Things We Keep

Today's thought

I miss my house.


As I sat on my apartment balcony, drinking my morning coffee, I looked at the vast blue sky as I drank in the sun’s unseasonably warm rays. The trees in their russet and crimson colors stood calm in their beauty, and I heard a few birds singing. I found it odd to still hear the birds chirping away at this mid-November time of year. I wondered if they had perhaps become confused by the extreme weather changes we’ve been experiencing these past few weeks, from seasonably cold to mild and spring-like; hence, not signaling winter’s near arrival.



Although the weather hasn’t been consistent, the now empty flower pots lined up against the wall on my balcony, remind me of the cold winds and temperatures we’ve had in late October causing the flowers to shrivel and die. I began thinking about the flowers I so lovingly tended to in my old house –  the home I moved away from only 10 months ago. I recalled that with every change in weather, my flowers and plants would react.


By this time of year, I’d have already prepared blankets of burlap to wrap around the feeble trees and shrubs to defend them against winter’s onslaught of wind and snow. I couldn’t help but wonder if the new owners would do the same.


I thought about the beautiful shed my husband built with his brothers that housed all of our garden tools and furniture. And then I thought about how we have given all those things away because we’d no longer have use or storage for them.


No longer would I carry the groceries from my car directly through the garage door into the house. It’s now become a long walk through the underground parking, through the building corridors, up the elevator and back down the corridor to my door after bundling my groceries into an old shopping buggy I’d kept for decades.


It’s strange how I kept that shopping buggy from the days I lived in my little apartment – the one I moved into when I left the family home and my childhood behind. That buggy has been with me for over 35 years.


When I met my husband and we built our first home, he wanted to toss the shopping cart. I told him we never know when it may come in handy. He laughed as he shook his head and called me a packrat.


We threw the cart up on the storage shelves he’d built in the garage and there it sat until we moved 3 more times, and by then he no longer threatened to throw it out, but stored it neatly at the back of yet another shelf in each consequent house we moved to.


When we moved here this past winter, the handy cart helped me carry numerous loads of items back and forth up from the house to the car to the condo. And then I reminded my husband about how convenient this little cart had been and how handy it will be for bringing up groceries from the car.


Sure the old buggy has lost its shiny, silvery, luster, and one of the legs is missing its rubber capped foot, but I’ve had it for decades and it’s served its worth thousands of times over. Besides, they don’t build things the way they used to; built to last.



40 thoughts on “Things We Keep

  1. What a wonderful little story of your moves and how useful that shopping cart has been over the years… I smiled when you said to your Hubby, you never know when it might come in handy.. ( a favourite saying of my own hubby and you should see our garage and it has been cleared out a lot at that LOL )..
    I hope the mild weather continues.. We have gales and rain at the moment.. And I am sure some one is loving your old plants in your old home..

    Love and Hugs Sue xxx 🙂


    1. Lol Sue, I know it’s usually the men who say those things, and between me and my husband, I honestly don’t know who is worse at the saving game. We do help one another talk each other out of things, but some things are always saved ‘just in case’. LOL.
      I do think there has been some strange weather going on everywhere, as usual. Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico is currently experiencing a cold spell, which apparently we are to get the tail of it come this weekend. Normally at this time of year it’s not uncommon to see snow and temps around 40 degrees F. But we went from that a few weeks ago (without the snow), to the currently high 50’s temps and quite mild. Is it any wonder the plants are confused? ❤


  2. I sense a wistfulness in this post, and underneath that, gratitude for a humble helper, your rickety cart. The leaves are glorious!

    Because we live in a large tri-level now and a lawn with 18 oak trees that shed from November until May, we need to look for something smaller, especially at our age. I dread the purging that must happen, but know it’s for the better. Today I look at another property. Mary Peacock says, “To save, one must value. To throw away, one must value moving on.”

    In my mind, I imagine that when we move I’ll have 7 things I like better, and 3 that I miss. Okay, my calculation may be a bit “off,” but at least I’m counting the cost.


