Saturday, September 13, 2014

The Thrill of the Hunt: Country Living Fair Finds

The Country Living Fair is tomorrow. I am beyond excited!! (Dear God, please do not let my sister-in-law go into labor tomorrow so that I can still go;)). In anticipation of the event, I am sharing again my post after my first year's visit. If you are there and see me out and about, say Hello:)!!!


There is nothing quite like the thrill of the find. After hunting and hunting ... and hunting through booth after booth, pile after pile, you see it. No, not Stephen King's clown, but that thing you just can't live without.

This past weekend, I attended the Country Living Fair with my mom, aunt, and future sister-in-law. Held in Columbus, Ohio every fall (there are also fairs in Austin, TX and Atlanta, GA), the fair is filled to the brim with kitschy crafts, decently priced antiques, architectural salvage, hand-made jewelry, camel saddles turned into shelving units - if you want it, it's probably there, tucked away in some corner underneath feedbag pillows and vintage photos.

What became quickly apparent as we wandered through the vendors' wares was that each of us had a different it. Just like in King's novel, where the monster turns into whatever the person fears most, the objects we desired emerged from our subconscious, the pattern of our collections revealing the patterns of our personalities.  My mom was on the hunt for unique jewelry, eventually buying a bracelet made of typewriter keys. My aunt's sole purchase was a tiny basket (I take that back, she also bought a $5.00 loaf of bread, which we teased her about mercilessly). Some of my earliest memories are of my aunt's basket collection; she had them hanging from her walls, her ceilings - everywhere. Funny enough, she is kind of like a basket herself; she likes to hold everyone together, keeping us all in one place as much as possible.

As for me, my it items speak to me. Quite literally. I usually buy things with words or images that capture my imagination. One of my favorite purchases ever is a sign that says, simply, "Simplify," which I have hung over the front door of each of the houses we have lived in to remind me to live my life as simply as possible. Unfortunately, I tend to "complicate." Here's what I bought.

We tell the story of ourselves through our possessions, the objects possessed by our spirits. In a way, this is a sad thing, because material things are so ephemeral, and no one can fully grasp the meaning of your possessions to you, not really. Oh well. I will continue to surround myself with the things I love. Looking at them makes me happy.

Oh, and if you go to the fair this year or next, eat some Jeni's salty caramel ice cream. The stuff is unbelievable. A/J

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