A Quiet Memory

Charlie Puzzle Light BW

Often a memory is the bits and fragments of a thing rearranged and pieced back together after what time has done to the original.  I have a few beloved memories from my own fourth birthday party, of hunting suckers and finding one hidden in my grandfather’s glasses, of singing the theme song to Rainbow Bright while hugging my new doll tightly, and of my baby brother throwing a tantrum when he only got three suckers.  Mom wouldn’t let him steal from my pile, although it surely seemed a reasonable solution to the toddling two-year-old with dusty blonde hair and bright blue eyes.  These memories are a little clearer than most from my earliest of days.  Likely because over the years, we’ve watched these 10 minutes or so of recorded family history a number of times.  Most recently, it was over Thanksgiving that we pulled out the younger versions of ourselves.  My brother’s fiancé hadn’t seen this particular gem, yet.  So we watched, all of us, once again, as my grandfather smiled knowingly with the sucker tucked discretely in his glasses.  It was my cousin, actually, who had found it and not me.  Funny how a video, or an image even, can correct the memories which might otherwise be rewritten.

And, so now this.

Sweetie BW

He’s a little younger than I was in that homemade video and in those memories which are now integrated into my mind and heart.  Just three.  I was four.

Charlie Puzzle Smile BW

Maybe he’ll remember that he loved puzzles when he’s grown.  Maybe he’ll love them still.  Maybe he’ll remember that he was a bright and precocious three-year-old, or maybe the stories we’ll tell will be mostly of how his big emotions and big ideas were often bigger than his tiny little body seemed made to hold.

Charlie Back Light Small BW

But there are these moments, too.  These quiet, focused moments when he is in his zone.  All the drama and unpredictability of being three ceases and the peace and logic of the task takes center stage.

Charlie Front Light Small BW

When the little boy who LOVES TO BE LOUD, thrives in the quiet.

Charlie Puzzle Light BW

And so perhaps, one day he too can look back at these recorded images and remember, and know.

Proud BW

He is loved.



  1. JViola79 says:

    These photos are just precious! He is a beautiful little boy. Praying right along with you that he may always know he was loved! So glad I visited this morning from A Little R & R.

  2. Beautiful! Oh those photos are gorgeous and I love that you’re capturing this side of him. He will cherish this when he is older and, like you, trying to piece together his little days.

  3. Melanie Pennington says:

    So beautiful! Visiting from Imperfect Prose

  4. Leighann Adams says:

    I often wonder what my daughter will remember and if she’ll have fond memories. This was beautiful.

    • Thank you. I’m blown away by what they seem to have already in their memory bank…from the obscure to the profound (at least for a three-year-old). I too wonder what will stick from their childhood.

  5. Love the pics. He’s such a perfect little boy! Isn’t it adorable when they’re in their own world playing peacefully?!

  6. Look at how adorable he is! I think pictures can help us with memories.

  7. They grow too fast! Cherish these memories. What a handsome boy :) Thank you for sharing your sweet post with us at Wine’d Down Wednesday

  8. mamaabby says:

    So, so sweet & beautifully written…I relate to so much with two boys and also the bright pieces of memory and how precious the remembering and the re-telling is:) Bless you Holli!

  9. SO beautiful, Holli. I loved this. Thank you so much for writing something so incredible. He will treasure it forever, and know he is loved :) ~Jenna // A Mama Collective

  10. Precious post. They do grow so fast and I often wonder what my girls will remember from their early childhood days. Found you from the Friday linkup.
    Angela @ Time with A & N

  11. And … he is adorable!

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