What’s a Treasure Chest of Memories?

Treasure Chest of Memories

A box full of photos and memorabilia is one type of Treasure Chest of Memories

You may have noticed that at the end of many of my posts, I refer you to my memory-sharing site, TreasureChestofMemories.com. I figure the time has come to tell you the rest of the story.

The original Treasure Chest of Memories

My passion for telling stories stems from a gift left by my grandmother. Shortly before her death, Hazel Crymes passed on an old spiral notebook filled with a lifetime of memories, which she dubbed her “Treasure Chest of Memories.” Her writings included childhood memories, stories of her children as they grew, good recipes, and wisdom she had gathered along the way. Continue reading

Interspecies Attractions and My Failure to Read Social Cues

Take me to a cocktail party and I’m hyper alert to social cues. Eyes wandering? I assume you’d rather be talking to someone else. Lack of enthusiastic nodding? Your interest has waned; time to shut-up, Laura. I won’t even go into the looking at my chest, or worse—your focus is slightly off my eyes. Did I grow a zit on my forehead?

Obsess much? Oh yeah!

However, when it comes to the animal kingdom, I forget all that self-consciousness in my desire to connect interspecially. (No, that’s not a spelling error. It’s a made up word.)

Just this week I had two significant reptilian contacts.

Monday evening, my husband reported a turtle crossing the driveway. I grabbed the camera and took off to find an attractive red slider moving at break-neck (turtle) speed. My hands-off policy failed when I saw something attached to her (or his, I really don’t know how to tell with turtles. You know, the shell and all that…) back.

Gently stopping her resulted in her peeing her body weight, which was a pretty significant social cue that my affection for her wasn’t going to be returned. On closer inspection, the “something” turned out to be a leech. With hubby’s “help” (If you consider standing to the side saying “Ewww,” “Maybe you should put salt on it,” and “be sure to wash your hands, honey”), I removed the leech by rubbing it off with a small twig.

Neither the turtle nor the leech was appreciative.

Red Slider Turtle

Not BFF’s. Not even close!

Later that evening, while I was attempting to dig a cattail out of the pond, a frog jumped out and landed in the grass a foot away from me. I should have been content to simply admire him. (Again, I really don’t know how to tell frogs’ gender either, unless they’re actively mating, in which case I assume the one on top is the male.) He made the mistake of making eye contact.

In my defense, there was a slight gloat to his demeanor. “Lucky mah dirty ass is camouflaged. Stupid human eyes can’t peep me up in tha grass!” (Credit: Pond lingo courtesy of Gizoogle.net) I replied—yes out loud, but don’t tell anyone, “I can see you, you know.”

His little froggy smirk continued. “No, you can’t. No, you can’t. I’m just one foot away, and you can’t peep me.” After I gave him the gentlest of touches on his little froggy head, he sprung away.

Pond Frog

Not interested in human contact…

Spurned again.

I’m pretty certain I heard a “biotch!” as he left.

© Laura Hedgecock 2013

Tied in Knots

There’s a display of a Yakama time ball at the Simthsonian Native American Museum in Washington, D.C.   It ‘s a tradtion of the Yakama people that the rest of us could well learn from.

The twine in the ball represents life and the ball  itself represents a lifestory. Like life, it’s not perfectly spooled.  Like life, it’s got a few knots in it.   It’s not a story mean for others to interpret.  It’s a life story for a woman to savor or share.

The Yakama, rather than trying to mask the knots of life,  preserve or celebrate  the memory of those knots (i.e., events) with a bead.   Some of the knots represent happy events, such as a marriage or birth of a child.  Others represent a times of hurt, grieving, or personal growth.

If you think about it, we too should celebrate life’s knots.  Rather than sweeping the less than pretty, less than perfect times under the rug, we should preserve those memories, even share them with the other women in our lives.

That way, a life story, like a  time ball,  wouldn’t  have to look pretty to be beautiful.