Welcome to Small Reflections

"Nothing is ever achieved without enthusiasm."
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Duck photo source: Lisa's Chaos
I hope you enjoy your visit. If you're looking for something specific, check out the links to posts by category in my sidebar and down a ways. They'll assist with tracking down different types of posts found on each of my three blogs. You might also enjoy checking out the other sites: Sacred Ruminations, Blog Rolls, Bling & Blurbs, and Happily Retired Gal.

I hope you'll look around & leave comments
then visit me at my new blog ...

Giraffe Journal

and/or website ... Labyrinth Journal
both self-hosted at WordPress
where I publish as myself
rather than under a

I've not had much time for posting or blog visits, but if you're interested I hope you'll find time to check out my new blog, Giraffe Journal or my Labyrinth Journal website ... both self hosted at WordPress.

Thanks for your visit and have a delightful day ;--)
Hugs and blessings,

Monday, May 19, 2008

Fun Monday #7 - My Collections

Mariposa is today's hostess and she writes: "FUN Monday is for us to have some FUN on a Monday...so I'm going to get into your minds and do just that...have some FUN! "

She wants us to write about our
but most of all
she wants this to be a FUN Monday!!!!!

1. I mentioned & shared photos of my 'mug collection' last week after my 6th Fun Monday 'jerk' poem, and I seem to recall previously sharing some photos of 'holiday mug favorites' on my other blog last December, but I don't seem to be able to find it at the moment so am unable to provide a link. Here are just a few more from one cupboard ...

Many of these mugs came to me a 'gifts' from family members, friends, and former students over the years... and I tend to hold on to 'stuph' indefinitely rather than get rid of things. As a result, I have an overabundance of mugs ... (some on display and others in cupboards like the one pictured above). Although I no longer do much entertaining at all, I don't seem to be able to let any of these mugs go.

2. Books surround me. I have multiple bookcases in every room of my house ... literally. Here is a split photo showing the upper & lower shelves of just one. All are filled with books I've read and annotated. In addition, just about any horizontal surface in my house collects stacks of unread books. Some have told me my house resembles a library with lots of comfortable seating.

3. Along with the books written by others, I've got about 30 years worth of journals I've filled with daily writing of my own ... collecting Memories. All I need do is pick one up and read to return to moments from my past.

4. Giraffes of all sizes and shapes inhabit my living space with me ... metal, wooden, glass, ceramic, fabric, and a variety of other media ... together with framed paintings, drawings and plaques with giraffes on them. Then there are giraffe throw pillows, t-shirts, sweatshirts ... and more mugs with giraffes. There's even a photograph of a giraffe sculpture (in my sidebar) that I happened upon in Taos last summer ... and the one below I found at another blog a while back.

Animated Giraffe
5. In addition, I have miscellaneous collections of ... silver jewelry (bracelets, necklaces, rings, and earrings) some with stones and some without ... comfortable shoes along with a variety of purses in different sizes & colors ... scarves & accessories for 'accents' to change the look of my clothing ... and photographs (LOTS of photographs). I've got my Mom's collection of LP records and sheet music ... and the cedar chest my Dad gave her their first Christmas together filled with her belongings.

Throughout my life I've been a 'collector' of all sorts of stuff and the truth is that things seem to accumulate themselves around me in my house and in my car ... so my environment is consistently 'cluttered' ... even though I've been making a concerted effort to simplify my surroundings in recent months. I've stopped shopping for anything other than consumables ... groceries, gasoline, pet food & treats, etc. ... so hopefully I'll eventually succeed in getting rid of all that I no longer need or want by sticking with the process of letting a few things go each and every day and not bringing any new items in ;--)

Thought for Today
"The sculptor produces the beautiful statue by chipping away such parts of the marble block as are not needed -- it is a process of elimination." Elbert Hubbard


Celeste said...

Books always provide comfort.

Giraffes are somewhat whimsical -- I think that they would provide a little slice of comedy here and there.

Jenny, the Bloggess said...

