So now that I am in Michigan and very close to my Grandmother I am trying to spend as much time with her as possible. She will be 92 years old this August. Her health has been deteriorating and she is so small and frail now. I am very sad to see her his way. She has always been so strong and independant.
My grandmother is a keeper of many things. Not a hoarder, but a keeper of life's momentos. Little things that you can pull out and feel the love contained in them. Feel the history behind each little item. Over the years she has given me some little things. I treasure them more than one would treasure a gold nugget. One of those things was a trunk that belonged to my Great Grandmother. It is an awesome thing. Not one that was kept in pristine condition but one that was used and loved. This is where I keep all those treasures she gives me and treasures I have added myself over the years.
I was visiting Grandma a couple of weeks ago. It is very snowy and icy here so she does not get out very much. She has been wanting a trunk to put some of her things in so my cousin took her shopping and she finally settled on one. So she was showing me how she fit some items in and then showed me boxes of stuff that did not fit. Then she opened said boxes to show me what was inside.
This is where I discovered my new mission. Inside those little boxes are the most wonderful treasures of all. These are not treasures you could necessarily take to "Antiques Road Show" and walk away knowing you hold a million dollar item in your hand. These were treasures that I love especially. She pulled out a short wooden spoon that was so well used it was smooth and almost black. She looks sentimentally at it and says my mother used this spoon almost every day to cook our meals. She pulls out a couple of other items describes who they are from, what they were for, and then gently places them back in her box. Finally she says I probably should just throw these things away. "I am the only one that knows what they are, no one else is probably interested." I had a faint heart attack followed by a panic attack. I am glad I was there. I quickly assured her that if no one else, I especially am interested and she had better never, ever, throw her things away.
So, starting next Monday, I will be spending every Monday and every other spare moment I have sitting with her with my camera and a notepad, documenting every little piece of my history. I can't imagine the things I will see and hear. I am also contemplating taking along a recorder of some sort because she always throws in a little bit of her life story. I don't want to forget a single word!