Tuesday, 19 April 2016

Coffee morning.

As usual it was our mid-week gathering for coffee in our favourite Coffee  House this morning.   There were only three of us but good company, pleasant conversation and a jolly good cup of coffee - what could be better?   The owner of the cafe is a real connoisseur of coffee and keeps a lot of different blends.   Through trial and error I now always have a cafetiere of Etheopian which is a rich but mild coffee.

 We talked about our personal 'treasures' - not necessarily
worth a lot of money but precious to us for some particular reason.   Friend C spoke of a small vase given to her by an old lady when C was ten years old; of no monetary value and of course in the future, when C is gone, totally meaningless to anyone else.  I have similar things which I value for their memories.

For my first wedding in 1952 (!!) a brother of my mother's,
who was a very good embroiderer embroidered us a tablecloth as a wedding present.   I have it still - cream high qualiy cotton with an edging of cut-out ivy leaves worked in a deep coffee colour.   I never use it but would not part with it for the world.

I don't think possessions are all that important and yet there are things which hold memories - and memories are very important.   Are they important to you - and if so, how do you hold on to them?   Do you remember through small (or large) possessions, or do you have another method.  I would be really interested to hear your views.
 

23 comments:

Librarian said...

What an interesting topic! I wonder why you never use the tablecloth? It sounds beautiful.

Thinking about possessions is all the more poignant for me right now as I am in the middle of my room-swapping-and-redecorating project here, and most of my possessions are somewhere in the flat where they usually are not. Everything has to be moved from one room to the other, and the other way round; my Third Room (not part of the swapping) is full to the brim with pieces of furniture, books, clothes and the like - in short, with possessions.
I already know that I won't put everything back into the cupboards and on the shelves; this ia a great occasion to sort out stuff that I don't want/need any longer.

Generally, I like to have clean empty spaces with not much stuff on or in them. But of course, things have a tendency to collect themselves. Some of them I treasure a lot for their immaterial value. They have either been given to me by someone I love, or are full of memories/family history, or both.

Joanne Noragon said...

My mother and her mother were exquisite needle workers. I had left one such tablecloth as you describe, done by my mother. In downsizing, I decided to consign it to a thrift shop, but my oldest daughter wanted it. I asked her what she would do with it and she said probably store it forever, as I had done, and look at it and admire it twice a year. I gave my grandmother's engagement ring to that daughter, too. The six prong setting is impracticable; my grandmother never wore it and I wore it seldom. But that daughter will treasure it. She wears her other grandmother's engagement ring as her own and her husband's grandfather's wedding band as her wedding band.

angryparsnip said...

Joanne what a lovely daughter to treasure these family connections..
Everything that I had from my mother was burned in a wildfire that destroyed my home. Except the Bible that was my Mums.
There are 3 old photos, 1 dried flower and several prayer card from my Grandfathers and Grandmother funeral.
I treasure it very much as it is the only thing I have that was part of her history and now mine.

cheers, parsnip

Terry and Linda said...

I am over loaded with stuff...for I can't get rid of them because of the memories!

Sigh!

Linda

Simon Douglas Thompson said...

I'm strange I'm not sentimental about objects, but hate throwing anything away.

John Gray said...

I have all of my mothers embroidered tablecloths we se the for the flower show tea tables

donna baker said...

Since my mother died when I was 17, I got nothing of hers or my family's, so as an adult, I feathered my nest with many collections. But now, as I've reached a certain age, I am giving away or selling most things. My kids get what they want and much of the rest is going. I might regret some things, but I can't take it with me and don't want all the closets, drawers and cabinets nor the house full. Guess I am not very sentimental.

Penny said...

I seem to be the repository of all the family heirlooms, and just plain stuff. I love them all but what next? If we ever have to move, help.

Dawn McHugh said...

I love boxes of all sorts and have a collection of them it started with a little box that my granny gave me she had decorated it with seashells that she found on the beach, friends give me boxes as gifts too they all hold memories of friends or places

Gerry Snape said...

All the adult women in the family in Belfast were big into embroidery...linen and all that...so I have or had beautifully worked tablecloths...I say had as the daughter has taken many for the photographs in her two cake books...mum would be chuffed!

Wilma said...

We got rid of 75% of our belongings when we sold our house in the US and moved to Belize. We unloaded lots of baggage and crap. Some things that we kept are still in storage in the US and I will rejoice when we can bring them down here - some inexpensive but lovely crystal with a bamboo motif that my parents bought at the Post Exchange when my dad (and therefore all of us) was stationed on Okinawa in the late 50s, hand knotted rugs my husband and I collected over the years, various bits and pieces from days gone by. Very little has significant monetary value, but all are rich in memories. They will be in daily use because the memories give me such pleasure. Like the words in the Tracy Chapman song "If not now, when?"

