Sunday, December 6, 2009

The Christmas Chair

My goal at the start of 2009 was to participate in a carnival before 2010.  Well, the year is almost up and I still haven't done a carnival post - until now!  The prompt for the 19th Smile for the Camera is: "The word prompt for the 19th Edition of Smile For The Camera is "Gift." It is the holiday season and a time for giving. So give Smile readers the gift of sharing, sharing a family photograph. It can be a gift given or received, it can be the gift of talent, it can be the gift of having the photograph itself. The interpretation of gift is yours. Admission is free with every photograph!"

That's me around Christmas in either 1990 or 1991 (I was just about to turn either three or four).  I actually have a vague memory of sitting for the picture.  All I really remember is my mother sitting me down in the chair and her telling me to put my hands in my lap like you see in the picture.  I also seem to recall sitting in the chair, waiting for my mother to get ready to take the picture, and comparing the Christmas trees on my stockings (which I loved) with the real tree next to me.  I believe the picture was taken as a "thank you" to my great-grandmother.  The "gift" of the picture is the chair I'm sitting in.  I don't know if the chair was a Christmas present but this picture was taken around the time I was given the chair.  The baby rocking chair was a gift from my great-grandmother, Gladys Viola Healey Shinn.  My mother told me that when I got it I asked my great-grandmother something along the lines of where she was going to sit since she was giving me 'her' rocker.  I'm pretty sure the chair was new when it was given to me (it definitely wasn't an heirloom) and I haven't been able to find a maker's mark or any details on where it might have come from.  If I had to guess, I'd say my great-grandmother got it at Lakewood Drugs in Lodi (a long-time institution which has sadly since gone out of business).  I've never seen any baby rockers like this one out there, though I'm sure there are.  It really was a beautiful little chair and it always reminds me of my great-grandmother.  Unfortunately, as little children do, I didn't value the chair too much when I was young and took it outside where one winter pretty much ruined it.  The varnish is off it now and the wood split on one side of the seat but I'm hanging on to it in the hopes that it is restorable.  I'd love to be able to pass it on because I feel that passing on that little chair is also passing on a little bit of my great-grandmother and all the warm memories I have of her.

This post was written for the 19th Smile for the Camera Carnival.  Photo is privately held by Leah, [address for private use], California; scanned 5 Dec 2009.  This image is not to be used, manipulated, copied or reproduced for commercial purposes or without the expressed written consent of the holder of the image.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the Smile!

    Bill ;-)
    Author of "13 Ways to Tell Your Ancestor Stories"


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