Sunday, February 5, 2012

Collectors and Their Collections

What strange creatures we people are!  All of my life I have heard the Biblical phrase about “collecting”.  You know it: lay not up for yourselves treasures on earth.  Few of us take heed when we read the phrase.  We earnestly try to lay up for ourselves treasures in heaven by following Christ’s direction for doing so, but we ignore the first part!  This became such a reality to me when we sold JMBBQ and had to start cleaning out stuff.  And most of it was just that – stuff!
            For 25 years, we had used the attic of the restaurant to “store stuff”.  We kept adding and adding and adding until it was full to capacity.  We weren’t exactly hoarders, we were just collectors.  It was hard for Don or me to turn down a bargain, or get rid of something memorable, and all of the children found it a convenient place to put things they weren’t using and didn’t want to get rid of.  So we “stored” it in the attic.  As a result, we had chairs, tables, lumber, art work, old jars - you name it.  We probably had it in that attic.
            When we decided to sell the restaurant, we knew that we had to get rid of all that “stuff”.  We also knew that it would be a monumental task. And believe me, it has been.  We kept asking, “what do we want to keep”?  Why keep any of it?  We haven’t used it or needed it in twenty-five years.  What makes us think we’ll need it in the next twenty-five?  Our children and grandchildren will just have to get rid of it!  And besides, we’ve no place to put it!
            So we called an auctioneer and contracted to have a Saturday auction.  Once we started clearing out our treasures, we discovered that some of them were just so sentimental that we couldn’t part with them. We couldn’t possibly get rid of G.I. Joe and his helicopter. And David had stacks of art up there.  And then there was my collection of old bottles.  And Don had all of the dairy records that the cows set from the beginning of our time at the farm; that was l956!  There goes that mind-set again!  Eventually, we became rather ruthless and separated the “sell” from the “no sell” – and a “maybe keep” pile. Well, you know what happened!  Our “maybe keep” just kept getting bigger and bigger.
So we decided that we could put it in an extra room at the house, and go through it again – just to be sure!  It cannot stay in that extra room for another 25 years!!  The only thing left to do is to set a time limit and do it!  Or we could just call Home With a Heart thrift store and tell them to bring a big truck (empty), and load it up!  Somebody else can take it home and store it!!