On small strips of paper she wrote in the briefest forms memories of her childhood. Often it was a single simple sentence but it evoked monumental memories. Nostalgia, humor, melancholy, wistfulness and joy were given birth by reflecting on her childhood memories. It is amazing what she has recalled. Many of them related to things we had long since forgotten but of which we reveled to be reminded.
She warned us there were no negative memories. That was a relief. That in itself said something good about her ability to bury the bad and relive the good.
Most of the 365 strips were less than half and inch wide and six inches long. They were in an attractive metal box which we keep near our breakfast table. We take out one a day and let our minds marinate in her memory.
This is truly a gift that keeps on giving. After we have worked through the year we doubtless will start over again next year.
A few examples of the simplicity will likely mean nothing to the average reader. Having been involved in them personally they are valuable to us. Your own experience will come alive with aggrandized thought stimulated by a simple statement. Example:
"New white patent leather shoes."
This enabled us to expand on the thought and momentarily relive a most delight Easter when she so proudly wore her new white patent leather shoes and in her childish way showed them off to anyone possible.
A lot of long time Cobb residents can relate to this one.
"Aunt Fanny's Cabin: fried chicken, squash casserole, turnip greens and biscuits with jelly." That period restaurant offered southern cooking at its best. Pongo Pool, the proprietor added life to every dining experience.
This one elicits reflective thought to which even the oldest of us can relate. "Raking that front yard! Then, making big piles of leaves and jumping in them, only to get to rake them some more."
Those experiences are childish and that is what makes the project worth the effort. What did you bring with you from your childhood? Every person has a story to tell. Don't think it is uninteresting and unimportant. It is to those who shared life with you. You will be amazed how valued your gift of a memory box will be. Start it today. It truly is one of the best gifts you can give.
As a recipient of this simple but significant gift of daily reflections I can assure you any parents will love for their child to give them such a gift. Do it.
As an aside there is a worthwhile project for older adults also. Write your life story for your children. Remember they haven't always been with you and would delight to know of your childhood and life's pilgrimage.
The Rev. Dr. Nelson Price is pastor emeritus of Roswell Street Baptist Church. Contact Price at email@example.com.