Unpacking my suitcase after returning from a visit last week with my mom, I almost overlooked one of the gifts I brought home. Mom gave me quite a few things she knew I’d like to have: embroidered tea towels that belonged to my grandmother, a handful of old photos, an antique sewing box. Among these treasures was one item that might not seem like much of a gift — a little blue inventory sticker. I had to smile when I saw that she had saved it. I remember when she told me she found it, more than 40 years after her last military move.
It was after I had a similar experience while cleaning the floor one day. I moved the kitchen trash bin to vacuum in the corner, and there it was: a little blue sticker. It was imprinted only with a number, “120,” but I recognized it immediately, because I’ve seen thousands like it in a variety of colors. An inventory sticker.