Wednesday, August 8, 2012

nails, polish, and all that girly stuff …

Yesterday, my youngest niece left the world of childhood and jumped daringly into the world of teen-hood.

Given her southern california roots, it was quite an act love when her family drove her north on i-5 in order to celebrate this momentous occasion with her family.  And for that, I am grateful.

I don’t get to see my sweet cousin enough, nor do I check-in nearly enough via the numerous avenues as are now readily available thanks to the wide world of social networking.  And I hate myself for it.

But that’s what led me to really think about what I wanted to give her for her birthday.  She is no longer a little girl, but she’s not yet a woman (oh dear, never thought I’d reference a Britney Spears song in my blog).  I want her to enjoy her youth and not race towards the next stage of life that promises freedom … or the illusion of it, rather.  We live in a world where girls leave childhood behind before they have the chance to experience it.  And I told her that in my card.  I also told her, that elegance and class are seen as fashion trends, instead of qualities to pursue.  And that, my friends, is a shame.

I did my best to put together a “Teenage Girl’s Survival Kit” … full of all the fun girly things necessary for life as a lady … while attaching tid-bits of advice from her older, grey-hair-going, cousin.  You know, things like, your parents are actually on your side, contrary to popular belief (as is established by most teens these days); and guard your heart, you’ll be softer because of it, etc.

(I should have taken a picture of my survival kit … it looked pretty cute, if you ask me)

One of the things I included was a travel sized pack of nail files.  this may seem silly to anyone who was not raised under the teachings of Barbara Richardson (the quintessential lady, in my opinion).  you see, Barbara, or as I affectionately referred to her, Omie, was the epitome of class and elegance.  She was calm, passionate, strong, tender, proper, kind, forgiving, hospitable, and nearly every other quality of the noble woman as described in Proverbs 31.  and we are blessed to have had her as an example.

now back to the nail files … I’m not sure if it was something she was taught in her etiquette classes or not (yes, ladies, they actually took classes on etiquette … what a novel concept, right?), but she always had a nail file by her side.  by her chair, in her purse, in every drawer of the kitchen and each bathroom; a nail file was no further than a reach. and because of her obsession with the beauty tool, her nails were always perfect.  sometimes they were painted and sometimes not; but they were always beautiful. 

I’m sure, if I though hard enough, I could think of some sort of metaphor or analogy to her nails and the nail file, but work has nearly fried my brain, so I’m not going to think much more about it.

I just loved hearing the resounding remarks of agreement when kate opened the package of nail files, from all of the women in the family.  nice nails are a part of being a lady.  they aren’t reserved for school girls anymore … it can be a beautiful accessory that compliments the “lady” in all of us.  painted or not.

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