A Collector’s Eye

When I notice the large and small wonders of my world, I’m happier and more appreciative, so I try to enhance my life each day by being mindful of my surroundings. Over forty years ago, paying attention led me to a rewarding hobby.

Osterszene mit Eiern aus Stein

I stood before a stall in a busy market outside Rome and picked up an egg made of marble. It rolled into my palm, a perfect fit: cool to the touch and smooth with a satisfying heft. Irregular splotches of ashy hue floated on its deep gray surface like clouds preparing the way for thunder in a dark sky. I liked it. I bought it.

Back home, the egg sat on a sunny windowsill where it retained its slick coolness. I decided to look for more eggs to group with it. With that thought, I became a collector.

I had started collections in the past. I once scrawled the years from 1930 to the current 1950 on a piece of construction paper, planning to fill the sheet by taping pennies below the years in which they were minted. After several weeks, I decided a coin collection was a waste of good money and used the three pennies I’d accumulated to buy wax candy lips to wear home on the bus.

My next idea was to eat, list, and rate 100 different ice cream flavors before I turned twelve. Like the pennies, this collection never had a chance. The most exotic flavor available to a child living on a remote farm was Neapolitan with its blocks of chocolate, strawberry, and vanilla. I cheated by listing all three flavors separately, but my collection grew as slowly as my manners. I soon gave up.diamond egg

Then I purchased the marble egg in Italy. Over the years, my collection expanded and diversified: eggcups, egg scissors, wooden eggs and crystal eggs; natural eggs that were gilded, enameled, painted, crocheted, and feathered. A thunder egg a student gave me; an ostrich egg purchased at a garage sale; a glass egg filled with Mt. St. Helen’s ash. easter eggs

I haven’t added to my collection in years; but often when I wander by the china closet where it’s displayed — and seldom dusted — I study the eggs and enjoy the memories and unique details attached to each.

I then reach out. And it is usually the gray-hued egg from Italy that rests in my palm. I still like how it feels.

29 thoughts on “A Collector’s Eye

  1. What a lovely post Janet. It’s amazing what catches our fancy. It’s as if we humans have to collect, well, something. I have collections inherited from family, but my own personal collection is pencils. (Surprise!) It started when we went to Paris the first time. While at the Louvre I noticed they were selling pencils and wa la, a collection was born. Now, when we travel, I plunk down my dollar and buy a pencil. They are stored in a cup by my drafting board. The beauty of this collection is that it is extremely low maintenance , cheap, and easy to take home. When I look at a pencil it takes me back to where the pencil came from. But the first one is still my favorite from the Louvre!

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  2. Good evening Janet- what a delight to get to know your joys and thunkets- I collect stamps, U.S.A., Canada, and my beloved South Pacific like your eggs, they just began unbidden. I take them out when it snows.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I was quite certain you’d have a collection, Sheila. I like the picture of you taking them out when it snows. Sounds so peaceful. And you don’t have to dust stamps, which is the only fly in the ointment of my eggs, and one I manage to avoid most of the time.

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  3. “One does not have to explain one’s passions”.

    I sought white ceramic swans and vintage cobalt blue medicine bottles while you, Janet, were often next to me buying a fascinating egg. What fun we had scanning tables piled high at flea markets, garage sales, and antique stores, then excitedly spotting the prize. Only a collector can appreciate that moment.

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  4. Janet, I loved the picture you painted of the succession of your collections. I love the eggs. I have just a few. I have other collections too, one is of swap cards that was started as a child. Strangely they have a hold over me, and I can’t part with them yet. Each one has a fascination, reminding me of a time gone by or a person. Things do have an aura. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I like this post on collections; it got me thinking about my own and varied collections over the years—the key chain collection, the refrigerator magnet collection, the T-shirt collection. Actually I still have all those collections somewhere (over 500 T-shirts in boxes!) but don’t look at them much anymore.
    One collection I do appreciate is my Christmas Music Box collection. Every year when I get the intricate music boxes out to display in a curio cabinet I reflect, as you do, on the memories associated with each one while listening to the holiday songs they play.

    Your egg collection is beautiful! Are those Ukrainian Easter eggs in the last picture?


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