Tuesday, October 09, 2007
Jugs I have Known
There was great excitement among the jugs gathered on my kitchen counter at the prospect of a photo shoot. A little gentle jostling, as the smaller jugs tried not to be overshadowed by the bigger ones. Of course, since they don't all hang out on one shelf, they had to be gathered up from the four corners. And since this isn't my mother-in -law's house, it goes without saying, they had to be dusted. And then a suitable location had to be found, where each would be shown off to best advantage. Oy!
So here they are. Molly bawn's jugs! No unseemly snickering from the peanut gallery please.
In the back row on the left we have a Wedgewood jug from a coffee set my favourite aunt gave us for our wedding. I have never used it. Okay, once or twice to pour water into the steam iron...I prefer the traditional blue and white wedgewood. But back in those ancient times nobody asked you. They got you what they thought you should like! Considering the source, I've held onto it and carted it around the planet and gamely found a place to store it for thirty seven years.
Next to it is a Polish pottery jug. Now that my hair is white,I'm what I would once have considered as old as Methuselah, I don't have to entertain unless I want to, I finally know what dishes I want. These . I love them. I pick pieces up whenever I find them on sale. I found them first at an international wives' charity bazaar in Brussels, and have been besotted ever since.
In the middle is a Delft jug my S-I-L brought me from one of her many trips to Europe when she worked for an airline. Years later on a trip to Holland, we watched, fascinated, as artists painted similar ware with similar designs, all by hand.
Next comes a jug from the Montana years. Montana has many wonderful potters producing this kind of stoneware. This one serves well as a toothbrush holder!
On the end is another Polish milk jug...
The large white one on the left, in front, is trotted out whenever we make sangria.....It's been too long! I think this is its first airing this year....and not for sangria. I like the raised pattern of grapes. I think it was made in Italy. In front of it sits a smaller Polish jug, and to its left a tiny one that holds a single serving of syrup or milk.....
At the back is a big agricultural number. He used to hold wooden spoons on the kitchen counter. Until I grew tired of his boringness and replaced him with---you guessed it---a much more cheerful piece of Polish pottery. He's been sulking in a cupboard in the laundry ever since.
The other large jug in front is from Portugal. Purchased by Youngest Son as a gift for me at the same bazaar in Brussels. Except it was carelessly tossed into a plastic bag instead of being wrapped in paper to protect it. And it got chipped before he got it home and he was very sad. Wouldn't you take care to wrap something with extra care if the purchaser was a small boy excited to buy his mom a present he'd picked out all by himself? Chip and all,it goes where I go.
All the way on the right is a beautiful jug we bought at the Grand Canyon eons ago. Handmade and hand painted....The beige and brown one is also from Montana and sits on a shelf in another bathroom.
The pretty Prince Albert with the gold trim and roses is from a china set my parents got as a wedding present in 1947. It was used only on state occasions as we were growing up. Christmas and Easter. There was another china set also but I loved this one best. Rise has the other one, which she claims to like better. But maybe she said that because she knew I wanted this set....
The tiny one in front, with Mr. McGregor brandishing his garden rake, is from a doll's teaset I bought one year for our California girl. She was more into Breyer horses, so that may just have been a convenient excuse for me to buy it. Peter Cottontail ran around to the other side to escape the wrath of Mr. McGregor.
The silver [tarnished] jug to Mr. McGregor's left is from my maternal grandmother's house. I have a faint memory of sitting in her garden when I was very young, having tea. All the silver was in use...."relics of ould dacency" is what the wags in Ireland would say. But I was mightily impressed and thought my grandmother a very elegant, if remote, lady.
I didn't think I'd blather on so long about jugs, but there you are, if you haven't fallen asleep.