I need help from you moms and daughters. How long are we required to keep things? As a mother of three children, I still have closets packed with their things. They are grown and have homes of their own, but I still have these things. They don't want them, but they don't want me to get rid of them. And I don't either. How could I give away my son's state Dizzy Dean championship jacket?
In my upstairs closet you will find a hook holding bridles, English and Western, with romel reins, my barrel-racing daughter's riding quirt, all hanging on the same hanger that holds the dress my youngest daughter wore in the older daughter's wedding. It has also been the dress for a talent contest at 4-H Congress—only at my house!
Since I'm an only child, I have inherited the photographs and documents from my mother's side of the family, my daddy's side of the family, and also from my great aunt, who lived with us. These are precious, and I just hope someone will want them and read them when I'm not here.
The photograph collection is huge. Do you remember the days of sitting in the living room and eating popcorn and looking at slides? Maybe we only did that at our house. If company came, out came the projector. Those slides cover everything from my early childhood to horse shows, from flowers to vacations in the Ozarks. The slides are beginning to fade. Soon they will be lost—all those great images. My mother was an amateur photographer, so that explains the volume of her collection.
In case I get sentimental, I also can tell you that in my junk drawer in the kitchen, (doesn't everyone have a junk drawer?) there are two teeth. One from a grandson, and I think the other is a recent extraction from my youngest daughter—a wisdom tooth. Why am I saving them? I don't know.
I haven't begun to describe the items that are left in my care. Trunks and buckets of snaps, screws, leather tools—all who belonged to my daddy, who was a leather craftsman. I think by today's standards he might have been a hoarder. I can't get rid of those things either. Might need to repair a saddle.
Speaking of saddles, I have those too. An English saddle sits on the railing in the upstairs hallway. I'm sure my daughter will need this again one day.
My husband is a hoarder-in-training, so we can't even mention things in my barn.
I am blessed to be entrusted with these precious things. Except for the teeth. I think they could go.