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50 WAYS NOT TO LEAVE YOUR COLLECTION

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Wissahickon Collection

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Exploring your relationship....

The title is a bit of a parody on Paul Simon's hit song, but my thoughts about keeping the fun in your collecting activities may fit his song's format.

I left active collecting once for about 8 years; on a number of ocassions, collecting has become "stale" with me. The passage of a bit of time usually cures my ills. Recently, I've felt a bit of the "dulls" coming on again, so I decided to make a list of activities to perk-up my collecting desires. Here goes:

-Play with the coins more:

*Bring groupings of coins home from the Safe Deposit Box, and look at them for a few days at a time- then repeat as needed.

*I love organizing things, so I tried grouping coins in a variety of combinations, just to look at them in a somewhat different mindset.

-Use the Registry: Many view it strictly as a competition. I've come to see it as a place to "play".

*Open up new sets just to see if you have any qualifying coins, and if so, how your set would rank. I've done this dozens of times, and deleted the sets within a few minutes. Sometimes its led me to consider collecting in a new area.

*In the last couple of years, I've created a number of Mint Sets from 1837-1937, just for fun to see in what years I had the most coins. Some sets I kept, and some I closed within minutes.

In many instances, I was quite surprised at the number of coins per year. In others, I was amazed that with a variety of denominations in the collection, a given year was totally missing from my entire collection- 1846 is one such year.

This weekend, I combined family history with collecting. I pulled birth dates of ancestors from old documents, and renamed my Mint Sets for family members' birthdates; year of marriage; and year of death.

Not only did it personalize the collection, it also provided a picture of family history- groupings of births, deaths, marriages became quite apparent. I noticed a cluster of years with no activity- hmm, why?

I haven't made 50 ways yet, but I challenge other collectors to share a few interesting, renewing ideas of their own.

One last thought, a couple of months ago, Jackson was lamenting the space limitations' impact on his "Ships" Signature Set. That started me thinking, (always a dangerous thing) and I sent him an E-mail, which I don't think was received.

Here's my idea for Jackson that may increase his collecting "fun".

Create 7 Ship Sets: one for each continent.

-Ships of North America, South America, Africa, Europe, Asia, Australia, Antartica. That last one may be a bit of a challenge.

Your collection "size" problem will be solved.

You can set up a competition as to which set is larger, more complete, prettier, contains better designs, etc.

-Challenge us, your fellow collectors to alert you to any new ship coins which we see, that are not already in your sets. If you acquire that coin, it is named in your set after the "finder"- Let us play with your "boat" coins, too.

I'm starting to feel "charged-up" already!

Here's hoping that we all stay excited about collecting throughout 2009, as well as staying happy and healthy!!

Happy New Year, to all!!!

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