Tuesday, November 30, 2010


Last week I took a lovely drive down “Memory Lane.”

It’s been heavy on my heart lately to do more with my aging parents. So, I planned a little “day trip” with them.

My dad spent part of his childhood living in Hermosa Beach – only two blocks from the Pacific Ocean. He has many fond memories of those years…

And then, years later, he and my mom returned to the same area.

So, early last Wednesday morning, I drove down to pick them up at their house at the beach (are we detecting a theme in their lives??) We piled into my Explorer, Eddie(I’m not the ONLY one who names her car – you know who you are!) – and headed up the freeway. Took the proper exit…and began our nostalgic trip.

We drove from street to street, house to house, as we re-traced the recollections of my dad. Where his friend lived – the one who everyone picked on, but whom my dad befriended. Oh, over there was another friend – the one who figured out how to rig a tin-can telephone between the houses, until the parents found out they were talking until 1:00 in the morning! There’s where the nice man and his wife would sit with him on the swing, and tell him Bible stories. And there’s the house where the retired Naval officer lived – the one who procured an old searchlight off of a destroyer, and put it on his balcony pointed at the ocean – so the kids could swim in the waves until 9:00 at night.

Quite frankly, I was enraptured.

It sounded like a perfect Huckleberry Finn upbringing. Idyllic, slow-paced, a perpetual summer.

We went into the old grocery store – the TINY grocery store – that hadn’t changed a bit!! I bought some Advil, just so I could say I got something from “The Green Store.”

We walked out on the pier, and looked at the birds, and the sand, and the beautiful ocean.

We talked…endlessly.

I had been afraid of this day in some ways. My dad’s a little cantankerous nowadays. He can talk…on and on…and it’s hard to “escape.” But today, as he wove a beautiful tapestry of his childhood, I listened to every thread – and enjoyed it!

But here was the “highlight” of the day for me.

And here’s where my MOM got excited.

Evidently, when she was about five months pregnant with me, my dad got transferred down to Torrance…and they moved to Palos Verdes (just a little further down the coast from Hermosa Beach). They wanted to find the house that they had been living in when they brought me home from the hospital.

We snaked around streets, looking for the right house – was it even going to be there anymore? (Gotta hand it to my folks – their memories and sense of direction were SHARP that day!)

One last turn…and then my mom’s finger came flying from the back seat, “THERE IT IS!” she squealed.

And sure enough, there it was.

My parents’ faces glowed. They smiled. They chattered excitedly.

“Oh I wish we could go knock on the door,” my mom said.

“Let’s go!” I replied.



Dad decided to stay in the car. But my mom and I, arms linked together, walked up to the little house. Just as we approached the driveway, a car drove up – wouldn’t you know it! It was the owner! We explained why we were there. They let us come in!

I can’t explain the feelings that washed over me as I stood in that living room, holding my mom right next to my side, as she breathlessly sighed, “It hasn’t changed at all…”

I realized something at that moment. Obviously, I couldn’t remember a single minute from that time in my life. But my mom did. There is a part of me that will always belong to her…just her. And somehow, that knowledge made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. Close to her – in a way that I can’t explain.

It made me feel SPECIAL.

It reminded me of God. How He knew me before I was even born. And how a part of me will always belong to Him…just Him. And somehow, that knowledge makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. Close to Him – in a way that I can’t explain.

It makes me feel SPECIAL.

You’re special too. He knows you that way. He loves you that way. Isn’t that the most AWESOME thing of all?

“Even before the beginning of the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ…” (Ephesians 1:4)

If your parents are still alive – call them, send them a card, go see them if you can. Take a trip down “Memory Lane”you’ll be so glad you went along for the ride.

Oh Lord, thank you for my parents. For the way they love me. Thank you for the privilege of spending time with them. And thank you forever, for the love You show me. The love that knows me. The love that died for me. The love that gave me life – and gave me Life Everlasting…

BLOG = “Blessedly Leaning On God!”


  1. Hi Sharon,
    Your Post, bought tears to my eyes. Both my parents passed on some years ago, mum first aged only 56 yrs way back in 1975. My second daughter was born in 1974, so I had to be strong and cope as a mother myself then, I have found it really hard to let go of my daughters - maybe because I didnt have my own mother when they were young and I dont have any sisters. Oh dear enough of that, I too was down memory lane yesterday with the aid of photos. God Bless - Nita

  2. what a precious thing you did Sharon! I am sure both your mom and dad, as well as yourself, enjoyed this so much! Did you happen to take pictures? I would definitely write down anything more about the stories they told this day so you can share them later with your kids and your grandkids (when that happens of course :) Very wise idea you did with this, Sharon!!

    It is hard to see our parents age; mine are both gone, but it is hard to see hubby dealing with his aging parents

    hugs to you!!


  3. I feel sort of teary eyed...I had a few memory lane moments with my mom this weekend too. What a gift you gave to your parents and yourself on that drive.

  4. Hi Sharon -

    Thank you so much for your kind words on my blog yesterday. I sincerely appreciate your sharing and caring.

    I loved this piece. My daddy named his car Betsy. Both of my parents are deceased. I have a cantankerous uncle (my mother's brother) who deep down is a truly good man. I know that the same can be said about your father. Sometimes those types, have "reasons" for their demeanor that only our Lord understands. The Lord promised that He was going to save my uncle and I hold fast to what the Lord promised, in spite of what I observe with my natural eyes and hear with my natural ears.

    I loved that you and your mom were allowed to enter the home that has much sentiment contained for your parents. It was joyous to read how you responded to the visit and the delight of your parents. Your pleasure shone through your telling of the visit.

