She Said – He Said: Displaying Stuff

Men and women are different, there’s no doubt about that. Although we are equal in God’s eyes we are definitely not created equally. There’s something that happens early in the womb–testosterone floods the male brain–and that changes him forever. From then on we think differently, act differently…and collect things differently.*

Vicki: We have too many mugs. We need to get rid of some.
Du: I like all those mugs. I want to display them all.
Vicki: (biting tongue and lip) Uh, honey, we don’t even use all those mugs, why would you want to display them?
Du: Because they’re all cool. They all have special meaning.
Vicki: Fine, you can display them at work.
Du: (shaking head and smiling) I want to display them here, at home, on a mug tree.
Vicki: (not knowing whether to laugh or cry) Whhhaaaa? Wha? What? A mug tree? In this house? Never.
Du: Why not? It will be cool.
Vicki: It will be a cool way for Ashlyn to break all of the mugs and one more cool thing that I have to dust.
Du: I want a mug tree.


You can probably guess that the conversation hasn’t gone beyond this. And let me clarify what this mug tree would look like. It wouldn’t be one of those beech woody things that six or eight mugs would hang on. Du has in mind this floor to ceiling peg pole where mugs galore would reside. Like a truck stop souvenir shop. I truly hope Du is joking because we’ve been striving to get rid of clutter. Not display the clutter in a countrified-hazardous-where the crap would we put it-new way. Are you being defiant and hard headed? Funny? Please? We only have so much room in the house and we’ve pretty much filled it. And by Du’s own desire (in which I totally agree) we’re getting rid of a lot of the things that sat on the horizontal surfaces around the house. So, what’s up with wanting to take mugs out of the cabinet, nicely hidden and put away, and displaying them in broad daylight where cats, kids and Mommy’s hips will inevitably destroy most of them. Wait a minute. He’s on to something…


After throwing away my cub scout and boy scout uniforms, my high school letterman’s jacket, our shot glasses from all over Europe, I finally tell Vicki, whhooooaaaa, partner. I say that those types of things have memories for me and it helps me remember people and events in my life. Vicki says pictures are what can help us recall things. This after she has stopped doing hardcopy scrapbooks and is “possibly” going to start digital scrapbooking at some point (read this as the next time I’m deployed). OK, so somehow we’ve gone from having a few trinkets around the house on shelves or in boxes that will occasionally remind us of past momentous events in our life to a couple of online pictures? I told Vicki that as much as I like pictures, I love the reminders from touristy shops (things I can actually see and hold).

Since I’m a big coffee drinker, I have picked up a few coffee mugs recently. I got one at the Space Shuttle Atlantis launch (the only one I’ve ever been to and one of the last shuttle launches ever) that says “Failure is not an Option”. Now how cool is that around the office? Same with the Truman library I visited recently. The mug from there says, “If you can’t stand the heat, then get out of the kitchen.”  Each Friday afternoon, I take my coffee cup home to wash and bring a new coffee cup in the following Monday. I rotate which one it is (my Georgia Tech mug that Reagan/Ashlyn bought me, my mugs from previous jobs, etc) It’s not about the mug tree. It’s that Vicki wants me to stop getting mugs altogether. I’m glad that pictures are enough for her. For me, I need a memento, so what’s wrong with a mug? Come on ladies, show me a little love on this one — Vicki will not hold it against you 🙂


There you have it. Our first S/He Said. We’ve been wanting to do something like this for a while but couldn’t agree what “issue” should be first. What do we do? Keep the mugs in the cabinet (where they belong)? Or hang them on a mug tree (for the visual person who likes memories)? Your answers do not obligate us to follow a certain course of action. This, in no way, is a democratic blog.

Published by NotSoSAHM

I'm a photographer and homeschooler Dream = travel blogger. We move around every couple of years. That's fine, I love seeing different parts of our great country and the world. Great things: Jesus, traveling, photography, eating, sewing, scrapbooking, reading, shopping...not necessarily in that order.

29 thoughts on “She Said – He Said: Displaying Stuff

  1. ooh, that’s tough. well it is now that ‘he said.’ otherwise, it would have been easy: keep them in the cabinet, or better yet toss them. but, since someone has taken the time to so eloquently present his point of view, i get it. here’s my suggestion: get all the mugs you want, and display your current favorite (or two or three) on a shelf or other location that is out of the way, but visible.

    i like ‘he said, she said.’ i might borrow it for easycheese, if that’s alright.