Books and photographs. Amen.

Joy Des Jardins said...

Collections....I can see we're alike in yet another way sweetie. I too have mug collection. I was enjoying yours very much. I have a whole lot of rings and earrings too. I have a glass and crystal collection. And I collect Beanie Babies. Certain kinds of books. And of course the worst is all my Xmas stuff....the snowmen and angels and stuff. Well I've stopped collecting...just like you have basically. It just seems senseless at this point.

Storytellin' Mama said...

Thanks for visiting me the other day. i like what you said about "kindred spirits". When I was a little girl, I loved Anne of Green Gables and she always talked about "the race of joseph" and kindred spirits! I love books too! Nice collections!

Jan said...

We have a lot in common. Books, mugs, giraffes, jewelry,b ut I've never journaled, always afraid they'd be read by some one else!

storyteller said...

Celeste – I agree with both of your observations today. I discovered books as a very young child and have taken ‘refuge’ in them throughout my life. As for giraffes … so many ‘images’ come to mind, but lately I’ve wondered if folks have been telling me (subtly) to ‘stick my neck out’ most of my life.

Jenny – Yup … both books and photographs are satisfying, but methinks I value my mechanical pencil and journals even more because they help me ‘remember’ and ‘perceive the patterns’ of my life … making way for change and growth.

Joy – I think of myself as a ‘recovering packrat’ … finally achieving a simpler ‘lifestyle’ as a happily retired gal, I’m ready to release ‘stuph’ cluttering my surroundings … though it’s a continual challenge because of the ‘attachment’ I feel to ‘things’ as touchstones.

Laura – You’re welcome. It was my pleasure to meet you and your ‘storytellin’ family. I appreciate your return visit and observations here.

Jan – Yez … I know what you mean about how discovery (and betrayal) is always a possibility. I wrote as a child, stopped writing as a pre-teen because of my mom who read my diaries, but eventually began writing again in my mid-20s … surprising myself with what appeared on the page. I’ve written rather obsessively ever since. I’ve tried to get my sister and a couple of friends to promise me they’d destroy the journals w/o reading them should something happen to me … so far without success. Neither seems willing to assume that responsibility. The older I get, the more I think I’ll need to decide what to do with them … but for now they’re ‘stored’ and occasionally read just by me.

I’ve been responding to yesterday’s comments this morning (since I enjoyed my Sunday away from the computer) … and hope to do some visiting in the Blogosphere soon, but first Molly needs some play time and exercise … so it’ll be a while yet. Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts. I’ll drop by your blogs later to see what you ‘collect’ and/or what’s on your minds today. Hope you had a wonderful weekend and are having a marvelous Monday!
Hugs and blessings,

Sayre said...

I love your giraffes! It's not something I think many people think of collecting.

Jo Beaufoix said...

Yay for the books, and giraffes are adorable, there is something so quirky and cute and kind of vulnerable about them. Brill collections.

Akelamalu said...

Well I'd definitely say you're a collector after reading that! :)

Pamela said...

Does collecting dust count?

I've had a few collections - and my & my husband's mug collection isn't as large as yours, but has variety!

Anonymous said...

I've got books all around me too. How fun to collect giraffes. Just today I cleaned out and re-arranged my kitchen cupboards and I've got a couple big bags of stuff to donate away. Now I have room for more collections :0)

ChrisB said...

You are right we did share our coffee mugs in one FM post. Books are proving to be the most collected items today!

Momisodes said...

Like a library with lots of comfortable seating? That sounds lovely, especially with all of those mugs to fill with coffee ;)

That is amazing you've journaled for 30 years! I aspire to do the same :)

Anonymous said...

I know a family that has a ten foot giraffe in their entry way...it just makes me laugh every time I see it!

I'm impressed with all your journaling, I can barely keep going for a week. I guess that's why I blog.

karisma said...

Wow you sure have a few collections there! Now personally I have no problems passing on mugs, I do it all the time much to the families dismay! Books on the other hand, I am quite the hoarder of those, you can never have too many books!

