When I was growing up, Christmas time always brought plenty of boxes of mixed nuts and Fanny May candy. Members of our congregation wanted to give the pastor a little something, and we children were ready to eat all the goodies we got. Whenever we opened a box of fancy mixed nuts, we fought over one kind of nut — cashews. We all adored those sweet and salty little crescent nuts. Mom didn’t mind us devouring cashews. She couldn’t stand them. Mom ate all the other nuts, but she wouldn’t even touch a cashew. She told us this story:
Grandpa was a jack of all trades. With no more than an eighth grade education, he took on a variety of jobs to feed his family, whether it was working in an airplane factory during WWII or selling WearEver pots and pans. When my mother was a little girl, Grandpa saw an advertisement on a way to bring a little more income into the household. He decided to sell cashews out of vending machines that were similar to gumball machines. A large barrel of cashews arrived at my grandparents house, but unfortunately the vending machines never arrived. Without the vending machines, Grandpa’s plan couldn’t be put into action.
But what to do with the cashews?
Food was never wasted in my grandparents house, so their family ate cashews in everything. Cashews for snacks, cashews in casseroles, cashews in salads, cashews in dessert. When the cashews grew stale, Grandma toasted them in the oven. Mom became so sick and tired of those cashews that she literally never ate another cashew again.
As many of you know, Mom passed away at the young age of 67. I want to keep her memory alive for myself and also my children. I plan on writing stories about my parents, my grandparents, and also my own personal history. And so I’m beginning a new series on Tuesdays called Turning Back Time.
I invite you to join me, whether you would like to read along or write along. Next Tuesday, you will be able to link up your own Turning Back Time post. To help you along, I will provide a prompt each week.
The first prompt is:
Write a story about a childhood fad.
You may use this prompt in a variety of ways: Record a memory from your own childhood. Remember a story told by your parents, grandparents, aunts or uncles. You may also record a story from your own children’s past (or present) to help them remember their childhood when they are older.
If the person you want to write about is still alive, use this prompt as an interview question.
Most of all, have fun recording the memory and remember, your story is worth telling!