A Silver Spoon and So Much More…

Matt and I pull into the parking stall of our camp sight, and our first task is to unload the car and dump our gear onto the picnic table. A slight breeze floats through the pine trees cooling us from the sun’s burning touch and the blue lake water invites us in for a swim. The invitation is tempting, but first the labor of setting up camp. I dig into the big green tub looking for kitchen stuff and my breath catches when my eyes focus on the old set of silverware. When I was a little girl, we had a cabin in Big Bear, California, which is where Mom used the silverware. After both of my parents had passed, the set came to me. It’s black and silver, service for six, a little faded, but I couldn’t believe how sturdy it was to have lasted over fifty years. At the time, I didn’t give it much thought, so I added it to our camping paraphernalia.

As Matt and I enjoy the stir fry dinner he prepares on the first night, the old silverware evokes fond memories. An image of our cabin on the corner lot enfolded by sugar pines comes to mind. I remind Matt of the time when our little brave dog, Duffy, climbed up the snow bank, standing on the roof as if to say, “I am King!” That cozy mountain retreat also held many kitchen-table conversations full of laughter. Although Matt never had the chance to see the cabin, he remembers Mom’s delicious cooking. We especially savored her lasagna that was contest-winner-worthy. I recall the aroma swirling around, enticing Dad, my sisters, and me as we were eager to capture it and dig into the mouth-watering dish. I line up evenly in my mind each nuance of those childhood memories with my parents – days of playing badminton under a cloudless sky and a blazing sun, and then tobogganing when the ground was blanketed in snow and the temperature was bitter cold.

I am wrapped in a sentimental blanket on this trip, thinking of Mom and Dad, wishing I could feel their hugs, hear their laughter, and listen to their advice one more time. But would one more time still be enough? I don’t wallow in sadness; instead, I revel in the good times letting the memories advance like pictures on a camera roll. Before Matt and I realize, the campfires, swimming, hiking, and reminiscing have catapulted time into lightning speed. Our trip has ended and in the blink of an eye, we’re home doing clean-up. It dawns on me that I don’t want this set stashed away again, hidden beneath pots and pans and forgotten until the next trip. These forks, knives, and spoons have their own stories to tell. I combine them with our sets and I’m not bothered that they don’t match our decor. Years ago, the difference would’ve mattered. Now, life is a far cry from when mom and dad were still with us, so as we sit at our table using this shiny silverware, the family tales continue. We smile, we laugh, and now and then, tears that we thought had dried up, slowly find their way down our cheeks again.

Maybe I didn’t see the true value when this set was given to me. Perhaps I was blinded by tears, existing in my world of grief where a dark cloud was parked above my head. It could be that I hadn’t processed the finality of their death. I would see them again, wouldn’t I? The phone will ring and I’ll listen to Mom’s, “I just wanted to hear your voice.” Or, they’ll be over for lunch next week. When enough time had passed, reality sank in: I acknowledged their passing for what it was and accepted the truth. So, the timing and how I stumbled upon this treasure was relevant. My grieving had ended, widening the gap for remembering all the good things that keep us moving forward when we lose a loved one. Even in this set’s simplicity, its silver clean lines prove to be a nostalgic gem never to be buried again.

The painting of our cabin was done by a friend in Big Bear and my sister has it in her house – a treasure to keep forever.

Lauren Scott (c) 2020

40 thoughts on “A Silver Spoon and So Much More…

  1. What a lovely post, Lauren, and beautiful vivid memories. My family had a cabin by a lake for decades, so I can relate to the antics and happy happenings, even finding a treasured “batman” spoon years later in my dad’s camping gear. Your post made me want to go camping again. 🙂 ❤

    1. Thanks, Diana, for your lovely comment. I’m glad you could relate to the lake memories and the batman spoon made me smile. We’re going camping later in the summer and I can’t wait. We love to be outdoors among nature’s beauty and right next to a big blue lake. And camping is a good option for social distancing, living in the outdoors, not worrying about a hotel room with the things we don’t want to touch right now. 🙂 Hope you get the chance to camp again soon. 💗🌲🍃

  2. Is that the Big Bear mountain out from LA? That is more than an 8 hour trip from SFO where you live. I guess memories take us back to the places we had the most pleasure in our growing up years don’t they?

    1. Hi Ian, yes, our cabin was in Big Bear in Southern Cal. But I was a young child living in Orange County at the time, so the drive was less than 2 hours back then. We don’t have it anymore, but it was a perfect get-away destination for our family in the past. So many wonderful memories…

  3. It is interesting, Lauren, how certain objects evoke memories and bring us right back to a time and place. You remind me how I miss the kitchen-table conversations full of laughter. Badminton was a game we also often played. You also remind me how we do not stop truly grieving. The grieving and remembering just changes over time. A very moving, beautiful post, Lauren.❤️ I love the pictures and especially the painting.

