Possessions that have lasted longer than expected. - Mothering Forums

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Old 01-24-2009, 02:01 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Tell me about things that you own that have remained useful for longer than you expected.

I'll start with my planner, which my grandparents gave me as a graduation gift in 1994. It's some sort of black vinyl or fake leather, and it looks about the same as when I first rec'd it. It has openable binder rings so I can replace pages as needed. I keep my address book, 12-page month calendar, daily to-do pages, birthdays, misc lists, and misc papers I need for a short term project handy in it. I just realized recently that I've been using the same planner for almost 15 years! I have no desire to get a new one.

So, what do you own and use regularly that has lasted a long time?
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Old 01-24-2009, 02:04 AM
 
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I have a toaster oven that my parents bought in the mid 70's, and that I took with me to college. It STILL works great. Unbelievable!

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Old 01-24-2009, 02:11 AM
 
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loving this thread..

my auntie passed on to me my great gramas sieve(spelling?) (hand crank sifter thing) i don't sift stuff ingredients for baking very often but i do once in a while and it works amazingly well. the best use ive found for it..once my local health food store guy had a huge bag of spelt flour that he got but it was too coarsly ground and he gave me a huge bag. i sifted it all and got TONS of flour and lots of slightly bigger grounds that are gtreat in bread and muffins and stuff. not only that but it sits in a special place in my kitchen to remind me of the beautiful woman in my family down through the generations.

 

 

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Old 01-24-2009, 07:33 AM
 
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My MIL passed away last year and we inherited lots of things that have stood the test of time. I suppose antique furniture isn't that surprising, but I have a collection of wooden spoons that have been in use for at least 80 years, probably more than 100 (given the shapes they have been worn into), there's also lots of beautiful hand embroidered linens and handmade babywear that are well over 100 years old, that I'm not sure I dare use ever but I would like to at least use one of the most beautiful blankets to wrap the new baby in when she is born. I just love the sense of connection these things have, I like to imagine the women who went before stirring their porridge with the same spurtle I am now using to stir porridge on a woodstove much like they would have done in their little cottage in scotland. Funny how things go full circle.
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Old 01-24-2009, 06:06 PM
 
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We have a rocking horse that's gone through about 10 kids and like 3 generations. We also have a wooden kitchen that's gone through about as much.

DH has 2 pair of shoes that have lasted 8 years - sneakers and workboots. Which is odd because he's heavy and his dress shoes last only a few months.
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Old 01-25-2009, 02:16 AM
 
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our Tivo ... we bought it in 2002 and use the dickens out of it. it has lasted far longer than any other technology we own! DH bought one of our tv's at least 15 years ago, and he says if you'd asked him then, he would not have imagined keeping it this long. (and we won't be replacing our tv's with fancy plasma tv's this year, even though they are old and small)

non-technology: we still use my granny's Revere-wear pans that I inherited 14 years ago. I originally thought I would have upgraded by now.

antiques: we bought an antique sink 5 years ago for $35 and designed our bathroom around it. DH and I are arguing over whether or not it fits with the "spirit" of this discussion, though.

major appliances: another "argument" - do "normal" consumers buy things like upright freezers & tvs with long-term ownership in mind, or are they just as disposable as everything else? Our freezer is 8-9 years old.

Mama to 3 girls 12,8,3
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Old 01-25-2009, 12:20 PM
 
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Good boots - Have lasted 9 years!

Quilts - Some for 15 years. Do they ever wear out?

Hair dryer - I have had the same one for 17 years!
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Old 01-25-2009, 12:22 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Ann-Marita View Post
I have a toaster oven that my parents bought in the mid 70's, and that I took with me to college. It STILL works great. Unbelievable!
I am impressed! Ours never last more that 4-5 years before they kick it. What kind is it?
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Old 01-25-2009, 12:22 PM
 
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My braun hand blender. I have used it everyday at least once a day for 7 years. Still keeps going! Love it!

Christine. Unschooling mom to Hollis, Zobey, Zeda, Anna, and Wednesday. We have a lot invested in this whole family thing with marriage kids and a mortgage. You don't just give up on the whole deal when it gets difficult.
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Old 01-25-2009, 12:22 PM
 
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I have a tv that my brother bought me when I graduated college in 1991 - still works great!
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Old 01-27-2009, 05:40 PM
 
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My digital alarm clock just had its 20th birthday.

I still have the lavender rain slicker my grandma bought me in 1983 when I was 10 and predicted to end up 6 feet tall. I'm only 5'8" and the slicker is still too big, but I still wear it several times a year!