  2. Um, V, I hate to point this out but you have a man who is sentimental about something that is not auto-related! Rare as hen’s teeth. Go with it.

    I’d balk at the floor-to-ceiling model, but a small mug tree — you could live with that — in a safe location? those could represent the “mugs of the month” while the remainder of the collection lives blissfully in the cabinet.

  3. I LOVE the floor to ceiling model! Make it unique and totally kitchy-no REALLY-not only will you have a great “he said-she said” story for guests-but the rest of your house will look that much more elegant! I think a row of pegs at up-high -but-not-ceiling-wall-border height around a home office would be cool-more interest than a border and with classy wood molding behind them it would look good and be out of the way– It’s really not that big of a thing in the scheme of things-and I am SURE he will find a way to SHOW HIS GRATITUDE 😉 Why not pick a room other than the kitchen for display so it doesn’t feel so much like your personal turf being encroached on-then you get happy hubby and another empty cupboard! Feel lucky girl-you never have to wonder what to give the guy! He likes MUGS! Check out created by and upload the girls’ art and they will melt it onto a ceramic mug for him!

  4. Um, ok, where’s the female support and love I’m supposed to be feeling on *my* blog people? Du is sitting next to me pumping his fist and saying after he read’s each comment, “I like Kelly! I like Nicole! I like Dandelionmom! Yeah!!!”

    Kelly: great idea! He could display his current favorites at his office. Except, for this next year he’s not going to have a work office. So he’d have to display them at home somewhere. *His* side of the bathroom sink might work.

    Nicole: mug trees–I guess it wouldn’t be so bad. Maybe on one of his shelves in the closet… If you DIY one for me I’ll gladly display it though.

    Dandelionmom: You’re going nuts on me. Perhaps it’s that Kambucha thing 😉 The ceiling border thing is an option, but I’m afraid it would just turn into a spider apartment complex. I do like the gratitude part though. He would owe me big if I allowed a mug pole.

  5. I have the same problem in my home. Andrew LOVES his coffee mugs. When we moved last, Andrew went through his collection and agreed to toss the ones that he never used, didn’t really care about, or had two of. In the end I think he trashed two out of the twenty (not including the mugs that match my dishes) that we had, but I appreciated his efforts. What I have now done is sort of a rotating system. I put four or five of his mugs in the cabinet with my regular mugs and the rest go on a high out-of-the-way shelf. About once a month I trade the mugs so that he eventually gets to see all of his collection and I don’t have to deal with an over-flowing cabinet. I agree with you, Vicki. Mug trees are TACKY!!! I refuse to have one in my house. I don’t live in a trailer, so I’m not going to decorate like I live in one. If you don’t have an out of the way shelf, you could store the extra mugs in a box in the garage until time to swap.

  6. Now we’re talking! I’m getting some luvin!

    Melisa: *LOVING* the garage idea. I might have to work on that one.

    Angie: You mentioned the garage too. You girls are clever! I agree with you about mug trees. But I reserve the right to change my mind if a cute one comes my way.

  7. Garage? There is absolutely no room in there. And if you box them up, they surely will not be rotated through every few weeks. More like, “it’s time to move, what’s in this box?”
    I might be “convinced” to compromise to Angie’s idea. Vicki?

  8. Sorry, Du, but it sounds like you’re having a Michael Scot moment (The Office). A giant mug tree? Can’t you just picture this in Michael’s office, and he would spend all day rotating the coffee cups? Then Dwight would come in and knock them all over by accident?

    Do you also have a World’s Greatest Boss mug–that you bought yourself? 🙂

    I’m with Vickie. Take the ones you really like to work, and lets get rid of the rest.

  9. I love Jaci! I love Jaci! I love Jaci! And Melisa and Angie too.

    Jaci: We *love* the office so your references aren’t lost on us 🙂

    Du: I think the garage is the perfect idea since you’re not going to have an office (outside of this house) this year. Love you!

  10. Jaci – that’s love? Game over. We were having a friendly game when bam, the elbows start flying. Warehouse – you work on Saturday!

    I told Vicki I wouldn’t get a fair shake from the girls. OK, well maybe I did from Kelly, Nicole, dandelionmom but from Angie and Jaci – no sir. Out and out favoritism.

