It occurred to me the other day that I have a problem. Truth be told, it wasn’t just the other day. It’s pretty much every day. I have often written stories here about embarrassing moments. I’ve written about the indiscretions of my youth. Now it is time to expose my dark side. It’s time to tell you about one of my biggest flaws. It’s something I struggle with each and every day. Ok, here it goes…
I’m a collector. I pick what my long-suffering husband calls an “obsession” and then I buy everything associated with it. Not only do I collect the collectibles, but also every book related to the collection. eBay loves me! My love affair with Amazon is unparalleled.
Wow, I can’t believe how good it feels to get that out in the open. Ok, laugh if you wish, but this is serious stuff! Actually, it is about stuff. Lots of stuff. I’m not a TV-worthy hoarder. There is some semblance of control and organization, but my house is a shrine to all of my collections. This is not a good thing. It’s also not a good thing that this house has 13 rooms. Now don’t go thinking it’s some hulk of a mansion. It’s just an old farmhouse with teeny, tiny rooms.
To put things into perspective, we live on the ground floor. The entire second-floor houses my stuff. Plus, the barn and the garden shed are stuff to the gills. There are only two of us, so some of the storage rooms have specific themes. I’d go through them one by one for you to give you an inkling of just how beyond help I truly am, but it would be a long post. Instead, I will just highlight a very few of my very disparate obsessions from the past.
Books: Book collecting has been part of my life ever since I could read. Probably before that. I have thousands of them. They are the artifacts of my various obsessions. I think we should move on.
Tropical fish: I once had 13 aquariums because I wanted to collect many different types of fish. I now have one aquarium. I’m not hopeless in this department anymore. See? I’m making progress! Don’t be too proud of me. I’m still hopeless in many others.
Cooking supplies: I bought the best pots and pans. I have every gadget a cook could want. I bought cookbooks and dishes and bakeware and tools. I have every appliance available. This is all well and good, but…I don’t cook. My oven sees action about twice a year. I’ve been known to store cereal boxes in there. Right this very minute it has some cookies and a peanut butter cup sitting on the pizza stone that hasn’t seen pizza in a very long time. I thought all of these things would entice me to cook, but so far it hasn’t worked. Maybe when I retire. Oh wait, I am retired. Sigh…
Beanie Babies, Boyd’s bears. There are many bins upstairs devoted to these creatures. If Beanie Babies become a hot collectible again I’ll be rolling in the dough. Of course, dough reminds me of all of those cooking supplies and that’s just not a productive train of thought so we shall move on.
T-shirts: You might think that I collect the really cool shirts with the graphic designs. That might make some semblance of sense, but no. I collect regular t-shirts in every color imaginable. I think I have three shades of melon. Don’t even ask me about purple. Seriously, don’t ask. Do you know how many shades of purple there are in this world? If you don’t, just come see one of my t-shirt shelves. Yes, I said shelves. With an S. I have many.
Yarn: This was an obsession I had for a long time and I’m not sure I’m done with it yet. I have a yarn room. Yes, you read that right. I have an entire room with bins of yarn stacked to the ceiling. There was a time when I did a lot of knitting. Since epilepsy struck I haven’t picked up my needles. That was one part of my brain that stopped working. I didn’t know if I could ever knit again. I miss it. I think it’s time to break open the bins and organize the yarn so I can actually plan what to do with it. It won’t hurt to try. The thing is, I bought yarn as a collection rather than having any plan on what to use it for. I have a lot of single skeins. My friend Tony over at THE YARN BLABBER is giving me tremendous inspiration. He’s also rolling his eyes right now, I can just feel it. You should see what he knits. I’m not just saying that. I mean you should go to his site and truly see it!
Rubber stamps: I was bored while waiting for a flight to Chicago and I picked up an interesting art magazine to read on the plane. It showed lots of fun creations using rubber stamps. By the end of the flight, I was in collector mode. I bought them mounted on wood. I bought them unmounted. I went to conventions. I did demonstrations at conventions. I have over 10, 000 rubber stamps if you count both types. Yes, I am ill.
I made wonderful friends who owned a stamp shop. They enabled me…a lot! BUT, in my own defense, I used them…not the friends, the stamps! I had fun with them…both the friends and the stamps! The featured image shows a couple of my attempts at rubber stamp goodness. I did try to organize them last summer. I got tired. I stopped. But before I stopped organizing, I bought some sets online. I mean if I was getting organized a few more would hurt, right? The rubber stamp/art supply room is still disheveled. Maybe I’ll tackle it again soon…probably not.
Worry Eaters: Here’s an obsession that is totally the fault of Rhapsody Bohème She told me about these cool stuffed beings called Worry Eaters. It’s all her fault. You can unzip the creatures’ mouths and insert a piece of paper with your worries on it. It’s a way for kids to get worries off their minds and also a way for parents to help because they’ll know what is worrying their kids. See how cute these worry-chomping monsters are?
Rhapsody Bohème mentioned them to me and a collection was born. We’ve even talked about doing a post together with the Worry Eaters as characters. It’s all her fault!!! I’m easily enticed. I always go overboard. I’m not sure there’s any hope for me. However, if I get too worried about it I can use those Worry Eaters as they were meant to be used. I’ll write “Rhapsody Bohème might lead me astray again!” and stuff it in a Worry Eater mouth. But which mouth? I have so many…
There really should be a program for people like me. But there would be meetings. I hate meetings. I don’t have time for meetings. I’m too busy buying stuff and finding places to put it.