids were very active in school in music and sports as well. Our football team went to state 3 years in a row so you can imagine that we had some great trips around Montana, IN THE DEAD OF WINTER!.

We were very active in the Grange at all levels. I was a Officer in the Montana State grange for over 13 years, I was youth director as well as Membership Director. I traveled the 7 Western states with National officers all during this time. Mostly traveling winter and spring when life was not so busy. I was also kept busy with my church activities.

After attending a class reunion in Point Arena, I cannot remember the exact year; It may have been ‘74/’75. I had a wonderful visit with everyone, most of all Leonard McMillen. After we talked he helped me realize that I really did like my way of life in Montana. I returned to Montana inspired and decided it was time I fulfilled MY DREAM to get a diploma! I pushed and tugged until I got Thompson Falls High school to start an Adult Education class (several of us had attended such a class in Pt. Arena. But were not given our credits as they closed the class just before the class was to end due to Air Force guys being transferred. I did my Junior year there) I made them aware of this as I was not going through this again! Long story short I and one other were the first adult grads at this school! I graduated in 1976! My daughter in 1977, my son in 1978, the Rebecca in 1983. Praise the Lord I felt fulfilled! My ‘Other Mother’ Betty Solbeck Iverson drove up from Santa Rosa to attend.. I was so honored by this!

I know I need to end this soon. You must be getting very tired by now! Life went on and got much easier. My husband had always dreamed of being a farmer. He too realized his dreams… He worked at a big sawmill as head millwright for 26 years, retiring in 1992 All this time we ran the ranch and he had his welding shop at the ranch. As I said he was a workaholic! A year and one half after he retired he was killed in a horrific accident when the tractor rolled and landed on top of him. The day before Thanksgiving!

Needless to say life changed very, very fast. I had no idea what to do with the rest of my life. My whole goal in life had been to be a wife and mother and now what? We were married 38 years. My 3 kids had their lives to live and none of them were close to me. I stayed on the ranch for 8 years. I kept the cattle for 3 years and realized it was too much for me. I had always liked Spokane. My brother, John and his family live there. My mom as well. So... I moved here.

I live across the street from my 89 year old mom and am able to help her stay in her own home for a bit longer. Sherri lives in Oregon . Rebecca, Plano, Tx, Rob lives 20 miles away. I have 9 grandkids (3 foster grandkids as well) and 4 great grandkids. I have had 8 family members in Iraq at one time. Believe you me I am a praying woman!

I am active in the senior citizens group here. Very active with my church family. I can assure that without my strong faith I would not be writing this letter. I have no idea how people that do not have the Lord in their life make it at times like these.

I am planning on coming to this reunion and am so excited to meet everyone again! I have renewed a friendship with Matt Piper after 40 years. We have been talking for about 6 years now! I saw Joan Iverson Robinson in New Hampshire years back. Visited with Barbara Craig Tanis, Barbara Duncan Opperman. Rodney Ferguson. Others I can’t remember now...I really hope to see many old faces. Old? Guess I should use a different word,.Hummm! Oh Stan...Don”t worry...I can never forget you...My other brother!

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