Clearing out a house after death is a sacred act, yet no amount of holiness assigned to this task can dismiss the back-breaking, shoulder-aching, neck-craning job of sorting, recycling, and passing on to others the possessions of a loved one. Aside from clothing and furniture, Mother left behind the tools of her trade in the kitchen along with beloved books of our childhood, some of which are displayed here.

Prepare Food & Serve It

What remains: A scale on which all of our baby weights were noted and recorded (or ingredients for recipes measured), cooking utensils, ice cream dipper, and juicer, most of which have been passed on to grand-children.

Scale Mom

My best guess is that these were wedding gifts or first (and only) time purchases. I don’t remember another scale, a different set of utensils, a second ice cream dipper or juicer ever passing through the threshold of our home. The throw-away mentality of our current consumer society never made sense to Mother. “You buy good, and keep it – for a lifetime” was her philosophy! Yes, prepare food and serve it, and with love! Her fancy china set, sterling silver flatware, and crystal glasses and goblets all have found homes with her grandchildren.

Kitchen Utensils Mom

Daughter-in-law Sarah pleased with Grandma's ice cream scooper

Daughter-in-law Sarah pleased with Grandma’s ice cream scooper

Juicer Mom

Don’t Forget to Stir in Imagination

Page from Arnold and Ann Lobel's book

Illustration from On Market Street by Anita and Arnold Lobel

In previous Moments of Discovery, you may have seen other books from Mother’s bookcase or from the attic.

The book below, a reader, is certainly a keeper, recording media and methods that are becoming obsolete.

Pages from my text book

The Child-Story Reader, copyrights ranging from 1927-1936

And one of my favorites is My Bible Book with verses selected by Janie Walker and pictures by Dean Bryant (Rand McNally and Company, 1946). These words and pictures have been imprinted on my childhood memory as I joined the red-haired boy and blonde-headed girl roaming around gardens and romping through meadows with their pets. It was a perfect world!

My Bible Book_front cover

Aunt Ruthie gave me this book with penciled instructions to read it to my sister Janice, show her the pictures and tell her all about them.

My Bible Book_pre Title page w note_light text_7x8_300

 Ever the teacher, she closes with her sweet lead-in question: “Can you tell what each picture means?” This is probably a Christmas gift or birthday present given to me in 1948.

Puppy dogs, a frog, a snowman, a kite, some birds, squirrels, a herd of cows, and a even a special kitty cat amuse the children as the pages turn with words of wisdom all quoted from scripture.

My Bible Book_Be ye kind_p25-26_8x5_300

Do you have old books in your treasury of keepsakes? Some special utensils for cooking or serving passed down to you from a generation or two ago? We’re all ears!

Coming next: Button, Button, Who’s Got the Button?