Monday, August 10, 2009

16th Edition of Smile for the Camera--Bling

As a family-we are pretty much blingless.On my moms side there is my great-grandfather ElmondAlphonsa Arnold who was a jeweler.But I think that may have been more of a watchmaker,repairman than what we think of as jeweler today.But moms ancestors are plain,sturdy,southern stock.No bling in the few pictures I have of them. Dads Spanish/Mexican Californiano people would have lost anything they might have had that was bling in the battle to just survive the changing world they lived in.And the frontier life of Early California would have saw little use for decoration. Now I love bling.I don't live the kind of life nor have the funds for the real variety of bling but I do have a nice collection of costume jewelry that is great fun though I no longer add to it,to expensive and I really have no room for more.But here I decided to take a picture of the few family pieces I have and some little trinkets that have sentimental value that I hope will be passed on for that reason alone. The jewelry box belonged to my mother.She saw it in a store window every night when she walked home from her waitress job in Stockton Ca. in the mid 1950's.That jewelery box cost a weeks wages.Mom was not one to hang on to things and the only reason this is still in the family is she eventually gave it to her mother who later gave it back to me. The ring on the left was my moms,a gift from a boyfriend before my dad,it is the only "fine" jewelery in the picture.A pierdot set in platinum with diamonds.The other ring is my birthstone and was my 16Th birthday gift from my parents. The little dog pin was a birthday gift from my Aunt Delfino,anyone remember Sarah Coventry jewelery? The Thunderbird was a souvenir from the Thunderbird Hotel in Las Vegas,it hung on my parents keys on and off for years until they gave it to me to play with. The mustard seed was given to me by a elderly couple that lived across the street from the little grocery store in the Stockton neighborhood were we lived from my birth till about age 7-8.Their names were Bea and Russel and they also gave me my first bible,oddly enough,they were Jewish.My parents had a number of elderly friends,I was taught to honor my elders from the beginning. The mans ring my father wore before he died and the little turtle pin I won as a child. The pin in the center belonged to my fathers mother,Estella Garcia Ruse Velasquez,the only thing we have of hers. The elephant pin was a souvenir of the San Francisco Zoo from a grade school trip I took. The rhinestone bracelet was a dime store purchase I made for my mother one mothers day. My late,former mother-in-law Juanita Marie Parker Hussey was a wonderful woman that I still miss a great deal.The dress watch at the top was a engagement gift from her future husband Martin Steven Hussey in the early 1950's.The bottom watch belong to my maternal grandmother May Pearl Arnold Byers. Yes,the tiny,beaded baby bracelet is mine.As many times as we moved when I was growing up it's a miracle any of this stuff is still in my possession. Oh,and the Tiara?In this family!?That's me wearing it about the second grade in the Halloween parade at school.It was purchased just for my Halloween costume at J.C. Penney's in downtown Stockton in the mid 1960's.My daughter wore it for one Halloween when she was growing up and both of my granddaughters have worn it for Halloween since then.My grandson will be a year old this September.I need to figure out a way to incorporate that tiara into a costume for him before he gets old enough to figure out what I'm up to.It's tradition!

1 comment:

amyrebba said...


WElcome to genealogy blogging. I've loved and enjoyed genealogy since 2006 and started my blog the same year. The discription and title of yours caught my eye though. I grew up in Modesto, CA. I now live in Idaho. But I know that Hwy 99 area. My family were the Okie that came to CA starting with the dust bowl and the rest coming in about the 60's. On both sides and even my husbands family it's only about three generations though, counting us. I'll look forward to reading more of your stories.