I was listening to the “Gaithers” as they showed parts of a tape honoring the memory of the most loved bass singer in gospel music, George Younce, and he made a statement that fit what I’ve tried to say about building memories.

Quote: “Memories are a gift from God that cannot be destroyed.” George Younce

Not only are they a gift from God to hold, share and cherish, but He also gives us the ability to sort the bad from the good and hold the good memories close to our heart, like holding a soft and warm baby and feeling the comfort they bring to us.

Memories are like a blanket the Lord places around our aching shoulders, bent by age and to just plain takes away the hurt and pain of loneliness in our senior years.

Remembering a child’s hug and kiss on the check and “I love you, mommy or daddy,” bring a little smile and a little tear trickling down our cheek.

Then God blesses us again and give us grandchildren with their hugs and kisses.

It just keeps going on and on.

Memories just keep piling up til our hearts could just pop buttons.

If I knew then

There are so many daily joys for the parents of young children: pushing their swing, bouncing them on your knee, playing “horsey”, shooting marbles, playing baseball, etc.

Then one day, it dawns on you that you aren’t doing those things anymore – they’ve out grown it.

You realize that somewhere back there was the last time.

If I knew then what I know now, I would have sarvored that last occurrence of each of those childhood games, a little more.

I would have lingered a little longer at the swing; bounced them on my knee a little longer.

When we played “horsey” and that inevitable, gleeful plea came, “one more time, daddy, one more time”, I would have crawled across that floor on my hands and knees until sheer exhaustion made me drop.

Too late now

Submitted by Senior Pen-Pal.

Moms and dads today, just don’t have the time to spend with their children because of our cost of living being so high and they miss so many good memories.

The art of just sitting around telling stories before bedtime has become lost in the helter-skelter of today’s living.

Grandma and Grandpa are treated like they are old, senile, decrepit and forgetful; “They don’t know nuthin’” attitude has developed, so they are shoved aside; forgotten and extinct.

Quote: “The best place to find wisdom and knowledge, is on the knees of Grandma and Grandpa.”

Over the years I’ve let very few people get close to me, but once in a while, someone comes along and just grabs a hold of my heart and I allow myself to love them with a love that’s unconditional.

They prove themselves to be someone that loves me unconditionally, also.

They turn out to be a “true friend.”

Thru thick and thin, quirky ways and all my goofy ways, my hang-ups, my mistakes and just being me; They love me.

And let me tell you, it takes a true friend to accept me, just as I am; ‘cause I don’t change for nobody.

What you see is what you get.

My brother, Johnny, was my best friend, confidante, and protector.

But I had one friend that stood 2 feet higher than others until her family moved to California and I never got to see her again.

Sixteenth Birthday

Ernestine and I would usually spend our birthdays together as mine was in July and her was August. I was one month older.

When I turned 16, I didn’t have a birthday present as our families had decided to go on a trip to California and all of our money went toward the trip.

We would stop in each state and everybody picked cotton thru the week and go sight-seeing on weekends.

Us kids didn’t mind tho; we were seeing places besides Oklahoma.

First stop was New Mexico, at Aunt Mitt’s and Uncle Vestor’s, picking those big white, fluffy boles of cotton.

(Honestly folks. One bale would fill a man’s hand.)

We had been there a while and Ernestine’s birthday was coming up and our parents took us into Hatch, N.M. and Ollie Dell told Ernestine to look around and decide what she wanted for her birthday.

We took off down the street looking in different stores and found the most beautiful jewelry box any girl could ever want.

We had never had a jewelry box and that one made our hearts race like crazy.

Her birthday came around and everybody left the field early and everyone pitched in to make her 16th birthday special.

A cake was made and frosted, chicken was fried with smashed ‘tators, cream gravy, and homemade biscuits.

I was so excited ‘cause I was in on the “big surprise.”

Ernestine was getting that jewelry box.

Johnny even acted excited and that was unusual for him.

Anyway, we ate and instead of eating ice cream and cake first, they decided to give her her present first.

They had us to sit on the bed and I couldn’t hardly stand it.

I was so happy that at least Ernestine was getting that beautiful jewelry box, and yet, I envied her.

They brought the package in and set it on her lap; she cried, she was so happy.

Then I saw Johnny walk in with an identical package and with this big ole silly grin on his face, he sat a package on my lap, too.

“Open it up, Lulu,” he said.

We really cried then, ‘cause I had one too, just like Ernestine’s.

Mother and Johnny had worked extra hard to get me a birthday present too.

That was to be our last birthday we celebrated together; but one I will never forget.

Most importantly was the fact our families loved us enough to make this last birthday together very special.

My two bestest friends, have already gone home; but just wait ‘til I get there. Ol’ St. Peter may want to throw us out on our tin ear, honey.

But what a slam-dunkin’ good time we’ll have again.

Quote: “A true friend loves you, unconditionally.”

These stories are all true, folks.

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