Sunday, August 8, 2010

The Aftermath, a Dream, or Maybe a Nightmare

Man and I have spent some time at his mother's home sorting and such.  Everyone can relate.

Millie is either a genie's dream saver or nightmare hoarder.  She saved everything, pay stubs, photos, anniversary and birthday cards, a list of the places she worked and what her job was.  I have seen somewhere the hospital bill when Man was born.   And, no kidding, today I found her doctor bills when she was preggies with him.  Lucky for us, many, not all, but, the majority of the photos are identified.  She saved all these treasures in boxes, of varying size.  There is not a lot of logic in her sorting and filing methods to me, but, hey, organization is a personal thing, and seeing that my office and filing is not up to snuff, I toss no stones, eh??

So, we brought it home yesterday, all the boxes. There are boxes in boxes, envelopes in the boxes in the boxes. This is part of it, piled in our parlor.  Several of the green tubs are filled with her crochet work, beautiful afghans.  There are some baby blankets and receiving sets that are so beautiful.  Once I photograph them, they will be stored, somewhere, not sure where - - - yet.

So, today, I told Man, we have to get the document, cards, photos, that sort of thing OUT of all these boxes.  For now, I am emptying boxes and using safe photo pages and those slippery pages that hold a standard sized sheet of paper.  Putting them in notebooks.  Then we can review easier and without doing any damage.  We can re-evaluate the process as the project moves forward.  Carol is winging it here, trying to figure out what works for us, in our situation.

Here is  peak inside just one of the boxes, this is the size of a change box, about 11 inches wide and 7.5 inches from front to back.

In this box I have found letters from her sister, Frieda, who was in the TB sanitarium, church bulletins announcing the deaths of a sister, her parents, baptism of a niece and nephew.  Also, the previously discussed doctor bills, wedding invitations to her wedding and that of her brother, and, MORE!!  Here is a photo of just a few items pulled from this box.

From one envelope (with a 3 cent stamp), I pulled her brother's marriage invitation, which by the way, still had the flimsy piece of tissue like paper one uses in such invitations, two newspaper articles about the wedding and one of the wedding reception napkins.

There are going to be a LOT of Sentimental Sundays, Mondays, Tuesdays, ....... well, you get the idea ...... around here for some time to come.

Copyright 2010, CABS for Reflections From the Fence


Greta Koehl said...

Though it may be a lot of work for you, I think that your mother-in-law's "when in doubt, keep it" philosophy will be of tremendous benefit to the family history. My experience after my mother's death 20+ years ago - husband and I had less than a week to clear out her apartment, dispose of her things, assemble "near-and-dear" items and select papers + pictures that we could take home in our luggage on the airplane. Thank God the man who did the final clear-out of her apartment was so thoughtful to make sure additional family items were give to my aunt and after my aunt's death my cousins made sure the items were sent to me.

Dorene from Ohio said...

I so envy you!! What a great challenge you have before you!

Joan said...

O my! Girl, you are going to have fun--- and kept busy for a while. Looking forward to those Sentimental Sundays, and such.

TennLady said...

Blog material!

Jo said...

A lot of work, Carol, but a treasure chest for the future :-)

Michelle Goodrum said...

I am right there with you Carol. It truly is a double edged sword. You are so fortunate to have all of that history to sort through and there will be many, many things you are happy to find and have. But then you also have all that stuff to sort through and ask why did she keep it all?

GrannyPam said...

Wow. I know that sometimes this will be heart wrenching, but what a wonderful gift she has left you. Take your time, and enjoy the journey.

Barbara Poole said...

This is right up your alley, and I think once you toss the junk, you will be left with a lot of treasurers. I am so envious. Plus, it gives you a lot of new material to blog about and that will keep you out of trouble!

Lisa Wallen Logsdon said...

Ooooh, and lot's of neat stuff to share with us for Treasure Chest Thursdays! I look forward to it!