06 August, 2011

Ode to hand-me-downs

This summer my parents marked the 28th anniversary of their wedding. I have poured over their wedding photos countless times, taking such delight in the wide smiles on their young faces. I look at their photos knowing much more of their story than they could have imagined on that day.

I had volunteered to make a cake for the big celebration. I packed up all the ingredients and headed up to my parents' house, completely forgetting to bring the behemoth KitchenAid standing mixer - a non-essential, yes, but it certainly makes life easier for this impatient girl. Thus, arriving in my mom's kitchen, I pulled out her little tan and brown hand mixer. I should see what these things are going for on Ebay, because this mixer definitely qualifies as "vintage" by now; it was a wedding present to my mom and has been well-used over the years. I remember using it to make chocolate-chip cookies with my mom as a little girl, impatiently waiting to lick the batter off of the dough hooks (which is more fun than eating the finished cookie, as 8 out of 8 kids will agree). I opened one of the dish cabinets and pulled out another relic, a metal mixing bowl that was given to my parents for their wedding. It bears scratches from many years of mixing, stirring, serving, etc. It has held salad, popcorn, cookie dough, bread dough, and may or may not have also proven to be an excellent swimming pool for toy soldiers and plastic sharks. The mixer and the bowl were once as fresh and new as my parents' marriage, and they are still here serving us well and enabling us to celebrate another year. A few more dents and scratches in us, but we're all still here.

Maybe being one of eight homeschooled kids pre-disposes me to appreciating hand-me-downs, but I do so appreciate the objects that stay with us through so much of our stories. I love having things that have played a role -- even the very ordinary role of mixing or serving -- in the lives of the people I love, the people who handed life to me. ...Except denim jumpers. Denim jumpers can stay gone. :-)

1 comment:

carrie said...

"A few more dents and scratches in us, but we're all still here." I love that.