I have a beautiful set of china. It belonged to my great-grandmother, and I adore it as much for the family history attached to it as I do for the beautiful design. I’ve also become more interested in paring down as I get older, and some of the advice I’ve seen has been to get rid of the fine china that just sits in your cabinet collecting dust.
While letting go of the never-used china might indeed be the best solution for some families, there’s another one you may consider if you’d rather not part with yours. Use the china, and not just on Thanksgiving or Christmas. Pull it out of the cabinet and eat pizza on it. Use it for your morning tea and muffin. Use it on birthdays, or just because. Let the kids use it.
I have certainly told my kids that it’s important to be careful with the china because it’s fragile. I’ve admitted that I’d be sad if a piece got broken, but I tell them the same thing Mom always said to me, “It’s just a dish, and you are far more important to me.” We all treat the china with a little extra care, but it doesn’t stop us from enjoying the chance to use it.
Every time I take a piece of china out of the cabinet and use it, I smile and think of my great-grandmother. I think of how wonderful it will be to pass it on to one of my kids or grandkids someday. There may be a few pieces missing at that point, but I hope that they use it, enjoy it, and maybe have a few fond memories of me whenever they do!
Here’s a challenge for you: Use your china tomorrow for breakfast or lunch. Don’t make a fancy meal to go with it though! If you just have oatmeal for breakfast, have it in a china bowl. If you have a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for lunch, put it on a china plate. I’ll bet that using your china for an ordinary meal will make you smile. It may even become a habit!