    Why, yes. I do have a World’s Greatest Boss mug. My employees (or me) got it last year 🙂

  11. OK–How about a classy small Barrister’s bookcase-maybe back-to-back with a comfy (read FAT) chair or 2 of them as a table-type unit behind a sofa-or even as a free standing table back-to-back with each other-lovely place to display-spider free and allowing a bit of personal taste and input for the man of the house as well.

    I still say throw the guy a bone! Plus-I hear he’s real cuuuute when he pouts! 😀

    Look the house over and see who has the most influence everywhere-it’s ONE collection for Pete’s sake! Sentimental guys who like to hang on things are good to have around when we start adding to our own wrinkle/grey hair/orthepedic shoe collections.
    I’m jest sayin! 😉

    I gotchyer back Du-we hoarders…I mean collectors need to stick together! Dontcha have a ratty old sweatshirt you can offer to toss instead? as a bargaining chip?

  12. Dandelionmom: don’t get me started on his tshirt collection. That may just be another S/He Said topic.

    Toni: Toni! Toni? Why?!? You gave me an award. I professed my admiration to you today. And now this!?! Please tell me you’re kidding! We’re talking about mugs here, not shoes, not purses. Mugs… 😉

  13. No mug tree. Of any size, shape, or color. Please.

    And for the record, I heart Du. Officially taking on the role of his fan club president…so now I’m managing your husband and youngest daughter. I need a MUG for that.

  14. Okay Vicki I send my sincerest apologies and will grovel at your feet, I will change my vote… I only think mug trees are cool if you live in a log cabin (you dont’ live in one do you, if so they are not cool at all) and shame on du for even suggesting them. I lost my sanity for a moment.

  15. I can TOTALLY fix the t-shirt prob!! We put some lightweight fusible on the back and cut out the image in a square–strips of flannel in between and as the back..viola! a blanket throw that saves those sentimental things AND is useful and very personal.–14″ squares work for big men’s ones-12 make a respectable throw!

    You will never solve the dilema-you’re having tooo much fun with it!

    FYI-My railroad man comes home with RR “memorabilia” (read pieces of taconite that fell off a car, old spikes,a brick!,old ink? bottles)–I got him a lovely children’s sand pail to keep all his findings in-it’s on his dresser-next to the huge mason jar of misc hardware I find through the house and don’t know if it is OK to pitch!

  16. Dandelionmom: you rock! You check with your husband before pitching his things.

    Toni…or should I say Benedict Arnold. Is your vote that cheap?

    Leigh Anne: it’s OK to disagree on the mug tree, especially since you heart me 🙂

    Vicki: you bring up my T-shirt collection? It has memories of us written all over them. I hate to throw any of them away 😦 Love you 🙂

  17. Since you’re leaning toward the garage — why not take some old hubcaps and put some doll pins through them and hang those in the garage to display the mugs!

    Cheap and easy project, keeping with theme, provides masculine display option …

  18. Nicole: Awesome idea! Du actually does have three, not four, but only three hubcaps that he’s keeping around just in case one of the ones already on the car falls off. So, in the mean time they can become mug holders! Love it.

    Du: Per Dandelionmom’s guidance I will be cutting up all your tshirts next week. This ended up being a great post!

  19. Now that sounded a lot like a few conversations that have happened in this house. Du – stand your ground! 🙂

    I wish I had when it came time to get rid of my Hard Rock Cafe collection…when we moved to San Antonio, Heidi said the glasses would have looked good over the kitchen cabinets…rattza fracka…

  20. I’m stalking an older post here so it could very well be already decided but please. No mug tree. That’s a ridiculous thing to have anywhere in your house. Well, at least till you’re an OLDMAN and the grandkids all need their own mug when they come over…and you have ike 20 grandkids.

    uh-uh. Put your foot down wife–or just have those hips knock a mug a day down shattering to the floor.

  21. My vote is purge and store… but then again I’m in an odd impending New Year mode that’s spurring me to both stock up and declutter at the same time.

  22. #1 – have him pick his top 7 favorites, and then chuck the rest.

    #2 – in the future – collect Christmas ornaments from places you want to remember… then you get them out at christmas and can smile about the memory, but it’s not taking up room all year.

  23. visiting from your very own BPOTW. I personally have to agree and favor HE !! i am a mug collector myself ( but sadly my friends have created records in breaking them as often i get new ones 😦 ) So, what i was saying is… a mug tree !! whoa !! what an idea… i will definitely have it some day when i settle …

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