Wednesday, September 17, 2008

A Journey Back Via The Laundry Basket

The last couple weeks I've been busy trying to catch up with laundry before the seasonal weather change. While I did have some catching up to do with our normal daily laundry, due to being without a washer for a bit, I also was working on bedding, so we'd have plenty of clean, fresh, aromatic sheets, blankets, etc. to snuggle in this winter, when I won't be able to use the outside line so much. I've also been going through clothing I've had in storage, some of it for years, that I am finally able to slink into again after so many years.

In the process of getting all those extras clean, I've managed to become a bit overwhelmed with my new abundance of clothing. My closet is crammed full. All my hangers, including the two bundles I recently purchased at the thrift store are being utilized, and I have more clothing that needs a home. What to do?

Cooler, damper weather has arrived, so I'm not doing any laundry for at least a couple days. That frees me up to accomplish some other goals. At the top of my chore list for today is heading out to the shop where I'll head directly to a dresser I've been meaning to get to for some time now. I will then set to going through the drawers, removing all those non-clothing related items we currently have stored in the drawers. Then I'll get it all cleaned up and enlist the help of Pa to bring it in. I'm guessing it will take all of 15 minutes to fill it up again, only this time it will be with items you would normally expect to find in such a piece of furniture.

I'm looking forward to bringing the old dresser in for a couple reasons. The first reason would be the most obvious, I need somewhere to store all my clothing, and free up some closet space (not to mention regaining the use of some hangers). Secondly, I have many fond memories of this particular dresser.

As a child, I was blessed to be able to enjoy many special times at my Grandparent's house. There were Saturday afternoons, Sundays after church, weekday afternoons after school, and of course many fun filled summer days. There were also sleepovers. I remember the comforting tick-tock sounds the clock made, as well as the hourly cuckoo as the figure emerged from it's hiding place to announce the hour. I remember Grandma being concerned the hourly "cuckoo" would keep us awake. It didn't bother me any though. I rather liked it.

There were the sights, sounds, and smells from the kitchen. Grandma loved to cook and bake. Her macaroni and cheese was the best! I've never managed to duplicate it. I've decided it must've been the cheese she got, delivered from the man in the big white truck, into the white box on her front porch. Her shrimp salad was also the best, and, again, although I assisted her many times, I just can't seem to duplicate it today. Grandma's cookie jar was always full, and it always contained a slice of bread to keep the cookies soft, just the way we liked them.

I also remember spending time in my Grandma's bedroom, and wondering at everything about it, from the bed, to the closet, to the furniture. I loved to sit on the cushioned stool in front of the dressing table with it's huge beautiful mirror. There was something about Grandma's house, and her bedroom in particular that seemed almost magical. My imagination could take flight there. I was a princess, a heroine, a beautiful maiden with flowing blonde hair, on a handsome white horse.....Or, I was just me, in a safe, comfortable place, just one room away from my Grandma's smiles and hugs.

After Grandma passed away, my sister and I were offered our pick of several items. One thing that was destined for Goodwill if not chosen was Grandma's bedroom set. I couldn't bear to think of all those memories just going away, always wondering what may have become of them, so I jumped at the chance.

After so many years, and multiple moves, the bedroom set is still with me, and after today, I will once again be able to gaze upon one piece, the dresser, every morning, every evening, and every time thoughout the day I happen to venture through the bedroom. I'm looking forward to revisiting the memories. I'm also looking forward to the day I will be able to bring the dressing table in, and gaze into the mirror once again. Perhaps, if I close my eyes, and think hard enough, I will be able to remember the image I saw staring back at me so long ago, and the feelings that went with sitting on that stool, in Grandma's magical bedroom.


HDMac said...

What wonderful memories of your grandmother! What a sweet tribute to her and yes, how much it must mean to have these things to remember her by! :) Thanks for sharing that, Connie, it was really special!

Dorothy said...

Oh I love this story..of course I'm prejudice to grandma memories.. and you just shared some lovely ones. I'm hoping my seven grandchildren remember me someday...(many years from now..38 more at least) with the same emotions.

Thanks boondock ma...I love your stories and thoughts...

Dorothy from grammology

Alexandra said...

Oh I love this post! I have some similar memories of my grandmother's house out in the country in SE Pa. They also had a magical clock; I can still remember those chimes on the hour.