Letters From Home

Life looks at infmom / infmom looks at life

Charmed, I’m sure


Charm bracelets were really hot when I was a kid.  My cousin even sent me an official American Bandstand charm bracelet, which I wish I still had because they seem to be going for pretty good money on eBay these days.  My aunt and uncle gave me one from Switzerland that had lovely little bells on it.  I can still remember how it sounded.

Alas, those have both disappeared somewhere over the years and through my family’s many moves.  My high school friends gave me another one when we moved away from Iowa, and oddly enough I still have the actual bracelet but the charms are gone.  How that happened, I have no clue.

The bracelets seem to be undergoing a fashion renaissance of sorts these days.  And vintage ones are all over eBay (and I have been sorely tempted by several, but they went for prices higher than I could justify).  So about a year ago, I got another charm bracelet of my own, using a discount with the Exposures catalog.  It’s a nice double-linked silver bracelet that came with one small photo charm, and I bought another photo charm at the same time so I could have small photos of both my kids when they were each in the first grade.

I have slowly added charms to represent other important memories.  A silver sixpence for luck and for my time living in London.  A mother cat carrying a kitten, in remembrance of Caliban and her children.  A pewter cathedral rose window for my grandmother, who loved Notre Dame (the Paris original).  A bookworm for my son’s childhood nickname, and a Welsh dragon for my daughter (and for my memories of Wales).  An old-fashioned radio microphone for my husband, whom I met when I hired him for a radio station job.  And so forth.

I have been thinking long and hard about what charms I should buy to represent my parents.  I thought originally of a charm representing the “I love you” hand sign for my father, who was hard of hearing, but he never used sign language other than putting a hand behind his ear to indicate he had no idea what you just said.  Maybe a small record, for his love of jazz.  Or skis, to represent his time in the 10th Mountain Division during WWII.  Or a car to represent his love of travel.  If I could find a charm representing Nags Head, North Carolina, I’d buy that in a flash, because that was his favorite vacation spot.

My mother died last Sunday and I was wondering what I should get to represent her.  It didn’t take long to figure it out.  Years ago, the summer before I got married, I went with my family to Nova Scotia where my mom grew up.  We were exploring the beach area one day and I came across a big stack of lobster traps and took time to investigate.  My mother got the idea that I would like to have my very own lobster trap (heaven knows why) and she made arrangements to buy one.

Alas, we lived in a very small apartment and had absolutely no place to put a full-sized lobster trap.  It remained at my parents’ house for years until, after my parents divorced, my dad’s second wife disposed of it.  That wasn’t the only mean spirited thing she did, but that was representative of the way she thought.  Oh well, water under the bridge.

At any rate, yesterday I realized that a small lobster trap charm would be perfect, and I managed to find one.

Now, what on earth to get for my dad.

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Author: infmom

Otherwise known as Infamous Mom.

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