My Favorite Things

Blogging Chicks CarnivalIt is Saturday afternoon and I need a nap. All week I build a deepening sleep deficit and by Saturday I am desperate to catch up. But my husband is indulging in a golf game, my son is here playing quietly (but a four year old still needs at least a slightly alert adult in the room,) and the Blogging Chicks Carnival deadline is tonight. No nap for me.

But my mind is messy, clogged and uninspired. I hop on over to the Chicks’ site to find out this week’s theme for the Carnival – yes I know I do leave things to the last minute – and read that it is “Favorite Things.” Hmmm…well I could write an ode to my pillow – I do love my bed and the down duvet and pillows that cradle and comfort me when I finally get to slip in for a (much deserved) nap… Instead I click over to A Doggy’s Life (I just discovered her last week at the carnival and reading her is (almost) as good as eating cake.) Reading great writing always makes one a better writer. And I could use some help today.

In her post Doggy Stuff she writes about how on the first night of class she asks her students to name one thing they might go into a burning house to retrieve. She explains:

Many people get it. They know I don’t expect them to burn, literally or figuratively, for a diamond ring or a Palm Pilot once people and pets are safe. I just want to know what objects hold mysterious sway over them, what they can cradle in their hands—like a special stone picked up from the ground at Dachau’s concentration camp, like their daughter’s first tooth, like the collar of their best dog—to have all of life come rushing back like some great big unstoppable wave…
What would you save? A dog’s whisker? Your son’s first rattle? The ashes of your grandmother? Would you, like so many of us, grab the pictures first?

And that is it – with that question I know my favorite thing. Of course my son and his sweet laughter and my niece and her deep blue eyes are my favorite things in the world. Of course I would ensure that they were safe first. But my favorite “things,” the earthly objects tied to this realm, come so clear with her simple question.

If my house were burning down, I would be breaking through the arms of my husband, tearing past the firefighters, desperate to save my photographs.

It would be a futile task though. There are thousands to retrieve. Albums from my childhood, scrapbooks only half-finished, boxes of photo not yet sorted and scrapped, and my laptop and CD’s containing all my digital images. There are too many. I suppose I would first grab the scrapbooks and the laptop – they would be the quickest to get to. (As well, the laptop contains all my journals and writing, my other favorite things that I would want to save.) But to see any of my precious images burn would devastate me and I would be frantic and weeping like the flood and hurricane victims we see on the news.

Yes, my favorite things in this world are my photographs.

I love taking pictures – trying to capture moments, freezing love and emotion. Getting a great shot is a sweet rush and I savor and gaze at it on my computer for hours, completely intoxicated. I could spend a lifetime staring at my images, laying them out in scrapbooks and playing with them in Photoshop. So to lose them would be almost as tragic as losing my memory itself. Without the photos, my mind can only bring back unpolished fragments. I want the image too, and with perfect lighting if possible.

I crave time to take more classes and learn more about photography, to glean from artists who create such striking images. I wish I had time to scrapbook and record all the love behind each one of my favorite shots.

And although my photos are imperfect – I have so much to learn – I am grateful for the photos I do have, for the images that record the moments of my son Jackson’s and my niece Julia’s lives. To create beautiful pictures of these two treasures in my life – well that is second only to loving them in the first place.

Yes, photographs are my favorite things.

Find out what your other blogging friends’ favorite things are at the Blogging Chicks Carnival.

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  1. says

    I would be right behind you! That’s the one thing I can’t live without. Other than family being safe, of course. I can replace furniture, decorations and just about anything else in my house, but I can’t replace all the pictures I have accumulated of my daughter and family over the years.

  2. says

    I’m with you on the photos. I use my camera every day. I practically own Kodak. By the way Thanks for the nice comment you wrote on my blog, I really enjoyed reading it. I think you rock also and yours is one of the blogs I check out every day.

  3. says

    I also would return to retrieve my photographs…though I would have to run up 16 stories to do it (we’re in an apartment) that would be quite the chore, but it would be my pictures!

  4. says

    I have to agree with you too. Photos would be the one thing i would want to save once my family is safe. Ive actually thought of giving some of my “backup” pictures to family to store just in case something like a fire would happen, at least there would be another copy out there.

  5. says

    I adjust fire claims. The one thing that the lady of the house crys over the most is loosing her photos and the kids toys. It’s a great idea to have doubles in a safety deposit box or fire resistant safe.

  6. says

    I have to agree Janice. Photographs are a very precious thing. I would miss mine too if your house would burn down. Especially the baby pictures of our one and only son…
    Thank you for sharing your favorite thing :smile:.

  7. says

    Yes, photos are very important and the laptop. I was thinking that I should put everything together in one box to have ready in case of a fire.

  8. says

    I’ve actually imagined what I’d do “in case of fire”–and I saw myself grabbing boxes of pictures and hurling them out the window! Know what else I thought of when I read your post? My mom’s clothes! Wierd, huh? She died when I was in third grade, but my aunt saved some of her “nicer” things for me and my sis. I sometimes wear a BEAUTIFUL pearl-adorned sweater of hers (and some wonderful costume jewelry I’d never buy!). Whenever I do, it’s like she’s right there with me.

    Anyway, I sooo appreciated your comment to my Dr. K post, I followed everything you said. So easy to say it’s a “black and white” issue until you’re living that kind of life :/

  9. says

    This is so cool. I love reading these posts. I want to join, but am not sure how. I did post at blogging chicks carnival, so do I wait for a response? Thanks. I am not yet that great at putting things on my blog so any help would be appreciated.

  10. says

    Ya know what…that is what makes a person’s pictures so precious…it’s about their life and their family life…that makes them perfect!

  11. says

    This has me thinking that I better get everything backed up on a thumbnail and into my safe deposit box.

    There is so much on this computer….

  12. says

    I am right with you for jumping back in for the photos. We are in the middle of unpacking from a move and we downsized quite a bit. I have to say most of the stuff I am unpacking I could toss into a garage sale box. I haven’t gotten to my pictures yet and I can’t wait to unearth them because I truely miss them.

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