Jun 3, 2012

Rosary Model & Memories


This is one of the 18 rosary prototypes.  The models were made to determine length of time to make, understand all the supplies needed to string the beads with the appropriate spacing, how the crucifix and the center piece would work when compared to the bead size, and the overall weight and look and feel. 
So far three have sold.   I am visiting a few stores associated with Catholic churches in Atlanta that last summer told me they would be interested in selling the rosaries, they wanted to see samples.  We also have a church in Las Vegas that may sell them and also they will be sold on the ETSY site.  

The next batch of rosaries will be available at the end of summer.  Barbara, the Bead Lady, as we call her,  the bead vendor at the Somanya market that Mawuvio's purchases all their beads in bulk from, her brother George made the initial prototypes. We're going to ask George to come to the after school beading program and teach the children how to make the rosaries.  Imagine the possibilities with multi-color versions or two toned rosaries, blue beads complementing yellow or orange beads, or green complementing brown, there are so many possibilities.  

Rosaries have been part of my life since I can remember. My great Grandmother, Abuela Enriqueta used to pray with a rosary all the time. When I visited my grandparents finca outside of Panama City, I remember Abuela Enriqueta, frail, in her mid 80's,  she used to walk  slow because her sight was almost gone, she never bumped into anything. My Grandma Chichi, (her daughter) said she knew were everything was, the furniture, the steps, the walkway to see the chickens, the gates; she never tripped, fell or bumped into anything.  I remember the rosary traveling through her fingers, many times I thought it was a race, who could say the prayers fastest,  the beads intended to  keep track of where you were in the race.  

My Grandma's sister, Aunt Beatriz, also prayed the rosary daily, and I mean everyday of her life.  She  always had a rosary with her.   My Grandma Arosemena had beautiful rosaries, a gold and silver one I remember, she kept them in a special case with her jewelry.  

My Mother when she died, the picture forever in my mind, when we said our last goodbyes, when I reached over into the casket to kiss her, she had a beautiful gold rosary in her hands. The rosary complemented her dress; as child I wondered, how is she holding on to the rosary?  

My other vivid rosary memory, the nuns at the Colegio Internacional de Maria Inmaculada, (the school I attended in Panama up until 6th grade, when we moved to the US), the nuns at the school had rosary belts.  The accessorized their habits with rosaries that hung around their waist.  I was with those nuns every day, my favorite, Madre Blandina in first grade.  From her class I learned to love NAPS.  We got to take one everyday after lunch,  if you were well behaved you were selected to take your nap up front laying on this huge bench we had in the classroom with your head on a pillow, while all the other students napped by putting their head down on their desk. Yes I got to nap on the big wooden bench many times. 

Rosaries, for some a string of beads to count prayers, for others a daily devotion associated with the Roman Catholic faith, for me a rosary holds vivid memories of family, school, life in Panama, visits to Linda Vista, my Arosemena Grandparents finca, memories associated with love, faith, family and prayer.