The Key To Happiness

by Angela (Oh She Glows) on September 22, 2009

is not to put it off for a later date!

Our William Ashley’s china arrived yesterday via Purolator.


We were really excited to unpack it until we discovered how it was packed…

In a hay stack. :( We filled 4 garbage bags of this stuff!


Our supervisor:

IMG_6362 copy

It took us 2 hours to unpack everything, check it, count it, and then clean up the huge mess!


While we were unpacking, we had the when are we going to use it discussion.


You may remember my Use Your Good Towels rant a couple months ago.

We already decided that our china would indeed be reserved for special occasions. But we aren’t going to limit its’ use to holidays only. For example, if we have a nice dinner together, we might use the china. (We’re crazy like that!).

However, we also got some stainless steel cutlery sets that we are in love with. And we started a hot debate about what they would be used for.

I said I wanted to use them on a daily basis, while Eric disagreed and said we should keep the cutlery for special occasions only.

Then I got thinking about my Good Towel post.

And I was like, ‘Why shouldn’t we use our gorgeous cutlery right now? We have been using mismatched hand me downs since university (it is honestly horrid what we use!!!). And we have been waiting for so long to have a nice set.’

But Eric’s reply was that it would no longer be special if we used it everyday.

So I pulled out the what if I died card with a big grin on my face, ‘What if I died next month and you had to live with the fact that I never did get to use the cutlery I loved so much?’

Eric, grinning back, ‘Well I would march that over-priced cutlery right back to William Ashley’s and get my money back!’

Quite cheeky isn’t he? ;) We had a good laugh.


So the debate goes on.

What do you think? Should nice cutlery be saved for special use or do you take the ‘you only live once’ approach with it?

I have always, always been a ‘save special things for special use’ kind of person. But more and more I am starting to toss that idea out the window. So many times I have not used things that make me happy because I am scared of ruining it. Would it really be that big of a deal if we did accidentally ruin a set? Probably not. They were expensive but not that expensive that we couldn’t replace it at some point down the road.

I say use it. We’ve been using our good towels for months now and have never looked back! They make me happy every single day. The only drawback I see with using it is that it has to be hand washed (well, it says it is dish washer safe but I wouldn’t trust it). I hate hand washing dishes, so that might be a pain in the butt. Decisions, decisions…


Better three hours too soon, than one minute too late. ~William Shakespeare

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{ 70 comments… read them below or add one }

Deb September 22, 2009 at 3:19 pm

You do only live once. Use it and enjoy it. Your taste will probably change as the years go by, so why not use it now while you still like it? What are you saving it for? Every day is a special day!


haya September 22, 2009 at 3:20 pm

if it’s stainless, i say use it. silver you save for special occassions because it’s a pain in the ass to polish + you can’t put it in the dishwasher. but stainless is fine to use all the time (and put in the dishwasher)!


Angela (Oh She Glows) September 22, 2009 at 3:21 pm

Yup I agree. We purposely did not buy silverware for that reason.


kay (eating machine) September 22, 2009 at 3:23 pm

my parents use their wedding china allll the time; holidays, birthdays (which when you consider we do US and canadian thanksgiving, easter, christmas, new years, mothers day, fathers day, and six birthdays means at least once a month)plus other random nice dinners.
And, in the 38 years they’ve been married only one plate has been broken.
by me.

i’m still trying to get my fiance on board with getting wedding china-his parents were they never use it types, so he doesn’t see the point.

use it!


Kayzilla September 22, 2009 at 3:23 pm

Why not reserve it for a weekly dinner basis? Kind of a compromise: still “special” but used on a more frequency that you’ll get to use it before you die. :D


Susan September 22, 2009 at 3:25 pm

Is this a boy thing? Because my boyfriend is the exact same way! He bought the car of his dreams last year, and two days after he bought it I caught him driving his old beat up car he planned to get rid of. When I asked him about it he said he didn’t want to take his new car out because it was raining!! But what’s the point in having the damn car if you never drive it!?

I’m a “use it” type person. My belongings never last as long that way, but I at least get my money’s worth ;)


Suzanne September 22, 2009 at 3:26 pm

I say use the cutlery! I see the argument for using fragile things for special occasions (I have my grandmother’s china packed away) but cutlery, you should definitely enjoy every day. I agree with Deb, use it while you still like it!


Dotsie September 22, 2009 at 3:28 pm

I used to be a “save for special occasions” girl, too, but…no more. We only live once–your hard-earned money was used to buy it, so make great use of it! Get your money’s worth!

