“Chirp” was the pattern of Lenox China that we registered for when we got married almost 10 years ago. Looking back, it is pretty amazing that we shower people with so much new stuff when they get married — there I was, with virtually no clue of what I would actually need to “run a household” walking around Bed, Bath, & Beyond with this magical scanner creating a wishlist. The kitchen in particular of our first apartment together — a tiny one bedroom — was *decked out* with all of this brand-new stuff and all for a couple of kids playing house together.
A couple of years later when it was time to move overseas, we gifted a large portion of our stuff to friends. Rob uses the big pot to this day to make corned beef and cabbage, Khloe took some of it to stock her college dorm. Some of it probably went to Goodwill. Our dishes however, and the red industrial style Kitchen-Aid mixer that my mom (the Cake Lady) had bought us, was carefully boxed and stored by my parents for about 5 years (along with God knows how many books and a plethora of other junk we left behind…thanks Mom!).
At first mention of our sudden return to the States last summer, my mom went into preparation mode: first, preparing the beds we fell into after 32 hours of travel with 2 young kids, and then digging out the boxes of all what she’d been storing — supplementing what was missing in our remaining kitchen supplies. Two weeks later, when we arrived at the transition housing provided by our company, we unpacked a completely stocked kitchen. Red Kitchen-Aid and Lenox “Chirp” dishes and all. It was like being showered all over again.
Sometimes I joke that this year we get to pretend that we’re living a normal life, but we’re definitely not playing house anymore. We are home for each other, the four of us. We aren’t overly attached to many possessions, yet something about having these dishes waiting for us as we usher in a new chapter in our lives almost 10 years after we received them as gifts, signals a continuity in our lives together. We may go through another season when we use Ikea or Goodwill dishes and that would be okay. For now, I’m enjoying these —gifted right at the start of our journey together — and teaching me that what’s important (material or not) can be preserved with a little effort and a lot of grace.