Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Wisdom comes with age...polishing the bumps and enjoying the blooms.

I used to suffer with a manic condition of collecting things...
vintage collectibles mostly
arts and crafts...

copper was a favourite of mine.

I would attend every local antique fair and some farther afield
I'd get up early on weekend mornings newspaper in one hand, coffee mug in the other
to peruse garage sales with a greedy eye...

not an eye that I am particularly proud of...
greed stinks in all forms

I am distancing myself from greed and manic behaviours...
I am reforming and reinventing this body and mind
there's nothing like turning 56 to give one some well needed clarity.

I used to get very excited at the thrill of the hunt,
sometimes my pulse would even race.
I know I drove rather recklessly through suburban streets looking for sales
and often parked on the wrong side of the street and frequently blocked driveways
I  am the fan of all things safe
and obediently obey and observe rules and who only drives Volvos
those reputable Swedish Safety Stars.

I would be rushing...speeding
hurling myself forward towards the prize...
it might be a lowly trinket or a treasure to behold.

My wallet was halfway open as I approached the vendor...spilling change in my wake with not even a backwards glance...
I'd put on my buyers that would not reveal desperation or excitement
I'd pretend I didn't know the maker or the mark...
I would admit only to be smitten by the piece itself...
and play dumb.

I'd be calm incarnate...blase...impress me if you can!

Whatever was I thinking and why the act?
In hindsight I feel shame.

Curiously I have little to no desire of acquiring more "things"
maybe I have enough stuff now, and I am just over it.

I am moving more mindfully
and paying attention to what motivates me.

I know in my heart of hearts that stuff does not = happiness
I must have known this forever
but maybe tested the waters....

I am actually trying to pare down...
I am approaching this cautiously and methodically.

The journey to minimalism will take awhile...
not because I don't desire the transformation
simply because I need to reassess and address what I am ridding and why.

I feel that this transformation is necessary
as we advance in age we get closer to death
we rub shoulders with our mortality
and often we experience moments of crystal clarity
the kind that stops you in your tracks...

what I take away with me is what I came into the world with...
and that is humbling in and of itself....

Look at this collection of copper!

Hand hammered
made by a craftsman 
named Peter
lovely patina
(original and unpolished)
useful vessels
but why buy 6
shouldn't 1 be sufficient?

I like the interesting detailed work
it feels organic.
This is the first one I bought
before the mania set in!

The copper family of vessels
gathered here are
all a little different...
and similar 
yet having a
uniqueness of their own.

I've put pines cones, lemons, limes, nuts, trinkets
and all manner of things inside these
and now because I have so many and such a small bungalow
I need to stack them inside each other!

and the sad and sorry truth is 
they hibernate inside the buffet in the dining room 
and rarely see the light of day

I wonder how I will manage to dispose of these...
they are interesting yet somewhat peculiar 
would anyone would want to take them off my hands...
would they?

I'll keep one!

the first acquisition
the one that fueled my fancy
and sparked the mania
as a reminder
of things gone by...

If you collect arts and crafts copper 
you'll know that the original finish is what educated and prudent collectors demand

Polishing devalues the object substantially.

when it comes to my personal management
and routine
I employ polish with a fervour...
one day at a time.

Birthday gift 
Fresh Body Polish 
a hard working scrub
sloughing workhorse divine
with a delicious scent
just remember to rinse the tub out well after use 
or you'll be slipping and sliding 
and risking injury!

My newest favourite tool
Revlon's Crazy Shine
my nails have a shiny gleam all of their own

 buff and shine
quick as a wink...
instant gratification...for the impatient Hostess.

is a Phalaenopsis Orchid
 putting on an annual fuchsia flourish
these blooms will last for about 3 months before dropping off

I have put this up high away from Pepper or she'd be pulling them off.

I noticed that she'd pulled another tulip bloom from the birthday bouquet
it was lying on the carpet with a few teeth marks on the petals.

Life is never dull here in the Humble Bungalow
and there's always room for improvement
stay tuned for more deep thoughts
I am embracing change
in all forms...



  1. I love that your assessing and re-assessing... I'm feeling the same right now... maybe it is an age thing! Well written.

  2. Grateful for your reflection and your shift, which echoes my own, though I was never an avid collector. Feelings of shame or guilt are gifts because they show us how far we have moved from our attachments and manic getting. When my mother was in her 80s she said, "Once, I couldn't wait to get all these things, and now I can't wait to let them go." I often think of her words as I pare down.

  3. What you wrote, sounds familiar. Been there myself. Done a thorough job by decluttering, which surprisingly was very easy. But the mania is still here. I have to be alert. Hoping to be able to work on this in my therapy. Mania is a camouflaged feeling.

  4. Dear Hostess,
    "Style is the proper omittance of the irrelevant" Anselm Feuerbach (1829 - 1880), German painter.
    (Hope my translation is understandable)

  5. mimi- I think it might be an age thing...!

    Duchesse- Your mother sounds very interests me that with age comes wisdom...I would rather be a wise youngster and be prepared!

    metscan- We have much in I wonder what feeling it is that I have camoflagued.

    Britta- It works brilliantly Britta!

  6. Your copper is so beautiful! I understand your desire to leave the acquisition addiction behind but I also think our collections, our things, the stuff we choose to focus contributes to the story of our lives. My children are so interested in my little collections and interests - not for themselves - but because (I think) it helps them to understand me better, outside of being their mother. Isn't it such a harmless pleasure to pull out the copper and surprise someone with that hidden part of yourself?