My mother was cleaning her basement and found 3 boxes of my old stuff. They were full of pictures, cards, and letters all from when I was much younger. All my grade school pictures and awards, some books my Aunt got me in pre school, my piggy bank which was actually an owl, 2 wax dinosaurs that we made when we visited the museum of science and industry, my high school diploma and cap, my hat and name tag from my first job, and some school work that apparently I thought I might like to look at in the future. There is a copy of my school records, My play scripts, my psats, my Presidential Fitness badges (that made me laugh looking at me now!) my yearbooks, etc.... It has all been sitting in her basement for 18 (ish) years. I think it must have been put in storage around the time I was 24 or so from the looks of what's in there.
What I was disturbed about was how much I had forgotten. There are letters in there from people I don't remember talking about stuff I don't remember doing. There are pictures of things that seemed so important at the time, but now, if it wasn't for the pictures I wouldn't have a single recollection of.
What has made me happiest is that there are letters from my grandparents. My grandparents have all passed away now, one set almost 12 years ago, and my other set in the last 3 years. There are cards and letters and even some pictures. I had forgotten that my grandmother used to send me money (secretly) and tell me to stay out of the bars. She would always write that in big capital letters with a smiley face. I think she knew I ignored that little piece of advice.