Thursday, January 27, 2011

Confession: collections

When I was about 8-years-old, I wanted a dog, bad. My parents wouldn't let us get one, so I found ways to substitute - I read books about dogs, made homemade treats for my friends' dogs, and finally, I collected dog figurines - about five shelves full to be exact. I may have been on my way to becoming a candidate for this show.

When I was 11, I finally got a real dog.  And as most kids do with their collections, I grew bored of my dog statue menagerie and it soon moved from a prominent spot in my bedroom to a box in my parents' attic.

Since then, the only thing I've collected are vintage aprons, of which I have about 10, most of which were sent to me by friends and family who know I love these frilly things.

I'm confessing my collection because I want to know, what do you collect? Did you have any strange collections when you were a youngster? Traumatized by any porcelain doll collections of your grandmothers'?

I also wanted to share my thoughts on five things that are FREE and perfectly non-hoarderish to collect:

1. Restaurant matchbooks - free, fabulous little souvenirs to remind you of the great places you've eaten. Plus, when placed in a bowl they provide a classy air freshener for your bathroom. We keep ours in this seashell on our bathroom counter.

2. Seashells - bringing a little ocean into your house always brightens things up and seashells can also be used in so many cute ways! Like as a hurricane filler here, also in our bathroom.

3. Memories - I took a class in college called Life Histories/Narratives for which I had to write a biography about my mom. Though I'd already heard plenty of stories about her, it was really special to chat about her life uninterrupted. Take time to sit down with grandparents and other older family members and record their stories from small to big, down on paper or with a video camera. Years from now, the collection of those memories will be something generations of your family can enjoy.

How cute is my mom?

4. Compliments - I can't say enough about how a compliment can brighten someone's day. Be liberal in your giving of compliments and hang on to your favorites! You can write down compliments that really impact you in a journal or, like me, save a email folder for "Yays!" I have one in my work and one in my personal account. I stash nice emails there to remind myself how good things can be when I'm having a bad day.

Image from here.

5. Coupons - OK, I don't mean you should go to the extreme of this other show, but clipping those totally free coupons and collecting them someplace non-crazy like this cute antique coupon box that I use can save you big bucks. You know, so you can collect all those things that aren't totally free.


  1. Free matches are awesome. And mints. Because I always order stinky breath food. What? I like garlic.

  2. I love that card "You're looking particularly good today". Soooo cute. Love your blog.

  3. i love that you called the matches "classy air freshener"!!! seriously, awesome and hilarious.

    also, love that you wrapped twine around that soap dispenser and i'm here to tell you, i WILL be going all copycat on that one. thaaaanks. ;)


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