Wednesday, September 16, 2009
Finally, week four is here.
We have been so bad about doing our Five Boxes work.
We are ashamed.
There have been actual excuses, like being on vacation.
There have been lame excuses, like we were just too tired.
We have not done our best.
We aren’t even attacking the cellar yet! We’re still just cleaning out the dining room.
So, here’s what we found…
Martin’s Equation Tables: Designed to Furnish Merchants, Manufacturers and Other Business Men, with an Accurate Set of Calculations for Averaging Accounts, and Enabling the Book-Keeper to Perform, with Great Facility and Dispatch, what has hitherto Been a Tedious Process in the Science of Equations, George W. Martin, Fifth Edition, 1854 - moldy
The Mother’s Encyclopedia, in Six Volumes, The Parents’ Institute, Inc., New York, NY, 1942
Who’s Who, Tercentenary Pictorial Issue 1940, Directory of Stratford (Sheila’s great-grandfather Patrick Bowe is listed in the telephone section, phone number 7-0358-J), 1940
1849-1949 A Century of Achievement in which the Springfield Fire and Marine Insurance Company of Springfield, Massachusetts recounts the Story of a Century of Constant Devotion to Protection against Loss and Fire and Other Perils, with a cellophane book cover, 1949
Britannica, Great Books of the Western World, Volume 19 Thomas Aquinas: I, 1952
Britannica, Great Books of the Western World, Volume 20 Thomas Aquinas: II, 1952
Bibliography of American Literature, Volume 2, George W. Cable to Timothy Dwight, 1957
The Philosophy of the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries, Richard H. Popkin, 1966
Introduction to the Philosophy of St. Thomas Aquinas, IV. Metaphysics, 1967 – Former library book
The Rhine Flows into the Tiber, Fr. Ralph M. Wiltgen, 1985
This is the collection without a copyright date:
Art-Type Edition, The World’s Popular Classics
Books, Inc. Publishers, New York, Boston
Plays of Henrik Ibsen
Candide and Other Tales, Francois Voltaire
The Vicar of Wakefield, Oliver Goldsmith
A Child’s Garden of Verses, Robert Louis Stevenson
Sherlock Holmes Detective Stories, A. Conan Doyle
Wee Willie Winkie, Rodyard Kipling
Poems of Longfellow
The Luck of Roaring Camp, Bret Harte
Madame Bovary, Gustave Flaubert
The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam
The Philosophy of Spinoza
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Samuel L. Clemens
Age of Reason, Thomas Paine
Sapho, Alphonse Daudet
The Autocrat of the Breakfast Table, Oliver Wendell Holmes
The City of the Dreadful Night and Other Stories, Rudyard Kipling
The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Victor Hugo
Pinocchio, C. Collodi
Christmas Stories, Charles Dickens
Ardath, The Story of a Dead Self, Marie Corelli, New York: A. L. Burt. Publisher
Mark Twain Books
Mark Twain Himself, Milton Meltzer, 1960 – 2 copies
The Life and Times of Mark Twain, Dennis Welland, 1991
Mark Twain and His World, Justin Kaplan, Simon and Schuster, 1974
Mark Twain and His World, Justin Kaplan, Crescent Books, 1974
Mark Twain A to Z, R. Kent Rasmussen, 1995
The Unabridged Mark Twain, Volume 1, Courage Books, with Opening Remarks by Kurt Vennegut, Jr. – wrapped in cellophane
The Innocents Abroad, Mark Twain, The Heritage Press, 1962 – with an inscription on first page
The War Prayer, Mark Twain, 1970
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain, 1989
Twain / Stowe Sourcebook, Elaine Cheesman and Earl French, 1989 – Curriculum Resource Materials
Friday, August 28, 2009
I guess that’s part of the reason lately (ok, most of my life) that I have all of the things I do. I don’t make the time to sort through and make decisions about things. I’m finding that I want to spend time on activities that are going to make my life better. Like working, building my video game company, spending time with my family, going out and doing fun things.
But that’s not the only reason. I can go right back to the question above and ask myself, “Can you throw it away, Nick?” Well, I’m finding that I care less about the things that weren’t mine to begin with, so I’m more ready to throw those things away that I originally thought had value. My own things? Hmm… I’m still stuck on that question.
There are four categories I see my stuff falling into. Things that are sentimental to me, things that may be useful in the future, things I think may have value and things I’d like to give to my kids when they’re old enough.
