keeping the book….

After my mom passed away in 2005,  we were sorting through her things and I found a book that I had given her for Mother’s Day.  It was called “Harvest of Bittersweet” by Pat Leimbach, who was a farm wife and mother just like my mom and me.   My mom was not an avid reader but I thought she would like this book because Pat Leimbach was from Ohio and because she wrote about the beauty and trials of being a farm wife.  I knew my mom could identify.

google images

google images

So I kept the book and even read it again.   I placed it on my bookshelf and there it stayed collecting dust.   Each time I would clean the bookshelves and try to downsize the number of books I had kept over the years, I would pick it up and almost pull it from the shelf to pass on to someone else.  But something always made me keep it.  My mom didn’t keep everything I had ever given her, but she had kept this book.  So I hung on to it.

A couple of weeks ago, I became involved in a cleaning frenzy with out of town visitors expected and my house still in a mess with kitchen remodeling and no kitchen sink.  Of course I invited everyone for lunch (did you ever cook for a crowd without a kitchen sink?)

In the midst of this frenzy I decided the bookshelves looked a little messy so I sorted and dusted and finally decided to get rid of the book I had given to my mom.  I figured we had both read it at least once so it was time for someone else to enjoy it.  It was tossed into a plastic bag full of other books I decided I could live without and taken to the community center where I volunteer each week.  It was out of sight, out of mind.  I probably would have never thought of it again.

I returned this week to my volunteer position and was greeted by the thrift shop store director, who told me a friend who also volunteers there had bought a couple of books for me and had left them on the desk.  I eagerly reached in the bag, and found….   “Harvest of Bittersweet”  along with a note that read…”Harvest…..”  the rural answer to Erma Bombeck – pointers for your book.”

I laughed and thought – what a crazy turn of events.  The more I thought about it, the more I wondered about it.  Mother’s Day has been a difficult holiday since mom has passed.  Funny how this book came back to me the week before Mother’s Day.   It all seemed rather curious, rather transcendental.

I am keeping  the book.

* for Myra


About Life in the 50's and beyond...

Welcome to Life in the 50's and 60's and beyond .... where I write about my childhood memories, music of the 60's and about life in the country. I am a mother, grandmother, farmer's wife, business owner, and retired teacher.
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16 Responses to keeping the book….

  1. What a great story and doesn’t it just confirm what we all feel – that our loved ones are around. You were meant to hang on to that book, apparently – I think your mom treasured it more than you know, and quite simply, because it came from you. This made me smile. Wonderful, Ruth. 🙂


  2. My mother passed away two years ago – and we were just cleaning out her house a couple of weeks ago. It was absolutely amazing the stuff that she kept that was completely worthless to anyone else, but was a treasure to her. Let that be a lesson to all of us who constantly go out and try to buy the biggest and best for our parents!


  3. LB says:

    You have such a gift for story telling! And what a story!! Just lovely 🙂


  4. Maxi says:

    Omg Ruth, a message from beyond to hold and treasure.
    blessings ~ maxi


  5. For sure…you are meant to keep this book a litle while longer…and I have no doubt your Mom has a part in it… How beautiful!…


  6. Thanks, Karen…. I am sure there are many stories from our community center.
    Happy Mother’s Day to you!


  7. love this story – it is a message from your mom


  8. There were many things I could part with of my mom’s things, but a few things I treasured. It is so neat how that book would be a special keepsake (even after you thought it could go on)- with a bond between you and your mom. Happy Mothers’ Day, Ruth.


  9. Karen says:

    Ruth, I loved this story! It seems one of the many, many stories I hear that are so very unique from this community center you are speaking about. And more than that, it spoke of timelessness and the fact that love just doesn’t stop. It goes on and on, especially if we keep our eyes and hearts open to its longevity of spirit. Bless you as a mother and bless your mother whose lovely spirit lives on especially in your very warm words.


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