My first teapot, a gift from my Aunt Esther, resides in my bedroom, tucked into a shelf with silk daisies sprouting from its top. I don’t think my aunt planned on the purchase, but who can resist the pleading green eyes of an eight-year-old asking for a teapot instead of toys? The pot, a plain brown Sadler from England, began a lifetime love of these wonderful vessels. Teapots became my well cherished gifts for Mother’s Day, Christmas, birthdays and anniversaries.
The collection rotates through the house with special holiday teapots making seasonal appearances. My prized tea set, brought back from Japan by my grandfather in the 1920s, includes a gilded dragon teapot that captured my childish imagination and enchants me still. My teapots, purchased more for their uniqueness than their values, hold warm memories as well as hot tea.
Back in 2002, my son (then sixteen) played a role playing game called Dark Age of Camelot with a guild filled with a remarkable mix of people. The guild suspended its eighteen-year-old or older requirement for members for Paul because they liked him so much. This eclectic group, with members from all around the United States and a few people from other countries, decided to host a LAN party in Shreveport, Louisiana and included Paul in their invitation. We decided to tag along and use the long weekend as a mini-vacation.
Shreveport’s museums, rose garden, and casinos kept us fairly busy, but the antique shops and curio boutiques lured me into their potpourri havens. One shop, in particular, captivated me with its fantasy displays of dolls, stuffed animals, gnomes and faeries. Two statues beguiled me so much that I made a rare and indulgent purchase.
Of course, my two faeries multiplied into a collection. The warrior set, that stands determined to battle, arrived one Christmas. Others appeared for special occasions while some flew into our home and perched on shelves and bookcases for no reason except to give me pleasure.