Friday, September 21, 2007


Revgalblogpals ask this week:
1. Are you a hoarder or a minimalist?
I have a 3,000 square foot house that i share with 3 cats and a dog (actually only 2 cats, since Buster lives outside). The house is full. That answers the question. My hoarding is selective, though; yarn, fabric and books are my vices of choice.

2. Name one important object (could be an heirloom) that you will never part with.
First choice would be my teddy bear. He was the first toy my dad bought me when I went to live with him, and he's been all around the world with me. He's pretty much hairless at this point, and has been retired to his own personal rocking chair on top of a bookcase (out of reach of the dog, who loves stuffies). But the fact that he's survived this long, including through a flood and a fire, means I hope he'll last as long as I do. If the nursing home has to put him in a biohazard bag for him to be in my room, then do it.

3. What is the oldest item in your closet? Does it still fit???
I don't keep clothes much. If I can't use them I pass them on to someone else who can. So the oldest things in my closet are costume items left from when I sang with Sweet Adelines. I have a mandarin-style red satin jacket that I made from an evening coat; I never wear it, but looking at it makes me happy, so I keep it. And I have a pair of fuschia snakeskin high heels that I will also never wear again, but they have happy memories of days when I could wear high heels. Other than that and an old tatty bathrobe (we all have one of those, don't we), the rest is relatively new.

4.Yard sales- love 'em or hate 'em ?
Despise yard sales. Refuse to ever have another one. And only go to them when I'm with someone else and then under mild protest. I don't need kid's stuff or more old paperbacks. On the other hand, I have a friend who loves yard sales and finds amazing things in them, some of which she has given to me, and I love every bit of it. She has a gift for sorting through to find treasure; I didn't get that gene.

5. Name a recycling habit you really want to get into.
I wish we had recycling here in my community. But the fact is, I don't have that much trash that could be recycled. I don't buy pop or beer, so no cans. I have pickle jars from time to time, but they would fill maybe one bin a year. I don't subscribe to newspapers except the local weekly. Plastic bags get used for kitty litter.
When I do get into a sorting and sifting mode, I box up everything that I think someone could possibly use and carry it to Goodwill or some other mission organization with a thrift store. The stuff goes to good use, and doesn't end up as trash. Books that I don't want to keep go to the local library for their collection or their fundraising sale.

There's something about hitting the 50th birthday. I became acutely aware in new ways that my lifespan was finite and that the time would come when I would have no need for most of the stuff I spent the first 50 years of my life accumulating. Putting my dad in a nursing home and seeing his needs whittle down to a few sets of clothes and a telephone made me first aware of that. And while I could take care of disposing of the rest for him, I will have no one to do that for me. So I want to be sure that I don't leave a mess behind me, assuming that I have the capacity to make my own decisions for a while to come. So I've stopped buying the kinds of bright shiny things that attracted me when I was younger. Yarn and fabric get made into things for others; books feed my soul. I buy clothes to feed my fabric addiction and to look acceptably "chic" in the world. I replace needed things that wear out or get broken. The rest is up for grabs. I look forward to passing it all on to someone else who will love and enjoy it as much as I have. Except for Teddy; he's gonna have to go to the crematorium with me.

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