What's It Wednesday #25
When I was a very little girl, I had a best friend. My best friend and I would have tea parties, watch the roller derby, and I would tell her all of my secrets as we gardened together. Although she is no longer with us, my great-grandmother will always be in my heart. Roses were her favorite flowers to clip and bring into her beautiful home.
This platter is one of my favorites. She used to serve me Social Tea Biscuits on this platter. She always made me feel very special and like a fairy princess. She even had a special name for me. She called me Polly, and I was the only person allowed to call her by her first name, Helen. This always amazed my mother. Her grand-children called her grandmother and she truly was a "Grand Mother". I have no idea what the other great-grand children called her. I just know they didn't call her Helen.
Helen loved to entertain. She was known for her elaborate garden parties, teas and other social events.
When my mother was a little girl, Helen used this china for special lunches. It was one of her favorites. The china was created by the Homer Laughlin Company which began in 1871 by brothers Shakespeare and Homer Laughlin. Fiestaware would later become one of their most popular dinnerware lines.
Helen was much like the roses she grew. She was elegant and beautiful, and in her life time she dealt with many thorns. She lived in a world where she had to hide the fact that she was jewish and had to blend into a very different world. This meant that her grand-children, which included my mother, could not address her in public. By the same token, she could not go to her grand-chidren's schools and participate as a proud grandmother.
Instead, Helen sent a taxi to my mom's school every Friday to pick her and my Uncle up and carry them to her house for the weekend. If they did not go to the beach for a picnic, Helen would prepare elaborate lunches for her grand-children and serve them on these very plates.
When I was a little girl, Helen would not only serve delicious lunch on her favorite lunch china, she would prepare the most scrumptious desserts. There was always something from her vegetable garden included in the meal. After our wonderful meal, she would sneak me a cup of coffee. Please don't tell my mother.
My mother and some dear friends came to visit this weekend, so I served a delicious spinach and strawberry salad which allowed room for dessert. I served our lunch on Helen's lunch plates at the same table she served her friends, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Helen always had some decadent dessert up her sleeve, from mouth watering pies, to elaborate over-the-top cakes. She loved to celebrate everything from my ballet recitals to Dusty Rhodes winning a wrestling match.
My great-grandmother was not only a role model for my grand-mother, mother and I, she was a role model for the community. She had a heart as big as all outdoors and was known for her life time of philanthropy and service to the community. Helen will always be my guardian angel my special rose.
Who are/were the special roses in your life?