Cedar Chests, China & Crystal

Sheri here –

Do you remember your hope chest?

When I was in high school, a cedar hope chest was all the rage. I remember, the local Lane furniture distributor would send out a postcard to all the high school senior girls as a reminder to go and get their mini hope chest. I still have mine filled with all kinds of little keepsakes.

I had always longed for the larger full sized hope chest though, built with cedar wood to perfectly preserve the items. It was supposed to be the place you stored all things for that perfect married life relationship; all the essentials a young lady needed to start her first home like linens and fine china. These were the things sold as the dream to your happy future– the perfect way to start your new life.

My first home was a tiny apartment, where I lived for awhile as I worked my way through college. I had pieced together a few things for that one room apartment, complete with an even tinier kitchen, and a Murphy bed. I can still remember it. 

In fact, I drove by it the other day on my way home from getting my covid vaccination at Dodger Stadium. That old apartment building built in the 1920s is still there. But, I digress.

I didn’t get married for the first time until I was 28. By that time, I had an established household. Yet, there was that lingering dream of that cedar hope chest. My head was still filled with the dreams of the things that I thought every new bride needed to have. I didn’t have those linens, crystal and fine china. I thought maybe it wasn’t meant to be.

Give Yourself Your Dreams

In fact, I didn’t get that crystal and china I had dreamed of until after I got divorced over a decade later– I gave that dream to myself. I gave it to myself because I felt that dream that I’d had for so long needed to be achieved. You can give yourself your own dreams – you don’t need a special occasion or someone else to fulfill your heart’s desire!

Accomplishing your goals is liberating when you free yourself from the expectations of others. Frustration is the gap between what people expect from you and who you are.

It’s ironic to think back to how those items were originally meant to be purchased with the anticipation of marriage and in the end, it was after my marriage ended that I give that gift to myself!

Know When to Let Go

The sad part is that since I’ve purchased the crystal and china, a complete place setting for twelve, I’ve used it less than a dozen times. Today, it sits inside the china closet taking up space, collecting dust. Now I’m looking at downsizing and thinking it’s time to let it go. 

There’s no one I know of to pass it on to. China and crystal has become a dated tradition.

In my last blog, I talked about letting go of things that you don’t draw joy from anymore – you can read it here

How do you let go of a dream that never happened? Something you wanted and worked toward for so long. Do you give up and scold yourself for being silly? Do you turn your back and walk away with sadness and despair, convinced you’ll never be happy? 

All of those are possibilities, but maybe a better way is to give yourself some time to process – to say goodbye and move on. Accept the present as it is and to go on to build a bigger, better dream more relevant for today. Just saying…

Leave a comment below and share how you handle those old unfulfilled dreams. 

Maybe you are wrestling with an unfulfilled dream and need a sounding board – give me a call and I can help talk you through it. Use this link and book a call.

Dream and revising our dreams are part of life – part of reinventing ourselves.  Sometimes it is easier to reinvent ourselves than at other times.  If you are looking some insight or some suggestions, feel free to reach out and let’s talk.  Book a call here.

Til the next time…. ciao,


I Gave Away My Wedding Dress

I Gave Away My Wedding Dress

Sheri here –

How easily do you let go of things? For me letting go is extremely difficult. (Most everything I have let go of still has my claw marks on it!) But letting go is part of life and knowing when to is key.

As part of my 2021 vision, I wanted to start fresh by decluttering, organizing and upgrading my home. What I did not expect is the universe to deliver parts of my vision with a sprained arm and a complicated water leak! But from this I’ve learned that almost anything can turn into a blessing!

These unforeseen challenges pushed me to get rid of things that I no longer needed and to ask for help– neither of which is easy for me. In order for the water leak to be repaired I had to clean out some things and organize. Who knew one water leak could wreak such havoc?!

Find a Balance Between What Was & What Is 

During this, I discovered there really is a process to letting go. It starts with willingness, ends with goodbye and is filled with many emotional steps in between. I had to acknowledge that I was done with whatever I was letting go of and that I’ve derived all the value and joy I was going to get. Marie Kondo would approve as she is a firm believer that when the joy is gone, it’s time to let the thing go!

But was all of the joy gone? Well, some items really were just things to store and collect dust and no longer held importance to me. But some things were more than that– things I’ve held onto for a long time, spent significant money on and created memories with.

I discovered that I had to let go emotionally and mentally first, before I ever had a chance of letting go physically. With my wedding dress, I was married 21 years ago, and am blessed to still be happily married. That was my dream dress– with lots of stories attached. I wore it once, had it cleaned and carefully put away.

I thought I had to keep the dress and eventually pass it on. But it has been over 20 years and I decided it was time to let it go. Maybe, it will become the dream dress for another bride who could create joyous memories of her own.

Focus on What You Are Gaining

Certain items have material connections to people and memories. But by holding onto items that are no longer being used or enjoyed, you are not really preserving anything, you are just hanging onto them. And hanging on is different than preserving. The memories built will remain forever in your heart.

The unexpected emotions that accompanied the letting go of my dress were sadness and grief. The sadness is what really caught me off guard. Ok, yes, there were even a few tears shed. This is all part of the process of letting go though. Letting go will make room for other parts of my 2021 vision. Saying goodbye to the past opens new doors to the future. It will allow you to embrace every moment and live life to the fullest!

Where Are You in the Process

How about you? How do you let go? How do you release things? Do you do it quickly or does it take you a long time?

Do you say good riddance or do you say goodbye with sadness? Or do you not say goodbye at all and hold on tight?

Maybe you don’t hold onto things. Maybe you don’t get attached and want to keep things to remind you of the past. Maybe you haven’t started letting go yet?

I also remember when I was clearing out my parents home, I vowed that I wasn’t going to leave “stuff” for someone else to get rid of. It’s just taken time to start that promise.

I’d love to hear your experiences with letting go – decluttering your home or someone else’s. Leave a comment below and share your experience with decluttering or letting go.

Maybe you haven’t started letting go and you are still thinking about it. If you need some encouragement or support, feel free to give me a call – use this link to book.

Remember it’s a journey, and wherever you are is exactly right.

Til the next time.

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