The sentimentality is something that has been more apparent lately. I have a cardboard box that my grandfather gave me with odds and ends supplies in it like nails, screws, brackets, holders, etc. Well the box is past being on its last flap and I had to replace it. The box is still sitting in the dining room. It was my grandfather’s. One of the two possessions I definitively know that he gave me. (Well, he gave me the stuff inside. The box was an incidental container.) What am I going to do with an unusable cardboard box? Should I re-tape it and try to make it useful again? That may work if I spend some time and effort on it. But here’s the catch; it was the box that my supplies have been in for the past 18 years. (Wow has it been that long already!) It’s the supply box! So not only does it have my memory of my grandfather attached to it, it has a designation too – it’s the supply box! Oy! What am I going to do with myself? That’s just silly. But it’s the thing to uncover since this is a piece of what’s holding the stuff around. We’ll come back to this.
The next category is the useful things. The useful things are good. I’m not ready to part with useful things. I would like them all to have a place and all be in their place so when we need to use them we know we have them and they are easily accessible. I know we have things lost in the basement that we need on the rare occasion. And I know we have things that we don’t even know we could be using. The first is more frustrating. The second is surprising and exciting when we find we have a useful thing and then sometimes frustrating when we realize we went and bought something similar since we didn’t know we had one in hiding. But is it even worth the time to go through everything in the approximate 200+ boxes in our basement to pull out the few useful things we have down there? Would the time spent be more than the money saved? One of the hooks here is that if I did go down to the basement to throw everything out, I’m sure I would start seeing the useful things and get distracted with pulling them out, thereby expending many more hours. Uh.
Next category. I have lots of little things that seem to have some value in them. This mostly contains paperwork, like old bills, ideas I’ve written down, things from my music career and lots of articles pulled out of Wired magazine. Boxes of paperwork. Probably 10 to 20 Hammermill Paper boxes full of paperwork. If you work in an office type environment you’ll know the boxes I’m talking about. The ones that fit 12 reams of 250 sheets of paper. That’s a lot of paper I’ve got collected. And I’m sure if I emptied my filing cabinet out I’d fill up another 10 boxes.
And lastly, how many books can my kids read? Mostly what I have for my kids are my sci-fi books and my comic books. Would my kids even care? Genny has more toys and books at five than I could have accumulated in my first 20 years of life. She likes fairies and princesses. And doesn’t like boys. What makes me think she would be interested in my male-leaning super hero comic books? That means it’s probably all going to go to Cole. If he ends up liking comic books. Instead of sports or video games or sports video games. And again, how many books can he read? I’ve got a few thousand comic books. And would I be able to let him touch them before he’s at an age that he would respect the value of these ‘possible’ collector’s items? The items that defined my youth? Ha! I’d probably be watching over him like a hawk. That would be fun for both of us (sarcasm)! So what am I saving these for again? Did I just talk myself out of giving my youth to my children? Am I so tied to the identity of my youth that I can’t give this part of my life to my kids?
This brings me to another thought. My things define who I am. Giving or throwing them away is like giving away me! How can I do that? Like the box from my grandfather, it’s a piece of him… my things are a piece of me.
Why am I so desperately trying to hold on to me? Will I lose myself if I give away my things?
Sometimes I wish for it all to burn up or get lost in a flood. Here’s a big knock on my noggin that that doesn’t happen. But there are times I have wished that it gets taken from me so there’s nothing I can do about it but move on. But really deep down inside I don’t want that to happen. It just seems like a good way out of my situation without having to do the work. Would that resolve the issues I have inside me that are keeping the things where they are? No. It would be like the people who try to run away from their lives. You can’t escape yourself. You have to go through it. And hey! That’s why we’re doing this blog in the first place! J So we’re in the right place.
So, why am I so desperately trying to hold on to me?
When I was in my twenties I had a girlfriend that said I couldn’t remember anything. And from that point on I remember not being able to remember things as well. Did my collectionistic behavior start then? It runs in my family, so I’m pretty sure it existed before then. Maybe it’s just gotten worse with age. And now with my life being full up with kids and work and video games and new software programs, I know that some of the information leaks out my ears and I just don’t seem to be remembering as much and I think it’s probably gotten a bit worse from that.
Am I afraid of forgetting? When I try to compare Cole now to Genny at his age I have trouble remembering what she was like. Ok, I don’t seem to remember at all.
And here’s another thought that just popped up. When I was young I wanted to save and record everything in my life. I would daydream about how that could be accomplished. I still have ticket stubs from concerts and birthday cards from my family from years ago. At the end of our lives will we have a chance to sit down and review everything before Him and account and reminisce about our lives? Will we be judged? Am I trying to collect evidence from my life to show that I’ve tried to live as a good person?
Wow, that would be weird if this was all because I want to be loved. If I save these things, I’ll be able to show someone that I was a good person and they will be able to see it all right there in front of them and say to me, “Yes Nick, you’ve done a good job. We love you.”So, I have it all here. I’m ready to prove myself. Please come and look at my stuff.
Monday, August 17, 2009
And to make matters worse, we came home from our vacation with more stuff!
