Grandma’s Desert Rose

Last week, we got busy with the demolition of our old bathtub in preparation for the plumber, who was coming to install the new bathtub.

Have you ever demoed a cast iron bathtub?

It’s not for sissies. But that’s a story for another day. I promise.

Anyway, with all of the pounding and wall-shaking that resulted from our first attempt at the demo (you read that correctly: FIRST attempt), I thought it might behoove us to remove the dishes from the kitchen cabinets, which are on the other side of the wall from the bathtub. The cabinets containing our everyday dishes (an homage to our time in Knoxville, Tennessee, just outside of the Great Smoky Mountains) were easy to empty: those cabinets only contained, well, DISHES.

The cabinets on the other side of the stove, however, were a different story. Home to my Grandma’s set of Franciscan Desert Rose dishes (a prized possession which I tend to use for special occasions), these cabinets have, over the years, collected odds and ends that made it look like, as my mom would say, Fibber McGee’s closet.

It took a little longer to clear those cabinets out because they contained things like: a plastic popcorn box, Roxie’s heartworm medication, a bag of screws and nails, Sterno containers, a votive holder that one of the boys made eons ago, Roxie’s Bubble Buddy (which I had forgotten about for the last four years or so), packing tape, a flower vase, and other various odds and ends that had no place there.

This was a great opportunity to clean out that cabinet and restore it to what it needs to be: a clutter-free, spacious–and dare I say attractive–storage space for something that really means a lot to me.

Franciscan Desert Rose

Now if I can just make that happen elsewhere in the house…


  • Heather Davis

    I, too, have my grandma’s Desert Rose dishes! We use them everyday, though. Prior to my getting them, they hadn’t been used at all – socked away and stored. So, I’m making up for lost time. 😉

  • Grandma W

    The cabinet looks great, great job. Also it is funny but I just visted an Antique store this week in Clinton TN and they are worth a lot of money. Just one place setting 4 pieces was $125.00.
    Grandma W

  • Headless Mom

    My granny had these too! Actually, my aunt lives in her house now and still has them. I’ll make sure to tell her that they are worth a lot now! Thanks Grandma W!

  • CJ

    I have the same set handed down. Love em! Great grandma read tea leaves so I have 2-3 times the tea cups than dishes. Never knew it til I inherited them and unpacked them! Since mine are handpainted from 1930’s no microwaves. No dishwasher. So special occasion only.

    Can’t imagine what the FIRST demo attempt was like to make you consider the contents of cabinets across the room even! Good luck with that!!!!

  • Liz

    Love the dishes. I also have my Nagy Mama’s dishes. They’re stored in Garth’s (not his real name) Grandmother’s hutch, both far away from the “fall-out” zone that is living with a klutz, like me. Well done on the demo!