Even though the name of my blog is Happy Talk, this time of year is always bittersweet for me.  Today is the 26th anniversary of my sweet Daddy’s death – he had a heart attack while working at the polls on Election Day, 1992 – and it’s just a couple of weeks after my Mom’s birthday and the anniversary of her death (only 4 days apart).  While I am sad that I don’t get to see and talk to and hug my parents any more, I am grateful for the happy years I spent with them and for the many reminders I have of them.  I have clothing, furniture, books, and decorative items that were theirs, I have the many years of life lessons and favorite (and not so favorite) sayings that flash through my head on a daily basis, and of course I have photographs.  I love having those tangible reminders of my parents around the house!

During the Generation2Generation crop last month, one of our members, Lynn Vail, posted a couple of pages of the Royal Doulton figurines that she had inherited, and that got me thinking about my mom’s collection of china demitasse cups.  For as long as I can remember, Mom had these pretty little cups of all different sizes, shapes, and patterns that only got brought out when she hosted a ladies’ lunch or some other special party.  Mom was a big sucker for china, from Wedgwood to Fiestaware, and she loved finding a pretty or interesting new little cup.  She also loved to entertain, mostly because it meant she could use her china and crystal and silver!  My sister and I were always called to duty when the ladies were coming for lunch.  Our jobs included doing some of the advance prep work/cooking, setting the table, and serving.  Mom’s go-to dessert for these special events was Chocolate Pots de Creme.  Not only was it divinely sinfully chocolaty, but her pretty demitasse were the perfect serving pieces for this delightfully rich dessert.  She even had tiny little silver demitasse spoons, which made you have to savor every dainty bite of deliciousness.

You’ve probably guessed by now that Kim and I had the tasks of making the Pots de Creme, pouring it into the cups, adding the dollops of whipped cream, and serving the dessert.  Even though we handled those cups and saucers a lot, we were forbidden to wash or dry them.  Mom could not stand it if her guests tried to clear the table or, God forbid, wash the dishes!  If anything got chipped or broken, Mom wanted to be the one responsible for it!  That was fine with us, of course.  I always loved those little cups, and I loved watching Mom unwrap each one before washing them prior to using them.  It was like getting out favorite Christmas ornaments – she would tell us where she got the cup, when she got it, who it had belonged to, or whatever she knew about its provenance.  I wish I had paid more attention to some of those details…

Anyway, back to the crop weekend…like I said, I was inspired.  I moved things around in my laundry room so that I could get the cabinet door open and reach the box of demitasse cups, then I carefully carried them upstairs, set up a ‘black box’, and photographed each one.  Then I spent all afternoon googling for information about the cups, based on the info found on the bottom of the cups and saucers.  I added each photo and whatever info I found into my Forever account, and then I made a page of my favorite cups.  Of course, my favorite cups turned out to be the ones that had little or no information about them, save for a few little notes that Mom had written and attached to the bottom of the saucers!  I used the same Blueprint (#p2PFamilyReunionBP) that Lynn used, and just duplicated it so that I could put the photos of the cups on one page and its provenance on the facing page.  The next time I need a Mom/demitasse fix, I can just look at my page or my Forever album.  Or I could make some Pots de Creme….

#p2PFamilyReunionBP Vintage Memories Mega Bundle by Lucky Girl Creative Everyday 4 Paper Pak and Chalkboard Collection by Cottage Arts Canvas Colors Paper Pack #1 by DesignerDigitals Fonts: Gabriola, KG Manhattan Script


Bonus:  Here’s the Pots de Creme, as we made it.  And no, the eggs were not cooked – it was the 60s!  And instant coffee – ick!  But it does need a bit of coffee, and if you are worried about consuming raw-ish eggs, add the yolks at the beginning.  It’s really good!  And I don’t remember how many little cups this made…

Glitter Festive Fall by Cottage Arts
Le Chef Mega Bundle by Little Feet Digital Designs
Canvas Colormix #4 and 16; Canvas Cardstocks #2 and 17
Font: KG Ten Thousand Reasons Alt

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42 Responses to Blog: Remembering Good Times

  1. Sandy Norman says:

    Do you need to include the coffee in the recipe? It doesn’t like me but this recipe sounds yummy.