Grandma had excellent sense in choosing clothes. When she died 20 years ago, I got two of her sweaters, and I don't know how old they were then. I've worn them at least every 3 weeks or so, every winter since! One is an Irish fisherman's style (knotted pattern) that's needed one round of repairs to the cuffs, and just this year the lower front of it is stretched out of shape enough that I may decide to tighten it up. The other is made of yarn with little nubs of other colors, which look like they would just fall out over the years, but it still looks great despite being machine-washed! (I do line-dry everything, so that slows down wear and tear.)

Speaking of sweaters, I also have 2 that I bought at Goodwill for $2.50 each 14 years ago, also worn and machine-washed regularly ever since.

We have 4 melamine cereal bowls in assorted colors that I bought in a dollar store in 1992. Our wooden cooking spoons were 3/$1 a couple years later. These things have been used almost every day since I got them.

My son's bedroom storage unit is an old dining-room sideboard that was left behind in the basement of the house my parents moved into in 1972. My mom painted it to use as my changing table. When I was about 9, I got a less bulky chest of drawers, and the sideboard went to my parents' laundry room for misc. storage. Then they gave it to me when I moved into my first unfurnished home in 1996. It was in our dining room, then in our bedroom, and then it served a second generation as a changing table! It's so sturdy I can stand on it!

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Old 01-27-2009, 06:03 PM
 
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My highschool backpack! It's just a regular old Jansport, but I used it all through highschool, all through college (including some MAJOR economics-textbook-based abuse), and now DH and I use it as a carry-on bag, whenever either of us travel. It is still like new at 12 years old! Every zipper still works perfectly.

I know 12 years is nothing compared to some of the stuff you guys have mentioned, but there are very few practical items in my life I can look at and think, I had that back when I was in highschool! Actually, it may be the only thing.

Mara, mama to two boys born 05/2009 and 04/2011, after four miscarriages. 

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Old 01-27-2009, 06:10 PM
 
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I have black dress shoes from a thrift shop that I have had for 7 years. I have 2 skirts from a clothing swap that I have had for about 8 years, worn through 2 pregnancies by hiking them up above the baby belly bc they're plenty long. They're both much much older than that though. One is green velvet, the other is a striped black and white one. The black and white needs some stitching on the hem though.

Happy with my DH, 2 kids, dog, fish, and frogs
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Old 01-27-2009, 07:46 PM
 
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DH bought one of our tv's at least 15 years ago, and he says if you'd asked him then, he would not have imagined keeping it this long. (and we won't be replacing our tv's with fancy plasma tv's this year, even though they are old and small)
I bought my old TV when my ex and I got married - in August, 1991. It worked without a single hitch ever until last December, when it gave up the ghost all at once, with a spectacular white flash. We have a flat screen now, but only because of the blow up. I liked my old tv.

I expect stuff I get second-hand that's in good shape to last. I tend to expect wood to last (although the wooden spoons I got a few years ago have been a big disappointment, compared to my mom's 40+ year old ones that are still in great shape). What blows my mind is when I get some cheap, crappy piece of plastic or something, and it lasts for a long time...things like the white plastic colander that's put up with over 10 years of being used and abused (dropped, thrown by kids, etc.). It only died a couple of months ago when ds2 jumped on it.

I like things that are built to last. DH is currently using a dresser that I used for about 10 years...and it was my sister's before that. My dad was a furniture mover and brought it home from a move when we were kids. I don't know how old it is, but it has to be at least 40 years, and my family has had it for almost that long.

While I'm not looking forward to losing my mom, I hope I get her dining room suite...it was my great-grandmother's, and I love the sense of generations I get when I eat at it...

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Old 01-27-2009, 08:06 PM
 
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I have my great grandmother's tv. It's gotta be at least 40 years old - she died in '81. It's still kickin' but the color's starting to go...

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Old 01-27-2009, 10:59 PM
 
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My highschool backpack! It's just a regular old Jansport, but I used it all through highschool, all through college (including some MAJOR economics-textbook-based abuse), and now DH and I use it as a carry-on bag, whenever either of us travel. It is still like new at 12 years old! Every zipper still works perfectly.

