Posts Tagged ‘saving our allowance’

If you read my last post “I’ve Never Been to Italy”, you’ll know I ended it with a photo of this Italian cookie jar. Read on for the story behind the cookie jar.

An Italian cookie jar

My siblings and I used to love to go to the local “shopping center” first to the drug store to sit at the counter, spin around on the stools, and drink a cherry coke. When we finished that, we found the toy store where we spent hours dreaming of our next birthday or Christmas wish list. I dreamed of more Barbie clothes. My older brother checked out the model planes. My younger brother checked out the Hardy Boys books he hadn’t read yet and I don’t remember what my younger sister oogled.

One year, we decided to get my mother a very special gift so we found ourselves in the jewelry store between the drug store and the toy store. Mr. N., the owner of the store, wasn’t surprised to see us. He had three kids and his oldest was a friend of mine so I had been to his house several times. For Mom’s gift, first we thought of a charm, but it occurred to us my mother didn’t have a charm bracelet. Then I eyed the colorful, ceramic house. It reminded me of Madeline’s house. You know “In an old house in Paris all covered with vines, lived twelve little girls in two straight lines.”

“What is it?” I asked.

“It’s a cookie jar,” Mr. N. replied. “See it’s from Italy,” he pointed this out flipping the house upside down so I could view the Italian markings.

I loved it and convinced my brothers and sister that should be our gift. “How much is it?” we asked. The response was more than we could pay. “I can put it away for you,” Mr. N. suggested until you save up your money.” So for several weeks we returned to pay on our gift. Besides we knew it and our secret were safe in his store. Imagine my dad’s surprise when we told him about our secret gift asking him to drive us to the jewelry store to pick up the gift for Mom. We just knew it may not be safe in a bicycle basket.

My mother loved the cookie jar, so much it stayed behind the glass doors of her dining room hutch. “Hrumph,” no cookies for that jar. Then we moved to FL. Enter Vivian the decorator who coordinated aqua drapes, blue/green carpet and a hint of aqua in the wall paint for the living room/dining room.

“What’s this?” she asked eyeing the cookie jar. “Hmmmm, it has just the right colors.”

“It’s a cookie jar the kids gave me when we lived in TX,” my mother answered. “I don’t like to put it out because I’m afraid they might break it.”

“Things must be used,” Vivian told her. “They won’t break it.”

Thank you, Vivian. Sure enough, here it is on my mother’s kitchen counter some 50 years old and still not chipped, cracked or broken and always a cookie inside.

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