We did have our first sale while we were gone though.
We sold a cool old book from our Etsy store, "The Personality of Insects." So I will be off to the post office today.
Hopefully, Nick and I will be sorting through more stuff this weekend!
Wednesday, August 5, 2009
The emotions that came up the first week we started our project ranged from amazement at finding what looked to be a first edition of Les Miserables, frustration at finding the baby toys that we just repurchased since we couldn’t find this box, frustration that we were unwrapping a big box of dishes that we would need to rewrap, fascination at the old sugar bowl and excitement in having things so old and possibly valuable, and amusement that the set of cups, saucers and dessert plates we unwrapped and decided to keep (since they were a really nice set), happened to have their matching dinner, salad and appetizer plates in our cupboards waiting for their long lost cousins. We obviously thought the plates were nice enough to keep the first time around too, now it’s nice to have the whole set together.
The second week brought up a lot of emotions around respect. Respect for elders like Sissy whose style and personality show through the most in the possessions still in the house. For the old things around the house, mostly the books that we’ve been going through the past two weeks. And for the religious items that Sissy was so fond of.
Week three was a bit different. I’m over the old books. We have so many old books; I’m getting ready to part with the less older ones. I know I’m not going to read any of them. I don’t have time to read the books I need to read, never mind the books that I would like to read for enjoyment. I’m still amazed at the books from pre-1900. Especially of note are the books from 1805… that’s only 30 years after the country was born. Wow. Cool.
When we first moved into the house I found the book Soils and Men, Yearbook of Agriculture, United States Department of Agriculture. That interested me then because it was so old and it still interests me now since we have a garden. I may read that book someday when I have the time and want to learn about gardening and soil more. Not too likely, but maybe. But Les Miserables? I really doubt I’ll have the time to read that nor do I really have the interest. Ok, it’s supposedly a classic, but I’m sure there are others I could read. Just because we have a classic book in our house doesn’t mean I have to read it, does it? They’re strange rationalizations but these are the type of unconscious thoughts that have me keeping the stuff in our house.
And Sissy’s religious items. From our book list you can guess what a good portion of the house is filled with. It’s reflected in the paintings on all the walls (and piled in the cellar) and the other little knick knacks around the house. I’m not so religious that I would read any of the books. And not enough that I would want the paintings on every wall, especially since the frames are pretty worn and old and a lot of them are falling apart. Because of the sheer number of them, some have to go. But how do I get rid of these things? I’m guessing most people wouldn’t care much about things that are not theirs. But I have respect for my wife’s family and religion. Do I have too much respect?
I’m thinking this post is helping me. I think I may be able to part with a little bit more from gaining this insight.
Really… the pictures in the basement really are in bad shape. Some are even… ahh!… moldy. And yet we’re still keeping them down there. And some of the frames are broken. Are they antiques? Would an antique frame be worth anything if it was fixed? I’m sure we don’t have the little pieces of wood that have fallen off of them. And who has the time to find out if they’re antiques, let alone fix them? I don’t care enough about them nor do I have the expertise to do that. And I can’t imagine that they’re worth enough to make up for the time spent.
Is it possible to have too much respect – to the point that it’s a detriment to one’s life? Well, if we got sick because there’s mold in the house that would be a detriment. And like I said in a previous post, there’s the whole aspect of the time, money and resources in keeping and managing this stuff.
Does anyone even know I care that much? I don’t even know if my wife cares that much about her family’s stuff. She may, but I don’t know; I could be respecting in vain. I wouldn’t want to nor could I stop myself from caring as much as I do. But I’m sure I can find other ways to show it. And I could pick something I know she would like.
I think it’s time to ditch some stuff.
Monday, August 3, 2009
Well, we have an excuse. We were away for the whole weekend. That's not a good excuse.
This getting-rid-of-stuff-thing is not easy.
In fact, we came home from this weekend with more stuff: an exercauser someone was throwing away (it's newer than the one we got off Freecycle), and a newer playmat than the one we borrowed from my step-sister. How could I turn down good, free baby stuff?
We need help.
I will at least try to get some more books listed on our Etsy store. This shall be my penance.
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Check it out!
Please note that I have just set this shop up, so at the moment there is only one item listed.
I chose James Joyce's Ulysses as our first vintage book.
By visiting our store you will be supporting the Five Boxes mission...to clean out our lives!
We will be offering our stuff at good prices.
Be sure to tell your friends about our sites!
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
The Turin Shroud is Genuine, Hoare, Rodney, 1994.
Living Flame of Love, St. John of the Cross, 1962.
The Passion of Fulton Sheen, Rev. Noonan, 1972.
This Tremendous Lover, Boylan, Eugene M., 1966.
The Essential Erasmus, Dolan, John P., 1964.