I know 12 years is nothing compared to some of the stuff you guys have mentioned, but there are very few practical items in my life I can look at and think, I had that back when I was in highschool! Actually, it may be the only thing.
Yep... count me in there, my Jansport backpack, dh laughs at me, but it is still in great condition, four years of high school followed by eight of college

Kristin- Wife to J, Mommy to B (11), M-S (8), and little J (4) and J&J (7 months)
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Old 01-27-2009, 11:02 PM
 
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Yep... count me in there, my Jansport backpack, dh laughs at me, but it is still in great condition, four years of high school followed by eight of college
I have two of mine from highschool, too... they're maybe 12 years old?

Jenna ~ mommy to Sophia Elise idea.gif  (1/06), Oliver Matthew  blahblah.gif (7/07) and Avery Michael fly-by-nursing1.gif(3/10)

 

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Old 01-28-2009, 01:41 AM - Thread Starter
 
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The plastic comb that I comb my hair with every day is at least 20 years old and looks exactly the same as the first day I used it.

We have a 15+ year old pair of scissors that look new, even though we have used them to cut through just about anything you can think of. They are wicked sharp; I almost sliced off the tip of my finger with them back in college. I have another newer pair (5 yeras old) that are starting to rust/ don't cut well anymore. My dad, who passed away 12 years ago, had a knack for purchasing well-made things that were built to last. I love that I have random everyday objects in my home that used to be his.
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Old 01-29-2009, 02:04 AM
 
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The cheapest hot pot Wal-Mart had my freshman year of college in 1997 just kicked the bucket last week. I used it all the time to boil water for tea and coffee and anything else I needed boiling water for.

I replaced it with a much nicer all metal one.

Kristy, wife to Josh proud mama to Katie: since 3/08 and Emma since 8/12.

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Old 01-29-2009, 02:27 AM
 
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A $5 electric hand mixer that I bought over four years ago.

DH and I had been married just a few months and I was a first year law student. It was our first Thanksgiving and we had no money, whatsoever. For some odd reason I decided that we had to have Pavlova (meringue with fruit and whipped cream) for dessert!?!? It was not until I had separated a dozen eggs that I realized that I didn't have a whisk or an electric hand mixer. So, I chose to venture out of our cozy little apartment and head over to the only store open on Thanksgiving day...Wal-Mart, of course! I picked up the cheapest hand mixer available, returned home, and made a great dessert....: I told myself that the minute we could afford it, I would buy a KitchenAid hand mixer (or stand mixer!).

Well, over four years later, the bargain hand mixer is going strong and I hope it will last for years to come. I try to use it a couple of times a month, at least. We could have afforded an upgrade a long time ago, but I love using that little mixer. It reminds me of so many great times...

*Most of our furniture consists of beautiful pine pieces that my parents bought when they lived in England (over 30 years ago).

*I make our eggs in a Le Creuset skillet that my mom purchased almost 40 years ago. All of my wooden spoons were purchased by my mom a long time ago, too.

*DD wears an Austrian sweater (with embroidery and cute metal buttons) that my sister and I wore, when we were little. And, two of our cousins wore the sweater before we did.

*My Crabtree & Evelyn comb is one that I received as a stocking stuffer when I was about 9 years old. DH, DD & I use it, everyday.

*There is so much more...

Libby blahblah.gif, momma to my precious little girl (6/29/07) 
                        and wonderful little man (12/1/10)

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Old 01-29-2009, 04:20 AM
 
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A 19" Toshiba television -- 1988 to 2005
A chrome toaster -- 1940's to 2006
My VAIO computer -- 2003 to now (still using it -- not bad for an off-the-shelf PC!)

I really miss that toaster. You would put the bread in and it would lower the bread automatically. Then, when the bread was toasted -- and it always toasted it perfectly -- it would slowly raise the toast. No popping.
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Old 01-29-2009, 04:32 AM
 
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I've got a nightgown I got for Christmas 22 years ago. The screen print is cracked, but readable.
My laptop bit it last year, after lasting 7 years and getting used 365 days a year and going on a hundred business trips, and seeing me through midwifery school. I know 7 years isn't a lot, but it's like, 50 in laptop-years.
I've got a lot of shoes going on 10 years.
Some of my drapes are 30 years old and survive machine washing and up they go again. TG for polyester indestrucable fiber!

My high school backpacks, both Jansport, now have become my emergency kit (pair of shoes, flashlight, clif bars, first aid kit, etc).

