Use the Nice Dishes
First and foremost, I hope you are doing OK. That's such an inadequate statement, but it comes from the heart and is meant to encompass every aspect of your well-being. I hope this space can be an uplifting outlet of entertainment outside of the news cycle for you. In that spirit...
For a little over a month, I've been thinking about hosting a tea party. I could use something to look forward to: a reason to pull out Aunt Min's set of "nice dishes" which includes a tea service for 12 and make tiny food that looks cute; to set a table with Grandma Ruth's linens and a vase of hot pink carnations. But here's the thing: there's no one in my friend circle who would really love to attend a tea party.
Don't get me wrong: my friends would show up, for sure. But not because they're excited to sit around and drink tea and have that particular experience with me. And in much the same way that I avoid watching Hallmark movies with my husband Dan, even when he offers, because I know I'll feel self-conscious the whole time - and like I need to reassure him repeatedly that yes, I know this is the exact same plot from that other one we watched - I know that having a tea party with wonderful people who just aren't into tea parties would not be satisfying. I didn't want to force it, for the sake of making someone else experience something that I - and I alone - wanted.
In my twenties and thirties, this would have turned out one of two ways:
This tea party happened on March 12th, when COVID-19 was just beginning to become more real here in Minnesota. As I write this post on March 22nd, when it's now very real, I keep thinking: Use the nice dishes now. Make the cute tiny food with what's in the fridge now. Light the candles now. Sit and look out the window and breath now. Don't wait for a gathering, or the right time, or a better moment.
Make the moment.
My moment is not your moment, so I'd love to know what that looks like for you. I've heard a few people use the term "romancing the ordinary," which really lands with me. I mean, I'm certainly living my most ordinary life at the moment, at home with Dan and Gravy and a week's worth of yoga pants. So I'm very into finding ways to add a little romance and whimsy to my everyday. So let's hear it in the comments - how are you romancing the ordinary in your home these days?
3/22/2020 08:42:46 pm
Have not started the peace or romancy the ordinary but with this inspiration I'm going to try. Actually I would have come to your team party. It looked lovely.
3/23/2020 07:54:26 am
You would have loved that the ketchup was served in the delicate salt bowls from Ruth's set of dishes :)
3/24/2020 11:40:26 am
I love this, Sara. Well done!
8/29/2020 04:34:53 pm
So great! I was organizing recently because who doesn’t during a pandemic? And I found my great grandma’s and grandma’s China. I don’t need whole sets because it’s just me but I’ve pulled out enough pieces to use everyday and regularly. Instant reminders of my beloved grandmothers and resurrected heirlooms brought to the light of day. Thanks for this piece!
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This is a place to celebrate all the parts of yourself that come with age and experience. I'm here to share with you what I know and to explore with you the many (many) things I don't.