Museum of Me
Christy Rush-Levine shared her Museum of Me on her blog, interstice. I loved it for many reasons. First, I admire Christy for the creative and diverse ways she uses mentors in her writing life. This idea came from Flow magazine, and Christy was inspired to make it her own, as a way to connect with her middle school students. I also appreciate the way Christy reflects on her own life and inspires others to do the same. She helps me be a better human and a better writer.
Christy writes —
I have been thinking about the ways physical objects shape, represent, and remind us of our identities…In Issue 31, the introduction to the feature reads, “The story of your life is often revealed in small, personal objects.” I love that.
I’ve been thinking a lot about my own Museum of Me, and finally reached the point where I quit striving for a perfect well-rounded collection and decided to settle on a collection. I’m sure this collection does not represent all of me, but I do know it is a collection with a little history and some representation of who I am.
1. When Andy and I got married, many people attempted to talk me out of adding a set of china to our wedding registry. I insisted on selecting a china pattern. I wanted to use it on a regular basis, and I wanted to pass it on to our children. I selected a simple white on white pattern with a silver edge.
2. My Grandma Myers passed on her mother’s Haviland china to me. I didn’t even know she had china to pass on to me. It is fragile. She insisted that I use it, rather than leaving it in a box.
3. My Grandma Miller passed on her china to me. My mom gave her the china for her 25th wedding anniversary. Grandma Miller visited often for meals and we usually ate off of the china. She liked that we used the special china.
4. My friend gave these to me as inspiration to write. She constantly is encouraging me and helping me believe that writing isn’t a pipe dream. There are many people who encourage me to write, and this represents the community who supports me.
5. This is the Bible I purchased in 2012, which was a year of healing for me. It is full of ideas and questions jotted in the margins, highlighted verses and study notes.
6. When I was young, my Grandma Myers gave me a china doll. It was broken when a friend was over. She took it off the shelf and my brother, Jeff, tried to take it away from her because he didn’t want her to break it. In the tussle, she was dropped and shattered. Jeff gave me this china doll as a replacement. Grandma Myers sent me many china dolls over the year, but this small doll is my favorite and sits on a shelf in my home.
7. My mom bought this for me before my wedding. We went to a speciality store and selected it. It would be many years later when I would finally learn to wield this tool.
Black Flair Pen
8. I write with a black Flair pen every morning in a journal. I collect prayers and research and scripture and reflection.
Live a Great Story
9. There is no backstory to this object. It is simply a daily mantra.
10. I love rings. This collection includes my engagement ring, a ring from my Grandma Myers, and a ring that Andy bought to give me at Christmas the first year we dated. However, I broke up with him before Christmas. He gave the ring to his mom instead, and for many years refused for her to pass it on to me. Finally, after 20 years of marriage, his mom overruled him and gave it to me.
11. My mom gave me these when I was young. Stork scissors went back generations in our family, and I felt so special to have my own pair.
Case Pocket Knife
12. At the age of 10, I was given Case pocket knife. I loved it and carried it every where. I spent many hours learning to carve, many hours in the woods whittling wood, many hours working animals out of a bar of soap.
13. When I was a college student and floundering, my dad gave me this pin. It had a quote attached that said, “We cannot direct the wind, but we can adjust the sails.”
Red Book A
14. I collect A’s. This is an A cut out of an old book, given to me by a friend. It represents more than my collection, but rather the richness of friendship and the way that stories connect people.
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As always you have replenished my soul! This is an amazing idea – The Museum of Me. I can see this as a great project for children too. I have to think about this long and hard and choose some items. Thanks Ruth for your never-ending inspiration!
Oh, how kind of you! Yes, it takes a long time to think about the items to choose. 🙂
Ruth, I so enjoyed seeing the objects in your museum. And I loved reading about each one. Precious memories. And what a gift to have it all written down.
Loralee! Thanks for stopping by and for your comments…always. You are such an encouragement to me.
Oh Ruth, your reply means so much to me. xo
I loved entering your museum! I remember stork scissors. How did you do the picture of the objects? I am intrigued. I thought that book A looked familiar. 🙂
I just used my camera and took a picture from above. 🙂
Such a wonderful way to archive the items that define you. Thanks for sharing. Like Elsie, I want to know how you created the image.
Thanks! I just arranged the items on a white blanket in front of a window and then took the photo by holding my phone high over the top. I added the numbers in Photoshop.
I absolutely love this idea! Thank you for sharing these parts of yourself. I love the story of the rings.
Thanks! Christy has GREAT ideas! Andy thinks the ring story is pretty funny, too!
I love this idea and appreciate the memories it invokes for me personally. I am glad you have mastered the art of pie baking. I now have memories of my Grandma Miller, your Grandma Miller, my daughter, and myself as pie bakers extraordinaire!
Thanks Mom! I sure do like that rolling pin! 🙂
I really enjoyed this post. Thank you for sharing all your special possessions and stories.
How kind of you to drop by and leave a comment, Maria! 🙂
Christy’s idea is wonderful and I love your sharing, discovering a bit more of what is special in your life, Ruth.
Thanks Linda! Christy always has the best ideas!
Museum of Me is a fabulous writing prompt. Every day objects but yet purely personal. This is the real me. Much thought can go into this. Love it. Thanks, Christy and Ruth!
Oh, I like the China Doll best!
This morning I was able to go back to where the timelines began.
I was so deeply moved by reading your story this way.
Because commenting wasn’t still available, I let you know I had been there by the like button.
Please know I was thinking and talking to you during every post. I felt your words in my heart.
You are amazing.
Each object is a story. What an incredible way to share. I missed Christy’s post and now am going to read hers. It’s wonderful to gain ideas from others.