Gifts

My wonderful Dad has Alzheimer’s. Like my Dad,  I tend to look back a lot at scattered moments.  One I will never forget is opening my birthday gift this year, from my Dad.  With the help of his caregiver and my Mom, my Dad was able and proud to gather, wash and paint ordinary rocks.  They are not so ordinary any more.  Each is brilliantly colored and  labeled with the name of a family member.

I felt it only fitting to present my gift to a small section of my yard.  It holds many memories of moments. The bird feeder was constructed by my kids and husband and incorporates marbles belonging to my father-in law’s childhood.  The bricks comprising the circle and the rose planting came from my grandparent’s yard.  The violets were lovingly transplanted from my parent’s home one stiflingly hot day by my Dad.  The pig was a gift from my in-laws as a house warming present over twenty years ago.

I remember playing in my grandparent’s yard.  I remember mentioning to my Dad that I coveted his violets.  I remember moving into my home, when my kids were small and were most often involved in making something meaningful.

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Published by elenacaravela

My world is a wonder of visual candy and foreboding shadow shapes vying every waking moment for my full attention.

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  1. So sorry to hear about your Dad. Glad you have wonderful memories, from him & other family members, and are able to enjoy them in this lovely sentimental garden accent. Memories & our past are so very important.

    1. The devastation of Alzheimer’s is such that we are sometimes surprised by glimmers of recognition. More rarely but even more welcome, are statements of love that are still possible. Now we are able to look out the window and enjoy one of my Dad’s statements, regularly. Thanks Otto.

  2. It’s beautiful and very inspirational! Your post made me think about things that are really important in life. I have also looked at your porfolio of children book illustrations and loved it – my kids (age 11) too! Thank you for sharing and speak to you at the next post.

  3. I have a vivid memory of a special meal at your house, probably 1964. Your dad had been fishing and served blow fish which had been exquisitely fried. Funny to think about what creates a long lasting memory.

    1. You have a wonderful memory. Yes, for a time my Dad did fish with my grandfather. Thanks Ann, so thoughtful of you. I so appreciate your recollection. I fondly remember you parents.

  4. Like many have said before me this is truly beautiful and so special. Thank you so much for sharing your story and memories.

  5. What a special place to have in your backyard. I love it, elena. I, too, would like some remembrances out in my garden of my parents and all the others I’ve loved.

  6. Elena, how lovely. I think you were the best gift your Dad ever got – his beautiful, first-born daughter – you along with Jack (and Vaughn, Julian and Dianne Elena). Love, JM

  7. I’m so sorry to hear that your father has Alzheimers Elena, I worked in a specialist dementia unit for 10 years and know how difficult this illness can be for everyone involved.. Glad though that he is still able to enjoy painting.. sending you a hug across the miles..

  8. So touching… I felt in my heart dear Elena. But how nice to have nice memories… This photograph is so lovely… and so meaningful. Thank you for sharing with us, my love, my feelings with you, nia

  9. this is so lovely as is the story. your whole family is represented in this little yard decoration, how cool is that?

    1. My Dad started painting and drawing when he retired and discovered a talent he never knew he had. He was able to paint for a short time, and created many pieces he was proud of. Now, he is content to focus and render lines and strokes with one color only. It still brings him joy.

  10. Sorry to hear about your Dad. Alzheimer’s is so destructive. It can also be heartbreaking for the loved ones. You have memories that are gold dust – no, they are worth more than that, they are priceless.

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