But one thing it does NOT usually hold is a pair of red sunglasses, doll-size, attached to my grandmother's German zither!
I know to whom these glasses belong . . . a certain American Girl doll belonging to Oldest Daughter, long since put up for safekeeping in the closet.
What on earth? Why a pair of red sunglasses? Why on this shelf? Why attached to an antique zither?
Me: Oldest Daughter, can you tell me what these glasses are doing attached to my grandmother's zither?
Oldest Daughter: Ummm, Youngest Daughter threw them at me.
Me: What ??!! Youngest Daughter, what can be the meaning of this?
Youngest Daughter: Oldest Daughter threw them at me first.
Me: Excuse me (voice an octave higher)?? In this home of constant love, tranquility, and joy??? How is this possible?
Oldest Daughter: She wouldn't stay out of my stuff.
Me: And so you felt the best place in the house in which to keep these red sunglasses protected from the ravages of your little sister was attached to the strings of an aging, fragile instrument belonging to your great-grandmother, probably brought over from the Old Country in someone's leather satchel as their most prized possession along with the only other dress they owned?
Oldest Daughter: Ummm . . . yes.
Sisters . . . spatting . . . loving.
And so it goes on through the day. The two Daughters are next spotted shoulder to shoulder, cheek to cheek coloring the skirt of Cinderella's ballgown and her tiny glass slippers, giggling.
A while later I hear howls as Youngest Daughter is dumped unceremoniously outside Oldest Daughter's door, a voice utters sharp scoldings, and the door slams.
I find them yet later cuddled up together on a one-person leather chair, one earbud of an Ipod in Olders' ear, one earbud of the Ipod in Younger's ear, Younger's head snuggled up in the curve of Older's shoulder, sharing a favorite song . . . a "sister" song, they call it.
Not long after, there is a squall of angry voices, a torrent of tears, a stomp of a little foot on the floor, and something that would sound a lot like a kick to the shins . . . if I weren't totally sure it couldn't be . . . in my house. ::sigh::
How could two girls love each other with such abject adoration and then despise each other with such frustated fury. It's the way of sisters.
Man, I love 'em. With all their illogical, tender-hearted, sensible, catty, cherishing ways . I just adore them!
And I've kept a certain pair of red sunglasses on an aging German zither to remind me just how much.