Shopping in your own closets

  • My sister Mary (holding Sheba the cat), from left, with brothers Nic and Rex, playing Monopoly in the kitchen about 1961, says Susan Anderson-Khleif.

    My sister Mary (holding Sheba the cat), from left, with brothers Nic and Rex, playing Monopoly in the kitchen about 1961, says Susan Anderson-Khleif. Courtesy of Susan Anderson-Khleif

  • My sister Mary, herself bereaved having lost her husband, gives good advice and we understand each other, says Anderson-Khleif.

    My sister Mary, herself bereaved having lost her husband, gives good advice and we understand each other, says Anderson-Khleif. Courtesy of Susan Anderson-Khleif

 
Posted9/26/2020 6:44 PM

I was talking with my sister and telling her how I found many useful (and lost) kitchen implements in a kitchen cupboard I had decided to clean out. It was too stuffed to be useful. So I took everything out.

And that's how I found two well-seasoned cast iron skillets that I had I been looking for the last year! And I found two muffin tins, needed for some corn muffins I wanted to make. And found three more pie plates, a ricer and a flour sifter. All had been "lost" for ages.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

So I realized I just acquired many valuable items (valuable to me) by this simple act.

It takes years to season those iron skillets by use cooking with high heat. They sell at estate sales for a goodly price, but these are not for sale of course. And no estate sales for me while coronavirus is out there.

So my sister was happy for me and said, "Once in a while, I go shopping in my own closets and find new clothes I've never even worn."

So here is another at home activity -- it's worth it to go shopping in your own closets and cupboards.

A while ago, I wrote about clearing clutter from storage areas and drawers. Especially when bereaved, and when coping with long-term grief -- it's easy to just stuff things away, out of sight, out of mind.

But I forgot to think about other places that actually have, not clutter, but many useful and desirable items. Getting into those cupboards amounts to "shopping in your own closets." Love the idea. I'm going to do more of it.

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I'm very lucky to have a lovely sister I can talk to about these matters. She also lost her husband, way before I did, although she's five years younger than I am. She's a great friend.

We understand each other and she gives good advice. It is so important when bereaved to have a friend who helps you keep perspective and make wise decisions. Our brother Nic was like that too. We miss him. But we should not be gloomy.

The point is: Sometimes "gifts" and surprises are right under our noses and may not cost a cent. And we need to reach out to those one or two others you can trust for advice, support and good ideas.

• Susan Anderson-Khleif of Sleepy Hollow has a doctorate in family sociology from Harvard, taught at Wellesley College and is a retired Motorola executive. Contact her at sakhleif@comcast.net or see her blog longtermgrief.tumblr.com. See previous columns at www.dailyherald.com/topics/Anderson-Kleif-Susan.

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