I have at least 2 big Rubbermaid containers full of notes, cards, and small objects that I've kept over the years. I've been meaning to go through them and get rid of anything I don't really need to hang onto - but the task seems a little overwhelming...
So, I thought, with this exercise I would take it slow, starting today. I'll take out 10 objects, look at them, remember their meaning, record my memories here, and do another 10 next Thursday.
So welcome to my past - this should be a funny and interesting ride for sure! (I'll post pictures of the unusual things, too!) Here we go!
Pocket Pal Harmonica: I was in Women's Concert Chorale all through high school, with a wonderful choir director, Ms. Kanthak. Loved her! After our last choir concert, she called all the seniors on stage and handed each one of us a harmonica - a reminder that life is fun and silly at times, and that music can follow us wherever we go! (I've never learned to play the harmonica, but it's a lovely reminder of happy times, and whimsical fun!)
A piece of wood, whittled, with my name carved into it: When I was in elementary school, in Newark, Ohio, my grandparents would come visit and often my Grandpa would come meet me at the bus stop after school. I'm pretty sure, on one visit, he handed me this piece of wood when I got off the bus. He must have been sitting on my front porch that day, lost in thought, and working on this with his pocket knife - as he did a lot. It's a cool thing, to think of my Grandpa thinking of me - and waiting for me to get home - so he could spend time with me!
A "Heart of Ohio Girl Scout Day Camp - Art Appreciation" badge: Ahhh... the days of day camp! I remember going to the Arboretum near where we lived in Ohio and spending the days learning about nature, cooking meals over campfires, making crafts, and singing songs. I still have a God's Eye somewhere that I made that week! (I didn't remember getting a badge for art, though!)
A "Monical's Pizza PAPA (People and Performance Award)" pin: For a year and a half, I worked as a waitress at Monical's Pizza in Kankakee, IL. I knew we wouldn't be living there long, so I didn't want a job I would get attached to, and we had a friend that was a manager at the restaurant... I took the job - and actually liked it! I liked the people I worked with, and I loved many of our customers. I enjoyed be good at the customer service end, but also in making the kitchen and wait-centers more efficient and better at service. I was good at it - and people recognized that. I won a couple of small awards while working there. Kind of fun...
Our wedding program: Nov. 1, 2003. "Where there is love, there are always miracles." The names of everyone involved in the ceremony, the music, the readings, a blessing from our families, 'thank you's to all who made the day special, a list of loved ones we were thinking about that day, and instructions for the sparklers that would light our way as we left the church that night! A wonderful day to be remembered... Wonderful.
Kelly's Little College Instruction Book: When I graduated high school, our youth director, Kelly, gave each of us graduates a book of funny and wise advice for life after high school. Some examples: "Get up early - Mom will not be waking you up anymore!" "Do not order pizza after 6pm." (Hmmm... I didn't follow that one!) "Stay away from casseroles in the cafeteria." "Eat breakfast." "Volunteer." "Take risks."
Pictures of our dog when we first brought her home: My first puppy as an adult, only 7 weeks old, in our first (rented) house with a yard. So fun. The picture quality is poor... But still so fun to have these!
A picture from "Prairie Fest": A retreat I helped lead my junior year of high school. It brought junior high kids together from our school district and spent a weekend teaching about good , healthy choices, team-building, and realizing that everyone has a story and everyone has baggage in their lives - and that's why we need to love and respect everyone, because we never know what they're going through... It was an emotional and wonderful weekend! (The picture is of one of our advisor's, Gay, me, Teddy M.(who I had a major crush on), and Amanda B.
A few report cards: Hmmm... Not terribly interesting... Struggling in math, great in science, english, and choir. Fun to remember the teachers - I had a lot of good ones!
And last, but certainly NOT least...
My "chin-a-gins" body:My core group of girlfriends in junior high and high school did the "Chinagins" in the school and church talent shows (we, apparently, didn't have any REAL talents!). We lip-synced to the song "Lollipop" - very funny! (And yes - this photo-shoot was self-shot, just for you! The pics on Google didn't do this justice! The things I do for this blog....!)
So there ya go - my first 10 "excavations." Now, I'm curious what we'll find next week!
Things I am thankful for today:
2. Teachers who inspired and cared.
3. My Grandpa. I'll always remember his hands.
4. The joy of a puppy!
6. Taking the time to hold, remember, and tell the stories.
7. Open Sanctuary tonight - praying deeply for a new friend.
8. A new study group with some amazing women - we're all on the journey together, and it's fun to share the ways we learn and see our faith!
9. A whole morning with Em and Fin!
10. Em and Fin visiting me at work. A lovely time showing them where I go everyday, and a place that is such a huge part of my life!