Monday, June 21, 2010

Magazine Collections

Isn't everyone familiar with the story of the vast National Geographic collection? You know the story... someone has a complete set of National Geographic magazines stashed in their basement and if you were to stack them on top of each other, they would probably stand several stories high! The magazine collection takes up half of the basement and it was necessary to hire a truck to haul them all away!  These stories usually surface when a house owner has passed on, and the family members who have come to clear out the house have made the 'grisly' discovery in the basement; a vast collection of the familiar yellow publications moldering away.

I don't know what I find the most unsettling about this urban legend (actually true story), the amount of magazines one can collect over a few decades or how much stuff can be 'stashed' away in a basement.

Hub & I have lived in the same house now for 24 years, which is a long time. I have lived longer in this house than any other during my whole life.  I really like this fact. And truthfully I have prided myself on how well I have kept our home 'thinned' out. 'Thinning', is the word I use to describe de-cluttering with a purpose. We're all familiar with how to de-clutter - this concept is well circulated these days!  Perhaps I don't always adhere strictly to the rules, but I am aware of them. . So we try to stay on the phoning lists for great organizations such as Canadian Diabetes or Big Sisters & Brothers of the Fraser Valley to assure that their  wonderful volunteers will call our house every other month asking if we have clothing or small household items to donate. I always say yes!

Further, I have always generously given away mine & my children's clothing to our local thrift shops and our local church charity stores. I have made a concerted effort to keep our possessions current, useful and relevant.
I keep our family photos in photo-boxes (most of the time), & my now-grown children's old school artwork & report cards in special totes (hopefully I will be able to give these collections to them in the near future). As for anything else not necessary to our lives during the year (necessities would include seasonal decorations & all my gardening accessories), it must go!
I was a bit shocked at the number of Real Simple & Martha Stewart magazines that I had stashed in our basement, under my night stand & in the closet of my sewing room, plus a very large amount in our laundry room!  I am talking hundreds of them. I couldn't believe it. I would hate to do the math, you know where you add up how much you had spent on magazine subscriptions over the years. And I do mean over the years as I have magazines dating back as far as 1993. Oh my. 
Well they are all boxed up now, in the back of my minivan, ready to go to our local thrift store drop off. I will breath a sigh of relief today as I drive away from the drop-off zone; a narrow escape from a nasty urban legend.


Unknown said...

I am sitting here laughing as I just brought home a stack of Vanity Fairs from Bob's collection!(Such good writing!)Not to mention the two decades of Gourmets Ian's mom passed along to me when she downsized. I must say, though, that the October 1993 issue came in very handy when I cooked our Thanksgiving dinner here when we were still moving in and I had no cookbooks on hand. On person's treasure...

Knatolee said...

I really need to keep on top of magazines!!! My National Geographic collection, circa 1977-1983, followed me from Ontario to NS to BC to Quebec before I finally, finally ditched it!