My parents had a barn where I stored all kinds of stuff – Christmas decorations, clothes my son had outgrown, high school scrapbooks, dollhouse furniture, all kinds of crapola. When they moved in January, all that stuff went in a storage unit because I was living in a house with one (1) closet.
When I moved in June, one might think I would have retrieved all that stuff, if one was crazy, that is. I vowed that as soon as the weather got cool, I’d high tail it there and sort and discard.
I did this Sunday afternoon and learned two things:
A) I have one heckuva lot of Christmas decorations. I mean, seriously.
B) I have umpteen neatly labeled plastic storage bins of my son’s clothes from 0 months up to 4T. I know if I begin to go through them I will grow maudlin and sad and it will be terrible for everyone.
A couple of bags and boxes went directly to goodwill, posthaste.
I brought home a few more to go through, sort out, and organize. Last night, while trying to get to sleep, I realized that I had pitched one box that I didn’t even look through. Something really important or very sentimental or, or, something could have been in there. Garbage doesn’t pick up until tomorrow. Good thing because you just know I’m going to have to dig it back out tonight to see what was in it.
Then there is this box that I brought home:
Look a little closer. It’s a World Book Encyclopedia box. I remember those encyclopedias. The first time I looked through them, it was a Friday evening and Mom had baked some peanut butter pie cookies that are so good you will hurt yourself eating them. I remember eating those cookies, still warm, and looking at the “M” encyclopedia.
It was a heavy maroon book. The pages were edged in gold and so crisp and untouched they clung together with static electricity. I chose the “M” book because I wanted to look up Mississippi, of course. Well, duh. I remember seeing the state bird (mockingbird) and state flower (magnolia) and pictures of the state – all this familiar stuff and I felt like, Hey! That’s us! That’s me! I know that. I’ve been there.
But I digress. (Shocking!) That box is about 25 years old. No, seriously. That means in the mid 80s it moved with my family from Mississippi to Gila Bend, Arizona. And back. And a couple of other moves that my parents made. And then the what-feels-like-umpteen moves I made.
This was on purpose. Each time I’d start to pack away all the autumn/Halloween/Thanksgiving decorations in a more practical, sturdier, clear plastic container, I’d look at the cardboard box, consider my mother’s handwriting, the World Book logo and make a conscious decision to keep the box. The twenty-five year old box.
I’m sentimental about a cardboard box.
I could write a book about the things I’m sentimental about.
Case in point (and for the purposes of brevity, I’m limiting it to Autumn/Fall/Halloween items – otherwise this would be the Neverending Post):
When my brother was six, he was at recess on the swings when the bell rang. He went to jump from the swing and landed on his arm. Rather hard-like. His arm was, in fact, broken, which my mother learned from a sitter when she called home to say she would be late getting back from shopping in Greenville as there was a tornado and they had all the shoppers lined up in the hallway of the McRae’s department store and as they were getting off the phone, the sitter thought to tell her that OH YEAH, the school called and your son has broken his arm. My brother was in the hospital for ten days with a pin going directly through his elbow. (I know. You should see the pictures. –shudder-) The only thing he was concerned about was being able to go trick or treating in a few days (which he did, cast and all). That scarecrow went with a flower arrangement of some such that somebody sent him. Why do I have it instead of my brother? Because I am sentimental about something somebody else sent to him, who was in the hospital, not me, and because my brother is not a FREAK, as mayhaps I am.
That, folks, is a kitchen towel. It's one my mother had in the kitchen each October while I was growing up. Anything from childhood = sentimental.
By that same token
Anything my child makes is automatically a keeper.
sparkly spiderlike thing.
Also more recent
There is no crazy story with this. It's just something I saw, probably here, and ordered it a few years ago.
Then we have
If that looks to you like a terra cotta pot that somebody primed and painted to look like candy corn so they could line the pot with bright purple tissue paper and serve chips or whatnot in it at a party, you're right!
There was another one that I had hot glued real actual candy corn to, probably while watching an episode of Martha Stewart Living, clearly back in the day when I had more time than sense.
There are more things I could have photographed, BELIEVE YOU ME, like the paper turkey my son made last year but I'll save it for a post next month, lest I dazzle you with its awesomeness.