Saving the Squishy Jammies

In early Spring we bought Sarah 4 new pair of pajamas.  2 she hated immediately because the top and bottoms snapped in the middle and she would just not have that at all, and the other 2 were the typical zip up.  Even though I bought them well beyond her size, they still fit quite snug, prompting Emily to call them the “Squishy Jammies” because Sarah looked all squished up in them.  Her arms looked like little sausages stuffed in them.  Every time Sarah wore them Emily would grab her arm and squish her while saying “squish, squish.”  This has gone on all summer to the point where Sarah requests her Squishy Jammies at night.  It didn’t stop there…

The other jammies were called the “fluffy jammies” which also required a specific action, and finally we have the “pokey jammies” – poor Sarah gets poked by her big sister every time she wear them.  The girls love it and every night we are all laughing, squishing, poking and fluffing each other into oblivion.

Well, ahem, I noticed this week that the squishy jammies have a rather large hole in the foot.  Sarah has finally burst out of them and, unfortunately, Emily was with me when I noticed it.  She was so sad she actually shed a tear.  “Can I save them?”  Emily asked.  With my traditional eyeroll and sigh, I said yes.

Now, I am not sure exactly when Emily got started saving all of the things she has loved over her 9 years, but I may have had something to do with it. 

So we washed them up, hung them on a hanger and placed them on Emily’s wall so she could love it forever.  This is not the first of Sarah’s clothes that hang on Emily’s wall and I am sure it won’t be the last.

I love it that she loves these things of her sister’s so much that she wants to save them forever, and I hope it never ends.  HOWEVER…

We have a big bin in the basement labeled, “Emily’s Special Stuff”  that she loves and wants to save forever.   What can I say?  She wants to remember a lot of stuff.

Again, I am not sure when this all started, but I know it must have come from me.  Sometime in her early years someone must have given her something and I must have told her to save it so she can remember it forever.    Not realizing the impact it would have.  Now why she couldn’t remember me telling her to not pick her nose I will never know. 

I am not a packrat.  I will save the occasional card, or letter.  I have 3 bins max from birth to age 36 that I have saved and most of what is in those bins is from my mom who saved my school stuff.  Yes, I would like to save stuff forever and ever, but we can’t afford a house with an entire floor dedicated to remembering!  Plus, I would probably forget to remember to look at it even if I saved it.

The first time Emily saved something was at dinner when she was 3 years old.  She had a TV dinner which was a BIG deal and suddenly she crept out of her chair, muttered that she had to go potty and was gone in a flash.  Sensing something was up I followed her down to her room.  She was closing her nightstand drawer when I came in.  She had saved a SPRINKLE from the pudding that came with her TV dinner.  Why?  Because, and I quote, “I never get tv dinners and I loved it so much I want to save it forever!”


This was closely follwed by a scrap of bacon because apparently it was the best piece EVER. 

Once we established that we can’t secretly save food in our bedroom, she moved on to saving other very important special stuff.  Her nightstand drawer finally overflowed with special stuff and she upgraded to a dresser drawer and finally we had to archive it all to a bin.  About once a year we do look through the bin and she laughs at the stuff she has saved when she was 3.  “Wanna throw it?”  I always ask excitedly.  To this she replies, “No, I want to remember that I was a dork.”

I get that.

I am torn, sometimes, between my need to declutter and the way my heart melts when I see that she saved a rock.  You know, that rock,  the one from outside that restaurant when we had so much fun.  The things that she saves really captures her life and are important to her.  The fact that she can pull out a coloring sheet from Preschool and know exactly why she has saved it astounds me and makes me swell with pride that she loves her life so much she wants to remember it. 

I need to stop the eyerolls and sighs and find more space.


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