Water and Sky
How Does Your Garden Grow

The Boxes

Moms graduation

Kym posted about high school graduation and the keepsake box she received to commemorate the event. Many furniture stores sponsored the program to encourage young ladies to buy a cedar chest (hope chest). My box is almost identical to the one Kym received and I graduated years earlier, but my mother was 20 years older than me and graduated in 1948. I'm grateful to have my mother's graduation picture, as well as her beautiful box.


Her box is has a ornately carved top and it is full of memories, both hers and mine (and perhaps my sisters, too). I remember playing with her box and the jewelry inside. It was fun to wear her dime store earrings and fancy necklaces. 

The hole in the top is from a knot of wood, which is visibly on the inside of the lid. The box is now in my hands and houses a few of treasured items and it is more cherished to me than my own graduation box, which I was surprised to find I still had.  I'm not very attached to high school memories and there is nothing inside. I found my box stashed in the back of a closet and now I wonder if I should even keep it. 


I have a box like that, with my nursing school treasures enclosed. I believe it would be an excellent place to stash a precious skein of yarn while you contemplate what to knit. By the time the decision is reached it would have a lovely fragrance of cedar.

I have one like your plain one, too. Your mom's is beautiful and I'm glad you have it. I have my mom's jewelry box and I definitely cherish that.

Your mother's box is beautiful, and her graduation photo even more so. You look so much like her!

I have a box just like yours. Actually, I have no idea what is in it! If the box isn't bringing you any happiness, then ditch it.

I have no idea what happened to my box! I seem to remember that it may have broken at some point. And like you, the high school memories - meh. Now college...that was a much different story! Your Mom's box is lovely.

Reading this, I went back and forth about your box--it seems too pretty to ditch--it should go if it doesn't mean anything to you. Bottom line, you are the only one who can decide.

I have a box fetish (don't ask me why), and I have lots of boxes with nothing in them. So, I am certainly not the person to give box advice! Your mother's box is beautiful! Surely you could find a use for your box - beads?/embroidery thread?notes from Smith? I hate to see a lovely box go to waste.

Beautiful boxes. I guess this tradition must have been a State side thing. I never received one when I graduated from my American/International high school in Greece. I never found one in my mother's Boston house when she died either. Perhaps hers was appropriated as an artist's pen and pencil box that she replaced over time. Regarding your box and what to do with it? Perhaps gift it to a niece/ nephew upon their collegiate graduations or some other special event with a few memorabilia.

I got a box, too. But it was stolen when our house was burglarized. :(

I had a box like yours... and ditched it a while back. I love the idea of a box full of treasures, but I can't imagine what it would hold. Your mom's box is a beautiful piece...no matter what's inside.

I never received a box like that at graduation (never heard of it until Kym's post) and, like you, I'd have no cherished high school memories to keep inside.

I did, however, buy a box similar to yours many years ago and for a long time it was my jewelry box.

Your mother's box is lovely! I have my mom's, which looks like yours. I like to keep bottles of ink in mine.

I have my keepsake box (very much like yours) from 1972 and my mother's who graduated in 1946. Hers is carved and ornate like your mother's but is a different carving.

Your mom's box is very cool!

You should keep it - surely there's SOMETHING you can store in a wooden box?

I LOVE your Mom's box! What a treasure! (My mom has one, too. Her's is much more interesting than mine -- it's made of little cedar planks with dovetail joints at the corners.) I think you should keep yours, too. They make really wonderful little storage units!

I have the plain one like yours, and it used to have stuff in it, but I'm not sure that it does any more. It holds no meaning for me, though, so I should probably give it up too. But your mother's is much more interesting, and more precious for its memories.

I have a box like that, as well, but for the life me cannot remember where it came from. I know it wasn't high school, although I have few memories from high school, too. I love your Mom's graduation picture. Our mother's must have grown up around the same time. I think Mom graduated in 1944. Thanks for sharing your memory, Sweetie.

Keep them both!! I wish I'd had something like that.

My mom had a regular sized hope chest (probably acquired after she got married - it's much more her adult style), but not one of those small ones. I know someone (my great-aunt?) had one and used to keep important stuff in it, and I love that idea. I remember it was plain, like the one in the back of your photo.

I have the plain one like yours. They were so beautifully made.

I really like these boxes, and love the sharing of memories. Like you, I am not really too attached to high school memories, although I suppose you could keep the box and use it for other keepsakes, or whatever you like. Of course, you know best whether it is time for this box to live a life elsewhere. xoxo

what a treasure to hold!! My mom doesn't have anything like that. But I do have her first holy communion book and purse. Unfortunately it is fragile and not in good condition, however, it is mine :)

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