I got it out today and washed and rearranged it. I’ll serve my guests on it tonight. It’s pretty and festive. My mother picked it out for me almost 40 years ago. Even though I love it, it’s seldom used.
Most of our dinner parties involve a small army of close relatives. Most of them are on the short side, and aren't very good with china. Sometimes we use the everyday dishes, which are sturdy mostly-matching Correlle. I say sturdy, but I used to say unbreakable. In our family test kitchen we have found it possible to break almost every variety of supposedly unbreakable material.
Truthfully, we don’t really have enough mostly-matching Correlle to serve our small army. We generally use paper goods for even our fanciest family get-togethers. It suits us. We seldom run out of dishes and we have less cleanup. More time to enjoy each other. Less frayed nerves and less exhaustion. We’re not that fancy anyway.
Mother made sure I had beautiful china and a lovely place to store it in. Mom loved parties and she loved fancy things. I appreciate her thoughtfulness. I admire fancy things, but I don’t really crave them like Mom did. In some ways I’m like my mom, but we were cut from different cloth.
Do I own eight sets of matching silverware? I need matching silverware, not really silver of course, to go with the good china. Wait, it's salad at my house. I only need forks. Do I have matching forks for eight? Rummaging in silverware drawer. Six, seven, eight, nine...more than enough. I love abundance.
It will be fun to be fancy tonight with the girls at our annual progressive dinner party. I enjoyed washing the good china and rearranging it in my lovely china closet, as I remembered Mom. Eating on beautiful dishes doesn’t make me worth more. Of that I’m sure.
It’s okay to be different, and it’s okay that I miss my fancy mom.