Every aspect of my life has been affected by big change over the years — my family, my home, my health — which is why I enjoy reminiscing about the parts of my past that seemed so constant, like shopping with my mom at Discoveries.
Discoveries was a home store on E Street between Second and Third streets in downtown Davis, my favorite all year long but especially during the holiday season. It was full of everything you could ever want … candles, soaps, toys, books, art, furniture and more. They had the best gift wrappers around who created these perfect handmade bows, a sure sign that you were getting a Discoveries gift before it was even opened.
Every year, just after Thanksgiving, my parents would take me and my little brother there to choose new ornaments for our Christmas tree. I remember excitedly entering Discoveries’ front door with its worn brass handle, a wreath and even a bell. The store was always warm and perfectly lit, full of happy shoppers and the smell of apple cider, cinnamon and spice.
We’d scurry past the room full of kitchenware and head straight up the wide, creaky wooden steps to the top floor, transformed into a seasonal wonderland with racks and racks of beautiful ornaments. My brother and I each got to choose just one so we carefully inspected them all to make sure we picked the very best. Inevitably, I would choose a horse of some sort and my brother a train, which we’d have our dad hang high upon the tree.
Years later, when my parents split up and divvied our family belongings, my brother and I each got to take a few of our favorite ornaments. Those are still my most treasured and the ones that always find a special place when my husband and I decorate our own tree.
They remind me of a very simple time in my life, when happiness was a family outing to find something so small that meant so much. They remind me that although everything changes, we can tuck away our most sacred memories to open and share, just like those special gifts from Discoveries.