My grandparents never threw anything away. By today’s standards, they might have been considered hoarders, although the overflow was confined to sheds, dressers, and cabinet drawers. They were a product of The Great Depression, believers in the notion that you never knew when something might be useful.
As a child, rummaging through my grandmother’s treasurers was one of my favorite past-times. No doubt this led to my love of old things. I’m not an antique collector, or a real collector of any kind; however, over the years I have acquired a great number of ‘treasures’ of my own, many of which live in an old second-hand china cabinet with only three legs.
Whether it is my daughter’s origami, mementos from my first cruise, or my mother’s china; my treasurers connect me to my past, both good times and bad.
One of my shelves is devoted almost entirely to shot glasses. These remind me of the places I have been and the fun times I had traveling.
I don’t know the story behind my father’s collection of Toby mugs but I have several of these in various sizes.
If I had to choose from among all the things I treasure, I would choose the letters my mother wrote to my grandmother while she and my father traveled from job-to-job. Some were written before I was born, some soon after when I was still with them, and the remaining few were written just before she was diagnosed with cancer. She died before my second birthday and these letters are the only way I know her.