My Mom’s Nightly Orange

First of all, let’s just pause for a moment and recognize that it is April 2nd, and I am still writing and posting every day. Yep, two days past the challenge end date. Whew, I am a serious overachiever.

Truly, I am not an overachiever, just an achiever. However, I can hear my husband in my head urging me to keep writing whenever I am just sitting around this Spring Break. It is wonderful to have his encouragement, but also annoying. Mostly because he’s right. Also, there is yet another challenge I am trying to partake in during the month of April called Camp NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month, which is usually in November, but has April as a “camp” to keep the writing going, check it out and hit me up if you’re interested.)

I started a story last summer that I am still working on. It is loosely based on events and people in my life. As the saying goes, write what you know. Of course I see the benefit of writing what you know and writing out of your comfort zone, as with anything in life. But for now I am sticking with what I know until I get this story finished.

While working on this story, I’ve become more aware of childhood memories that randomly pop into my head. Weird little things that stick out, like my mom eating an orange before bedtime. She’d either be sitting in her bedroom or in the living room enjoying some evening television eating an orange as a snack. It wasn’t necessarily the orange that sticks out, but it was more about how she used a paring knife to peel her orange. Then, once eaten, the orange peels were wrapped up in a ball of paper towel. For the final touch she would stick the paring knife into the ball. It would sit there staying in a ball shape with the yellow handle sticking out until she got up to throw it away. I don’t think I ever said anything to her, or anyone else for that matter, about it. I simply remember noticing it, and even today 25+ years later I can picture it vividly. It’s a comfort memory of my childhood. Hmmmm … comfort memories… I sense a story or a poem in my future.

I recently started peeling my sometimes-nightly orange with a paring knife too. It really is easier than just making cuts into the peel and tearing it apart with your fingers. While I haven not begun wrapping my orange in a paper towel ball and stabbing it, I have seen my oldest try to peel his oranges with a knife as well.

I am still in awe of my mom’s ease at doing little things like this. The ball of paper towel and orange peels stabbed with a paring knife is just one of them. It’ll be interesting to see what strange memories my own children have of me 25 years from now.

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