    1. It sounds like you’ll be endeavoring into that phase I just went through last winter – the downsizing effect. It certainly has its up and down sides Marian. The purge had been ongoing with us since 2 previous moves, still, it can be hard to part with some things we may no longer have use for, yet feel as though we will. It requires a whole different mindset. Feel free to vent to me, as I know this change only too well. ❤


  3. This post is so poignant and relatable. We all look back with nostalgia and even though we made choices willfully, that doesn’t mean we don’t miss the things we left behind. I love this one, Debby.


    1. Thanks Deb. That’s the way it seems to be. We hate throwing things out, and somewhere down the years, we regret throwing out something that may have only taken up space for decades. 🙂


      1. It’s a constant small battle between me and my husband. I’m much more attached to things than he is. He’d have tossed out the supermarket buggy as soon as I stopped needing it! In fact, he’s already incinerated one of those!


  4. What lovely memories, Debby. I was thinking about the oldest item I still have which has always been with me. Sadly, it’s a pair of jeans I wore back in the early 1980’s which I have absolutely no chance of ever getting back into.


  5. I miss my house too Debby… 😦 I took a huge downgrade in housing when I left Albuquerque. (Was a 38% pay raise worth it? No. Especially when even with that raise, I can’t buy another home.)
    LOL, Loved Sally’s comment about lifetime guarantees and first husbands. 😀 Hugs all ’round. Wishing us all a thriving Thursday.


    1. So, it seems we’re two peas in a pod Teag. It seems the housing market keeps inflating, and no matter what we sold our homes for, they keep rising here and where you live. The cost of living salaries aren’t in accord with the actual cost of living, making the housing market so expensive. But we have to think forward; dwelling on the past never solved anything. 🙂 And lol, isn’t Sal just a hoot? Happy thriving Thursday to you too Teag. ❤


  6. Hi Debby,
    I signed up again under a second Email just to make sure I am getting your posts. Thanks for the promotion of my Blogversary Party this morning! (Still morning here in L.A.!)


    1. Oh great Janice. You mean to say you weren’t getting them? Please keep me posted. Lol, it seems we’re always trying to solve the technical mysteries between us. And always happy to share others. I’ve been posting your board on Pinterest too. And yes, I know you’re in L.A. In 5 weeks I’ll be sharing your time zone for 2 whole months while spending it in Arizona. 🙂


  7. Ahh… I hurt for my Twin. I would miss my house too, even though it’s old. But it’s brick and solid, warm and cozy, and I have my lovely gazebo to shade me from the elements. This must really be tough on you. My heart reaches out across the miles.


  8. I’m (not) looking forward to doing the same.
    I took over the garden here at my parent’s house over 6 years ago – it was buried in weeds, brambles and couch grass. I spent an entire summer triple digging it, extracting as many roots as I could, and then the next year planted an entirely new flower garden from scratch.
    With a few exceptions of things that didn’t thrive, its now maturing nicely, and I spend time just looking at it with pleasure, but also wondering what will become of it when the house is inevitably sold – my parents are now 95 and 96.
    When they are gone, I will move full time to my house in the Highlands, but I will always think and wonder about my lovely garden, and if the new owners will take as much care of it, or if they will dig it up and change it all.
    Perhaps I’m best not knowing…


    1. Deb, you know exactly how I felt leaving many of my labours of love behind in the past 15 years, we’ve built beautiful garden and planted baby trees that have grown immensely through the years (I still pass by them occasionally). It’s a learning curve when you’re sentimental to learn to let it go and hope you’ve passed on something someone else will come to love. You too will create a new garden. It’s like writing our books, we leave our creations behind wherever we go. We leave a mark. 🙂


  9. Look at that color! The cart makes me feel better about all those things I save, “Just in case.” I can’t imagine how it feels to leave behind a home. I know I will have to do it sooner or later. There isn’t another place I’d rather be. I have all it takes to run a place like this, including a big orange tractor and some chainsaws. Many of these things will go to my sons, but most will need a new home. It must feel good to have that sorting and downsizing project behind you. Now you can travel!


    1. I admire you Elaine for your strength and commitment to stay and maintain your home and property; you are a powerhouse my friend.
      You have no idea how much we purged after downsizing 3 houses in the last 5 years to this condo. It literally sucked the wind out of our sails, but yes, it is nice to breathe again. Four more weeks off to the payoff for all this, Arizona! Expect some magnificent photos come January and February! 🙂


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