Honoring Your Family’s Legacy

When my father passed away in 2015, my sister and I took on the laborious process of going through everything that he and my mother had left behind in the apartment where they had lived for 40 years. (You can read more about that experience in Home is Where the Heart Is.)

Among the few things I brought home were two pieces of jewelry that I had never seen before. One was a tie clip that my teenage mother had given my father before they were even married. It had his initials (JL) and was accompanied by a note saying, “Because I love you.” I had never seen my father wear this tie clip and I didn’t know it existed. The other was a ring with several small diamonds that might have also predated my parents’ marriage, as I never saw my mother wear it.

I sat on these items for several years, not sure what I wanted to do with them. Recently, I reached out to my colleague Jane Becker of JB Jewels, to whom I have referred several of my clients when they wanted to remake jewelry. I knew that I wanted to turn the tie clip into a necklace but wasn’t sure what to do with the ring. Jane and I discussed some of the possibilities and ultimately decided to remove the stones from the ring and turn them into a unique pair of earrings.

My father’s tie clip is now a necklace

I recently received my new jewelry and was delighted with the results. I feel so good that these pieces that my parents saved for over 60 years have been given new life. Jane wrote about my new pieces (including photos) in her latest newsletter, which you can read here.

I’ve seen so many of my clients hold on to items that came from their parents and grandparents, burdened by the space they take up but not using them and not wanting to part with them. If this sounds like you, then I urge you to think about how you can make some of these items work for you. Don’t let them be sources of guilt when they can instead be wellsprings of joy.