So, yesterday I was talking with my Martha Stewart friend at work via email (we work in a "silence is golden" office) about my need for some home decorating advise. She said her heart rate increased and her reply to my email request for assistance was in large, teal colored font so I know she's on my team now. I was telling her how I wanted to buy some things to make a nice table for my son & wife's visit, including perhaps some new dinner & dessert plates. And, then she asked the question that changed my life. She asked if I was going to buy everyday dinnerware or something more for harvest or like China. China? Oh crap, I have China! I FORGOT I HAVE CHINA.
When my mom died 9 years ago, it took my dad a year or two to start gifting some of mom's treasures to my sister and me. On one summer trip to North Pole, Alaska, he returned with a large tote full of one of mom's sets of China (she had 2 sets). I got the set I wanted and because we were living in such a small space in AZ, I just left it in the tote. After we moved to our current home, I unpacked it all, washed it and placed it up in this really awesome showcase shelving that has glass doors which separates my kitchen from the dining room. What a revelation to remember that I have China. It made me giddy just like my friend was when I asked her to help me with some decorating tips. Now, I have a starting point for a beautiful table setting.
The China was a gift my dad gave to my mom from one of his tours while he was in the Navy. My dad served in the Korean war and I think he spent some time in Japan and Korea, although please don't quote me. I'll have to do some inquiring the next time I talk to him. He doesn't talk about it much, not because he was traumatized, but I think because it was a really long time ago. When he does talk about it, he tells of the bloated bodies that were washed up on shore. He may tell other parts of his story but that's truly the only part I ever remember. (I should have gone into forensics ~ I'm always far too interested in morbid things.) The China. Yeah, I'll have to ask dad more about the story of the China ...
The China is now my China. I really love it and it honestly just now made me get a big lump in my throat and tears in my eyes thinking about it. It's very beautiful, simple, strong but delicate, very much like mom. She only used it a handful of times that I can remember. She got it out on Thanksgiving and Christmas and the rest of the time it was hidden away. It has sweet, little pink roses and a tiny gold ring around the edges. I remember thinking we were really living large when we got the China out. It was "Made in Japan". Whew, so happy it wasn't made in China. I don't really have anything against the Chinese, I just don't like their cheap crap.
I know it will make my dad happy that I'm using the China. I wish I would have thought of it a couple of weeks ago when he and Nancy were here. I would have served the chicken tortilla soup in the China soup bowls and perhaps I would have heard stories about the China and his tour in Korea and Japan.
As I'm proof reading this post, I know I've capitalized China probably incorrectly but I've done so because it has meaning to me and the capitalization is so the reader will know this is not just any old set of dishes. It's "The China". love, Susan