Author Topic: s/o Borrowing Dishes  (Read 1031 times)

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SamiHami

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s/o Borrowing Dishes
« on: November 19, 2013, 03:29:14 PM »
The dishes thread reminds me of my first Thanksgiving as a married person, when I had both of our families over. I was, of course, nervous and wanted everything to go as smoothly as possible. While hanging out with some friends I mentioned that I didn't have enough dishes and that I'd have to borrow from my mom or buy more. Just conversation; I wasn't fishing to borrow from any of them.

Well, a few days later one of them, a neighbor and close friend insisted I borrow the dishes he inherited from his mother. I declined because they wre his late mother's and I didn't want to damage them. He was insistent. He's a big burly hairy biker type and said he would probably never use them and that it would make him feel good knowing that they were being used by someone. How could I decline after that?

It turned out they were fine china with delicate gold trim and were absolutely beautiful! But I was so nervous about them being on the table. Had anything happened to any of them I'd be devastated! Fortunately all went well, no damage was done to any and they were returned intact. All's well that ends well.

Now that I have a stronger spine, I wonder if there would have been a polite way to decline, considering the worry involved. Yes, everything turned out fine, but I did spend the whole meal focused on the dishes rather than family. I guess I could have just not used them and lied to him and say that I did, but that didn't feel right either.

What would you have done in a similar situation?

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cwm

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Re: s/o Borrowing Dishes
« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2013, 03:39:54 PM »
I almost always follow my mom's rule when people try to offer things to me. I politely decline once, give them an out if they want it. If they insist, I say thank you and graciously accept.

For something like this, I might graciously accept, leave them in the box in the bedroom for dinner, and then thank him for letting me use them when I returned them.

But I understand where he was coming from. I have a set of china given to me by my sister. She got it when she divorced her ex husband. He had five matching sets from when they put his grandma in a care home and parceled out the contents of her house. He could never use that much china, so he did leave it for sis. Sis could never use that much china, so she gave some to me. I don't even have a coffee table in the living room, let alone a dining table. And even if I did have a dining table, I don't have the type of friends who would come over and eat a nice meal on fine china. If a friend needed to borrow some, I'd definitely offer mine. I won't be using it for many years, and even if something does happen, I'd rather it get used than sit around collecting dust.

Mergatroyd

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Re: s/o Borrowing Dishes
« Reply #2 on: November 19, 2013, 05:12:08 PM »
I think he probably got more enjoyment out of loaning them to you for you to use once,thinking that they would make the dinner that much more successful, then he ever did before or since. China is made to be used, (and being used, actually, being washed, helps it last longer because it doesn't become brittle) and some people really like thinking that they were able to help out in a way few people could.

I have lots of China. Because I use it, people keep giving me more. I've inherited almost every piece, because everyone wants their stuff to be used and enjoyed. That being said, I probably wouldn't loan it out, (but not for fear of it being broken. I'd be worried about getting it back!) . He must really like you. Did you invite him for supper too?

If you really don't want to use it, I think maybe "that won't be necessary." Would work.

 

VorFemme

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Re: s/o Borrowing Dishes
« Reply #3 on: November 19, 2013, 08:01:27 PM »
China gets brittle if you DON'T use it?

How often should you wash it, even if it is never used because you told your DH to get ONLY dishes that could go in the dishwasher AND microwave - so he picked the hand wash only metal trimmed stuff that he liked without reading the care & use instructions on the back?  Twice (at least the second time, I got him to put the stuff back on the shelf because I was with him instead of in the hospital with a three-hour-old baby during the Midnight Madness sale on china).
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Mergatroyd

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Re: s/o Borrowing Dishes
« Reply #4 on: November 19, 2013, 08:27:35 PM »
Apparently how the science works is that china plates (bone china) can become too dried out by sitting in a cupboard or box and will eventually break at the slightest bump. A washing every six months or so re-establishes the moisture content, making it more durable.
This link below says it is to preserve the glaze, but I've read elsewhere the above. In any case, I've had my stuff for several years and the only things that have broke or cracked were caused by children dropping a plate, and by the china cabinet getting pulled over. (Even then, only two things broke, and I should mention it was caught mid fall.) I have Royal Albert.
http://tipnut.com/how-to-wash-care-for-fine-china-dishes/

Luci

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Re: s/o Borrowing Dishes
« Reply #5 on: November 19, 2013, 08:44:26 PM »
My china does not say "bone" on it, so I don't know what to think. I do use many pieces 4 times a year for the past 12 years, and some pieces have never been used. When I shuffle them around or washed them after 35+ years unused, I had no casualties.