I love your journal idea! That would really be something to pass down in the family!

storyteller said...

Sayre – I’ve always loved the gawky gracefulness of giraffes and be fascinated by them from the time I was little, so I suppose it was natural that people would give them to me … though I don’t recall asking for them.

Jo – Thanks for your enthusiastic support! About 15 years ago a friend started counting giraffes in my house and stopped when he got to 100 even though he’d only counted downstairs. The mugs are more useful however.

Akelamalu – I cannot tell a lie ;--)

Pamela – Oh my … dust bunnies! I didn’t think of those when I created my post but must admit I have MANY of those always … the predictable result of living with an almost white Lab who sheds constantly. LOL

EllenB – Well … once I finally get rid of ‘stuph’ I’m hoping I won’t need to bring anything more in. I desire simplicity and hope one day to be a ‘minimalist’ … truly.

ChrisB – I’ve not visited as many blogs as I hope to before the day ends, but it’s been intriguing to see what everyone collects thus far … and books do seem a commonality.

Sandy – Yup … books, coffee (along with water, fresh lemonade, tea & hot chocolate), and comfortable places to read are definite priorities in my life! As for the 3 decades of journal writing … I’m amazed myself sometimes when I consider this. I’m sure I’ve already written several books. The challenge is to 'mine' them for 'gems' and get rid of all the ‘extra’ words surrounding those books within my journals ;--)

Susan – I’ve seen tall giraffes like that in stores but am relieved no one ever got one for me because I have no good place to put anything that big. I do have a stuffed giraffe that stands about 5 feet high … he stays upstairs … away from Molly’s teeth.

Karisma – I’m gradually letting go of the mugs I don’t use very often, but it’s a slow process for me. You’re absolutely right … one can never have too many books ;--)

Thanks to all of you for visiting and accepting me for the ‘collector’ I am. Hope you’ve had a marvelous Monday!
Hugs and blessings,

PJ said...

What lovely "Stuph". I have tons of books too!! And shoes, and purses and jewelry...and pictures!!! Maybe I"ll join the meme later!

IamwhoIam said...

Books are a must, I ponder on how some can keep a journal something that tends to be beyond my ability. Mugs and mugs and our long neck friends.
Thanks for sharing.

Lifeless in Ohio said...

Wow - you have quite a collection of collections!

Anonymous said...

Oh thank goodness...seeing your mug collection makes me feel way less bad about my own!!! I'm so happy someone else collects mugs as well!

And the books...love the books.

Ari_1965 said...

I'm resolved to neuter and spay my mug collection soon. It's either that or continue to allow them to breed until they take over my kitchen, spread to the livingroom and then take over the whole house.

Alison said...

wow..those are alot of mugs!!! I love books also, and giraffes are kind of cute!!

Joyce said...

I'm all with you on collecting and enjoying books. There are just so many good books, and favorites to reread, too. :) I see you resort to storing books sideways, too.

I think "stuph" that brings back good memories is good stuff to collect. :)

Betty said...

Hi Virginia,

I'm afraid I have fallen down on my blog visiting. I just can't seem to get back in the swing of things from being gone from home that week, but I'll get there.

You have a lot of pretty mugs and books galore. I enjoyed reading about your collections and seeing the pictures.

j said...

Mugs to giraffes, skads of books! Cool collections! I think I found the giraffes of all sizes to be the most interesting collection. Very different.

Be blessed.


storyteller said...

PJ – Seems like lots of us collect books! I hope you do (or did) decide to participate because I’d love to read of your collections too.

IamwhoIam – People like me write because we have to! Keeping a journal was (and is) a ‘survival strategy’ for me! I was raised in ‘a state of denial’ and told so long ‘not to be silly’ or that ‘I didn’t think those things at all’ that I truly lost touch with me … until I picked up a mechanical pencil in the early 1970s and let my hand remember (and reveal) myself to me on the page … at first in very rigid rhyme and rhythm … later in more fluid prose. I still write to discover what I know and think … never quite knowing what’s going to appear until it does.

