Tuesday, 7 June 2016

Tray Jolie!

Pattypan over at Tarragon and Thyme  had an onteresting post recently, all about "The milk jug, the teapot, the dripping pot and the butter dish" - saying how these items have 'gone out of fashion. Fifty years ago when we were children, every kitchen had these, in daily use - but now... She asked if anyone else still had these things.

Well, yes I have 3 out of 4 [probably a sign of my age] 
I like to make my tea in a pot. 
I pour some of the milk from the 6 pint plastic bottle into a jug [I reckon the remainder will keep fresher in the fridge]
I keep my butter in a covered butter dish in a shady part of the kitchen - on top of the breadbin. It keeps well there and is usually soft enough to spread.
But no, I do not have a dripping pot. Maybe I should re-instate this one. I concluded that the first two items are part of a trio - teapot and milkjug really need a teatray. I have four which are in constant use. 

The biggest is my brown M&S tray - wedding present 1979. [I have two of these] It will comfortably hold two dinner plates, two dessert bowls, two glasses, and cutlery. i can prepare a meal for the two of us in the kitchen and carry it to wherever we are eating - dining table, garden... It will also carry a dozen coffee mugs, plus milk, sugar and biscuits, if we have a crowd of people round for a meeting. And it's useful if I have a lot of vegetable dishes to carry through for a formal meal in the dining room.

Next size down is my red reindeer tray. This holds all I need for Sunday tea in front of Songs of Praise on TV [teapot, milk jug, cups, plates, and a couple of plates of sandwiches and cakes - and two napkins to keep Bob's suit and my dress clean]
Then comes my long thin melamine tray. Elevenses, or an afternoon break - teapot or cafetiere, mugs, milk jug, and a couple of biscuits - exactly the right size for these.

Finally, smallest of all, my IKEA horse tray [much loved, and very faded now] This is mostly used first thing and last thing - only big enough for two mugs of early morning tea or late night drinking chocolate 

Is it just the older generation who use tea-trays? I am much less likely to spill the tea if balancing two mugs on a tray rather than one in each hand. I suppose Marie Kondo would suggest I downsize and only keep one tray -but which one? They all have their special purpose.


  1. I love trays, all sizes. Don't get rid of them! I don't have a dripping pot but do have the other three items.

  2. Hi Angela!
    When we radically downsized from our four-bedroom place to our wee place last year, everything had to go through the 'Marie Kondo' treatment.
    We manage fine with a long thin melamine tray that has two main uses; for taking mugs outside for drinks, or as an extended fruit bowl on shopping day and the day after.
    Our daughter was invited to choose what would be useful for her house before everything else went to the car booty or the charity shop. It's amazing what you can manage without when you have to!

  3. I just love the fact that we are all so different - the first two comments of the day show the two opposite ends of the spectrum on this one!

  4. Tea trays make sense. I often have to go several times to get items I couldn't carry at once. At my grandparents' house, we used to all have a round tray on Sunday evenings to eat our tea. I miss that. We have a milk jug but don't use this. The tea pot is in regular use!!x

  5. Same here, we have the full set, apart from the dripping pot - never seen one in use, even as a child in the very frugal 50's. All are in daily use, including the selection of trays. We also keep a sugar bowl topped up for guests (we don't take sugar but friends do). I do think it's an age or generation thing. We still eat at the dining table every meal, with it set properly(ish). When we were house hunting we saw so many houses that didn't have a table at all, unless you count the dumping ground used for computer and other stuff, that was obviously never used for eating.
    On a similar note, I recently bought a huge box of M&S "autumn leaves" design crockery including the same style of tray as yours, plus casserole dishes, teapot, milk jug and sugar bowl, for the equivalent of about £6, at a "brocante" in France. All were in perfect condition and I gave them to my dad's lady friend, who uses the set every day and many of her pieces have seen better days. The item she was most thrilled with was the tray, which she could never afford when it was current in the 80's. All I could afford then was a teatowel!

    1. I no longer have a sugar BOWL - but one of those dispenser jars with the tube that tips out 1 tsp at a time. Always ready for guests, but less likely to spill sugar in the cupboard.

  6. I don't have ANY of the four items in regular use! There are teapots, three of them, in the cupboard, and a couple of jugs which I do put milk in when we have a large gathering, but we use Clover instead of butter so that sits next to the toaster in its tub, and no dripping pot at all! Trays though? Definitely. We set the table every night and we have a couple of big trays which can hold glasses, salt and pepper, cutlery and a big jug of juice to carry it all through to the dining table. Wouldn't be without trays.

    On a separate note, a certain chrysanthemum plant which I was given last October in Norfolk is thriving and has been planted out in the troughs by the back door, where it seems to be enjoying the sunshine!

    1. So glad to hear that you have been able to "keep Mum" as they used to say in WW2.

  7. Marie Kondo would ask which of them spark joy, and it strikes me that all of them do, so you can keep them all! Penny Lxx

  8. What does Marie Kondo know anyway?lol
    I totally get your trays ☺


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