Wednesday, April 18, 2012

A Weekend to Remember

Mom died. Now we have to disperse or sell all her treasures. She loved and collected anything-vintage…furniture, all types of wood pieces, and all types of glass, and silver just to name a few. For Mom, it wasn’t so much about having the things as it was about the challenge of the hunt. She loved to find what no one else could and then talk the seller down to nothing. Mom would go into a flea-invested barn herself to pick up her latest bargain. And sometimes, us kids got drafted into helping her move this ‘treasure’ for an enjoyable treat.  When she got it home, Mom would refinish it with love and display it proudly. Then she would delight in telling others about her latest ‘find’ adventure.

Together, my two brothers and I viewed the boxes piled up in each storage room along with the antique furniture. None of the three of us could see ourselves taking much because while Mom always had a large home, we have more modest homes. With that consideration in mind, we pulled up Mom’s white plastic porch ware and decided to have fun with the whole decision-making process.  Like I said, none of us really needed any of the things set before us. However, each of us did want a piece of our past and a memory of Mom.

Paper ended up going everywhere as pieces of Mom’s life were displayed before us. If two or even three of us wanted the same thing, we rolled the dice for it. Highest roller won. I can’t say I was not disappointed with some of the outcomes but it was the only fair way. Mom always said, if we started to fight over her stuff, it was to be sold immediately with no more questions asked...period.

By the time my brothers and I were finished going through everything, we were at peace. We had told many stories about Mom and her escapades which made us laugh once more. We had also told a lot of stories on ourselves growing up which caused some laughter too. Then, at the closing of the last box, I can honestly said my family was still a family and united for the future. And to me...remaining a family is what really mattered the most.

This is what I learned:

1.    Your life can change forever with a single phone call.

2.    Family relationships can be stronger then they ever were, if all set their hearts to make it possible. The boxes said “United” on the sides. Even after many years of differences between us, Mom and her things were beckoning us to stand united at the end of the day.

3.    Accumulation of possessions is fleeting. Some things we buy as ‘investments’ for later may not become the big investments we were planning on at our death. When our kin are ready to sell, it is only worth what another will pay. There are so many variables that can push the price up or down. So…when you make purchases, choose wisely so what is purchased can be enjoyed with those you love now while you are here. Then ‘if’ you can sell it for the profit later, that is always a nice bonus.

4.    Some day you WILL be at the top of the family ladder. These things in the storage rooms were representations of memories from my childhood.  Family pieces handed down...ruby glass, a silver service, sandwich plates with rings for punch cups and pictures of an era now gone.  Cherish the journey because it is all too soon gone.

Mom… it will be a year on the 23rd of April since your passing on into God’s glory. We miss you down here but I know you are at peace now. Thanks for all you did for us and the lasting memories we cherish.

And Mom...     I love you!


  1. It is a sweet thing to be reminded that a person can leave behind so much more than items... they leave love that can glue a family together. Thank you for sharing this. God bless you as you step into another step at a time. Keep collecting treasure of the heart, Mary Jane. It is so worth the time.

  2. Thanks Mary...I do have a special family and I love them deary.

  3. Loved your story and the hope it brings to other disjointed families. Blessings on you, Mary Jane.

  4. Thanks Cathy....and for all your help! Blessings!