Lately I've been dreaming of my mother a lot. I think about her often during the day as it is, because everything in our Little Red House carries memories from my childhood. It is also her voice I hear when I'm about to do something I ought to think better of. She is my conscience, as I'm sure your mothers are for you, too.
The dreams, though, are real in an almost frightening way. She will walk into the dining room, and tell me that she loves my new German transferware plate. She will be seated in her favorite chair in the den, chiding me for the dust kitties under the TV. She will be standing at her old stove in the kitchen, making meatballs, or fried cakes, or stuffed artichokes. A part of me in the dream knows that this is not possible but, just as surely, another part of me is comforted by her presence.
As a child, I was a strange mixture of tomboy and princess. I was an only child, and my parents had me quite late in life, so I think at times they just weren't sure what to make of me. I loved to read; they had to kick me outside to play when I had a good book. I loved Saturday mornings -- going to the feed store with my father, the lovely smell of grain filling our nostrils; or bringing our trash to the dump, where my father would inevitably find some lost treasure to bring home.
But I also could spend hours rearranging furniture with my mother, or playing with her jewelry box. Here are a few vintage pieces from her costume jewelry -- none precious but every one priceless to me for the memories they evoke.