I don’t know when it started, but maybe it started after my husband and I had collected seventy-two stuffed animals, and we realized that they were taking up valuable real estate. We needed to stop buying stuffed animals for each other for birthdays, holidays, and anniversaries. I think that’s when we turned to coffee mugs. We now have far more than seventy-two mugs. I periodically have to cull the chipped and cracked ones. It is hard to do. It’s like saying good-bye to an old friend.
To keep them safe in my memory, I thought I would photograph them and write about their lineage. They are nothing flashy, just some cups that caught my eye or were given to me. Their power is in the memories they hold: who gave them to me, why I gave them, where did they come from? They are creating a timeline of my life and help me to reflect on the past. They are artifacts of my time here: my time sitting down with a steaming cup of coffee, tea, cider, or cocoa, my time meditating, inhaling the cup’s contents and feeling at peace, at least for a little while.