is that a rock in your pocket?

First, get your mind outta the gutter. This might be what the security guard asks me when I pass through security on our flight to Santiago or Lima or San Francisco. 

Let's just get this out of the way: I ♥ rocks. And pine cones. And shells. And worn beach glass. Messages in bottles. Driftwood.

{this guy loves stones too : by jos van wunnik}
I'm the girl who lugs stones down from the mountain with her. (I can be kinda clumsy--even without a big pack or big belly--so casing the landscape for pretty rocks underfoot while I hike works out well.) When backpacking I try to stick with the smallish stones. I collect and whittle down the collection on the way. When we arrive home, I always find a surprise rock somewhere in my rucksack--along with the yellow rosary given to me by a dear friend, which has been traveling the globe so rigorously for the past three years.

S entertains my addiction to flotsam. One of the best presents ever: a huge piece of driftwood he brought back for me from a kayaking trip. How he balanced that fat birdlike beauty across his kayak on the windy waters is another work of art in itself. Obviously we won't have space or weight (it's about 15 kilos!) left to bring the wood with us; neither the bags of rocks I pulled from the cupboard last night.

It seems I have stones coming out of my ears. Last night I chose a double, mounded handful of my favorites, placing the heavy ones on a windowsill and the tiny not-gonna-part-with-these in a bag with the shells. Shells are light, right? Someday I hope to have a rock garden (along with our herbs, flowers and fruit trees), with swirls of shells in between. A shell mobile for the boy.

{black stone spiral by jos van wunnik}
Living our transient life and moving a few times a year doesn't lend itself to gardening, not even hard gardening. I'm not a hoarder by any stretch, and I know you can't take it with you. But maybe just one more stone. The one with the plant fossil, or the stripey striated ones like tree rings showing centuries of compression, or the ancient stamp of shell from the mountain's peak--reminding us that we were all under water once. That we know how to swim.

Do you collect anything? Do you frequently weed out your collected?

41 comments:

Hollie said...

this post made me laugh. Don't get stuck in Chile because of a rock! :]

Krystal said...

boy? did I see boy? did I know this already? This is the first time I have seen it I think? Yay! I'm sad you can't bring the driftwood home :(

Ren- Lady Of The Arts said...

Mee Too!
I collect rocks, driftwood and shells- when we lived in the Caribbean I faced the exact same issues- in my yard now I have collections under some trees- I also have a perfectly formed 20 lbs round coral that my in laws brought back for me because I knew I wanted it forever!
Now days my monkeys are like me- just this weekend we came down the mountain with bunches of dried wood and red rocks-

Signe said...

indeed, did you just say boy? :D
and I love pine cones, which reminds me I need to go out and fine some in the botanical garden one of these days!

Have a great day dear and don't go collection any more rocks that you have to drag home with you now ;)

THE ALTERNATIVE WIFE said...

You totally made me laugh. My parents are such collectors of rocks, shells, you name it. They travel all over the world and lug things back with them. One time when we were heading back home from Barbados the security in the airport gave them a hard time about trying to take a huge rock back to the states :)

Chic 'n Cheap Living said...

Haha, I don't collect rocks but used to love to collect stickers as a child!

Err and I sorta collect purses - it's a dangerous and expensive past time!

Coffee and a Book Chick said...

*giggles* Love the pictures, and I too, enjoy good rock art!

LatteLisa said...

this one made me laugh. When we were moving from Iceland we sold and gave almost all our belongings, except for some books and toys for the children. When it was time to ship just a few boxes we noticed that the box of one of our daughters was extremely heavy. We opened it and there it was: her collection of rocks!

Stop collecting rocks, there's plenty in the USA.

I saw the word boy, too!!!

Jude said...

That is so sweet about the driftwood! I've been collecting shells since I was little (I guess it's pretty easy on a tropical isle). I love the story of S getting you that driftwood! I'm getting an image of you stuck at security now, lugging beautiful but big rocks :)

dennicapearl said...

omgsh, the beginning line of the post is hilarious.

i dont collect, but my mother has this collection of porcelain elephants that i love to admire :)


<3 dennica pearl
- through the eyes of a pearl
- vintage shop

Nicole said...

What a fun collection!! Stones, pine cones, and shells can be so much fun to decorate with!

Kristin Hjellegjerde said...

Gorgeous Stones Heather! My sons bring their collections into the house all the time.
I am beginning to collect art (and I do love hats) but I am not at the auction bidder stage for a long time.... haha. Starting at the beginning and was lucky to be given lots of wonderful pieces for our wedding.
Have a lovely day!

Stacey said...

