For no reason at all, I want to really set the table for dinner. I have a whole wedding’s worth of crystal stemware and water pitchers that I never use. It suddenly seems ridiculous to have items in a home that one never uses because they are too nice or too good.
I climb up to the high cabinets, find my crystal, wash each piece free of dust, and set my table. I even unearth my crystal candlesticks and light candles. They seem funny next to the chicken pot pie.
My daughters arrive home and squeal that we have crystal goblets on the table.
They hold their goblets carefully–shaking a little–and sip solemnly. Our conversation seems more adult; we chew our food thoroughly and we rest our forks when we want to speak. We keep our napkins in our lap, and nobody dips their fingers in the candle wax. What a beautiful dinner!
Living with flair means bringing out the crystal. I don’t want to own something too good or too nice to use.
Journal: Do you have things you never use because they are too expensive?
I love your daughters' reaction!
We didn't even bother registering for china. We KNEW we would never use it. 🙂
I do a little ghostwriting for a digest and I included this story in a piece I submitted this weekend: “…a story about a soldier who sent his mother a set of expensive china while he was stationed overseas during the war. When he returned home for a visit after his deployment ended, he was disappointed and somewhat surprised to see that his mother wasn’t using the china he’d sent her. When he questioned his mother about it, she responded, 'I thought I’d save it for a special occasion.'”