A Bread basket

A Bread basket

Hi there.
Thanks for popping in.

Was listening to Radio 4 last week, on the way over to mum and dad’s for breakfast; a woman was talking about breadboards, and how intrinsic they are in our homes. 

So over breakfast we discussed this, how objects of next to no monetary value can hold such importance.

And whilst we chatted, sitting on the table, centre stage, was this little basket. Not the bread board in our home, but the bread basket. 

I picked it up.
“You recognise it?” asked Mum.

“Of course. I made it” I replied.

In the basket, to catch the crumbs, was a little cloth….
“You recognise it?” asked Mum.

“Of course. Oma made it” I replied. That is my mum’s mum.

And all the gold and silver in the whole world wouldn’t replace that little well loved basket with that precious little cloth.

The woman on the radio was right.  It is these simple, seemingly banal, objects which we pay no proper attention to because they are so deep-rooted in our daily lives, which lie at the very core of our security and family. Not the new vase from John Lewis, nor the flash Swedish stuff I just bought to put the soap in. No, no, no.

It’s things like the pot I made in 5th year at school, which Mum still keeps her kitchen utensils in.

Which sits on the mat I wove in first year,

and on the stand Steve made when he was a lad. 

Everywhere in Mum and Dad’s house there are things we made as kids!
Look! Just a little pot Mum puts her jewellery and rings in when she is cleaning. 
BG. 3K
So now, when I have finished writing to you, I think I’ll have a wander round our own house, and gather all those invaluable things of no real value which make our house a home, too. 
Sometimes, dare I confess, I hide things in cupboards because they don’t go with the decor anymore. How shallow am I ?!?!
Shame on me. Mind you, Grace and Mark did like painting those vile ceramic frogs and fairies bright pink and green! Not quite a 45 year old wicker basket – but I know where they are, those precious things…
(Time to get them out. And stop buying trendy shit!)
I shall lay them out on the kitchen table, and savour them. And their roots. And all that they symbolize.  
If you have time, do they same.
Love & Hugs,

33 thoughts on “A Bread basket

  1. I have my Godmothers biscuit tin which was an old toffee tin always had a supply of rich tea or digestives. No money in the world could buy it and it's worth absolutely nothing except in previous memories.

  2. I've still got my Mam's button tin still with lots of vintage buttons inside. There is one from a duster coat I had when I was a kid, and there are a couple of leather ones that I remember from my brothers cardigan. I've got a little sergeant major pen pot that Noel made at school and I've got machine embroidery he did too, which I framed and have on the wall. Yes, we they are not worth much in monetary terms, but are priceless in other ways xx

    1. I wish I had my mums button tin…. No idea where it went! Probably the same way that many things from my childhood went!
      I have a pot my mum made and one that I made!
      I have things Amy made as a child and they are priceless!

    2. I've got my grans button tin, I can remember playing with it as a child and wouldn't part with it for all the tea in China. I like the fact you can remember buttons from garments you and your brother wore, that's very special. Xxx

  3. I still have my gran’s sewing needle wooden case and needles her thimble she use to take in sewing when she lost her husband to make ends meet I remember she had a singer treadle sewing machine which she taught me to sew on it’s nearly forty years since she passed away the memory’s are as special my granddaughter has just been to visit today and we where talking about her just today memories shared .xxx

  4. I have all sorts of things from each family generation; my grandfather’s brose bowl – a simple pottery bowl he carried and ate from when fencing lonely areas of NE Scotland, my college clay vases that Mum kept on display, Mum and Gran’s embroidered ephemera, a fab waistcoat in dogtooth type check my mum knitted for her friend’s Christmas present but decided to keep it for herself around 1947, Dad’s cabinet work and perhaps best of all Mum’s book of sewing and knitting examples circa 1939, this really is a wonder. No wonder she used to score high marks in later years for the WI! Why am I such a hoarder? Sadly it seems future generations don’t hold such items in high regard or indeed appreciate them. Nothing better than ‘raking’ through Gran’s button box either. ;~}

  5. I still have a bluebird toffee tin that my grandad tgen my mum now me keep our papers in oh the the old family bible that's full of colourful prints..my grandad used to let us look at it as little kids..my mother was horrified in case we spoilt it.

