Way before the age of personal computers, google search, and Alexa, my parents provided us with information at our fingertips with subscriptions to Newsweek, National Geographic, and Highlight Magazine. Our home’s hallway was lined with bookshelves containing three sets of encycolpedias, and at the “T” juncture at the end of the hallway, a mammoth Webster’s Dictionary lay open like a family bible on an altar!

I depended on these tomes not only for information, but for pressing fauna and flowers. Yup, flowers intrigued me at an early age!

On family picnics, which were many, I picked poppies. Jumping from terrace to terrace, I plucked cyclamens tucked in between the rock crevices. Taking long walks amongst the ancient olive trees, I picked daisies. I’d bring my wild bouquets home, delicately trim their fronds and roots, and reverently place them between wax paper within the pages of Mr. Webster’s dictionary.

Daddy complained about it some when the flowers fell out as he was looking up the entymology or correct spelling of a word. But mom “shushed” him! One year, I asked her if I could make our locally sent Christmas cards using the pressed flowers and calligraphy I had just learned about in my school’s art class. She readily agreed!

I think a lot about those bygone creative ventures and how my mom nourished the light and life within us. I still have my illustrated book of Mediterranean flowers to which I refer quite often as I try to replicate their hospitable messages in my backyard sanctuary.

Just as the flowers that fell out of Webster’s Dictionary when daddy was on a word quest, so my pressed and preserved memories fall out of my mental pages, no matter how small and minute, the leaves brittle and the blooms faded, their light and life still present.


How have you preserved your memories?

Look at the lilies and how they grow. They don’t work or make their clothing, yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are. And if God cares so wonderfully for flowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith?

Luke 12: 27-28

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