I keep Playbills, concert programs, charms, photos (I have boxes of photos), stuffed animals, books and pieces of art. My dream is to one day have built-in bookshelves to store the seemingly endless books that I've collected, but since that won't be happening anytime soon, they sit in boxes.
For a while I stored this stuff in my parent's attic, which seemed to be the black hole of storage, until I came home for visits and my stepmom had painfully endless tasks for me to do up there. I think she was doing this so that I would eventually move my stuff out of the attic rather than consolidate herself the endless wardrobes of clothes that she never wears or the boxes of shoes that also lined the attic and took up the space. I'm sure that was an oversight.
So one day, dad and I boxed up all my crap and moved it to grandma's house, where she had an empty basement. Now grandma is calling and asking when I can move some of that stuff out so that she can have more space for the air hockey table for the grandkids. Seriously. My childhood mementos and memories were in jeopardy so my slacker cousins could have an air hockey table. Are you kidding me?
Grandma comments when I see her that I have a lot of useless stuff, but to me, it's not useless. It's nice to box up parts of your past, good and bad, and visit it every once in awhile. This stuff may be useless to her, but to me, it's remembering sitting on the benches at Summerfest for my first concert (Bon Jovi) and the summer I managed to read "The Great Gatsby" and "Gone With The Wind." Trust me, I was a total bookworm nerd.
I can part with things easily now, like magazines, newspapers and small pieces of paper I somehow hold on to, but in the end, I know what is valuable to me and I hold on to it, hoarding or not. And so far my stuff in her basement has been able to accommodate the air hockey addition to our family, that is until the Foosball table comes into play, then we'll have to talk.
Do you have something(s) that you collect or cannot part with?