To live in hearts we leave behind, Is not to die.
I didn’t exactly make a New Year’s resolution to start writing in this blog again but I’ve been thinking about it a lot. I really should; I have so much to say. <hehehe> So here we are already three weeks into the New Year and a post is born.
My daughter was here last week and somehow we got onto the subject of how people who live here or their relatives dispose of their stuff when they leave to go into a assisted living, nursing home or the funeral parlor. There are often this building’s version of a garage sale. A notice is posted on the bulletin board that such and such an apartment is having a moving sale and the apartment is opened up for a couple of days for the browsers and bargain hunters. Sometimes there is a notice that if you need something, come have a look see and it’s yours for the taking.
That’s how I got some bowls and plates my daughter was admiring (and that’s how this conversation got started). That’s what I want to happen to my stuff when the time comes. Not that I’m planning on going anywhere soon but when you get to my age and have the health problems I have, AND you live in a building where more than half the residents are Senior Citizens who are moving on to somewhere else with alarming frequency you think about these things.
So I told Kerryn that she and her brother should take what they want and give the rest of it away. Of course that got us started on a walk down menory lane as we glanced around my apartment and she pointed out some things that had sentimental value to her. That reminded me of the most important thing I have that belonged to my Grandmother. My kids have heard the story about the nearly 100 year old bird of paradise milkweed pod I have carefully drug around with me since 1974 more than once but of course it doesn’t have as much significance for them as it does me because they didn’t really know my Gramma Della Hoyt Fate. It makes me sad to think that after I go (aka die) that memento and the memories connected to it will be lost. She told me I should write the story down so it would survive me. So here it is.
This is a picture of the milkweed pod my Gramma, Della Fate kept in her bedroom, hanging on her mirror. It was picked on the property my Grandfather owned on the day he asked her to marry him so let’s do some math here. Grandmother was 80 years old when she died in 1974 so that means she was born June 13, 1984. She was 22 years old when she married my Grandfather and if I remember correctly, they had a fairly long engagement–at least a year. Probably two. So this milkweed pod is at least 96 years old. It hangs on a picture of some Victorian Ladies in my bedroom.
That potholder is an example of some of the fancy crochet work my grandmother used to do. I really regret not keeping one of the high heeled slippers she made in the ’60s and stiffened with some kind of starch so they would stand up. She made a lot of them and gave them away as gifts to the ladies in her Bible Study and Prayer group. They were really cute but not exactly something this budding hippy was interested in. She also made a lot of doilies and stuff. For a long, long time time I had a purple and lavender flowered towel with crocheted lavender borders that she made for me as a young teen. Those were my favorite colors at the time. Eventually the towel wore out and the crocheting disintegrated.
But my favorite were her rag rugs. In the summer she would sit out on what she called the North porch (it was enclosed and essentially served as an additional room on the house for three seasons) and rip old dresses and remnants of fabric into long strips which she then sewed together on her old treadle machine (which I have) and rolled into huge balls. (The north porch led to her front door and the South porch led to her back door but I always found that confusing because I think the North porch faced east and the South porch faced North. <shrug>) Then in the winter she used a giant crochet hook and turned them into rag rugs. I used to help her with rolling those strips of fabric into balls. My favorite memories of my Gramma take place on that porch. I even had my own rocking chair there.
Here’s Barbra Streisand singing my favorite song about memories. I love this song. I’d like it played at my memorial service.