Monday, October 20, 2008


I have been going through some boxes in our garage, determining what needs to be kept and what should be tossed. I am not very good at this. Evidently I am afflicted with a condition that causes me to feel if I saved something at one time it must be saved for ALL time!
Here's a question for you: What kinds of things do you HAVE to keep and what are you comfortable with throwing out?
My sister Nora and my husband Dennis are not afflicted in this way at all. They have the ability to open drawers and boxes and, in one swoop, dump it all in the trash bin. They don't pick up every piece of paper and envelope and peruse the contents on the outside chance that some treasure has been hidden there for generations, or at least months.
So, Saturday found me sitting on a chair in my garage, surrounded by boxes of things that I have saved since before we had children. (Our son will be 28 in February!) I could not believe some of the things I have saved for over thirty years. Actually, there were things dating back to high school for me and I graduated in 1974! I fancied myself a writer back then and had a notebook full of original writings. Lucky for the literary world the notebook was somewhat water damaged in our flood last April so I threw it away. Yes, I cannot believe it myself.
There were cards from people that I haven't seen or spoken to in more than thirty years. There were old school assignments. And old term paper. Newspaper clipping detailing some big story in the news for 1987-remember Baby Jessica who fell down a well? Why I thought I would need to be able to chronicle that story escapes me. Cancelled checks from 1983? Seriously, why did I still have that stuff?
But, to be sure, there were some fun things. A great newspaper clipping of my sis Nora in an ad for the fitness salon-Venus de Milo. This was from about 1978:

I found beautiful letters from my niece Nikki when she was a child. She is now in her early thirties. Those I am keeping because, for some reason, she really does think the world of me. I may need proof of that sometime down the road.
I found one of my senior pictures. It was actually the one Mom and Dad had hanging in the hallway of their home along with the four of my sisters. Do you want to see it? Okay. Remember, this was 1974:

Right now I have three boxes out there: 1) Keep 2) Throw away 3) Shred. I am happy to report that the throw away and shred boxes are bigger than the keep box.
Tell me about your keepsakes and answer the question above.
BTW: My dear little friend Whitney is having a contest-go to


Glamorous Life of a House Wife said...

That pic of your sis cracks me up! And that picture of you, you look the same!! I love it.

I am not one to keep things. I love throwing stuff out. So much that Darin gets mad a lot of the time. ;)

Melinda said...

Thank you! I am pretty biased but I think she is the cutest baby ever! I don't have any advice about the throwing stuff out because as I sit in our spare room/office/junk room I see that I need to have a major purge party. I think I am turning into my mother. She just got married and moved and so we are cleaning out her house she has lived in for 23 years and she had a lot of stuff!

dawn said...

we'll live somewhere in ft. smith. we're still working on the specifics. pray about that.
btw... i'm such a packrat which is really horrible for a person who moves all the time.

Liz said...

I probably throw things away too much. Many a time I've thrown my hands up and said, "I wish I hadnt thrown away _____________! It would have been perfect here!" Oh well. :)

Pleasant Drive said...

Yes I do teach in Tyler. And, if you don't mind my asking? Why do you ask?

Tanya said...

I love the pictures!

I hang on to VERY sentimental things, and chuck the rest as I can't stand clutter piling up!

Jersey Girl in DC said...

I'm such a pack rat... my Grandpop was... then my Mom is... and now I am. It's genetic! :) I just can't throw things away! It drives my husband crazy.