Monday, January 6, 2014

Sentimental Objects: When Spices Are So Much More

Do you have a sentimental attachment to an everyday object?  I love when people tell me about the history of a piece in their home.  The sentiment lies in the story or origin of the item.  Once when I mentioned that I was looking for vintage Pyrex at a garage sale, a woman went into her kitchen cupboard and pulled out her prized blue Pyrex bowl to show me.  It was precious to her and she held it up saying, "This is the bowl my brother made banana pudding in." That bowl should never leave her kitchen. 

These are my prized pieces in the kitchen, spice tins that belonged to my maternal grandmother.

I keep them in my kitchen cabinet and move them left and right as I reach for the new containers that I actually cook with.  These must date back to the 1950's (you can find similar containers on eBay under "vintage spices") and by their weight I can tell that they are still full.  I hardly use paprika or cream of tartar either, so our tastes run in the family.  The cream of tartar tin is marked 43 cents on the bottom!

My mom gave me these tins a few years ago - she had them at home in her kitchen and she knew that I'd like to have them.  She has another melange of her mother's spice containers mixed in with our actual pantry items up at the cottage. 

Every once in a while, when I ask Dan to get me something out of the cupboard, he'll grab one of her vintage cinnamon or mustard tins and bring it out.  I'll say, "Thanks, but those are Nama's. They're probably 50 years old." 

He'll look at me like I'm crazy, but then return to the pantry to try and identify a tin from this decade.  Still, he understands that it is important to my mom and me that those tins stay right there on the shelf where they belong.  Mixed in with the other pantry staples - a part of our every day lives from long ago.

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