I was cleaning out our storage room and came across my stamp collection. While I wasn’t an avid collector, I had several books of stamps and old postcards. The postal service released annual mint collections – all the stamps available that year with a description and significance of the stamp. I bought several years of these booklets.

While not an extensive assortment, I have several 1 and 2 cent stamps, a number of foreign stamps, and those eleven years of mint collections. I reached out to two stamp buyers and a stamp collector on Facebook. They all said the same thing, there’s no value in the collection. They are common and readily available. Event the mint collections that were “guaranteed to hold value” are worth only the price of the stamps.

My wife was into collecting Precious Moments, the teardrop-eyed ceramic figurines. Each year a symbol was printed on the bottom, meant to increase the value over time. The names of the figures often carry religious themes or are based on scripture verses. We purchased Precious Moments for significant life events like anniversaries, birthdays, or just because they were on a shelf. It was easy to collect these little characters and we “knew” that someday they would have value, so it justified the price of purchase.

Because the collection is sitting in boxes in our basement, we looked into finding out the potential worth. I contacted an auctioneer and he said, they have little value. Most are now sold in “flats” where a number of figurines would be sold at one time, with the hopes that someone would buy the lot. We do have some Precious Moments that apparently have collector value, if you can find someone to buy them. The majority of this vast collection are nice little teardrop-eyed hunks of beautifully painted ceramics.

As a baseball fan, I’ve collected baseball cards for a number of years. In fact, I have Minnesota Twins team sets for almost 40 years. As a kid, I remember trading cards and playing “floor baseball” with a friend. Then we went to ride our bikes. We grabbed clothespins and attached the baseball cards to the spokes, so our bikes sounded like motorcycles. I distinctly remember wondering if I should use the Mickey Mantle card. It was just the card of a Yankee, so of course I used it. I really do not want to know the lost value of making my bike sound cool.

Career. Health. Friendships. Family. Wealth. Travel. Time. Spirituality. Honesty. Compassion. Respect. Stuff. Security. Power. Kindness. Work. Love. Humor. Hope. Balance. Service.

What do you value?
What did you think had value, but seems of less value now?
What might you value in the future, more than you value today?
Would you like to buy some stamps or hunks of painted ceramics?

One thought on “Values

  1. Intriguing, Bruce! My involvement in hospice chaplaincy requires exploration of “legacy” and “loss”. Your thoughts in this article focus in similar ways. Seldom does any patient or friend mention that possessions have eternal value.

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