Monday, January 20, 2014

Great-Grandma Pearl's Teacups

I think I have to go back and fill in some history before I get to Great-Grandma Pearl's Teacup, and this blog Tea and Memories will do some of that, but not tell the whole story.

When AC and I got married way back in the 60's, Teacup Showers were high on the list of themes for Bridal showers, and one of my friends planned one for me. I got some beautiful teacups at my Teacup shower, and treasured them.  Some of them are real works of art, and almost too pretty to use, but I use them anyway.  Tea just seems to taste better when sipped from a pretty cup.

The shower gifts, and my love of tea, started me on a lifelong search for other beautiful teacups.  But, more than the beauty of any cup in my collection, is the story behind it.  Yes, it is the story behind something displayed in my home these days, that makes the object worth a place on a table or wall, or in a cabinet.

Below is a picture of my teacup cabinet.  Some are from my Bridal shower, some are from AC's mom's collection, and others have been given to me by friends over the years. Each one has a story to go with it.  You will notice that there are also other treasured items tucked in between the teacups here and there in this cabinet. 

On the third shelf down from the top is a chocolate-pot sitting proudly amongst all the teacups.  My dad sent this to my mom, along with a teacup, from Italy, when he was posted there as a soldier during the war.   The chocolate pot made the journey without a chip or a scratch, but the teacup got cracked in transit.   I was never able to use it, but I display it with joy.

Most of the cups on the bottom shelf were from my shower
These three treasures sit on top of the teacup cabinet.  The teacup on the left is the one dad sent mom from Italy.  The one on the right is one of the teacups my niece Elisabeth used for her Angel Tea parties.  The figure in the center was left to me in the will of a dear friend who used to enjoy sharing a cup of tea with me.   The doilies were hand made by my childhood best friend's grandmother, Grandma Carpenter, and the pictures were a gift from another dear friend.   Memories swirl around each item.
In another corner of the room I have a tea-cart, and the arrangement there changes with the seasons.  I have a spring Apple Blossom set from AC's mom that I put out during spring, then my Summer Roses set sits on the tea cart all summer.   The set pictured above sits out in autumn, and also for Valentines day.   During Christmas I have mom's poinsettia cups on the tea cart.
This is my Valentine display.   D#2 found this tea set for me in a second hand shop in Calgary many years ago. I love it, and I think of D2 whenever I use it.  The cups are paper thin, and so elegantly painted.  What a delight to sip my herb tea from these cups.  The vases were a wedding gift for AC's mom and dad in 1936.  They add the perfect touch to the tea set display.
This year during our visit to Riverwood my sister mentioned my mother's teacups.  She had them all at the farm, and she said she was going to send some to our great-niece Frances, and she asked me if I would like one for Danica.  I jumped at the offer, and said Danica would love one, and JJ would too.  I also boldly asked for one for myself and D#1, so we could have a teaparty using Great-Grandma Pearl's teacups.   
JJ was very pleased with his, and asked so many questions about the picture on it.  He wanted to know the names of the flowers, and studied the cup and saucer intensely to take in every detail of the cottage. I knew he would love that one, because he is such a detail person.
Danica loved the pink roses on her teacup, and pretended to cool her tea before taking a sip.  Pink roses seems perfect for this little rosebud. 
 I am not sure, but I think this is a wild rose. I liked the shape of the cup and the soft colours, so picked this one for D1
And this is mine.  I chose this cup because it has lilacs on it, and lilacs bring back so many childhood memories. 
The home that I was born and raised in and lived in until I got married had a huge bank of lilac bushes all across the back of the yard.   I could see them from my bedroom window, and loved the way they looked in all seasons, but especially in May when they were in full bloom.  Oh the fragrance that would fill the air from those bushes.  My mother wasn't a gardener, so we never, as far as I can remember, had fresh flowers in the house, but when the lilac bushes were in bloom, we would have a bouquet of them in the house.

I can remember mom telling me stories of her wedding day on May 27, and how the church was full of vases of  lilacs and everyone commented on how beautiful they looked and how wonderful the church smelled.  It was one of her vivid memories, and now it is mine too. 

I can't see or smell a lilac bush without thinking of my childhood home, so this teacup from mom's collection seemed very appropriate for me.  Thanks for sharing mom's teacup collection with us Heather.  We will treasure the ones you gave us. 


Anvilcloud said...

A post to archive forever.

Bernie said...

I loved reading this post Sue, I love the tea cups but I loved even more the reasons each tea cup was chosen for each individual. Like D I loved the pink roses but truly enjoyed the stories about the lilac bushes and the memories it brings to your heart. A treasured post for your girls to enjoy, big hugs, xo

Cuppa said...

Bernie - thanks for stopping by for a visit. It's always nice to hear from you.