Sometime during my first grade year, I spent some time with Nana Janes in Portola, California. Nana was not staying at her home that week; she was taking care of the Knotty Pine Motel for a friend who was on vacation. The lobby of this place was knotty pine, and was gorgeous! I've loved knotty pine ever since, and have dreamed of buidling a knotty pine bedroom.
(Picture from here: http://www.redcrestresort.com/-- my favorite getaway spot.)
Nana Janes was an early riser, and she didn't realize that I also arose with the sun. She was very prim and proper. She woke up early in the morning so that she could dress in front of a wood stove to keep warm. The first morning I was there I startled her when I caught her dressing in front of the wood stove. I continued to wake up early every morning that week, but Nana was always dressed. She must have set an alarm prior to sunrise the rest of the week to get some privacy.
I remember Nana's hands. There were patterns in the lines on her hands. I remember wanting to take a crayon and connect some of the lines to see if I could make a picture--but I didn't dare ask her.
Years later I looked at my Dad's hands and saw those same patterns. I remember thinking that it must be "a Janes thing." The other day I found myself staring at my own hands at those same patterns. What I used to think was a fascinating jigsaw puzzle, turns out to be "old" skin. There's nothing intriguing about it at all. I don't mind having "old" skin; I've earned every wrinkle and every gray hair. I do find disappointment in this little discovery, however. I'm not sure why, but something I thought was "special" about my family just bit the dust.
Early morning seminary for me (and later my children) spoiled the fun of getting up early in the morning. Dragging myself out of bed is the norm these days. I'd better not build the knotty pine bedroom I've always wanted to build after all. Maybe it wouldn't be as "special" as the memory.