Not minimalist: I really like our formal wedding china.
We left several boxes of breakables with family while we were away and it was fun to be reunited with some almost forgotten items on our return. Fun and strange. Four years ago my pre-kids self was still fresh in my mind. I thought I would be back to making creme brulee soon. I thought that I would be back to having “bust out the formal china we’re cooking something special” dinner parties in the near future. Before we moved to the UK I had a china cabinet and I used it.
Things have changed.
With three kids five and under and with most of my friends having young kids, I don’t see formal dinner parties happening anytime soon. When people come by I make something that can sit warming in our crock pot. Simple, hearty and easy to eat with children on your lap is key. We don’t ‘set the table’ with place mats because the under two set like to pull those, and the dishes on top of them, off. I will make a labor intensive meal just a few times a year to dine on once the kids are in bed.
Should I get rid of my formal dinner china?
A handful of people have emailed me asking just this question. Should they let the dust gathering, space stealing, sometimes heirloom, family dinner china go? Fewer and fewer couples are registering for formal china. Dining rooms and formal dinners at home are a thing of the past. Some families are holding onto dinnerware that has been passed down from parents and grandparents and they feel pressure to keep it in the family – even if it is never used.
The answer for me: use it or lose it. I’ve started using our beautiful china as everyday dishes. They are dishwasher safe and I love how they look. I particularly love how they look if I get up before the rest of my family and have a quiet breakfast on my own. I’m not quite ready to let the kids use them but that day will come. Are they practical? No. Are they beautiful and do I use them? Yes.
Our kitchen is so small that I have to make some tough decisions about what we have in it. If it’s not used regularly we can’t give it space. So, beautiful dinnerware, I must use you or we will have to part ways.
Anyone else face this decision? Is anyone having lavish formal dinner parties still? If so can I get an invite!??