FOLK Magazine 2013 Journal Challenge

Cherished Inheritance

on February 4 | in 2013 FOLK Journal Agenda | by | with 13 Comments

FOLK Magazine 2013 Journal Challenge

Writing in a journal allows us to reflect on who we are, what we believe and what is important to us. With the FOLK Community Journal Challenge we hope you are doing just that, learning about yourself and others. If you are a blogger, join us by answering our journal prompt each week on your own blog and linking up to our community journal post on Monday’s. If you are not a blogger, why not start a blog today? We’re here to help get things rolling for you by providing you with writing prompts and a community to read your posts and grow your blog traffic. It’s a win/win situation! The journal agenda for the year can be found HERE and the prompt for this week is as follows:

What family memento do you cherish? Why?

I’m not your normal sentimental person. When it comes to the mementos of loved ones passed on that I want to keep, I pick the weird things and I am okay with that. When my Grandfather passed away I wanted nothing more than his old, rusty metal tool box. I cherish that tool box because he cherished that tool box.

Mechanics were his thing and there wasn’t a day of his life that didn’t involve him ‘tinkering’ in his workshop. Dimly lit, his workshop was built out of scraps of wood and sheet metal that he had left over from various jobs he had completed throughout the years. A single light bulb hung from an open socket in the center of each of the four rooms. His workshop was a mess in my eyes, but he knew exactly where everything was and was adamant that he would someday need everything in there for something. I learned my hoarding traits from him. “You better not get rid of that, ya never know when you’ll need it.”

I can remember sitting in the front room (I wasn’t allowed in the back three rooms where the saws, motors and chemicals were) at his large metal work bench, swinging my legs back and forth from the miss-matched metal stool. We were building a rabbit house that day. It was early Spring and the dirt floor of his workshop was still cold. We had been sitting on his front porch that morning when we saw the baby rabbits in the hedge at the corner of the yard. The week before he had built a birdhouse and had just shown me the nest full of robin eggs. From then and there I had it in my little mind that all baby animals needed a house. He didn’t even bother trying to explain to me that the hedge WAS their house. Instead, he grabbed my hand and led me out back to his workshop.

I sat on the metal bench and watched him carefully for what seemed like hours at the time. He sketched, measured and sawed. Then, he walked over to that big metal toolbox and rummaged around until he found just what he had been looking for, a miniature hammer. It was a ‘my size’ hammer if I ever saw one! Literally, a third of the size of his with a rubber mallet. It was like it was made for my preschool self. He taught me how to drill and hammer and before I knew it we were done. It was just a wooden box with  a little round hole in the front. Definitely nothing special. We painted it pink though and filled the inside with straw, alfalfa and carrots before placing it in the hedge line.

The ‘rabbit house’ is no longer there. I assume it deteriorated over the years. Either that, or I just cant remember where we actually put it. I’m too scared to actually stick my hand back into the hedge… but I haven’t seen even the slightest corner of that box in years. That day and the miniature hammer producing, rusty metal toolbox will be forever engraved into my memory. I cherish that tool box because he cherished that tool box. He spent his life working from it and it was the tool box he called on each time he came to an obstacle in his mechanical career.

What family memento do you cherish? Why?

Share with us a cherished family memento on your own blog and link up below. Be sure to mention in your post that you are linking up to the 2013 FOLK Journal Challenge and be sure to grab the journal challenge image at the top of this post. For a list of future, weekly writing prompts visit the 2013 FOLK Journaling Agenda.

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13 Responses to Cherished Inheritance

  1. Lucy says:

    I cherish the memories I have of my family, particularly my grandmother (I called her Bubbie). We used to have SO much fun together; she always said that I was “#1″. I was the first born grandchild, the first girl, and I enjoyed all of the “perks” that came along with that status. Bubbie and I used to get into all KINDS of trouble together: she taught me how to drive, bought my first dress for a high school dance, talked to me in the middle of the night when I wanted to switch colleges…Bubbie was truly my best friend. I cherish the intangible memento of my memories of her.

