A Monday night dinner with friends. I had a little extra time, so why not make it special?

I rummaged  in the corner cupboard and found my mother’s Austrian desert set circa 1940: a lovely painted serving plate in warm pastels and four dessert plates. (One had a chip, so I made sure I got that one!) Perfect for displaying the day’s baking – marbeled brownies and sunflower seed cookies. Add some good coffee and cream, and suddenly our Monday night supper was pretty darn special.

Best of all, someone else came for dessert that night: my mom.

Here’s what I love about using old things — chips and all, they evoke memory and longing. Try finding those gifts at the mall.