Loooove the Sketchie pictures, as usual! :-D


Ruth September 22, 2009 at 3:28 pm

I am de-lurking to make my first comment. First, I do love the blog!! Thanks for all the great updates. Second, USE IT ALL RIGHT NOW! When I married we decided to skip the fancy traditional china to get great everyday china that we could use immediately. Why buy something you will basically store for most of the year? Here in America there seems to be so much consumerism, which is really sad. I know I don’t want my house to be a big storage unit. I want to enjoy the things I have.


Nikki T September 22, 2009 at 3:29 pm

USE the cutlery!!
I am totally a ‘save special things for special times’ kind of person too, but I’ve been trying to change that about myself.
Each day you are alive is special (although it may not seem that way some days!), so use the nice things…
I was always afraid to ruin those special items too, but now I kind of try and look at it in a “Better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all” perspective.
If it gets ruined…save up and replace it!

USE the good cutlery (and put it in the dishwasher too!)


Sarah September 22, 2009 at 3:30 pm

Sorry Eric, but Angela wins. USEEE ITTTT. And pack up that old, mismatched stuff & donate it to a Goodwill or Salvation Army!


Jill September 22, 2009 at 3:32 pm

Use it! If you’re not using it you’re just storing it. Life is too short.


leatitia September 22, 2009 at 3:33 pm

Use it! :)


Abby September 22, 2009 at 3:33 pm

Definitely use it! Why pay so much money (or have other’s spend so much), on these things if you rarely get to enjoy them! I think you should use them and enjoy them everyday!


Jocelyn September 22, 2009 at 3:34 pm

I say use it for special weekend meals when you really get the time to make soemthing special and you can both enjoy it :)


Allison (Eat Clean Live Green) September 22, 2009 at 3:35 pm

Until you mentioned that it has to be hand washed, I was all for saying everyday.

Handwashing cutlery every day would be such a pain. I say special occasions only :)


Morgan September 22, 2009 at 3:37 pm

Use it! If you wait to use it, you just won’t. That’s how it happens! Like saving an amazing cookie or something so you can really enjoy it, and then it goes bad.
Enjoy it, and make up a reason to celebrate. My husband and I toast at every meal, and it feels like celebrating. It could as simple as getting in a good run, taking a cute picture of Sketchie or talking to a girlfriend you haven’t seen in awhile. No matter what, just celebrate!


Sarah September 22, 2009 at 3:39 pm

I say make it a happy medium. Don’t use it for EVERY thing, but reserve it for meals you all have together. That way it is sort of special but still gets used more often than special occasions ;-)


Maria September 22, 2009 at 3:39 pm

I say use it too! Why have it if you can’t use it! You never know what will happen in life, make the most of each day. Every day should be a special occasion!


Alyssa September 22, 2009 at 3:40 pm

alright, I have the solution. Angela…you get to take out a spoon, fork, and knife for yourself. can use whatever you please. when you have that special dinner,Eric can use the good cutlery….hahahaha..marriage is all about compromise! (but yes Angela, you will be the classy eater..sorry Eric.)


Kara September 22, 2009 at 3:41 pm

Just my own little story. We got beautiful stainless steel cutlery for our wedding, I stuck it in the china cabinet to save for special occasions…. and kept on using my not-so great looking ones I had. Then I thought, WHY I am I not using something I love and instead saving it for that RARE (VERY RARE) occasion when I get to use it for something special?! If you love it, USE IT! It will be special because you love it, regardless of how much you use it, you will still love it.

Just my 2 sense. ;)


Sarah @ The Foodie Diaries September 22, 2009 at 3:41 pm

Haha I love Eric’s response. I say use it for FREQUENT special meals :) That just means you have an excuse to make special meals alllll the time!


Whitney September 22, 2009 at 3:42 pm

I say use it.

If I could talk that is. I am ROFL at Eric’s comment. hahahahha


rhodeygirl September 22, 2009 at 3:43 pm

I would save it. You will NOT enjoy hand washing all that cutlery after a while, and it will be nice to have a complete and perfect set when you host a holiday for many!


Christina September 22, 2009 at 3:44 pm

I say use it! It’s meant to be used daily and still look great. Plus, it’s not like it will be easily broken like good china. Maybe make a rule that it can’t be taken out of the house (for packed lunches or whatever).


