I started unwrapping my mom's bone china today, to ascertain its condition. Sell it, I will. As I'd hoped, every piece was still intact. I hadn't unwrapped it since the day the movers wrapped it after she died in 1998. It's been moved five times since then.
We lived in Japan for a couple years when I was a kid and my mother dragged me along when she bought this set of eight, five-piece place settings with completer pieces directly from the Mikasa factory. At the same time, she bought my sister a similar set of bone china, except that my sister's china is a conservative white-on-white design with a platinum band around the edge.
I asked her why *I* didn't get my own pattern--the proper thing for a young southern lady--and mother looked at me.
I don't think you're going to be a china kind of person.
I didn't understand that then. But I do now.
My sister was a cheerleader, and then a cheerleader mom. Her china, rarely used, sits behind sparkling glass doors in a beautiful, cherry-wood china cabinet, which is in a formal dining room with a sparkling chandelier, a room also rarely used. Her tasteful home is full of matching cherry furniture. It looks to be right out of Southern Living magazine. It's beautiful to look at.
My sister sings in the church choir, and goes for walks. She has a nice life. A china kind of life. My sister is a china kind of person.
FiestaWare is in our kitchen cabinet; it is both our everyday and special occasion dishes. We bought it in as many different colors as they had that day. I don't have a formal dining room. I do have some matching mexican talavera pottery, though, that includes a giant talavera lizard that Sweet Baboo carried over the border when we walked over, bought it, and walked back. It's very cool.
Our home is filled with the things that came from our life. Everything has a story. Walk in our home, and you'll notice that our life, like our dishes, is not something we just look at and never use. Step through our back door, and you step between two racks full of trail running shoes, hiking shoes, running shoes, and gardening shoes.
I repacked the china carefully. It will go to a consignment shop. Hopefully a china kind of person will treasure it. It has no meaning for me. Throughout my childhood, it sat in a beautiful cabinet and behind glass doors and was rarely used. Always waiting for the right, special moment, until there were no more moments to wait for.
That's not how I live my life. That's not how I want my life to be.
Because, I'm not a china kind of person.