The Teacher, The Mind, Aquinas, Thomas, 1965.
Why Am I Afraid to Love?, Powell, John, 1982.
Agenda for the Third Millennium, Pope John Paul II, 1996
The Vatican II Weekday Missal, 1975
Classic Catholic Converts, Connor, Fr. Charles P., 2001
The Sacrament of Penance, Tobin, Rev. Eamon, 1983
New… St. Joseph Sunday Missal, 1976
Liturgical Question Box, Elliott, Peter J., 1998
As I Lay Dying, Neuhaus, Richard John, 2002
My Daily Bread, 1954
The Church Emerging from Vatican II, Doyle, Dennis M., 2000
The Size of Chesterton’s Chatholicism, Fagerberg, David W., 1998
Padre Pio, the Stigmatist, Carty, Rev. Charles Mortimer, 1973 – Sheila kept this
Padre Pio, His Life and Mission, Ingoldsby, 1978 – Sheila kept this
The Catholic Church through the Ages, Harney, Martin P., 1974 – Sheila kept this
What Went Wrong with Vatican II, McInerny, Ralph M., 1998
Christian Prayer: The Liturgy of the Hours, 1976
The Catholic Martyrs of the Twentieth Century, Royal, Robert, 2000 – Signed by the Author
The Meaning of Vocation, John Paul II, 1999
The Following of Christ, Kempis, Thomas A., 1952 – Sheila kept this
Life of Christ, Sheen, Fulton J., 1977 – Inscription “Mary Ethel gave me this book, June 23, 1992, Margaret M. Bowe”
The New American Bible, 1971
Mercy My Mission, Michalenko, Sister Sophia, 1995
The Apparitions at Medjugorje Prolonged, Laurentin, Rene, 1987
The New American Bible, Saint Joseph Edition, 1970
Born Catholics, Sheed, F.J., 1954
Mother Angelica, her life story, O’Neill, 1992
A Short History of the Catholic Church, Holmes, J. Derek & Bickers, Bernard W., 1984
Saint Patrick and the Irish, Cushing, Richard Cardinal, 1979
Moods and Truths, Sheen Fulton J., 1950
History of the Confederate States Navy, Scharf, J. Thomas, 1996
Directory of Specialized American Bookdealers 1984-1985, 1984
The Joys of Fishing, Gowen, Emmett, 1961
The Longing for Home, Buechner, Frederick, 1996 – Sheila kept this
A Room Called Remember, Buechner, Frederick, 1984 – Sheila kept this
Dr. Atkins’ Health Revolution, Atkins, Robert C., 1988
Caner Has Its Privileges, Clifford, Christine, 2002
The Essays of Michel Eyquem de Montaigne, 1952
Victorian Illustrated Books, Muir, Percy, 1971
The Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States of America, 1998
The Wit and Wisdom of Mark Twain, 1990
Caught Me a Big ‘Un… and then I let him go!, Houston, Jimmy, 1996
Ulysses, Joyce, James, 1961
The Works of Alexander Pope, 1808, Volumes 8, 9 & 10
The Miscellaneous Works of Oliver Goldsmith, in Six Volumes, 1809, Volumes 1, 3, 4, & 5
The Spectator, in Ten Volumes, 1810, Volumes 4 & 5
The Works of Reverend Johnathan Swift, in Twenty Four Volumes, 1813, Volumes, 8, 9, 13, 19, 23, 24
The Literary World, Volume 12 (1881), 13 (1882) & 15 (1884) – Newspaper/Magazine published every 2 weeks, about new books that were published in the last two weeks and reviews
Glories of Mary, Liguori, St. Alphonsus, 1888
Milton’s Paradise Lost, Books I & II & Lycidas, Sprague, Homer B., 1896
Quiet Talks on Prayer, Gordon, S.D., 1904
Passionist Mission-Book, 1912
Revival Incidents, Carradine, Beverly, 1913
Rule of Conduct, 1917
The Vest Pocket Lawyer, 1923
Jamaica Inn, Maurier, Daphne du, 1937
Let’s Start Over Again, Young, Vash, 1933
Power through Repose, Call, Annie Payson, 1937
Soils and Men, Yearbook of Agriculture, United States Department of Agriculture, 1938 – Nick wants this one
The Pater Noster of St. Teresa, 1942
Following of Christ, Kempis, Thomas A., 1948
The Second Spring, Newman, Cardinal, 1931
My Daily Reading from the Four Gospels, Father Stedman, 1941
In His Name, 1941
New Testament, 1941
Monday, July 27, 2009
Good morning, week 3.
“I have to clean the house just to get to the stuff we’re sorting,” Nick says.
We’re still working on the dining room full of books.
Here are a few of the interesting things we found...
