Terry has mellowed. Maybe he's seen the light. Or thrown up his hands. He used to raise his eyebrows at my squandering of his paycheck. Once, he wrote "Trash" across the cover of a People magazine I'd spontaneously thrown into my grocery basket. No more does he object. And, no more would I waste money on People magazine, because I'm too old to recognize, nor be interested in, the People in it. I've moved on to bigger and better.
Last week, Terry walked in the house carrying seven small boxes that had come in the mail and only smiled indulgently as he placed them next to me. Ebay has gotten the best of me. When I cringed at my wastefulness, he said, "I'm glad it makes you happy."
I made a shadowbox of family and ebay treasures.: my infant dress, Marat CDV card, Count Axel Fersen miniature, three French Revolution uniform buttons (one with the word "Republique" misspelled as "Republiuqe"), silver shoe hook, my mother's handkerchief that I carried at her funeral, my mother's mother's childhood charm bracelet, drawing of a 18th century French aristocratic couple that hung in my father's mother's bedroom, a magnet that Micah brought me from Paris that shows the location of L'église de la Madeleine on the metro map, my mother's antique broach
I made this second round pick of my parents' corner cupboard in order to store my collection. Woefully inadequate space. The list of possessions that I consider priceless reads like a hoarder's inventory. Assignats, gifts from my husband and children, arrowheads and pottery from land surrounding Terry's family's New Mexico cabin, Dad's POW cigarettes, National Convention decrees, 250 year old medals commemorating events like the birth of Louis-Joseph, used tissues from my mother's bathrobe pocket, 2" thick Sotheby's JFK estate sale catalog, David's and Micah's childhood books, toys, Hannas and cloth diapers... Thousands of treasures in the eye of this beholder.
A few things I happen to have pictures of...
Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette medal
~ copy of Michael's Cardinal Maury family seal - he was a member of the National Convention and maybe of my family ~
family letters, pictures and inkwell
Cross-stitched gift from my maternal grandmother
French letter with French Revolutionary calendar date and seal
French Revolution uniform button
~ Limoges box commemorating the French Revolution ~
~ original press photo of my dad, in a bathrobe, examining products in the Navy Exchange during the POWs first layover in the Philippines after being released in 1973 ~
8x10 newspaper photo of my dad demonstrating Vietnamese rope trick torture
~ 1846 Sèvres Tuileries pattern china with Louis-Philippe cipher to add to the collection Terry started on our anniversary a few years ago. He didn't realize he was starting a collection. He thought he was buying six place settings for $400 at a local antique mall. (A steal, btw. There's one plate on ebay for $375 right now. ) There's a funny/sad story to go along with that china. ~
seals for letters infrequently written
1794 original Maine newspaper with long front page article describing Robespierre's 9 Thermidor overthrow and death
~ supposedly real aristocratic seal collection ~
~old Life magazine with Madame Du Barry on cover and article about Enlightenment that claims, among other things, that some Comtesse (I've forgotten which, but it was a name I recognized) kept a cadaver in her carriage, so she could dissect as she travelled from ball to ball, so carried away was she with the enlightened advances in science ~
~ Edition of Life magazine featuring Paul Galanti on the cover - in this Vietnamese propaganda shot, he shot the finger, but Life, considering it too risqué, airbrushed his fingers out ~
A sampling of material objects for which I'm grateful on this day that happens to be Thanksgiving. I'd be cooking or celebrating except Micah is sick in bed and David is in Austin and we've postponed the holiday.
I'm thankful for all the good in my life, material and non.