I miss my mother every day but today, nearly eight years after her death, I miss her a lot.
Today was the day when I finally fully inherited Mom’s Rosenthal Maria Weiss dishes. I rarely saw these dishes on a table when I was growing up because they were used for only the very fanciest of occasions. But I often admired them as they sat on the shelf in the built-in hutch of the dining room in our turn-of-the-century Berkeley home. I wish I had a photo of Mom’s Rosenthal dishes in use during my childhood. It would almost certainly have been taken during a Bavarian Christmas Eve dinner (a tradition I still continue with my family today), weisswurst and kartoffelsalat on the beautiful white hexagonal plates, and eager children, ready to eat quickly because we knew that presents would be next.
After Mom’s death, Dad packed up all the Rosenthal and called to let me know that Mom had wanted me to have the set. I was thrilled, but knew that there was no way they would fit into our small, already-stuffed kitchen. But we have a new, larger kitchen now, and today I finally brought Mom’s Rosenthal from the wardrobe in the garage where they’d been stored for so many years…
…into the new kitchen, where I carefully unwrapped each delicately wrapped dish…
…and laid it on the dining room table.
In the box with the dishes was a brochure written in German, which I had picked up in a Rosenthal store in Munchen when Mom and I went to Germany together in 2001.
I couldn’t help thinking how much Mom would have liked helping me – and how much I would have loved for her to be be there. (Which is silly because if she were still alive the dishes wouldn’t be at my house!)
Some pieces brought back such powerful memories of my mother – her voice, her touch, her smell. Maybe she was with me after all… somehow.
What is this piece?
It’s the stunningly beautiful coffee pot! I absolutely love this piece!
I remember when a coffee cup chipped and Dad painstakingly fixed it, so careful to glue each tiny piece back onto the cup. It never looked quite right again, but it had become the “special” cup.
Every so often, stores like TK Maxx would sell Rosenthal knock-offs and both Mom and I would grab them up, almost as if they were as much a treasure as the originals. But really, no way!
This is the insignia of the true treasure:
I’m not even sure what this is:
Something to use at afternoon tea, perhaps?
Look at these itty-bitty espresso cups, just an inch or two high:
Eventually, all the pieces had been unwrapped and placed on the table.
This is by no means a full set. There are missing dinner plates, extra cups, and partial sets.
This lid, for example…
…belongs to a butter dish that was broken by an un-named grandchild not so very long ago. Maybe I can find just the missing piece somewhere on the internet.
When we were designing our kitchen, I specified glass-doored cabinets specifically with Mom’s Rosenthal in mind. And look!
I’m not sure how much we’ll use these dishes, but I feel better just finally having them out of the box and in our home. I think Mom would have preferred this, too.