Enjoying Your CollectionsThis article was first run in Touchmark Retirement Village’s January Newsletter.

Recently I heard that young people of today don’t really collect things. They’re too busy trying all the new trade-up technologies and even renting and passing on clothes as fast as they fell in love with them. Belongings are much more transitory to the younger set.

But those of us who are from an earlier decade (or two or three!) often have collected memorabilia along our journeys. Snowmen, dolls, trains, dishes, quilts, lighthouses, ornaments, purses, magazines, cars, toys, teacups, and photos galore bog down our closets, attics, and minds. We are the Collectors.

But with every added item comes added responsibility. We must pay for it, know where it is, store it, dust it, and insure it. This can be exhausting and expensive!

And then comes the time when we simply can’t enjoy all we have anymore. Maybe we can’t get down to the basement to visit our collections. Maybe we just don’t entertain as much. Maybe we stopped decorating for the holidays a few years ago. Whatever the reason, our collections begin to be neglected.

Instead of regretting this moment, we must allow ourselves the freedom to re-home these special things. Good homes for these treasures can often be found online. Putting the word out to friends is a great way to match your prizes to those who would appreciate them and continue to celebrate them. For specialized items like collectible trains or dolls, you can often find museums and private collectors who would be ecstatic to thoughtfully care for (and perhaps even purchase) your items.

As organizing consultants, we are often helping our clients “give well” and part with belongings thoughtfully. Careful “re-homing” of collections brings relief and even pride to those who are simplifying, knowing they are sharing their passion with others.

After trimming the volume of your collections, prioritize your favorites so you can actually ENJOY your treasures. Hang those legacy quilts on the back of your couch or on the wall. Proudly display your grandmother’s teacups, and please: use the good china!

Life is to be savored and enjoyed; may your dear collections be a blessing to you and others!

 

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