Maria September 22, 2009 at 3:48 pm

USE IT! Seriously, it’s just cutlery (and dinnerware)! Think of the joy it’ll bring you.

Or, a litmus test: what will bring greater overall joy – to only bring it out on special occasions, or to see it everyday?


Nora September 22, 2009 at 3:54 pm

I can only think of the Friends episode where Chandler breaks all Monica’s china.


Bree September 22, 2009 at 4:52 pm

hahaha…LOVE that episode…”Guess I’ll be the one who dies first” :-P


Amy September 22, 2009 at 3:56 pm

I don’t get china to be honest… My Gramma was shocked when I didn’t register for a china set. Why have all this classy stuff, only to have it sit in the cabinet?

My ancient set of Corel (hand me down from hubby’s gramma) is functional, albeit, UGLY! :)

We got some nice silverware and some gorgeous high end pots for wedding gifts that I haven’t used yet, not because I’m afriad to… its just that we have fully functioning pots and silverware right now so I don’t feel the need to open the new ones ‘just because’.

Maybe I’m just too simple!


mountain girl September 22, 2009 at 4:00 pm

Use it, use it USE IT!!! We have used our wedding cutlery every day for the past 4 1/2 years and it’s just awesome to feel something good and well-made in our mouths, rather than something cheapy and mismatched. Also, I keep my table set all the time, even though we have a small kitchen without a formal dining area. It just looks pretty.


Sara D. September 22, 2009 at 4:02 pm

I have two sets of cutlery. One set for special occasions only (that I’ve used once in the seven years we’ve been married) and another set that we use everyday. If you are still using the mismatched stuff from college I say use it. Cutlery lasts a long time and its difficult to break, chances are you’ll be sick of the pattern long before they wear out.


JessicaR September 22, 2009 at 4:09 pm

One vote for “use it” here! I doubt any of your visitors will hate you for using the china without them. :)


insideiamdancing September 22, 2009 at 4:12 pm

I am torn! If you use it all the time, it’s not ‘special’…it’s just everyday dishes. BUT, why wait? LIfe’s short! Maybe you can compromise and use it every weekend to just make the weekend a little bit more special!


Erica September 22, 2009 at 4:12 pm

If they require special washing I would think twice before using them every day. That being said I have 4 beautiful jadite bowls that I use every day and hand wash after every use. I just feel so happy eating my yogurt out of them. I also thing the size is just so much better than modern dishes. So there. I say if it is worth it to you to wash then it is best to use what you love.


Alicia September 22, 2009 at 4:14 pm

When my husband and I got engaged I fell madly in love with this the waterford seahorse collection with a platinum band and I was bound and determined to use it every day. Why buy it if you aren’t going to use it. Then we remembered that you can’t put metal in the microwave. So we had to buy a couple place settings of regular dishes. AND to top it off, because our house is sooo darn tiny we don’t have anywhere to put them since we got the every day settings, so they are still in their boxes in a closet in the spare bedroom. BUMMER!


Kristi September 22, 2009 at 4:24 pm

Use it so you wear it out before you get sick of it! Get your money’s worth and when the time comes that you need a new set you will prbably be glad as I am sure your taste will have changed by then!



Nicole September 22, 2009 at 4:32 pm

It is true! You only live once, and if it makes you happy every day, then do it!! I’ve never been the type to buy something nice, and stare at it! Use it!


tami September 22, 2009 at 4:33 pm

use it, everyday!


Madeline @ Greens and Jeans September 22, 2009 at 4:44 pm

Definitely use it! I’ve always been a fan of using the things that are special to you every day because you get to be reminded of how special they are to you… every day!


Bree September 22, 2009 at 4:53 pm

hhmmm…i say COMPROMISE…if you use it all the time and Eric isn’t happy, that’s no good either…so use it MORE of the time…and kind of lower the bar on “special occaisons” lol…like, once a week for “date night” or Sundays or weekends…along with holidays, birthdays, etc….or something like that :-)


Cynthia (It All Changes) September 22, 2009 at 5:00 pm

For me unless cutlery is pure silver like my grandmothers it should be used all the time. Who doesn’t want nice cutlery to go with their regular target plates. Hunni and I like to use it with out Corelle dishes on funny placemats. Makes it feel like ours.


Mellissa September 22, 2009 at 5:21 pm

I say use it!! I have a set of china that I have had since college that I have never used. Not once. But, I have used my nice set of silverware :) I may just have cereal in a china bowl tonight.