Some kind of guidebook, Beatificazione, 2003 – Mom’s last trip to Italy, two tickets and a receipt inside.
Fairfield Country Catholic, May 2005, Volume 22, No. 5, 2 copies, Farwell to John Paul II. (JUNK!)
A Western Union Telegram, September 14, for Sheila’s great grandparent’s wedding anniversary, from “The boys from the little stone house."
Some more old books, too, of course!
And...here is the pile of junk we threw away. Yes, I know it's small.
So, check out the next posting to see the list of books.
And stay tuned...we're working on creating a sister-blog where we'll list all the books and stuff we're offering for sale!
Saturday, July 25, 2009
Here I was waiting for Nick to upload the photos from week 2 onto my computer so I could post some and he already had. He just forgot to tell me.
So, before we move on to week 3, here's some stuff from week 2!
Here is the pile!
A postcard from 1954 to my great aunt from Paris.
A postcard to Sissy from 1951 of the pope with just "Saw his body today" written on the back. No one even signed the postcard.
That's it for now. I'm not sure what we'll be looking at for week 3!
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Cleaning. Who wants to clean?
Does it add to one's enjoyment in life?
Does it put food on the table?
Ok, this is only week number 2 and I'm having trouble following through. There are so many more important things in life to handle. Things that put food on the table. Things like reading emails, job hunting, gardening (literally putting food on the table - I couldn't resist that one).
So really, why bother cleaning?
I have an answer to that.
When my cousin Alison moved from Texas to New York, she shipped her worldly possessions in a moving truck. Since I only had a small apartment in the city, all of her things were not going to fit with all of my things. So we put most of her stuff and some of my stuff in storage. After a while we realized that spending that money every month wasn't the best, so we got rid of things, moved things around and put the rest over at my dad's. But unfortunately, dad's shed isn't moisture or mouse proof and Alison lost the queen size mattress to mold and things got eaten.
When Sheila's mom passed away and her step-father moved out of this house, we helped him move his stuff to storage. When he moved to Texas he took a few of his prized possessions and, being that most of the stuff he had in storage was originally his wife's, he gave that to her daughter, Sheila, along with the other stuff they had in storage prior to them moving into this house. So we inherited two storage spaces worth of their stuff.
I knew from moving Alison into my apartment, out of my apartment, into another apartment, moving my brother into NYC, moving both separately my apartment and Sheila's apartment from Hell's Kitchen to Jackson Heights, and moving various other friends in New York, all in the time of four years that moving to Connecticut was going to be a big task. So each weekend, as we were house hunting, which lasted six months, we moved boxes into one of the storage spaces left to us by Sheila's step-father.
When it came time to finally move we hired movers. I didn't want to lose friends by asking them yet again to help me move, plus we were going to take a whole week day off from work to do it. The guys I found were really good at packing little items into every space of that truck. I hired them for four hours. And extended it another two. And extended it another two. These guys packed every tiny item from our apartment into that 18' Penske truck. I know how to pack things pretty good after living in New York City for 13+ years and even I was impressed with how much they got in there. It took the two of them, Sheila and I eight solid hours of packing. Now, I'm only talking about moving things to the van and loading them in the van. Sheila and I had taken the day before to pack things into boxes. We knew enough not to leave it to the day of the move. And our mini-van was packed tight too. And still we had to throw things away. Eight full hours of loading, and Sheila and I worked another two hours after that. Plus the full day of packing the day before.
When we left that night, the Penske truck swayed from side to side as I drove up I95. There was so much weight from the contents that the truck could have tipped over. I couldn't go over 40 miles an hour. What does it cost to replace a moving truck? I'm glad I didn't have to find out.
While it was nice that Sheila recovered some of her childhood possessions, we didn't need the expense of two storage spaces. So over the next eight months, we condensed one of the storage spaces into the other. After getting repair work done in the basement and throwing out half of the contents from there, we decided to get rid of the expense of the second storage space. I again hired movers to help. There were over 100 boxes in storage. It's now all in our basement. Using the packing skills learned in NYC, I've piled the boxes floor to ceiling and now there's only a goat path through the basement. You can get to the electric box, boiler and water heater and that's it, as you can see from the pictures in Sheila's post.
There's a cost. For the space to store this stuff – either a storage space in the form of monthly rent, or at dad's house or our house in the form of a mortgage. You wouldn't buy a house so you could have more stuff. But you might not feel like you need to buy a bigger house, which costs more, if you didn't have so much stuff. There's the dollar cost of moving the stuff and the time cost. There's a cost on keeping the stuff in decent condition with heating and air conditioning. There's the time cost spent sorting through the stuff looking for something you can't find since you've got so many boxes to look through or your organization of the stuff is lacking. And the time spent trying to manage it all; piling boxes, moving them around, planning, organizing, hiring, renting, etc.
