Also on one of my breaks I’ve been photographing things to
list on e-Bay. Aside from selling art down the road, I have another month for
one last big push to give one-of-kind, valuable sleepers and sentimental things with little value
new homes. I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned before, but I have a large collection
of Cracker Jack toys, boxes, tins and other memorabilia including a rare,
unopened Cracker Jill necklace. With a few exceptions the collection has very
little monetary value. The tiny plastic toys sell for $2 to $7 each but a dozen or so of my metal pieces would sell for $50 to $100 each which I'm not going to do. I struggle with the idea
of putting them all in a large mason jar to display on a shelf. I have them are
all in a divided fishing tackle box sorted by the dates issued and I can’t
bring myself to undo all that work of identifying the various series’. Where
was I going with this? Oh, ya, I made the tough decision to take all but one of my
Cracker Jack tin cans to Goodwill and to sell off the boxes, t-shirts and
Cracker Jill stuff leaving me with just the tackle box of toys. These were part
of the things I was photographing as a diversion from thinning down my dishes.
My love of Cracker Jack collecting goes back 75 years and what I'm keeping doesn’t take up
much space. I even had three complete sets of Cracker Jack baseball cards and
albums that I sold last summer. I’m proud of myself for letting those go. It took me several decades of hunting to pull those together.
More Dishes: When I was a kid my mom replaced the carnival
glass at the lake with Lily-of-valley dishes that were grocery store premiums
in the fifties. I love those dishes but my brother and I broke a lot of them and by the time I was old enough to care about pretty things there were only a few pieces of that pattern left. So I set out to build a set with a similar pattern from the same super market premium era.
had lily-of-the-valley in her yard and wore the fragrance and I can’t see a
bouquet of lily-of-the-valley without thinking of the gentlest side of Mom’s personality.
She could be a hardcore disciplinarian, too, and to this day my brother and I
still argue over which one of us she loved best. I think it was my brother
because he gave her three grandchildren and all I gave her was poodle grand-babies.
Back to the dishes, though, I’m keeping my lily-of-the-valley dishes plus some
vintage diner dishes and some olive vintage Fenton glassware that all blend together. The
diner dishes I use when I’m alone because I can throw them in the microwave and
dishwasher. Heck, I could throw them against a wall and they wouldn’t break. Not that I'd ever do that, but I have dropped a few on the floor. I
used to have a whole set of for ten of the diner dishes but I downsized them after my husband died to just four
place settings, plus extra cups, pitchers and serving pieces of all sizes. The pitchers
and platters will go on e-Bay soon. Mid-century style furniture making a comeback is
helping to make diner dishes popular again. My brain hurts from downsizing
decisions. At one point I even went online thinking I’d get rid of ALL my
dishes and start over with a brand new set. It was fun looking but in end the end I
recognized the shopping was just another diversion for avoiding what I didn’t
want to do and that was letting go of more of my memories attached to my dishes and green stemware, most of which were bought one piece at a time while combing antique malls,
flea markets and estate sales. ©