Sometimes we lose a treasured item. Sometimes the lost item is found in a relatively short period of time. Then there are those items that suddenly show up after a long, long, time.
I’m talking years here. And the sad part is, the item usually is found in a place we never would have looked for it.
This happened to me not too long ago. It made me realize that when we have so much stuff that is stored and rarely, if ever used, we create some crazy hiding places for things. These are not logical places to put the items. Therefore they are lost until we look in that particular place, usually while looking for something else. And how many years will that take?
A Little Background Info
What I lost, or misplaced as it happen to be, was one place setting of red handled silverware. A fork, knife, and spoon. It’s not something of monetary value but the sentimental value is priceless.
Growing up we kept a Kosher home. That was the Jewish laws of not eating meat and dairy products at the same meal. We also kept separate sets of dishes for this purpose. During Passover we had two entirely different sets of dishes, silverware, etc. for the full week of the holiday. That’s where the red handled silverware comes in.
After my father passed away, my mother stopped keeping the separate dishes for Passover. She had already stopped keeping Kosher a few years before that. She asked my sisters and me if we wanted any of the Passover dishes or cookware before she got rid of it. I took one place setting each of the silverware and green dishes. Every year I would bring them out at Passover to eat my fried matzo. This was my special moment that transported me back to a time where the holiday food and family had so many happy memories.
I kept this tradition up until two years ago. That’s when the silverware went missing. I looked all over for that fork, knife, and spoon. Every kitchen drawer and cabinet was searched, twice and sometimes three times. All the boxes in the storage room were searched, especially the ones I store holiday dishes and decorations in. I even looked in the Halloween box!
Not a sign of them.
The first year they went missing I looked everywhere I could think of. The second year they were missing I looked in all the same places again plus a few other places. Still no sign of them. Anytime I looked for something in a box, drawer, or closet throughout the year, the red handled silverware set was on my mind. I didn’t give up hope but reality told me that most likely they were accidentally thrown away or given away in a box for charity.
New Decluttering Mindset
In January of 2018 I decided to start downsizing all my belongings. My husband planned to retire in about a year from that date. Our plans were to move to the West coast to be closer to a beach and one of our sons. We knew it would be a much smaller home so I had a lot to get rid of.
I swore I would not have another garage sale but last summer my next door neighbor said she was planning one for mid September. I guess I couldn’t resist! A garage sale is a good tool to help let go of things especially if you think you can get some money for them.
With the upcoming sale I went through my house with a little urgency and a new attitude. If something wasn’t used in the past year (or longer) it was time to let it go!
In my basement storage room were some pots and cookware that hadn’t been used in years. Some were from my mother’s house when we sold it after she moved to a nursing home. I had every intention of using these items but never did. They just don’t fit my style of cooking anymore.
My mother passed away four years ago. It was time to cut the emotional ties to these unused items.
So I started pulling pots and pans off the shelves to get them ready for the garage sale. I promised myself that any unsold items would go to Goodwill that same weekend.
On the top shelf of the storage room was a brown ceramic bean pot. At least that is what I call it. I can’t remember when I last used it.
So I got on the step stool to pull the pot off the shelf. It was grimy with caked on dirt. I knew I hadn’t use the pot for several years and that was the proof. When I pulled it down I heard something rattle inside. I was totally surprised when I lifted the lid to see what was making that noise.
There was the long lost place setting of red handled silverware!
I have no memory of putting them in there. So obviously my brain was not thinking logically at the time I put the silverware inside the bean pot.
The silverware now has a permanent spot in my kitchen drawer. Why wait for Passover to go down memory lane. I make fried matzo year round. I will enjoy eating it with the red handled silverware on the green glass plate as it transports me to those happy childhood memories. Now that is a real treasure!
Every day life gives us lessons to learn if we only pay attention. What I learned was when I don’t put something away where it belongs it might end up in a place that makes no logical sense.
Another lesson I learned is to not store items away for so long that I don’t even know what I have. I need to go through all stored items periodically. Of course, if I have less to begin with it won’t be such a big job to do on a regular basis.
What treasures have you lost then found in unexpected places? Let me know your stories in the comment section.