November 9, 2011

9 Discards

Now that the quilt is almost done, the me-caused-cacophony in the corner of the living room can be tidied away. That isn’t just fabric and threads, there’s also the confusions caused by my inhabiting that corner for so long. The photo albums grew apace and spilled from their miserly shelves into the room. One shelf of sci-fi got pushed back against the wall. Cookbooks were unusable. Fashion took over Architecture, Architecture sat on Architecture, and Art slogged its way everywhere.

Yesterday I waited to finish tying the quilt until G gets home to help. Thinking I won’t hurt my hands or eyes as much as I would by tying, I begin sorting through the cookbooks. Do I use this? Are there duplicates? Do I remember it with great fondness?

That last is an excuse. No fair even thinking of how much I used to like something if I don’t use it.

I pulled out piles of cookbooks to take to the Discovery shop. Some are so tired they will go straight to Father Jo…or is it Sister Tricia now. I gathered two nice full bags of cookbooks to discard. “That’s not enough, not near enough,” I said to myself, and turning back to the book case, I packed another five bags.

Then I moved the photo albums…discovering that we have three empty ones just waiting for the next three trips. Ours and Mother’s now on two shelves. I pulled the sci-fi out so that corner would look neat again. The fashion volumes went with the quilting and sewing stuff. Oh, there’s another mess just waiting for my attention.

With a truck load of cookbooks, I descended on the thrift store only to discover the shelves in our workroom bookshelf had collapsed. There waits a mountain of books for my attention later today….I added mine, pulled out the holiday volumes. And started home.

On one shelf, just near the door were discards that caught my eye...plates. Lovely rich, burgundy and gold bordered, with a happy flowered center, these were plates that came in boxes of powdered soap during the depression. We ate on them every night when I was a kid.

Resolutely, I didn’t bring these charming plates home. Tho I talked out loud to them, even patting them before I walked away. I left them behind, doggedly.


  1. You are so disciplined! I keep finding books -- especially vintage sci-fi -- that I remember so fondly. I will donate those. I am resolutely discarding college texts; I know they are either no longer used or else updated.

    The contents of some of my precious references are available online. I know it, and yet I hate to give them up.

    And darn it, I think I remember some plates like that. Never a full matched set. (I guess my mother didn't like the soap.)

  2. Each time I see something like that I think about my only child who will be left with the task of sorting through all of my "stuff," I keep my hands in my pockets and walk away.

  3. Not leaving a lifetime of stuff for someone else to sort out is my motivator too, but I would have had a hard time leaving the dishes behind.

  4. I don't think I could have walked away from the depression age plates....but what a nice memory.

  5. All my soap detergent boxes went bu the wayside. They weren't as pretty as yours, and dammed heavy too.

    I have hauled bags and bags of books to Goodwill, but somehow, I keep finding more and more. Must be a leprechon at work somewhere. Or, maybe a bunch of them as one is at your house I see. Dianne

  6. Those plates sound so beautiful! I would have bought them.

  7. It's hard to leave some of those treasures behind, but healthy, I think.

  8. Is it just me or do you mostly purchase books with blue covers??

  9. This post was very nostalgic. I love that you talked to the plates. That is something I would do. I agree with KathyA. It was healthy that you left them behind.

    You are getting so organized. I envy that you did all that cleaning and organizing.

  10. You have such a way with touching memories.

  11. such a happy, colorful home!

  12. I'm so jealous! I LOVE your book shelves! You're so organized.


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