~ The pieces are all sewn together, stitched with love.........and a quilt tells a story and the story is our past ~
The Arrowood family immigrated from England to Maryland in the 1700's. They went south, eventually settling in the mountains of North Carolina. Later , some went further south, into the Piedmont of North Carolina, in search of work and a better way of life.
I am in search of my family.
I search for those that came before me, and lived their lives as best they could. I am in search of their stories, how they lived, and how they loved.
I shared this love of seeking the past with my Dad, sharing each new finding with him, the thrill in his heart intermingling with mine. I continue this search in his honor, and hope to know these people of ours when I join up with them all in heaven.
~ Steve Lewis Arrowood 1932-2008 ~
Come with me, back to a simpler time and place. A place far removed from the hectic pace of today. To a time when life was hard, but the rewards were great. When your quality of life was determined by your own sweat, your own toil, and your own ingenuity.
Would you like a glass of sweet tea? Let's sit out on the porch where we will catch the sweetly scented breeze of summertime. Maybe Grandma will fry up some of her wonderful chicken... Time slows here.
"We shape our lives not by what we carry with us, but what we leave behind."
~You live as long as you are remembered.~
"Our most treasured family heirlooms are our sweet family memories. " Author: Unknown
"But those who came before us will teach you. They will teach you from the wisdom of former generations."
Saturday, December 5, 2009
Winter Settles Into the Bones
Winter is finally settling into the bones of the earth.
Earth has started to pull her woolen sweater closer around herself, and bow to face the harsh cold winds.
The ground has browned over and the leaves are scattered and dry, floating into the wind, plastering themselves haplessly, against fence posts.
The air takes on a new smell this time of year.
Gone is the sweet hay dried smell from the fields and the sweet apple-like smell from the air. It is replaced with a sharp smell that is hard to describe. The smell of artic air. Cold and metallic.
The cold winds blow over the fields that were green until the very last moment. Autumn is slow to leave in the Carolinas. It hangs on and acts as if it is never leaving. Then with a swoosh and a flurry, it is gone. Winter arrives without much announcement.
The trees, left bare boned, seem almost sad.
Limbs drooping at the prospect of bracing for another brutal assault of ice.
We tend to have more ice storms here, than actual snow. Whatever starts out as snow, high above, will melt and refreeze as it falls, leaving us with the ice. Downed tree limbs and power outages.
Winter takes me back in time to cold days spent with my grandparents. Days before school and holiday days off. The heater was slightly smelly and heated the front room to such a degree that clothes were optional on my young self. My grandparents still bundled up around it, the old bones still very much feeling the cold.
I would come in and head for the heater. I would place my mitten’d hands on it’s warm side. The glow from the heater dancing a red- orange tint on the still dimly lit front room. I can still see Grandma sitting in her rocker by the heater. No socks. Socks were a rare thing for Grandma, much less shoes. She was a free soul. She preferred the feel of the earth beneath her. She wore no shoes for most of the year. Unless she was headed out to town or church, then, on those occasions she would don high heels. She wore snazzy shoes. Always snazzy high fashion shoes, she loved them!
Never the sensible brogans of an older lady, that was simply not her.
The smell of coffee brewing with a chill in the air, takes me to that winter time at grandma and grandpa’s house. The outer rooms of the house were shut off from the main area, and not heated.
The warmer area around that heater and the front room was where everyone gathered. The central gathering place during the holidays.
Christmas at Grandma’s was magic. Magic in it’s purest form.
From the maraschino cherries floating in the red punch to the golden metallic leaves adorning the chocolate cake.
There were glowing Christmas lights in the front picture window, beckoning all to enter in.
There was pure Christmas magic in that house.
It wasn’t about the gifts. We all got something wrapped under the tree, but it was about more, much more, than presents.
It was the magic of love. Pure love flowed through that house. We were all together. We were a family. It was Christmas time. Time to celebrate and gather. Time to be together. All of us.
It just doesn’t get more magical that that.
With all the children, the grandchildren, the friend’s and others that came, we had over 40 each year in that house. With the passing of my grandmother, that magic just never was there again. Grandpa followed soon after losing grandma. An era was over. But the magic will never be forgotten by those that lived it.
Merry Christmas everyone.