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What Material Belongings Do You Cherish?

This morning a comment came across my phone that spoke of things you may have lost during your life that you wish you still had. It got me thinking not only about keepsakes that were lost through the years, but also about the things I have that I cherish.

When my mother-in-law’s home was ravaged by flood waters, her loss was palpable. Everything was such a mess. It was so hard to watch her struggle and try to account in dollars what she had lost for the insurance. How does one even remember all you have collected and held onto for a lifetime. I do recall she was most worried about a small child’s tea set that had belonged to her mother. Thankfully it survived, but so little did. She felt as if her life had been washed away.

When I think back on my own life, there are some big things I could grieve over. Like my grandmother’s house. But more than that, it is the odd little things that were somehow lost or destroyed over the years that I wish I still had. Like the rolling pin my grandfather made me.

My sister was relocated by the Air Force several times during her career. When the military moves you, it is a well oiled machine that moves quickly!  When her furniture arrived at the new location, the lamb cake mold that belonged to our grandmother was gone. It was the cake pan that produced the cakes we all had for birthdays, a lamb covered in coconut with raisins for eyes. She was devastated.

Years ago, my sister bought our mother a Cameo ring. When mom passed away, the ring was given back to her. It was one of her prized possessions. When my sister passed away, the ring was never found. I have often wondered if she made a decision to give it to someone while she was alive to witness it.

Hubby and I have a few family heirlooms, but most things have no intrinsic value. They are all simple and unremarkable items, but all wrapped in memories. Those are the things we cherish.

I once asked my daughter what things she might want once we pass away. I laughed at her response. She wants the pan we always cooked our potatoes in when we got together for the holidays.

I think for me and my brood, it’s the memories that bring the value.

30 thoughts on “What Material Belongings Do You Cherish?”

  1. My family is much like yours, Maggie. I keep those things which hold special meaning. After downsizing 4 times to move to my RV for 4 years (and once again moving back to a tiny home) I learned to keep only what my heart desired and I truly needed. Unlike your Mother-in-Law (bless her heart) I have not lost things due to tragedies or Mother Nature. My Mom did something precious. She has little shelves of meaningful things that were passed down and she made little museum-like cards stating to whom each belonged. I saved strange things like my sons’ first hair cuts and the things they made at school. And every card and letter students made for me it seems. Mom says one day I’ll have her piano. I have a funny story–my youngest, when he was around 6, was staring at my Great-Grandpa’s fiddle hanging above my Mom’s piano. My Dad said, “Jay, one day when I’m dead you can have that.” He looked inquisitively at Dad and said, “Pop Pop, aren’t you close enough to dead I could go ahead and take that?” I wanted to crawl under a rock and the family burst out laughing.

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    1. Out of the mouthes of babes! They do say what is on their minds. I have hair from my father’s first haircut and his first baby gown. They were some of my grandmother’s mist favored possessions. I have often joked how I wonder if I could have my father cloned from his baby hair. Possession are but memories in 3D.

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  2. I have a photo of my mum aged 15, in its original 1930s frame.. I would hate to ever lose that. Also my camera collection, even though most are in a box in the loft. But to be honest, I could cope with losing almost everything else, as it is replaceable.
    If I was facing a severe flood, I would save my dog Ollie above any posession.
    Best wishes, Pete.

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    1. Our families and out pets are the most beloved in our lives for most people. There are many things I would hate to lose. This is why I have begun to give to my children the things I do not want to get lost through time. The things and their stories go hand-in-hand.

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  3. It is the same with us, more the memories than the values. The Christmas tree decorations made by the boys when they were small, silly gifts they bought us back from school and scout holidays. My mum’s bread board and large serving dishes and my wedding and engagement rings.💜

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    1. I still put my children’s handmade decorations on the tree and now they are joined by our grandchildren’s handmade decorations. Such memories!

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  4. My late father’s photo collection and little ornaments that Mother treasured because we kids brought them home to her from various outings. Also her pots and pans and saucepan stand.

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    1. My husband has a number of tools that belonged to his father. He dropped an old level that belonged to his dad and it broke. It upset him so bad and our grandson was there at the time. The following Christmas he gave him a level and told him he hoped it would make him feel better. He was only 6 or 7 at the time.

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  5. Such a lovely post, Maggie.

    Most all of the things that I’ve kept have memories associated with them, although I’m reminding myself that I need to sort and discard again after almost 6 years after consolidating things. Especially with files of articles and referemces that I never look at in today’s age of information at your fingertips. I’m beginning to wonder about some of the books that I kept, too.

    But the things that hold memories — well, I treasure them.

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    1. Good books are hard tompart with, Lisa. As are personal items that remind us so much of those we love. They are memories of layered lifetimes.

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  6. For me, it’s sentiment that makes material possessions valuable. My home is filled with heirlooms and I love it. There’s a Cherished Blogfest each year, couldn’t tell you when, wherein people blog about special items.
    I hope she did give away that cameo ring and see the joy of the recipient. Not only is that a far cry better than lost or stolen, but I really think sometimes there’s an exact person to receive these things.
    There were several times I lost things that had me wondering if the items were stolen.
    I lost things in military moves, too. Strange things — a saucepan, a hair brush, and all of my most precious ornaments from childhood (that one, I had a cry over.)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Joey, I hope my sis had the joy of giving that ring to the right person. My sister also had a glass piggy bank full of dimes. That disappeared in the same move. She cried over that cake mold, I tell you that. It was probably her most cherished possession.
      Ohhhh, that blogfest sounds right up my alley. I am going to go poke around some and see if I can find it. Thanks,

      Liked by 1 person

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