So, they say “your kids don’t want your stuff” – that is, after you die and maybe whilst you’re alive as well. That is totally apparent from a general view. In my specific case, my daughters may be too busy to do much with the stuff and now one lives in Wisconsin (I’m in Indiana), which complicates the dissemination. While there may be a few things I want to pass along, do they want them? I’ll have to check. If not, maybe a museum or someone who seems to like this or that. The other stuff? Start to find a home now, maybe a landfill or a recycling center or a charity. Beauty and value is in the eye of the beholder.
But, there are some personal effects that seem tragic if just pitched out. They’re important to me, but maybe no one else. There’s the picture taken of my younger daughter in a tree in the backyard on Kensington in Lansing, Michigan, when she was a youngster, maybe four or five. The frame could be donated, but the picture maybe no one else cares about. Oh, and a picture of me with my older daughter at School Section Lake near Mecosta, Michigan – the frame, again, is maybe a nice one to someone, but no one may want my part of the picture. They could cut me out, somehow, or put someone else’s face on my body – which raises the question of who wants their face on THAT body? There are many other pictures of my two daughters around the cabin.
There’s also my grandpa’s diploma from eighth grade. The document is bigger than my IU diploma. I like it. And there’s grandma’s picture.
There’s the piece of the IU basketball court from 1976-1995. Maybe IU would take it back and re-sell it?
There’s the framed picture commemorating my time on the local board of Ele’s Place in Lansing and the picture of my life underwriting team at JNL during the company’s days of selling life insurance. The college at Oxford where I stayed in 1998 for a week is a cool drawing, but, likely, not valuable to anyone else. There’s the picture of me on a pony – very faded, but still recognizable. The picture was taken under the Box Elder tree next to the front porch of my grandma’s house where I was raised. There’s the cool “Music” wooden sculpture signed by The Accidentals – maybe Jack would want that. And there are a bunch of signed CDs, maybe the most famous signee being Toby Keith –a music lover might want those? There’s the signed basketball from Sean Elliott of the San Antonio Spurs, the first player to return to the league after a kidney transplant, and it comes with a presentation case.
But, there’s also “stuff.” Glass paperweights, other glass art, the inscribed glass art commemorating my year as AHOU President, some very old books (maybe IU’s Lilly Library?), a nice lamp from the 1920s acquired in an estate sale in Grand Haven, and other stuff. There’s a neat, old table – kind of like a sofa table, perhaps. My grandma’s Singer and another sewing machine cabinet (a White) are in the cabin. There’s art – original pieces, numbered pieces, and reproductions. There’s the John Lennon “Imagine” piece with a portion of the door from the studio where the song was recorded. There are a bunch of coffee cups from various entities and plain ones – the idea was given me to break them up and make a mosaic piece for the garden. That’s a great idea, but maybe it just becomes a permanent fixture in the garden to leave with the property. And the property? New windows, a new car, and a new garage! Maybe IU would want it, probably to sell. A bunch of old coins are in a small lock box. Clothes can go to a charity as can pots, pans, dishes, odds and ends of furniture, all sorts of novelties and trinkets, CDs, vinyl records, etc. Well, maybe the vinyl records, dating from the late 1960s through maybe the 1980s with a few from this century, can go to a music lover. Maybe the CDs go to another music lover. And a lot of other stuff around the cabin and garage will need attention.
The girls, Izzy and Maya... The person they know as “Mom” has agreed to take them in the event they survive me. It’s been said that if Izzy goes, then they may just have to put me down. Now, though, they’re both special and either would be seriously missed. There are pictures, two sets of drawings (one set framed), and personal artifacts from the dogs. Maya’s “bedroom” (her crate or kennel) that she insisted on sleeping in for almost eight years is here, too.
Anyway, the kids don’t want your stuff. Deal with it. My will can do most of the dirty work.