Chloe September 22, 2009 at 5:44 pm

Use it! You can never tell the future but at least you know how you can affect the present. It’s nice to use good cutlery when eating, and since you have the means to I say why not?

Also, think about this – you guys will most likely have kids eventually, and when they come around you probably won’t be using the nice cutlery for a while. Better to use it now while you still can!


Alisa - Frugal Foodie September 22, 2009 at 5:51 pm

No question, use it. But, I am not a fan of having a ton of stuff that I rarely or never use. If it is for “display only” then it doesn’t belong in my house, just seems wasteful!


Kim September 22, 2009 at 5:55 pm

Use it!! I’ve saved so many nice things for a “special occasion” only miss out on enjoying them. Now I think that every day we wake up is a special occasion. If anything, schedule a “date night” once a week and break out the china for a special dinner. Celebrating your marriage is always reason enough. :)


Courtney September 22, 2009 at 6:24 pm

Use it, and then go buy something else even fancier for the “special” occasions! Hee hee!!

Adventures in Tri-ing


Janna (Just Flourishing) September 22, 2009 at 6:31 pm

Yeah, I say use it! Why do you have a nice set of cutlery only to use it a couple times a year. I think the nice cutlery should be for everyday… you can always get a second pair of even nicer cutlery for those really special times.

I’m always a save it for a special occasion type of girl too… but I’m also starting to change my mind. Life’s to short to not use your nice towels and cutlery.


Jessica J September 22, 2009 at 6:39 pm

Use it! You take so much care to make your food georgous, nice plates will make it even better and more enjoyable! :-)


Hayley September 22, 2009 at 6:46 pm

Use it! My boyfriend has a gorgeous set of cutlery that we use every day, but unfortunately he says they can’t go in the dishwasher (I’m pretty sure that it can, but he thinks they’ll get ruined) so we hand wash them. We also bought some china last year, and we do use it for “special dinners”; we don’t save it for any such occasion as we would normally dine out. :)


Michelle September 22, 2009 at 6:51 pm

Use it and put it in the dishwasher. If it says it’s dishwasher safe, it is dishwasher safe. Don’t worry about it.


WalkerEvents September 22, 2009 at 6:58 pm

Use it!!! We registered for a white set of china (Gordon Ramsey) and then salad plates and big charger plates from a fancier set of china, so we use the white stuff every day, and mix the fancier non-dishwasher safe stuff for special meals.

Also, I noticed that you have some china with what looks like platinum around the edge.. watch out for it in the dishwasher, our Wm Ashley salesperson said that it can wear off.


Shannon September 22, 2009 at 7:00 pm

We only get one life to live, so I say use everything that you just got, really if you think about it everyday is a special occasion=)


island girl September 22, 2009 at 7:14 pm

Hey Angela! I just read that you’re loving the Maca Powder you’ve been having and I was just wondering what you’ve been finding it’s doing for you? I took Maca for a couple months a while back and I really didn’t find it did much for me..? Maybe I just wasn’t noticing it? Thanks!


Jolene September 22, 2009 at 7:25 pm

I remember being a little girl and my mom had this really pretty perfume that she gave me because I loved it so much. I put it in my room and never once used it, and vowed that I would wear it on my high school graduation. Well, one day in probably grade 7 or 8 I found that it had gone bad. I had never used it.


Amy September 22, 2009 at 7:27 pm

I would definitely use it at least once a week…for me it would be Sunday dinner. I think it’s pointless to have “nice” things and only enjoy them a few times a year.


Becky September 22, 2009 at 8:16 pm

I used to be a ‘save for a special occasion’ kind of girl, but now I say go for it! Every meal together should be a special occasion with eachother right?! It would be a shame to only get to enjoy those nice dishes a couple times a year.


sarah (ghost world) September 22, 2009 at 8:39 pm

i say USE IT AAAND trust the dishwasher. life is too short!


maria September 22, 2009 at 8:47 pm

If you really don’t trust the dishwasher and insist on hand washing them, I’d vote for special occasions. But, if you don’t mind hand washing them then have at it. I’d use them everyday. After all, they were bought to be used… not to look pretty in a drawer, right?

And I’m going back and reading your towel post because you have peaked my interest.


