Packing Up – I Thought I Downsized!!!

Back on the river…practicing my social skills. Two women coming toward me stop. One asked me if she knew me because I looked familiar. I gave her my name and she said, no, must be someone else. Before they moved on I asked her name. She gave it and I said that now we know each other. She found that funny. And of course, by now, we have both forgotten. But for me it was another big step to talk to someone.

Poor trees…reaching out, waving all their new leaves…it gets to be too much! The river is very high and more trees may just give in to the wet and topple in.

And then the things I couldn’t help bring back home. Goose feather and “Tennessee Toothpicks” that are really the centers of tulip poplar blooms.

They mow a path from my new place over to the soccer fields and gym I go to.

When I checked the house Thursday only this black pipe seemed new in the building process.

The builder says August 15 is a good date to move in…..but “Don’t hold me to it.”      I won’t.

After the inspection last week and what looks like a sure sale of the house, I started packing up more.

There was little to no sadness taking the things down and packing them in boxes. It is time to start again. Some pieces were very, very dusty! I will have to get someone, a tall someone, to come and climb a ladder to hand down the rest. This piece I found in the entry was pretty packed with dust. I took a damp paper towel to get a good look at it.

I bought a large gourd, drew on it, then covered the drawing with basswood inner bark that I had stripped to make cordage and baskets in the eighties. Then I burned in designs on the basswood strips. Next other dried plant fibers and cornhusks after making a clay face and coiled hat.

Finished off with coconut and clay beads from Africa that my irresistible importer tempted me with. All together, The Gourd Woman makes a nice rattly chatter when handled.

So she will come along with me as a reminder of those days when I loved the natural fibers of the basket making world.

There is a large carton, never unpacked, down in the storage room. It will go back north when the U Haul truck goes with all that the kids and Marla are taking home. This morning on our weekly call, they wanted to know what was in it. So I looked.

A frame Lee made fallen away from its painting and a watercolor copy someone, his mother or aunt did.

A painting of a barn I did in 1981. Wallpaper across the back kept the frame attached.

Crewel work I did when the kids were very young. I liked drawing with yarn back then….or they more likely are my mothers because she loved doing these on visits.

Puzzles, lincoln logs, leggos, clay blocks, and those sticks and wheels with holes (I forgot what they are called).

Patrick’s wood carving signed and dated on the back when he was twelve years old.

Another water color copy to make a pair and another pair of Godey girl prints, nicely framed and from Lee’s side of the family.

All of it goes north and between the three of them, it will be taken care of.

Why do we keep things that we really would not want. It must be that someone in the family made it. These things are the physical evidence of what they loved doing. Are we supposed to keep these unopened boxes forever? Drag them from house to house only to stuff them into basements and attics? No, they are not coming with me on this next trip. There is just enough space for the things I love looking at, touching, reading, caressing…..And later on my children will have to deal with every one of those things. Just not now.

Til later…