I’m an admitted collectiholic, but there is no 12 step program for one such as me. It may be from having depression era parents who were savers and never threw anything out that had a hint of future usefulness. It is a philosophy that suits me, and spills over into everything I do.
If I have two of something, it begins to look like a collection and I end up with 15 t-pots, or 5,000 magazines. (You think I’m kidding.)
The problem comes when you run out of room. I have a wall of shelves in by office. Every picture album, every vacation scrapbook, albums of the features I had published, souvenirs, nick-knacks. Then over the albums, I place wall hangings because there is no room left on the walls to hang anything. I have 15 pieces, paintings and artifacts of some type hanging on the wall of my office.
No matter how narrow a wall might be, it has something on it, like these beaded rings from my trip to Africa.
If there is a wall, it is filled from floor to ceiling. And, I love and enjoy my treasures. And for many years, with growing children, I resorted to easier to store items made of paper. Just yesterday, while assembling several different stamp collections to go to the thrift store, I found notes that made me laugh:
HANZOFF! Or I’ll sic my dirty P.E. clothes on you-they walk under their own power.
and: Mary kenny hitted me sally and kris wont play with me.
And, I’ve kept my mother’s name collection. She would sit with her cup of coffee in the morning and read the paper. Her rule was to only collect names of people whose last name was an adjective, verb or noun. Like Earl Silver, Rita House, Cathleen Clinker, Susanne Doubled. It had to be spelled correctly. Then she expanded it to humorous name juxtapositions like: Mrs. Rum divorced her husband and assumed her maiden name, of Selma Sober. Warren Nipple married Carla Breast. Jean Sucker married Roscoe Candybar. Dr. Michael Fox is an animal psychologist. I put it out for the thrift store, but took it back. Who would want something like that? She has a couple thousand names in her book. I finally decided nobody would want it and I loved her beautiful writing and took it back. See? Downsizing is tough for some of us.
My entire brick wall has pictures of birds on it.
My son Doug built me five floor to ceiling cases to hold my magazine collection. I had to take a pick-up load of magazines to the dump. I’ve had guests who remove and examine every magazine.
I have plenty offers of help. People who say, I’ll help you. If you haven’t used it in a year, its time to get rid of it. OMIGOD. I shudder and quake at the thought. But, I know it is freeing and that my kids have warned me, “we are just gonna toss this stuff.”
It is painful and conversely freeing to get rid of “stuff”. Jim estimates 5 years. I’m hoping for two.
It is something I have to do and can enjoy my stuff one last time before it gets tossed