Lunch at my parents' house yesterday. Little A plus his six cousins, my sisters, our husbands and my mum and dad made for an entertaining Sunday afternoon.
While Little A was being his antisocial self, playing alone upstairs while his cousins were in the pool, I was attempting to sort through the dozens of boxes that filled what was once my bedroom and is now a massive storage area.
My mother is a pack rat. So is my mum-in-law, apparently. I wonder if this is something that is passed on genetically or acquired over time? Big A and I are anti-clutter and live in a flat that is severely lacking storage space, and since I periodically have urges to spring (summer, autumn and winter) clean, things are pretty much in order at our flat. Still, there are things one needs to keep. Mementoes from the past that one wants to look over from time to time. Things you treasure - photos, old letters and such. I found one box full of mine, hidden quietly in a corner of my old room, and took it home to sort through.
In this box were pieces of my life over the past 33 years. Most of my milk teeth and two molars that were removed prior to my having braces at age 18. The tin piggy bank I had filled with coins in childhood. My timetable, GCSE exam schedules and some notebooks from school in the UK. A few old diaries. Still sticky puffy stickers I'd saved of 80s toy characters. Four albums and half a dozen envelopes of stamps. (I wonder if those will be worth anything now, and hope I can find out.) Finally, the little leaflets that came with my most precious toys, toys that would fetch a fair price now on eBay, some of which are still intact.
The brochures I kept were those of my pink rosebud-bodied Fisher Price Mandy doll, Rainbow Brite and her friends (I had Rainbow Brite and Twink, Shy Violet and IQ Sprite, and Starlite), the original Strawberry Shortcake dolls (mine were Apricot and Hopsalot, Apple Dumplin' and Tea Time Turtle and the ballerina Strawberry Shortcake), a first-release Popples plush toy, the Wild Puffalump elephant that sat on my bed at boarding school for 3 years and the birth certificate of my Cabbage Patch Kids doll.
Funny how some habits start young. I still keep the leaflets and instruction manuals that come with Little A's toys, and wonder if one day they will become collector's items too. Time will tell.