cookie press box

Falling Out of Love With Your Stuff

When you first saw them, you simply had to have them – it was the perfect cookie press, and that was the best backpack possible. The sheer intensity of your longing blinded you to the fact that you invariably buy cookies and never, ever go hiking

No matter. Things were going to be so different now. You actually felt as if you’d been temporarily possessed, driven to acquire these objects. They were just so perfect, you had to have them. They were going to make everything so very much better.

You’d host cookie exchanges, your heart swelling with pride as you watched your friends make a beeline for your cookies. You’d join a hiking club now you had this swell backpack with all its pockets and straps. Maybe you’d meet someone special once you were a proper, serious hiker with the right equipment. You imagined glorious sunset hikes and deepening connections to potential romantic prospects you’d meet on these outings.

You’d prepare a whole tray of tempting cookies to offer them when you casually asked them to come over. Over time, a particular cookie would become your signature cookie, the one you first shared together. You’d prepare them for your engagement dinner, the wedding reception, the shower for your first…there was no end to the uses your besotted mind could come up with for this extremely attractive cookie press.

Cost was no object, in fact given the number of times they were going to be used, it was a huge bargain. You thought about getting a couple extra backpacks, maybe a back-up cookie press just in case. The transaction was quickly completed and you set off home, beaming with anticipation.

At first you were thrilled with your purchases. The shiny cookie press sat carefully on the counter, waiting for the perfect moment to be used. You smiled every time you passed it – ah yes, that great cookie press! The backpack hung proudly in the coat closet. Can’t wait to go hiking with that wonderful backpack.

But after a while, you stopped looking so carefully, the things became invisible as more and more things came into the house. Every so often you wondered whatever happened to that cookie press, but for the most part the things you once felt driven to acquire, that you loved and spoke to you so seductively, are forgotten.

Or maybe before you even got them home, you felt angry with them and yourself. Why oh why did you buy them? The latest credit card bills were once again full of charges you didn’t remember making. Once the thrill of the purchase passed, the things themselves became an embarrassment, a source of shame. You shoved the unopened bags down the side of the closet and tried to forget about them.

In our culture, it’s hard to resist the pull to spend, spend, spend. Marketing is honed to a science, and if we can stay out of the stores, pretty much anything that seizes our fancy is just a click away. They make it so darned easy, it’s hard not to spend what we don’t really have or buy what we don’t have room for.

What do you have that you no longer have a crush on? Are you ready to call it quits and tell that cookie press things are finally over between you two? This week, as you get ready for Valentine’s Day, can you break up with something in honor of your true love and heart’s desire, a home that supports you, makes you smile and makes you glad you have it to come home to each day?

The true long-term love you received from your well-ordered space may not be as giddily exciting as the infatuated thrill of  getting the latest shiny thing on sale, but it will be there for you long after the cookie press, and the backpack have been consigned to the donation bin.


  1. What a lovely piece, as usual, Lucy! I’m finding a lot of ‘cookie presses’ 🙂 Kathleen

  2. Instead of hauling all the extra books in my bookcase to consignors, I am taking pictures of my book shelves then bringing in only what the Book Worm of Boulder Book Store will buy. Can’t move with these again, cheaper by the pound to re-purchase them. Building my garage sale pile for May! Then what’ s left over gets donated to VietNam Vets of America. I love it!


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