Tuesday, 8 October 2013

My Inheritance

I realise that it is unusual to get your inheritance in advance, but that is sort of what happened to me today. My dad has been slowly transitioning to living in the UK permanently over the past couple of years, all in the name of love (which is really, really nice). This year he emptied his flat in Canada, and had the items he wished to retain shipped over here to the UK. Only he does not have room for all these items and has chosen to give some of them to my brothers and I now.

When I was growing up there were a couple of items that I loved, and one in particular that it always was said would be mine some day. Well some day happened today. Now this item might seem rather odd to many people, especially for a ten year old girl to fall in love with. Be that as it may, I am really happy to have it in my home now.

Doesn't everyone want a copper and brass mainmast lantern salvaged from a sailing ship?


It stands about two feet tall, and can be taken apart, as you can see in the photos above. I used to polish it when I was younger and was enamoured with the fact that there was still a wick in it. But to answer the question, no I never filled it with kerosene and lit it. And yes, the girls are already asking if they can do that. I suppose I will have to give it a polish again. Not sure if I am going to enjoy that bit as much as I used too.

The next item was my grandmother's and I fell in love with it when visiting her in my teens. My grandmother told me she had promised it to a friend, but that turned out to not be true and it went to my father, and now it comes to me.


It is a sewing table, and it isn't in great shape. There is damage to the wood, and some damage to the interior too. But I don't care. I shall see if there is anything I can do to help keep the wood from drying out any more than it already has so that it doesn't lose more of its inlay. I am not sure where I am going to put it, as we are not big on space here, but I do already envisage keeping all my perle in that big conical compartment in the middle.

There were more items, all of which I had no idea I would be getting today.


From left to right: 9" candlesticks made by my great-grandfather, ivory dominoes that were mysteriously stored in the sewing table, two snuff boxes (the top one I loved when I was a child; it is incredibly tactile), and glassware that was my grandmother's. The top ones are so thin, and have a wonderful shape. I want to fill them with chocolate mousse. The bottom ones have been hand painted. (There are more of both these glasses but I didn't unpack them all to show you. I believe there are six of each.)

Finally, there were items that I had given my dad over the years, mostly from my travels, which he no longer has space for. These were a nice trip down memory lane for me as I often bought for other people and then after the fact wished I had bought one for myself as well.


Clockwise from top left: A bent wood box from Alaska, a spice holder from Madras (Chennai) India, a birch bark wood container from British Columbia, a completely random huge 15" hoop my dad had and we have no idea where it came from but I will have it, thank you very much, a box with a silver panel from Kusadasi, Turkey, and a hand painted little bone container which I think I bought in either Yalta or Odessa, though it might have been Bulgaria. Who knows!

I shall potter about in the next few days and find homes for many of these items. I would like to have enjoy them, not have them remain in boxes in the back of some cupboard. I hope the girls develop their own favourites amongst the various things. I think that passing down items that invoke memories is the nicest of things. If these items have a family history that is all the more special. So a huge thanks to my dad today. He's brought back lots of happy  memories in me. It's a good feeling.

Susan

70 comments:

  1. How lovely to receive them now :-)

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  2. What a lovely haul of treasures from your dad!
    My mum used a wood balm called Bald's Original for an old piece of furnitures she was trying to save! Don't know if it will be any good for your special sewing table!

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  3. How lovely! I love the sewing table, and yikes, ivory dominos, very special. I love the lamp especially, clearly you were alway destined to journey at sea.

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  4. That post made my eyes mist over...I love that you have family items with history, I too have some things from my grandmother, whom I adored and some are on display others not so much because they are too fragile. I too also hope my kids develop a love of family things.

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  5. What lovely treasures! And I think it's so nice you've got them earlier that would usually be the case :)

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  6. What wonderful heirlooms! Like Claire, my eyes also misted over somewhat - some of my most precious possessions are the ones that belonged to my grandmother (my wedding ring being the most precious!) That ships lamp is fabulous! Rx

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  7. What treasure. It is so nice to receive objects that have meaning and stories attached to them. Di x

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  8. I loved seeing all these treasures. That sailing ship lantern is absolutely gorgeous. And the sewing table- it would be completely worth having it restored. What a wonderful feature piece for your sewing space !

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  9. What beautiful things! I love having special antiques in my home too! Jxo

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  10. This is so nice from your dad. I took a silver box one day after my granddad passed away and I still love it and carry it with me.

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  11. I'm hoping a genie pops out of that lamp with his I'll give you three wishes routine - then all things will be mended, your sewing table finished and the house expanded to include a sewing room and ample space for these and more!

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  12. Polish and purr over your pretties. The girls will follow suit. Its funny what we love at 10...sets our whole lives up, often.

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  13. Heh heh. My Grandma (not wee Granny) went into a home last year and I got my inheritance. Her button box (she is Aberdonian so it is huge - they chuck nothing! *g*) and her barometer! I fell in love with it when I was also about 10. It doesn't work anymore but I love it nonetheless. Great goodies for you!

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  14. how wonderful to have them now while he is there to answer any questions you may have about the items you have "inherited" xx enjoy x

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  15. Your grandfather made the candlesticks?!? I'm a little bit in awe. Those are always extra special pieces of childhood and family history right there.

    I hope you have as much fun watching your girls find their favourite treasures as you had with them as a girl.

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  16. How wonderful to get such treasures! Definitely do use them all and enjoy them - even if you fill all the containers with quilting notions!

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  17. What lovely treasures and how wonderful to inherit them without having to lose your precious dad :)

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  18. Lovely to get these treasures and how beautiful they all are!

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  19. how lovely to enjoy these things now with both your father and your own family. Particularly love the sewing table and the dominoes. Family history is so important to our own identity I feel. (but then I am also a genealogy bore as well as all my other dabblings)

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  20. What a lot of lovely memories for you, enjoy,

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  21. It's so cool to get things given with meaning you've admired for so long. I've had some lovely treasures passed my way over the years from one relative in particular.

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  22. What a wonderful post.My siblings and I have quite a few things from our parents - some I chose too, when I was small, others I never knew existed.

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  23. Dad said he had a big duffel bag full of cash for me...oh dear maybe I shouldn't have mentioned it to you! :-)

    Happy polishing,

    Big (annoying) Bro

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  24. Ooh treasure! Does most of your family live here in the UK now?

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  25. You have received some real treasures there. Love that lantern.

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  26. What wonderful treasures holding so many memories. How nice that your Dad can enjoy you and your girls enjoying them now.

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  27. It's great to get 'inherited' items, they have so much history

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  28. Wow! Not at all the traditional route, but how cool is that to share your inheritance with your Dad? You guys can relive memories, etc. Super. Enjoy them :)

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  29. Nice goodies for you; nice clutter-free space for your Dad ;)

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  30. First I want to say that I love your blog.
    And secondly I think that your sewing table is in fact a games table, a table to play cards, chess and other games...

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  31. Wow, how lovely to have them now, such treasures xx

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  32. Oooh, what a fab haul! I think the girls need to embrace polishing the lamp, after all, it might be their inheritance one day ;o)

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  34. Lovely to have little treasures from home! Enjoy!!

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  48. Those are nice treasures! More than wealth, our family’s heirloom represents our history and memories, and so there’s a sense of sentimentality when we receive them. I do hope your kids develop a sense of appreciation for these things.

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