Tuesday, January 13, 2009


In The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, before Aslan came in Narnia it was always winter but never Christmas.

Well, in our house, for the past several years it's been always Christmas and never spring.

I'm talking dishes, of course. I'm a bit of a collector of pretty sets of dishes. We have good china, everyday stoneware, a few place settings of a nicer stoneware free from our honeymoon resort, my butterfly dishes (also a nicer than everyday but not quite gold-edge-bone-china), and my Christmas dishes (Pfaltzgraff's Winterberry). And a few other odds and ends, of course (a set of glass plates, some nice rice bowls, etc). I have two china cabinets—one huge one in our formal living/dining room that displays some of our good china and crystal, and another smaller one in the kitchen that displays either the Winterberry (Christmas), or the butterflies. Our kitchen cabinet shelves are literally sagging under the weight of our everyday dishes. Hey, some women buy shoes or purses. I buy dishes.

Usually I rotate the displays in the kitchen between the butterfly dishes and the Christmas dishes, seasonally. But our house has been stuck in Christmas since before Trystan was born.

Last night, for the first time in years, I swapped out the dishes.

Its kind of a major undertaking, and feeling overwhelmed by the rest of life, I just haven't gotten to it the last couple of years. I have a lot of the Christmas stuff. A lot. More than fits in the one cabinet, so I don't even have everything out on display. I like it that way :) I still have all the boxes for the serving pieces, so I can store them securely on shelves in the basement. My place settings share zippered china protectors with the butterfly dishes. The kids were actually playing well without interference, and were willing to stay away from the kitchen table long enough for me to unload the cabinet and mostly package everything up. The rest was finished after bedtime.

And I played a mean game of tetris to fit all my boxes into the dedicated basement shelves. Ahem, I think my collection has grown a smidge since I last put everything away. I think I need another set of shelves down there...

It feels good to have actually gotten that done. It bothered me for six months last year that I hadn't put away the Christmas dishes. And then for the next six months I justified it that it was closer to Christmas than not, so I should just leave them. It's amazing how getting such small items checked off my mental to-do list can help my mood.

Next on the list: putting away the stray Halloween costume pieces that have been in our laundry room for 4 months.


Amanda said...

You collect dishes like I collect books. :)

Kristi said...

Oh, I collect those too. Hubby's a general packrat, storing away every sort of odd and end he comes across. "We might need it one day".

Me, I prefer sets of things. Hence all the sets of matching dishes with coordinating silverware and glassware. Books all belong to one single "set", and unfortunately, I don't think I'll ever quite collect them all....but that doesn't stop me from trying!

Bethany said...

I know they don't go with your dishes at all, but I saw that Target has a really cute (and uniquely shaped) set of butterfly dishes out right now. I also collect dishes (and have been banned from buying anymore until we know where we're going to live) but I thought I'd pass it along. A person really can't have too many dishes.


Kristi said...

Those are pretty, Bet. They're not the same Lenox pattern, but they're very similar. Must....restrain....self...from...shopping!!!!

I've also been mostly banned from buying more dishes, because of storage space. Did I mention the coffee cups that live in our bedroom closet? For some reason, hubby doesn't like it when I threaten to get rid of his things so that I can make room for more dishes....