For whatever reason, Mom had subscriptions to 17 different magazines (at least those are the ones I counted) and she hated to part with any of the issues. After reading them, she’d pack them into plastic grocery bags and store them in her upstairs (so she could send them home with me after I’d visited her). I did take some to doctor’s offices and searched through others to see if there were any articles or recipes I wanted. The remainder went into the recycle bin. At one point in time, I cancelled all but a couple of them, at her request, but within a few months she was back to having 17 subscriptions again. She used to say she just loved receiving things in the mail. The reality is that magazine companies prey on people who cannot recall what magazines they receive or whether they’ve renewed or not so people (especially the elderly) may end up having way too many and some subscriptions go on for years. One of Mom’s magazines was paid up until 2016. We used to laugh when Mom would tell us, “You girls will sure have a mess to deal with when I’m gone”, but we’re no longer laughing. We’re still asking ourselves why Mom wasn’t more diligent in getting rid of unused things. She had many years in which she was healthier and could have been clearing out closets and drawers, but apparently she couldn’t deal with it all, or maybe didn’t want to. She was raised in the depression era, and that plays a part as well. So, yes, we do indeed have a mess but we’re making progress.
The sad thing about all of this, aside from our mother’s passing, is we have so much to do that we’ve had very little time to grieve for Mom or for the fact we’ll never again be able to gather at our family home once the house has been sold. That will seem odd after all these years. Our family moved there in 1957. The house was (is) small – with a master bedroom for Mom and Dad, a small bedroom for my brother on the first floor, and the upstairs (called a dormer in those days) for us girls. We had one bathroom and no air conditioning, yet, we felt grateful to have a roof over our heads. The house has a full basement and we used to like to play downstairs on hot days since it was so much cooler down there.
My sisters and I are learning valuable lessons as we clear out Mom’s house. We don’t want our offspring to “…have a mess to deal with…” so we’re being more mindful of what we’re adding to our own homes and vowing to (eventually) let go of things we no longer use or need. I hope we’ll remember that as time goes by.
MOM'S LIVING ROOM AS IT LOOKS TODAY - WE LOVED THE CLOSET DOOR SINCE THE WOOD PATTERN LOOKS JUST LIKE A HORSE HEAD
LIVING ROOM AND FRONT WINDOW
KITCHEN WINDOWN OVERLOOKS THE BACKYARD
OTHER SIDE OF LIVING ROOM
DINING AREA OF KITCHEN
MY SISTER AND I SLEPT HERE - WE HAD TWIN BEDS
THIS WAS MY SISTER'S SIDE OF THE ROOM
OUR YOUNGEST SISTER SLEPT TO THE LEFT OF STAIRWELL
OUR LITTLE FAMILY HOME - FOR SALE