For me, nothing is more enjoyable on a cloudy afternoon when it’s too nippy for outside activity, but just right to stay inside and catch up on journaling and scrap booking…taking breaks ever-now-and-then to look out the window checking the barley-green buds popping out on the trees, noticing the robins acting a bit more sociable hop-scotching around, waking up the worms half hidden in the ground and seeing the yellow daffodils already in bloom.

It’s difficult for me to stick to one project as I leaf through tomes and piles of paper things heaped together and stacked so high.

Some projects unfinished that should have been taken care of a long time ago, as I convince myself…there’s really no hurry, I’m conjuring up memories.

In my mind, I keep thinking of the little sign I first saw in the late Dr. Bailey’s office years ago…”The hurrier I go, the behinder I get.” Sooner or later it will all come together and I’ll have one or more scrapbook with every page filled to the brim with memories stretched for miles.

My mother-in-law, Nora (Johnson) Gamble kept a journal, a treasure trove of information. It’s on a day like today that entices me to bring it out and scan through the pages of time.

I realize now, but didn’t know back then that she loved poetry. There’s poems jotted down throughout, one in particular, no title and no author maybe copied, maybe not.

Take a half a cup of friendship

And a cup of thoughtfulness

And cream the two together

With a pinch of tenderness.

Just very lightly beaten

In a bowl of loyalty,

In a pretty cup of faith and love,

And one of charity.

Be sure to add a sudden tear

Of heartfelt sympathy,

Bake in a sweet…good natured pan,

And serve repeatedly.

Keeping up with what was going on in the community, important dates…to her for a reason. “Dad and I got our first social security check April 12, 1957 for $121.90.

“Got my new rug (gray) May 2, 1957. Dad picked it out.”

Another entry, “Got my porch fixed and my new screen door on July 12, 1968.” “Michael went to the Army April 12, 1969 and on and on…” The railroad track in Jenny Lind was taken up in October, 1958 and “Brought my new electric blanket at Penny’s. Got a 2 yr. guarantee and it cost $17.46, Bought January 20, 1958.”

This was my mother-in-law. She and I were very close. In fact, so close I called her “Aunt” before I married her son.

I knew her all my life. She came to see my mother…and me when I was first born, just a few days old.

I’m glad she kept a journal for to read and think about her today and remembering how…after her housework was done, time was taken to pretty-up, applying her make-up to her flawless skin and deciding which pair of clip earrings to put on that day.

I picture her with a tatting shuttle in her hand making lace for another pair of embroidered pillow cases or with a crochet needle, finishing up a pretty crochet doily…most likely chewing gum and counting stitches.

For almost twenty years, I called her “Aunt” Nora, but passing years, an abundance of love and two grandsons later, she was lovingly called…”Grandma.”