Slices of Life... It's raining - pennies from heaven
For as long as I can remember, I've collected pennies. As a kid, I had one of those fold-out coin holders with circular spaces for pennies from each year. My sister and I spent hours looking for that elusive 1943 issue, made of nickel, due to the...
For as long as I can remember, I've collected pennies.
As a kid, I had one of those fold-out coin holders with circular spaces for pennies from each year. My sister and I spent hours looking for that elusive 1943 issue, made of nickel, due to the shortage of copper created by World War II. Penny collecting can be quite educational, actually.
But, over the years, it's become a lost art. Inflation has done away with the likes of penny candy, penny wishing wells and a penny for your thoughts, so the little brown coins really aren't capable of much more than helping us make correct change for a $17.01 purchase.
Add to this the popularity of the state quarters, and you'll understand why pennies have been tossed by the wayside. No one collects pennies anymore. In fact, most people don't even stop to pick one up from the sidewalk. It isn't worth their time or energy.
I'm looking to change that.
As a kid, I collected rare pennies for my coin holder; however, I also stopped to pick up everyday pennies from the street. Why? I was taught they were good luck. We called them "pennies from heaven," sent by angels to give good fortune, cheer us up or just let us know we were on the right track in life. I was a kid, so this made perfect sense to me.
I can see what you're thinking. You're shaking your head and mumbling, "naive" under your breath. I get that. I know it's pretty bizarre, illogical even, to admit that as a kid I believed in pennies from heaven
Thing is, I still do.
I haven't always felt this way. For years and years I didn't given pennies a second thought. They gathered at the bottom of my purse like old receipts and forgotten phone numbers.
Then, last winter, I started paying attention to the fact that I was finding pennies. Some of them were in the weirdest places, and I began to think like a kid again. I started to believe - in the power of something as simple as a penny.
Then I really started finding pennies.
I found them near my parked car, or on the floor at the grocery store. They cropped up on my morning walks. Not just once or twice, but every day. The friend that I walk with was skeptical at first. Maybe she still is. But she can attest to the fact that I find a penny on just about every one of our excursions. Once we took a trip to Ikea, a large super store, where you use a large plastic bag to hold your purchases. I pulled my big yellow bag from the gargantuan pile and guess what was inside? Yeah, a penny.
I shared the story of the pennies with my kids. They embraced the concept. It made perfect sense to them.
Soon, I was finding even more pennies. They were under my bed, on the front steps and smack dab in the middle of my sock drawer. Pennies everywhere. One day I was driving the kids to school, and my son mentioned that penny might be found under the car visor.
"It doesn't count if you put it there," I told him.
His face fell. "It doesn't?" he asked, crestfallen.
"Well, maybe it does," I said, wavering. "Your intentions are certainly very sweet. I guess it counts."
"Good!" he said, the smile back on his face. "We just like it when you're happy."
Since then I've continued to find pennies, in places where my kids have been, and in places where they haven't. Whether they are planted by my children, or come from somewhere heavenly, it doesn't matter. Someone, somewhere likes to see me happy, and that's good enough for me.
Jill Pertler is a syndicated columnist and freelance writer working with graphic designer Nikki Willgohs to provide writing and design and other marketing services to businesses and individuals. She appreciates your comments and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org .