Sunday, December 18, 2016
One thing is for sure in this great country of ours....if you live a long time you accumulate a lot of stuff. Hence the explosion of places where you can rent a space, store your junk, then lock it up and forget about it. Then, after paying some ridiculous monthly fee for a couple of years you can revisit your junk...now mildewed, melted and unrecognizable...and arrange for the dumpster you should have ordered two years ago. It's the American way.
When we moved last year I was forced to take a look at my own accumulation of stuff. It also gave my husband a chance to view my previously hidden stash of scented candles, paper napkins and other things I had squirreled away. It was not quite ready for an episode of Hoarders, but moving in that direction. Being the good Mother that I am I filled the cars of my children, giving them the chance to stash more stuff in their own bulging storage rooms. It's Moms way.....
It was during this soul-searching purge that I discovered two items that needed to be "re-gifted" to people who didn't know the items existed. Neither was worth much in the way of money, but both had sentimental value that I wanted to share.
The first item is a small table that belonged to my Mother. Her brother, my uncle, made the table in a shop class at school before I was born. It was one of only a few things mom held onto her whole life. When she died two years ago it was one of only a few things that survived when her house burned after her death.
My uncle preceded Mom in death by a year or so; eventually his oldest daughter purchased and settled his house. I thought about her often as her financially and emotionally draining work on the house progressed. By that time I was going thru my own painful process with mom's belongings, and the little table stared at me from the corner of the basement.
My cousin seemed pleased when I told her about the table; it seemed things had come full circle to have it find a place in my uncle's former home. It took a while to get it to her because we live in different states, but I happily delivered it to her last fall. I know she will enjoy having it for years to come...the little table is really home now and my mom would be happy about that.
My second re-gifting was just this week. As a little girl I was always bugging mom's girlfriends for their "old jewelry". Broken earrings, beads and anything that sparkled filled a little jewelry box I carried around constantly. It's likely because I badgered her relentlessly, but one of mom's friends, Dorothy, gave me a bangle bracelet with her "D" initial engraved on it. It fired a love of monogrammed things I've carried all my life! I must have been about seven when the stainless steel bracelet joined the treasures in my little jewelry box.
Mom and Dorothy remained friends for the remainder of their lives. When both could no longer drive they talked on the phone, finally their failing hearing made that impossible, too. I took Mom to her friends 90th birthday party...Mom being the younger gal by a couple of years.
Suddenly both of these good women are gone, with the two remaining daughters becoming friends on Face Book. Now, looking through things I rediscovered the bracelet Dorothy had given me over sixty years ago, and I knew it also needed to go home. This week we got together and I passed the monogrammed bracelet on to Dorothy's daughter, Denise.
To my way of thinking this is the best kind of re-gifting. These items have gone thru many hands, but they are tied right back to the original gift giver by a ribbon of love. They will rest happily in their new homes, the memories they have accumulated passed on to their new owners.
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays....Life is Good