Tuesday, March 8, 2011
Memories of Mother
Lena Miller had dainty little things (doilies, glass bedside lamps, etc.) here and there throughout the house as I was growing up. Actually, I should have said 'parsonages' because I lived in a total of seven parsonages from my birth till I was 18 years old. Greensboro, North Carolina to Galax, Virginia to Woodlawn, then Abingdon, Virginia...then they made me be a yankee and we moved to McComb, Ohio, then Sabina. I moved to Columbus, Ohio when I graduated from high school and basically call that my hometown now.
We lived in parsonages because Daddy was a minister who was sent to churches where his gifts were put to work for the Lord and the good of the congregations. Our family was an important part of his ministry. He was one of those peacemaker-type-guys...a wonderful gift that this daughter did not inherit. Yes, I'm a PK! Shocker, huh!?! Do you know why people say that the preacher's kids are the worst ones in town? It's because they have to play with the members' kids! just sayin'
Mother took all the things that came from the years she and Daddy shared together, raising two sons and two daughters, and made them work in big houses, small houses and some in-between. She was a genius at making things work in a house, no matter what the furniture looked like or how much room she had to work with. After retirement my parents had to pare down their belongings. Then, because of their health needs, they pared down yet again to move into an apartment in the retirement community where they lived till they went to Heaven. My brothers, sisters and I divided their things and have now incorporated tangible memories of our sweet parents into our own homes.
What does one do with the remnants of childhood...special things that might not fit into the decor we've chosen as our own style...but things we don't really want to part with because of the memories? Well, once I strip the awful yellow paint from it, my carpenter grandfather's tool box that went along on his jobs will soon become our coffee table in the den. A couple of Mother's dainty lamps have been paired with new shades to brighten spaces in the two 11' x 17' guest rooms that are long and dark because of only two small windows in each. I have several of my mother's doilies scattered here and there throughout our home. One is on our mantle, another lays (or is it lay or lies...whatev) askew on the wooden ironing board I'm using as a sofa table in the den. (I bought that board when my daughter and I visited the Southern Living Fair in September of 2010 in my hometown.)
Then I got an idea - one I thought was a pretty good one. I sewed two similar-in-size doilies onto two matching pillows. They looked pretty. Then I was going through some old jewelry and found a pin that was in Mother's things, so I pinned it to the center of the doily on one of the pillows. I had an angel pin (a gift from a dear friend who is in Heaven getting to know my mother, I'm sure) which sits in the center of the doily on the other blue pillow. Since it sports an angel...and my sister collects angels...I will put that pillow on the bed in my "Sister's Room." No, my sister doesn't have her own room here, exactly. It is a guest room that has a lot of "sister" memorobilia in it...pictures of us together when we were kids, her baby picture, pictures of our brothers holding her while sitting in the very rocker that sits in that room. It is a "sister's room!" Can you tell we might be a little bit close? (insert smile here)
I still have many of Mother's things packed away that I'll utilize someday, but for now, I'm enjoying the 'repurposing' of a few of Mother's things. And when I look at them, I'll smile because they are still being used in a parsonage...ours!
Always remember: if you have a pulse, you have a purpose...so make your life count!