This drum is one of many ornaments that were given to me by Mrs. Reed.
Mr. & Mrs. Reed were the next door neighbors to my Nixon grandparents. Every year Mrs. Reed gave me, my sister, and my cousin Gretchen a nice ornament for Christmas. In a time when many of our ornaments were handmade, Mrs. Reeds were always more elegant (glass birds, for instance).
We rarely saw Mrs. Reed. She wasn't very social. She had a small backyard, but it was an intricate, manicured garden. Turtles lived there that she took care of. Only three or four times do I ever remember entering their well-kept home. If we did see her, she would call out from her front porch, and we would call back from my grandparents' front porch.
She was a nice lady who chose to be generous to her neighbors' grandkids. And now I think of her every year when I decorate the Christmas tree.