Posts Tagged ‘gift’


It’s that time again.

When colleges or universities attempt to somehow know the applicant a little better. With their prompt questions. If you were a tree what type of tree would you be?

Okay, maybe not that exactly.

But sometimes there are the questions like, “Which book impacted your life?”


I am thinking I might say, “All of them.”

If it were me  (and it’s not)  I would be ready to list all of the books that had some impact on my life.

Then I thought, “It’s not the books.”

It’s being able to read the books. Being able to read anything at all.

My mother-in-law, who is living with me at the moment, is ninety years old.

And illiterate.

She has raised literate and successful children. But she came from a place and time where the education of young women was an option for parents. And as we all know parents can sometimes be a crap shoot.

If you are reading this right now do you realize the gift you have?

You can read the street sign. The map. You do not have to rely on others for your menu choices at a restaurant. You are able to read the newspaper. Help your child with their homework. You are able to fill out the arrival information on your plane trip.

Imagine not being able to read.  For a second.

The folks at the college admissions might need to rethink their questions.

Maybe something like, “How has reading impacted your life?”

Forget the books.





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When I was young my parents didn’t go out that often. So we didn’t have a ton of babysitters. But they did need kid coverage at times. A Saturday night once in a while. Or when their work hours weren’t in sync. There was a period of time when Mom was working second shift at the hospital and Dad’s day shift wouldn’t end until 5:00pm.

Kathy DeMarco, our teenaged neighbor and family friend, would come over to sit with us. She had long, brown hair parted down the middle. I can still see her sitting on our couch in the parlor. She let me brush her hair. And I brushed it endlessly. Thought it was the best thing.

Eventually Kathy left home to get married. When she was clearing out her things she left some with me.

I often wonder why I have such vivid memories of some things but this morning’s breakfast or the doings of the previous week remain a chore to bring to mind.

One item Kathy gave me was her jewelry box. A big, pink toned leather piece with an inside mirror, two side compartments and one drawer. It also played music. I thought it was fabulous. So happy and grateful.

I still remember some of the contents. One was a pair of round, yellow tinted John Lennon type sunglasses.

There was also a necklace that had a miniature canister filled with tiny seeds. I thought they were drugs. I guess I had quite the imagination. I never asked anyone about it. Which is weird because I always asked a lot of questions. I just wondered silently and kept the contraband totally under wraps. Okay, I was seven years old!

The families are still friends. Kathy’s parents have since died and other folks reside in the house next door. But Kathy still lives in the same town as my parents. I was chatting the other day with her son and that memory just popped into my head. I shared it with him. I wanted him to know how much I appreciated his mother’s gifts. So he can share with her.

I now know the significance of mustard seeds in jewelry. It is to remind the wearer that what is very small can grow into something very big. 

Like an idea. Like a simple gesture. Like a wonderful memory.


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