which house it is.
the corner house across from the park with the outdoor swimming pool,
two blocks from Rickard Elementary
three blocks to Jr. High (and lunches of french fries at Service Drug)
a block and half to High School (to which we drove, back and forth, because, duh, who WALKS to school in High School?)
or this garden-town home
on the opposite side of the state...
not a STEP to worry about in this wide open,
lovely open-concep two bedroom, two bath, complete with a garage the size of the first floor of my own house in Boston....
HEATED garage, people.
it's Mom's house. (and my step-dad's, yes, of course....)
always flowers at mom's house
and the first day I visit,
it's always the same.
I check things out.
I look for the familiar library desk...filled with notes.
Her bedroom furniture, brand new and beautiful
(can I have this when you go, Mom?)
still holds her essence.
I snoop in her jewelry to look for the cross I gave her the first time I went to Israel,
and I look for her favorite photo of my twin and I
(one squalling bald baby, and one terrified moppy haired baby staring at her crying sister)
and I seek the picture of my grandfather that my uncle captured,
many years ago,
Grandpa Lee is looking over the lake, not focused on the camera, but probably thinking about fishing.
my twin and me
Oh, there are so many more photos...
of my nephews, and me and my sisters' baby pictures hung in a cluster in her bedroom,
and the antique photos
of female ancestors
that hung in the basement near my room
that creeped me out
when I would come home late in high school,
because I SWORE their eyes followed me...
only to continue to haunt me
in the guest bedroom where I sleep, today
watching over me like serious angels.
Do they know my heart?
(kinda scary, right?)
it's Mom's house.
I make sure she has all the familiar stuff in the fridge, and cupboards
lots of condiments (some probably expired, but you just don't throw this stuff away, you know?)
bread, Life cereal, and a LOT of tupperware (how did this happen? I tossed out so much three summers ago when I helped her and my step-dad move. I guess having tupperware is security, or what makes a kitchen functional. )
The little things that have been gifted to her over the years--
the blue and white pottery my sister in california gave her,
the little plaques and decorative pictures,
whether they match or not, they are around,
because that is how a mother rolls, right?
what is more precious than a watercolor painted by a 7th grader?
or a letter from a preschool grandson?
it's Mom's house.
and so, so much more.