Decorating My House With Memories
While I was decorating the house for Spring recently, the thought occurred to me that many of the objects I use evoke memories. That's what makes them special and why I put them on display. For instance, the unique flat glass vase that my husband's late Nana gifted to us. I had never seen such a piece and it is perfect for a single bloom...or for Easter egg picks as used here. Nana loved to give us things and would always say, "I think you can use this." I loved when she visited us, although she didn't like cats. She called our Morris,"the whosis," and was convinced during one trip that Morris had "stolen" her pocketbook! To this day, my husband and I laugh trying to picture Morris dragging along a pocketbook behind her!
It wouldn't be Easter without these baskets on the foyer table! I remember when my Mom and one of my sisters worked together on making these. They were going to sell them but I think they ended up giving most of their creations away, including these to me. They remind me of Easter baskets I was given as a child. Filled with chocolate bunnies and brightly colored jelly beans, the baskets were a treat for the eyes as much as the tummy! I don't get Easter baskets now and that's a bit of a bummer, actually. Sometimes, being a grown-up is not much fun!
A Spring door wreath brings much needed color to the foyer door. The wreath is actually an extra large size candle ring which makes a wonderful smaller wreath. The colors are so beautiful and, as always, my eye is drawn to the blue. I used blue as one of the main colors in my wedding 35 1/2 years ago. The royal blues of the bridesmaid and flower girl dresses were such a vivid contrast against the reds, whites and greens of the post Christmas colors. Our New Year's Day wedding presented a bold display of color against the bleakness of that 1983 winter.
I touch the fabrics of table coverings and am transported in memory to the people who created or gave them to me. The fringe edged napkin that is one of a pair used to hang over the edge of a Longaberger basket gifted to me by my former teaching assistant over 25 years ago. Sandy is a talented artist and created the wooden bunny as well. An able and efficient assistant, she helped me get through those first challenging years of teaching with humor and kindness. I wonder how she is doing? The extra large size crochet doily was hand-crafted by my mother many years ago. I do not remember seeing my mother crochet, so this was most likely made before I came along. I do remember my mother sewing, however. She made clothes for my sisters and doll clothes for my dolls as Christmas presents using scraps of old dresses. I know I had the best dressed Crissy doll ever! Knowing that her hands touched the delicate stitching of the doily makes me feel close to her on days when I am especially missing her. Her hands were as strong and determined as her spirit. They were hands that worked hard, loved sporting a pretty ring and felt cool on my forehead when I was sick. How I long for those hands on my forehead some days.
This white linen tablecloth, wrinkled and a bit stained from wear, has seen a lot of living, just like the woman who gave it to me. I first met Elma around 34 years ago when she came to volunteer at the preschool where I was teaching. Recently retired from secretarial work at a school in West Virginia, we instantly bonded over shared memories of a state we both missed and a longing for far away family. Our age difference made for more of a pseudo mother/daughter type friendship, yet we laughed and enjoyed meals and concerts together. Our get-togethers became few and far between after I left the preschool for a public school teaching job. Life gets in the way, sometimes. I was saddened when I heard of her passing a few years later. Still, her laughter remains in my heart and when I touch that tablecloth I can still see her smile.
Like the blooms on a Dogwood, my memories are fleeting as I move about the house adding touches here and there. Although I am physically alone, these objects are reminders that I am never truly alone. The love and memories associated with my decor bring warmth to my home and my heart and can never be lost, even though the objects may not always be with me.
Tell me, what memories does your decor bring?
Until Next Time,