I don't own that many things, but it seems like I don't use most of what I do own.
Is it possible to have just one spoon and one bowl? What about when company comes, or if the favorite is lost or broken? What is the happy medium between what we use and what we have?
- Here I have all these shiny spoons, including my grandma's beautiful silver from the 1930s, but I only ever use the one on the left. If it's dirty, I'll wash it. I don't even know where this spoon came from, but it's my favorite.
- It's the same with bowls: I eat every bowl-appropriate meal out of this graceful Japanese porcelain bowl I bought at my friends Stuart & Nicole's garage sale last year, while the Ikea dishes hang about.
- My favorite wooden spoon is nice and short so it won't get knocked off the stove in my tiny kitchen, but I also have two right-handed spoons, despite the fact that I'm left-handed! Get them out of here. The one with the burnt handle was a gift, so it stays.
- I stand by all six of my pairs of scissors, however. The large black pair is for cooking and floral arranging, the small black pair is for crafts, the grey is for fabric, the red is for when I teach myself to cut left-handed someday, the crappy blue pair is used to cut anything that will dull the good scissors, and the tiny vintage scissors from my mom are for embroidery.
So what percentage of your possessions do you use regularly? Why do we hold on to the extras? I think survival instinct definitely plays a part. For example, here in San Francisco I never need more than a down comforter, only turn on the heater a handful of times each year, and almost always sleep with the window open. The Midwesterner in me, however, cannot get rid of the extra blankets. You need
blankets, just in case.
Images: Tess Wilson