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, Dad was able and proud to gather, wash and paint a series of 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’s not beautifully manicured, but holds many dear memories of moments: The bird bath constructed by my kids and husband incorporating marbles belonging to my father-in law’s childhood. The bricks comprising the circle and the rose planting that came from my grandparent’s yard. The violets so lovingly transplanted from my parent’s home one stiflingly hot day by my Dad. The twenty year old garden pig, a housewarming gift from my in-laws.
I vividly remember playing with my siblings in my grandparent’s yard. I remember mentioning to my Dad that I coveted his violets. I remember the twinkle in the eye of my reserved father- in- law as he named the garden pig. I remember moving into our home, when our kids were small, playing and creating together. I remember all the elderly loved ones now passed, who relaxed in our yard and laughed.
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Our guest today is Elena Caravela, a visual artist and illustrator of children's books, from New Jersey. Please go see what she does over at Elena Caravela: Illustration for Children, Elenacaravela's Blog and Portrait of a Girl and Her Art. You'll be amazed! And as we all know, it's a small-small world...because she started visiting us after our guest Goeff Dunn was with us in early August. Welcome to V&V, Elena!