May 21, 2014 10:59 PM

My Treasure Holding My Teasures

"Memories! We go through life collecting them"
~Laura Ingalls Wilder

The page sits blank and empty before me, my box of colored pencils lays open. This box I love, it has a story to share of how it came to be mine. It was a hot, sunny day in August many years ago. The town was small, even for a northern New Hampshire town. The common is huge and a main focus of its Main St. Big, old trees surround this patch of Main St. grass. And if life was one of dreams I would live here in this tiny town with its old steepled church and long, red carriage shed with arched doorways. Of all of my beloved New Hampshire this town is the one that has captured my inner heart. And so it was that August day on the common there was an antique show. He and I wandered through tables and tents holding and touching history ~ living bits of lives that came before ours, character and patina, weathered and beautiful. As we finished our tour, there on the last table was this box. I, pull his arm, showing him with delight that I know this box! It brings me back 25 years or more. Back in time I remember the first day of school, Mrs. Hodges, closets, the new smell of school, being away from Mom, putting my brand new 'Strawberry Shortcake' lunch box there in the row of other boxes. It was shiny and bright and brand new, something we rarely had then or now. Now we choose to find the old and loved and beautiful but to a six year old girl that shiny and new was a treasure indeed. Red and white and pink embossed metal...
I had seen only one of these boxes since those days and always regretted not buying it, but nonetheless I put it down, back on its table, wishing I wasn't so sentimental. And we leave the antiques on the common heading back to the truck, he stops and talks to one last dealer and I go to find some water, leaving him there.
Down the back roads of Northern New Hampshire we travel home and August turns into mid September. And I turn another year older. He hands me a wrapped package and I open it ~ wondering what it holds. As paper is removed, tears come to my eyes, there on the table sits 'My Box', no longer shiny but beautiful with patina and character.
What do I do with a box that is a memory? I happily fill it with some of my prized possessions ~ my colored pencils, erasers and sharpeners. My treasure holding my treasures...
I started out writing this story about my blank page but as the words came it took a path all its own, so my blank page will have to be a story for another time, another day.

From my heart to yours, Jen


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