    1. Aww, thanks, Erica, for your beautiful words. It sounds like we had similar memories and experiences. As to grieving, I agree, we don’t stop, but the phases change over time. Today would’ve been my mom’s 99th birthday, so I whispered “Happy birthday” to her and got a little teary-eyed, too. Oh, how I wish life had different rules, you know? Death shouldn’t be one of them. When I was a child, I thought my parents would live forever. The beauty of innocence and youth. Then as I grew older and watched them gracefully age into their nineties, I realized that they really did live “forever” (to 90 & 97). A good, long life that wasn’t without strife, but was a profound and beautiful story of their own. Thanks again for your lovely words. 💗

  4. I enjoyed these memories of yours, Lauren. It’s amazing how everything is connected – how something like a set of silverware can evoke such profound memories of those we love!
    Hugs to you 💛🌻🤗

  5. A truly beautiful post Lauren, your words of memories sad yet delightful to read, I love the imagery especially the cabin, which when I got to the painting was how I saw it in my mind, you must be surrounded with beautiful memories, thank you for sharing a lovely post.

    1. Thanks so much, Ian, for your beautiful, detailed comment. I have many great memories of the cabin. It wasn’t fancy, but it was cozy, quaint, and perfect. I’m so glad we still have the painting in our family to remind us of those wonderful times and years with my parents. Thanks again and hope you’re doing well, my friend…

  6. I think keeping some of our parents belongings that can still be put to good use is so presious Lauren. I have a little silver sugar spoon that I can remember being part of my life growing up. I keep it in the sugar bowl and often use it without thinking of my mum then every so often I will look at it differently and remember her and my childhood. I think those moments are important in the grieving process as our response shows us how far weve travelled forward. Hope you enjoy your camping.

    1. I agree with all you said, Allison. Even the simplest of things can trigger precious memories from years past. Thanks for sharing your story of the silver sugar spoon. I’m sure it’s dainty and beautiful and brings back wonderful memories of your mom. I still have some of my mom’s cookie sheets and pans, too. They’re a bit weathered but work just fine. 🙂 Hope all is well and thanks for commenting. I appreciate your thoughts when you share them. xo

  7. Such a poignant post. The wonderful thing about memories is we can call them up at any time we need them. I’m glad you came across your mom’s silverware and use it often. I have no doubt your mom shed tears of joy when she saw the happy memories it brought to mind. She is with you every day and has her arms wrapped around you in loving hugs. Take care, my friend. Love and hugs. 💕💕

    1. Thanks, Michelle, and I love your first thought: “Pulling up memories any time we need them.” And thank you for your lovely words, too. I got teary-eyed thinking of Mom. It’s hard to believe she’s been gone 8 years now and Dad almost 3. Life. Sigh…but we were blessed to have them around for so long, well into their nineties. Sending you much love and many hugs, too. 💗💗

      1. I don’t think we ever get over the comfort of our parents’ hugs when they’re gone. Mom passed away 13 years ago, my Dad 18 years ago. Not a day passes that I don’t think of them, have a question I’d like to ask them, or just want to hear their voices. 💕

  8. Ah, my dear Lauren, so beautifully written and those thoughts never leave us, even if they are triggered by a ‘silver spoon’… Such fond memories from that cabin! Love the painting.
    Many hugs and xoxoxoxoxoxo

  9. Lauren, a touching and beautiful post where you bring the meaning of life and passing through the image of the cutlery set. The memory the knives and forks evoke are detailed with love, so immediate I felt transported to the cabin! Thank you for your heartfelt wisdom … a serenity and tranquility echoes through your words.

  10. Your post gave a sense of peace as your reminisced within the nostalgia of times gone by with family and pets… I found myself within the narrative of those beautiful memories you painted…
    The log cabin I can feel held great comfort and joy even within those cold snowy days you were always surrounding within the comfort blanket of families love..

    Beautiful Lauren…. and that painting also beautiful … Thank you for sharing your inner most thoughts… We have so much to look back upon and be grateful for….

    Much love ❤ 🙏💚

    1. I’m so glad my words and memories provided a sense of peace, Sue. Thank you SO much for your beautiful, soothing comment. I find myself looking back more frequently these days, probably because the years fly by faster than before. More stories will come that I hope won’t cause readers to lay their heads down on their keyboards! Much love to you and I appreciate you taking the time to play catch-up. I know you haven’t been blogging as much, so no expectations. However, it’s always great to see you. 🙂 Love and hugs to you! 💓💓💓

      1. Always a pleasure dear Lauren, and I am loving your new share of writing.. We are all of us purging deeper as those memories surface 🙂 Wonderful to share some Silver Spoons 🙂

  11. Wonderful that you will be using the silver, Lauren. Thanks for sharing these memories with us. I know sometimes thoughts of the past come back in so much detail that it almost takes my breath away. HUGS

    1. I’m glad you enjoyed, Christy, and it’s SO good to see you. I’ve been writing more of these personal stories and enjoying the walk down memory lane. By the way, how is married life? Your photos were gorgeous! Thanks so much for stopping by. Hugs to you, too! xoxo

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