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Vacation Souvenirs

This summer are you doing a 'Stay-Cation' (is that how you spell a stay at home vacation?) Or are you going to go somewhere and call it a vacation? Going to the beach and listening to the sound of the waves sounds glorious to me, but no such luck this year. As a professional organizer I work with people who want to get rid of clutter in their homes and often clutter is too many souvenirs they have either purchased or been given by others when they are on vacations. And these seem hard to part with even when they no longer have meaning or purpose to those who own them.

When I was about 10 years old my brother visited New York City and brought home a statue of The Statue of Liberty. I thought that was absolutely the neatest thing ever. I asked him if I could have it and he said no. I decided someday I would go to NYC and I would buy me a statue. Thirty years later I did make it to The Statue of Liberty. We climbed up into the crown and looked out over NYC.

That was a wonderful sight. When we got back to the gift shop I looked at the statues and I didn't want to buy one. Three years later I went back and again and I thought I would like a statue of The Statue of Liberty.

I had found the display of the different statues they have had through the years fascinating. I made a compromise with myself; I bought a green eraser of the statue. It wouldn't take up much space at home; I could toss it in my desk drawer or keep it out for memories. That was all I needed to stop the craving for a statue.

And we have had a lot of good laughs about it. When on vacation and purchasing a souvenir take a few seconds and think where you will put it when you get home, do you have a use for it, will you want it in two weeks, and is it worth the money? If you buy souvenirs for others consider their space and remember this is your vacation and they won't appreciate it nearly as much as you do as you are in the experience. Instead, opt to send them a post card. If you do plan on sending cards pre print labels before you leave home, that way you don't use up precious time addressing the cards and you won't forget any friends. I always look for something small that will fit nicely into a suitcase, not taking up a lot of room or being heavy.

Pack some bubble wrap so if you find something breakable you can pack it well to get it home unbroken. If you have collections this is a nice way to remember your trip without just buying something to be buying. Spoons, thimbles, charms for necklaces or bracelets and Christmas tree ornaments are popular choices.

A neighbor of mine buys tee shirts, they don't take up a lot of room, and when home can be used. I took some of my old tee shirts and made a quilt to be used on picnics or laying out on the grass. The most unique souvenir I have heard about is to find a grocery store and buy a cleaning product unique to the country you are in. It makes cleaning more fun at home when using a cloth from Rome or a window gadget from London. I spend a lot of money on photos and putting them in albums so I decided before a trip I took to Italy that my trip journal and photo album would be my souvenir.

I have never been sorry. It seems the souvenirs we bring home can become burdensome to us by way of clutter and become dust collectors. My best advice is to not burden ourselves or others with 'stuff'. Your vacation is your memory. You will save money and space in your suitcase.

If you know specifically something your friends collect and would treasure then that is a souvenir worth buying. Marilyn's bio Marilyn is a creative organizer who helps women, seniors and their families create space and end clutter in their homes and offices by setting up custom made systems. Marilyn invites you to visit her website http://www.

marilynbohn.com where you can find solutions to your organizing needs. She offers free tips in her blogs, articles and videos for your home and office organizing solutions.

Marilyn is a creative organizer who helps women, seniors & their families to create space and end clutter in homes and offices by setting up custom made systems. Visit her website http://www.marilynbohn.com for free organizing tips.



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