Drawers of Rocks


So much secret stuff.

I began on my back patio, seated on a glider at one end I simply looked around. On the whole there’s a lot of empty space to walk around the furniture, but there are silly things lurking inside some of the pieces that have drawers and other hiding places.

I counted all the furniture, potted plants, lighting (lamps that could be moved, not hard-wired fixtures), wind chimes, hanging tea light holders and gas grill. All pretty reasonable. I could probably do without the bar stools, hutch and small desk. I don’t need the grill, it was given to us and we’ve never used it, it should go to someone who will appreciate it.

As far as decorative items go, I have some cool pieces from Bali and other exotic places, but most were procured from a design firm/store I worked for and not from my own travels. Still, there are some keepers among them. For now.

Now for that hidden treasure…

Aside from all the furniture things can sit on, there are three pieces that contain mysterious items inside. Let’s take a look.

In and on the Teak hutch:

  • Balinese dragon cigar cutter – big wooden painted awesomeness
  • Old Indonesian pots
  • Old Indonesian house part – some carved wood thing that used to be on a house
  • Big ceramic cat
  • Wooden vase with curly willow and eucalyptus
  • Plant pots (terra cotta, metal, etc.)
  • Buddha head
  • Laughing Buddha statue
  • Kokeshi dolls
  • Tibetan temple bell
  • Small wooden elephant from India (my travels)
  • Indonesian tube thingy – carved and cool, but no idea what it really is
  • Small glass bowl
  • Incense holder
  • Ashtray – This is a terra cotta donkey “ass” tray. Cracks me up. Still one friend who smokes.
  • Candle holders – so many
  • Decorative rocks – seriously? Why? Two drawers full. Full. Small drawers, but still.
  • Small Buddha tea light holder
  • Candle snuffer – what century is this? Not one, but two.
  • Glass and silver plated coasters
  • Cork coasters
  • Essential oils
  • Eye dropper for oil
  • Ceramic lizard
  • Oil diffuser for light bulb
  • Small metal donkey – admittedly I have a thing for donkeys
  • Balancing kit for ceiling fans
  • Large iron plant hooks
  • Small iron plant hook
  • Loose tiles (for hot pots on the glass table. Maybe)
  • Random pieces of bamboo – for?
  • Chopsticks (pair), because?
  • Random drift wood
  • Heavy iron cauldron under the hutch. Pretty cool if you’re a witch.

In and on the Desk:

  • Bird puppet
  • Indonesian metal bird
  • Bag of tea lights
  • Citronella candle
  • Witches balls
  • Big ornaments
  • Wooden lizard from Jamaica
  • Lighter
  • Decorative turtle
  • Decorative frog – 2 just because
  • Cat toys – big with trapped balls
  • Unused seat cushions
  • Iron lizard candle holder
  • Bee catcher
  • Small rusted bird bowl
  • Soft pad thingys that get nailed into furniture feet – because we wouldn’t want to scratch the concrete

In the bench seat:

  • Hose nozzle – 2
  • Mosquito coil – 2. I don’t even know how these work, if they work.
  • Old metal paint bucket
  • Random candles – so many candles
  • Old rag – lovely
  • Old scrub brush – even nicer
  • Light bulbs
  • Rocks – what is with the rocks!
  • Remote doorbell
  • Bamboo stick
  • Old sock (rag, I hope)
  • Battery operated push light
  • Macrame Tibetan bell door hangers
  • Plastic grocery bags – so many. We don’t even use these anymore.
  • Paper bags
  • Part of a gutter guard screen – ripped and mean

In all the 675 square feet that is my back patio oasis, holds 366 items. Not for long.

I have to say, if someone came along and stole everything on my patio, I would be okay. There are no sentimental items or precious pieces. I love my patio and spend a lot of time on it, so I would miss somewhere to sit, and obviously some of the items, but I’m not at all attached. Good start. It’s not all gonna be so easy.

I know there will be some sticky places and some things will take forever to count – I have been making jewelry for over 15 years and playing with art and photography forever – but I’m committed.

Mostly I am curious to see what I learn about myself and what I’m ready to let go of. And really, how I will feel with less stuff. I’m imagining lighter, but I’ve learned the heartbreak of anticipation and expectation too many times, so I’m open to whatever the experience is here to teach me.

Here’s to a year of purging, playing and practicing mindfulness.

Oh, I forgot the curtains – make that 382.




4 thoughts on “Drawers of Rocks

  1. Jo Clutton says:

    Hi Allison,

    You made me laugh! I’m a hoarder. I collect antique curios, some very strange items, and I’ve done it forever. Well, at least since I was in my late teens in the early 70s. Started when I given quirky and not so quirky family heirlooms, and went on from there. Got two small and two large cupboards. One large cupboard is stuffed full! Anyway, I’ve recovered from thirty years of depression and I’m rebuilding my polymath creative life, of which collecting is just one interest. http://www.joclutton.simplesite.com

    Jo UK

    Ps Love your site!

    • Allison Andersen says:

      Thanks so much for your comments, Jo! My husband has two antique spaces and an ebay site so our home seems to fill up quietly before I even know it. I find strange figurines on bookshelves and old books on tables. But apparently I have some of my own skeletons to address! At least your treasures are contained!

  2. Margaret Huss says:

    What an exhaustive list! Great progress so far. Our garbage can and recycling cans have been filled to the brim for several weeks now so I know I am on track. But oh so far to go!

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