you may have inherited from a female ancestor (wedding ring or other jewelry, china, clothing, etc.) If you don’t have any, then write about a specific object you remember from your mother or grandmother, or aunt (a scarf, a hat, cooking utensil, furniture, etc.)

I love to hear your stories and tell you mine, the stories of my own mother and grandmother’s things, things that I call heirlooms. They’re what memories are made of…

My mother had been given me her original tiny two-tone white and gold wedding ring, from my dad, before she died and I had worn it for several years. It wasn’t anything fancy and all the diamond chips had since fallen out. After her funeral my sister Sharon, told me that I should give it to my dad. I felt bad and gave in.

I wish I hadn’t, because he in-turn gave it to her and she lost it. I was not happy. My mom had also given me her old Monroe High School class ring, but I gave it to my sister’s daughter Teresa Ann. Something I now regret as well. I had worn it for years, but took it off and put it in a safe place for keeping, but it seemed wrong to just keep it in a trinket box, so I gifted it; my mistake. Although I’m very sure she will care for it, I just miss wearing it, at times.

I have several of my Grandma Elvie’s hankies; I love old hankies. I use them as decorations all over my house; under plants and in vignettes. I also collect old aprons from church rummage sales, garage sales and thrift stores. I’m not sure why, they just remind me of my childhood for some reason.  I have one of my mom’s and two of my Grandma Dorothy’s and I will cherish them, always. I’ve often thought of having one made just for me to wear, so that when the Grand’s come over, they’ll see me in it.  Then when I’m gone it will be a subtle reminder of me. (Just something I think about – silly I know).

I have my Mom’s old black coat that she wore everywhere, it reminds me of her. She always wore a sheer black scarf with it and a silver letter “B” pin for “Ball” hung the lapel.  I have no idea where either of those items went to but I have the coat. I should have it cleaned and wear it myself, but I rarely ever wear a coat, even though it’s freezing outside and I own well over 50 coats should I decide to wear one to a special event; otherwise, no.

I do have a few other items around the house that remind me of her, very few, I only wish that I would have had more backbone and stopped those people that came in like vultures after my mom’s death and just pillaged the place, they took all kinds of stuff. They even took the afghan off our couch that she had made. They took her little white Lhasa Apso bed-dog that she had made. My mom was crafty; she had crocheted Afghans and had them everywhere, all missing. I’m not even sure where she found time to do it. I can remember her sitting for hours, after work, crocheting. She would let me crochet for an hour or so and compliment my work effort. Then explain where I went wrong, as she proceeded to rip out all the bad rows I had done, without complaining. I find it funny now.

Those people took pots and pan and other household items, clothing and jewelry; nothing was sacred. They didn’t even give much thought to the fact that we still lived there and may possibly need some of those items. They just took it. I still have no idea why or what they did with them. I think about that often. WHY? It must have been because Bill was her second husband and they wanted those items for themselves. Since I seen her buy or make the majority of the items, they weren’t retrieving gifts. I really have no idea. Maybe someday it will become clear, but for the items I do have I will cherish always her memory and the time I spent with her. She would go that extra mile on every holiday, making them extra special for us. When I look at them or use them, I try to tell my children the stories she shared with me of her mother as she cooked and the things that meant a lot to her.

These cherished items or mementoes aren’t valued by others as great treasures but to me they mean the world. I will hold her memory close to my heart and think of her when I wear her old apron or say something goofy that she said when she put these items on. She had a hundred silly and/or strange sayings and superstitions, which she would utter while working, cooking or driving. It’s all those little things that made her a prominent woman in my history book.

All experience is an arch, to build upon. ~ Henry Adams

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