Do you remember when Mark and I went to Asheville, North Carolina, to help his Great Aunt Libby move? In order to move to her smaller residence, Libby wanted to distribute many of her possessions to family members. One of the gifts she gave Mark and me was her collection of rice grain porcelain dishes, which she bought in China over 70 years ago when she was working as a missionary. When we were in Florida, I repacked the dishes, which were hastily packed to expedite Libby’s move. (Here’s a pic of me in my in-laws’ garage sorting through my loot 🙂
We have 14 place settings of these dishes! That’s a big party! You would not believe how many sizes of bowls and plates are in this set. What do people use 4 different sizes of bowls for? I have no idea.
These dishes are called “rice grain” because they look like they have rice in them. I learned that they are made by carving out little holes in the porcelain, then it is covered in glaze, and then fired. The glaze settles into the holes and creates a translucent, rice-like shape in the dishes. When you hold the dishes up to the light, they glow! They are so beautiful!
As I packed the boxes, I thought of Libby as a young woman, traveling to China by boat on her own, working as a school teacher, and buying these dishes. I asked her if she was scared traveling to China on her own, and she said, “Of course not! It was what I was meant to do, so I did it.” Wow. I just stared at her when she said that, thinking of all the times I’ve been scared to do something, even when I knew it was what I was meant to do.
A note floated out of the box while we were unpacking Libby’s dishes to put them in our new home. It says, “Congratulations on being in your new home!” I wrote it in February, when I repacked the dishes. I knew that when I opened the boxes of dishes again, I would be in my new home. It’s something I have wanted for such a long time, and when I packed the dishes, I had no idea when or how or where we would move, so I packed the note and the dishes with tears of longing.
A few days ago when I found the note, I was unpacking the dishes with tears of joy 🙂
It’s amazing to me – I’m always amazed – at how life changes. Things happen that we don’t even expect to send us in a new direction. Or something we really want seems completely hopeless, and then one day it happens.
And it makes me think…it doesn’t matter who you are…a miracle or solution or unexpected joy might be just around the corner.
I’m always ready for more joy and happy surprises! How about you?
Hello Universe! I’m ready for even more blessings of abundance and joy!!!
Melanie Jade 🙂