Wednesday, April 21, 2021

For the Love of the Cup...

One of my high school classmates posted the question, "How many cups of coffee do you drink a month?" She got answers ranging from proud zeros to laughing --but kinda sheepish 100's. I added my comment that I drank coffee at least once a day because I loved to feel connected to all my friends and family, living and passed away, who delighted in a morning coffee! 

I felt odd at that reasoning... But then those dear faces and their steaming cups began to focus. My grandmother, Ma we called her, specifically taught me to drink coffee. She had a  beautiful collections of bone china teacups, and she poured them for us grandchildren with a delightful concoction of milk, sugar, and gradually more and more coffee ratio. Delightful! 

My grandfather, Paw-paw, and my other grandma, Gramma, never missed a morning with coffee and the newspaper at the kitchen table. I still have his ironstone cup that was created with no handles. He cradled it in his work-worn hands and seemed to drink in the warmth of that daily ritual. It holds my toothbrush and toothpaste, but I don't personally like its unusual, unglazed feel for drinking. 

My own parents drank coffee together every morning, and they brewed  a delightful silver-ish percolator every time a guest entered our door, day or night...  Coffee smells and sounds like hospitality! I had to get rid of that pretty percolator because it shocked me every time I touched it!!!!  It was tossed in a fit of overwhelm when the builders were here and my things were in total chaos.

Then there were my coworkers, teachers who daily  shared sessions of coffee and brainstorming together. I remember how the school board hurt the feelings of the older teachers when they decided to cut costs and require teachers to bring coffee from home/pay for our own. I always brought in my 5# even if my schedule wouldn't allow time for me to drink it...  

Coffee tastes so mellow from a thermos taken to a football game or auction.  Paw-paw drank his thermos in the sweltering hayfield. Now that's a coffee lover! I love the Tumblin' Tumbleweed coffee I order from Texas with their special label for my grandfather.

During this lockdown I make coffee for my son and me every morning. He says he learned to make and drink coffee at age 13 when he dubbed himself honorary coffee maker and server in the Cardiac waiting room as his grandfather (my dad) recuperated from coronary bypass surgery. 

Thanks to friend blogger Miss Merry, I ordered a few of these photo organizers, and I have three filled so far with photos, teas, and embroidery floss! Fun!

I enjoy my cup and think of the hundreds of cups shared with dear friends when they visited in my kitchen. Some stand out as real connoisseurs. (Paula, Patty, Karla, Nellie, Mr. Buster, and myself). I think of the delicious conversation and common ground shared. It must be a real love because I have made several junk journals with its theme.

I sometimes realize the dangers  of metaphorical connections. Sometimes a cup of coffee should just be a beverage, not a vessel for bridging the time/space continuum... I have a huge stash in my coffee cupboard---- too much really! 

But hey, check out  the 3 mugs I made with old photos of this house when Daddy began to save it, our old barn just about to crumble to the ground, and a July party in my gramma's kitchen over 50 years ago...  I also usually make a mug for each high school grad as my gift and several others with cherished photos (new grandma, special cousins, gardens and aunts...) . I really love to order them from Walmart.              

Whimsy and Hugs!


Miss Merry said...

What a cheerful post! I come from a long line of tea drinkers and was first introduced to coffee when I was a 15 year old waitress at the L & K. We started the urns at 5:30 a.m. and had at least 2 commercial urns filled all day long. I loved the smell of fresh percolating coffee in the morning, but detested the taste.

I was late to the party. I did not start drinking coffee until my thirties when cute coffee shops with flavored coffees started to pop up. Now that I am an old lady I drink it straight LOL. And I bet I am on the high end of your classmates coffee for the day totals!

Your collection of cups is wonderful.

Meanwhile, I am glad someone is using the totes to organize. I now have a room full of them and still don't have a plan to start sorting photos. I am not exaggerating the quantity I ordered either . . .

Ginny Hartzler said...

I just loved reading your coffee history stories! So you have this Keurig now? So do we. But your home is amazing, you have so many things I love. Especially these shelves that only come a few inches out from the wall, where you have stored jars and tins. Where did you get it? So space saving, I would love to find one! And your owl mug is so pretty, too. I love the little houses on your mantel, and especially the large picture above it! Is this a photo you took? I would love to know the story of it.

Unknown said...

Those photo mugs are awesome. I need to order some. So many good memories over a cup of coffee. Coffee just brings people together doesn't it? And you're so right, coffee smells and sounds like hospitality. I liked that.

Ginny Hartzler said...

Thanks so much for answering my questions!!

Jenny the Pirate said...

I do love the ritual of my single morning mugful of strong, hot, fresh coffee. It makes me feel connected to my roots too, as my mother was from Louisiana and she, and my grandparents and aunts and uncles, all drank the Community coffee that has a flavor like no other coffee. I use Cafe La Llave espresso grind made in a French press and that does it for me each morning. xoxo

racheld said...

at least 3---solid black and heavy. Eight O'clock Columbian Peaks in my little teal-blue Keu ig (the key between "Q" and "S" is on leave at the moment and will come back to duty when the pout subsides). I look fo wa d to that obust cup steaming into the big mug, and awake thinking of that scent and taste to begin the day.

I've loved the lovely invento y of you coffee supplies, and ma vel at the skill you possess to put wo ds on a page in such exquisite pictu es. simply sumptuous ph ases and images. moi e anon when the ascal etu ns. come see me on Leah Haley's FB page.