Things I Found in Boxes While Clearing Out the Basement

by Wendy Copley on January 29, 2011

For the past week or so, I have been working on cleaning out our basement (see Goal #22 in the sidebar on the right). There are lots and lots of boxes down there that we stowed away when we moved into this house five years ago and haven’t opened since. Most of what I’ve found has either gone to Goodwill, Freecycle or the trash can but I’ve also found some treasures that sentimentality won’t let me part with. Here are a few of my discoveries:

Pink sparkly D&D dice

Sparkly Pink D&D Dice

These were a gift from my college boyfriend. He bought them for me in the hopes that they would entice me to play Dungeons & Dragons with him and his buddies every few weeks. I did play a few times, but I’ve always found D&D to be kind of boring with all the long stretches of time where nothing really happens so that phase petered out pretty quickly. Still: they’re pink! And sparkly! How could I ever give these away?

Age: about 20 years old.

Fimo Face

Fimo Lady with Big Poofy Blonde Hair

I made this in my Fimo/Sculpey crafting stage right after I graduated from college. I was really into polymer clay for awhile there. Most of my efforts were focused on making millefiori canes which I used to make beads and picture frames. My crowning polymer clay achievement though was making a millefiori face cane. Dang, that was hard! I used most of that cane to make Santa ornaments for my family, but I made this lady with some of the leftovers.  It’s hard to tell size from the photo, but this is about 3 in. x 2 in.

Age: 16 years

Beloved jewelry box

Beloved Jewelry Box

This was a gift to me from my grandfather when I was very young. He died when I was two and this was on my dresser my entire life, starting before I can even remember. The writing on the top says “Clear Lake Iowa”. One of the hinges on the back is broken so I put it in storage to keep it from getting more damaged. When I found it in a box yesterday I realized how wrong I was to do that. This needs to be out where I can see it every day.

Age: 38 years

Lapel pins

Tangible Proof of my Goody Two Shoes-osity

These pins were inside the jewelry box. The one on left is for Quill and Scroll. I got that one for my years working on the yearbook in high school (I was the photo editor junior and senior years). The one on the right is for the National Honor Society — also from high school. The one in the middle is my favorite though — I got that for being a Safety Patrol Captain in elementary school. We had a student run crossing guard program where fifth and sixth graders would stand at the busier intersections around our school and help the younger kids cross the street safely. We wore orange belts with big badges on them and we took our duties very, very seriously. So not only was I was I a big safety dork — I was their Captain!

Age: 20-30 years

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  • oh em gee I was a patrol captain too!

    And I have a set of D&D dice too…but that’s because I actually play D&D every other Saturday.

  • Xpurg8d

    It’s touching that you have such wonderful sentimental things. It’s clear that you have a good idea about what should be saved — not for the monetary worth, but for the value each item has to you for the memories. Yes, the little wooden box needs to be out where you can see it every day. And there has to be some shelf of fun, funky things someplace where PINK sparkly D&D dice can be displayed. They are just so different and cool and will kids today even know what they are? The various badges should also be displayed prominently — they’re a biographical record of how you got to be who you are!

  • Xpurg8d

    P.S. That Fimo face is a masterpiece! Seriously, she’s really good. I love it.

  • Karen Lloyd

    Love the sparkly dice! My hubby saved all of his D&D dice in a fantastically ugly paisley drawstring bag. Our kids love playing with them, we keep all of our dice together in the bag instead of having a set for each game.

    Made pilgrimage to Ichiban Kan the other week. (Didn’t run into you there!!) Had a great time and brought home a bunch of japanese coloring books and eraser animals as party favors for my daughter’s third birthday party coming up. I love kawai stuff, really I’m buying it for me!

  • Karen Lloyd

    P.S. Games of Berkeley has amazing dice – hubby covets the steel ones….Um no dear, we need a new washing machine b/f we can buy you steel dice!

  • Diana

    oh my gosh- just had to chime in that i was also a patrol captain! i was SO proud. i remember the teachers picked the captain, and i was so shocked they picked me. thanks for bringing that memory back!

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