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What did you keep plus other comments on my day


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I read the book "Always Too Soon" and in it, she asks what "things" people kept of their parents. And I'm wondering, what did you guys keep of your loved ones?

I went to Mom's house today to wash a few things that won't fit in my washer. While there, I sorted through some stuff and took some stuff home. Mostly it looks like I ransacked the place! I did start piling up things for my brother to come and get. Man, that is hard to do. I turned off the cable, so I didn't have any background noise either. (But the neighbor's cat come over to visit--thanks Pumpkin.) I found a journal that she kept for a little over a week back in Sept 2005 right after she retired. Daddy was in the hospital then too. I'm still crying over that one.

I'm off work all week and I was so excited to have NOTHING that I had to do for the first time in years. But actually, it was just a sad, sad day. And there is no one for me to call that would understand. Except for Mom's sister, but I don't want to upset her--again.



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Oh Leslie, I know how hard that is. I'm so sorry you had to go through it. To reverse the question...what did you end up keeping?

I take Pumpkin's visit as a sign - Mom was watching over you...

With regard to your question...yes, my sisters and I kept some things. I have a bin of her clothing - things that I have her wearing in special pictures, a pair of capri pants she bought on our last shopping trip (she had to get bigger ones b/c she was so swollen - I don't think she ever got to wear them, they were so adorable on her), one of her little nighties, the Outer Banks shirt that was the last thing I saw her in before she left her house forever, things like that. I also kept her winter coat, which still has some of her hair in the hood and smells like her. I go to the closet sometimes and just inhale her smell...I know someday the scent will probably be gone... I also kept her Estee Lauder powder that she wore since I was little - the smell just transports me to the security and love of my childhood. I have her mother's ring, with all the kids birthstones.

Recently I was getting ready to make a huge batch of cookies. I did not have a bowl big enough and I called my dad to borrow the big yellow Pyrex bowl my mom always used. (Circa 1960's). He brought it over and when I went to make the cookies, I found myself hugging that bowl to my chest and crying...I realized in that moment what it represented. All the times Mom would let us help her make her amazing cookies, all the meals of Shepherd's Pie and goulash she baked in it...it was more "her" than anything I had. It represented happiness and love and security and warmth. I still haven't given it back.

I also have other random things that people that haven't lost someone would think are strange, but that I treasure...

Sending you hugs tonight..

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Because it is what she wanetd, we donated almost everything of Mom's to Catholic Charities. As 'luck' would have it, they were trying to outfit an apartment for a refugee family the day we called. We filled it! For the most part, we (my brothers and I) agreed that we had enough 'stuff' (Tvs, electronics, furniture, etc) and someone else actually needed it. Seeing them take away 'her chair' was tough, though.

I did, of course, keep some stuff. All her religious items, and most of her fun, inexpensive jewelry, quilts, lots of pictures. Things she had kept of my dad's. We were trying so hard to donate and move everything, I almost didn't keep her / my dad's yearbooks. I am so glad I did. I was worried about transfering piles of stuff that would just lay around, but my DH told me I should keep them. It makes me laugh to read the signatures, and I look in amazement at her fresh-faced high school self. What dreams she must have had. I'd like to think many of them came true.


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wow this is a tough one. It seems like I am keeping everything. We havent really "cleaned out" her things yet and are just now trying to plan some time with my sisters to do that. I dont know that I will be able to get rid of anything. So far I have the purse that she was carrying when she went into the hospital (with everything in it) a change purse that has $4.51 cents in it (that I will never spend) and when my sister and I were doing some basic cleaning for my dad we came across a recipe for cookies that was written in my moms handwriting that my sister was gonna throw away because it was only 1/2 of the recipe but I kept it cuz it was moms writing. We need todo it soon cuz my dad will be moving to a small apartment soon. My hubbys fear is that he will end up with a garage full of stuff. How do you all decide what to keep?

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At the moment I've "kept" a lot. I still have mom's house, and thus have kept the furniture, as it is harder to sell an empty house.

I just deleted a ton of what I just wrote. I just realized I am keeping a butt load of stuff...car, gardening stuff, rocking chair, photo albums, camera, angel statues...I am tron on some other stuff, don't know whether to keep or give away.

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I have to do it little by little. And since my brother doesn't live that close, I'm all alone. Friends from work have offered to help, but I don't see where they can do alot. Like you guys said, I'm trying NOT to keep it all. We hadn't even fully gone through Daddy's stuff. I cleaned out his room when I moved in so I could use it, and that was only 4 months after he died. But basically she had better "stuff" than I did, so I'm exchanging it so far and I'm trying to sell my stuff. Some days I just wander around in there and sniff things. Yesterday was really hard when I found a part of a scrapbook from high school and then that journal.

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Interesting question. And thinking about it made me realize how many things of both my parents I still have. But with time I did find that many things I couldn't part with when they died, I had no problem letting go of later.

I do still wear a couple of my mum's sweaters, and everytime someone comments on them I have to tell them they were my dead mother's, which I think makes most people a bit uncomfortable. I should work on that. :)

When Dad died Mum had to start using the bank account for the first time (Dad did all of that, so much so that he told my 2 sisters and I, never let a man do to you what I did to your mother :)). I think both my sisters and I have kept a check written by Mum in those first few weeks, usually for something like $1.29 and in the memo line where it says "FOR:" she writes, $1.29. ;) I guess no one explained to her the purpose of that line. But I still smile and cry a bit when I look at them.

I wear one of her winter coats, but that first winter (she died in September) I basically left it in my car because it smelled like her and my whole car did that whole summer. But the smell eventually faded and I really miss that smell.

I have lots of other stuff, but those seem to come to mind first.

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