AN ORDERLY PASSION
"In the...whirlwind of passion, you must acquire and beget temperance."
--William Shakespeare, Hamlet
When buying treasures from yard sales, thrift shops, and flea markets, I find I must be careful not to over accumulate or buy randomly. Collecting in a haphazard manner will contribute to a mismatched, jarring decor that is the opposite of peaceful. I must control my passion for bargains in order to obtain my goals.
To accomplish this, I carry an index card in my organizer that reminds me of my current specific wants and needs. When I discover myself at a yard sale, instead of browsing with no clear goal in mind, I use my list as a guideline. This way, I am more likely to focus and find the items that contribute to a harmonious home and a balanced budget. Here is what is currently listed on my index card:
- Quality plates and serving ware (blue and white to add to my collection; other pretty pieces to give as gifts or to use decoratively).
- On-and-lonelies (single teacups of fine china to add to the collection hanging on hooks in our kitchen).
- Crystal glasses and stemware. (The finer ones are taken to an engraver for monograms and given to special friends in gift baskets, along with a bottle of fine wine or sparkling cider.)
- Handmade linens, handkerchiefs, and tablecloths (to use as-is or as curtains, in gift baskets, or as fabric for children's dresses).
- Anything needlepoint (in appropriately muted colors--to make throw pillows, cover chair seats, or to frame as art).
- Wooden desk chair ( for the desk in the kitchen).
- A four-cup carafe for a small coffee maker (for Dad, to replace the one I broke).
- Any Louisa May Alcott books (to add to my collection, as she is my very favorite author--also to pass on to my children).
- Pretty teapots. (Cracked ones are okay, as I convert them into lamps, flower vases, and pen or glue-stick holders; I give undamaged ones as gifts in baskets, or add them to my personal collection.)
- Silver pitchers and trays (for daily use to serve iced water, cold tea or milk; also to use as gifts; the pitchers also make lovely flower vases).
- Unused candles. (These enhance a dull evening or ordinary meal and make the house smell and look prettier.)
- Quality baskets (for girls' hair bows, bands and brushes; to store rolled towels; and for gift baskets).
- [DVD's] ....of favorite classic movies.
- Miniature loaf pans, mini muffin tins, and Bundt (R) cake pans (for baking snack size breads and regular bread for children's lunches, or to include in gift baskets, or to use as party finger foods).
- Antique metal or wooden gates (to add character to the garden, or to mount onto the wall behind beds to create interesting headboards, or to act as a trellis for climbing plants and vines in the garden).
- Attractive, well-priced furniture that offers storage and function as well as quality armoires; bookcases (all sizes); china cabinets; vintage child's chair; and easy chairs to tuck into cozy comforts.