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Friday, November 24, 2006

Rian, You're On

Rian and I had a discussion about women's purses on her blog. In response she published a photo of her purse and contents and threw down the gauntlet for all of us to bare all about our purses. Here's mine.

I've always had to have a shoulder bag because I hate to have my hands tied up holding a purse; I also insist on an outside pocket that is big enough to carry a file folder and a book, I go nowhere without a book. It takes me so long to find a purse that meets my specifications that I buy a good one that will last a long time and I almost never change bags, no matter what I'm wearing. [I love being 68, I can dress and act the way I choose no matter what the fashionistas say.] This bag is a Fossil woman's heavy leather briefcase that I found at Foley's (now Macy's) over a year ago. I don't think I could wear it out if I used a hatchet.

In it I carry a wallet that holds money, checkbook, credit cards, an ID, and one colored and one sheer lipgloss, and has a shoulder strap if I need to pull it out and take it and leave the rest in the car (right after I purchased it my youngest daughter's puppy chewed the strap in two, so I knotted it and use it anyway); an Ipaq that takes the place of the memory I used to have (Joe gave it to me for Christmas a couple of years ago to take the place of the huge Franklin planner I carried); a brush, mirror and small flashlight; a package of Kleenex; bubble gum; 4 pens & pencils and an emory board; a tiny folding magnifying lens and a tape measure; a small pocket knife and a baggy with Darjeeling tea bags (my kids never have tea bags).

For waiting rooms, etc., I carry the book I'm currently reading (note the name of this one, "Women's Work, very appropos) and a plastic case holding a small needlepoint project and folding scissors.

Then comes the stuff that most people don't have to carry and I used to not have to (please do not comment on my grammar, or lack thereof). The plastic makeup bag with a red cross on it carries emergency medical supplies: a glucagon filled syringe and glucose tablets in case of low blood sugar because I'm on insulin; nitroglycerin tablets; a rescue inhaler; and emergency meds info. Another plastic case carries a pill holder, cough lozenges, and dry eye drops. There is also a folder for the front pocket that holds other emergency medical info for both me and my parents, since I hold heir medical POA.

And I cannot forget my keys and my small digital camera as well as a book of matches. I think that's everything. Whew! Needless to say this all gives my kids fits, and Joe threatens to buy me a little red wagon to carry it all.

Had to edit to add that I arrange the items in my purse as it I were blind; every item in my purse has it's own spot so I can find things in the dark by feel. I hate the idea of having to dump everything out to find something.

And then to make it all more impossible, when I am away from my home oxygen concentrator and 50 foot tether, I travel with Ursula Oxygen, who is an over the shoulder pulse dose oxygen supply.

Years ago, one of my work colleagues asked me if I had been a Girl Scout since my motto seemed to be "Be Prepared". All my friends and family know that if they need something, they can come to me and I probably have it in my handbag.

I was never a lipstick and American Express card in my jeans pocket sort of girl; my personality tests always suggested that I might try to prioritize better. But my motto is really "ABUNDANZA!!!"

I admire your small purse, Rian, but I have no idea how you do it.


Rian said...

WOW! It leaves me breathless reading about it! I'm curious about the Ipaq (love the post-it notes on it, btw). What's it do? I may need to have one of those...

Were you a smoker? I always wonder that when I see people with oxygen. When I was deep in the pain of quitting smoking (8 years ago), my online quitting group often said that was what you were giving up when you gave up cigarettes--a portable oxygen tank. So now I wonder if that was really true.

Jane Ann said...

Fran, I LOVE your purse! We think a lot alike--if I'm ever caught in a snowstorm, YOU are the chick I want to be snowbound with. "Be Prepared" is my guiding light too!

Suze said...

Gee...we have some of the same wants with a bag - I have to have the shoulder strap variety too (though my chiropractor shudders everytime she sees my bag) and I never change my bag to match my shoes or whatever...I used to think I had to have a light colored bag in the summer and a dark in the winter...but gave that up years ago! I keep stuff in the same spot in the bag too - if it gets moved, I get quite annoyed with myself when I can't immediately put my hands on what I want.
I dunno how Rian (or anyone that has a tiny bag) does it either!

Deb Geyer said...

WOW! I think that little red wagon is a definate possibility!

I second Rian's request for info on the Ipaq.

Granny Fran said...

Ok ladies, my Hewlett Packard iPaq is a pocket computer, with a small screen, that has a calendar for appointments, address book, a notebook for keeping notes, a spread sheet, photos and even plays music. It also has a digital camera, which I don't use because it isn't as good as my camera. I can write on the screen and it translates it to text. It is amazing! At first I didn't think I'd ever figure it out but now I'm addicted. It's my brain now that my own brain is getting too full to be able to access data. Bless my dear Joe for thinking of it for me.

Rian, I have never smoked, but most of the people I know on oxygen did or suffered from second hand smoke in the home. I have a rare auto-immune disease called Sarcoid, that causes my immune system to attack my organs, mainly lungs. Because of the high altitude, Colorado seems to have more people on oxygen that lower altitudes. Here many of our old coal miners also have Black Lung that requires oxygen.
I'm proud of you and so glad you gave up smoking. I know it is awfully hard to do.njwwcmjy

Rian said...

I'm sorry to hear that. I guess being a mile high you would need some additional help with oxygen. I imagine the Ursula business is booming there.

Debra Spincic said...

Without even one hint, I would have guessed that purse was yours! Actually, I am pretty sure I could have put everyone's purse with the correct person. It has been interesting to see how much we resemble our purses from the information we give on our blogs.

martha in ny said...

I surely would want to be with you in an emergency!

Deborah said...

My "purse' is just really a tote bag where I know I can find whatever I'm looking for, because that's usually where everything ends up, from mail to checkbook. But nowhere near organized.