Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Tea Cups

We're coming up on another anniversary of my grandmother's death...an "occasion" I won't be celebrating, I'm sure you'll understand. It's been 20 years, so I'm getting right up to that point where I've lived without her longer than I lived with her. Which should make me terribly sad, but honestly, it makes me crazy happy...I just realized when I wrote that sentence out that she's still in my heart, all this time, she's still with me. I talk to her, think about her, wonder what she would have thought about my kids (she would have found them to be adorable, in case you were wondering).

My mom gave me two things that were hers. The first is a platinum and diamond watch, which sounds like a lot of look, but it is so old and beautiful, so delicate. It's made by Hamilton, shaped into leaves, and has a rectangular face. My guess is that it is from the...40s? Here, forget it, I'll take a picture:

She split the tea cup collection with her sister, and then split her share with me, so I also have this, which is all good:

Several sets, like this one, have the cup and saucer plus their own matching cream and sugar. Oh, the sweetness. Could you just swoon?

They are all unique, and they're all made in England. The bottoms say either "Royal Albert" china, or "Fine Bone" china. I have always loved this little fellow, with his matching salt and pepper shaker, perched on their own precious little tray. Oh gosh. These make me so happy!

A couple of weeks ago, I got the idea to hang some of them in the kitchen, using one of "those things". Or, as I said when I called my mom, "What do you call those things, they have hooks and they're stretchy, like they stretch out like an accordion but you hang them on your wall? Aunt Barbara had one?" Which led to me these on ebay. The price is right, but the shipping was as much as the item in some cases, so I thought I'd wait on it.

Until just a few days ago, when I dropped Scotty off at my mom's house and drove past her neighbor's house...the one who has "free" stuff on the side of the road? But all the time? Because he doesn't want to bother taking it to the dump? As an example: There were three broken plastic milk crates and a broken lampshade against the fence, with a sign marked "free". So naturally, I'm used to not looking as I drive by, but as my eyes skipped across...I saw this on top of the second broken crate:

It's perfect! My friend Marjan, who loves her bible, would probably say, "Seek and ye shall receive" and my friend Donna, who loves her Oprah, would probably say, "You put it out into the universe, and it came to you", but I'm just little old me, so I said, "Lucky day!" and grabbed it.

This weekend I washed the cups and got ready for the big display. I considered painting the rack, but then thought there was something so sweet and retro about it. Maybe I'll paint it later?

Yes. The delicate tea cups, from the 1950s, don't fit on the sturdy nubs, from the 1970s. Such a good idea! Sadly, not good enough. I'll keep thinking, but if you have anything to offer, now would be a good time.


  1. Mia, good morning. I'm at work checking out your blog (shhhh!). Hope you're going to use them and not just show them. Because when you use them you'll think of your grandmother. Kelly and I received a set of china which was my dad's moms. The set was still in the box- never used. Now, when we use them I always think of my grandma Locke. Moose

  2. You know, Moose, it's funny you mention it... when my Grandma Dot owned these tea cups, they stayed wrapped up and in her dining room buffet. When my mom and her sister were going through them, there were some they had forgotten about completely! I swore when I got them (and in general, not just about tea cups, but everything I have) that I would not save them "for good". And I do! I use them! So, there's a price to pay, of course...I've broken the handle off one. :( But that's what glue is for, I say! It's not like I'm trying to keep them "mint" for selling on ebay!

  3. Mia, Look in the shabby chic area of ebay for a shelf with hooks. You would be surprised what good things they have. I have enjoyed your blog.