I was doing a daily necessary simple task.....sweeping my store on Wednesday morning before we opened. Preparing my store for whomever walks in the door is a comforting learned joy for me.
My mind wandered to my longtime co-worker and friend, Lynn Heitman who passed from this temporal life in the night from complications of a subarachnoid hemorrhage. You may remember Lynn, a constant, seated at the marble table pricing in the back apron/oilcloth room.
Lynn started working at Pryde’s when I was in 8th grade (43 years ago) and literally on and off for years has priced just about everything in our vast store. She was a powerful and passionate personality and most memorable to me at an impressionistic age.
I also (at 13) remember her not so fondly for critiquing my gift wrapping bows and coffee making skills. She was fastidious sometimes in a maddening sense and a stickler for perfection in even the smallest task. Lynn taught me many things in those formative days and continued to do so in the years to come.
She realized the importance of a good cup of coffee and the connectability it offers. She also recognized the anticipation of “setting the table” for the day to come. I am convinced that preparedness is an essential key to a peaceful and happy heart.
Pryde’s is layered with wonderful people like Lynn.
Saint Mother Teresa of Calcutta said - “There are many people who can do big things. But there are very few people who will do the small things."
Lynn delighted in the small things, surprising people with her exquisite personally-made jewelry and relished in helping organize a birthday lunch with her famous chicken salad. She was a saver, a terrific cook and a purely dedicated Wife and Mother.
SMALL THINGS. That is what you and I should do for each other.
Lynn and I were always the most prepared for Christmas in the gift giving sense. I remember sharing with her 20 years ago after an exhaustive retail season that I had spent Christmas Eve crying and wrapping my children’s gifts. She said,
“OH NO! Why would you do that to yourself?”
I remembered her scolding words of wisdom and declared to NEVER again! She taught me to “shop all year long.” Another wisdom engrained in me by so many
Time is fleeting and shortened days unexpected. Friendships and relationships are a gift.
Today, TAKE TIME to look at those surrounding your life. Thank them for all they are and do.
I will never open a box at Pryde’s without thinking of Lynn’s childlike surprise anticipating what is inside. We honor her loyalty, generosity and dedication to even the most simple task and will miss her boisterous laugh, spirited wit and bountiful presence.
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