Courtney September 22, 2009 at 9:19 pm

I say use it!! Why not? I read someone quote their grandmother and she said she always set the table “as if the president was coming.” How cute! :)


mmclaughlin September 22, 2009 at 9:28 pm

I have really nice stainless steel cutlery, and we use it every day (I also wash it in the dishwasher) and I’m so glad we use it!
Of course, I also have gorgeous wine glasses that I bought at the Waterford plant in Ireland that I save for “special occasions”, and we don’t have China because my husband is in the military and I don’t trust the government to move it w/out breaking it… so I guess I have no consistency when it comes to that :)


Laura @ Backstage Pass to Health & Happiness September 23, 2009 at 12:00 am

What gorgeous china! I say go ahead and start using the flatware :-) Life is far too short.

Backstage Pass to Health & Happiness


Em September 23, 2009 at 1:35 am

I went to read your Good Towels post that I hadn’t read before, and something broke my heart. Right there, in the middle of that post, you write “Don’t wait until next month, next year, [b]or when you are 40[/b] to do something you WANT to do.”

I was devastated to find out that 40 is the cut-off age for you too! It seems that everyone feels 40 is the age where you “die” a little, if not completely. I find it sad that as women strive to feel good in their skin, 40 is still the age where it’s too late to enjoy life. People are so fearful of age nowadays, so ashamed of growing old. Wrinkles used to signify wisdom, now they signify expiration date.

Where I come from, we say life starts at 40. For one, I’m looking forward to it. I have a lot more new cutlery to buy and use before and after 40. So I think you should use your cutlery now, and get another when you turn 40. A better one ;)


Milca September 23, 2009 at 2:04 am

For once I actually agree with Eric but instead of holidays only maybe special occasions as well.


Oxidaisy September 23, 2009 at 2:17 am

The key to happiness is to not put it off for a later date! You said it yourself! I agree with all the other arguments: you only live once, what if you hate it in 30 years? and think about how you will feel if you get to buy a ‘special’ china again!
What truly counts, in my opinion, is that you deserve to use your ‘good’ stuff, you are worth it. You hate the mismatched things, so go for it! Every day is special. And about holidays and other special days: they are special like they are: they don’t need china to make them spcial. And if you don’t feel like hand washing that day: use the other stuff. Or put them in the dishwasher, if it’s safe they won’t get scratched if you only put the in the dishwasher every now and then.


Mimi (Damn the Freshman 15) September 23, 2009 at 3:16 am

Use it! I sometimes goof like that when it comes to food. Like “this chocolate is special! I’m only going to dip into it on special occasions.” Well by the time I get around to it, it’s old and crumbly. Carpe diem!


Jess September 23, 2009 at 3:36 am

I’d say just use them whenever the mood strikes. It doesn’t have to be every day but special occasions are never as often as you think. I don’t have any nice china (not really my thing) but I collect different fun dishes of all shapes and sizes and I use them all the time, because it just makes life more fun.

Also, if you can’t agree on the cutlery (although, I say use it every day, it’s just cutlery) why don’t you just go to Ikea and buy a cheap, but quality set? We own two sets of ‘Data’ and everyday I still find them refreshing and exciting to use and they cost next to nothing.


Minta September 23, 2009 at 3:56 am

I say use it. Because I like the French idea of making the whole eating a meal together classy and special. Every meal should be special even if its just a toasted sandwich!

Sorry Eric!


Jenna September 23, 2009 at 9:25 am

Use it you only live once.
Growing up I remeber every Sunday we sat in the dinning room and used the GOOD CHINA not many people can say they got their money’s worth, but I think my MOM can !!
So now I try to use mine all the time no matter what the occasion !!


Jess September 23, 2009 at 12:51 pm

Like Mimi, I too do this with FOOD … I buy gorgeous strawberries or blueberries and then ‘save’ them … what the heck? They go bad before I can find a time that’s ‘special’ enough to eat them. Finally, this summer, I just eat what I want. If that means a whole package of strawberries, who cares? I’m enjoying it!

I say use your dishes. I grew up using SO much paper that I’m sick of using paper plates – not to mention it’s not so great for the environment. I’d much rather get a REAL plate and have a meal and then have to wash it than just throw out a paper plate. (Hubby doesn’t quite get it yet.) I’ve actually thought about keeping a REAL plate and fork in my desk at work (since I work nights), so I can feel like I’m having a REAL dinner.

Maybe don’t use it all the time, but using it will make you happy and feel special.


Jess (What's Normal, Anyways?) September 27, 2009 at 4:41 pm

Use it! Everyday that we have is special in someway. Additionally, just think-if you had a crummy day, just think how much you would look forward to using your pretty silverware when you got home? (or had finished cooking dinner, etc). USE IT!


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