Fantastical Treasures

I remember cinnamon toast, with the crusts cut away and cut into triangles — tiny, because once the crust is cut off, you aren’t really left with much. And there was so much butter on the toast that the cinnamon-sugar mixture kind of melted into it. I remember the color coral and lots of lipstick and makeup and when I close my eyes and think really hard, I can smell her perfume exactly as it was. There was the gold Mercedes and the brown carseat, the 2 not really going together, but it was always such a treat when we were allowed to ride in her convertible with her. Her bed was so comfortable and always smelled so good — just like her. She had shoes for days. She received 17 million catalogs and if we ever circled anything we wanted in them, it’d arrive within a few weeks. She would paint my fingernails, but not until I let her cut them…because dirty nails and painted nails never go together. There were daily visits with her and I remember once when I was maybe 6, she told me that my writing was so beautiful that maybe she would get me a special cursive book so I could learn to write cursive. She thought everything I did was perfect and I thought everything about her was magical.

I adore my grandma more than I can even describe. She was so completely put together and looked perfect everywhere she went and at home she was silly and would stomp her feet and cry when she laughed. She let us come play whenever we wanted and never ever scolded us. Ever. She’d let us eat whatever we wanted and would take us to rent movies and play at her house every Wednesday. “Grandma Day” we called it. Even into my highschool years, I’d go visit almost every day. She knew everything about me and was so proud of anything I did. When I pierced my nose, she went and bought me a diamond stud. In 10th grade, she got me a pair of skin-tight leather pants for Christmas. She knew what I loved and didn’t question it. She was so strong, and took care of my grandpa when he needed it. She stuck with him when things were really difficult and loved him so much. When Tracy had her daughter, there were nights that were really difficult as a single mama to a newborn. My grandma asked me if I’d like to go stay the night at Tracy’s house so we could be on baby duty while Tracy slept. Of course I said yes. When I had Maria, one of my first thoughts was, “Grandma would have loved her.” And she totally would have. She would get a kick out of my kids — I picture her stomping her feet, laughing so hard whenever Charlotte does her creepy kitty. I can picture her buying every single Lego set under the sun for Jamie. She’d be the first one to sign Maria up for Violin, if Danny hadn’t and she’d never let Alice skip a ballet class — she’d take her if I couldn’t. And Olive? She’d want to hold her every chance she had.

So, when my Aunt Tracy emailed our family and asked if anyone would like my grandma’s cedar chest, I waited….I didn’t want to pounce on it if my other aunt (Shari) or my mom wanted it really badly. But after no one had responded, I said that of course I would love it! She delivered it yesterday and after I finally figured out how to open it, I was in heaven.



There was her honeymoon dress, a Japanese outfit with shoes, little clothes, religious things, photos, newspapers,…

A maternity skirt she had made…


Napkins from her and my grandpa’s wedding…


Embroidered napkins….


Wedding veil…


Lace wedding dress with satin underlay…


Wedding photos…


….and a ceramic cow….(what??)


Such fantastical treasures.


5 thoughts on “Fantastical Treasures

  1. Danielle Bradshaw

    What an amazing gift! It makes me think of paying dress up with Grandma’s scarves. Have fun with your treasure!!!

  2. Trish Remacle

    Ruthie, Your post made me cry….it reminded me of my Grandma & how much I miss her. We spent almost everyday at my Grandma & Grandpa’s and they spoiled us rotten. Popcorn without the lid so it would pop all over the kitchen, Cabbage Patch Kids at Christmas, special family rings on our 16th birthday’s, camping trips during the summer, and laughter….the memories are endless. I love that you received her ceder chest and all of the memories inside. What a special treasure for you to have. It sounds like your Grandma was a very special lady and I think she is probably very excited for you to have her special treasures.


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