I'm not an overly sentimental person. No. That sounds wrong. Maybe I am. I certainly place a lot of sentiment on things someone has thoughtfully given me and remember the smallest little things someone may have done for me. And I nearly always keep cards, letters and notes. I just am not one to keep little tiny souvenirs, etc. Even still, there were a number of things I could have used for this section on the list. Some of them were more readily at hand (the ones I chose) and others would have taken more unearthing.
Not only do I love the simple necklace's look, but how could you not feel sentimental about a locket -- already filled with pictures of your precious ones? I do need to update it (as it contains only the three children who were a part of our family at the time Mike gave it to me). I'd like to put all my kids plus my husband. I just haven't tried to figure how to print such tiny pictures -- and Mike seems to have forgotten how he did it originally. I've worn this necklace a lot over the years, and it has spent a good deal of time entertaining the various toddlers who have sat on my lap opening and shutting it during many a sacrament meeting.
Next up -- this fleece sweatshirt:I've owned it for, let's see . . . nearly twelve years now! It don't know that it is current in fashion and it is certainly worn and stretched, but its sentiment is such that I can never part with it. It was a gift from Mike when we were dating. My sister worked at the Gap at the time, and I'd been there shopping during their "Friends and Family" discount day. I'd loved the sweatshirt but hadn't purchased it because it seemed a bit too expensive (even with the 30% discount). I don't recall how Mike knew I wanted it -- if we'd seen it one time shopping together or if I'd told him I'd sort of wanted to buy it but opted not to. All I know is that soon afterwards, he showed up with it as a gift for me. (And, imagine this, after seeing me typing this post, Mike happened to unearth the VERY receipt showing his purchase of this sweatshirt. Well, we can't very well throw that away now either, can we!)
Last thing for #12 -- This blanket that sits folded at the foot of my bed:
Originally, this was a totally different blanket -- composed of bright orange material on one side and big colorful patchwork squares on the other side. There were two of them (I don't know what's become of the other). My mom had made them for my older sisters' beds. Later, when they had become the blankets on the beds of two of us younger girls, the patchwork side was so frayed that a new blue checked back was added. (As seen in the above picture), but the colorful squares weren't totally forgotten. If I lifted the blanket towards the light of my bedroom window, I could see their remnants through the orange side. By the time I was in middle school, the orange side was so beat up that my mom took me to choose a sheet -- I remember that shopping trip with just the two of us and how excited I was to choose what I wanted and how ingenious I thought it was to use a sheet for the new side (I chose the lovely flower pattern you now see). We tied and sewed that on over the orange. We must have cut the orange off pretty well because none of it is visible, but through the now rather thin and worn checked side, you can still see the old colorful squares. I love this blanket. Not only because I slept with it so much of my growing up, but it reminds me of my mom and of her efforts to re-use and be thrifty to care for her eleven children.
13. The oldest thing you own:
To be honest, I'm not actually sure which of my possessions has the most years on it. It may be that something I have is much older than the two things I thought of here, but I don't know. I just thought of these items because they belonged to my grandma and so, must have been around for awhile anyway. They later became mine. My grandma loved jewelry and one Christmas let my sisters and I choose something from her jewelry drawer. I don't know that it's worth anything monetarily speaking, but I think it's pretty cool looking. The radio was something I got to keep from her house after she'd passed away. I just use it for a decoration, but it was a functioning radio at one point.
14. Something you are good at:
14. Something you are good at:
I used to lament the fact that I didn't have any obviously recognizable (at least to me) talents -- nothing I could readily display or perform. Even now, I will catch myself singing along to a song in the car and, just for a minute, imagining how impressive it would be if it were ME singing that song. I know, that's a nerdy thing to admit, but I would love to play an instrument incredibly well or be able to dance or sing or even ski amazingly; and wouldn't that be a fun way to answer number 14? By writing about my having played violin for the New York Philharmonic, or about being asked to sing at wedding receptions? Yes, that would be fun -- even if I could only a little bit do any of those things.
Still, as I've grown older, I have become more grateful for (and better at recognizing) the talents I do have. Some of them I didn't know I had because I'd never had a need for them until later life experiences called upon them; others, I simply had -- ungratefully -- never considered to be talents. For example, I still remember about five years ago when my sister Shannon said something to me about my having a "talent" for keeping things clean. At the time, thinking of talents more as the earlier things I'd mentioned, I scoffed and laughed, "Oh yah. Some talent. Psh." Since then however, and with the addition of more children to my home, I have come to appreciate that maybe that is something of a talent. Don't get me wrong. My house isn't sparkly clean and, at any given moment, there are several areas I would prefer remain unseen, but I do seem to be able to keep things fairly tidy. So, it is more things like that that I have started to try and view as my gifts or talents - the things that aren't maybe as deserving of an audience, but that are a skill all the same. I can't think of any more at this very moment to type, but you get the idea.