Monday, 28 March 2011

saving vs. savouring

I'm a saver. And I fear I'm passing it on. My daughter received a Lindt Easter bunny last Easter, and she just decided to nibble on its ears last evening. My younger daughter ate hers the day she received it. Luckily, it's good Swiss chocolate and it hasn't gone bad. She certainly savoured it as her sister looked on.

I do this all the time, especially with yummy foods like chocolate. I remember getting Hallowe'en candy as a kid. My younger brother would finish his haul within a week, and mine would last me until Easter. When we would go to A & W as kids (a rare treat when we were in the "city"), he would gobble his burger and fries right away as I looked on. Only when he would finish his would I begin to eat mine.

When we were living in France last year, my aunt brought us some pesto sauce from the Cinque Terre region in Italy - where pesto was "invented"! There could be nothing more lovely to me. Pesto is definitely one of my favourite foods, and to have the "real thing" from the place where it originated - oh man. I finally got the nerve to open the container last month, and I've been carefully storing it in the freezer so it won't go bad before I'm finished using it (this has happened before when I've saved something too long).

And I extend this habit beyond food to piles of fabric, closets of craft supplies, drawers of stickers, and other precious goodies... all waiting for the perfect time for me to use them. A time that has not yet come, and maybe never will.

I wonder... what am I waiting for? Or do I not think I deserve to use nice things or eat yummy things? What would happen if I truly savoured these items upon receiving them? Does the pesto taste better because I've saved it, tucked it away for so long, assigning some special importance to it?

There are crafty things I hold onto - maybe I can blame this on my teaching, but I'm pretty sure I did it before I became a teacher. I always think: maybe I'll have a use for this some day, so I'd better save it. But perhaps if I gave it away, someone else would be able to savour and enjoy it now. This seems better than just saving it.

Some things that I save can be savoured over and over again, like letters and photos - memorabilia that takes me back to certain times and places. These things I can't give away. Not yet, anyway.

This week I'm going to try to go through my house, looking for things I can savour right now and use, looking for other things that someone else could savour, and deciding on what must be saved.


  1. I too am a saver/savourer. Maybe it was our upbringing. With the entrance of Madeline into my life I now have someone else to save for (just in case she wants it in the future). My personal saving is on the back burner, but I may just be setting this standard for my own child. It's hard to know what to keep, what to give away. Some people are so good at this. I don't think this is a bad thing, but know that there needs to be balance too. With a quickly growing babe savouring her childhood has become the most important to me because saving won't keep her tiny forever.

  2. Bethany - yes, savour her and these moments! Photos, journal entries - anything to slow down the passing of time.