I’m not a “stuff” person. I prize good character and creativity and don’t judge people’s value based on their cash value. There are some material things I do prize, although they probably are not worth a lot of money. I want to talk about these little treasures this week,
Most of my treasures were owned once by someone I know, without this relationship the item would not be worth much to me. I think my treasures prove how items which are present during shared experiences can draw us together on an emotional level.
I want to understand the weather. I think my grandparents on the Zavoral side did too. They had a weather station that I remember seeing at their house on South Saint Paul Avenue. I can see myself looking at the weather station when I was a little boy. I remember wondering how the mechanism worked. The weather station sat next to an ash tray shaped like a fish. Both of those items now sit at our house, the weather station makes sense however the ash tray is a mystery as I don’t even smoke. I guess the ash tray just takes me back to the mid-seventies and makes me feel good. I use the weather station in tandem with a modern, electrical version.
My grandfather on the Nelson side built his own log barn. The barn sat at their old farm southwest of Thief River Falls until it was torn down a few years ago. The current owner allowed me to cut a few logs out of the barn prior to demolition. I still these same logs which my grandfather had used to create a barn for their animals. The logs sit dry and clean in the shop and I just like to look at them. They have no real worth however to me they are simple treasures that make my eyes feel good each time I look at them.
The front of our house has a deck. On the deck, Lisa and I have attached little mementos that we have found here on the farm. The old fire number, a horseshoe, a sign that says “C.O. Lindquist” that must have been in a fire at some time. The porch has hay trolleys at every angle of our porch. I have hay trolleys from many different places however there are 3 from barns within our family that I truly treasure above others. Last week I purchased one of these trolleys from a barn that was torn down. It was the first farm my parents every lived on and it was something I felt I must have. I was also able to purchase the old cupola from the barn and it is sitting in the shop right now, as I prepare to use it in a traditional way.
It gives me great satisfaction to have these little things. I feel like gathering them is some sort of adventure where I go from place to place, gathering little trophies of my memories. Maybe more than possessions, I am gathering little moments from time that deserve the respect of simple recognition. It feels like time well spent, to me.