One closet leads to the next drawer which eventually brought us to the dining room buffet. I say "us" because, as is often the case, Thomas was right with me as my right-hand-man. Last week's mission saw me unload a good portion of what was stored under the buffet in an effort to consolidate and free up space. In that process I had a revelation which was that we have some beautiful pieces of china and silver, that came from Mark's family, that need to be used more often. It's doing no good and is building no memories sitting in boxes under our buffet so in 2009 I resolved to use it all. I need to take a page from the Erma Bombeck book that reminds us how if we wait for special occassions we might wait forever.
To that end, as Thomas helped me with project-somehow-create-storage-space-where-none-exists, he discovered a lovely tea service with creamer, sugar bowl and teapot. It had, I think, been Mark's grandmother's and Thomas was instantly drawn to it. My first reaction was to tell him it was fragile and that we needed to put it away. Then I reconsidered and wondered if it would really hurt a thing for him to enjoy it for a few minutes. It hadn't seen the light of day for years and a little sun does us all good.
Nearly a week later he's still loving this tea set and has spent a good deal of time pouring me coffee or tea - he'll take special orders - and just generally enjoying this family heirloom.
Unfortunately, I never had the pleasure of meeting Mark's grandmother, Granny, but have heard stories and I know she was a character. I know that she had lots of beautiful things and that our house would be bare were it not for many of them. I also know that she loved Mark dearly and would hopefully be pleased to see her things put to use in his home - even if it is by Thomas.
During the last few years we've actually had a dining room chair - Granny's chair - that we've mysteriously found moved out from the table at odd times. I used to think Mark was moving it, and he thought I was. It turns out neither of us was moving it and so we've come to wonder if maybe Granny pays visits. I would never have even joked about such a thing 10 years ago but it's become such a regular occurance that I've sort of come to believe.
It brightens my day when he asks if I would like cream or sugar with my coffee and I hope it will Granny's as well, the next time she sits at the table.