Ha, ha! We collect sand-is that weird? Maybe, it's because i'm an island girl. Did i read the words "mobile for a boy." So, it's a boy?! I have another blog friend who creates amazing dolls with flotsam. Her blog is called flotsam
friends:-). Happy Tuesday to you and the fam.XX

kelli g. { bug miscellany } said...

oh yes, i'm a serial collector (as in, many collections, not a collection of serials. or cereals).

the geology nerd in my loves that you collect rocks.
i must confess, i almost never whittle down though. it's probably about time...

thank you for your sweet comment. it's greatly appreciated. i'm trying to work on the 'constructive' bit, and words like yours are very helpful. :) thank you.

Len♥reNeverM♥re said...

you are so funny!
I do love nature so much too!!

xo

Nikki said...

My Dad does the same thing. He'll carry down huge rocks when we go backpacking. I always thought he was crazy but enjoy seeing bits of our trip in his garden.

Dancing Branflake said...

Ha! I used to collect rocks. I've moved on to clothes now. It's a lot more expensive- maybe I should go back to rocks. These are beautiful.

Phoenix Peacock said...

I love stones that have layers and designs in them too. This artist is fabulous - and a new find for me - so thanking you for sharing! I've also been known to paint boring rocks and bring those with me to leave on my hikes. ha.

Poppies and Sunshine said...

I think flotsam is great to decorate with! It adds such a natural rustic touch to an interior.

JMay said...

haha! You are hilarious. I collect plane tickets, matches from places I have been, & wine corks :-)

thenextarrow said...

LOVE this post. so fun + lovely.

xo Alison

this free bird said...

I'm with you on the rocks. And with S on the driftwood. I have a big piece upstairs on the deck and love it. I feel like we're kindred spirits...when I came back home from my recent trip to Canada and was unpacking, my niece had filled one of my jacket pockets to the brim with rocks from a walk we took.

You know I am never throwing those out.

xoxo,
Carrie

Anna Walker said...

Hmmmm I don't really collect a lot! I guess I kind of collect musical instruments oh and shells too! But ever since I got little cousins and younger people in the family, I always have to give them away!

http://annawalker1992.blogspot.com/

Claire Kiefer said...

I have such a problem getting rid of books. I have an absurd amount of them, and I just can't make myself give them away!

Fashion Nicotine said...

Love it!

Debby said...

I will never outgrow collecting seashells! I have a rock that my hubby picked up and handed it to me that is the shape of a heart... I keep it in the laundry room to remind me that the menial task of laundry is a labor of love. xo

bananas. said...

i used to collect rocks as a kid. people always laugh when i tell them that.

now i collect shoes and it's lovely.

jules @ The Diversion Project said...

yes, we're a bit of a rock family too. my boys and i have random little rocks from all over the place dotted around the house. they could pick any of them up and say - oh this ones from paris, or this is from mt hotham - such great memories, all in a rock! xx

Tamara Nicole said...

Oh you are sooo cute! Seriously love that little fact about you:-)

Hmmmm I collect anything craft related, shoes, and MAc eyeshadow, but nothing cute like rocks!!!

Indie.Tea said...

I DO collect beach bits...those are so pretty!
But you know, the bay area and all of its lovely beaches have gorgeous bits that are waiting for you :)

Gracie said...

I love that your collection is nature based. A shell mobile will be the most beautiful thing. I hope you are able to make it.

I used to love rocks when I was younger. I was fascinated with picking the 'pretty' ones.

shari @ little blue deer said...

The stones are gorgeous, Heather! And they are little pieces you can take with you when you leave, some, but not all! ;) XX!

Diana Mieczan said...

I used to collect small stones and little rocks and now I have them all in glass jars sitting on my shelf as a decoration..That is such a great post,sweetie..Hugs and kisses

Ps: I’m hosting a sweet t-shirt and tote GIVEAWAY today, so please join in :)

MarchMusings said...

Nature is infinite in her variety. Did I just type that? Must be having a pensive moment!!

OneCraftyFox said...

I collect little rocks and shells to and display them in pretty little dishes on sideboards and such :)

Hope you are doing beautifully and filled with happiness! xox

koralee said...

I am a stone ...pebble...drift wood...leaf..pinecone...twig...
collector too...I always have something in my pocket...love your rocks. xoxox

Gabby / Gypsy*Diaries said...

I recently started to collect vintage globes and suitcases! They are just so pretty! :)
Thank you for joining the Ex-Presso / Blog couture giveaway! I hope you'll win! ;)
xxx

http://gypsy-diaries.blogspot.com/

Hiking in Stilettos said...

I love that you collect stones and wood pieces from your trips. I usually pick up small stones from our hiking trips, too. There's something special about such a concrete reminder.

hiven said...

I'm obsessed with seaglass at the moment
x hivennn. enter my giveaway? six whole miss patina dresses to giveaway.

Annie said...

so fun to have collections! I used to collect beach glass as a kid with my parents.. this post makes me want to go back to doing that :)

georgia~gigi said...

Oh, you so remind me of my mom!
She loves all those things!
When we visit my brother in Colorado, she is always bringing back lots and lots of rocks!

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