Saturday, December 09, 2006


The other night we five sisters sorted through the debris of Mom’s half a century of married Christmases, witnessed by her vast collection of ornaments, figurines and do-dads. Christmas was Mom’s favorite holiday of the year; she had full size, decorated trees in every room of the house. We all contributed to her Ho-Ho Mania by gifting her with anything that we thought she didn’t already have or might want, resulting in a huge storage shed overflowing with Christmas trash and treasure.

The booty was divided up, including armless Nutcrackers, hatless Santas, broken ceramics and mangled fake greenery that none of us really wanted, but didn’t have the heart to throw away because it belonged to Mom. Each faded, lovingly used bit of decoration invoked memories of Christmas past, with shared tales family misadventures under the flashing lights adorning Mom’s numerous Christmas trees. Laughter was highlighted with teary eyes; its sad when the only thing left of your parents is their left-behind material possessions and the genetics shared among siblings.
One of my favorite memories of Mom is her crocheted snowflakes. She worked on them all year, even when her aging hands had trouble holding the tiny hook and yarn. Mom always had a tree decorated with her handiwork in the living room; sporting nothing but dainty starched snowflakes, white pearl strands and clear flashing lights. That tree was the most beautiful of them all every year, I wish now I had taken the time to take pictures of it.

Actually, I wish I had taken more time to just be with Mom and Dad both. I guess when I was younger, I always thought that they’d be around. When they got older work and life limited the time available to spend with them and now they’re gone. No matter how many hours you spend with a loved one, it’s never enough.

So hug your parents and kids and loved ones today, right now. Tell them you love them, just as they are, not when they do better or want to do something that YOU want to do. Take the time to listen to them, you never know how long it will be before they’re gone; either passed away or moved to the other side of the country. Go on, do it before it’s too late like in the song: "You Don't Know What You've Got Till It’s Gone".

1 comment:

yellowdoggranny said...

someone should email this to my kids..ha...
i was thinking about all the stuff in my 'grandma's heart boxes' the other day..every scrap of paper from the kids granddaughters,, ceramics they either made or bought..i know when i croak they will toss it..but i sure as hell cant...i love the great are those...