Mason Jars & Small Change

For a while there before Daddy got sick, we would all drive down together from
time to time and take my great aunt to lunch.  Or she’d take us.  There would be
a fight about who was going to pay many times.  I took great delight in sneaking
up and paying before anyone else, but my aunt soon figured it out, and the
cashier sold me out, so that was that.  My parents, my aunt, my children, and I
would go to the buffet down by the railroad tracks in this small town in south
Georgia.  We’d fill up a table and load it up with good Southern eats.  Collard
greens were a favorite of mine as I don’t cook them often.  Mama and my aunt
loved the real banana pudding with meringue on top and would be greatly
concerned if we were much after 11:30 arriving, as once the pan was empty, there
was no more.  (And no one wanted to be responsible for that!)  Daddy would
wander over and get himself a piece of the coconut cake, of which Mama would
always be given one bite.  I have made his Mama’s recipe for years, but he
always preferred the taste of the coconut cake from the buffet.  Go figure.

I have always loved the environment in that place.  Folks in everything
from suits to overalls.  Bankers, teachers, grandparents with granchildren,
farmers, retirees–all gathered together in this microcosm of small town
America–to eat, to catch up, to give and receive hugs and handshakes, and to
support each other.  It was never more precious to me than when we were living
out of the country and I’d come home to visit.  I just loved that
place!

One of my favorite things there were the jars on the checkout
counter.  The cashier was the owner of the place and the head cook.  She’d sit
up on a stool greeting folks, having done a majority of the cooking before folks
got there.  She’d always ask how things were, how your family was, what you’d
been up to…..sweet lady.  Her counter was full of cards and brochures from
area folks and businesses and there was always at least one or two jars up there
too.  On the jar would be a picture of a local person who needed help with the
cost of treatment for their cancer or someone who was raising money to help a
family rebuild a home that had burned down.  Those jars touched my heart just as
the suits and overalls did.  They were a big part of my growing up.  I love
going in local places and seeing those jars…..the community’s way of reaching
out to someone and saying, “You matter.  I care.  It’s a little bit I got, but
what I got is yours.”

It’s amazing how small change can bring about big
change and can shed all kinds of light in our world.  Showing others we care
about their struggles and hardships.  Lighting the way when things get dark, and
never letting them feel alone.

Good stuff.  All from small change dropped
in a Mason jar.

One thought on “Mason Jars & Small Change

  1. Pingback: ‘Cause Mama Said | I Might Need A Nap

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