    I had a similar situation in June of this year when some friends and I drove by the home of my childhood. A man was sittig on the front and I told him that I grew up there. He looked at me like maybe he didn't believe me. I described to him what room was where in the house. Once I did my descriptive narrative, he believed me. Though I was not invited in, I did enjoy expressing to the man what I knew about the inside of his house. The Lord gave me joy that day in that experience.

    Thank you, Sharon, for sharing this about your precious day with your loving parents. It is so impressive to me when adult children invest quality time and love for their parents.

    And I thank our Lord for how precious He is and for how precious we are to Him!!!

  5. Oh my goodness - what a wonderful story - wonderful and how you wrapped it with Jesus was amazing. You do it each time and each time I am shocked and amazed - I still think you are a minister!

    Oh yeah - I loved it too - made me think about my mom and dad now gone - it was so good you got a lot of information because once they die there will be no more.

    And you did something so wonderful for them - I know they loved it.

    And I was thinking about my own son too.


  6. My parents passed away a few years back, but wow, did this post ever find its way into my heart! How awesome that you and your mom got to go inside. Did your dad ever come in? I hope so. I especially love the way you brought this home to how God feels about us, and how a part of us belongs to Him. You have really blessed my socks off!

  7. Hi Sharon -

    It's me again.

    I was not sure if you go back to read your posts' comments from days gone by...

    I'm late off the jump but I posted today, Tuesday November 30, 2010, comments in response to your following pieces:

    Walking with Jesus
    Fan the Flame Friday
    We Are Grateful

  8. I loved this one so much. I'm a memory lane type of person so it hit me in a special place.

    I also love how you speak of your mom's relationship to you and how much it is like God's. I don't think I "got" that until I had my little one growing inside of me. It is a time with each daughter that I cherish more than I can say. To think that GOD feels THAT with me is actually a new thought to me. I should have known it, but once again, you draw out a spiritual truth for me.

    I loved this.
    I loved the description of the day you spent with your parents.

    But now, this car naming notion is just too oddball for me. I can't imagine ANYONE doing that. Nope.

    What would be more oddball yet would be for two soul sisters to have cars with twin names. I dunno... something like Eddie and Ebbie or some such nonsense.

    Someone call Ripleys.

  9. Nita - I am going to officially "adopt" you as my sister across the ocean! OK?! I'm so sorry that you lost your mother so young - that must have been really difficult! But, going down Memory Lane with photos is a wonderful experience too. I have sons, and it's pretty tough letting them go - so I get what you're saying about your daughters. I just think it's a "Mom's Heart."

    Betty - You know what?? Senior moment, did NOT take a camera!! I felt bad about that, but then just decided that this was one of those memories that will live in our hearts. It's good to have my parents - and my sons are living in the apartment over their garage. So, it's also nice to see an inter-generational thing happening, too. Memories and traditions are the glue that helps hold a family together. I'll be trying to spend more time doing these types of activities. And next time I'll REMEMBER the camera, and I'll have to start writing some stuff down!

    Anita - I could tell you have a wonderful relationship with your mom, just by the pictures you took of her and Buster! I still love looking at myself through my mother's eyes - it makes me look perfect, just because she loves me.

    Sandra - Yes, you're so right. My dad IS a good man at heart. Some of his problem, I think, is he's just bored. He really enjoyed this little road trip, and he was a delight to be around. How fun that you got to see your childhood home. It's hard to explain what these kinds of things mean to our hearts, isn't it? And I join you in celebrating the wondrous truth - that we are SPECIAL to the Almighty God! (Love that your dad named his car Betsy. I can almost hear him starting her up in the morning - "C'mon, ol' Betsy. Let's get a move on..."

    More responses to follow...I'm too "chatty" tonight for it all to fit in just one...

  10. Sandie - Sorry your parents are gone. Several comments have mentioned that fact. I guess I'm lucky that mine are still with me. You're right, too - we probably should be telling our own children about our memories. They might be bored to tears, but I know they'll appreciate them as we/they get older. A minister...really?! You're just too sweet to say that (but I appreciate it VERY much!)

    Debby - I'm so glad you enjoyed this. No, my dad didn't go in the house. But when my mom and I came back to the car, I drove us all up the driveway past the house, and into the back where the garage was. My dad appreciated that - evidently, the day after they brought me home, he was late for work, and tired, and backed right into a post of that old garage and nearly knocked the whole thing down! So, he had a good laugh memory at that!! (I just LOVE knockin' socks off!)

    Sandra - I do go back and read comments from "older" posts - I've left "new" responses to your comments. Thanks for doing that!

    Debbie - Oh, my friend. There are SO many things I have learned about the character and the love of God by having my own children. I know something about His love, and something about His heartache. Some of His pride, and some of His dismay. But to know that He has this fierce "I will tear down walls to help My children" feeling about ME - that is priceless. (By the way, called Ripleys - they didn't believe it...) Some things are just too weird even for them...

    GOD BLESS, everyone. Thanks for joining me on this trip down "Memory Lane."

  11. Smiling through my tears...this was so beautiful!

  12. Karen - Oh, thank you. Some moments are just priceless - and they bring tears of joy...



"So [I] have been greatly encouraged in the midst of [my] troubles and suffering, dear brothers and sisters, because you have remained strong in your faith. It gives [me] new life to know that you are standing firm in the Lord. How [I] thank God for you!" (1 Thessalonians 3:7-9)

Thanks for your comments - it is such a joy to be sharing my journey with friends like YOU!

(NOTE: Anonymous comments will be removed. Thank you for understanding.)