Mac n' Janet said...

I have very little from my Mother, but a number of crocheted items from my Mother-in-law that I treasure.

Pondside said...

Four years ago, before my mother's mind was lost to Alzheimer's, she asked me if there was anything I'd like to have from her kitchen. I knew right away that I'd like to have the red and white transferware pitcher. My mother, a child of the war years, always made powdered milk. We all hated it. She'd make it and serve it from the pitcher. It was such a big part of my childhood. I keep it on the kitchen windowsill so that I can see it every day.

Coppa's girl said...

The last time we moved house, we downsized, so threw, or gave, many things away - and just kept practical things. In the sixteen years since moving here, I've involved myself in many new hobbies and crafts and find that once again the house is bursting with boxes and items kept in the unlikely event they may prove useful in the future. I'm determined to rid us of everything we really don't need and haven't used for years, but it's a slow process. Sadly, there is actually very little that has any sentimental value, so it should be an easy task.

Maria said...

My husband inherited a beautiful grandfather's clock when his 94 year old father passed away 10 years ago, and the clock belonged to his father before him. My husband mechanically winds up the clock every Saturday morning, just like his father and grandfather did before him. The clock has been ticking, non stop, for over a 100 years. My son will inherit it. Greetings Maria xxp

Rachel said...

I have a hat I bought in 1974 which means a lot to me and it goes on travels with me although I would probably only wear it in Siberia as it is a double layered mountaining hat. Apart from that I value memories of days gone by more than anything else and have nothing of sentimental value.

The Weaver of Grass said...

My goodness me - what memories you have given us above from Rachel with her hat, to John with those tablecloths (I love the idea that they are used for the village show).
The clock which has been wound up every Saturday morning for a hundred years. It seems that some of us are hoarders and some prune carefully. The farmer and I always bring back some memento from our holidays - always something cheap but with a happy memory. I expect they will all go the saleroom one day. Our local Auction House has frequent sales and I often go with a friend to look on a viewing day. There are boxes full of somebodies 'treasures'.

Heather said...

I have several precious items belonging to past members of my family. One of the most dear to me is my grandmother's rug hook, much used and bent and the hook is nearly worn away so it is totally valueless and useless, but I love it. She gave me some Victorian 'Fairings' which I also love but have no value.
I have a few paintings done by an aunt - of no interest or value to anyone else. Tablecloths embroidered by my mother and two crocheted blankets made by another aunt, and we haven't touched on holiday souvenirs or books yet!

coffeeontheporchwithme said...

After having to clean out the family home with my sister, when my mother could no longer be on her own at home, I am determined to not leave my own children with such an onorous (sp?) task. My father had already passed away, and my mother was also keeping items from when her own mother died. As well, there were drawers stuffed with cards, bits and pieces, old recipes, china cabinets of unused plates and teapots, closets filled with clothes purchased on sale, three of the same kind, all different colours...
Each of us four children decided what was important to us. (Art work painted by my aunt, a couple of special momentos, etc), but in the end, it all just got stored here, still not used. I think photographs are the most precious to me, just having a record of what people and their homes looked like many years ago. What is now more important to me is having my home organized and clutter free, not a storage unit, but unfortunately that is not yet a reality. -Jenn

Derek Faulkner said...

I have loads of old and mostly small bits and pieces. Anything that can tell a story or recall a happy memory will never be thrown away.
Have you had the same weather as us up there. We've had two days now on constant blue skies and very warm sunshine out of a chilly E wind.The wind and the sun are doing a very good job of drying the grazing marshes out.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Yes Derek - our weather has been the same and things have dried up nicely.
Coffee - there is a cautionary tale there for us all.
Heather - your keepsakes sound very similar to mine but I do wonder whether whether anyone will want them when I have gone.

jinxxxygirl said...

Hi Weave,

After a very unsettled childhood i tend to hold onto possessions... But i only keep what i absolutely love. I have gotten much better in recent years about not holding on to my possessions so tightly. With moving to CA and then AR i have has to let some things go... and i'am sure i'am better for it. In no particular order are the things i hold most dear... photographs have to be at the top though as most are irreplaceable ...my journals i've kept for almost 30 years now... and my art and craft supplies...it may seem silly to have that on the list but they are important to me... my hardcover books... I've collected them for years and hold each one dear...... Such wonderful questions you ask Pat. Hugs! deb

Dartford Warbler said...

I find it very hard to get rid of things which have sentimental value, so we would find it hard to be minimalist in this house!