Thursday, September 12, 2013

The Hope Chest

When I was in college and in my 20s, I had a hope chest in which I kept items that I was saving for my eventual marriage.

Now, I know some readers think that's a delightful old tradition, and I know an equal number think it should have been thrown out with corsets and male-only voting.  But nonetheless, I had one.

There wasn't much in it, and it honestly wasn't even a chest.  When I bought my first house, I kept my hope chest items in the bottom drawer of my china cabinet.  I only had a few things, mostly good serving ware that I had no use at the time for but wanted to save for use at future family holidays.  But the important part of the "hope chest" is that it allowed me to enjoy my dream of being married and having a household that I would fill with things I would enjoy using.  It gave me pleasure.

Well, I realized the dream of finding Mr. FC&G, but I have recently started my hope chest anew.  As we dream about our eventual retirement in Key West, we certainly have the practical considerations put together in the form of retirement and savings accounts that will help us fund the dream.  But I have also started to collect the things we want in our future beach house.

Above you will see one of my "un-quilts," done up in colors that I hope will find their way into our future home.  It is now part of my hope chest.  And this hope chest is entirely metaphorical -- I don't have a special place to put these things, and, indeed, I will start using them right now.  This un-quilt is currently sitting on the bench at the end of our bed, and we will certainly use it for summer picnics and the like.

But its purpose is far larger.  Every time I look at it, I get a renewed surge of energy for working toward our dream.  It is keeping my hope alive, and that makes it part of my hope chest.

What are you doing to sustain your dreams?

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