    • Gail Plaskiewicz says:

      That sounds beautiful what you have with your Bubbie. My grandmother died in the early 60′s. I was 8. I’m now 58. I remember parts of spending time with her but not a lot. She was an amazing Italian cook who came over legally through Ellis Island. I loved her so much and still miss her. Her meatballs and pasta and sauce was amazing! Every Sun. we would go visit my grandparents for dinner. We always had homemade pasta and chicken. 2 separate dishes but pasta and chicken every Sun. You would think I would hate both dishes but I don’t. It was so much fun to go over there and watch her cook. They never let me cook with her and wish I could have. I know I could have learned a lot from her.

      • Lucy says:

        Gail, that is so sweet! I was lucky enough to have Bubbie with me until I was 30; she passed in June 2011 from Ovarian cancer. I know that I am one of the fortunate few to have had my grandparents in my life for so long!

      • Gail, I hate that you never got to cook with your Grandmother. I am glad that you have such fond memories of family dinners and the dishes she made though. My Grandmother always made chicken and dumplings and would make a special pot for me without chicken. I’m not a chicken fan. Oh, what I would give to have learned how to make her dumplings. I have tried and tried and it’s just not the same. Someday I’ll figure out the secret, someday!

    • Lucy, I love hearing about your Bubbie. Looking at her pictures, she reminds me so much of you. You can definitely tell she had a big part in determining the woman you became.

  2. Whitney Sigler says:

    My cherish memories of my dad, he passes away at 62 years old. Well I have all his fishing gear. He use to take all 4 of us kids fishing. Not just weekends. Whenever he had the time and the might before we would go out in our yard and pick night crawlers. Omg I loved that. So when he passed my mother gave me a lot of it. My husband uses it and our three children. I have the flies that He tied in a des play case hanging. I have so many memories of fishing trips. When one of use fell in the water, my sister not wanting to bait her hook. Oh it goes on.

    The other I have is of my mother. She resides on a care facility. She has Alzheimer’s Early stages. Well she was a fantastic cook. I have all her hand written recipe cards. The homemade rolls, fudge, tomatoe sauce, baked chicken. Oh directions of how to can jelly and more. Some of them were used so much that they have food spilled on them. I just love her so. She’s such a sweet lady.

    Thanks for your time


    • So many sweet memories Whitney! Thanks for sharing! I feel for you and the situation with your mother. My Grandmother is in advanced stages of Alzheimer’s right now. It was progressive and it was almost as if it changed over night. She’s still in there though, somewhere. Every now and then I catch a glimmer in her eye or she will squeeze a little tighter when you give her a hug and you just know. Praying for a cure for it… SOON! Spend as much time as you can with her in the early stages. You never really realize how bad it gets until one day you just realize you’re not dealing with the early stages any more. It hits you and it hits you hard. :(

  3. Robin Newman says:

    I will always forever be gratful for the events of this past month, I received a phone call from my fathers nephew from Wolcott Arkasas.He is 77 years old and was calling to tell me of the impending death of my fathers last sibling.I have had no contact with these people since I was 7years old and now Iam57. Iwent for the funreal and was treated amazing by my cousins who I had spent a lifetime longing for, I visited the family farm, went to the cemetery where all my family is buried.My father had left home to go to the service and married an East Tn.girl and never returned back to that farm lfolive.They showed me lots of photos and of my father and told great stories of Christmases in the long gone farm house. The answers to all my questions came together that day.Just like my very own version of “Who Do You Think You Are”.Now I Know!

    • This is an amazing story and I am so glad that you shared. What a great experience! There’s nothing quite like family, even when you don’t know them that well. The connection and common thread between siblings/cousins/etc. is irreplaceable.

  4. May says:

    Wise, wonderful grandparents are one of life’s greatest gifts. I hope to be that for someone special one day.

  5. Solange says:

    I sometimes joke that my family’s past has been erased…… It’s really not funny. My parents came to this country escaping communism. They left behind all their belongings and many relatives. Eventually the government toke their homes away and anything left for us to visit. I do not have heirlooms nor a grandmothers pie recipe. All I know are my parents and their siblings. We now start over with new memories and traditions. I see my friends whose grandparents pass down their wisdom recipes furniture jewelry skills and traditions and I only hope they are grateful.

  6. Celicia says:

    I LOVE reading all of these amazing blogs! Sentimental, Thought Provoking and Funny! Thanks Folk for such a great prompt!

  7. [...] it’s time for another 2013 FOLK Journal Challenge prompt.  Here’s the question to [...]

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