Tuesday, September 14, 2010


col-lect   verb \kə-ˈlekt\
1. a: to bring together into one body or place
    b: to gather or exact from a number of persons or sources<collect taxes>
    c : to gather an accumulation of (objects) especially as a hobby <collects stamps>

Have you ever wondered, I mean, seriously wondered, if you're a hoarder?
I've always considered , (well, I've chosen to call) my obsession "collecting".
I've collected for as long as I can remember.

Though I now don't have a certain item I collect, I used to collect hearts.
Besides the male human hearts I broke and added to my collection, most of the hearts were trinkets. I suppose some of those broken hearts could have been called trinkets, too... but that's another topic.
Paperweights, little glass heart shaped boxes, etc. They didn't take up much room and I enjoyed looking at them all arranged together in one place.

My first collection I can remember was, believe it or not, the little plastic thingy you clip on the twisted end of a bread bag. You know... usually something you throw away or into the bottom of the bread drawer or, I suppose, you could actually put it back on the bag.
I don't know why I collected them.
My mom had a large clear vase sitting on the window sill above the kitchen sink. That vase became the home for my collection.
I became obsessive about those little plastic squares. Every one I took off the bread bag or found laying on the countertop (because someone else didn't put it back on the bag) went into that vase.
I'm not sure how long this went on. I just remember that vase was about half full when I quit.
Probably the reason I quit was that I was at the age to begin my collection of broken hearts.
I wonder what my mom did with all of those little plastic thingys. 

Over the years, my "collection" has been: "Stuff I better keep because I might want to use it later or someone else might be able to use it and it's crazy to have to go out and buy another when I already have it in this box".
Picture frames, pens, pencils, paper, paper, paper, glue sticks, glitter, confetti, felt cut-outs, envelopes, Halloween costumes, misc game pieces someone didn't pick up when they were done playing the game, playing cards from that casino, dice, recipes, paint brushes, dishes, party decorations, fabric, yarn, nails, tools, candles, toys, games, scrapbook paper, stickers, wooden cut-outs, beads, bits and pieces of every craft I've ever tried, vhs movies, plastic disc cases, and on and on and on. You name it, I probably have it, though it might take me a couple of weeks to locate it out there in that "box".
I also have several boxes of: clothes my kids wore and I saved for them, things my kids made as small children and I saved for them, toys my kids played with and I saved for them, (they don't want any of that "crap"), things that belonged to my grandparents', little bitty pieces of paper my kids wrote "I love you, mommy" on, birthday cards, Christmas cards, "just because" cards, congratulation cards, graduation announcements, change of address cards, pictures of this little baby at 1, 2, 3, 4 months, pictures of: rainbows, deer, "that awesome cloud", flowers, hillsides, sunsets at the coast and the lake and the mountains, "take a picture of me making this face, mom", etc, etc, etc......napkins, ticket stubs, reciepts, etc, from places I've been with someone I love.... and on and on and on....

My family rolls their eyes at my "collections". I'm sorry, o.k?, I can't stand to throw something away someone might need or want.
Or is it I want them to want it.
want to have that "something" they need or want.
It is a good feeling when someone mentions something they're looking for or going shopping for and I can say "Hold on, I have one (or a dozen). Don't buy it".
I don't know why. It's a feeling of being needed, counted on. Sometimes people actually call me and ask if I have "one of those".
But, at times, it can be a double-edged sword.
Sometimes, that feeling is more of an obsession for me... gotta do, gotta give, gotta have what they need.

So, I'm giving myself a break.
I'm cleaning out and throwing away and putting "unwanteds" in a box for a sale (or for you to look through to see if you want or need any of it).
(sigh) So many boxes to clean out ..... so many items I might use one day.... or you might need.