Finding the Perfect Vessel to “Hold Your Thoughts”

June 15, 2010 by  
Filed under Memoir Space

Open For Business

Open for Browsing © 2010 Bo Mackison

Awareness is not the same as thought. It lies beyond thinking, although it makes no use of thinking, honoring it’s value and it’s power. Awareness is more like a vessel which can hold and contain our thinking, helping us to see and know our thought as thought rather than getting caught up in them as reality. ~~ Jon Kabit-Zinn

As the summer months approach in the northern hemisphere, I always make an effort to plan a few week-end trips to the small, rural communities tucked into the hills near the city where I live. Life seems to drift at a slower pace in these areas of Wisconsin, especially when the temperatures and humidity levels rise. It is this time of year when I enjoy a day trip to an outlying town or village.

Nearly every town has a few extra-special shops to visit – perhaps a quilting or antique shop or an art gallery, a brand new boutique or a variety store that has been selling their wares for the past five or more decades in the same brick building.

For those of you in the Southern Hemisphere who are heading into cooler weather, it is still a great time of the year to poke about in these homey establishments.

The Memoir Space invites you to take a writing break this month and go on a treasure hunt instead. A treasure hunt to find the perfect vessel “which can hold and contain your thinking,” those bits of memoir writing and projects you are collecting as the months pass by. (Though if your schedule permits, you could both write a story or two and go searching for that special container.)

Your container can be as plain or fancy as you wish, as decorative or functional as suits your own temperament. Of course, you may already possess a special container and simply need to re-purpose it. Or a trip to the local shops may inspire you to examine the boxes, baskets, and bags.

Leather Bag - Antique Shop

Antique Leather Bag © 2010 Bo Mackison

I’ve been scouring the antique shops in Wisconsin for a sewing basket to hold my growing stash of memoir projects and papers. My grandmother, a seamstress by profession, had a varnished wicker sewing basket, an oval container maybe fourteen inches in diameter, with a flat wicker lid. The top  was decorated with a tassel of threads and buttons. Since I record many memories of my early years when I lived with my grandparents, I thought it would be meaningful to find a similar basket for my storage purposes.

What kind of vessel would be fitting for your memoir collection? A cookie tin for the baker in the family? A pink vintage suitcase for the traveler or wanna be traveler?

Set of Pink Ventana Suitcases - Antique Shop

Pink Vintage Luggage © 2010 Bo Mackison

Or maybe an old fashioned doll trunk to hold a trunkful of childhood memories? A bamboo box for the naturalist? A quilted bag to hold an accumulation of old letters and memorabilia? Or one of these great hat boxes to hold reminders of the “good ol’ days?”

Marshall Field Hat Boxes - Antique Shop

Marshall Field Hat Box © 2010 Bo Mackison

What type of vessel do you have in mind?

When you find the perfect container to contain your collection of writings and other memoir media, why not take thirty minutes to write about your choice and how it relates to the life story you are recording. Then gather your memoir projects and put them all in their new home.


7 Responses to “Finding the Perfect Vessel to “Hold Your Thoughts””
  1. Chania Girl says:

    What a lovely post, Bo. I really enjoyed it.

    As you talked about the search for our perfect container, I kept thinking of the special boxes I’ve had over the years for my thoughts, dreams, gratitudes. It seems only fitting that my writing should have the same, as it (itself) is a vessel for ALL of these things for me.

  2. Anne Maybus says:

    Beautiful post, Bo. I love the idea of making the container as special as the precious things inside it. Your suggestions are fabulous.

  3. Joanne says:

    Bo, you never fail to inspire me. As you say “For those of you in the Southern Hemisphere who are heading into cooler weather, it is still a great time of the year to poke about in these homey establishments”.

    It is perfect weather to take a trip to the mountains, about an hours drive west of my home, to poke around in the village stores!

    I will leave with an open mind, and my camera and see what surprises await me. :)

    Thank you, Bo.

  4. Bo Mackison says:

    I have many vessels too, Chania, for thoughts, momentos, quotes. But I especially love my container that holds my memoir project.

  5. Bo Mackison says:

    Anne, hope you have special containers that make your space a pleasant place.

  6. Bo Mackison says:

    Joanne, wondering if you found any treasures on your mini trip?