China or not to China – DoWoo #153/365

It’s an interesting experience selling almost everything you own to move somewhere where what you have may not work or the cost to move it far exceeds the benefit of having it.  It makes you take stock on what is truly important enough to consider storing.

Today I went to U-Haul and purchased packing material.  Specifically cushion foam to put in between the china plates.  Almost 30 years ago my mother purchased a complete set of china and gave me my first piece (creamer and sugar bowl set) on my birthday.  She explained that she had purchased the entire set and if I liked the pattern, she would continue to give me pieces on special occasions.   I liked it so she started giving pieces to me individually. 

After 2-1/2 years – having moved 9 times (the family started writing down my address in pencil) – I asked her to hold off giving me any more pieces until I settled down and got married.  I was concerned I may break a piece in transit.   She did and she did.  I received the entire set when I married my practice husband.  16 place settings! 

Now – from what I have seen, those who do have china have 8 settings, sometimes 10 or 12 but most stop at 12.  Not sure why she purchased 16 but I do recall her telling me she went to every Bowring store in the vicinity of where we lived and purchased every piece she could get her hands on – including a coffee pot and a tea pot, a 3 tiered dessert server, serving bowls with lids, platters, etc.  There are even two sets of salt and pepper shakers.  


Now…you have to understand something special about my mom.  She was known for shopping. She did so every day of the year it seemed.  I recall – before “Sunday shopping” was even an inkling of an idea, she was there to help out her kids.  If I had missed purchasing something for a bridal or baby shower, a birthday or well…any situation – I could call her up. She would ask 2 questions: 1) what was the occasion? and 2) how much did I want to spend? By the time I arrived at her place, she would have 3 or 4 items on the table for me to choose from. Money would change hands and off I would go. Sometimes she would even have the appropriate card or gift wrapping to use.  It was like having your own store whenever it was needed.  

When considering whether I wish to divest myself of the china my mom invested in for me…I realized while it is one of those items which may not make it to Costa Rica, for now I will pack it and store it.  

The observation…while packing today, I realized there are 16 settings!  That means when we adopt our daughter…we will have 2 children to leave our family belongings to AND each could have a set of 8 place settings – including salt and pepper shakers!  

I wonder…was my mom contemplating that far in advance? 

6 thoughts on “China or not to China – DoWoo #153/365

  1. lydia johnson

    Carolynn, your china settings would be a tough choice. Your story about them is one to enjoy…perhaps your mom was ahead of her time in thinking about the 16 settings!

    1. Carolynn Sokil - I Do Woo; Do U? Post author

      She was certainly forward thinking in very interesting ways. She came home around 30 years ago as well with an application form for Sheridan College for Animation. She wanted me to do something with my art and had heard Disney hired from this local college on a regular basis. I have never even thought of animation – and look where it is today. So…ahead of her time…I’m beginning to think so.

  2. Sandra Owen

    Great story and yes I would pack the china too under those circumstances. I have a set of cooking utensils that my nana gave me as a wedding present 30 years ago, and I would not part with them. They are quality, useful and sentimental. Really seeing your adventure unfolding Carolynn.


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