This weekend a box that my parents and my sister packed with birthday goodies arrived from my hometown of Independence, Mo.
On top covered with wax paper were two plastic bags full of Rice Krispie Treats, something my dad likes to send me on occasion and a snack we adored when I was a kid. Also, there were two containers of unsalted peanuts, another of my favorite snacks, and then a glass mug from the beloved Tiffany's Attic dinner theater that once stood on Kansas City's Main Street.
When I was a kid, going to the dinner theater was a fancy occasion that we anticipated with excitement, especially if the show featured the Vaudeville performer Billie Bird. For all these years, my mom has saved this mug from one of those special family outings, and then sent it to me. It's printed with the face of the zany character actress we saw onstage in shows like "Arsenic and Old Lace" and "Busybody." We'd get so tickled by her craziness that we could hardly catch our breath during the show, and giggled for days recounting her silly antics.
Also in my box was an old loomed potholder. We used to make these when we were kids, but I don't know whether this is one we actually made, or one that Mom has collected over the years. Along with the book, Strengths Finder 2.0, my sister Cheryl added a special card she made from a family photo. Pictured next to me on the left is my Grandma Williams, Mom and Cheryl, holding her dog Gypsy. My Aunt Lorene, who we used to call Snowball, in the pink dress in the center aside Dad.
It was 1986 -- the summer I returned from my studies at the University of Bordeaux, France, we made a family trip to see my Grandma Williams in Mulberry, Ark. Note the 1980s hair that I had tons of, just like my Grandma. Now Grandma, Snowball and Gypsy have all long passed. And the rest of us look a little older -- or mature, I should say -- except for Dad, who seems to have barely aged over the past 23 years and still has a head full of barely grayed hair!
This old photo brought back memories like it was yesterday....the sticky, humid air blowing out of Grandma's water cooler, my grandfather's old 1977 Chevrolet Impala, the framed, light-up print of Jesus above the living room sofa, Grandma's just-done hair-do, the bright red-carpeting in her guest bedroom and the smell of beans on the stove and cornbread in the oven.
I couldn't have received a better box of treasures -- a true offering of cherished memories on which no one can place a price tag.
Always Frugal, Always Fabulous!
The Elegant Thrifter