Downsizing: The Nifty Thrifty



My daughters have let me know they don’t want to inherit  many of my collections.

“Someone else can enjoy them,” Kath suggested.

Let a stranger adopt my treasures? My buttons? My bookmarks? My dolls? My hat boxes?

I pondered as the words lingered. In time, I realized Kath is right.

The folks who eventually own my collections don’t have to be relatives. After all, those of us who love old things are part of the Old Things Family.

 I picked up the items you see at the Nifty Thrifty, the resale shop at Edenwald, my mom’s retirement community.

Residents bring in items they’re finished with, and families send items when a loved one dies.

The Nifty Thrifty is staffed by volunteers, and the money goes to Edenwald’s scholarship fund for the kids who work in the dining hall.

Every visit to Mom includes a jaunt to the Nifty Thrifty.

Note the sewing items for my sewing collection and pins for my jackets.

A nifty system!

What about you?

Do your kids want your collections?

If not, are you happy letting others take ownership?

18 responses »

  1. No, my kids don’t want my collections. They have collections of their own. I’m thinking of having a “grab” with my women’s group (Sisters on the Fly) and with my book group and other women’s groups I belong to. My great aunt had a “grab” when she was in her 80s and I was impressed with how it went. And it goes something like this. You put all of the things you want to “go” out on a table or maybe you want to get rid of everything in a particular room. The “grabbers” draw straws to see who goes first, second, third, etc. Then, in turn, they take what they really want until it is all gone. Easier than a garage sale but you don’t get any money…just the knowing that your precious things are enjoyed by folks who want them.

    • Gosh what a wonderful idea. Never thought of that. I have a feeling so many people our age don’t want more stuff, but it would be neat to invite younger people I know who appreciate old things.

  2. I LOVE that there is an Old Things Family! And I am a proud member. Even though my children love some old things they don’t have the room to take all of mine (guess I got a little carried away with collecting!). Nor should they! But, oh, it will be hard to part with the left overs. Still, I like Kath’s idea. Maybe there are some other Old Things Family members who will ooh and aah over my 1920s toasters? : )

  3. Years ago people took all the hand me downs they could get but most kids today want to build their own personal clutter. My daughter is an exception. Her kids slept in the crib that had been in the family 60 years and housed countless babies. The table and chairs on her back porch belonged to her grandmother. Her kids love the toys and books in my attic and her daughter wore the baby outfits I saved. It is refreshing to see items reused and refurbished.

    • Ah. So sweet of your daughter. Kath came to visit with Mazen this weekend and posted how cool it was for Maze to play with vintage toys from the eighties. Love it that she’s pleased I saved so much. And instead of trying to unload them like so many of my things, the toys are staying at Grammie’s! Got to have fun stuff when he visits.

  4. I already know, she’s keeping the pictures. And maybe my French cupboard. My 90 yr old MIL has kept everything of hers and her two older sisters. It will be a monumental task when she decides to downsize, if ever

    • It may sound silly, but I never truly thought of it that way until Kath commented. I was raised so much, “This is family” and “This should be saved” that I never thought otherwise.

  5. Nope. My daughter let me know she wasn’t interested in keeping my “crap” one day when I went to her house (unexpected, I guess) and there were boxes sitting in the hallway waiting to be hauled to Goodwill. I started “pawing” through the stuff, and she was not happy. She said something like; “This is why we try to declutter when you’re not around.” Apparently my hanging onto stuff was not something she wanted to inherit. So, aside from a few specific items of sentimental value, my crap will go elsewhere.

    • Yep. The world seems to manage though. I still worry about my old dolls. Would love to know if they exist in the world somewhere. Guess it’s time I put it to rest (or should i say put them to rest.)

      • I think it’s wonderful that you have these precious collections. Why worry now about what to do with them “as time goes by”? Enjoy them, enjoy them now for yourself!! We can never predict what our children will decide about things a few years down the line. . .but, should treasured things not end up in our family’s possession, I do love your reference to the “Old Things Family.”

      • Yes, you are right. But I have enough stuff that I’ll need to think about thinning before we downsize to a new house but the best treasures can remain.

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