So why bother cleaning? Are you willing to pay these costs? Ok, I answered a question with a question, but the answer to the first lies in the answer of the second.
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
God the Father, Guerry, Emile, 1947, 1st Edition
Enthronement of the Sacred Heart, Larkin, Francis, Rev., 1956, 1st edition.
The Bread of Life, Rosage, David E., 1979.
Will Religion Make Sense to Your Child?, Larsen, Earnest, 1970.
Do You Worry About the Future, Ed. Huber, M.J., 1970.
Not Without Parables, de Hueck Doherty, Catherine, 1977.
Sobornost, de Hueck Doherty, Catherine, 1977.
Mother Seton, Daughters of St. Paul, 1975.
A Companion to the Summa, Vol. 1, Farrell, Walter, 1945.
A Companion to the Summa, Vol. 2, Farrell, Walter, 1939.
Proceedings of The National Catechetical Congress of the Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Hartford, CT, Oct. 1-4, 1938, 1939.
My Spiritual Exercises, Kearney, John, 1945.
Credo: A Practical Guide to the Catholic Faith, Harrison, Martin, 1954.
Treasury of Prayer, 1954.
Letters of Father De Cloriviere, 1948.
The Way of the River, Ferlita, Ernest, 1977.
Paul VI Dialogues, Clancy, John G., 1965.
On the Truth of the Catholic Faith, St. Thomas Aquinas, 1955.
The Christ of Catholicism, Graham, Dom Aelred, 1957
The Reed of God, Houselander, Caryll, 1968
Keepin Your Balance in the Modern Church, O’Connell, Hugh J., 1968
How to Be REALLY with it, Basset, Bernard, 1971
Winning Converts, O’Brien, Rev. John A., 1957
Updated Devotion to the Sacred Heart, Kern, Rev. Walter, 1975
Daily Prayerbook for Holy Week, 1956
Religious Life, M. R., 1949
In Search of the Beyond, Carretto, Carlo, 1978
In the Beginning, St. Boniface, Sister M., 1969
Is the New Testament Anti-Semitic?, Baum, Gregory, 1965
Three Minutes a Day, Keller, James, 1960
We Agnostics, Basset, Bernard, 1970
A Critical Introduction to the New Testament, Fuller, Reginald H., 1966
Let’s Start Praying Again, Basset, Bernard, 1973
Repentance, Schlink, M. Basilea, 1976
Circular Letters of Pere de Cloriviere, 1957
The Way of Divine Love, Menendez, Sister Josefa, 1950
365 Mary, Koenig-Bricker, Woodeene, 1970
Daily Prayerbook for Holy Week, 1956
Why Am I Tempted, Remler, F. J., 1939
Teilhard Explained, De Lubac, Henri, 1968
A Heroine of the French Revolution Marie Adelaide De Cice, 1962
Sword, Miter, and Cloister, Bouchard, Constance Brittain, 1987
The Religion of the Occident, Larson, Martin A., 1961
Natural Healing, Bricklin, Mark, 1976.
How to Make Clothes that Fit and Flatter, Margolis, Adele P., 1969.
What Flower is That?, Macoboy, Stirling, 1971.
Wild Flowers of America, Rickett, H. W., 1953.
Latin for All Occasions, Beard, Henry, 1990
The Elements of Philosophy, Wallace, William A., 1977
The Ancient History of the Egyptians, Carthaginians, Assyrians, Babylonians, Medes and Persians, Macedonians and Grecians, Mr. Rollin, Translated from the French in Ten Volumes, volume 5, 9th Edition, London, 1800
The Ancient History of the Egyptians, Carthaginians, Assyrians, Babylonians, Medes and Persians, Macedonians and Grecians, Mr. Rollin, Translated from the French in Ten Volumes, volume 10, 9th Edition, London, 1800
The New Testament, Albany, NY, H. C. Southwick, The Second American from the Cambridge Stereotype Edition, 1813
A Catechism of the Catholic Religion, Deharbe, Rev. Joseph, 1878
Manual of Prayers, 1889
The Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola, Mullan, Elder Father, 1914.
The Lily of Israel, Gerbet, the Abbe, 1916
The Hand of God, Scott, Martin J., 1920
American Catholic Hymnal, The Marist Brothers, 1921
English Grammar, Green, John C., 1925.