  6. Hi Barb,
    Like Eve, I have my Mam's button tin which always takes me back to my childhood. I used to sit for hours sorting them and stringing the same buttons together. The are buttons from clothes that i had when I was little – I vividly remember a pair of pink pedal pushers from when I was about 6 and I've got the buttons! My craft table is actually my Mam's sewing machine cabinet from about 1930. When she died and we were clearing the house we found a sculpture from thermolite block that I did when I was 12 and an enamel brooch that I made in the 6th form, table mats that I'd crocheted and made using hardanger embroidery and also tapestry and embroidered pictures that I'd done. Two of these were donated to the home where she died and they've still got them. We have quite a few bits and bobs from Dave's side too which are important to us. I also have my Mam and Dad's war medals. I definitely think that it's these things that do make a home and evoke many memories. Love and hugs Alison xxx

  7. Hi Barbara
    What lovely memories your mum has that she can share with you and these things don't cost a fortune. I look around and I've got grans biscuit barrel, bits and pieces of China from my mum and gran and beautiful embroidered table cloths from my gran and great aunts. Just this week we had sausage pie that my husband insists is made in a dish my mum had and always made sausage pie in. He says it wouldn't taste the same in a different dish. Oh yes my baking tins were my grans, she showed me how to make a sponge cake many years ago, I know one was a toffee tin from Woolworths! I've also got painted animals and pots from Emma, some have their own place and the lounge wouldn't look the same without them. You were good at basket weaving weren't you, no wonder you tried it again at Glastonbury. Enjoy your evening.
    Love Diane xxx

  8. Oh this is so true. When my dad passed away and going through his things, I found an old bag that I had sewed at primary school. I was totally unaware it was still in existence. To think of how he had treasured that all those years and I hadn’t known.

  9. Bec (my daughter) and I have been talking about all the little unfashionable but much loved bits and pieces we have around the place, remembering where they came from, and why they are special to us. A stool that Geoff made for his mother, a couple of pieces of pottery that I made in my third year, an embroidered picture of a cottage that Mum started in her 20's and I finished about 30 years later. That picture is on my urgent to do list as it needs framing again as the existing frame has disintegrated. I could go on as there are lots more very treasured objects that will continue through the family because of how they came to be with us. By the way, did you weave traffic mats at junior school? They, sadly, rotted away but I still have the felt needle case I made for Mum at the same time, decorated by those felt bluebells in the same era. The list could go on much further. Perhaps we should start a show and tell on Wednesdays to show off our treasures and their stories. xxx Maggie

  10. It’s good to have such things. I have 3 china platters large, medium, small, they sit in the cupboard until Christmas buffet time and then they come into their own. They were Nan’s, every year I say to my mum and sister – do you remember these ?! I’ve also got 2 babcham Bambi’s that come out every Christmas that must now be 60 plus years old but I remember seeing them at Nan’s every Christmas and they’ve been at mine for the last 35 years! It’s good to have such memories. X

  11. My most basic treasure is an old metal toasting fork sitting on the mantelpiece over the fire. It is made from two plain pieces of wire twisted together and was my grandmother's. She died aged 85 just I over 40 years ago so it's at least 80 years old. Xx

  12. I have my fruit in a crystal bowl that was bought for my nan and grandad's 60th wedding anniversary – my mum and dad had their 65th anniversary last year, so it must be quite old now! I also have a tea set my mum and dad had for a wedding present, and when I moved I gave my niece my grandmas vintage cocktail glasses. I just hope the blanket I crocheted last year becomes an heirloom because it took me so flipping long to do it!!! x

  13. This is so very true! I have got my Nan's button tin and some of her buttons and also one of my Mum's button tins too. In fact I used 3 of the buttons a few years ago, when I made a wrist corsage for my daughter. She got married in Las Vegas and they have been a custom there for years.
    After my Mum died I asked my daughter if she would like a small blue & white china jug of my Mum's. I pointed out that it did have a small chip. She was overjoyed to receive it – "it's the Mint Sauce Jug" she cried!! She was over the moon and you would have thought I had given her a fortune! xxx