  2. Ruth Rowe says:

    What beautiful memories and wonderful idea to preserve some of those memories. Thank you for sharing.

  3. Jan Vomacka says:

    Jan, what a wonderful story and loved the pages. I’m sure you’re going to document the remaining cups too! 🙂 I so wish I had asked my grandmother more questions (AND written down the answers to those I did ask). What a wonderful treasure all those old memories are. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Linda Foote says:

    Karen, thank you so much. I loved your book, I cannot wait to show my Mom and my sisters. I would never have thought of doing a book on our china, thanks Jan for sharing your story and your pictures.

  5. Terry Vachowski says:

    Oh my goodness! I love this, Jan! And Karen’s book is wonderful too! I have had the top shelf of our built in cabinet on my mind. So many piece of my grandmother’s glassware, with no stories. At least I could photograph them so when they have to go I won’t feel so guilty. Thanks for the story and the inspiration!

  6. Linda DeLaughter says:

    Thanks for the recipe, dear Jan! Maybe we can make it in February in B’ham! But I will definitely make it before then for my family! Thanks also for the beautiful trip down memory lane!

  7. Jan says:

    Yum! You are so welcome!

  8. Ann Gulledge says:

    We served Pots de Creme at our wedding rehearsal dinner in 2005 and everyone loved it! Thanks for the memories and the recipe!

  9. Caroline says:

    Jan, thanks for the blog. Today would have been my 45th wedding anniversary had things gone well. My -ex passed away this past year and it makes me think I should photograph what I still have from way back then.

  10. Lisa Purrington says:

    I love these ideas – my daughter has a wonderful collection that her grandmother started when she had her 4th birthday. 30 plus years later it is still housed in my china cabinet as her family is still moving and relocating for job reasons. I’m sure it won’t be long and I will be shipping these all to her. I think I will make a book for her to send with it. Thanks for the ideas!

  11. lvail@telus.net says:

    Hi Jan
    Glad you were inspired by my page! Love yours!
    I need to do another set for some of my China!
    Off to look at Karen’s.

    PS I lost my daddy to a heart attack Dec. 27, 1971. He was 51. I had my mummy till their Anniversary in 2014. She was 94.
    Hugs to you.

  12. Charlotte Plott says:

    Jan, thank you for sharing the precious memories of your parents. They certainly did a great job raising you and Kim
    Your idea of using the black box and taking the photos was just what I needed to know about. My items are wedding gifts (silver items and crystal pieces) from long ago and as the saying goes “your kids don’t want your stuff”. Now though, I will take pictures and create a page as you did. So timely, and so appreciate you sharing this idea. Love you dear Jan.

    • Jan says:

      I hear you, Charlotte! I need to do a lot more ‘treasures’ photos. I don’t feel as guilty about letting them go if I can still see them!

    • Caroline says:

      Charlotte, I have no kids, but I’ve got “the stuff”. This might be a great idea as I’ve begun thinking out what to do with all “the stuff” …or more realistically, what will my siblings do with all “the stuff”. Maybe take photos and then gradually begin to get rid of what I never use. Thanks to you and Jan both for the inspiration. My mom never kept “the stuff”, so no worries there.

  13. Ruth Bell says:

    What a lovely tribute! So happy that I have met you in person.

  14. karseneau says:

    Sounds simply divine! The raw eggs make it so rich and heavenly… my mouth is watering!

  15. Jean Young says:

    Jan, what beautiful memories and thank you for sharing. ❤️ your pages.

  16. Karen Bowser says:

    Jan, I am the mother that has the cup and saucer collection. I made a book of my collection. Here is the link

    Hope you can open it here.

  17. Lynn Mabe says:

    What a awesome memory! Memories with our parents mean a lot when they are gone. Hugs through this time of year.

  18. Mrsski33 says:

    Jan, this is a lovely tribute and a perfect way to recall those fond memories. Beautiful!

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