80: This Little Piggy Came Home

80: This Little Piggy Came Home

From Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Joy of Less


This Little Piggy Came Home

Those gifts are ever more precious which the giver has made precious.


A couple of years ago my husband and I decided to get new living room furniture. It was a huge decision. We were still using the same furnishings we had purchased twenty-one years before when our house was built. In fact, everything was the same — same pictures on the wall, same curtains, and the same clutter.

Our old décor was a country/farmhouse style, with a big emphasis on pigs, my favorite farm animal. I had spent years collecting anything that had to do with pigs, and people gave me pig gifts as well. We had everything from wall hangings to figurines, dishes, stuffed animals, stationery, and even Christmas ornaments. There were pigs everywhere.

We loved our new furniture but it made everything else in our home look dated. I decided we would have to update other items as well so I started removing things that didn’t match our new décor, including a lot of pig items.

I tried to stash everything in the attic, but my husband convinced me that we should have a yard sale or take it all to Goodwill. So, we brought the boxes down and stacked them in the garage. And there they sat, in spite of my good intentions. There would be a yard sale one day.”

I never did have a yard sale but I eventually sorted through the boxes again and started giving things away. I gave stuffed pigs to my grandchildren and a local women’s shelter. Some of the knick-knacks and kitchen items went to a thrift store. I was happy that others might enjoy our old things that had been hidden away in boxes for so long.

Then our church announced a yard sale. I still had one box of things that I had decided to keep, but I decided that I could find one thing in there to contribute to the church. After much deliberation, I chose a blue pig planter that had sat on a shelf above our couch for twenty-one years.

The afternoon of the sale I returned home from a meeting and started doing my weekend chores. My husband walked in, smiling. “I’ve got a surprise for you,” he announced.

I quickly unwrapped the unexpected gift.

For a moment I could only stare in disbelief when I saw what it was. It was blue. It was a pig. It was a planter. It was the blue pig planter I had just donated to the church sale.

“Did you stop by the church on your way home?” I asked.

Yes indeed! He had spotted the pig planter and thought it looked like something I would like. What’s more, he had paid three dollars for it.

“That’s the one thing I donated to them!” I exclaimed. “Didn’t you recognize it as an old relic of ours? After all, it sat on a shelf in our living room for the last twenty-one years!”

Needless to say, my husband was a bit embarrassed but we couldn’t help but laugh!

Although this little pig no longer matched our décor I decided to keep it by the kitchen sink. It is just right for holding scouring pads, a dishcloth, and a unique memory.

When my children found out about their dad’s special “gift” to me they practically rolled with laughter. They now joke about who should inherit the pig and say they will fight over it for sure.

I doubt that, but I do think this little piggy is home to stay.

~Carol Emmons Hartsoe


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