Monday, December 29, 2008

My Grandparents' Buffet

Is everyone done celebrating Christmas for this year? We aren't! We have one more and that is with our two sons and families this coming Saturday. It will be so good to be with them. I am really looking forward to it. But after that it will be back to just plain winter for, oh, three or four months, I suppose! Ahhh, winter in Minnesota. Good thing I have plenty of indoor projects to keep me occupied.

In my last post, I showed a close-up of the winter decor on the buffet in my dining room, the tiny lights twinkling in the mirror. Here you can see the entire buffet. The picture propped up on the right side is my maternal grandparents on their wedding day. They were married on June 12, 1907. I don't know if the buffet was a wedding gift or not, but this was their buffet and it was in their home from the early days of their married life. It seems appropriate to me to have their picture displayed here.

Some years ago the buffet was given to me by my mom. The large bottom drawer stuck, the two center doors hung crooked and didn't close properly and the finish had deteriorated. Since the buffet held special meaning to me, I decided to have it professionally restored rather than trying to do it myself. In the restoration process, a dark burn mark was revealed, more than likely from an oil lamp that sat too close to the top ledge. Ahhh, the good old days before electricity! I keep an oil lamp in the same place. It just seems to belong there.

The books under the wedding picture are an 1885 Bible, a 1906 and a 1909 hymnal and a 1907 small catechism, all in Norwegian. The hymnal in English behind the wedding picture is much newer - 1941. None of these books belonged to my family although my family is Norwegian. Grandpa is of the first generation in his family born here. Grandma and her mother were born in the US but her dad was born in Norway. I picked up these books at an auction probably 20 years ago. It is sad that the little catechism has a name embossed in gold on the cover. No one in that family bid on them at the auction, so I did. I have kept them ever since.

I love the pose of the wedding couple! And check out the bouquet! One sad note on this joyous occasion was that the groom's mother, my great-grandmother, passed away on June 4, just days before the wedding. Alas, the wedding arrangements had been made, guests were arriving, she would have wanted them to proceed with their wedding, and so they did. (Click on the pictures to enlarge. The bride might look familiar. On the top right of my blog there are pictures of "Em and the Gran." The Gran picture is actually this grandma's sister, my great-aunt Anna.

I don't know what happened to Grandma's dress. I'll have to see if Mom knows. ..... A quick phone call to Mom and I found out that Grandma's dress is (hopefully) in Mom's cedar chest, safe and sound. She is going to look just to be sure!

I need to make a note to myself to tell you about my mom's wedding dress someday. Now that is another great story! It's a perfect example of "upcycling." Hint: it is white silk and the year was 1945.* Care to guess? Leave a comment!

Til then, be warm, be happy, be safe and have a joyous new year!

*Edited to add: Today is the 63rd anniversary of that wedding day.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Tis the Season

A little peek into our great room.

Be safe, be happy and have a very blessed Christmas!