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Thursday, May 10, 2012

Triggering Memories

May is a month for passages, for finishing and beginning stages of life's journeys. Pictures bring back the memories that make me smile back on events both big and small--all of which merge into a collage of what was, what is and what is yet to come. If I may, I'll share a few memories inspired by some photos I plucked at random from my personal collection.

 Flowers bloom, only to fade and come back the following year, evoking memories of the Mother's Day when this orchid arrived from a daughter who couldn't be with me for the first time in her life. I think about the end of her childhood and beginnings of a friendship I'm reminded of each time the plant breaks out in vibrant color. Each blossom takes me back in time to when she took her first step...went off to the first day of kindergarten...graduated from high school...and married the love of her life one bright, spring afternoon far away from home.
 I remember going last year to see my middle son, noticing how he's grown up and changed--but yet he's kept the wonderful sense of humor and love for animals that made me so proud when he was a little boy. Life goes on, but some things never change. The wooden owl reminds me of a day trip we took west of Denver, where a carver turned simple wood posts into fanciful pieces of art, and that brings to mind the lovely flowers and breathtaking scenery he showed me during my stay.

These pictures bring back other memories, of Tex-Mex dinners and frozen margaritas, the best lox and bagels I ever ate at a Kosher deli that was featured in Drive Ins, Diners and Dives...and best of all, the fun of meeting my son's partner's family and their circle of good friends at a Sunday brunch complete with an incredible array of food and drink. I've never enjoyed such fantastic tasting mimosas as the ones his partner made for us that day!

On the way home I detoured by my youngest son's and got to hold his then-three month old baby, who reminded me so much of his daddy at that age. The shot of the three metal pigs--daddy, mommy and baby, taken outside their apartment--brings bittersweet memories of the time when we thought their future promised a lifetime of togetherness. Though my son and his love split up, they've kept their little one in mind and promised that even though they're not together, their little boy will always have both of them, no matter what they have to do to accomplish it. I laugh through my tears, because while not all the memories are happy, they remind me of beginnings and endings, the joy and sadness I'm glad to share with the ones I love. 

Thanks for letting me share a few of my memories. Whether happy or sad, they make up the fabric of my life, my family and my friends, and thus they're all precious. The worst fate I can imagine is losing my memory--I pray that never happens to me, to you or to any of us.

I hope you'll share some of your fondest memories with me. I'll be choosing my favorite one of your comments in June and asking the winner to choose one of my nearly 100 books they'd like to read. I'll post the winner's name on this blog as a comment.

Ann Jacobs
Watch for MOUNTAIN HEAT, a Blush romance coming soon from Ellora's Cave


  1. Very insightful. My problem is learning how to pace the memories for my character's so they don't seem overwhelming, or like a crutch for threading in back story.

    Most times I flat out try to avoid flashbacks. Thanks for sharing this with us.

    1. Pacing characters' memories sometimes is tricky. What I try to do is feed memories bit by bit, sort of like putting together a mosaic, without putting too much in any one scene. Flashbacks are hard to do well, but for authors who can manage it, they can sometimes be very dramatic and memorable to readers!

  2. Ann, I love flipping through our photos and being reminded of sweet moments past :) DH has been making our family a new calendar each year using photos from the month in the previous year--this month for instance, I'm looking at a photo of my smiling kids from last Mother's Day :) They'd made breakfast of sorts ;p Last year's August photo was one of DH and our youngest at a pool party--the little guy has a huge grin even though you can see his lips are nearly blue from being in the water so long! And the one from last October was bittersweet, as it was one of our birthday lunch with DH's dad, who since passed away. So many sweet memories!

    Thanks for reminding us about appreciating our precious times together, Ann!

    1. Sometimes it takes me going through photos to see times I didn't realize when the pictures were taken would become precious. Thank YOU for reminding me!

  3. We've lived in the same house for 30 years, raised both our boys here, and everywhere I look brings back a special memory. I especially love all the crafts the boys made for me through out the years, and for the most part, all are still intact and proudly displayed. There is a lot of love in those items created by little hands.

    I just found out that I will be a first time Grandma in the Fall, and now those memories of my boys as infants seem even more precious. I can't wait to start over with more wonderful memory days of our next generation.

    caity_mack at yahoo dot com

    caity_mack at yahoo dot com


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