Now that I have a place of my own, there are several things I intentionally keep around that are hugely significant to me.
I have several kitchen pieces from my great grandmother, including her cast iron skillet that made countless servings of friend chicken and cornbread while I was growing up. I also have a collection of historic newspapers from someone in the family (we honestly don’t know who), and a clock from my grandfather from his employer, Coca-cola. I even have a crochet blanked that my friend Mariah made for me when I moved into my house four years ago, and the china set that was given to my great-grandparents for their 50th wedding anniversary. I’m not even married and I have a china setting for at least 16 people.
When I was visiting my friend Virginia and her family last month, she showed me several beautiful pieces she had brought back to Colorado from her hometown in Arkansas. V and her husband, Andrew, furnished much of their new house with furniture and fixtures that once belonged to her grandparents. It was special getting to see the things that mattered to her because she knew them and knew the story behind them.
While I try to avoid it as much as I can, I often find myself sucked into the materialistic elements of our culture. But I want to have “things” that matter. Things that have a history and not just a function. Things with a value that far exceed their price. To most people, the material things I hold dear probably wouldn’t matter much. But to me, they’re priceless. They’re connections to memories and people that helped shape my life in one way or the other. They’re items that I would hate to lose, at least for now. And they’re always good for getting a story started when people ask about them.
What about you? What do you keep around you that’s significant? How do you incorporate these things into “normal” life, or do you keep them on the periphery, instead aiming to keep them for as long as possible? What’s been new to you that you’d like to one day pass along to someone?