My Treasure Box

Yesterday morning, I was rudely awoken by the fire alarm in our dorm going off. Needless to say, I was not a fan, especially since I only have one class on Mondays and it's in the afternoon. But the fire alarm made me think about my box of special things I have in my room back home.

I graduated from Calvary on a Friday & then moved out of my beloved room on Saturday. Since my sisters shared a room my entire life & I was going away to college, it made sense for one of them to move into my room. So I got rid of a bunch of things, stored some things in boxes in the basement, and packed a lot of stuff to take to Durham with me.

However, there were some things that meant too much to me to throw away or store in the basement. And what do you know---that summer, Ron was my love gift partner at camp & made me a Little Miss Sunshine box--perfect for storing at the end of the twin bed I now sleep on in Corrie's room & holding all of my special trinkets I've collected throughout the years.

So I've decided if there's ever a fire at my house, I'm grabbing my Little Miss Sunshine box and making a mad dash for the well in our front yard (hence why the fire alarm reminded me of my special box).

I have a bajillion things in here: my FaithQuest letters, photo albums, journals, etc. But this is just a glimpse inside my box of special things.

1. My beloved sheep

I know Calvary wasn't that big of a high school, but since I was coming from an 8th grade class of seven other kids, I was slightly overwhelmed by having almost 70 kids in my grade at the time (we graduated four years later with 50, just to put things in perspective...). A lot of the students had been together since elementary school, and while I had close friends at Center Grove, I knew it was going to be hard to jump in and make new friends. My birthday is close to the beginning of the school year, so I wasn't expecting anyone to acknowledge it. But sweet Amy came to school with this sheep. It's really funny, because she apparently wanted to get me something else, but we were barely fifteen and couldn't drive anywhere. She was at Family Christian with her mom & wanted to go to the mall, but her mom had things to do and was going straight home, so she bought this Really Woolly Sheep. It was silly and random... and it was the moment I knew that I was going to be just fine making friends at Calvary.

2. My Camp Bethel tree cookie collection

We make "tree cookies" at camp for name tags. Some of these are from my camper days, dating as far back as 2002, and some of them are from my summers on staff. It's fun to see how my handwriting and creativity has changed over the years.

3. 1991 Duke University National Championship Coke bottle

My mom works for a non-profit organization that helps families and individuals in crisis situations, and a few years ago, a man brought an entire case of these things to donate to their food pantry. Because there's nothing a needy family wants more than a 15+ year old coke to drink. Needless to say, they didn't put it out on the shelf at the food pantry, and one of them is now in my box of special things :)

4. My winning art contest Polaroid

Back in the day, before Walgreens existed, there was Eckerd. When I was four years old, the Eckerd in Clemmons had a Easter coloring contest. My papa picked up one of the pictures for me to color & submitted it... and I won! I'm thinking my artistic ability at such a young age was clearly derived from my tie-dyed shoelaces. Anyway, they hung the picture I colored and this precious little Polaroid up in the store for a week or so, and I got this stuffed bunny that was almost as big as me. Who knew I'd grow up to be an art major?

5. The billions of notes & pictures from my friends in high school

I'm aware that these little pretties only make sense to a few people, but just knowing that Kacey is currently laughing her head off at the stories behind all of her creations was worth putting them all up here.

6. My frog jewelry box

Simply because I'm the cutest frog ever :) Devin got this for me in Mexico as a way of saying "thank you for watching my demon-possessed sugar glider for ten days while I was on a cruise," or something like that. (Never EVER agree to babysit a sugar glider. One of the stupidest things I ever did. All the frog jewelry boxes in the world couldn't make up for that week and a half)

7. Camp Bethel candle

This was the craft back in 2008 -- a candle in a Mason jar. I made one during staff training, and I can't tell you how many campers tried to make one just like it. Super cute. I melted crayons to get the colored wax, obviously, and used a nail to punch out "Camp Bethel" in the aluminum foil. Then I cut out lots of circles and placed colored tissue paper behind it for all the smiley faces. The light from the flame of the candle shines through the tissue paper & the punched out "Camp Bethel." Well, it would if I ever lit it... :)

8. Various reminders of my elementary school love life

Let's be honest---I never went through a "boys have cooties" phase. I had my first "boyfriend" in preschool and many others throughout elementary school. When I was ten or eleven, my "boyfriend" at the time told me he wanted to kiss me. I looked him straight in the eye and said, "Um, I want my first kiss to actually mean something." Seriously? Who responds like that in elementary school? I was such a funny kid.

It was about that time that people started "going out" instead of just having a boyfriend or girlfriend, and that sounded way too official for me, so I didn't have a boyfriend again until I was almost seventeen. And it was actually a boyfriend, not a "boyfriend." Regardless, all of my "boyfriends" were some of my best friends in elementary school, and these two necklaces make me smile to this day.

The one on the left was from "boyfriend who tried to kiss me & got completely rejected"--purchased on a class field trip in 4th grade. And the one on the right was from my kindergarten "boyfriend" when his dad took him to Israel. I remember being a little mad about this one. When he asked me what I wanted him to bring me back, I definitely told him a bouncy ball. Does that look like a bouncy ball to you?

9. Clothespin dolls

My best friend growing up, Amanda, moved to New York when I was ten. She was just as crafty as I was & I have so many memories of painting birdhouses or making keychains or stringing beads together at her old house. Before she moved away, we made these clothespin dolls. We each made one of ourselves and one of each other, and I have no idea why I have all four, but I do & they are in my box of special things. (Let me know if you want any of them, Amanda!)

10. My gymnastics grips

Without a doubt, my best event during my many, many years as a gymnast was the uneven bars. I loved them, and I was
really good at them. After I decided in my teenage years that I did not want to move up to optionals & work toward eventually competing at the collegiate level, I threw my bag with my grips in the corner of my room and didn't touch it during all of high school. Then I threw it in my Little Miss Sunshine box when I went to college. I actually just opened it for the first time when I was home on spring break... and these things still smell like the gym where I spent so many hours of my life training. It makes me smile.

I'd be surprised if everything in this box combined was worth more than $10, but no matter how silly or random or seemingly insignificant, I wouldn't trade my treasures in my Little Miss Sunshine box for anything.