Beginnings, Jergen’s Lotion & Celeste Ng Novels

Though the week begins on Sunday, to me Monday seems more like a day of beginnings. I used to schedule my week according to household tasks beginning on Monday.

Washing laundry would be one day, cleaning another, etc.

I no longer do that, because there is no one living here but me and Ivy.

The girls’ softball jerseys don’t need to be washed in order to be ready for the next game.

Supper doesn’t have to be prepared for girls who swear they’re hungry and starving by 4 p.m., though they’ve been snacking since they got home from school.

I used to iron all my first husband’s clothing, shirts, and pants. He was a college instructor and liked to look nice standing in front of his classes. Ironing always took hours to do.

So now Monday rolls around and my schedule these days, aside from physical therapy, is pretty much empty.

The day unrolls in front of me with nothing really to do. Or that I need to do. Except for writing this post of course.

Writing my daily post begins the structure of my day, my morning routine. It is always at the top of the list and I’m thinking about it as I prepare my cup of decaf coffee. Wondering what I will write about.

Jergens Lotion:

I recently ordered Jergens lotion, though I hadn’t bought it in a long time.

As soon as I pumped it into my hands, the glorious scent filled the air and reminded me of another time.

The original Jergens scent is cherry almond. It is a scent that stays with you.

I looked up the history of Jergens lotion to see when it was first put on the market.

The Andrew Jergens Company began in 1882 in Cincinnati, Ohio, as the Jergens Soap Company. By the turn of the 20th century, the company had expanded to include a number of beauty care and cosmetic products, and would soon launch its most famous product, Jergens Lotion.

Jergen’s lotion has a scent like no other. Somehow the smell of cherry almond lotion brings my childhood into play, though I don’t recall ever having it in our house.

It elicits a memory that I can’t quite grasp.

What I’m Now Reading:

I love books. I would choose a stack of unread books over a box of chocolates.

Last night I began reading “Everything I Never Told You” by Celeste Ng.

It isn’t a new book, as it was published in 2014. I became curious about her books when I saw she has a new one titled “Our Missing Hearts.”

I knew I was going to love “Everything I Never Told You” from the first page.

Don’t let the beginning turn you away if you haven’t read this book. Because it’s not a thriller. It is a story about family.

The First Paragraph Of The Book:

Lydia is dead. But they don’t know this yet. 1977, May 3, six thirty in the morning; no one knows anything but this innocuous fact: Lydia is late for breakfast. As always, next to her cereal bowl, her mother has placed a sharpened pencil and Lydia’s physics homework, six problems tagged with small ticks. Driving to work, Lydia’s father nudges the dial toward WXKP, Northwest Ohio’s Best News Source, vexed by the crackles of static. On the stairs, Lydia’s brother yawns, still twined in the tail end of his dream. And in her chair in a corner of the kitchen, Lydia’s sister hunches moon-eyed over her cornflakes, sucking them to pieces one by one, waiting for Lydia to appear. It’s she who says at last: “Lydia’s taking a long time today.”

But Lydia isn’t there. She never slept in her bed the night before, as her mother soon realizes.

Where Is Lydia:

From the first page of this book, I wondered why I had not read any of this author’s novels. I’d watched “Little Fires Everywhere” on TV. Why hadn’t I delved into her books, of which there are now 3?

Even though I watched “Little Fires Everywhere” with Reese Witherspoon and Kerry Washington on TV, I now want to read the book.

I read nearly 100 pages of “Everything I Never Told You” last night. And it was readily apparent to me that this writer is extremely talented. The book, it seems, is almost always better than TV, though it was excellent.

So I immediately ordered, “Little Fires Everywhere.” Because Celeste Ng’s words, if it if were possible, are melodious. As crisp and sweet as birdsong.

I believe that she is one of those writers who could write a grocery list and I would be enthralled by it.

Are you a fan of Celeste Ng’s novels?

