Wednesday, November 26, 2014

It's The Simple Things That Make Life Special

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving Day and we won't be gathering at our house this year, but rather at my son's new place, which is quite roomy and has acres for rambunctious kids to romp and play.

So, to make up for that a bit, we have five little boys at our house today, to have a "boys' day" at Nana and PawPaw's.

Such fun. Such memories for them. They won't forget these days.

I was talking to my husband, better known as PawPaw to these little boys, just yesterday about how we surround ourselves with so much junk that really doesn't mean anything. Then I realized that those little things do mean something. We do it for our kids and our grandkids, we give them memories to hold after we're gone from this life.

As a child, I was blessed to live next door to my Mama Ruby and Papa Leon Day, my maternal grandparents.

My Mama Ruby was a childlike little woman who taught us to love simple things, like a red sky at sunset that she said was, "the rabbits cooking supper." To this day, I still say to myself at a beautiful sunset, "look, Mama...the rabbits are cooking supper." To the day she died, if she stepped outside at night and there was a beautiful moon, she called me to go and look. These are simple memories that you pass along, and hopefully, others that follow after you pass along.

She always had a playhouse outside with discarded kitchen items, old pots and pans, cocoa cans, etc for us to play. She told me one time that when she moved into her first home, the first thing she did was go outside and build a playhouse. Mama was 14 when she married and they had to live with her parents for one year. That was the only way her daddy would allow her to marry so young.

I'm the baby in Mama's arms in this photo. There were a few more to follow after this picture was taken.

Mama Ruby cooked whatever we wanted for our breakfast, and we never all wanted the same thing. She was just that way. I'm not quite as good as her, but I thought about her as I cooked oatmeal for some, cinnamon rolls and hot chocolate for all and then added the little individual things that each preferred.

Mama gave us cocoa and sugar in little tiny snuff cans and let us pretend we were dipping snuff. She never touched tobacco, neither did Papa, he was a Pentecostal preacher and she was an angel! By the way, it didn't make me want to use tobacco products when I grew up either.

I felt just a bit Mama Ruby-ish as I watched those five little boys at my table. I even let them keep their jackets on at the table, although I did insist on them removing the hats.

Here's why, and this is why I'm writing this today. When I was a child, we all had "our special" dishes at Mama's house, things we liked and picked for ours. I always particularly loved an old broken, glued together, no handle tea cup. When she passed on, I inherited that teacup and it's a treasure to me.

A few years ago, I started collecting those old restaurant ware dishes, the real thick, mostly white things, the plates, bowls, creamers, etc. They're just a bunch of mismatched things, not a set of anything. I donated most of my creamers to a youth yard sale because I just had so much clutter, but I couldn't turn loose of the bowls.

I have all these mismatched thick, heavy, white restaurant ware bowls and when I put them on the table, it's "I want that one, I want that one." Everyone has a favorite.

I love washing them and turning them out on the counter to dry. I love to look at them and think abut how one day, one of these just might have a special place in a grown up grandchild's home and, who knows? maybe they'll be writing a blog post about the memories they made at Nana's house.

So, it's not necessarily unnecessary clutter that we surround ourselves with, it's memories! Some of the kids may only get to come occasionally, but they will always carry the memories with them.

It's our job to make those memories good ones, because they will carry the memories, good or bad, for the rest of their lives.

Blessings from Patti's Place to your place.

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