Thursday, February 6, 2014

Things We Keep "Just 'Cause..."

Do you have any ornaments, vases, dishes, cards and letters, dried flower arrangements and the like, that could be gotten rid of to cut down on clutter but you keep them for reasons that mean something only to yourself?

My husband has been doing so well lately in sorting and tossing out old papers and bric a brac around this house that I am inspired to once again look at my own collections of this and that.

I opened one of the cupboards in the kitchen pantry today and started looking at a small collection of flower vases I have accrued over the past few decades.  Surely there are some there I can get rid of in the interests of cutting down, cutting back, eliminating items I rarely or never use.  Well, I think probably most of my vases fall into those categories of "rarely" and "never".

However, it is nearly impossible to bring myself to decide to get rid of ANY of them.  Aaargh!  What to do?? 

There is the giant clear vase with the large round bottom and wide open top that is so grand for the occasional large arrangement of freshly cut flowers.  It does get used in the spring and summer relatively often.  Looking at it reminds me that since I am now feeling well I should have the energy to go to the florist's once again and restart my old habit of always having fresh cut flowers in the kitchen. What is cheerier than that, right?  In fact, I should start that habit again very soon as winter is the season most needing an assist in making us feel cheery.

Then there is the narrow clear glass vase that is so lovely for a single rose of any colour.  Hmmmm....perhaps it is the one most likely to be able to be given away.....or not. There is something so lovely about a single long stemmed rose in a taller vase.  It is more of a Swedish modern style, very plain in itself so as not to take away from the beautiful flowers I put in it.

Then there is the deep green vase, only 6 inches in height.  It screams the word "posies" every time I look at it.  It was given to me many years ago with a flower arrangement from a dear friend, my husband's "other mother" from his late teen years.  She loved it and I love it and it maintains that emotional connection between myself and a wonderful woman I rarely get to see any more, a woman who had a deep effect upon my spiritual life when I was younger.

Oh, and there is also one of the "wide eyed children" vases.  If you were alive in the early 1980's there was an artist who depicted cartoonish little figures with very wide eyes, patchwork clothing and their hair up in topknots. They were very popular on greeting cards, giftware and posters back then.  My son picked it out for me on my birthday when he was a very little boy.  It means so much to me because of that.  He was not a kid to allow his parents or grandparents to choose gifts and then say they were from him.  Always he had to pick the gift himself and he would drag his driver from store to store, mall to mall, until he found the gift he thought was most appropriate.

He also, as a younger teenager, presented me with flowers one day that he had arranged in a Garfield, the cartoon cat, vase.  Garfield is clinging onto a tree trunk that comprises the vase itself and there is a tree branch off to one side.  Garfield has his usual sardonic expression and I love it because it is cute, plus it represents one of the characters that assisted my son in developing his own sense of humour.  I have much to thank Garfield and Odie and Calvin and Hobbes for in the way my son's world view has turned out!!  hahaha  How could I possibly get rid of a Garfield vase??

There is a lovely medium sized pinwheel crystal vase that, while somewhat heavy and a mite overetched for a vase that size, does look quite lovely with thickly packed, lush arrangements of shorter stemmed garden flowers.  It belonged to my parents and is one of the remaining items we have from my grandmother.

The last vase I found is one of the last vases produced by the Blue Mountain Pottery factory before they went out of business back several decades ago.  It is from their more recent output of deep brown pottery and my mother-in-law gave it to me many years ago.

So, which of these beloved vases can I part with happily?  Well, none of them.  

I think next week when my husband is at clergy retreat for a few days I am going to take time to look at some other items in other closets in the pantry.  About a year ago I did this and got rid of some things, but perhaps if I want to justify keeping so many vases that are only used occasionally, I should work a tradeoff with some other things.

  I do have an awful lot of nearly antique cups and saucers.....that I love......


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