Cricket – I certainly do ... and I hope to remedy that by simplifying day by day!

Annie – How fun to know we share this 'mugged' foolishness.

Ari 1965 – Ah … I should have realized they were ‘multiplying’ in the dark behind closed doors. Excellent suggestion to remedy that! LOL

Alison – Yez … definitely more mugs than I need! Most of my giraffes are ‘realistic’ in appearance, but some are more whimsical.

Joyce – Yup, I squeeze the books onto the shelves however they fit! Mementos or touchstones do help me access memories.

Betty – Not to worry! Many of us are finding it difficult to keep up with blog visits and we’ve not been traveling. Just relax and do what you can … let the rest go. It’s all about balance ;--)

Jennifer – I’ve not visited everyone yet, but I don’t recall finding anyone else who collected giraffes. I have a friend who collects elephants and another who collects turtles. I suppose variety is a good thing.

I appreciate all of you visiting and sharing your responses while I was ‘at class’ and running errands today. I should be able to see what you’ve done tomorrow because I intend to stay home all day ;--)
Hugs and blessings,

Mariposa said...

I was attempting to collect mugs until I broke a nice one...I stopped! LOL

Books...wow! I love them!

Thanks for playing...sorry for the late visit...I've not been well.

storyteller said...

Mariposa – I’d hate to tell you how many of mine have broken over the years … some were real favorites and irreplaceable, but perhaps Ari is right and they’re ‘breeding’ behind cupboard doors.
I’m sorry to learn you’ve not been well and hope you recover quickly! Thanks for visiting when you could ;--)
Hugs and blessings,

Karen said...

I went through a huge purge a couple of years ago (30+ enormous plastic bags for charity pickup, about ten paper grocery sacks of papers for recycling, and another 10 or so plastic bags of junk that I couldn't do anything with but take to the dump) and I don't EVER want to have to do that again--to that end, I've stopped collecting and started letting go. I cannot begin to tell you what that did to my energy--it renewed me! And it continues to renew me--to see half empty drawers, empty spaces in closets, etc. It's as though the emptiness gave me room to grow...

But I understand where you're at and how you feel! And I've still not reached perfection--you've read the entry I did on my books!

Nice entry--I loved getting a glimpse into your home! ;)

storyteller said...

Karen – I do remember your posting about your books (thought of it as I created this one actually) and I appreciate you sharing your experience here. My sister and a good friend have assured me for some time now that I’ll feel better when I’ve finally accomplished this ‘simplification’ task … and finally I believe them. Somehow knowing this doesn’t help me deal any easier with the resistance. I do know that if I don’t quit, I can’t fail … so I’m sticking with the task for however long it takes! Once I finish, perhaps I’ll publish photos of the inside of my home the way I do with my yard … maybe.
Hugs and blessings,

NicciN said...

Thanks for sharing. Very interesting.

I have gotten rid of most of my journals. It was an interesting decision, but somehow decided I wanted to look forward and not back, so was able to let them go. I think there was also a bit of privacy in that as well -- didn't want them all around if something were to happen to me.

storyteller said...

Yertle – Yes … I worry about the ‘privacy’ issues myself and I’m hoping to be able to release my journals at some point. I admire you for being able to do so and am curious about your process.
Hugs and blessings,

Kaytabug said...

Wow! I collect coffee mugs and love being surrounded by books! I too collect all sorts of things and have a cluttered home, it's just who I am. Glad to find my fellow kin! ;)

storyteller said...

Kaytabug – It is reassuring to know I’m not the only ‘clutterbug’ out there. Thanks for dropping by and I hope you’re having a marvelous Memorial Day weekend!
Hugs and blessings,

Tina Coruth said...


Books and lighthouses (figurines, photos etc) for me. I love your giraffe! :-)


storyteller said...

Tina – Thanks! Seems like lots of us collect books ;--)
Hugs and blessings,

Related Posts with Thumbnails