I grew up in a modest brick ranch house built in the early 60’s that was purchased new by my family. For over 40 years very little was removed or changed. As other cherished family members passed on, my mom and dad collected sweet bits and pieces of their lives and added them to their own.
Little bits of beauty could be found in the yard…
…in the trees…
…growing in the garden…
…and boy oh boy…in the closets, tucked in chests and dressers, behind hutches, under the beds, in the garage…
… it was enough to make you…smile.
We stopped counting my mom’s collection of red hats she wore to her society meetings and just started wearing them.
Moments of joy and grief.
When the bed my parents snored in for years was dismantled, I too felt as if my heart was being taken apart.
It was a sad reminder that I had lost my compass…
…and my shining star.
But every night brothers, sisters, in laws and grandchildren sat down for dinner together. I could feel my mom’s presence and this made her REALLY happy.
Each of us selected a memory (or 50) to keep. However, the collection of 100+ dust catching carousel horses is still up for grabs. :)
The house will remain in the family, but it needed a fresh start. The gold Grecian Goddess wallpaper in the front bath had to go. My sisters had the hard job of scraping off 30+ year old heavily glued paper.
I only had to take down hardware.
Afterwards, the bathroom breathed a deep sigh of relief as new fixtures were installed, plumbing was updated and paint was selected. For those who will mourn her loss, a memento.
I went on and began redesigning the front room where you once couldn’t see an inch of clear wall space. Color will be added through art, paint, upholstery and china. Eventually all the rooms will get done.
Thomas Wolfe once said “You can’t go home again.” Luckily, I am a member of the Bon Jovi generation and was given the precious gift of working, eating and sleeping alongside my sibs.
Each family member is one small piece of fabric that has been stitched together by a common thread. While this makes for a truly crazy quilt, it is intricately beautiful in its own way.
From the bottom of my heart I want to thank each and every one of you for your lovely and inspiring comments and emails. My individual response button is currently buried under a mountain of laundry and boxed treasures but please know you are deeply appreciated.