Family Jewels
June 22, 2011, 7:38 am
Filed under: June 2011
Great Grandpa’s Milking Stool

June 22, 2011

     This little stool belonged to my mother’s grandpa. He milked cows on a little farm near Andover Ohio. This stool was made by him and is one of my most treasured possessions. The little stool is over 80 years old, but when I put my hand on it, I am transcended back to a time when I could stand in my grandpa’s barn. The cows were all in a row, the cats waited nearby while grandma and grandpa finished milking. I can feel my grandpa’s hand, when I touch the handle. To some it is just and old wobbly wooden stool, but to me it is a family jewel.
     I am so very lucky to have a treasure trove of riches like I just described. Some poor folks only have money and property that their heirs left behind. I have far greater riches. On my kitchen shelf  is the butter churn my dad’s mother made butter with. I even have an old wooden butter mold she used. One turn of the crank and I am once again a small boy watching my grandma put love in everything she touched.
     I have an appreciation for nature and farming that was instilled in my heart. I have memories that I cherish and even some old photos. It is the little things that say I love you. My wife wears the ring my father gave my mother at their engagement. It is a small band with a very small diamond. The monetary value is low, but to me, it is priceless. It is also priceless to me,  that my wife wears it next to her own wedding rings.
     In an old box in my shop I have my great grandpa’s rivet machine. He and I fixed pony harness many times using that old tool. I even have a few of his old rivets left to boot. Sometimes I get it out, just to look at it, to remember my grandpa and the good times we shared some 40 plus years ago.
     In the back of my sock drawer, is an old check box. It is not filled with receipts or old checks. It contains some old medals off my father’s FFA jacket and my mother’s apron strings. My mom gave me the box with her apron strings in it, on the day I graduated from high school. It was her way of telling me that I was grown and she was letting me go. I still cry now and then when I touch them.
     I feel a little sorry for the folks that only have money or thousands of acres of land, what a terrible gift that must be. I see some folks be given their grandparents farm and the first thing they do is have the trees all cut from the woods. They next split the farm into building lots. I think they must rub their hands and salivate while they wait for the money to roll in…. kind of makes me sick.
     I wouldn’t sell my treasures for any price. They surround me literally. I have gifts from my ancestors and a whole drawer from my children. There is a can full of  coupons made by my youngest son for hugs and small chores, a couple of walking sticks from a hiking trip long ago. There are cards and photos and even and old toy or two, that gladden this man’s heart.
     Lastly, there are memories, I can’t imagine how you could put a price on those. They come from time spent with people doing things, picking blackberries, cutting wood, sled riding, horse wagon rides, peeling apples or just sitting nearby, explaining the ways of the world.
      If I was to list in a book,  all the treasures in my heart, I don’t think I could do it before I run out of time on this Earth. I have whole chapters devoted just to friends, old and new. There are chapters that would contain a few bad things and bad times, but those rough spots, make the good things so much sweeter. I am so very grateful to have such a list……… Yes, I am a very rich man.

1 Comment so far
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Not to forget, so I will mention, that you also hold the treasure of the scissors (among others) that were used to cut those aprin stings 😉 How cool was that symbolism? (Mom was smarter than she gave herself credit & so are you)

Comment by Charlie

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