Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Some of my most cherished belongings are items handed down to me from others whom I am most fond of such as my great-grandmother, Dolly. Dolly came from a large family of hard workers. She was born in Oklahoma to day laborers, the middle of thirteen children, four of which were two sets of twins.
My great-grandmother was the most loving person I knew growing up. She was my comfort and at one point in my life even my mother. When I lived with my father when I was very young, she rescued me from that dreadful place after I caught pneumonia. I remember it was cold and snowing outside and that she led me to her warm car where she took me back to her home. I lived with her for a few months. It was one of the most happiest times of my childhood. I absolutely adored my great-grandmother and wanted to live with her forever.
My great-grandmother enjoyed the simple things in life. She played house with me. She fashioned all my Barbie doll clothes with her sewing machine. She set the oscillating sprinkler out for me to play in when it was warm outdoors. She took me to the farmers market to buy cantaloupe. She cooked the best fried eggs and toast for breakfast. She made the best banana pudding. In fact, I make my banana pudding the same as she did to this day.
Some of my most beloved recollections of my great-grandmother included the family sitting together at Thanksgiving at my Grandma Dolly's home and eating off her finest china plates--elegant white dishes with a simple silver wheat pattern. Indeed, my consideration for purchasing pure white dishes for college stemmed from my great-grandmother's choice in dinnerware. I was equally happy when I got married that one of my wedding gifts was a new pure white dinnerware set with a clean raised acorn emboss.
Over the past few years that I have owned my great-grandmother's china which was passed down to me, I have searched the internet trying to find peices of her Fukagawa Arita Pattern No. 928. I've added a few peices to complete her twelve peice setting and eventually I will finish it. It is my way to honor my great-grandmother and to show appreciation to her since I was never able to show or tell her how much I loved her as she passed away when I was just eight.
They may be just dishes to someone else, but for me my Grandma Dolly's dishes are symbolic of the simple things in life that need to be cherished and remembered. For me, Grandma Dolly's dishes are adulation of both memories past and present--an admonition to foster good memories with the ones I treasure.
What I'm Talkin' About: Family History