Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Legacy VII: A Long Line of Love

The Legacy Series continues this week with a post from one of my favorite people in the whole wide world, Relyn Lawson.  If you don't know Relyn (pronounced ruh-Lynn), you'll love getting to know her at Come Sit By My Fire, where she shares family stories, tales about teaching, her beautiful photographs, her passion for lists (which inspires me more than I can say), her LOVE of good books, and so much more.  In her honor, I thought about creating a list of all the reasons why I adore her, but the list began to grow longer than her post itself!  Even though Relyn and I have never met in person, I feel like I already know her, not to mention her wonderful husband Jeffrey and her magical daughter Sloane, who just turned nine yesterday.  I sometimes find myself wishing that I'd had a teacher like Relyn when I was growing up, but then I stop, pinch myself, and realize I am blessed to have a friend and teacher like her right now.


A long line of love
When Gigi invited me to participate in her Legacy series, I was just delighted.  Excited, too.  As the series went on, I began to feel more and more humble.  What amazing company to be in.  Thank you, dear Gigi, for including me among such a luminous gathering of women.

If you were to look around my home for a tangible legacy, you wouldn’t find much.  Oh, I have my Grandpa Chrisner’s old turkey roaster and a red Prince Albert tobacco can.  I have my Mamaw’s carnival glass serving plate and her collection of now-vintage hankies.  I have copies of my mother-in-law’s recipes with a promise of her recipe tin some day.  I have a quilt my mother made for me when I was a little, little girl.  From my aunt, I have a picture I adore of my parents when they were engaged.  

I don’t have antique quilts or sterling silver passed down through generations.  I don’t have boxes of old photos and yellowing letters.  It seems that my family is not of the magpie variety.  Most of the old and faded in my home comes from the local flea market or used bookstore.  

But, if you were to look closer, to look at me instead of my home… ah.  That’s a different story.  

I have my Grandpa’s love of story.  I have the same devilish twinkle he and my father sometimes get; a twinkle that really should serve as a warning.  I have my Mamaw’s sense of humor and love of laughter.  I have my mother’s love of beauty and home.  I have my mother-in-law’s greatest success – her son.  I have the passionate spirit that my parents always cherished.  I have a deep and abiding love for education that my father modeled with each degree he earned.  

I’ve been thinking, of course, about the legacy I will leave for my own daughter.  Will she learn to love learning as I did?  Will she know, bone deep, that a beautiful, peaceful home is a haven for your family?  Will she laugh at every opportunity?  Oh, I hope so.  

But there is something else, something far more important that I hope to leave with Sloane.  I want her to know how to have a good marriage.  I believe it is the greatest gift this life offers.  My parents, and Jeffrey’s, have shown us just how good life can be.  Together, our parents share 93 years of marriage.  It makes me think of that old country song, I come from a long line of love.  Yes, a long line of love.  

Of course, our parents were given this legacy as their own, too.  My Dad’s mother was paralyzed and completely bed-ridden from her early thirties till the end of her life.  At her funeral over 30 years later, my elderly grandfather stood at the head of her coffin the entire service.  When asked if he would please sit down he said, “Son, I stood by your mother for more than 30 years.  I’ll see it through.”

I’ll see it through.  

Yes.  I come from a long line of love.  


  1. Oh my heart! What a beautiful post, Relyn. From that wonderful first picture to that last part about your grandparents which just gave me such a lump in my throat. I too am blessed with rock solid love stories on all sides, as is my husband. A legacy I do often give thanks for, for my children. Thank you so much for sharing this heart-warming little piece of you.

    And thank you, Gigi! I too am honoured to have been included in this stellar cast of woman. C x
    Ps. LOVE the new winter banner. Just gorgeous. :-)

  2. How beautiful and lovely is this

  3. This is just so incredibly beautiful and of course it made me cry too. Thank you for sharing Relyn's beautiful legacy of love.

    xo Mary Jo

  4. That was so beautiful! xxoo :)

  5. Relyn, you are such a sweetheart. (I agree with Gigi: if only everyone could have you for their elementary school teacher!)

    I know several bloggers who struggle bravely and mightily to overcome their damaged pasts -- their lack of "a long line of love." I sense such a "wholeness" (I can't think of a better word for it) and loving sincerity in you. I feel grateful that your students, and child, and blog-friends get some of that reflected light. Gigi, thanks again for providing this forum. (and your new autumnal header is gorgeous)

  6. I'll see it through....what a legacy indeed
    And I add my words of admiration for you and your blog
    sharing so much in life that is good and honorable and loving
    and I love how you make yourself cry
    oh you are a sweetie....thanks for being you

  7. oh my....i completely welled up.

    and i love her too

  8. Relyn, such a touching ending! Gave me that catch in my throat and made me teary-eyed. How wonderful to learn even more about you. You are a joy to 'know'. Thank heavens for your parents who instilled such beauty and compassion in your heart that we are able to share in what you so freely give. Thank you for being you!

  9. this is so beautiful and touching. i feel so blessed to have come across Relyn's blog some 3 years ago and honored that she took me in as her friend. her blog name, "come sit by my fire" , invited me to visit - that simple title speaks it all - comforting and warm and sincere - a loving home. always a pleasure to visit.

  10. You come from a long line of love....
    Breathtakingly beautiful.

  11. Relyn, What a wonderful legacy. One I wish I had. But then we each have our own stories and legacy's, that is what makes each person unique. Thanks for sharing.

  12. Oh, Relyn, what a lovely story. Your words warm my heart time and time again.

  13. Relyn ~

    I know it isn't right to choose favorites, but in this instance, I have to because I LOVE love, and your words, your memories, and your story touched my heart beyond anything I have read in a long time. Marriage is so important to me, and most likely because my parents didn't make it past 17 years. Therefore, I yearn (and happily look forward) to "see it through" because true love is worth it.


  14. Oh, my Relyn...How well you express the LOVE! Tears in my eyes as I read. I find myself thinking now of the line of love I come from and am thankful for it. Thankful to you, too, Gigi, for this Legacy series of your. I learn so much, and think so much! And must thank you too for your wonderful comment left at my placer earlier this week and sharing so much about your creative path. :o) Happy Day ((HUGS))

  15. Dear Relyn...this is so beautiful! This is the kind of legacy that really matters in the end. How fortunate you are to have a legacy of love...

    and Gigi...thanks for this just keeps getting better:)

  16. Relyn...I am continually inspired & moved by your wonderful words. What a wonderful wonderful post. You've brought me to tears again & made me think of the legacy of love I too have in my life. THANK YOU, THANK YOU!

  17. ... I am so inspired by your writing..thank you for sharing your heart always..gigi love this series!!

  18. Oh. My.
    This is absolutely beautiful, Relyn. You just beam LOVE. It infects everyone around you. Even those of us who can't see or know you personally...we aren't immune either...we all feel love when we have been around you in some form, and I can't tell you how grateful I am for that.
    That last paragraph...oh, that moved me so.
    Just beautiful.

  19. Oh Relyn, your words just made me weep. What a great legacy love is! So precious. And how lucky your daughter is.

  20. Oh Relyn- you made me cry with your words- YOU are such a beautiful person! Sloane is so very lucky!

  21. Relyn, I was deeply touched by your legacy of love story. Simply beautiful!

    Gigi, you have a lovely blog and I look forward to reading more.


Thank you so much for visiting and for taking the time to leave a comment! I love hearing from you.