Tuesday, January 02, 2018

The Collector

I see two types of people in this world:  those that live a very clean and uncluttered  life.   They get rid of junk, stuff, old memories and sometimes old friends as the new year begins.   They value the  simplicity of a clean start with fresh chances for success.  They strive for a Zen mind.  (I  want to be that type of person but...)

Others are somewhat like me.  They try hard to remove the clutter, but find the memory of the time it was acquired makes them hang on to it.  They refuse to ignore that annoying old friend that contacts them once a year over the holidays to bemoan their life or to brag about it.  I still respond and make attempts at meet-ups that will never happen.  I am not a collector in any formal sense, except for turtle figurines that I used to collect on my travels (never labeled them as to country or state) and which I really no longer collect, after I started putting them in a box!!



There is also my extensive seashell collection that I started when I lived out in the middle of the Pacific Ocean in my younger years.   Most of others like these beauties are also in cardboard boxes!



I do save new buttons, just clipped from new garments and put them in a box or a bag never  to be used.  I guess I would have to admit that I have a rather extensive collection in drawers of glitter, beads, yarns, threads, connectors, paints, fabrics, batik tools, ribbons, bits of jewelry, colored papers, bits of craft from my Mother-in-Law...all in my crafting closet in the basement.  I do not use those things much these days, except if the grandchildren come by and want an activity.  They take up an entire closet in the basement!




I have a growing collection of books of poetry, yes, but who does not have shelves of those?  This is just one shelf below.


  
I can explain how I got here at the beginning of a new year.  I  was standing  looking out the kitchen window  and then decided to take the photo below.  The photo is what motivated this rant,  post on collections for this day.



I am a collector  of bits and bobs of my life.  This is the window sill above my plants in the corner of the kitchen that comes about  after I empty my pockets at the end of the day.  (Left to Right:  seeds, more seeds, a stainless cup I accidentally brought home from a restaurant, a tiny turtle shell, a regular seashell, acorn seeds, a beautiful burl of wood I found, a grouping of oyster shells from a canoe ride, a cardinal feather, and a dried Celosia flower and in the middle background branches from some piece of  coral that had washed  up  on a beach.)

Collections of ephemera in Victorian times were placed in cabinets (Curios) that were  called "Wunderkind", "Cabinets of Wonder" or even whole Wonder Rooms.  Most were filled with collections by scientists.  FDR and Beatrix Potter had such collections, so I am in good company, if not as well organized.

21 comments:

  1. I have a whole room of crafty bits. I use them though. When I sold the house and moved into the condo I decided not to transport boxes of rocks, but I did bring a few that I found especially beautiful. I will have boxes to consider for the next move. I can't seem to stop picking up stones. I seem to have passed the habit on to my grandchildren as well.

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  2. I have a small frog collection I haven’t added to for years. Time to dispense with it I think. I dread having to move again but I would love a smaller place and getting rid of stuff would be essential!

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  3. That's a lovely window sill for "collections." There's tiny pine cones on my dining room table. Pressed flowers surprise me out of books I reread. Grizzly bears, little figurines and many of those cards that are miniature art; those bears I framed and have on a wall. Stopped acquiring bears many moons ago. And bowls of rocks, bowls from antique shops and rocks from everywhere. Like Olga my kids and grands seem to do it too.

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  4. I am in the process of putting away Christmas. I have just packed up my Santa collection, and will be cleaning the shelves before I put back my pottery collection. I will rehang my kitchen utensil advertising piece collection on the beam in my kitchen now that i have taken the garland down. Later I will sort through my fabric scraps to see if there is a sewing project I want to start during the winter.
    Yep, I'm a collector too. but I do try to not be cluttery. I am a hybrid of your two types of people. .

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  5. Only when it takes over your life and makes it hard for you to use rooms for their intended purpose, or makes your home so cluttered you are ashamed to invite people over, does this become a problem. Many of us collect this way.

    Grandpa is a Born Organized and gets rid of everything, or puts it exactly where it should be to be displayed but never more than a certain amount. It astounds me.

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  6. Georgia O'keeffe had collections of natural items she'd collected in her Abiquiu home. It's been said she even stole neat rocks or items that she would see someone else had collected :)

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  7. Like you, we have boxes and closets filled with treasures from our travels. Most of this stuff isn't worth keeping but hard to get rid of It's time to start eliminating things.

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  8. Wonderful post
    Someday I will plant the apple and lemon seeds. One year I saved squash seeds on the thought to give a few to family members, plant the others, and start a Thanksgiving Day tradition. This squash is from a seed from Grandma's 2016 Thanksgiving dinner, to me sounds neat including our gardening heritage to our family traditions.

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  9. You have amazing collections. I'm a collector too and worse still hubby is a hoarder. This makes it hard when you move.

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  10. My SiL,the author, has a turtle collection, but I suppose not like yours.

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  11. I have all sorts of collections...eggs which I no longer collect and only set out a few now, bird skulls, rocks, shells, things from the sea, things from nature. I have a chinese herb cabinet with every drawer filled with something different, my own little cabinet of curiosity and the windowsill above my sink is one long alter to nature with feathers and seed pods and bird nest and egg shells and cotton bolls and on and on. also a five section stacked bookcase full of other stuff. perhaps I'll do a post on my collections.

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  12. Oh, what a beautiful window sill. The colors inspire me. Delight me too. Slowly, I too get rid of things...books are going to be the hardest to get rid of. I'm trying to use the library more and keep less. Yesterday I stopped by a beach library, and I saw yard of empty shelves. People aren't reading the non fiction, the clerk told me. I was flat out appalled by the emptiness.

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  13. I am a haphazard collector. I see something I like and keep it for awhile and then put it somewhere out of sight. Years later I wonder where it came from! :-)

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  14. I like your collections and over the years have done the same thing. I smile, as I also have a turtle collection.

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  15. I think what we collect represents little pieces of our life that are a part of us. That's why it's so hard to throw these things away. Possibly we need to slim down what we keep, but although I abhor hoarding, I do think a little 'clutter' when it represents our personality is OK. And I like rocks too! (and books!)

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  16. Sigh, books, photos, buttons, acorns, feathers, rocks from a favorite beach on Lake Superior...
    As often as I box things up or give them away, more stuff is always arriving.
    Turning out all my pockets this week has been an interesting exercise.

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  17. I agree there are two types of people in this world: those who live the uncluttered life and those who live the cluttered life. So ... why it is that they are always married to each other?!?

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    1. Oh Tom, not here. Hubby collects ephemera from his parents and his life as a young students. Box of reprints...unattractive and obsolete

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  18. Lots of souvenirs from my days as a music fanatic...

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  19. I try not to bring anything into the house that has to be dusted or stored somewhere. So, that leaves very little to accumulate. I do bring in more books, but I have a friend to whom I give most of my fiction, and I have a school librarian that takes my children's books.

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  20. You make me feel better about my collections of so-called clutter. Mainly it is elephants, unsorted stamps and books - loads and loads of books. Happy Memories from Dalamory

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