Religion and Common Sense, Scott, Martin, J., 1926
How to Be Your Own Decorator, Koues, Helen, 1926
Paneling Walls with Wallpaper (pamphlet, excerpt from the book Wallpaper and Wallpaper Hanging), Young, Charles L. 1926
Marion Harland’s Cook Book
Mary Help of Christians, Benziger Brothers’
The Means of Grace, McNeill, Rev. Leon A., 1937
Connecticut State Register and Manual 1941
Connecticut State Register and Manual 1945 and 1946
Treading the Winepress, Stephenson, William, 1946
The Soul of the Apostolate, Chautard, Dom J-B, 1946
As Others See Us, Brenner, Henry, 1948
The Ways of mental Prayer, Lehodey, Right Rev. Dom Vitalis, 1949
Sunday, July 19, 2009
Cole is happily bouncing in his exercauser and Genny is in the living room absorbed by her new Rainbow Fairy sticker and stencil books.
OK—let’s do this thing.
Nick and I are flattening out newspaper from last week’s dishes and I break my pinky nail off. Genny comes in to see what we are doing, sees my broken nail dangling from my finger, grabs it and says, “Ooh, can I keep it?!”
Proof that there really is an “I’ve got to keep it” gene and our daughter has inherited it!
So we made a big pile of books…a big pile of books! And there were a few other miscellaneous items, too.
2 Puzzle 3D—Taj Mahal and Alpine Castle; each with over 1000 pieces
70 Books – 57 religious, 13 other; 5 from pre-1900, 8 from 1900-1929, 7 from 1930-1949, 2 that are definitely old, but missing the page with the copyright on them
Dried flowers in a picture frame
1 crying baby
Sister Corita art book box with articles from the newspaper and prints, too. (This was my mom’s)
Sissy pile of bible and religious pamphlet thingies
1 postcard from Paris to Sissy from 1954 found inside My Spiritual Exercises, Kearney, John, 1945.
Various papers found inside The Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola, Mullan, Elder Father, 1914.
Social Security Act card for Sissy, 1945.
1952 Catholic Calendar card
Sissy typed out “Prayer for Russia – To the Little Flower”
Check back soon to see photos and our list of the books we found this weekend!
Friday, July 17, 2009
Here, for your viewing pleasure, is everything that was inside the first five boxes.
Nick already shared that the first small box had a seemingly first edition of Les Miz.
Now, let's take a peek at box 2 and 3.
Look! All the baby toys we've been missing! A baby fantasyland!
And the big lesson for me--I found a baby nuk holder thingie...just like the one I went out and bought when Cole was a newborn because, wait for it, I couldn't find THIS one! And, to top it off, Cole wouldn't take a nuk, so that was like, four bucks down the drain. If I had been more organized, that nuk holder could have been a Starbucks coffee!
Also found was my favorite stuffed animal as a little girl, Ling-Ling the panda. He could not be thrown away, even though he looks a little raggy. I put him on my dresser.
Box 4 first appeared to be only cookbooks, but on closer examination, there were also a few novels.
Box 5 was full of plates and glasses.
The major score was finding the wooden cup with the little mouse inside that used to sit on Sissy's cabinet when I was little. Whenever we would visit, I would run to peek inside the cup. And notice how Cole is attracted to it, too, as his little hand inches toward it on my leg.
So, at this point we were about an hour into our adventure. My grandmother stopped in for a few minutes and then Cole needed a nursing break and a rousing version of "Wheels on the Bus," then it was decision time.
What to do with all this stuff? Here's the breakdown...
37 books (SOME KEPT - SOME IN GIVE OR SELL BOX)
1 Creative Irish Gifts Catalog from 1998 (JUNK!)
1 Stratford Bard Newspaper from 1998 (JUNK!)
1 Charles Barkley sports card from a cereal box (?)
100 recipe cards (KEPT)
2 broken phones (KEPT for toys)
1 box of my stepfather's dump run business cards (CLAIMED by Genny)
7 stuffies (KEPT)
1 Andy Capp dart feather (JUNK!)
40 baby toys (KEPT)
1 plastic bottle holder (CLAIMED by Genny since we don't use bottles)
1 Target dog bone used as baby toy (KEPT)
11 baby utensils (KEPT)
1 Tweety bird gift bag (KEPT)
1 mouse in wooden cup (KEPT)
7 glasses, maybe hand blown because all slightly different sizes (KEPT)
1 sugar bowl - 1865- Potter Co. - Trenton, NJ (KEPT)
1 baby spoon and 1 plate - Pope-Gossier - China - Patented C26 - Made in China (What to do with ?!)
6 bowls, saucers and tea cups - Noritake - Japan - The Coniston (What to do with ?!)
Pieces of junk? 5
There was also one old book, The Story of Architecture, by Charles Whitaker, from 1934, which we put in the SELL pile.
I sorted through the cookbooks while Nick slipped into the kitchen and returned with all my cookbooks from the closet. So, added bonus, we also cleaned out one kitchen pantry closet shelf. I chose about half the cookbooks to keep and the rest were relegated to the ? box.
