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Pledge and a Winter Day


Today is that day, that day that reminds me of my mom and our house. While folding towels and jeans in my laundry room, I think about her ironing; my dad’s starched shirts and our dresses in the vegetable bin of the ice box, mounds of 100% cotton fabric waiting to be ironed…someday. Then I think of the little bowls of wiggly Jell-O in the refrigerator, treats she made in the morning to give to us in the afternoon when we may have been bored from the long day. And I ‘see’ her rhythmically peeling potatoes for the night’s supper, hoping to get one of the mix master beaters to lick and enjoy before supper.


My goodness, I can see it all. It was so slow and simple. The hours of the day were a full 60 minutes, and the months were long, and Christmas was always a full year away. We filled each instance with simple things, we filled time with our imaginations. And, sometimes, we filled time with boredom, sometimes we just sat in the kitchen watching our mothers preparing the day…

I remember those times of restlessness and her giving me a spray bottle of Pledge and an old cloth baby diaper to dust bedroom furniture. Crazy, but it was kind of fun, taking off all the bottles of Tabu and Chanel No.5, and boxes of earbobs, bracelets and bobby pins from her dresser and spraying it with Pledge and rubbing until it was perfect and shiny and then arranging it all. I felt satisfaction from my little job and the boredom, somehow, drifted away. Still, today, I cannot dust my bedroom furniture without that memory…


Household chores, age-appropriate little jobs that linger in my heart and keep me company as I do those same things around my own house…that is how I love to stay warm in winter…

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