  14. very poignant and so true. I have stopped de-cluttering because everything old/hand crafted by the family are special to me in some way or another.
    Brilliant youtube Tuesday
    thank you and love to all
    Anne (Reading) trying to come out of hibernation!x

  15. My husband has been a qualified carpenter for 36 years and we still use the little side table he made in woodwork at school. x And not handmade, but I still have the butterknife my parents were given on their engagement by the jeweller they bought Mums' ring from in 1955ish. xx

  16. My sewing pin box/cushion, which I still use all the time, was made by my daughter when she was 10 and she is now 43. My spoon rest is a glazed handprint of my younger daughter when she was 4 and she will be 40 this year. I still have many handmade things which they made as children and they bring back so many happy memories.
    My weekend g&t is drunk from a crystal glass, which is the last surviving piece of a water set which my in laws got as a wedding present in 1938. It tastes so much nicer than in a plain tumbler!
    I don’t think it is a coincidence that all the bloggers who treasure precious things with no particular monetary value, love crafting and appreciate the beauty in things handmade.
    Annette X

  17. I do have a few things of sentimental value and some are out but others have to be packed away as I don't have the space anywhere to put them. The one thing I have and still use is a colander which my Nan and then my Mum used, and when I came across it I just had to use it too. Your talent shines through in the lovely things you have made and which your Mum obviously treasures. x

  18. My mums button tin my mums dressing table set glass some bits missing but as far back as can remember have been missing pottery I made at school and knitting needle case I embroidered at school . A picture Sandie painted of trees at day centre she loved hanging from climbing frames as before surgery on her spine at age ten she use to hang from a bar as excercise to stretch her badly curved sponge she loved trees so the cut a picture of her hanging fro a climbing frame in park and put it in her painting of trees looks like sjhe is hanging and swinging from the tree laughing very precious xxx

  19. I'm lucky enough to have lots of memory pieces that I wouldn't part with for all the 'tea in China', and a couple of days ago I discovered my mam's little black cat (plastic, out of a Christmas Cracker too many years ago to remember when) as I finally felt able to look inside her handbag… she passed away early last year. I couldn't believe she still had carried it with her… needless to say there were tears of sadness but also joy and said cat is now safely zipped into a pocket in my bag where I hope it will remain for many years to come. Definitely agree that the 'tat' we keep is priceless! xxx


  21. It is nice to treasure all the bits and bobs that we have created and our kids have created over the years. I love looking through the button jar and remembering the games I used to play with my grandmother. It will be interesting to see what my kids will treasure of mine in the future. It could be the aluminum letter rack I made in tech class, or the rag doll I made at college.

  22. Hello Barb, what a tremendously moving blog post. And you are right, there are so many things that are treasures but of no great value. I have quite a few from both my parents and my parents-in-law, and like many on here button tins, crochet clothes from my Ouma, things the kids made. So like you, it is time to get them out and savour the memories. Take care all. Bx

  23. As you can imagine I have lots of very precious items in our house. Like you say no value but invaluable to me and also they are arriving from grandkids now. I love them and so many memories. The little star that goes on the tree every Christmas, does not go with my colour scheme but I helped my grandaughter make it when I used to look after her. More precious than the posh baubles. Enjoy your trip down memory lane, those little gems will make you smile. xx

  24. My loft is full of items I can't bear to part with, like tablecloths my Mum used but which never see the light of day now. I also have a little candle holder on my desk that my 49 year old daughter made at school, and so many drawings from my 3 children's school days, and I am now collecting files of them from my lovely grand-daughters. I am far too sentimental about these things, hence a full loft and house with what so many would call rubbish, but I love. Enjoy your visit with your daughter Barbara, I love mine to bits and see her so seldom now due to logistic difficulties, but these little items bring back fond memories every day.

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