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Hidden Treasures
Thursday, December 15th, 2011

I swear my life would make the best reality show. A house full of eccentric elderly people. Pets who act like children. A Red-Headed Hellion with children who would frighten The Children of the Corn. I’m the one in the middle of all the chaos.

I’ve been trying to simplify my life. However, the older of the two little girls has some learning issues. I’m going to be helping with homeschool. I already babysit quite a bit, rush to town to help with emotional bedtimes, etc. For a year, my daughter lived in a trailer she’d bought and put in the pasture beside our house. It was to be a temporary housing solution. We hoped the house across the road would come available and be reasonable priced, but when that didn’t happen fast enough, I found a very nice, cute little house that needed a few renovations in town, five minutes away. Problem solved, or so I thought.

A week after her family moved in, the house across the road was offered to us, along with 8 acres of land. No more driving to get where I’m needed. No more worrying about the hellions escaping the front door and running into the street (the two-year old moves step stools to reach the upper latch of the front door). But the house was built in the early 80’s and was occupied by an old lady who lived alone until her family moved her into a nursing home. We pretty much have to plan to gut the bathrooms and redo them, replace the roof, the carpet, the tile…

So, I’m buying that house, along with everything still inside it, selling the other, and this weekend we are holding a massive garage sale to get rid of all the items the woman horded in her house for thirty years.

We have found some treasures. I scarfed up two lovely old blue carnival glass bowls. My daughter found a Beatle record in mint condition. My mother, aunt and grandmother swarmed the crocheted afghans and a multitude of coats and jackets the woman barely wore.

Yesterday, my grinning son-in-law walked in to present me with a Teen Wolf doll whose eyes glow red and growls when you flip the switch.

The sale starts early tomorrow morning, so be thinking about me, setting up tables to pile with clothing, toys, dishes, crocheted toilet tissue covers, a dozen bibles, statues with Jesus standing at the bottom of the sea beside a conch shell, dressers crammed with linens, picture frames with photos of smiling people who are no longer living and whose relatives didn’t care enough to save.

My daughter has a box for the photos she’s sure some long-lost grandchild might someday return to find. She’ll keep it along with the dead husband’s Mason uniform and her Mason wife’s pin. Maybe when the old woman finally passes, she’ll return and be happy about the fact we saved something she treasured. While we renovate, we’ll respect.

But she’s not getting the Teen Wolf doll back.

18 comments to “Hidden Treasures”

  1. Jeri Hughes
    · December 15th, 2011 at 12:06 pm · Link

    I wouldn’t give it back, either; that’s a keeper. 🙂

  2. Delilah
    · December 15th, 2011 at 12:10 pm · Link

    It looks so cute standing beside my James Brown singing doll.

  3. Calisa Rhose
    · December 15th, 2011 at 12:37 pm · Link

    What wonderful treasures! I’d hang on to the teen wolf doll, too! Have a great sale! 🙄

  4. Lisa J
    · December 15th, 2011 at 12:39 pm · Link

    Oh man, I would not only not return it, I would hide it from her so she can’t take it back.

  5. Myla Jackson
    · December 15th, 2011 at 12:43 pm · Link

    What a great find! Wish I could be there before all the “good stuff” is gone. But I’ll be there to help around noon.Can’t wait to see all my crazy relatives in South Arkansas!

  6. Hales
    · December 15th, 2011 at 1:32 pm · Link

    How cool! OMG I didn’t know you lived in Chaos too!!!

    Yours is on a whole other level than mine lol. The old woman who resided in the house we bought horded to. It took her sons a month to clear out all the different things she collected. In my childhood neighbor hood. Hazel was moved to a nursing home. I spent many a days on her porch eating cookies and talking to her when I was ten. It was really sad as an adult to see her have to choose what to take from a lifetime of collecting. She too had some great things.
    I’d have died laughing seeing the Teen Wolf doll. 😛 Good luck on the gutting and renovations. I can’t imagine you’d be taking a break from writing while doing everything.

  7. Shadow
    · December 15th, 2011 at 1:52 pm · Link

    Wow! You are one busy lady! Hope you have fun at the garage sale! The cool! Its so sweet of your daughter to save the uniform and photos for the family. Hopefully, someone will want them and come claim them. 😉

  8. Shawna
    · December 15th, 2011 at 2:11 pm · Link

    I wish I had old homes that came up for sale in my neighborhood so I could go look for treasures. Unfortunately, in NYC, you have to either a) travel all over the place and most of us don’t drive so its pain, b) know someone or c) read the obits. So, I’m living vicariously through you. Post photos of some of the more interesting items on facebook. I would love to see what 30 years of hoarding looks like.

  9. Kala Goriup
    · December 15th, 2011 at 4:18 pm · Link

    I think that you have proven that no matter how bad we think we have it, there is always someone out there with a nuttier story.

    I thought my house was nuts. Two cats, one dog, one college freshman (who I thought moved out, but keeps coming back.) and newly minted teenager. One cat thinks he is the world’s biggest people slut, the other cat is a surly bad tempered black tom. The dog, well he just tries to ignore everyone else. My husband thinks that if it creaks, he should fix it– so my house becomes a maze of unfinished projects. My youngest is determined to prove she is from another planet and my oldest has the worst case of clingy ever! I never thought I would actually consider pushing one of my kids out of the nest, but it is sorely tempting! My life would be tolerable if I could just convince my slutty cat to stop stealing my popcorn.
    Kay 😕

  10. red headed hellion
    · December 15th, 2011 at 5:44 pm · Link

    GARAGE SALE TOMORROW!!! Tell gma to have coffee! 🙂 I love you! AND YES, OUR FAMILY IS CRAZY!

  11. red headed hellion
    · December 15th, 2011 at 5:45 pm · Link

    Oh, and the teen wolf thing was def my hubbys idea….i wanted to keep it! lol

  12. Diane
    · December 15th, 2011 at 8:06 pm · Link

    Good luck with the renos and the garage sale. It’s a lot of work to start before Xmas.

  13. tammy ramey
    · December 15th, 2011 at 11:12 pm · Link

    i wish lived closer, i would be there with bells on. i love and live for garage sales. i collect vintage costume jewelery and teacups/teapots/tea sets and a ton of other collectible things that only i find neat. my family keeps telling me to stop as we are running out of places to put them. 😀

  14. Delilah
    · December 16th, 2011 at 7:10 am · Link

    Tammy, sounds like you and I are sisters!

  15. Betty Hamilton
    · December 16th, 2011 at 9:16 am · Link

    I love that teen wolf doll! What a find!

  16. Linda Womack
    · December 16th, 2011 at 9:26 am · Link

    I LOVE Garage sales and wish I lived close… Have fun!


  17. Sasha White
    · December 17th, 2011 at 11:33 pm · Link

    I know I missed this, but I hope the sale went well, and that the new house, once you get into it, helps settle your life down a bit.

    PS: I hope you kept the Teen Wolf Doll. it’s so you. *g*

  18. Delilah
    · December 19th, 2011 at 12:40 am · Link

    Sasha! I missed your comment! Did I tell you I love your new pic! You look amazing!

Comments are closed.