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Old 01-29-2009, 01:58 PM
 
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I had to leave so many things behind when I followed my husband to America that most of what we have now is no more than 8 years old. What I did bring over was bought when I was in my early 20's. I have at least 6 sweaters that are worn at least once every 2 weeks over autumn and winter and still look like new. Not bad for 15 yr old clothes!
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Old 01-29-2009, 09:24 PM
 
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Yep... count me in there, my Jansport backpack, dh laughs at me, but it is still in great condition, four years of high school followed by eight of college

My jansport lasted quite a while-- until i started working, in fact. I should have bought a jansport this time.

I still have my parents sony tv from when I was little-- think must be atleast 20 years old.

Texmati-- Knitter, Hindu, vegetarian, WOHM. Wife to superdadsuperhero.gif and mom to DS babyf.gif24 months, and DD boc.gif 8 months! .

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Old 02-02-2009, 03:17 AM
 
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this is interesting, but I have little to add.. I buy a lot of preowned stuff, so I have no idea how old my things really are..
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Old 02-02-2009, 04:16 AM
 
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I have a loveseat that my parents bought about 20 years ago. It orginially was a couch and loveseat set, but we couldn't fit the couch through the door of an old place that we lived. The loveseat is actually still in AWESOME condition.
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Old 02-02-2009, 12:39 PM
 
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I had a Lands' End sweater that my mom bought me the summer I took driver's ed that I just threw out because the shoulders were starting to unravel. I wore it all the time during my last two years of high school and to work intil about 2005 . The last couple of years it was ratty, but I wore it around home. I'll be forty in a few weeks.

My favorite spatula was bought in a dollar store right before I moved into my first college apartment (in 1989). Boy has it flipped a lot of pancakes.
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Old 02-02-2009, 02:53 PM
 
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Old linens - the real linen material linens. I have many white linen table clothes (too many) that were given to me by elderly relatives that have long since passed away. I also have lots of hand towels. These things have to easily be 100 years old.

It is interesting that stains are not a problem. We use the towels as our everyday hand towels and they are still very white, unlike the ones I purchased over the past several years.

My all clad cookware. I am confident I will have these pots and pans the rest of my life.

Mom to DS, born fall 05 after ,,, wife/best friend to DH We have
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Old 02-02-2009, 10:23 PM
 
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Fascinating topic!

Hmmm... I am looking around our house (well, the living room for real, but in my mind, the whole house...LOL) wondering what is considered "old"... Soooo many things are built to be disposable these days that it gets really tricky trying to buy durable goods.

Stereo and speakers - more than 11 years old - no idea when DH got them, though, or who from (new or used?)

Love seat - I bought it used 15 years ago from a small family-owned store named Reliable Furniture...such a fitting name, eh???

Shoes - I just wore the shoes I got married in the other day. They were white originally(9.5 years ago), but I had them dyed black and wore them for years as "dancing shoes". I broke them out for the symphony recently (school field trip). All the 2nd grade girls pronounced my shoes "the best". :LOL:

Nightshirt - Lands' End t-shirt style that I purchased on clearance in a mega large size to get me through pregnancy has lasted more than 8 years.

Braun hand-held blender and mini food processor (and other attachments we don't use) - We use this frequently and have been pleasantly surprised it has lasted over 10 years.

Premiere 2100 cookware (aka Cook Best) - I don't know if this counts or not because we purchased this EXPECTING it to last our lifetime. The surprise is that most people think it is brand new and it is 10 years old this month. We use it every day, several times a day most days. (It is stainless steel inside and out. The plastic handles could use replacing, but they don't show much. All people see is the shiny stainless.)

Ikea furniture - I have one bookcase that is 23 years old!!! Yes, I have stapled/nailed the back on a few times, but otherwise it looks fine. Our family office is all from Ikea and it was the first room we furnished when we moved into this house almost 9 years ago. The newest piece is about 2 years old and even though the finish is the same on ALL the pieces, the newest one still looks out of place.

"Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless." - Mother Teresa

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Old 02-04-2009, 08:39 AM
 
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My highschool backpack! It's just a regular old Jansport, but I used it all through highschool, all through college (including some MAJOR economics-textbook-based abuse), and now DH and I use it as a carry-on bag, whenever either of us travel. It is still like new at 12 years old! Every zipper still works perfectly.

I know 12 years is nothing compared to some of the stuff you guys have mentioned, but there are very few practical items in my life I can look at and think, I had that back when I was in highschool! Actually, it may be the only thing.
Same here! Except my Jansport is (counting in my head here) 14 years old. DH has been using it for work for 6 years now (everyday) and he can be tough on it. We also use it when traveling. It's held up so well and been through the washing machine about 3-4x a year.
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