I'm proud to say that I even got rid of one of my mother's Family Circle circa 1972 cookbooks after I photographed page 155, the recipe for chicken parmigiana that my sister loved. The page was VERY food stained. Sigh. Normally I would have kept it for sentimental reasons (it's not the kind of cooking I do), but I can't keep everything just because it was my mother's.
I like this idea of photographing sentimental things and then passing them on.
Here is my mother's recipe for bread pudding, which I don't like. Photographed and tossed. Sorry, mom!
That's about it. Lessons learned? We're not good at getting rid of stuff! We've got a lot to learn. And we're going to run into big problems with all the stuff that we don't know if it's valuable or not, but just to be safe, we'll put it into a box, which might end up back in the cellar?!
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
I'm guessing the first edition of this was printed in French. These books also have a copyright of 1886 in them. Is this a first edition in English? It doesn't say. The first edition from this publisher? Who knows? I don't have the time at the moment to find out. But it's old! And I treasure it. And it was a great way to start our journey.
Wait! I put that huge 5 volume copy (of a book I will probably never read) on the 'to keep' shelf.
I was going to say the good news was that no boxes went back into the basement. But the truth is that we really didn't throw much out either. Most of the items were sorted through and we put a small amount back into use like the baby toys we had been missing.
Maybe this isn't a good start after all.
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
When applied to things around the house, it turns into not throwing things away... because they're usefull! "Don't throw that old t-shirt away, it could be a rag. Don't throw that old toothbrush away, you can srub something dirty with it!" Ah!
We have too much stuff!
As Sheila mentioned, this house has been in her family since her great-grandfather built it. There's also a saying about this house. It's the house where people come to die.
From the stories I've heard, Sissy, who was very devout almost went into the convent. She never married, but instead took care of aging relatives when it was their time to pass. While these relatives didn't bring their stuff to the house, everyone else who lived here did. They left and the stuff stayed. And now its our.
5 Boxes Every Weekend started out in another house with a collection problem. We went to visit my dad for the July 4th weekend. Dad has been a bit under the weather lately and he's getting ready to get out of our old house and get something smaller. But instead of a relaxing holiday, I ended up rescuing stuff from a burst pipe that was flooding 3+ stuff-filled rooms.
Amid the "What's that smell? Oh, that's the carpet. That's got to go!" and losing my old electric racecar track from the '70s, I began to think about the things in our present house. How were we going to go through it all? What are we going to do with it all when we move to a bigger house? I don't want to pay the huge expense of hiring someone to move 200+ boxes to a new house and then just throw most of it away. And I can't leave it behind if we sell or rent the place. Besides, there's usefull stuff down there!
So that's where 5 Boxes Every Weekend started. Not too many to be overwhelming... and not too few where it would take 20 years to go through.
If you're like us, we welcome you to join our journey and rid yourself of 5 Boxes Every Weekend and post your successes and emotions here. It's my assumption that the emotions are where we'll find the answers.
Sunday, July 12, 2009
We started bright and early today at 11 am. Cole was complaining on his baby mat in the dining room as the rest of the family headed down into the basement to choose our first five boxes.
It was overwhelming to see what we are up against.
Here are a few views of our basement.
Don't let it scare you.
There's a lot of stuff.
We decided to start in the lefthand corner of the basement where we think most of the boxes are our own stuff.
We chose our first five boxes swiftly and carried them up to the dining room for sorting fun.
And so the five boxes a weekend journey begins. Join Nick and me as we sort through our stuff and our "stuff" this week.
What will we find?
What will we discover?
What will we learn?
Join Nick and Sheila as they tackle five boxes a weekend.
Welcome to our humble home. It was built in 1929 by my great-grandfather. My grandfather, Thomas Bowe, and my great-aunt, Margaret Bowe, grew up in this house. After my great-grandparents passed away, my aunt, whom we called Sissy, continued to live here into her nineties.
Then my mother and stepfather lived here for years. My mother, Mary Bowe Koechig, passed away three years ago and my stepfather moved away. The house sat empty until we moved in two years ago come September.
When we moved in we inherited a houshold of stuff. It seems I got my packrat behaviors from my mother's side of the family. Unfortunately, my husband has the same hording gene.
Imagine what our house looked like when we moved in our stuff and mingled it with all the stuff that was already here!
We managed to Dumpster a big load of absolute junk when we first moved in, but that barely made a dent in the stuff level.
Now there's four of us here. Genny is five and Cole is seven months. And there's too much stuff to breathe.
So, that's where this blog comes in. We have pledged ourselves to clearing out five boxes a weekend from our basement. Nick estimates there's about 200 boxes of stuff down there. We are going to share our journey through too much stuff with you.
You'll share all the sorting excitement as we struggle through almost 100 years of stuff. We're sure to come up against all our issues as we sort and sift and decide what to keep, what to sell, and what to throw away!