I've been ruthless with the things I rarely use that are easily replaced if I ever have a notion to need them again.
Some things are neither easily replaced nor easily attained.
When I was in grade eight, my mom decided it was time for me to start my hope chest.
The first thing that needed to be decided was the china pattern.
It wasn't a difficult decision for me and I've never seriously been disappointed with it.
Sweet Violets made by Royal Albert was given to me for birthdays and Christmas.
It wasn't until I was engaged that the table settings really began to accumulate.
By the time we were married I could easily have several couples over for dinner. . .
and we did often.
My sister in law Heidi also collected Sweet Violets and she herself had enough to have several couples over for dinner .. .
and they did.
Then, Gerry and Heidi felt the call to ministry and they moved across the country to go to school. Most of their belongings that they really didn't need were sold and I purchased her place setting of Sweet Violets.
Now. . . we could have a house full of dinner guests .. .
and we did.
Many years later, Gerry and Heidi moved back to our province and when our parents passed away, I decided that Heidi could have my mother's china since she didn't have any of her own.
This worked wonderfully for me.. . .
She had enough china to host large dinner parties .. .
and they did.
We sat at the table with my mom's china .. .
still with family.
but back to our town.
Gerry and Heidi have come back. . .
the china has come back.
Is Heidi a china girl? Well, partly ... but partly not.
She has decided that her new soon to be urban decor will make the china feel a bit odd.
So .. .we had it out. . .(can't you see?)
No, we didn't really. Since the set was large, half of it will go to her daughter,
who will be able to have several couples over for dinner. . .
and the rest came home to be with me.
Mom's china .. .
I washed it. . .and took everything out of my china cabinet and
told the two sets that they have much history together and
they are privileged to be set together.
I think mom would be happy with the arrangement.
When I was perhaps just born, my mom got her first dish set.
This was our company set. Not real fine china ..
but china. .
I remember setting the table for company many times with this simple pink rose dish set.
She was so careful with it. It was her best and she hoped it would last her many years.
Well, it did.
When she passed away, I took it home.
She would have never parted with it.
She was sentimental. . .does that surprise you?
She hadn't started collecting a china set in grade 8.
She never knew my mom. . . .but I tell her stories of her. . .often.
She listens and understands my sentimentality.
These dishes will never end up at the local thrift shop. . .don't bother going to check.
Perhaps, one day Bea will begin to collect her own china pattern,
but for now, she was happy to take home the pink rose dishes.
I feel good that it has a home.