Sunday, August 10, 2014

No Once and For All

My plates and glasses and bowls and coffee cups were all purchased at garage sales. Nothing matched, and that's the way I liked it. There was variety.

But someday, I thought, someday I am going to find a set of dishes that I fall in love with, and I'll buy them.

I never did fall in love with a set of dishes. At least, not love at first sight.

Instead my mother and sisters gifted me over the years with dishes from Princess House, which I thought so ridiculously expensive that I wouldn't buy them myself. For example, a set of four highball glasses is $50, and shipping them would add another $15 to the bill. Who can afford that? Hmph. I mean, why would you when you could spend 50 cents at a garage sale and take home half a dozen?

However, I ended up with a bit of a collection since my sister Karen was a rep for PH and when there were good sales, I'd look at the catalogues and purchase a set of crystal wine glasses or coffee mugs or something.

When Mom was living with terminal cancer in 2004/5 and I moved with my boys to Kelowna to be with her, we rented a suite that came complete with dishes. However, the first time I poured white wine into the glass provided by the rental kitchen, I was shocked at the difference in quality and esthetics between your everyday wine glass and the crystal goblets I had left back at home. This thing I was drinking out of was no beautiful object; it was functional, but not beautiful, and back home I had grown accustomed to holding something beautiful in my hand.

I had been spoiled.

When I turned 50 my sisters gave me a whack of money to spend, and I used it to purchase two or three sets of matching plates, side dishes, serving bowls and plates, casseroles and so on. Everything I could possibly want and was ordinarily too cheap to buy, I could now afford, and so I did.

Once at a garage sale I picked up and brought home a ceramic cereal bowl that appealed to me. But when I set it in the kitchen cupboard alongside my PH cereal bowls, it looked shabby and ugly in comparison. I gave it to the dog.

We've lived in this house here at Golden Grain Farm for about five years without livingroom or kitchen curtains. They're not really needed when no one can see in your windows, so there was no rush, but I figured someday I'd shop for curtains I really, really liked and then I'd buy them. I watched the Sears catalogues that came out, but never went to the city to look; I don't enjoy shopping and don't do it unless I need to.

And then this winter I thought, if I wait till I make a trip to the city look for curtains I can fall in love with, we will never have any. And you know what, Kathy? I said to myself. It's not brain surgery I'm doing here; mediocre curtains can be replaced. I can hang any old set of curtains up on that picture window and, if one day I come across a pair I love, I can buy them and pass along the old ones. Meanwhile we'll have curtains to close if we want to watch TV in the afternoon or keep the cold out in the winter, and the living room will feel cosy and complete.

I ordered some from the catalogue. They still aren't hung, nor are the rods I ordered to hang them on. But they're here.

Don't wait and wait and wait for that "someday" in order to find that perfect thing. As we all know, that someday may never come.

If you are happy with your eclectic collection of kitchenware, that's okay too. I've been there. It's just that I have inadvertently, without intending to, fallen in love with my Princess House dishes. They are actually a pleasure to wash, dry, and put away, because they are, to my mind, somewhat lovely (as dishes go).

Maybe I'll fall in love with these curtains, if they ever get hung.

It's the same with jewelry. I can rarely find anything fabulous enough to buy, and don't get excited when jewelry is given to me, but after wearing it for a while become quite enamoured of it.

There may be no point to this entry, but I won't wait till it has a perfectly good reason for being. It probably never will. You can have it right now.