Thursday, July 31, 2008

Thoughts on Decluttering - Part Two

Holds All My Memories and a Coffee Mug (for size comparison)!

Yesterday, we took the first swipe at decluttering.  Now it's time to roll up our sleeves and dig a little deeper.

What about the sentimental stuff?  The family heirlooms, say?

I'm lucky to come from a long line of immigrants (apparently a certain restless spirit runs in the family), so there aren't a lot of heirlooms to worry about.  But there are a few pieces from various Nana's and the like.  I don't really want them for myself, but I don't really want to give them away.

So I'm going to pack them carefully into one or two boxes.  And then as my nieces and nephews get married, I can give them something that belonged to one of their ancestors.  I actually started doing this a few years ago and I'm amazed by how pleased they are to receive these pieces.  One memento is a wonderful thing.  It's when it becomes a houseful that it's burdensome.

And then, of course, there are the bits and pieces that accumulate in the course of a life well lived.  The cards and letters from loved ones.  The kids' artwork.  The piles and piles of sentimental stuff.

Ugh!  It can go so quickly from a nice little something that makes you smile, to an overwhelming pile of crap.  How to manage?

I have a pair of old store displays that I use to hang any cards I receive.  When they're full, it's time to cull.  The ones that have served their purpose go into recycling.  The really special ones get to stay awhile longer.

DSC06746

As for all the rest of it, I have a large vintage suitcase.  It's full of mementoes.  But that's it.  If I have more mementoes I want to keep, something has to come out of the suitcase and be gotten rid of.  Our sentimentality is allowed a space no larger than that.

Tough?  Sometimes.

Worth it?  Always!

Tomorrow:  What if?

2 comments:

Website Creator said...

Hi!

I found you blog via design sponge, and I am loving your photos! In this photo I am particularly interested in the light you have on your ceiling fan. We have a fan without a light, and all the light kits at the local hardware store are so boring. Did your fan just come that way?

Also I love the kitchen chairs. Were they an incredibly lucky vintage find, or is there perhaps a store you got them from?

I love your style!

Rebecca

Barb McMahon said...

Hi Rebecca! Sorry to take so long replying!

The ceiling fan came with the house, so I don't know where you could find one like it, although I often find cool stuff at Habitat for Humanity ReStores.

And the kitchen chairs were left behind when some tenants skipped town without paying their rent. ALMOST worth it...