{This post contains affiliate links}

1Shares

Similar Posts

26 Comments

  1. I loved your post. I so agree about the scent(s) bringing back goodtime memories…hopefully, always the good. :0). . ! My Mom always kept Jergens hand lotion beside the kitchen sink, and as we grew up and helped with the dishes..(my sisters and I..wonder why those brothers never helped..hmm, I think we all know they were never trained to do so)… Well, anyhew..I, too, would use the lotion after dishwashing! The next drugstore visit..I plan to look for some Jergens and try some again..for old times sake. I hope its not like some products…in which the manufacturers are slipping and changing..not for the better. Your routine back then sounds like my Mom’s was..certain days..certain chores..along with whatever else came up in life. I grew up as a working girl/and Mother, and mine was more a whatever kind of lifestyle..to get me through it. I remember being so exhausted at times..and saying I wish the World would just top and let me off for a while..(not forever..just a break, lol).. I think women have a lot on them no matter what..and of course a good man does, too, taking care of a Family. The day I loved most back as a child was Saturday..as it was “got to town” day, and then Sunday was church and Family day. Hmm..I still love weekends and not a Monday fan..even though I am now retired. Cheers to hardworkers and also to those who are schedule keepers of any kind. I tend to rise and shine on a schedule of a bit..what my body tells me and thats all for now. Have a blessed day and thanks for taking us back. :0) Glad your health is improving and you are becoming a bit back more mobile..prayers for more success on that one.

  2. Monday starts my week, too. It always has. I guess that’s carried over from the full-time work days.

    I’ve always loved the scent of Jergens, too. There’s something about that familiar cherry-almond smell. My mom and grandmas didn’t use it (at least, I don’t think they did), but whenever I smelled it, I always liked it.

    I don’t like ironing. I only do it when I have to. Though on rare occasions, I’ll iron our pillowcases when I put fresh sheets on the bed, simply because it looks so nice. My mom always ironed literally everything and still does. Her dining room table always has an ironed tablecloth on it and there’s always ironed napkins, too.

    I’d rather have a stack of books over a box of chocolates, too! I’ve read Celeste Ng and I’m looking forward to reading her newest book.

  3. Hi everyone! I hope everyone had a good Halloween. I only got 14 kids, and I kept my light on until 10pm, so I was a little disappointed. I set up my table outside with my candy and also a witch hat ring toss for the kids to play. The few that came early enjoyed it. After that, the mosquitos chased me indoors. I’ve always liked the smell of Jergens lotion. It’s interesting how a smell can transport you back in time and evoke memories. Although the week technically begins on Sunday, I usually consider Monday the beginning of the week, because people go back book to work and kids go back to school. And because of that, I’d try to get the laundry done on the weekends and ready for the new week. Plus I also wanted clean bedding and bath towels for the week.

  4. I remember my mother’s Shalimar perfume to this day. My mother was a housewife with a husband and four daughters. Her only dress up days were a Friday night date with my father and Sunday church. I remember her misting on that Shalimar and looking so beautiful in her good clothes.
    It was always on her Christmas list and was the only indulgence she had.

  5. From the internet: “Scents bypass the thalamus and go straight to the brain’s smell center, known as the olfactory bulb. The olfactory bulb is directly connected to the amygdala and hippocampus, which might explain why the smell of something can so immediately trigger a detailed memory or even intense emotion. In an article I once read, the author spoke of the memories triggered by the smell of Prell shampoo, and of memories of her grandfather from smelling a saddle. Personally, the smell of Evening in Paris perfume evoked vivid memories of buying the scent for my Mother for Christmas.

  6. Brenda, happy halloween.
    We don’t get trick or treaters. our neighborhood is very dark. I think most of the kids go to the village.
    I am not familiar with that book but to be honest I probably would not read it, I do not like scary books.
    As for a schedule, Monday is the start of the week for me. I usually “rest, recuperate and organize on Sunday for Monday.
    Have a great week!

  7. I do more of my reading when my schedule isn’t as hectic and that is usually during winter, so I have my books piling up. I love to read, but as of late haven’t had a lot of time for it. I’m also usually out-of-town when Halloween rolls around. Once we wound up in a town where there was a pirate festival that we were unaware of. It was right after Halloween, but it was befitting to the region. I called it an un-Halloween, although it was both eerie and fun to see people dressed up like pirates. I love to travel and get out of town, if I can, although the past few years have made that much more difficult. More than anything I love going to the mountains and being up in the high country, if I can make that happen.

  8. Happy Halloween to everyone here, as well. I live in a subdivision filled with children so I’m sure there will be many out and about.
    Monday has always been the start of my week, as well. I can’t remember when I wasn’t working until I retired 6 years ago. Even then I had a schedule of things to accomplish as the week wore on. Sundays were my day to work on my preferred hobbies. Saturdays were always errand day. And now I have all the freedom in the world, so I do things whenever I feel like it. LOL
    More good reading suggestions, Brenda! Thank you so much!
    Ah, Jergens. I remember the scent because my mother always had a small bottle in her purse.

