Keepsakes – to keep or not to keep

We are in the throws of evaluating what we keep and what we toss. It is sometimes a very painful process.
Here is the flow chart that we came up with for choosing what keepsakes we pack in our limited space on the plane to Spain, what we keep in storage here in the States, and what we pass on.

Accessories of keepsake<Keepsake<Using/Playing with Keepsake<the Giver of the Keepsake


Let me introduce you to “Play Elli” (left), “Part-of-the-family Elli” (center), and “Mommy’s Elli” (Right)


Tied to keepsakes are a host of other accessories. Crystal has a doll from her childhood, and everything that comes with a baby. (I am actually confident we could raise Tanzen with fewer accessories than most dolls have.) Those bibs, strollers, and bonnets are all nice, but the doll trumps the accessories. In the pile of accessories, we could actually lose the doll. So when in question, the accessories get the boot first.
Then the keepsake itself comes under consideration. What type of value have we assigned to it? Does it remind us of something significant, or are we just holding on to it because we have always kept it? If it carries no emotional weight, it has become dead weight.
Following the evaluation of the keepsake, we then look at whether it will continue to remind us of something significant and eventually mean something to Tanzen. Can it be used or displayed? This doll will remind us of nothing if we never see it, and it for sure will hold limited value to Tanzen if she never sees it or plays with it. So, if it cannot be displayed or used, why are we holding on to it?
At the end of the line is the person to which the keepsake ties us. A doll is special because it connects us to the giver, or even ourselves at a certain time. That is where the true value lies. A doll is about $.05 of plastic and cloth, but its value is incalculable when we recognize that holding that doll reminds us of our grandparents and playing in their living room. That is what the keepsake is there for, and we cherish it.

We don’t want that memory to be lost in the pile of excess.