Although we’；ve always thought of ourselves as rather minimalist， we’；ve been realizing that we have attachments to things that we don’；t really want or need anymore， and have a hard time letting them go. What we are really attached to are the memories and associations the object spurs， afraid we’；d lose the memory if we could never see the object again. As a solutionpillow shams floral， we started photographing things we wanted to let go of to create a digital archive of “；Memory Stuff”；. It freed us up to give stuff away.
Now we have a photo to remind us the tiny blue-gray pebbles we collected as we sat for hours on a beach near San Francisco talking to a friend many years ago…；We don’；t need to write anything down， because the memories are within us， called up instantly.pillow covers farmhouse
We discovered a variation of this strategy in a recent SwissMiss post called Eulogy of Stuff； it quoted a Comment left on an Apartment Therapy thread by a reader named？slocumnavigator：
When an item is in dispute (meaning I want to sell， toss， or recycle it and the kids need to keep it)， we take a photo and stick the photo in a book， where they get to write a small eulogy about it. Then it goes out. You’d be amazed how this small project has taught them to view what is special and what is not.
A digital memory archive is an inexpensive way to “；have”； things without really having them， freeing you up to pass the real object on to someone who will value it， and make their own memories with/of it…；It’；s an antidote to “；stuffism”；.
In this way， we still have the thin beeswax church candles we bought on a Greek island， that smelled of flowers and honey…；
…；and the tin Dopey wind-up toy from a friend who died of AIDS many years ago…；
…；and the odd little chalice of molded sugar that we bought at a pastry shop in a tiny ancient town in Italy； it had been pure white and filled with tiny candies…；
…；and many other memorable things…；
All photos by Tara Mann.