  9. Jergen’s is my absolute favorite hand cream.
    For some reason, the only almond scented cream available.
    Although I could be wrong.
    Haven’t tried any of the newer scents.
    Will check them out though.
    Celeste’s books must be excellent if you are enjoying this one.
    Always great to find an author that writes interesting stories.
    In time Brenda, you will be well again to do more things.
    I’m sure of it.
    Several friends & family members have had hip and knee surgeries.
    Takes a long time to heal.
    Enjoyed reading your post today.
    Any Trick Or Treaters 🎃 in your neighborhood later on?

  10. Yes, a scent can take you back to another time of your life. Jergens is smart to market the original scent – nostalgia pulls in a lot of interest.
    I haven’t read any of Celeste Ng’s book but will go online with my library to reserve this one. And then probably the others. I love Gail Tsukiyama’s books – a simple, yet beautiful style of writing and characters you care about. The Samurai’s Garden is a good start. Also Barbara Pym – love her!
    Happy Halloween to you and Ivy.

  11. Brenda, Jergens also makes moisturizing hand soap with the same scent. Dollar Tree sells it, although finding it is sporadic with the supply chain issues. Amazon also sells it.

  12. I never had a schedule of cleaning, I just got things done in between working and taking care of my kids. I usually got things done after they went to sleep. I would make big meals so we would have leftovers for a couple of days. I always made a home cooked meal and there would always be cookies or some kind of dessert.

    My kids would always beg me for a frozen meal at the grocery store. It would embarrass me bc the way ppl would look at me thinking I wasn’t feeding my kids! Lol

    If they only knew. They always had friends over every weekend. My house was the one where all the neighbors wanted to gather. We played board games or watched movies and I always made some yummy treats. The neighbors always knew where their kids were and I was a single Mom with a lot of patience! Lol

    Happy Halloween everyone!

  13. Monday starts my week. When I was growing up, Sunday was considered the 7th day, the day of rest, and here I am at 71 and it still seems fitting. On Mondays I do my 1 mile round trip hike to/from the supermarket, and then on Thursdays. If I need more things from the supermarket – like when I was shopping for Halloween treats, I’ll do the trek on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. We have a night-time neighborhood Halloween between 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. on 10/29 and I got a lot of kids this year, many with parents escorting, but even though I worried I didn’t buy enough treats, I have plenty of left-overs, so I’ve been munching on a variety of M&Ms and mini-candy bars. I noticed many homes of my neighbors across the street were dark – only homes with their porch lights on and with the orange pumpkin flyer taped to the mail box are signals to trick or treaters that the home is participating. It was even more homes dark this year than last year – because of inflation and people didn’t want to spend the money for some candy? Because my neighbors, some of whom are older but many of whom are years younger than me, don’t want to be bothered? I don’t know, but I had a lot of fun for 2 hours along with my neighbors next store who set up their “distribution center” in their driveway. It was mild enough outside after dark so I set up a couple of tables on my front walk, one with bowls holding treats on it and one with my laptop and a glass of wine. Sure beats constantly running to the door when the doorbell rings or I hear kids coming up the walkway. I remember how much I loved Halloween when I was their age, I will hand out treats every year for as long as I’m physically able to do it.

  14. My mother always used Jergens hand cream when I was a child and like you, the memory of the scent catapults me back decades in time. Familiar scenes begin to float through my mind as I recall her opening the jar (she used the cream) and applying it to her hands, rubbing it in and then taking each of my hands and applying the excess to them so I could feel grown up, too. Goodness, had never thought of this in all these many years.
    Thanks for sharing about these books. Will look forward to reading them soon.
    Hope you get to see some of the pretty trees in Tulsa as they coming into color these past few days.

  15. I think I am one of the few people whose favorite day is Monday. I can’t remember having a bad one. It’s always the beginning of a clean slate with endless possibilities. I seem to make good decisions on that day, too. I’ve always loved the smell of Jergens lotion, too. Always makes me think of my grandmother and my mother.

    1. I kind of agree with you about Monday. I’ve never been crazy about weekends. When I was a child I was dragged to every church service on weekends and I hated it.

  16. Happy🎃Halloween everyone. No matter how you celebrate or not I hope you find joy in the day. Of course It is a big day for the kids. Mondays start my week also. Boy Jergens cherry almond! I can smell it like it was yesterday! But I was not a fan of that scent. My Aunt told me she uses vasoline to skin tags and all kinds of precancerous little spots. She said her and her friends have had good results. It is worth a try. They just put a little dab on the spot as often as possible to keep it covered. Maybe the spot doesn’t get oxygen and that takes care of it. You’d think we would be told some of these things. Yeah, right!

Comments are closed.