I have been blessed to find just one such special person. A while back Helga e-mailed me out of the blue and told me how much she enjoyed my blog. I e-mailed her back and over the last few months we've conversed from time to time via our e-mails.
Helga is in her eighties, she and her husband live in Arizona, she spent several years in Louisiana and considers herself a pretty good southern cook. She found me through the Recipe Swap on QVC's forums where I used to post recipes a lot. Helga said she never said much, but she read all of our crazy posts. So I'm assuming when I posted about my blog on there, she followed me over to the blog.
A week or so ago Helga - once again, out of the blue - e-mailed me and said she knew from my blog that I loved pretty things, and treasured them as well. She is downsizing and wanted to share a few of her treasures - doilies she bought in her travels - with me. I was stunned, and honored, and I replied and said I would love to receive such a precious gift and sent her my address. A few days later she e-mailed again and said that the package was on it's way, and would be here sometime the middle of next week.
I thought I'd get a little padded envelope with a couple of her treasured doilies. When the box arrived today, I couldn't believe my eyes!
This was a big box - about 12 x 16 x 8 inches high. And when I opened the box, and began pulling little bundles from it, well, tears filled my eyes. This sweet lady, whom I've never met other than via e-mails, sent me, in her words, a gift of affection. And my heart swelled with love for that sweet angel! (And here I go tearing up again!)
On top of the stack was a very southwestern towel as a little hello from her home state of Arizona. While this doesn't go with anything in my home, it will look just right in our camper, so it will go out there, and I'll remember Helga with each use.
Then there were the bundles. The linens were divided up in categories, each category wrapped in a plastic bag, and with a handwritten note explaining the history of the pieces.
The first bundle that I opened had these lovelies. A wide assortment of doilies, from white to ecru and every creamy color in between. Some are obviously well used and loved while others are less used, but just as beautiful. The doily at the very back appears to be of cotton thread, and is fairly heavy.
There was a stack of probably 10 to 12 of these - some in white, others in off white. They are only about 5-6 inches square, and I think they would be lovely under pretty candlesticks on a polished table. I'll save a few for that, but I can already picture some of them sewn onto pillows or cushions for a sofa. Hmmm, wonder whose sofa that could be???
This hankie was in the first batch, and it is so light and airy, and obviously has never been used before. The lacework around the edge is very delicate and fine - just beautiful!
The next batch had a precious apron that she made from a kit. It really reminded me of my young adult years in the early to mid 70's when the granny dresses were in. The apron looks like it's brand new, has a pretty bib, lots of lace, and is about 8 inches too long for me! I'll see if I can't fix that, though. I'm such an apron-o-holic, so this will be a lovely and very special addition to my collection.
Also in this bundle were a couple of lace pieces that Helga's mother wore on her dresses. Now, if Helga is in her eighties, and her mother wore these, how old must they be? The work on the lace is amazing, and I want to use these in some special way, but it will have to be very, very special!
And the next batch was full of pretty (NEW) fingertip towels and bread basket liners. There was even a postcard from Brussels Belgium, where she bought the linens in the late 1980's. It shows how the laces were made.
Both the yellow and pink will match my best china, so maybe I should use it more often so I can use these pretties, what do you think??? I love this little round doily. The detail is just amazing!
And this bread basket is gorgeous! It has obviously been used and well loved, but it will match my kitchen and every day dishes very well. This is definitely one of my favorite pieces in the lot. The first picture is the inside. You pull all those ties together and tie them, and there are pockets for rolls or bread.
And this is the back side - the side you would see on the outside. This is just so gorgeous!!!
On to another bundle. This one was full of what she called "miscellaneous stuff", but I just loved the tea towels. The blue ones will go in the kitchen, the white one will go in the guest bathroom. They are lovely!
There are two of these blue towels, and one had a tiny hole that Helga said was 'defective from age'. Helga - that's not a defect, it's love! A little hole only adds to the character. The stitching is all on the top - you cannot see it from the underside, which really amazes me!
This one is a large square, and is a very loose, light weave. It's also very soft.
And the last bundle - oh, be still my heart! Just take a look at this box of beautiful hankies!
There are five hankies, all folded nicely and all different. Helga wrote that her father's sister made these in Germany in the 1930's, and her mother had always treasured them, and never used them. Incredible!
In total there were almost 40 pieces. Most never used, but all very well cared for and treasured.
Helga, sweetie, you have touched me more than you will ever know by your thoughtfulness and kindness. I am so grateful for this 'gift of affection', and hope that you know that I will treasure each and every item in this box. You truly are an angel!