They do have gold trim, and I finally gave up and washed them in the dishwasher with liquid detergent and no heat cycle, and they seem to be not deteriorating noticably. Of course, the microwave is out because of the gold trim, and I would worry about the change in temperature so rapidly, anyway.

Well, the thread is veering off!

I will not borrow dishes now even if pleaded with. I think if someone were that insistant that I feared he/she would be offended and that person were not at the event, I'd hide them in the guest room or safely under our bed and then return because, as the poster said, "I was so nervous about them being on the table."

VorFemme

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Re: s/o Borrowing Dishes
« Reply #6 on: November 19, 2013, 09:32:46 PM »
I would loan out the 24 clear glass luncheon plates - I paid about $10 at the Salvation Army for a box with some six to seven dozen of the plates, in two different patterns (airline no longer serving food on the plane & donated them, based on the markings on the box).  I picked out 24, my sister picked out some for her "open house" parties, we offered the leftovers to Mom for their church's kitchen (small church - still some three dozen or so plates) but she passed and they went to a thrift shop on the other side of town, where Lil Sis lives.

I wouldn't loan out the china to many people.

Lil Sis had three sets of china - wedding present with first husband, his mother had eight sets of family china & told them to pick one because DH's sister had three sets - two wedding presents & one heirloom set (her SIL pitched a hissy fit because as the only daughter, all eight sets of family china were supposed to come to her and ONLY to her and her son & daughter).  She got told that her brother & his wife deserved a set of family china and she had gotten first pick.  When her DD got married, if there were any sets left, her DD could pick one.

In the meantime - Lil Sis picked a set...and later passed a set to my DD - I just don't remember if it was her MIL's family china or family china that our maternal grandmother passed along...she also had inherited a number of sets from older sisters who never married (but had china they'd bought for their "hope chest", inherited, or bought just to have china because they wanted china).  So - there is a lot of china in the family - just every set is different and spread across three states, up to a 14 hour drive away from anything resembling a "central point".  Not feasible to drive to get china from Mom, DD, either SIL, but maybe from Lil Sis (other side of Houston is ONLY an hour away, one way, on the toll road).
Let sleeping dragons be.......morning breath......need I say more?

SamiHami

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Re: s/o Borrowing Dishes
« Reply #7 on: November 20, 2013, 08:53:38 AM »
I think he probably got more enjoyment out of loaning them to you for you to use once,thinking that they would make the dinner that much more successful, then he ever did before or since. China is made to be used, (and being used, actually, being washed, helps it last longer because it doesn't become brittle) and some people really like thinking that they were able to help out in a way few people could.

I have lots of China. Because I use it, people keep giving me more. I've inherited almost every piece, because everyone wants their stuff to be used and enjoyed. That being said, I probably wouldn't loan it out, (but not for fear of it being broken. I'd be worried about getting it back!) . He must really like you. Did you invite him for supper too?

If you really don't want to use it, I think maybe "that won't be necessary." Would work.

He does really like me (and DH). It's almost 25 years later and even though he's moved to a different state we are still close friends. I would have been happy to have him at the meal but he had other plans.

What have you got? Is it food? Is it for me? I want it whatever it is!

alkira6

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Re: s/o Borrowing Dishes
« Reply #8 on: November 20, 2013, 09:02:11 AM »
Honestly, it has never occurred to me to borrow dishes/china.  I have some sets of basic clear glass plates and some plain white plates left over from my catering business, so I use those. I also bought some salad bowls at dollar tree (2/$1) that mix/match well.  The first dinner I hosted I just bought a set of dishes from the restaurant supply depot for $10 and have kept those. I have decorated some with china markers (stenciled and baked) and have a load of different chargers that are mix/match for when I want to fancy things up.  I usually depend on table décor, tablecloths, napkins, charger, and napkin rings to pull a "look" together.